How I became a shoeblogger inadvertently hits on some of the truth of the matter:

While men often don’t get women’s almost religious zeal for footwear, women often fail to grasp why men often times are incapable of giving one single shit about them, and sometimes, somehow, inexplicably don’t notice shoes at all.

Shoes are easy for men to miss because they’re as far away from the eyes as possible. Let’s say an attractive woman enters a room with several men in it. (This has happened before.) In noticing the girl, the men will tend to go for the eye contact first and work their way down. But the path a male eye must follow between a girl’s eyes and her feet is loaded with detours. If his eyeline makes it to the knee, that’s typically a bad thing since there are several parts of a girl that male eyes are eager to explore. This is what makes the female obsession with shoes so troubling for self-centered males. A woman could win the man of her dreams while wearing clown shoes over bulging hobbit feet. Guys won’t notice.

Actually, they’d probably notice the atrocities being represented as footwear by the likes of Alexander McQueen, and they’d much prefer the clown shoes, believe me.

Kate Snow of ABC NewsAnd if I’m self-centered, my center is decidedly off-center, so I might not go for eye contact at first: I might look as far away as possible without actually leaving the scene. Which puts me exactly where you think it does. (These particular shoes are being worn by Kate Snow, co-anchor of the weekend edition of Good Morning America, who so far as I can tell in no way resembles Bilbo Baggins.)

This tendency perhaps was exacerbated by three years in a Catholic school, where all the girls dressed alike and most of them were far more mature (in several senses) than I, a period during which I learned some of the meanings of “humility” and almost all of the fine detail points of Bass Weejuns. But not even Weejuns are sacrosanct these days, so those of us with eyes cast downward are forced to adjust.


  1. smitty »

    1 November 2009 · 2:36 pm

    Now, in the abstract, I’m interested in anything not-male.
    So a curve of any sort; hip, calf, or ankle, is worthy of attention.
    The shoe, while not without stylistic opportunity in its own right, is a mere platform.
    Understand, the interest doesn’t really get to the ‘eye offending me’ stage.

  2. RipVanTinkle »

    1 November 2009 · 2:53 pm

    Totally lost on this one.

    Off to an auction!

  3. Jim - PRS »

    1 November 2009 · 3:06 pm

    Kate Snow wears them very well, indeed.

  4. RipVanTinkle »

    1 November 2009 · 6:05 pm

    Do you like men’s shoes too?

  5. CGHill »

    1 November 2009 · 7:00 pm

    Not especially: after giving away a couple of largely-unused pairs, I have pared my personal collection down to seven.

  6. Andrea Harris »

    1 November 2009 · 9:59 pm

    “While men often don’t get women’s almost religious zeal for footwear”

    What about women who don’t get it? To me shoes are portable floors for my feet.

  7. CGHill »

    1 November 2009 · 10:33 pm

    I think you’re supposed to offset me, a person who has no business interfering in these arcane matters.

  8. Kay Dennison »

    1 November 2009 · 10:48 pm

    In college we wore Weejuns penny loafers because they held up well trekking around campus. When I was a kid in Catholic school, we wore saddle shoes because they looked cute with our jumpers and amazingly enough my daughter did, too and for once I thought my mother was right — they do look cute with plaid jumpers. LOL

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