Creatures of Feet | Teen Ink

Creatures of Feet

May 7, 2008
By Anonymous

I was, either by fortune or misfortune (I haven’t decided yet), born with the feet of my father. This means that while other girls of my age enjoy petite little butterflies of feet, I was born with skis attached to my ankles.
I think that the average shoe size for my height (I am not short, I am built low to the ground for increased precision of movement and agility) is probably a six. I instead boast a size 8 ½. The Slattery feet, which are also so mercifully bestowed upon my brother, are flat, skinny and LONG. They are skinnier than they should be, like a ruler that is only 1/8'” wide. And don’t even get me started on the toes. While some people (cough cough, my mother, who has normal [ish] feet) say that they are graceful, I see this as a boldfaced lie. My toes to me resemble worms, only perhaps not so slimy. Erlack. They are roughly the length of the cap of a ballpoint pen, set on the end of the writing utensil as the writer thinks of new words to spell.
My friends who have perfectly straightened hair and perfectly put together matching outfits purchased at Abercrombie at $30 for a camisole, they have perfect feet. Their feet’s appearance is perfect like a cloudless sky, like a beach with no seashells, a perfectly mowed lawn. They flaunt these flawlessly small features with normal toes in flip-flops, while I desperately hide the mystical creatures of the sea that are my feet in converse, in close toed sneakers even though it suffocates the poor little, or rather big, beasts. Perfect feet for the perfect, weird feet for the weird.
My mother’s feet are big like mine, but she has normal bordering on long toes. The width of her feet is as the width should be- like the holes in a piece of lined paper should be ¼” thick, and that’s that. Well, maybe her feet are a little bit wider. My mother’s feet can be exposed- and quite frequently are exposed- by bare feet with no uproar. Although I too would love to let mine breathe free and wild like little silver fish in an unpolluted sea, I timidly cover them up like lobsters in a pot.
Maybe I should stop complaining and just work with it. After all, I am in fact able to walk on my feet, which is more than some can say. And, my looonggg toes are great for hanging onto a chalky balance beam for dear life. Nobody made me break the bones of my feet so that they would appear “beautiful.” Me and my brother and my dad, our feet have character. My mom’s do too, but a different kind. Our feet are like an ice cream sandwich that has melted to the point of being soft and a little bit messy, but still edible. They are like a garden that spills with all different kinds of flowers and even a few weeds, full of contrasting smells and colors that blend together to make a Cake of Slattery, with a few toes that are as long as chap stick and, when measured, the length of the pinkie of one of those perfect girls.

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