I look forward to spring for really only one reason — the warmer weather means I can eschew socks, chuck my clunky winter shoes in the closet and break out the sandals! Last Monday was the first day I was able to indulge my bare-toe fetish and I slipped on a pair of brown slides I had bought on sale at the end of last season.
Upon taking my first few steps, I realized these shoes might be a bit problematic. I do not remember them having a two-inch heel when I bought them. Granted, two inches isn’t much, and it’s a flat heel, but since I have all the grace of an elephant in a china shop, two-inch flat heels can be extremely dangerous.
I don’t know what possessed me to purchase these walking death traps, other than they were on sale and they fit. I am not a shoe person. I hate shopping for shoes. When I absolutely have to go hunting for a new pair of shoes, I’ll find a style that’s comfortable and wear them until they start to fall apart. I only buy neutral colors so they’ll go with anything in my wardrobe. As long as they don’t make my feet hurt, I don’t care what they look like. Unless they have heels.
I am not a girly girl, but I’m no tomboy either. I like pretty, but I’ll take comfort over pretty any day. I detest clothes shopping more than I do shoe shopping. When I need new clothes to replace ones I’ve worn for years, I’ll put it off as long as possible, then give in and hit the mall. My idea of clothes shopping is to walk around, find three or four pieces of clothing that looks comfortable, take them to the dressing room and try them on. If it fits and I don’t feel like I’ll have to stand as stiff as a board all day due to lack of movement, I’ll go out and buy two different colors or prints of the same style. Shopping done.
Clearly, I am not a fashionista. I couldn’t tell Gucci from Prada if my life depended on it. And yet, I am addicted to shows like “Project Runway” and “America’s Next Top Model.” I don’t watch for the fashion. I watch for the artistry. I am a great admirer of people who have the talent to make beautiful things, such as the designers on “Project Runway” and the photographers and stylists on “ANTM.” It’s also why I love shows like “Top Chef.” I’m a very picky eater, and would probably never eat 95 percent of the food the chef contestants make, but I do love watching them cook. I guess I’m just a little envious of people who have an abundance of talent. I never learned to cook or sew, and my photography is… passible. For an amateur.
I sometimes feel I lack the “girly” gene. I don’t do anything with my hair. Wash, comb, air dry, done. Some days my vestigial “girly” gene will kick in and I’ll put it up in a pony tail. I see my hairdresser once every 18 months or so. When I decide my hair is too long to manage, I’ll take a trip down the street to see my stylist where she’ll whack off most of the length and give me some highlights. (‘Highlights! Isn’t that girly?’ you may ask. Not when your brother gets his hair highlighted more than you do.) Then I’ll let it grow out again until I get sick of it. Later, rinse, repeat.
I also don’t wear makeup. To me, this just validates that fact that I don’t have the “girly” gene. I’ve never met another girl who shuns the makeup aisle. I’m sure they exist… but I’ve never met one. Even the lightest coating of makeup makes me feel like I’ve caked my face in it, and I’d be terrified that one wrong move and I’d smear it all over the place and walk around looking like a hung-over clown the rest of the day. Exfoliation, antioxidants, dermabrasion, free radicals — I see these words in the makeup aisle and they may as well be written in a foreign language. I only have enough patience to wash my face and put a little moisturizer on in the drier months. I’m sure skin care experts are fainting in horror.
Needless to say, I’ve never had a facial. I don’t do mani-pedis. I don’t keep my fingernails long enough to bother painting them (having long fingernails, I’ve found, interferes with the speed of my typing). I hear pedicures can be relaxing. I had one once, right before my brother’s wedding. I figured I could be girly for one day and have professionally done fingers and toes. Unfortunately, I got horribly sick the day of the appointment with a full-blown head cold, and was miserable through the entire process. (I was pretty miserable through the wedding, too. I wanted to boogie at the reception, but was too sick to do so.) Perhaps one day, I’ll give in to the “girly” gene and try again, this time with clear sinuses.
I am happy with being a non-girly girl. I get to sleep in a little longer because I don’t have to waste time painting my face or putting goop in my hair. I don’t have to meticulously plan my wardrobe for the day, making sure my shoes and purse match my outfit. All my shoes match and both my purses are brown.
But I suppose I will have to dig down to find a little of my girly gene in order to get used to these heels. I can learn as a I wobble and try not to pitch down the stairs. It will be challenge, but it’s one I’ll have to eventually master, since I also bought the same pair in black.