The Skinny: Shoe to kill

One month later, and I can finally walk without Band-Aids on my heels. I’d almost forgotten what it was like.

In mid-October I attended a friend’s wedding. It had been my birthday a few weeks earlier, when I treated myself to a new pair of black leather dress shoes. The wedding was the first time I’d done much walking in them. I parked the car, and my girlfriend and I walked a few blocks to the Salt Lake Temple. However, I realized something had fallen out of my pocket on the walk over. We retraced our steps all the way back to the car, found what I had dropped, then walked back to Temple Square.

“Man, these shoes are still really stiff,” I thought to myself. The backs of my heels felt raw. Still, I soldiered on.

Fast forward a few hours, right after the wedding, and my heels suddenly felt much worse than raw. The pain bordered on excruciating. I tried to walk gracefully, but my gait was robotic as I desperately tried to keep my shoes from rubbing my heels. Not that I was looking for sympathy — my girlfriend was wearing leather high heels, without any socks. I must’ve looked like such a lightweight. But with the wedding reception a few hours away, the wedding day was far from over. My heels needed some Band-Aids, and quick.

Her grandma lived close by, so we swung by in search of Band-Aids. Grandma had an ample supply, including various thick bandage pads. It was time to assess the damage. I removed my shoes and pulled my socks down. Things didn’t look good. My birthday shoes had stripped large chunks of skin clean off my heels. Oof. Copious amounts of Neosporin and bandages were applied.

We still had a fair amount of walking to do that day. Things felt far better with the bandages, but it still hurt to walk. In the weeks since, I have gone through more Band-Aids and Neosporin than I ever expected. When I look in men’s lifestyle magazines and see models wearing leather dress shoes without any socks, I’m baffled — do models have bionic heels? What is their secret?

All the while, those birthday shoes have been sitting in my closet. They look amazing, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t scared to put them on again.

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