Posted by: notdeaddinosaur | August 7, 2010

More on Shoes

I am a defective woman. I don’t get shoes.

Oh, I can fake it; mostly with the understanding that I not only do I have no style, I have anti-style. The more hideous I find something, the more chic it must be. By acting accordingly, I can pass. One friend’s motto is, “It is and always will be about the shoes.” A patient names her shoes after her co-workers. I ooh and aah as if I care, hoping that no one is the wiser.

I’m more about comfort, especially after my bouts with non-healing metatarsal fractures and plantar fasciitis. I stick to sneaks and Dansko’s under pants in the office. Back in the day, when I used to think pants were unprofessional, it was sensible pumps (heels never higher than an inch) under skirts. Once I found a pair I liked (ie, comfortable plus classically attractive, defined as something not even my anti-style could mess up) I bought them up in all the colors they had and wore them out, one by one (well, technically two by two).

About ten years ago I tripped over a pair of sneakers and broke a bone in my foot. Thus began six months (not weeks) of casts and CAM walkers, crutches and transcutaneous bone stimulators before I could walk with any semblance of normalcy. It was a rough time.

One day during this period, I had a memorable encounter with a patient. She was in her twenties, and I wasn’t sure if she’d finished high school or even had her GED. She was working as a personal care aide (ie, not a career requiring a great deal of intellectual prowess).

I limped into the room in my CAM walker, sat down, and greeted her. She just stared at my feet.

“What happened to you?” she asked.

“I broke a bone in my foot,” I replied for the hundredth time that week.

She continued staring.

Finally she said, “Why isn’t that other foot in a sneaker?”

I looked down at my single sensible pump, and realized she was absolutely right. After the biggest *D’oh!* moment of my life, I started wearing a sneaker on my good foot for enhanced stability, and to reduce the chances of twisting that ankle and knocking myself off my feet completely.

Just goes to show that “intelligent” and “educated” doesn’t always equal “smart”.


  1. Welcome to the Sensibly Shod Sisterhood. You will now frequently be mistaken for a lesbian. 😉

    When I was in chemo, I was always amused by the footwear. My experienced gyn/onco always wore good walking shoes, as did the more experienced residents. Interns and the occasional second-year wore low heels, and only the medical students were foolish enough to wear stilettos or 5-inch wedge sandals.

  2. It took a small child to ask why the Emperor was naked.

    I generally prefer my shoes be sensible too, and frankly minimalist. I put something like 20 miles on my Vans last week on vacation! But yes, ok, for special events I wear platform heels, usually wedges for better support.

  3. I have problems in my right midfoot from an old Lisfrancs injury and torn ligaments in both my ankles.

    if it doesn’t accomodate my braces, I don’t wear it. It is not the most fashionable of looks, but then again I appreciate having some mobility on two feet versus needing crutches to get around.

    That’s just how that is, and I don’t worry about fashion. That said, I have one pair of sandals which are for the occasions where I am going to be on my ass and my feet will be just being pretty for all but walking myself ten feet to the bathroom and back. (I can handle that much barefooted.) So that’s all that needs to be.

  4. I live in Danskos. Wear them almost exclusively…office, OR, L&D, home, shopping.

    1 pair will last about 2-3 years and then I get another pair. The old one will be demoted to gardening shoes.

  5. My mother raised me on the concept that suffering for beauty is not sensible (which has caused some problems in my dating life) but which has also caused my primary care physician to remark on what nice, healthy feet I have. Apparently a lifetime of comfortable shoes does have some rewards 🙂

  6. […] were accepted. It was my style, and I’ve always been comfortable with it. Even when a broken foot 10 years ago led me to begin wearing slacks instead of skirts, I never even considered wearing a white […]

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