Manolo says, here is the newest column of the Manolo for the Express of the Washington Post.
Now that summer has arrived, I’ve been powerfully tempted to don a pair of airy mandals to wear with my summer weight suits. My wife advises me that this would be a very bad thing. What do you suggest?
Manolo says, yes it is true, not since the waning days of the Roman Empire have the toes of serious men been so conspicuously in evidence. Indeed, earlier this year, his Honorable Excellency, The President Barack H. Obama was photographed eating the parti-colored, Hawaiian snow cone while wearing the polo shirt, board shorts and the flip-flops, his presidential toes exposed for the entire world to see.
One cannot imagine the Dwight Eisenhower, or the Teddy Roosevelt, or even the Grover Cleveland appearing in the public place in mandals, much less the Wal-Mart flip-flops, but clearly, such bygone standards of dress a
nd comportment no longer apply in our informal age, to the point that the most powerful man in the world feels free to let his hairy toes breath glorious fresh air.
The Manolo says, do not be that man. Do not give in to the temptation to dress like the ten-year-old boy on the way to the comic book store. Do not be “That Man With the Toes”. Take pride in your appearance and cover your toes for the sake of humanity and the protection of your womenfolk.
Here is the Henley II from the Ralph Lauren Collection, the traditional two-tone oxford, the sort of shoe that has long been recognized as the gentlemanly response to the heat of summer.