Friday, April 1, 2016

High heels, baby.




Nathaniel, my son, above (named after the sea captain in the Holling Clancy Holling book Seabird) has been asking The Big Questions.

Why are we here?  What's the meaning of death? And, furthermore, Why do women wear high heels? Men don't. Except rock stars.

[Bonus thinking material: If women's roles in ads were played by men.]

I mumble mumble mumble because where does one start when it comes to talking about these things? Rock stars. I tell him, "Well, son, men used to wear heels. Like in France, a long time ago, there was a lot of heel-wearing among men."

[John Malkovich in Les Liaisons Dangereuses, embracing a wall wearing tight tights and calf bows, probably, and definitely wearing makeup because that's what men did. They rouged. They wigged. Let's go back there.]

"Sure, Mom, in France a long time ago. But what about now?" my son asks. He turns the screw.

"I want to wear your boots."

I'm thinking, Kid, knock yourself out. This is nowhere in the parenting manual. We are off-road.

Put on these ridiculous things I as your mother have been socialized to think look adorbs! on my feet so my balance is off and my tush sticks out the better to take me from behind, but we've all agreed to call it euphemistically "Spring Fashion." It's "Chimpanzee Biology." These boots weren't made for walking.

And he does.

I think I had the same expression when I tried on my first pair of heels, 2-inch black suede beauties for the Allderdice High School semi-formal. The wha'? face.

I wobbled around Little's Shoe Store full of new secrets until I hit my stride: this was womanhood. It was uncomfortable, it made you a little taller, and you had to pay for it.



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