Stop! Drop the plush armadillo sandals and step away from yourself. Now think about the unbelievably important decision you're making right now. It’s summer, and choosing a pair of kicks involves more than just deciding which ones happen to look best under the flickering fluorescent lighting at DSW. Do they pair well with every outfit you own? How will they hold up in an impromptu water balloon fight? And, most importantly, do they propel you to a level of coolness achieved only once in history, by a man named Fonzie? Here are some options to rest your feet on, and what they say about you:
Crocs. The Croc wearer wisely foresees the possibility that their run to the 7-11 might somehow turn into a rugged hike up a mountain. Why expend energy on carrying a second pair of shoes around? The Croc's rugged, ventilated closed-toe rubber says, “I am taking a vacation from fashion and don’t care what anyone thinks.”
Mandals. Also known as the retired man’s shoes. Your mandals are proof that you're thinking ahead—decades ahead, to a magical time where you'll spend your days in a Tommy Bahama button-down and gold chains, reminiscing about the days when twerking was a thing, and mandals were the shoes you laughed at your dad for wearing.
Flip-Flops. Flip-flops are the featured instrument in the soundtrack of summer. Considering it's the least convenient shoe for any non-sand-related activity, the wearer of the flip-flop is truly committed to the lazy summer experience. But beware the flip-flop's other, dreaded name: It's inevitable that shortly after you exit your mom's minivan and run to meet your friends on the beach, the summer breeze will carry her departing words to your and everyone else’s ears: “YOU FORGOT YOUR THONGS!!”
Gladiator Sandals. Since opposites attract, the fearless wearer of these time-consuming shoes will certainly fall in love with, and be eternally embarrassed by, a Croc-wearing dude. Ironically for the polished, self-sacrificing gladiator, her stylish sandals are guaranteed to leave behind a completely insane sunburn.
Bare Feet. You throw your shoes out the car window on the last day of school, and don't buy another pair till back-t0-school shopping. If you live in the country, your rural bare-footedness evokes bucolic, Mark Twain–style visions. If you live in the city, you're the kind of person who others avert their eyes from on the bus.
Soccer Sandals. You appear to have a sponsorship from Adidas. Your sandals' three white stripes extend from your foot, up your track pants, over your zip-up, and back down the other side. Loud and clear, these sandals say, “Any pair of sandals would work fine after a game. But these are called soccer sandals, and as a soccer player, I must own them.”
What are your preferred summer shoes?