Girlfriends, I am MAD. I am boiling with righteous indignation. And it’s all caused by a pair of shoes. A pair of comfort shoes, to be precise. A pair of the PARAGON comfort shoes, to push that precision to its ultimate conclusion.
You’re right, I’m talking about BRIKENSTOCKS.
Let me back up a bit. When I first started shoeblogging (some two and a half years ago) I was all preoccupied with comfort AND style. I was trying to find the happy medium between 4″ stilettos and fugly Birkenstocks–which means neither end of the spectrum was a-ok by me. I’ve been documenting my search all these years, with some spectacular successes and failures along the way. But never, ever, would I have considered buying the stocky, ungainly Birks, the staple of Women Who Just Don’t Care Anymore, in my book.
Except… well… there was something about their molded footbed that seemed very alluring, especially with my foot condition (plantar fasciitis), which requires generous arch support for my high arches and a comfy heel cup. I do crave comfort, after all, and the brand takes pride in being “anatomically correct.” Everybody is wearing them, and even The New York Times covered their (unholy) appeal. Even Heidi Klum went ahead and bejeweled them and sold them for triple the price. And then I saw one of the Olsen twins in the Gizeh, one of their more popular styles. That kind of did it for me. The evidence was overwhelming and I started to crack. “Surely,” I mused, “I could use a pair of these to walk the doggie in the summertime.” I was obsessing over it and spent an embarrassing amount of time trying to find a style that was appealing to me. In the end, I settled on the same Gizeh, in yellow:
I had been feeling the love for the color yellow, so I felt extra-justified in getting these (Color! Gap! In! My! Shoe! Closet!), plus Sierra Trading Post had some super-duper sale in which these ended up to be 60% off the original price.
And so! Yesterday I took them out for a spin, so to speak–a 2-hr errand in which I walked for probably 1-1.5 miles and drove around for the rest of the time.
And I came home with BLISTERS.
Let me repeat that: my SUPER-COMFY-ANATOMICALLY-CORRECT OPEN-TOED, OPEN-HEELED BIRKENSTOCKS GAVE ME BLISTERS.
Where, you may wonder. Where could you POSSIBLY get blisters from a breezy thong.
Well, it’s not where you think–right between the toes. Nah. It’s in my soles, right underneath the balls of the feet.
Needless to say, I was schlepping pretty badly by the end of my errand run and really regretting the day I bought into the Birki hype.
Let me assure you, they ARE the correct size. Any bigger and I would have been wearing boats. Any smaller and I couldn’t have fit in comfortably in that molded footbed. By any measure, that was the right size for me. I’m guessing they went a little overboard with the molding and the support in that particular area. Some people may need that kind of support, but guess what? That’s right, I don’t!
So now I have blisters. And now I’m mad because I feel duped. Either that, or I have really freaky feet (though, um… I managed to NOT GET BLISTERS ON MY SOLES pretty much all my life).
I’m going to wear something really well-padded today to help me through the day. Moon boots, perhaps?