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Manolo the Columnist: Adeena from B. Brian Atwood

Manolo says, here is the Manolo’s latest column for the Express of the Washington Post.

Dear Manolo,

After four long years, and countless thousands of dollars, I’ve almost managed to graduate from college. Now, with two weeks left until the big day, I don’t know what shoes I should wear. A lot of girls go for high heels, but I’m afraid of falling on my face. What do you recommend?

Jacqueline

Manolo says, ayyyyy! Many felicitous congratulations to all of the Manolo’s friends who are graduating this year from the various institutions (educational, religious, penal) in which they have been immured these many years.

To finally leave the school after so long is the alternately liberating and terrifying experience. Your days have been held captive to the calendar of education, your nights to the rituals of studying in the library and chugging from the kegs.

Now you must make your own way in the world, with nothing more than your double major in interpretive dance and French literature and the hearty good wishes of the people at the student loan guarantee agency to speed you on your way. But you are determined to succeed, and are certain that your internship at the Committee to Save the Himalayan Hummingbird has given you good experience in such in-demand fields as photocopying, envelope-stuffing, and frappuccino-fetching. Ayyyy! The world, it is indeed your oyster!

Look! Here is the Adeena from the B. Brian Atwood, the flat ankle-strap D’Orsay flat in the silver color with the perforated floral pattern which will help you stand out from the crowd.

Adeena from Brian Atwood

Naiya from Brian Atwood for the Wednesday

Manolo says, it is Wednesday morning and you were up and out the door early. Ayyy! Too early this morning, you put on your jogging clothing (retrieved from the back of the closet where they had been collecting mildew) strapped your running shoes (from Millets) onto your feets, and went out for the early morning jog.

It was just you and the other crazy peoples who like to stumble around the neighborhood at six in the morning, breathing heavily, sweating profusely, and softly cursing humanity under your breaths. (It was only your moderate speed, those mildewed jogging clothes, and the lack of the shopping cart that distinguished you from the homeless lady who lives under the bridge.)

Normally, you would not subject yourself to such indignities. Normally, your twice weekly visit to the YMCA, where you are tortured by the chipper, ultra-toned, blonde sociopath who runs your TaiBoBodyZumbaSculpt class, would be enough to keep things where they belong. Or so you think.

But, then yesterday morning, your husband reminded you that there were only six weeks left until your high school reunion, which sounds innocuous enough, except when he said this you were trying to button up your grey slacks, which seem, you were telling yourself at the time, to have shrunk at the dry cleaners.

It was not exactly the “does my buttocks look big in this” moment, but close, and worse, because you could not honestly direct your anger at your husband, you were forced to take responsibility for your own buttocks.

Hence, the 6AM jogging mania.

And now you are sore, but filled with that enormous sense of righteous self-satisfaction that accrues to those who have jogged first thing in the morning.

Look! Shoes!
Naiya from Brian Atwood

The Naiya from Brian Atwood, black silk crepe de chine with gold heels and accents, equals “the classy.”

Brian Atwood Multicolored Buckle Sandals for the Monday

Manolo says, it is Monday, and you are no where near your desk, as the Great Unexpected Storm of 2012 has cut all the power to the office park where InEmTechCoCom, Inc. is located. So, like the school child with the snow cancellation, you have one day of glorious freedom, which you are hoping will turn into two days, which means three, because the July Fourth is Wednesday.

And so this morning, when you spontaneously awoke at 6AM, you thought you could roll over and go back to sleep, except you couldn’t because, as is often the case on the days off, your body forces you to conform to the normal schedule.

So, you got up, made the coffee, put one semi-stale mini-danish, leftover from Sunday, onto the plate, and sat down at the kitchen table with your laptop, because nothing says, “day off”, like sitting at the computer screen, checking your business email.

Yes, yes, you have big outdoor plans for the rest of the day, most of them involving cleaning up storm damage. You just needed the little bit of morning shoe time (and we are not talking about the sensible sneakers by Lacoste, either)…

Brian Atwood Multicolor Satin Buckle SandalBrian Atwood Multicolor Satin Buckle Sandal

Here is the multicolored satin buckle sandal from the Brian Atwood, the perfect thing to help you forget the I’ve-Got-a-Fallen-Elm-Tree-in-My-Backyard Blues.

Ferruccia Suede Boots from the Brian Atwood for the Tuesday

Manolo says, it is Tuesday, only the second week of November, and already you feel as if you have been sucked into the annual holiday season whirlpool; swirling, swirling, swirling around the giant vortex of seasonal merriment and angst. Any second, you will be dragged down below the surface of normality by the combined forces of heirloom turkeys, two kinds of stuffing, homemade pies, Black Friday shopping, nativity pageants at the church, and the Santy Claus.

You will struggle valiantly against it, but it is inevitable. Your holiday fate is sealed.

One minute all will be normal, and the next, as sanity leaves your body, you will be frantically searching for the silver nonpareils to adorn the twenty dozen Xmas-tree-shaped cookies you have vowed to bake for the firemen who extinguished Gary’s Camero last year.

No, you do not need to bake these cookies. Undoubtedly, the fireman at the station are still enjoying some of the 20 dozen cookies you delivered last year.

“But, it’s now a tradition,” you say to no one in particular, “every year since 2010 we’ve baked cookies for the firemen.”

And, this is the strongest evidence that you are in the center of the holiday vortex, when time and space warp. Things that appear insane to those standing outside the vortex, seem perfectly normal to those aswirl in the center.

“I think I’ll volunteer to make all the costumes for the Nativity pageant,” you announce to the candy novelties in the baking aisle as the supermarket, “I know where to find real goose feathers for the angel wings.”

No. You do not know where to find real goose feathers for the angel wings. And it is utter madness to think that you do.

“Wouldn’t it be great if the whole family dressed in the same pajamas on Christmas morning,” you say to the steering wheel, “I bet I can find something on sale at the Big Lots.”

Ayyyyy!

Look, in your final moments of sanity… gorgeous boots!

Ferruccia Suede Knee High Boots from Brian Atwood

The Ferruccia Suede Knee High Boots from the B. Brian Atwood. Gorgeous and not at all insane.

Manolo the Columnist: Paramour from B Brian Atwood

Manolo says, here is the Manolo’s latest column for the Express of the Washington Post.

Dear Manolo,

Thanks to the double dip recession, the earthquake, the hurricane, and my usually slack ways, I’m a little late getting my fall wardrobe ready this year. What’s the hot color for this season? I need something that will make me feel better about life in general. Please help.

Bridget

Manolo says, frankly, the Manolo is ready for the 2011 to be over today, so dismal has it been thus far.

But then the 2012 is not looking so good at the moment, either, what with the Presidential Election and the Mayan Calendar Stones Apocalypse both predicted to rend the fabric of civilization in the coming year.

Well, as they say, when the going gets tough, the tough get going, while the rest of us, like the Manolo, who are not so tough, get going home, where they lie down on the couch with the cold compress over their eyes
and take the little nap.

Later, after the light dinner, and perhaps the pair of revivifying kir royales, the not so tough might then thumb through the latest catalog from the Fifth Avenue of Saks, where they will discover that the hottest color of the season is “bordeaux”, which is strangely similar to “burgundy”, only different, somehow.

Look, here is the Paramour from B Brian Atwood, the autumnal, bordeaux ankle boot in suede and snake-print that will make even the Gloomiest of Gussies feel better.

Paramour Suede and Snake Ankle Boots from B Brian_Atwood

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Brian Atwood Maniac Patent Peather Pump

Manolo says, may the road rise up to meet you, may the wind be ever at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face and the rain fall softly on your fields.

And may your St. Patrick’s Day be as fun and as happy-making as the these patent leather pumps from the Brian Atwood!

Brian Atwood Harris Platform Pumps for the Monday

Manolo says, it is Monday and you are back at your desk assiduously working your way through the giant stack of papers, when you notice that today is the last day of the February, 2011.

2011…

2011…

Ayyyyy! You are living in the future!

Remember way, way back before it was the year 2000, in the 1980s even, perhaps?

Back when you were still living in the 20th Century, when you kept thinking to yourself, “yes, things here are not that wonderful, what with the parachute pants and the big hair and the Vanilla Ice, but just wait until the 21st Century. We’ll have the flying cars and the magic diet pills that will keep us thin even as we enjoy our Tang and NASA food tubes.”

And now, here you are, it is the future and you still taking the bus to work.

Worse, the magic pills that would keep the bags of the saddles from settling upon your hips, have side effects such as hair loss and sleepless weeks. And as for the NASA space food, the less said about reconstituted meat made with the futuristic growth hormones, the better.

Star Trek Communicator versus iPhone

Take That, Gene Rodenberry!


Still, the future is not the complete bust.

Have you looked at your cell phone lately? It makes the Star Trek communicator look like the Buck Rogers, retro-future movie prop (which it sort of is). And, as for the functionality, the Captain Kirk was never able to view the humble shoe blog of the Manolo, or shop for the clothing on the galactic intertubes while attempting to bed the green-skinned space hotty.

So, there’s phoning technology, even if the bill that arrives every month must be paid in currency that is still earned by the sweat of your non-robotic brow.

What other benefits have the future brought you?

Well, the Manolo can tell you that the shoes have gotten much, much better. Indeed, one can say without the hesitation that we are living in the sort of Golden Age of Shoes. More designers, more variety, more and better shoes; truly, it is the most super fantastic time to be the lover of the shoes.

Look! Here is the Harris Platform Pump from Brian Atwood

Brian Atwood Harris Platform Pump

This is exactly the sort of shoe you imagined in the future: the super sexy Jane Jetson pump that would have all of the cosmonauts down at the Saturn Club doing that comic thing with the eyes bulging and the tongues hanging out.

Brian Atwood Leopard Ankle Boots For the Thursday

Brian Atwood Leopard-Print Ankle Boots

Manolo says, frankly, the Manolo is suffering from the summer doldrums, and has need to spice it up the bit with something fun, something like these calf-hair, leopard print, ankle boots from the Brian Atwood.

Is it perhaps too literal that the Manolo thinks of pairing these with something light khaki and safari-inspired? Hatari!

Brian Atwood Lana Patent Peep-Toe Pump For the Monday

Manolo says, it is Monday and you are back at your desk, although frankly, as is usually the case, you would prefer to be somewhere else, maybe on the beach with the piña colada, or the dark side of the moon with only your clone for company, anywhere away from the incessant petty demands of the commercial workplace.

Everyone knows that summers are the worst time to have to go to the work. From childhood, you have been conditioned to take the three months from June to August off, spending those days in simple, wholesome pleasures: riding your bike to the swimming hole, catching fireflies in the gloaming, eating the watermelon slices and spitting the seeds at your little sister.

But then, when you became the adult, everyone expects you to change the natural order of things. Thereafter you must spend your summer days locked up in the cubicle, drenched in flickering, artificial light, constantly at the mercy of the bad-tempered bullies who sign your paychecks.

And now, in place of the lazy warm days spent lying on the lawn and staring at the clouds, you exchange your freedom for money, and attempt to cram your summer into the two weeks of vacation the bullies have allotted to you.

It is days like this that your most agrarian fantasies take flight. It is on these summer days, as you drive down the freeway, your business clothes cutting off the circulation to your buttocks, that you vow to quit the job, sell the house and the car, and buy the farm in the foothills of the Catskills…no, the Appalachians…wait, on the edge of the Blue Ridge Mountains, in Virginia! Yes, in Virginia.

And there, on your 19th century homestead, (which still has the bullets holes from the minor Civil War skirmish), you will raise goats (chèvre!) and chickens (free range eggs!) and plant the enormous truck garden. And on Saturdays, you will load up your antique Ford pick-up truck and drive to the farmer’s market. There, your heirloom beefsteak tomatoes will command the premium price, because famous television chefs had praised your vegetables in glossy magazines with obscenely luscious photographs.

But then you break your nail while applying the thick coating of suntan lotion to your arms, so as to protect your delicate cuticle as you dash from the office to your car in the midday sun, making you think that maybe, perhaps, you are not so well suited for the farm life.

You know what it is you now require? Shoes! Beautiful, sweet shoes.

These beautiful shoes, the Lana Patent Leather Peep-Toe Pumps by Brian Atwood may well be the cure for what ails you.

Brian Atwood Peep-Toe Pumps For the Monday

Manolo says, it is Monday and you are back at your desk, diong that thing that you do, although you are very distracted, having entered the home-stretch of the annual Festival of Blatant Consumerism.

Not that the Manolo is complaining about the giving or the getting of gifts, mind you.

Indeed, what could be better than getting the small, appropriately extravagant gift from someone with whom you share the relationship of mutual affection?

Is this the trick question?

Look! Here is the most beautiful, festive and golden, peep-toe pumps from the Brian Atwood.

Brian Atwood Suede Platform Pumps

Brian Atwood Suede Platform Pump    Manolo Likes!  Click!

Manolo says, remarkably, this magnificent suede shoe by Brian Atwood has the 5 inch heel.

Anyone can put on the teeteringly high heels on the shoes, but only the true artist can make the shoes with the five inch heels that seem proportional, make them seem beautiful, and, dare the Manolo say it, make them seem practical.

The Leopard

Leopard Print Sandals from Brian Atwood    Manolo Likes!  Click!Leopard Print d'Orsay from Brian Atwood   Manolo Likes!  Click!

Manolo says, the Manolo he cannot keep his eyes off of these beautiful and exotic Leopard print shoes from the Brian Atwood. They are magnificent!

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