A Post About A Most Delicate And Sensitive Matter

Summer is around the bend, and it’s time for me to once again alienate more than half of my readers, most of my friends, and several family members. It’s time for people to rail at my insensitivity, accuse me of having too much time on my hands, suggest that I start caring about REAL PROBLEMS.

Flip-flops. Unless you are at the beach, the pool, or in the locker room/shower of your gym, they are NOT APPROPRIATE FOOTWEAR.

“But I bought mine at The Gap!” “But they’re COMFORTABLE!” “But – look – they have flowers and gemstones on them!”

Listen, I don’t care if someone’s affixed spinning ballerinas that twirl to “Music Box Dancer” to those shower shoes. THEY’RE STILL SHOWER SHOES.

Big silk flowers?


Bedazzled disco jewels?


Vaguely retro-y Op Art prints that will be blurred, grimy and indistinguishable after 4 wears?


I realize that I am in a minority, the same way I am in a minority about Oprah, mayonnaise, and using internet acronyms past the age of 14. I realize that flip-flops are a beloved institution, a harbinger of fun fun fun/endless summer nights/under the boardwalk/you got women you got women on your mind. And, hey – I’m a big fan of summer. I’m a big fan of painted toenails and little strappy dresses and big floppy hats. I should also note that I am in no way saying don’t wear sandals. Sandals are great. I’m a big fan of those, too. I have 8 pairs of them, myself, ranging from espadrilles to wedges to modified gladiators.


We had a woman come in for an interview here one warm afternoon. Now, this is a nonprofit theatre company. We are pretty casual both in our appearance and overall demeanor. With all that in mind, any prospective employee ought to know that flip-flops should never – NEVER – be a part of one’s interview attire. This woman wore flip-flops to her interview. Not slides, not mules…flip-flops. Pink ones.

She did not get the job.

Finally – they’re GROSS. Take a good look at them, oh ye defenders of your shower shoes. You’ve got maybe half-an-inch of foam rubber between your feet and the giant petri dish that is any given sidewalk in any given city or town.

I’m just saying – I personally wouldn’t want my little piggies whee-whee-wheeing so close to whatever’s tee-tee-teeming on that hot sidewalk. That may be your very bag, one that you love and cherish.

I have learned over the years how divisive an issue this is. I could post something completely inflammatory and offensive about the papacy, Oprah AND gay marriage and it wouldn’t get people as riled up as my criticizing their choice in footwear. I realize, of course, that no amount of my curmudgeonly grousing is going to change your mind any more than your presumably valid reasons for wearing shower shoes to a wedding are going to change mine.

Clearly, your shower shoes don’t go with my crankypants.

5 thoughts on “A Post About A Most Delicate And Sensitive Matter

  1. Where on the spectrum do the leather-strapped, suede footbed(ded?) but rubber-soled “flip-flops” fall? If they would be ruined beyond repair by wearing them in the shower, does that make them the un-shower shoes?

    I’m asking…for a friend. Yeah.

  2. I am with you on the flip-flops. I rally against them the first warm day of the year, and it does not stop until the first snow hits. My flip-flops were used in some of the nastiest showers in Eastern Europe, and will now ocassionally protect my feet from sand-scorch. That was their intention. Period.

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