WARNING: Shallow post alert.
Shanghaiist has a bunch of family who live in Honolulu. That means we have to (poor us) visit The Islands on a regular basis. While footwear in Hawaii generally consists of two items — flip-flops or nothing at all — we have noticed a disturbing trend over the past few years: More people are wearing these hideous inventions. They are called Crocs, and they are severely ugly. There are are bunch of Crocs clones out there now, too — because somehow, like a colorful Clay Aiken of molded rubber, Crocs have become popular.
Crocs looks like orthopedic shoes designed for the Netherlandish. At first we always assumed the people we saw wearing them were nurses, or the children of nurses, because nurses have a long, proud history of wearing repellent footwear. But then we realized there was a nurse shortage, and something far more frightful was afoot. The fad is spreading, too. We visited the southeastern United States recently, and Crocs (the shoes, not the reptiles) were everywhere. We always thought we were safe from the trend here in Shanghai, but our worst fears appear to be realized. Our first spotting was at City Diner. Then, another one outside the Ritz-Carlton. Fine, we thought, a couple isolated incidents — likely nurses from World Link or American tourists. Then we saw this photo on Flickr and we almost cried.
Never again will we be able to look at people’s shoes in Shanghai. Because if we ever see someone wearing Crocs combined with, horror of horrors, those awful ankle pantyhose, that will be the day we are forced to pack our bags and leave.
We’re sure Crocs are comfortable. And we have no problem if you wear them in the privacy of your own home. Perhaps some of you choose to wear them because you know they are ugly — kind of like the ironic mustache for the feet. But be careful, this is the camera phone age. Anything you do can be digitally documented for eternity (or until the cyber terrorists take over). Crocs are going to be one of those shameful moments of fashion history that prompt people to cringe when looking at old photos and say, “Can you believe we used to wear those?”
Don’t say we didn’t warn you. But also take our advice with a handful of salt. We admit to a history of footwear bigotry — we once broke up with a girl because she wore white KEDS (and just looking at that web page — which includes at least one photo of KEDS and stirrup pants — is enough to give us nightmares for weeks).
Photo from Mike Chen.