And Now For Something Completely Different

I am about to tell the tale of sad feet.

These feet happen to belong to me, and since the age of fifteen have been an embarassing SIZE 11. I say embarassing because to mention the size of my feet to silly shoe salesman is to incite a slight widening of the eyes and a bit of (I imagine) silent pity for a girl who must be saddled with large feet.

By and large, I didn't mind. I spent those early years of gargantuity wearing my converse allstars when I wasn't barefoot and spending many, many hours in or at a pool.
I started to enjoy walking into department stores for the rare formal occasion that required "real" shoes, stating loud and proud, "What's the largest size you have in this?" And then turning disdainfully away when a confused "9, maybe 10?" was their response.

But I also remember VERY vividly when I was 15, a freshly-footed size 11, sitting in my Earth Science class and peering at, not mineral samples or molecular structures, but the pages of a blessed J Crew catalog. EVERY single pair of shoes was offered in a size 11.

Wild transports of joy! The Gods have smiled down from Heaven!

But J Crew got boring and I returned to my disdainful rejection of the shoe crowd. I have been instructed to go to "alternative lifestyle" shoe stores for larger size heels. This makes me sad. Instead of the lovely creations you will find below, I found terrifying things that gave me nightmares.

I still get a lot of shoes from J Crew and have found some other sources which satisfy my subdued appreciation for fancy feet, but I stick to flats and boots (which is also a testament to the too-tall issue which enters when tall women try and wear 4.5 inch platforms). My feet are complacent on the best of days, resigned to their paradoxical monstrosity.

Isn't it funny that we inhabit a world where women at my height (5'10'') wear the clothing size of a child and can't shoe their feet? One cannot diet away the size of their feet. Ce n'est pas possible. And still, designers persist in churning out a limited number of size 11s (if they produce them at all), causing a veritable frenzy at the stores which purchase an even smaller amount of them.

Sometimes I wonder if its a willful blindness: women are to be small, and if they simply must be tall, well, why can't we just stretch those small ladies upward? A monstrous gaggle of Gumby ladies trotting their tall frames around, horribly unbalanced on size 8 feet. Please. As far as we want to go on the thin debate, the size of feet is here to stay, and getting larger. Please designers, take note.

And following that diatribe, I present you with those articles of shoe loveliness which are currently causing Sad Feet Syndrome. They are all available up to a size 10. These have been collected from a

Kovette...I am in love...utterly, totally in love:

Loeffler Randall...the perfection is in the beauty of the heel and toe shape

If ANY of these shoes were available in a size 11, then any random search online for a size 11 shoe would be less likely to yield horrible vinyl stripper shoes designed for those wonderful men who have somehow cornered the large-footed women's shoe market, whichare available up to a size 16.