Flip flops forever!

Flip flopsBy Lisa Sugarman

There are certain eventualities that I can handle easier than others. Stuff that happens to us sooner or later that maybe isn’t so easily digestible at first, but that I can always manage to choke down after I chew on it for a while.

Like, eventually, Daylight Savings comes, and we suck it up for a day or two, acclimate, and then move on. We might not be thrilled about it, but we deal with it. Or, eventually, when it’s time for the season finale of Sons of Anarchy, and I have to say adios to my super-sexy biker boys. I accept that I’m going to feel a little empty inside until the next season; but I can be patient.

What I cannot ever seem to get my mind around, though, no matter how hard I try (and I do try every single year), is that, eventually, I have to stop wearing my flip flops once the cold weather really hits. And that… that I can’t handle.

Look, I understand that the world follows a natural cycle—the seasons come, day turns to night; we switch from ice coffee to hot coffee. I get all that. But the giving up of the ability to let my toesies be free to walk about the world is just too damn painful, I’m sorry.

I know, I’m well aware that I’m being a baby. And that this is a very low-level problem in the grand scheme of problems. But I just can’t help myself. The way I see it, every once in a while, we’re allowed to be consumed by something stupid. And this, I believe, could be about as stupid as it gets. But to me, it’s a legitimate source of angst and sadness. It sounds ridiculous, yes. But this is a tough one for me.

And I happen to know, for a fact, that there are others out there just like me who take it directly on the chin when their favorite shoes have to be packed up and stored for the winter. (Yes, Tracy, I’m talking about you.)

Now I get that because I’ve chosen to live in a climate that supports all four seasons, I’ve automatically forfeited my ability to wear flip flops twelve months a year. And while I have given it some serious consideration, I’ve decided that I can’t, in good conscience, uproot my entire family and move to a consistently arid region where I can live, work, and possibly even sleep in flip flops. Because at the end of the day, it just wouldn’t be fair. Plus, both my daughters have a real penchant for boots, and to deprive them of the ability to wear and enjoy the full range of boot options available in the world would, in my opinion, be considered cruel and unusual punishment.

I guess at the end of the day you could probably file this “issue” I have somewhere under the Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) classification. Which, by the way, is a very real condition. But please don’t laugh at the acronym for the sake of the afflicted. Because, as ironic as the acronym is, the condition is very, very real.

For the record, SAD is an actual type of depression that usually comes on during the same season each year. In fact, if you’ve felt depressed during the last two or three winters consecutively but felt much better in spring and summer, then it’s entirely possible that you’ve got SAD. Uh, I mean, that you are sad. Ummm, maybe it’s the first one. Either way, you can probably relate to it on some level.

For me, though, my sadness is really pretty relegated to footwear. Flip flips in particular. And what I think it all boils down to, at least for me, is versatility, comfort, and freedom. And the loss of it during the winter.

Look, feet were meant to roam. Everybody knows that. We were all born shoeless and I honestly believe that the less encumbered we are in life, by things like laces and toe caps and vamps, the better. See, we walk through every inch of our life, so I believe that the best way to feel connected to the world around us is to be as close to the earth we’re walking on as possible. Plus, flip flips are just The Perfect Shoe. End of story. They go with everything, they’re super compact, relatively cheap, and the perfect accessory to any killer pedicure. And I just can’t let them go.

So when the time comes, as it always does every season when I cycle through the mourning period of parting ways with my little friends, I have a tough time rebounding.

Thanks for letting me vent. It helped ease the pain. Flip flops forever!

Lisa Sugarman lives in Marblehead, Massachusetts. Read and discuss all her columns at facebook.com/ItIsWhatItIsColumn. She is also the author of LIFE: It Is What It Is available on Amazon.com.

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