These flats represent the person I would like to be.
Tomorrow, I’m taking them to the consignment store, because I think they might pay me for them. They’re new, barely worn, vibrant, and, I suppose I should add, terribly uncomfortable. Feet-blistering. I am supposed to keep wearing them mindlessly, because they are pretty, and I am twenty-one, and should be lacking enough in foresight to wear the soles out of them before I dare even think about giving them away.
So I took a pretty picture, since the sun outside my window is shining and since I want them to trick people into believing that I am free because I wear bright red shoes. Maybe they’ll think I liked to go dancing in them. Or that I took walks in the park or at the farmer’s market wearing them, holding hands with an equally pretty and free date, and that my laugh sounds like a wind chime or that my feet never bleed.
I wore these shoes once. For an hour. To a dance for women majoring in STEM. It was uneventful. I went home. My feet hurt. They were kind of sweaty, too, because with these kinds of flats, you can’t wear socks, and so instead of having some level of absorption, you just end up with slippery feet and regret.
Maybe that’s why I liked taking a picture of these shoes; because they’re a product of fantasy. Everything about them – their color, design, and lack of comfort suggests nothing but foot pain and impossibilities. And yet, they are so enticing. They seem like they possess a sort of life of their own. Like they can make my twenties as fun as I thought they would be. Like the act of wearing them could change me, ground up, and zap me into someone who would wear these shoes, happily and painlessly, with a giant glob of red lipstick. Like I am not someone who is just taking pictures of them, alone in my bedroom on a sunny spring afternoon.