Thursday, August 13, 2009

Get Off My Feet

From time to time some friend of a friend looms out of the darkness and offers to do things to my feet.

"I'm a reflexologist. Would you like me to work on your feet?"

"No, thank you."

I don't actually mean "No, thank you."

I actually mean "If you come anywhere near my feet, I may kill you."

The idea of someone messing about with my feet fills me with - - well, it's hard to explain what. Except the desire to kill them, swiftly.

Other women seem to pay their feet more attention than I do to mine. They attack them with pumice stones or Vim or suchlike. They varnish their toe nails. They wear strappy sandals that show off these elegantly painted toe nails. They wear expensive high heeled shoes to draw attention to their feet and to make themselves look tall and elegant.

I have an arrangement with my feet. I don't bother them, and they don't bother me. I keep them clean and that's it. I have never in my life varnished my toe nails and I won't be starting any time soon. My feet get hidden in trainers, mostly, and sometimes in walking boots, and very occasionally in a pair of smart shoes if I'm going to a smart-shoes kind of occasion. I wore some very nice smart shoes for Olli and Gareth's wedding. Haven't worn them since, mind.

Not that there is anything wrong with my feet - their untroubled life means that they are pretty well unblemished. They are a size 6, which is on the large side, but that is because my father's feet were size elevens. I have mentioned before that when he worked as a coal miner during the War, he had the biggest pair of boots on the Yorkshire coalfield. Luckily, my Mum's tiny size two-and-a-halfs evened my feet out so they are fairly large, but not too large.

Because I've never squashed my feet into stilettos or such, they don't have bunions and they aren't a strange shape like some people's feet. Sometimes I see women of my age and their feet are shoe-shaped because of having been squashed up for years.

It's not that I'm proud of all this, really. I would quite like to have the ability to look good in high heels - - but I'd just look as if I was about to fall over. Which would, indeed, be the case.

Because I'm diabetic, I have to keep a special eye on my feet. Diabetes coats every bit of you in too much sugar - - and it can get deposited in your feet, and never get out, and the circulation to your feet can get very poor, and you can get ulcers which don't heal, and this can lead to you having your leg amputated. As did, indeed, happen to the Communist.

But keeping an eye on them is as far as it goes. I'm not going to start mollycoddling them now, they're not used to it. Every year I have them checked to see if the pulses in them are good, and touch wood they always have been, so that means that my circulation is working well.

Ironically, my inability to wear fashionable shoes has probably done me good in the long-term. I don't know why I don't like my feet, really. I should be nicer to them as I find them very useful, and I do tend to take them for granted.

But I still don't like them: I feel that they're a long way from the rest of me, and not quite part of me.


Blogger Silverback said...

You think of your feet as being 'a long way from you'.

Dream on !

7:16 pm  
Anonymous Milo said...

Can't remember whether I posted this link on your blog before or not but this Times article is hilarious and so on the money. All about feet and other ugly bits the British insist on revealing as soon as the sun comes out.


"Why a woman would want to draw attention to her nasty little bunioned trotters on a night out, I just cannot imagine. I doubt they do. It's just that these are shoes designed by men who are not into women, and cannot bear to think too much about any part of them more intimate than their feet."

8:10 pm  
Blogger Yorkshire Pudding said...

What is it with stiletto heels Daphne? In an age when western women profess to be liberated, many still conform to sexist fashion expecations which see thousands strutting about painfully and awkwardly on high heels. When I select a pair of shoes there are two vital requirements. Firstly, they must have rubber soles - not leather or composite - because rubber provides the best grip and I may find myself walking on icy pavements or wet corridors. I don't want to fall over because of a stupid shoe choice. Secondly they must be comfortable - fairly wide fitting and the right size - 11 1/2 - because I may walk five or six miles in them and I don't want blisters or sores. There's no way you will ever find me strolling out to the shops in a pair of high heels. It would damn well hurt!

11:27 pm  
Blogger Daphne said...

Silverback - - what can I say other than fair cop, guv? Succinctly put and funny!
Milo - hurrah for Giles Coren, I'm totally with him, great article, thank you!
YP - I totally agree and I'm glad I won't find you wandering around in high heels the next time I visit Sheffield.

12:40 am  
Blogger Kim said...

I hate my feet and I know why, I hate all feet, my step dad has really disgusting and smelly feet and used to walk around bear foot, or worse have his feet on show when I was trying to eat, I can't even lick one of those foot shaped lollies :s

but I paint my toe nails to make my self believe that if they look pretty I might like them more :p
I never wear sandals or anything that would show off my toes so its only for me

now I just like to experiment with them, no one ever guesses that underneath my big clumpy hiking boots that I always wear a manicured and painted toenails :p

Mind you I do have bunions from wearing shoes that were too small for me when I was a kid


1:10 am  
Blogger WendyCarole said...

And there was me thinking I was th eonly one who never painted their toe nails. My feet get hidden away too. But then so so does most of the rest of me LOL. A hint of sun and I burn

9:02 am  
Blogger Kim said...

I have the same problem, small amount of sun and a burn, problem is I can't stand heat either so I can't wear a jumper, so I never left the house during summer, now I have the answer

Factor 50 sun lotion from Asda (if you go for the kids ones you can smell pretty too)

It means now I don't burn my elbows get rather freckly instead :p


11:57 am  
Blogger Daphne said...

WendyCarole and Kim - - yes, I burn too, because my grandma was a redhead and selfishly passed on her easily-burned skin without the glorious red hair (at least you have the hair, Kim!)

12:01 am  

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