Sunday, June 6, 2004

The Heeling Process

Guys like simplicity. Sunday = football, one hairstyle for a lifetime (often outlasting the hair), a couple pairs of shoes max…. So why is it that when a guy sees a woman in high heels, his head rotates like an owl spying a limping mouse? Is he marveling at the torque mechanics of such a highly-leveraged load? Is he, like some NASCAR devotees, simply waiting for the crash that seems inevitable? Or is he responding to a trigger buried deep in genetic code? In this case, DNA stands for Do Not Approach.

And what better way to get his attention than to say ‘go away?’ Men have their own secret, daily ‘Opposite Day.’ “Whatever you do, honey, don’t take out the trash.” Ok, that one just might confuse him, but you get the idea.

The higher the heel, the higher the deal. It’s a simple girly warning that screams “I dare you to afford me.” It screams because wearing 3-inch heels can make you do just that – scream. “I’m pouty, but it’s my shoes fault and there’s nothing you can do about it, big guy.” And while we all know guys love dares, this guy’s in over his head. You think he would have learned from his past mistakes, or watching his buddies crash and burn. Touching a lit match once should be sufficient, but as the entranced bug so eloquently said to the bug zapper in “A Bug’s Life,” “I can’t help it – it’s so beautiful.” Zap!

On the flip side, there is no other reason to wear high heels than to attract attention. Sure, they make you taller, and by proportion, thinner. But the trade-off is the odds that at any moment your painted lips will smack pavement. And if you’re lucky enough to have mastered the tilting walk, your calf muscles have probably shortened so much that you’ll never walk flat-footed again, bound to tip-toe Grinch-like through Whoville the rest of your days.

So why do we climb up into these strappy deathtraps? Yes, I admit that I wear them sometimes, and if a guy turns to look, I snarl at the lout. What do I expect? Of course he’s going to look – I’m wearing heels! What I didn’t realize is that heads were turning not because I was the ultimate vamp, but that as a result of jacking my heels sky high, my knees were now making a bizarre clicking noise…

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