I don’t consider myself stylish.
I wear mismatched bowties, fractioned pants, plaid-on-plaid, asymmetrical shoes… I’m actually quite fond of my eclectic wardrobe of aloof monstrosity. Hell, I’m writing this post from within a slanket. But my puffy coats, German pins and Goodwill blazers are nothing in comparison to this. I have a camo hat with my name emblazoned it, yet toward the Croc I have no mercy. No understanding. Down my nose do I now look, for I am stylish fury.
Because these are not shoes. They are foam abominations. They are recycled Fisher Price baby toys, massaged and moistened into a foot-sponge for the foolish. Before they leave the lot, every “shoe” is clearly stabbed repeatedly by the workers as an apology to the universe. With every sickening squish, the mushy cushions claim revenge. They are enemy of life, anathema incarnate.
Also, they’re tacky.
Few refute my claims. I did my research, I read the style blogs and surfed the Pinterests. Even the most ardent croc defenses begin with admissions:
- Kat: Renowned as the hideous fashion choice of frumpy soccer moms and the guilty item you hide from friends in your closet, they’re known as clunky, ugly, and gross.
- Alison: I’ve always been someone who thought they were ugly and couldn’t imagine wearing them no matter how comfortable they were… I think we can all agree it’s not because they’re stunningly stylish.
- Samantha: It goes with out saying that Crocs should probably be given the most-unstylish-shoe-ever-invented award. They repulse me…
- Amy: I am the opposite of a Crocs supporter. I hate them. I think Crocs are really, really bad.
- Akilah: I understand that Crocs are the RoseArt crayons of shoes.
- The Mistress of the Dark (I assume her real name): The standard issue (crocs) are the most butt ugly creations I’ve ever seen in my life.
I’ll be addressing these brave women, piecing together a defense of this gelatinous foot plague. It’s going to be a long day.
Let’s start with the last, Ms. Of The Dark. As you might be able to guess, Mistress talks about the cute “shoes” outside the horrid standard issue. And here’s an actual, unfortunate screenshot.
But I went to the official Croc site, just to corroborate. I visited the men’s section first, the thought of purchase causing a brief shudder. And I suppose I could wear shoes that looked like this…
Kat, Akilah, and many others offered similar defenses, saying not all crocs are the icky vision many imagine. And I suppose there are almost-shoes in the Croc line. But I want to defend it all, not just the (still kinda tacky) regular shoe portion. Though I haven’t discussed what I discovered in women’s…
Let’s move to Kat. She, like many of her croc-apologist compatriots, feels guilty about liking them. But she’s also one of the many who, in a time of desperation, tried a Croc and was intoxicated by comfort.
“Oh. My. God,” she writes. “I put them on, and the pain melted away. They were so comfortable and so cushioned, and the little nubs rubbed away my aching pain. I finished the day out with a spring in my step and no throbbing pain at the end of the night.”
She had a mind-changing experience, and found more-normal looking Croc variants. She has since hidden her original pair, which she “refuses to acknowledge*.” Curious about that asterisk? Well…
“*In full disclosure, I do own a pair of the fleece lined gardening Crocs. I wear them dog walking in the freezing cold, because at 5am when it’s 10 degrees out, I don’t care what I look like as long as it’s warm. Don’t judge me.”
While Kat is escorted away, here’s Alison:
“So this past summer I was huge and pregnant and hot with swollen feet (and an aching back) that desired a little more support than what my beloved flip-flops could provide… Let’s just pretend I’m wearing (Crocs) ironically, mmkay?”
It’s hard to argue against the comfort of pregnant women. I’d give her a pass, if only she didn’t decide to wear them “ironically.” The use of “mmkay” is also unfortunate. Hard time for her, NEXT!
“Here’s the thing, I hate to admit it, but they are kinda the perfect kid shoe,” claims Samantha. “No ties, no velcro, (my son) can slip those bad boys on and we’re out the door. I can credit those shoes to at least an extra fifteen minutes a day… It’s upsetting but at the same time an extra fifteen minutes a day for a mom is like an hour in regular time, so I guess it’s kinda worth it. Although I say that very reluctantly.”
I appreciate the reluctance, and the admittance to being a children’s “shoe.” You sound sane, so I’ll give you a… wait, your blog is called thehipstermom.com? … NEXT!
Whereas Samantha is sane, Amy is a little… weird. She talks for a while about how disliking Crocs is akin to disliking gay marriage, and something about disagreements and consensus and people being people… but she began the post with Croc-hate, so her heart’s in the right place. She concludes with:
“And if you want to wear Crocs, do it. Be proud. If nothing else, be comfortable. I won’t ever like your shoes, but that’s ok. They are your shoes. Your choice.”
I appreciate the empathy and respect. And even with the blog titled “amyhasbangs.wordpress.com,” I’ll give her a pass. Sadly, the gay marriage analogy brought my feeble mind to a logical breaking point. She asked me to stretch my imagination, and I respond with NEXT!
So finally we come to Akilah. I wouldn’t say Akilah offered anything the other Croc-rockers overlooked. She mentions the medical profession, and how Crocs are good for medics and lifeguards. She mentions less-conspicuous styles, comfort, the horrifying mascot. But I’ve made her last for a reason. That reason, ladies and gentlemen, is Georg.
Akilah wrote this post on September 20th, 2012. She had no comments until 19 days ago, when… oh just read it:
“Georg mentions shoes, but I can’t see said shoes. I have desperate want to see said shoes,” I said out loud, entranced. And then I downloaded the picture and… oh, here:
Georg… I love you, sir. I am not feeling the male ballet flats, but you are a rock star. You are bold. You are life. You are love. But if I just look at your lower half, I’m getting old lady legs. It’s weird, and I love you. But now I must move on.
I found other Croc-defenders. Specifically, three who begin and end with (ick) Croc-love. I’ve relegated them here, post-Georg, since they are legally insane.
Aley likes that Crocs prevent people from talking to her. She calls them a “catcall repellent,” claiming a feminist revolution. Alrighty then:
“Crocs are also something like the sartorial equivalent of Nickelback,” Aley writes. “It’s trendy to hate them. Admittedly, they suck in some ways— they gave me a rash on my foot once— but they’re also kind of endearing.”
Blogger Litigious Mind writes a screed against Croc haters (she uses the word NEWSFLASH without restraint), saying people who dislike Crocs are crazier than Croc-wearers. But Kimberli steals the show with this partial list of Croc-pros:
- Bright Colors
- Good for diabetics
- If you get marooned on an island; you can eat them.
Not to mention, they will shrink if left in the sun. So on your island, you can eat your “shoes” in raisin form. Can you do that with sneakers? I THINK NOT!
But you know, I’m taking a page from Kimberli. Here’s every reason I can think of that Crocs are not unholy deathspawn:
- Some not-ugly styles
- Alleviates pain
- Good for pregnant women
- Good for diabetics
- Good for kids
- Good for medics and disaster areas
- Hating shoes is weird
- Bright colors
- Edible, in I assume only the most desperate situations where all other options are hopeless and you are willing to give up your humanity for sustenance
- Georg likes them
To conclude, we have the right to hate things. I reserve the right to hate things. But belittling people because of their… shoes is kinda ridiculous. It took all my strength to not put that word in quotation marks, but I’ll attempt to grow.
I’ll never wear the things, but I can respect people. I don’t want to belittle those who have a different style from me, since doing that’d leave me alone with my slanket. Using all my strength, I can empathize. A mile isn’t too far to walk, even in hypothetic Crocs.
Your, what you call, a “ugly shoed person” is good I think.