This is the third installment of A Man’s POV, by my husband Nick.
Julia and I are married. We have a house and a dog. We both have full-time jobs and we like to exercise. We try to eat dinner together most nights. Once a month we like to put on fancy clothes, suspend all diets and budgets, and go out on a nice date. We get restaurant recommendations from friends, read reviews, and sometimes even take a calculated risk with a new hot spot (who knows!). Everything is great. Date night arrives and then, usually as I'm buttoning up my shirt, I hear Julia's voice from the vicinity of her closet, "Hey, I hope you chose a restaurant that's within 200 yards because I'm planning on wearing shoes! Yay! Date night!"
Allow me to be perfectly clear: If life were a cartoon, shoes would be snickering little terrorists that hide in girls' closets and come to life to steal fun and use it as currency in some kind of drug ring.
For the sake of my own sanity, I need to know that Julia doesn't go to Nordstrom and say, "Hi! If you give me some things I can strap to my feet which will render me totally immobile and inflict such physical pain that I can't stand for more than six minutes, I'll give you a bunch of cash as long as they're cute."
Once I carried Julia ten blocks through New York because her snazziest heels tried to eat her toes. I'm constantly carrying Julia—even around the house—and that's mostly ok. She can't help it that her body's response to any combination of food, TV, and wine is to go comatose and require transportation to bed. I'm cool with that. It's the best way I know to not have to watch Mad Men. But when I have to wear a human backpack because she puts her trust in fashion and in return is betrayed by ruthless design, I start to lose patience.
I can't handle the fact that people buy uncomfortable shoes. In the last year alone a man-made object left the solar system, a guy named Felix bungee jumped from outer space, and Arrested Development aired a fourth season. Humans can do anything. So why are we settling for ruined date nights and blisters?
Dumb shoes are the last major stronghold of those who never want to evolve but fortunately there's a warrior princess who means to defeat them and her name is Tory Burch.
A few years ago, Julia and I were walking through the shoe section of a store on one of her yearlong missions to find a certain kind of boot when she saw a pair of Tory Burch flats and said, "Those are supposed to be the best flats ever." That struck me as odd because flats, as I understood it, meant cheap, comfortable, and as fashionable as a fanny pack. If you want Miranda Priestly to notice how functional your shoes are, they're what you'd be wearing when she makes you cry. While Julia was in the dressing room, I circled back and tracked down the mayor of the shoe section to get some clarification. "Correct me if I'm wrong, but these are NICE flats? I'll pay anything."
Those shoes have opened up the world to us and while that sounds like pure hyperbole you must not have noticed that I never exaggerate. Imagine a day in San Francisco during which you can walk around freely for hours in a stylish outfit, shop in all of your favorite boutiques, and have a nice dinner all without the logistics and hassle of needing multiple shoe changes and coordinating a resupply. If you're smiling knowingly at the screen, you've already met my best friend Tory. If my magical day sounds too good to be true then you need to go shopping and be prepared to eat your ignorant words.
And to Tory, a big thank you from me and my lower back.
(Photo by Meg Perotti; see more.)