Monthly Archives: May 2009

Pain in the Pumps

Pain in the Pumps


In less than a decade I’ve advanced from strutting in stilettos to longing for a pair of crepe soled loafers. My feet have been permanently altered by years of fashion following. I was dumb enough to fall for the hype that suggested “hot” women wear high heels. Believe me, there’s no truth to this. I’m overheated right now, and I’m barefoot.

Men supposedly get a lift from looking at gals who’re wearing three-inch pumps. But I’ve concluded the only guys who notice women’s shoes are ones who want to borrow them.

All this agony my toes have suffered never brought me an ounce of male attention—other than from a few podiatrists.

In my youth, I wore spike heels to make my legs look shapely. Those shoes might have worked great for my calves, but they turned my feet into heifer hooves.

I tell you all this to explain why I purchased a promising medical aid that I’ll refer to here as “Torture Toes.”

Supposedly, after wearing these devices for several hours each day, my feet will return to their natural shape, to the way they looked before I forced them into countless days of confinement in pointy-toe, elevated footwear that made me prance like a pony and left me hobbling like a lame horse.


When my toe spreaders arrived, I excitedly put them on. I’d ordered a size “S”, which I thought stood for “Small” but must have indicated “Sasquatch.”

Twenty seconds after I’d smashed my feet into these miracle cures, I lost all sensation below my ankles. Minutes later, when the feeling returned, I felt like someone was ripping me apart, one Little Piggy at a time! If militaries ever discover this product they’ll use it instead of “waterboarding.”

Soon after I’d fitted my toe spreaders in place a searing pain radiated up both legs. I chewed my fingernails. Then I bit my cuticles. Right then I understood why trapped animals sometimes free themselves by gnawing off an appendage.

“Ou-ou-ouch!” I screamed. “I can’t take this another second!”

My husband, who was seated comfortably next to me in his reading chair, looked up from a novel. Evidencing his keen observation skills, he asked, “What’s wrong?”

“These things are KILLING me!” I bounced my heels on the ottoman in front of me, keeping time with the throbbing pulse I could now feel in both knees.

Ever the caring spouse, hubby replied, “Don’t worry. I’ll take them off of you if you pass out.”

“Oh, you are too kind,” I said. “Why don’t YOU try wearing them?”

“I don’t need to wear them,” he offered dryly. “I’ve never worn high heels.”

“Well, Mr. Smarty-feet, I bet you couldn’t make it 20 minutes in these things.”

“Sure I could,” he said. “Give ‘em here.”

I released my tootsies from their imprisonment and handed over the challenge.

Wise Guy claimed the Torture Toes were too big for him too. But eventually he managed, with my help, to cram them onto his superior feet.

Moments later, I noticed him eyeing the bedroom clock. “How long has it been?” he asked.

“Not twenty minutes,” I replied. I shot him a victory smile. “Hurts, doesn’t it?”

“It tingles a bit.”

To prove his point, hubby wore the Torture Toes exactly 26 minutes—just long enough to beat my time. Then he took them off and declared, “The numbness finally stopped.”

I located the Torture Toes carrying pouch and read the attached instructions. “If numbness or burning occurs, discontinue use.”

It’s a shame stilettos don’t carry the same warning.


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