There’s a new shoe trend taking over the New York City sidewalks, and somebody needs to put a stop to it immediately. The other day I’m getting in the subway at rush hour and stare all confused-like at the guy across from me. It’s not like he’s overly hot or drooling in his sleep or anything particularly interesting. Never mind the suit and the briefcase—he’s got on these “feet shoes.” Shoes that look exactly like feet. Quick, take cover: It’s a mermaid villain in disguise as a banker.
When I first saw the feet shoes guy it took so much effort not to point and laugh right in his face. But now the curse is only just beginning: I’m seeing feet shoes everywhere. Feet shoes, feet shoes, everybody’s got a pair of feet shoes. I saw the hottest str8 dude at my grocery the other day, but he fucked it up with the goddamn feet shoes.
So just to, like, clear the air, I hate the feet shoes. I want to know which genius out there told his colleagues, "Listen up you guys, Crocks are super popular right now so let’s go ahead and capitalize on their success by making an even uglier shoe—one that looks exactly like a rubber foot. That’ll really turn people on."
Vibram Five Fingers is the name of the company that makes the feet shoes. If you go to the website, you’ll see that the shoes are clearly meant for outdoor activities: Yoga, barefoot running, and connecting your feet back to nature. You know, the granolazons, with their organic water, those Yoga mats they carry everywhere, and their Earth-friendliness. I guess part of me doesn’t get it because I don’t believe in the outdoors. If I can’t wear Cuban heels, I’m not doing it. If you’re going to be in nature, fine, but that doesn’t give you a free pass to wear feet shoes all willy-nilly. Don’t you wear no feet shoes with a suit or in public, unless you want people to know you’re so hot to snorkel you have to put on your fins immediately.
The appeal of the feet shoes is obviously comfort. It’s just like being barefoot, so says the VFF website, except not. It’s just like wearing flip-flops, but cleaner. It’s almost like wearing a pair of Crocks, but anything is better than Crocks, so you’re safe.
But comfort and fashion are two things that just don’t go together. Who wants to be comfortable? When was the last time you saw a “comfortable” pic of Anna Wintour or Lady Gaga? Andre Leon Talley always looks comfy, but he’s wearing custom-made couture, so he’s in the clear. And my hero Carine Roitfeld, of French Vogue, said it best: “I do not like comfortable.” She even blacklisted sneakers in the Vogue Paris offices. You tell ‘em, CaRo! Comfort is for bed; it’s for lounging around the house. I’m probably the biggest clothes whore you know, but the first thing I do when I get home is pull off all my rings, bracelets, necklaces, zip off all my clothes. I’m basically stripped down to a black tank top (Dior) and black boxer briefs (H&M).
So I get the desire to be comfy. Every New Yorker probably walks at least a mile a day, and all that walking is hard on the feet. And as a result, in any issue of those morning commute newspapers (amNY, etc.) there are always ads for cosmetic foot surgery. Given the shoes I wear, I’m probably going to need some of that one day.
My biggest beef with the feet shoes is that they’re ugly, unflattering and way too utilitarian. I hate that any kind of comfort shoe (Crocks, flip flops, etc.) sacrifices design and aesthetics for comfort and utility. Madison Moore does not believe in utility. Sequins and patent leather, only.
Something tells me that the feet shoes are riding on the popularity of Crocks, and I predict that come fall, New Yorkers will be competing for sidewalk space with Crocks and feet shoes. Hey, Crocks started off slowly but surely and now there's a Crocks boutique in Soho. I went inside for 37 seconds (to scoff) and the store was packed. I managed to get out unharmed and, most importantly, un-Crocked.
There is one good thing the feet shoe gives us, though: comic relief! Behold the World’s Ugliest Outfit: one leopard print Snuggie worn like a cape over a pink patent leather cat suit; a feet shoe on one foot, a Crock on the other, and a bandana with the eyes cut out.