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The big sexy shoe showdown
Monday: Red Bandolino open-toe slingbacks. What would she say to that? The investment in a fresh weekend pedicure was worth it.
She countered with blue pointy heels, further sexifying and elongating her calves and ankles. “Anti-maljo,’’ she said, minx-like.
Hmm. “Take win,’’ I texted her, still being friendly.
Tuesday: I lashed out in animal-print peeptoe heels, ridiculously daring with black net stockings. Nobody has to know they are Naturaliser and not Manolo Blahnik, who brought “hooker chic’’ to glamour and quality.
Playing dead to catch corbeau alive, she glided in wearing tan platforms—subtle and retro-mod.
“Your toes are more exciting than mine today,’’ she taunted. Like I would fall for her fake concession.
A showdown was in the making. I taught this woman everything she knows about the wonderful world of shoedom.
Now she is assuming honours on to herself as the sexy shoe queen of our community.
For years, she suffered from emporophobia and was capable of spending hours in malls without buying any more than half a yard of black cotton.
“I had some bad experiences,’’ she explained. Post-traumatic shopping stress, she claimed, which was brought on by watching me wrestle with saleswomen of legendary fierceness. So she went into a total withdrawal phase of avoiding shops altogether, other than to buy food and toilet paper. “It’s all your fault, really,’’ she sniped.
Having got too big for her stilettos, she was showing me up daily. Because my cover job (a front for my true role as an opinionista) requires rather dull footwear, she could lord it over me with colourful soles and skyscraper heels.
I continued the attack.
Wednesday: Cut-away Vince Camuto baby-soft leather with a zipper at the back of the heel.
Thursday: Black lace-ups with white top-stitching, a modern take on the high-heel oxfords of 1900s Pinet whose brand tragically did not survive World War II but whose chic-meets-street aesthetic lives on.
Friday: pewter Anne Klein by day with the serious buckle on the vamp, scandalously conflicting with the flirty heel, followed at night by bronze Anne Taylor ballet flats which were cleverly disguised as cheap Payless slip-ons.
She issued a threat: Old Hollywood glamourpuss red satin peep-toe platforms! Oohhh, this most worthy opponent was mocking me, stomping all over my ego, leaving footprints on my heart. She was transforming our clever little shoe repartir from a friendly back-and-forth to an all out, take-no-prisoners toe-to-toe bradang! What else does she have hiding in her closet—the heel-less shoe, now clogging downtown shop windows in tacky synthetics, but which has been challenging convention since British shoemaker Rayne in the 1940s explored the unusual construction. You think Lady Gaga invented outlandish? Time to bring out the envy shoes. The kind that women take out second mortgages to acquire. Sequins, ostrich feathers and triple-decker platforms might be involved.
“Let her have the armadillo,’’ my unhelpful friend Zara suggested, maliciously, referring to the impossibly curved shoe with the reed-thin heel which makes the feet look as if they are en pointe.
Unleashed by enfant terrible Alexander McQueen, the armadillo resembles, well, yes, the mammal with the leathery armour. Guaranteed to hobble any woman, they are secret weapons to enslave us so we can’t run away, stomp down the opposition or kick attackers where it hurts most.
Alas, my best reply will be crimson-encrusted mules with the curved toe resembling the Turkish slippers which I first loved as a child after I read the story of Queen Esther who beguiled a king with her beauty and wisdom and saved her people.
All the courtiers in the glossy pages of my story book had curly toed slippers. How will this shoe throwdown end? After a week of contest, my heels hurt and my pedicure is chipped.
You think I am giving up?
Never. My “bestie’’ Jay will do the honourable thing and make her concession speech by midnight tonight. I have already written it for her.
Like the besotted poet in the Song of Solomon, she will intone, “How beautiful are thy feet in shoes, O prince’s daughter.’’
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