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Manolo the Columnist: Ashton from Allen-Edmonds

Manolo says, here is the recent column of the Manolo for the Express of the Washington Post.

Dear Manolo,

My engineer husband needs a new pair of shoes. He has had the same pair of black wingtips for the last twenty years, which he wears to every function that requires shoes more formal than sneakers. Can you suggest something brown?

Rebecca

Manolo says, it is true! The engineers have the well-earned reputation for the unworldly practicality; the very people who invented and wear the convertible cargo pants with the legs that zip off.

“Bob,” says the Mrs. Engineer, “you can’t wear those to your uncle’s funeral.”

“What’s wrong with them? I’ve put the legs back on.”

The simple fact is, the world needs the engineers more than the engineers need the world. Without the engineers, and their ancient predecessors building the ziggurats and the aqueducts, the human peoples would still be living in the caves and eating the raw carrion.

Of the course, for whatever reason, the world of the 21st century has decided it is the good thing to neglect the engineer, preferring instead to heap it’s affection on the hucksters who have given us the ability to express our deepest thoughts in hashtags and emoticons. (By the way, be sure to please follow the Manolo on the Twitter @ShoeBlogger)

Let us resolve this very day to be nicer to the peoples who keep our sewage systems and power plants functioning, so that we may enjoy the manifest benefits of indoor plumbing and modern life.

Here is the Ashton from Allen-Edmonds the brown in-between shoe that would be suitable for both the place of engineering employment and the more casual affair involving the pants whose legs are firmly attached.

Ashton from Allen-Edmonds

What to Wear if You are the Man: Desert Boots

Manolo says, since the Manolo has come out strongly against the Keen sports mandals, what then should the , sporty man of the age of the middle be wearing when he is not ‘shredding it with his homies’?”

What else? The desert boot, also know as the chukka boot.

Branch Boot from Base London

This is the Branch from Base London, the smart-looking, leather dessert boot that will not only cover your man toes, but make you look like the respectable adult human, rather than the over-grown-adolescent couch surfer.

Here is one more choice…

Gobi Boot from Ikon

This is the Gobi from Ikon, in the olive suede that the Manolo finds both handsome enough to wear around town on your various manly, grown-up adventures.

Both of these, and many, many others like them are the sort of comfortable, casual shoe that the man can feel good about slipping on in the morning and wearing through out the whole day.

Manolo the Columnist: Perforated Straight Tip Oxford from Alden

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

Dear Manolo,

Last week, you answered a Valentine’s Day question from a woman who is giving the holiday another chance. I have a similar dilemma, from a slightly different perspective. I’m a 28-year-old man who’s found the love of his life, and who now wishes to propose matrimony on Valentine’s Day in a fairly traditional, get-down-on-one-knee sort of way. I’ve got a new gray suit, and I need a pair of new shoes. The question is, brown or black?

Tom

Manolo says, the Manolo applauds your willingness to stick with the most traditional and romanticest form of the proposal, rather than as has become depressingly common, taking your beloved to the Capitals hockey game, and during the second intermission having the Slapshot the Mascot skate out with the ring on his stick, while your visage appears on the Jumbotron, thirty feet tall, pledging eternal love to your deeply embarrassed girlfriend, whom you refer to repeatedly, in glorious amplification, by your own special, little love nickname, “Sugar Butt”.

Trust the Manolo, only the lunatic, or the Hollywood producer (but the Manolo repeats himself) would think that such the spectacular public proposal was the good idea. Better to take your lady friend to the romantically dim little place, where if things do not go well. and you are rejected, you may slink away largely unnoticed by the few diners who are present.

As for the shoes with the gray suit, the Manolo’s choice is brown, which if properly chosen can have the deeper, more luxurious color than the black. Here is the perforated straight tip oxford from Alden in the rich walnut brown color.

Perforated Toe Cap Oxford from Alden

Manolo’s Late Night Bargain: Lace Up Oxford from Fratelli Rossetti

Fratelli Rossetti Lace Up Oxford

Manolo says, luxurious lace up oxfords for the man, from the Italian shoemaker Fratelli Rossetti, on the sale! 50% off of the regular price, the savings of more than $400 of the American dollars!

Manolo the Columnist: Authentic Saddle Shoes from Hush Puppies

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

Dear Manolo,

This entire summer, my husband has insisted on wearing the same pair of sports mandals, despite the fact that they’ve grown shabby looking and smelly (something I did not know was possible for a sandal). With the end of summer approaching, can you recommend something casual that he might like? He’s moderately outdoorsy, and fit, and prefers khakis and plaids, in other words, he pretty typical.

Audra

Manolo says, the Manolo frequently gets the plaintive missives from the women who wish to restyle their men folk into something more put-together, something less sloppy, rustic, disastrous, and/or menacing

“Manolo,” they frequently cry out, “my husband dresses as if he were Larry the Cable Guy’s younger, messier brother. Please help.”

To which the Manolo can only reply, you cannot overnight change your man from the Tom Arnold into the Tom Selleck. You must work deliberately, and politely, using positive reinforcement and strategic praise

For the example, “Oh, honey, you look so much better since you stopped wearing buckskin and shaved off your Grizzly Adams beard. Like the handsome man I married.”

Or, “Darling, I’m so glad you finally threw out those too-small jeans with the hole in the seat. I’m just sorry it had to be the police who told you to do it. Here, I bought you this pair of styling, flat-front khakis.”

You must move your man slowly along the continuum of style, using the well-thought out gifts to nudge him gently in the direction you wish him to go. Start with the men’s casual shoes.

Here is the Hush Puppies Authentic Saddle Shoes, the American classic, one that any American man should be proud to wear.

Hush Puppies Authentic Saddle Shoe

Shoemaker Saturday: Cheaney English Shoes

Manolo says, what is not to like about this? Traditional English craftsmanship done by people who seem to revel in the work.

Jackie Chukka Boots in tan from Cheaney English Shoes

Shoemaker Saturday: Louis Vuitton

Manolo says, as always, to the lover of the shoes (and perhaps even to the non-lover) these videos are entrancing.

Louis Vuitton Infinity Lace-up Toe-Cap
Louis Vuitton Diploma Lace-up Wingtip

Manolo’s Late Night Bargain: Cole Haan Air Ryder Driver

Cole Haan Air Ryder Driver Ox in CigarCole Haan Air Ryder Driver Ox in Olive

Manolo says, Manolo, what about the gentlemen, do they not also deserve the late night bargain?

To which the Manolo replies, yes, and here it is, the Air Ryder Driver from Cole Haan, the casual driving shoe that has both the comfort and the style in mind. This is something more sophisticated than the New Balance sneakers that are your man’s habitual casual wear, and selling at nearly 65% off of the usual price, you will be the smartest of smarty-smart shoppers.

Manolo’s Late Night Bargain: Earthkeepers Chukka from Timberland

Timberland Earthkeepers Chukka Boots

Manolo says, it is no secret that the Manolo is the fan of the Earthkeepers from Timberland for the casual man wear, and so when he saw that this pair of chukka boots was selling at nearly 60% off, he could not but recommend them to his internet friends.

Shoe Personalities: Phluff Daddy from O’Neill

N.B. Psychologists have proven what we already know, shoe tell us much about the wearer

Phluff Daddy from O'Neill

The Phluff Daddy from O’Neill, $18.

Your name is Kenny. Not Kenneth, Kenny, and you own only four pairs of the long pants, two of them blue jeans.

Your best friend in the whole world is the chocolate lab named Bo, who wears the red bandanna around his neck, limps from the little bit of doggy arthritis, and is the sort of chick magnet (although he seems to mostly draw only single-mom divorcees who work in diners, and college girls studying recreation science).

You spend most of your time riding your mountain bike around town, reading undergraduate philosophy books, or hanging out at the indie coffee shop downtown, talking to college girls who are studying recreation science.

You’re 36-years-old and you’ve never left this town. Why should you? You were born here, went to school here, and graduated from college here (English, ’98). You even live in the tiny, two-bedroom house your grandmother left you up in the Avenues, stretching out that legacy into infinity (if you can keep your expenses down).

Some mornings, while you’re eating your bacon and eggs in the harvest-yellow kitchen with the avocado green stove, you look at the newspaper and think that maybe you should sell that house and get out of that town.

But then Bo hobbles in and puts his nose on your bare leg beneath your cargo shorts, and you think “Not yet, boy. Now while you’re still around.”

Happy Fathers Day!

A. Testoni Cap Toe Lace Up Oxford

Manolo says, to all of the Fathers, Dads, Pops, and Pas, the Manolo wishes you the happiest of the Father’s Days!

Psychologist Say, Shoes Really Do Make the Person

Manolo says, once again, science proves that which we already knew to be true, that shoes tell us much about the person who is wearing them.

Researchers at the University of Kansas found that people were able to correctly judge a stranger’s age, gender, income, political affiliation, emotional and other important personality traits just by looking at the person’s shoes.

Lead researcher Omri Gillath found that by examining the style, cost, color of condition of the shoe, participants were able to guess about 90 percent of the of the owner’s personal characteristics.

And, we are supposed to be surprised by this? Seven years ago, our friend, the Miss Meghan published the very amusing book, The Perfect Fit; What Your Shoes Say About You that said exactly the same thing.

But, we must let the scientistic peoples have their say.

The 63 observers were then asked to look at each pair and guess the gender, age, social status and different personality traits of the owner, like whether the owner was an extrovert or introvert, liberal or conservative and the degree of their emotional stability, agreeableness, conscientiousness and openness.

Researchers found that observers did well in guessing characteristics of the volunteers in almost all categories, and concluded that people do wear shoes that reveal their personality, whether they intend to or not.

Expensive shoes belonged to high earners, flashy and colorful footwear belonged to extroverts and shoes that were not new but appeared to be spotless belonged to conscientious types.

Science!

While some of the clues like the ones already described were obvious, other clues were more surprising.

Practical and functional shoes generally belong to agreeable people, ankle boots fit with more aggressive personalities and uncomfortable looking shoes were worn by calm personalities.

Participants were able to most accurately judge a person’s age, gender and income followed by their emotional stability and agreeableness.

In psychology, emotional stability is an umbrella term that includes a person’s fear of abandonment, rejection issues and the ability to handle different kinds of relationships.

People with “attachment anxiety” or people that were most worried about their relationships generally had brand new and well-kept shoes. Researchers suggest that this may be because they worry so much about their appearance and what others may think of them.

Not surprisingly, liberal thinkers, who many think of as flip-flop wearing hippies, wear shabbier and less expensive shoes.

And now the drum roll, please, for the grande finale conclusion….

“Shoes convey a thin but useful slice of information about their wearers,” the authors wrote. “Shoes serve a practical purpose, and also serve as nonverbal cues with symbolic messages. People tend to pay attention to the shoes they and others wear.”

Ta-Da!! “People pay attention to the shoes they and others wear!”

Scientia omnia vincit!

And, now, the Manolo challenges you, using your newly discovered scientific super powers, tell the Manolo what sort of person would wear each of these three shoes…

Number 1:
Giuseppe Zanotti E20274 Platform Sandal

The E20274 Platform Sandal from Giuseppe Zanotti, retail price $1,150!

Number 2:
Super Birki White Flower Clog

The Birki’s Super Birki White Flower Clogs, with the retail price of $79.95

Number 3:
Jeffrey-West Ronnie Boot

The Ronnie Men’s Boot from Jeffery-West, selling for the $545.

Tomorrow, the Manolo will tell you correct answers to the question, what do these shoes say about their wearers.

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