My wife, Jenni has been scratching her head (and banging it against the wall) over new developments from Crocs, the friendly, ugly shoe company. I was so fascinated from these new offerings that I had to go check it out for myself. Alas, the offerings that they have for men’s footwear are as ugly as ever. If I caught myself wearing these or these, I’d have to kick my own ass. And, with the squishy croslite(tm) that they are made of, it would be a solely unsatisfying experience (pun very much intended).
Life is simply too short to wear ugly shoes. That’s why most of my footwear will come from Nocona, Dan Post, and Moreschi. Granted, I don’t think that anyone should have to pay a million bucks to look like it. I haven’t paid retail prices for shoes since I was in junior high and didn’t know any better. (Ebay is your friend in this area.) Men’s shoes should be uniquely masculine, but they ought to look good as well. I like a pair of shoes that I can wear with a pair of jeans and a t-shirt all day, brush them off at home and put on my suit to go to a formal occasion.
Some people will say “But Crocs are so coooooooomfortable!” I like my shoes to wear and wear and wear. You get a well-made pair of shoes, take care of them, and they will be incredibly comfortable, and last for a long time. …And, they don’t look like a Nerf football. Who looks good with Nerf footballs on their feet? Nobody. I’ll tell you what, you put on your Nerf-looking garden clogs, and I’ll wear something more like these. We’ll wear them with jeans all day at work, or the mall, or the gun range or whatever. At the end of the day, we’ll brush them off and wear them with suits to a formal occasion in the evening. We’ll see how that goes over visually as a comparison. Once you finally kick them off in the evening, will your fee hurt? I don’t know. I’ve never worn Crocs (because I don’t want somebody’s dog to try to retrieve my foot to it’s owner). What I do know is that my fee will be fine.
I know that pretty much all of my shoes are artisan-made in the United States, Italy, Brazil, and Mexico. According to Crocs FAQ’s, they are made:
Crocs shoes are manufactured in many countries around the world including Italy, Mexico, China, Brazil, Vietnam, Bosnia, and Romania.
That’s actually a far better resume than I expected. I prefer to think that a little kid in a third-world country is not working in a factory for 12-hours a day to put my shoes together. It makes me feel bad. I really don’t mind paying a little extra to make sure that doesn’t happen. That’s one of the biggest reasons that I’ve pretty well switched completely over to the types of shoes that I wear now.
Could Crocs be the way of the future in the shoe industry? I don’t know. It kind of looks like they have a pretty good foothold (why yes, that one too). Whatever the future holds for Crocs in the shoe industry, I hope that as they continue to grow and prosper, they will act responsibly towards their consumers, employees, and community. Well, that’s my hope for any business in any industry one it comes down to it. At any rate, I don’t see myself buying any of these hideous monstrosities in their current format.