This has been in and out of my mind since last summer's photo of a group of young ladies at the White House. Their footwear caused a small stir in some circles.
Let me put it bluntly to start: Ladies, if you are interested in a man who is goal-oriented, driven, and has high standards of achievement for himself, forego the flip-flops.
Now that summer is upon us, we will be subject to the fashion whims hidden over the fall. The boots are out, the open-toes footwear is in. Flip-flops are horrible.
Why is that? First, we must recognize that we send a message with our appearance. Whether it is a dirty T-shirt, an elegant wristwatch, Birkenstocks or pajama bottoms (shudder), everything we wear tells others not who we are, but who we want them to think we are. This fact is non-negotiable. They also (obviously) impact our attractiveness.
Flip-flops are negative in both regards. First, attractiveness impact. Ladies, shoes that are flat, in a heeled world, make your legs look stumpy. Sorry, it's true. If you don't believe me, walk over to your full length mirror barefoot and stand there, looking at your lower leg. Now stand on your toes. Now go back down. See? Flip flops make you less physically attractive.
They also send a message. The message is "I am lazy." You may think the particular color and design is cute, but it's the same as plain white. "Lazy." "Not concerned enough with looking good to make an effort."
On the one hand, many ladies will claim that they "do it for comfort." This, of course, is nonsense. The time and energy spent doing their hair and makeup, as well as choosing that blouse and those capri pants make it clear that it was important enough to look good that you went through all the effort...but the failure to properly accessorize with a nice, heeled open toe sandal of some type says "too lazy to make the extra effort."
Of course, you can forego most of the above and go with the full "slob" ensemble seen on college campuses and in malls - t-shirt, rumpled pajama bottoms and flip-flops. At least then you know you look like a bum. However, to hamstring yourself by throwing on a quick pair of pink flip-flops with a little flower on the thong destroys all the work you did - at least for discerning men.
Don't get me wrong - this isn't a value judgment or a condemnation of character. What it is - a recitation of a truthful observation, that as the clothes make the man, so the shoes make the woman - at least in the eyes of the observer.
Mrs. Hammer is not high filutin', snobby, or a fashion freak. However, she would not go out in flip-flops unless it is to the mailbox or the back yard. Those ladies who want a man who doesn't care what you wear on your feet - well, you will get them. Just don't be surprised when you want to go out with them, and they wear the same grungy outfits they always do. Why? Those who don't care about what other wear start by not caring what they wear themselves.
I'm not shallow, but I recognize that character exhibits itself in many ways. As I tell my kids and young people I get to talk to, "If he is nice to you but mean to the waiter, he is not a nice person." In our relationship seeking, we have to look for clues into the character of those we observe. Discipline in one area is indicative of discipline in others, and laziness in one area is indicative of laziness in others.
So, ladies, put the flip-flops back in the closet and go grab a $9.99 set of open toed sandals with at least an inch and a half of heel. Men of high standards notice footwear, but we can't tell the difference between Prada and Buster Brown.