Sneaker Wimp

One morning earlier this week, within the span of 20 minutes, I saw two men wearing sneakers with their suits. These weren’t “hipster” guys displaying groovy sneakers to make a statement that although they work in offices, they are still, at heart, unique and special snowflakes a/k/a non-conformist mavericks. No, these were regular, run-of-the-mill, ordinary cubicle schlubs sporting regular running shoes with their suits.
The first sighting caused my delicate features to contort and converge in the center of my face in a delightful blend of revulsion and insta-hatred for the offender, and a hushed, “What the fuck?” The second caused those same features, which had just unfurled themselves back into a state of repose, to once again band together — only this time they marched off the landscape of face and soldiered forth to do bodily harm to the offender. Eyewitnesses to the event later reported to the media that my teeth gnashed the second offender’s ankles with all the fervor of a bear’s jaws clamping around a particularly slippery salmon. I, of course, couldn’t see for myself because my eyes were among the features that escaped my face in order to tackle the prey.
There is no reason why a man should ever wear sneakers with his suit. It’s bad enough that for a way too long stretch of time in the ’80s women wore sneakers with their navy blue shoulder-padded John Malloy-approved power suits. It’s bad enough that some silly skirts are still doing it, even though a plethora of more attractive options present themselves in the form of cute little flats with bows on the toes and discreet flexible soles to make the long long two-block hike from the subway or bus stop to the office building a more comfortable one. But guys? What gives, man?
(I must confess, in a secular way, that when I lived in Philadelphia, I tried the sneaker thing, just to see if I could do it without wanting to do myself bodily harm. It only lasted one day, and only one way. I hated myself so much for doing it at all that I couldn’t bear to repeat the experience for the walk home.)
Fellas, I do understand that your four-inch stilettos may not be the most practical shoes with which to navigate the sometimes treacherous city streets, but please know that Audrey Hepburn-style ballerina flats are in style again this season! Although they won’t create the illusion of longer legs or create and then emphasize lovely calf muscles the way the stilettos will, it doesn’t really make a difference underneath your pants anyway. Unless you trade the trousers for a skirt (savvy shoppers will buy the jacket, pants, and skirt for more creative mix-and-match alternatives), in which case I say fuck the flats and stick with the stilettos. Comfort schmomfort. If Carrie Bradshaw and I can run in high heels, so can you.
Be a man about it.