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Are we all secret centipedes?

Old Mar 2nd, 2005, 06:51 PM
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Are we all secret centipedes?

I must confess I love all the recent postings about shoes. I started reading here about 4 years ago and I must confess my all time favorite post was from the woman who had to be talked out of taking 14 pairs of shoes for a 1 month trip in Italy. You guys had to persuade her that her hotel couldn't care less whether she appeared in the same thing twice.
My ex-co-workers have given me stationery, t-shirts, pillows, scarves, etc, with pictures of shoes on them. Duh, because I have lots of shoes I want pictures of them around?
Anyway, I'm planning 3 weeks in France late spring with 1 pair of No Name (made in France)brown suede tennies with nubbins for walking on cobblestones, 1 pair dressy black Geoxx loafers, 1 pair of teal nubuck sandals, and 1 pair cobalt blue No Name tennies with nubbins. Having once broken an ankle on a trip you won't find me in mules, platforms or heels. Sound OK?
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Old Mar 3rd, 2005, 11:36 AM
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Not to me, but you probably know what kind of activities you do more than I do. I am not one of those who travel with only two pair of shoes as some claim to do. I don't think it's good for your feet, for one thing, but also because I wouldn't wear some things in the evening or dining out that I would wear during the day when walking a lot.

I always take about 6 pair of "shoes", loosely defined, probably, but it doesn't bother me to take them. I think having the right shoes, and comfortable shoes, is more important than almost any other kind of clothing, actually.

Anyway, the thing I would not find acceptable in your list is that you are taking two pairs of what you call tennies with nubbins. I think I know what you mean by those -- the more flamboyant, colorful, quasi-runing shoe styles now popular for women (but they aren't really that sturdy). I don't consider Geoxx loafers to be dressy, either, but maybe I haven't seen that style and you are using the term loafer loosely. The sandals sound okay.

I take one pair of really decent walking shoes instead of both those tennies with nubbins, that's the main difference I'd make in your list. The dressy loafers may be okay, especially if you don't go anywhere really dressy; then they sound okay with pants. I always take a pair of black leather comfortable slides when in summer as they can be dressy and don't take up much space. I don't have ones with those soles that are plastic and hard as a rock and don't bend, but something more comfortable with a more flexible sole--I think those inflexible soles are dangerous and not very comfortable. Mules aren't particularly dangerous, they just don't have a back, but don't have to be high or platform soles or anything.

How late is late Spring and where in France? If you think it could be warm, I'd take a pair of Teva flipflops or something to use as combination slippers or hanging out in the room and possibly on the street if it gets hot (are your teal nubuck sandals casual or dressy? )

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Old Mar 3rd, 2005, 11:38 AM
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I meant I would substitute one pair of walking shoes for one of those pair of tennies with nubbins.
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Old Mar 3rd, 2005, 12:42 PM
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I'm a fairly light packer, but I can't imagine taking less than 3 pair of shoes on a trip. What seems missing to me in your list is something a bit dressier, but only you know if your loafers are as dressy as you need to get given your wardrobe. There are a lot of cute little ballet flats around now that would take up no room at all.

I agree that the 2 pair of tennies are overkill. Pick the one color that goes best with your casual day clothes (probably the brown), and either put in something else (like a different pair of walking shoes) or leave room to buy some shoes in France.

In warm weather, I usually take a pair of black sandals that I can walk all day in, but are dressy enough for evening. That seems to work well enough for me.
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Old Mar 3rd, 2005, 06:42 PM
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Maybe tennies wasn't the right description but I wasn't sure what to call them. Maybe the brown ones are 'hiker's? For walking from the parking lot to perched villages. Again, ??? You have to walk to get there right? The sandals are dressy enough for wearing with a dress for dinner. So the black Geoxx could go with black silk pants to a bistro. Right? Actually, I'd like to take more. I'm a complete shoe nut, but everyone says pack light. P.S., the No Names aren't flashy, they are just gosh awful comfortable and don't look like something you'd wear to the health club. The reason for 2 pairs is rain.
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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 05:41 AM
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I presume by 'tennies' you mean trainers with arch support; good, shock-proof soles; and insoles. If they're the old-fashioned kind of tennis shoe forget them. Alas, truly comfortable and stable shoes almost invariably look somewhat ugly, but better an ugly shoe than an ugly foot.

You can always carry a spare pair of insoles if you want to have a 'fresh' pair of trainers.

I'm with Christina; I'd sub one of those tennies with a dressy pair of sandals. These of course will be impossible to walk long distances in, but they also will be light and won't take up much room.
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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 06:05 AM
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Interesting.

What do guys do? I wear just one pair of shoes when I travel, and it's always black leather. It's comfortable enough for me to walk for fairly long periods of time and yet dressy/formal enough if the occasion requires it. But then these days I can probably live on a carry on for a one-week trip.

I've never understood the fascination that women have with shoes. Someone will have to explain this to me.
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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 07:14 AM
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111op, I agree with you. I can't understand it either. I just can't beleive that people spend there time looking at other people's shoes. Especially when you are traveling and have much more interesting things to look at. Just ware something that your feet are happy with.
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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 07:46 AM
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That's funny, Randy. But I guess part of wanting to dress up is to "feel good." So I suppose that side of things has nothing to do with whether someone else is looking at what you're wearing.

But it seems to me that convenience is also paramount, and these days I just always wish that my bag were lighter. So an extra pair of shoes would be superfluous, in my book.
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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 07:52 AM
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There are "inner directed" personalities, and there are "other directed" personalities. The former don't care what people think of their footwear; the latter do.

Wanting to impress people with superficialities never made sense to me, because I don't judge people by what they wear, drive, or carry, and I think that people who do are missing something important.

I believe it was Maslow (or maybe Fritz Perls) who said "Everything we do, we do to get love." This principle applies equally to Hitler and the guy in the sweatshirt with the designer's advertising on the outside.
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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 08:07 AM
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Well, I think that there's a middle ground to this. And anyway, I do think that there's a certain degree of care that should go into presentation -- if only not to feel out of place. And when the occasion requires it -- dining at a good restaurant, concerts, etc., some work is necessary.

But my personal preference would be to strike for a compromise between presentation and convenience. So I'll wear one pair of shoes that I think will work for most occasions. And these days I don't really wear or bring a jacket unless I'm really expecting to wear it. But I'll bring along wear a more respectable shirt. And I don't give a second thought to attending a concert in jeans, since I've done so many times.

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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 08:47 AM
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Why do women love shoes?

For me- it is the subtle variations on style. My husband always aks why I need yet another pair of black shoes. To me, every pair of black shoes I have has a certain look to go with certain outfits.

Also, cute shoes look good on everyone and they don't make your butt look big.

If it's an addiction that doesn't hurt you, doesn't hurt others AND provides jobs- what is the harm?
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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 09:11 AM
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I agree with you, BlueSwimmer -- and I guess since I'm not carrying other people's bags, I don't care.

But this does remind me of my couple of hours in Capri last summer. At the ticket counter for the ferry to Naples (I think it was), I saw this well-dressed couple with rather large bags. And it seemed like the man was struggling with them and the woman was doing nothing. I immediately thought that the man was being tortured by the woman's belongings -- shoes, clothes, etc. and thought to myself why they had to torture themselves this way (or why she had to torture him).

Then this further reminds me of the very common request that'd be asked of man by a woman -- "Could you please hold my bag for me?" (Wasn't this spoofed in a Seinfeld episode? Or did I dream this up?)


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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 09:25 AM
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111op, if you want to know the facination with shoes, you should also investigate the "facination" with skirts. Women simply cannot wear tennis shoes with skirts. Loafers also do not often work well with skirts. Why? Because people walk differently in heels than they do in loafers. Walking in loafers causes a more "flat" walk, which can cause a woman walking in a skirt to look dressed down. Your posture is simply different in heels and this affects how the entire outfit looks.

If you don't know what I mean, take a look at girls wearing skirts and flip flops nowadays. They look far more dressed down than a woman in a skirt and heels.

One more thing. Some people here seem to have a strong appreciation for art, but when the subject of clothing comes up, they act as though it is self-serving to want to dress nicely. Some people (men and women both!) find that clothing is a matter of artistic expression. This is the reason why the fashion houses of Europe (and elsewhere) still exist. There is art in the fabric and style. Even when it comes to what one has on their feet.
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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 09:26 AM
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I am a woman, and I hate shoes...

I take my shoes off the instant I'm at home, as I love walking barefoot. I would go barefoot all the time if it were allowed.

I own, at any given time, at most three or four pairs of shoes. Each pair gets replaced once it's worn out.

I own a pair of everyday comfortable somewhat-dressy sandals that I wear to work and play. (these get replaced the most - usually black)

I own a pair of good hiking/walking shoes with arch and ankle support, laces and thick soles. (right now, brown Eccos)

I own a pair of boots for those rare occasions they are necessary (I live in Florida), such as forays into northern climes to visit relatives, particularly rainy days, or renaissance festivals. (black)

I own one pair of dressy flats for job interviews and anniversary dinners. (usually black).

I prefer comfort above all else. I only ever take two pairs with me on a trip. If it is to a snowy place, then the hikers and the boots. If to a moderate clime, sandals and hikers. If on business, sandals and dressies.

Of course, I'm not into a lot of stuff that are typically attributed to 'female' sensibilities, such as shopping (hate malls!), closets full of clothing, and taking more than 10 minutes to get ready for ANYTHING. (I'd rather sleep an extra half hour than blow dry and style my hair).

My DH says he appreciates many of these non-feminine traits. That means I found the right DH!!!

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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 09:28 AM
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By the way, when I say women "cannot," I do not mean that its physically impossible or will kill anyone, obviously. I am just trying to illustrate a point that most won't. I doubt that most nice restaurants would approve of women walking in with white tennis shoes and a skirt. And as many people know, most clubs won't allow people to enter with sneakers.
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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 09:33 AM
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Fascinating. Thanks for the insights!

Actually my mom has rather large feet, and she never wears heels anymore. She wears sneakers or sandals -- anything smaller her feet are cramped and she ends up with bruised nails. I'm always telling her that no one is watching. I think that she'd prefer something dressier (and, I guess, so would I, when I travel with her), but then there's nothing she can really do.

My big concern when I travel with her is definitely her comfort level in walking (sometimes I think that her stamina is much better ) because her shoes always seem to give her so much trouble.

But we go to nice restaurants anyway (at least once in a while).
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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 09:47 AM
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If past experience is any predictor, I'm sure I'll come home from the trip with a new pair of shoes--especially if I run across a Mephisto or Arche shop with good prices. I guess I never should have described the 'No Name' shoes as 'tennies'. I would never be caught in Europe in white tennies. My husband even knows not to wear a baseball cap! Although I'm most comfortable in jeans and Nikes, I don't dress that way when I travel because I feel one sort of needs to represent the opposite of the 'ugly American' picture. Hope I phrased that right.
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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 10:06 AM
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Now that we understand why women like shoes, can someone please explain why men are fascinated by carburetors, electronic gizmos that don't really do anything, and spectator sports? I really don't understand.

One pair of shoes on a trip? Oh, the horror! (not for fashion reasons, but for comfort!)
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Old Mar 4th, 2005, 10:23 AM
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This will take us a bit off the subject, but...

Actually I'm, on the whole, a pretty practical and basic person. I don't own a digital camera, and my computer at home is obsolete. I don't have a Blackberry and I don't own a car.

I do have a cell phone.

So, no I don't think that I understand the standard guy fascinations either.

And anyway, as I said, I think the convenience is an important factor for me -- and quality does beat quantity. And more and more, I prefer to buy something that's genuinely good and that will last and look fashionable. These days I stick with Bally shoes, which are obviously not the most expensive, but are very basic and comfortable and the right price for me. They really do work very well.

I guess my vice would be agnes b shirts, not that I've that many. Again, not the most expensive, but to me, they're stylish and do the trick.

I do like to eat out, and I do splurge for meals. I do like chocolates.

I guess my worst vice is probably my 500 (?) classical music CDs. It's really nothing to write home about, but most people will probably find it bizarre. But then I take comfort in knowing that there's someone out there who's trying to collect all extant performances of Beethoven's "Eroica" symphony (#3) -- the last I checked he has over 300 performances of this symphony alone. I only a couple.

But it's interesting how these things work. Without consciously attempting to collect Chopin's Ballade No. 1, I probably have quite a few recordings of this because it's such a standard warhorse.

I'm very glad that I don't especially like opera, so I don't collect it, but I do have three (?) performances of "Traviata."

I do try very hard to suppress my urge to buy another CD.
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