Friday, December 30, 2016
Uuuuugh, UGG! I hate you. But I really do love you. How long have these wooly mammoths been on the market? Going on three decades now? And still I can't resolve my relationship status with Uggs. When girls in my high school were trotting around from class to class in shorts and Uggs, I swore then I would never wear them. They were officially on the 'Not On Your Life' list of shoes I'd rather die than wear. Birkenstocks had solo'ed on that list up until that point in my young life.
Growing up in Southern California, I found it insulting to our incredible weather to wear Uggs. They were utterly unnecessary in a climate that on a severely cold night reached the upper 30 degree range. And that was rare. Aside from giving you insta-cankles, they were just blobby and aesthetically so unflattering to any body shape other than matchstick-like planks. And like every other teenage girl, I of course, felt like a double-stuffed Oreo the majority of my youth. So of course, these were just viscerally rejected from Day 1.
A short two and a half decades later, like its counterpart on my "Don't Insult Shoes By Calling Them Shoes" list, Uggs and Birkenstocks were holding strong. They were a Winter staple no matter what coast you lived in or what the actual temperature was. Holding strong to my "shoe ethic", I had never entertained the idea of even trying a pair on. I had no desire to do so.
As life kept happening, and I continued into adulthood, shoes were sometimes not my ultimate and first priority and focus in life. Work, relationships, aging, and all that comes with that would occasionally take precedent. And when I least expected it, Uggs were back in my face. A friend I came upon was such a devotee to her Uggs. She swore by them October through February of every year. She was a Disney Freak meaning she had one of those super deluxe crazy expensive annual passes and she would only wear Uggs to get her through all that park hopping and Main Street walking.
On rare occasion, we found ourselves at The Grove shopping and she insisted on getting me into the Ugg store. I politely agreed and even complimented some of the styles by saying, "oh, these aren't as bad" with a half smile. She begged me to try on a pair so that I would understand. Being a committed shopping partner, I finally agreed. And. OH. MY. GOD.
My first pair of Classic Shorts in Black came home with me. I had no idea you could wear clouds on your feet. The utterly soft pillowy-cushiony-deliciousness was like having my feet in mother's womb. I instantly handed over my credit card like I was handing over my license thrilled that the bouncer thought I was too young to get into the bar. Color me blissful.
My friend passed away unexpectedly earlier this year from undetected cancer sadly. She found out when the stage 4 was more like stage 5. Truth be told, I have worn my Uggs less than 10 times since purchasing them sobered by the realization that they are still Uggs. I make it a habit to clean out my closets at least 4 times a year. I always have the conundrum of whether to keep them or get rid of them. I am confronted with my love/hate of Uggs. I put them in the 'Maybe' pile and ultimately, always put them back in my shoe closet. They make me and everyone else look like they have cankles. They are not "cute". They blobby. I rarely feel the weather justifies the actual need to wear them. However, when I do, I still feel like I'm walking on clouds and think of her.
Dedicated to V.