Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Shoes, the PTA and Moral Dilemmas

I included the PTA in the title, because I will bore you with PTA talk. You've been warned. Proceed at your own risk.

I love impractical, overpriced fashion-y crap. And I get (really, really get) that Manolos, Jimmy Choos, Louboutins and their brethren are not actually exclusive brands. They can be bought in malls the world over. They’re high end mass with somewhat better materials and the best aspirational marketing money can buy.

I understand that I’m being hoodwinked by a talented marketing team into coveting $500 shoes.
But it doesn’t, somehow, stop me from coveting them.

And for whatever reason, all fall I have been yearning to see a pair of shoes that is crazy-fabulous enough to make me smile every time I put them on (besides the ones in my closet. Those conveniently don't count at the moment.). And yet, really, any shoe that is crazy-fabulous enough to gratify me won't be casual enough, in Seattle, to wear very many places.

Although... I do have a wedding to go to next week.

I was downtown on Friday because my skinny, skinny boy needs sweatpants with an elastic waistband (as well a tie so that pants actually stay on) and so I made the trek to Old Navy, the most likely source of inexpensive and relatively durable boy-wear that is acceptable to both of us. He grows too fast for me to be overly concerned with durability. I know! My life is exciting. And hard to keep up with. Anyway, I totally struck out. Someone had ravaged the entire sweatpants section, and there was, apparently, nothing left. So sad.

On my way out, Barneys sang a siren song to me (it’s across the street, and the red awnings may actually have tractor beams in them, pulling shoe-susceptible women towards the doors). I went in, fell into a trance over the shoes; the nice young man in the shoe department materialized, and... the next thing I knew, I was admiring my feet in a pair of sky high fuschia Louboutins. They were pretty comfortable (obviously, that's for heels).

I left without them, because they are prohibitively expensive (which generally goes without saying for Louboutins). The price for a pair of Louboutins would cover a month of preschool. But… my children are in public school. We aren’t paying tuition right now. Granted, our PTA is always fundraising, since it pays the salaries of our music and art teachers, and as a school, we also pony up a substantial sum to the district so that our class sizes can stay below 25 and so we can have single-grade classrooms (are you asleep yet? Yawning? I’ll keep trying to get you there with drier and drier PTA details). But still, my point is: no tuition. Crazy fun sky-high Louboutins. Classy, they aren’t. Three plus inch heels in fuschia may be glamorous, fun and striking (and again, kind of crazy), but tasteful? Noooo. Still. Ridiculously fab. Happy-making in their absurdity.

And yet… our PTA needs money (gah. Why does that keep popping back in my head? It's like some sort of... conscience. Yuck.). Fantastic, impractical, absurdly priced shoes? Or deserving public school programs that my children benefit directly from (and LOVE)? Ugh. Put that way, it sounds like such a simple, straightforward moral choice. By people who clearly don’t understand the moral value of crazy-fun shoes. Which would be... minimal. But still.
So, the pictures are of my still-unfinished dining room wall (I just keep not getting to it, although I'm thinking tonight might be a good night to crack the can of paint and finish the white flowers off) and a rapid crayon drawing of the coveted shoe. It doesn't really convey the ridiculous fabulous-ness of the shoe but... I used the kids' crayons in a little bit of a hurry, since I have to head up to the worthy public elementary school to help children with their reading. See? I'm noooble. I help kids learn to read. Sadly, not while wearing Louboutins (my life: haaaard). Although, if I wore them, I think I would end up stepping on some poor kid's hand and shish-kebobbing it (you spend a lot of time sitting on floors in elementary schools). Which would get blood on the shoes.

Also, I had some weirdness with posting, so I deleted try #1 and tried again.


Magua said...

"I understand that I’m being hoodwinked by a talented marketing team into coveting $500 shoes."


claudia said...

i just left a super long comment with a full description of my shoes. in detail. it disappeared.

but i have 2 louboutins, prada, jimmy choo, blahniks. some are old. some were from ebay. some i sold or gave to my step-kid...

i swear it was a great comment. oh well. we're all just grains of sand. time to drink wine.

Meg said...

Magua: (traitorous, black-hearted, Magua. I'd give you a better quote, but I don't know where I put my Cooper books. I might have shipped them out to make space on the bookshelves). Um... these aren't $500 apiece. But. Well. Some are. Despite, er, not being sold seperately.

Claudia: I wish I could tell you why it vanished into the ether. I don't preview comments, so... hmm. Fancy shoes are pretty fun, aren't they? Despite the moral dilemma it leaves me in vis-a-vis the PTA. I think you're right. It's a good time for a little wine.

chris said...

You painted that yourself? I'm amazed. Anyone who can paint like that deserves those shoes.

Meg said...

Chris- thank you. I am totally going to work that angle ("See? Schmancy painters deserve schmancy shoes!"), although... it still doesn't really mean the PTA needs less money.