The High Price of Sole (tf)

I have very firm opinions on men’s summer footwear. Since Stevens has brought it up, I shall share them with you now.

First of all, men should never wear sandals. It’s just wrong. If I can see your toes and you’re not a woman, please cover them up. Sandals are for girls. Girls have pretty feet. A guy’s foot looks like a slab of meat with hair on it.

Now that that’s out of the way….on the sneakers. Unless you’re a runner, or someone who plays basketball, there is no reason whatsoever to spend more than $30 on a pair of sneakers. I realize that if you engage in either of these activities you will have your wallet gouged unmercifully, but that’s what you get for being overly ambitious. Suck it up or go back to the couch where you belong.

A single pair of Converse Chuck Taylor’s is the only sneaker you’ll ever need. I have 2, but one pair was a present for being part of a wedding party. My colors are green and navy blue. When they get dirty you just throw them in the washer. They’ll last 20 years, they go with anything, and they’ve never gone out of style. It’s the easiest shopping you’ll ever do.

But honestly, I hardly wear mine. My latest pair of Doc Marten boots are 4 years old. I wear them 12 months a year. I wear them with shorts and I wear them with dress-up pants. I wear them when I’m shoveling snow and I wear them when I’m cutting the grass and I wear them when eating in a fancy restaurant. I wear them when I fall asleep on the couch….making sure they’re hanging over the edge so I don’t get yelled at, and I wear them when I go for long walks. Three years ago I got another pair for Christmas just in case I couldn’t find them anymore (they must be specific. annkle-high dark brown). They’re still in the box in my closet…..waiting for the call.

I even wear them on the beach, which embarrasses my kids but that sand is hot and sandals or (even worse) “flip-flops” on guys, even on a beach, is just plain creepy and girly. When you wear Doc Martens on the beach people can tell a few things about you. One is that you don’t really like the beach, and are only there for your kids. Two, you are probably not in a very good mood and should best be left alone. Three, that cup you are drinking from is probably filled with booze. And lastly, that you’re probably from Scranton.

I can recall one day a few years back. One of those days at the shore that sun worshippers die for. In the 90s. Painfully blue skies. No breeze. My wife gave me a few hours off, so I visited the island museum. Wonderfully air-conditioned. I had all kinds of room to roam because there was only one other guy in there. The museum asks you to sign a guest book, which I love. They had a staff one, and a box for donations, which I love too. Anyway, in the guest book I noticed the name above mine. Another guy from Scranton. The two of us, like fish out of water. But entirely content, and both wearing the proper foot gear.

–Tom Flannery

~ by admin on April 14, 2011.

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