Realizations in Shoe Shopping

“It’s really hard to walk in a single woman’s shoes — that’s why you sometimes need really special shoes!” -Carrie Bradshaw, SATC

Finding an excuse to buy shoes relatively easy, especially when the seasons are changing, and more importantly, Nordstroms’ Half Yearly Sale (although, I feel like Nordstroms is perpetually advertising and promoting this “Half Yearly Sale” which confuses me to no end). Anyways, my first bout at good old Nordys resulted in only one pair of shoes. My second trip, just a day later, resulted in 3 new pairs, and one pair ordered online. As if it wasn’t embarrassing enough to have made 2 trips within 48 hours… the salesman who helped me the first time, spotted me the second day, and exchanged a sad “oh-youre-a-shoe-addict-i-shouldve-pressed-you-to-buy-more-yesterday” type stare. Thanks a lot sales associate.

Which made me realize, WHY is it that sales associates in womens shoes are ALWAYS all men?! Well groomed, well dressed, nice shoes, typically attractive. Why? I came to a few conclusions myself:

  1. They’re all gay obviously. They only hire gay men. No straight man can be THAT attractive, THAT well dressed, and know THAT much about shoes. Out of these 3 things, youre usually lucky to get one of them in a guy. If you have 2/3 of these things in your man, well CONGRATS! He’s a keeper! Or he might actually be gay. Your call.
  2. These attractive, well groomed, well dressed men (gay or straight), all have foot fetishes. Simple as that. Yeah, think about THAT next time you let them slide the shoe onto your bare foot.
  3. These men just really want to work at the Womens shoe department to pick up on women trying on shoes.

So something inside me tells me to go with #3. These men just use their jobs to pick up women. DUH! And its smart, its like they can weed out their women too – “oh, she’s trying THOSE on, not my type then”. That being said, I love messing around and making them actually work for their commission. Little do they know when they approach me to ask if they can help me, I’ll give them 4 different pairs of shoes and ask to try each one of them on in 2 different sizes and maybe a different color… you know, just in case. And seeing them come back with 10 different boxes, all calm and composed always catches me off guard too. Dammit, I thought I could fluster them. But no! These male sales associates are always so calm and composed. I don’t understand it. Attractive (usually), well dressed, nice shoes, and calm and composed. Damn.

But my experience the other day gave me a whole new perspective. Having walked through the shoe department, and awkwardly making eye contact with the associate that helped me the previous day, another attractive, composed, sales man approached me and asked  if he could help me. I did my typical stunt: “These, these and these, in size 7 and 7.5 in all of them please, oh and this pair in the other color you have as well”. He returned, all calm and composed in that “I have my shit together” fashion, and soon enough I decided on the 4 pairs I’d buy. When he walked to the register he told my sister, who was with me “I’m so nervous and flustered, there are so many people here that want so much, I’m so frazzled”. At the register, when he left to find a mate for one of my shoes, my sister told me what he’d said… and then I realized… male sales associates, despite how smooth they seem, are REGULAR HUMAN BEINGS! And here, all this time, I thought they were obedient, Edward-Cullen-like robots that were nice to look at and obeyed every command. OMG, he’s a real person… he gets flustered to.. and he probably hates his job, and he probably doesn’t even like feet, or have a foot fetish.  And that’s when I fell in love with a Nordstrom’s Womens Shoe department sales associate. JUST KIDDING. But I did realize that 50% of these sales associates probably hate their jobs, go home, take off their nice outfits, unbutton their pants, and eat fried chicken in front of the TV. Oh, you don’t do that? Oh. Well….

Anyways, if you happen to have the answer to the question as to why Nordstroms women’s shoe sales associates are typically men… inquiring minds want to know.


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