Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Heel, toe, heel, toe | The Fashion Dungjen

What started as a simple question, thought and suggestion turned into a fiery and spirited debate.

Using attack-dog tactics and Web-based, guerilla-like warfare, men and women from all over the country gave their two cents – some even left a nickel – on whether or not women should wear heels on campus.

“Why shouldn’t girls wear heels to campus?” retaliated Rachel Blum (alias: Groby), a Los Angeles dweller, via Twitter.

Well, obviously, as someone who has worn heels around campus, I’m not saying women shouldn’t. I’m asking if you think they should. I’m wondering, should the girls who stumble, slide and stomp around because they haven’t yet mastered the heel, toe, heel, toe movement, be parading around campus like they’re on a Prada catwalk?

My answer to that: no.

“I wear heels to class almost every day, but I know how to walk, run, jump and any other random action in them,” said Kelsey Wing, a second-year journalism student, via Facebook. “And to girls who cannot walk in heels, learn how to instead of giving us a bad rap.”

I agree with Wing. It isn’t the girls who know how to function in heels that are the problem. It’s the ones who are falling over while trying that make the entire pump-parading population look ridiculous. And let’s face it: The cobblestone sidewalk that makes up a big portion of the university’s walking space isn’t really conducive to training. That’s better suited for practice time at home where you can look like a buffoon in privacy.

I understand the point of wanting to wear heels to class. I’ve done it on occasion either because I need to be dressed up for something or I just want to. There’s something about wearing heels that’s very powerful and exudes confidence.

“Some of us like to care about the way we present ourselves. I personally would rather fall on my face in my five inch Loubies than wear a pair of hideous sneakers,” Wing said.

And others agreed.

“I agree with Kelsey [Wing] in the fact that we care how we present ourselves,” said Ashley Cranston, a third-year student at the University of Akron via Facebook. “It’s not about trying to impress anyone; it’s about feeling good about yourself … I probably have some heels that are more comfortable than [some] sneakers. It’s all about finding your favorite brand and pair. If you start wearing them, I think you would realize that they’re not that bad.”

I’m wondering where Cranston buys heels that are more comfortable than sneakers; perhaps something I’ll take up with her in the future, but regardless, not everyone is buying in.

“One word: Why?” asked Melinda Hershey, a third-year health promotions student, via Facebook. “I guess this is coming from the girl who wears gym shoes every day of her life though, so I may be biased. But seriously, nobody gives a [crap] about your shoes and you look stupid. And you are in pain. Suck it up and care a little bit less, puhleeease [sic].”

And so people trash heels. People trash sneakers. How can we appease the feet of every fashion-forward or jaunting female on campus?

It might be impossible, but at least there are alternatives.

“So, the only options are five-inch heels or hideous sneakers?” asked Alyssa Ryan, a UC alumna and graduate student at Texas Tech via Facebook. “I wear flats. Ballet slippers, cute little slip-ons, whatever you want to call them - they’re flats. Why? Because if I wore five-inch heels, I would tower over the vast majority of my friends and coworkers. Not to mention the fact that I never have to worry about breaking a heel.”

One of the easiest ways to avoid looking like a drunk on campus – because you can’t stabilize yourself in pumps – is to pack the heels in your bag and wear a complementary pair of flats around until you need the heels for a meeting or presentation.

If you’re like Wing and have it mastered, more power to you. Perhaps we should unite all the successful pump-wearing people to teach a class on the prowess of pumps.

What others had to say:
(on Facebook)

"In all honestly... I laugh at them when they fall.. mean I know but hey, it gives me kicks and giggles." - Joan Milich, Grace College student

"Probably too high maintenance for me. Granted, more thoughts tend to follow ... But that's my immediate reaction, lol." - Zachary James Gauspohl, second-year University of Louisville student

"On my end, I'm much more worried about your personal well-being than how fabulous you look when you trip or fall. Ashley, I agree with you, but again, banging up your face and breaking a bone won't feel any better if you're wearing heels and not sneakers. Overall, I hope walking is a nice experience for everyone, heels or not." - Christopher Campbell, third-year University of Cincinnati student

"Going to Kent for four years, I had mixed feelings about the whole girls in pumps situation. I was often turned off by it and the aspect girls are dressing up to sell themselves to the prof or to some guy who doesn't give a damn about being in class or even for the girl, for that matter. I still think this because the guy professor is always going to dig a girl in tight pants and five inch heels, come on, no matter what sex you are, you are going to check her out whether it is good or bad. However, if you are doing it for the right reasons, to look nice and classy, I give you props, because I would wear pumps to class to look presentable and make myself more professional and respectful. So, I think it all matters on how you are presenting yourself and what your intentions are." - Lesley Katzenmeyer, fourth-year Kent State student

1 comment:

The Novelista Barista said...

hey girl i gave you an award on my page!!!! :)