Everyone knows that what you put into your body can make you sick, but did you ever stop to think that what you put on it can be equally hazardous to your health?
Long scarves, for instance. Wrap them around your neck multiple times and the ends will still trail on the ground where they will pick up germs, trip you — or even fly out a car window, get caught in a wheel, and break your neck. Not so far-fetched. That's actually how the dancer, Isadora Duncan, met her demise in 1927.
Today's ridiculous mile-high stilettos are also treacherous, of course. We all think it was cruel for the ancient Chinese to bind the feet of girl babies to keep them tiny. Aren’t these new instruments of torture equally horrific? I have yet to see anyone — from ordinary mortals to super stars — maneuver on them without lurching, staggering, tottering … A flying Wallenda can negotiate a slack wire over Niagara Falls in a wind storm more gracefully than these misguided women (and some men) can navigate a red carpet. Before long, it will be goodbye Manolo Blahnik, hello Nike; because if the wearers survive the inevitable falls, their feet will be so permanently misshapen that the only footwear they'll be able to wear will be tennis shoes, even after months of rehab and failed attempts at corrective surgery. (Those people you see grinning happily are all the newly-rich podiatrists, chiropodists, orthopedic surgeons, and manufacturers of crutches and wheelchairs.) Oh, and by the way, by the afore-mentioned "rehab" I mean for physical therapy, not drug addiction — though the pain killers you’ll need to keep you in those stilettos could easily lead to the latter.
Another hindrance to walking are those skinny jeans worn these days by too many people, including those who are nowhere skinny (or young) enough to pull off the look. So, sure, those jeans can look ridiculous; but how can they be unhealthy? Because it’s impossible to bend your legs while wearing them. Good luck going up or down stairs without stumbling. And hold on to that cell phone. Because if you drop it and you instinctively try to pick it up, your knees won’t give, but your back will. Hello rehab, my old friend!
And what about those peep-toe shoes women wear without stockings year round? Couple them with the crotch-high skirts and plunging necklines so popular today, and you have more bare skin exposed to the elements since Hugh Hefner introduced the Playgirl of the Month. Unless, like her, you have Kleig lights to keep you warm, you’d better move to Bora Bora where cold and snow are found only in story books.
Oh, while you’re in Bora Bora, maybe you should rethink that topless thong bikini. Do you really want to get a third degree sunburn in those sensitive areas? It gives a whole new meaning to "rosy cheeks." And isn’t medium rare better suited to beef than boobs?
Speaking of thongs, when did they replace panties? And why? Maybe they’re hot, but they certainly can’t help keep the wearer warm.
But perhaps the fashion fad that is responsible for the most havoc to our health today are Spanx. I remember what a relief it was to ditch my girdle years ago. Who knew that it would be replaced with even more restrictive undergarments? And why did so many people accept them so willingly? We must be masochists. The name alone should have warned us that pain would be involved. Further, how can we be so naïve as to think Spanx will make us look slimmer? You don’t have to be a physicist to know that if you compress a mass in one area, it has to go somewhere else. Spanx don’t eliminate our fat deposits, they simply relocate them temporarily. Slimmer thighs, for example, are achieved only at the cost of chubby knees ... what used to be excess abdominal fat, will be transferred to a spare tire around the midriff … News flash: Our insides are not happy to be squished, squashed, and squeezed. They retaliate by causing indigestion, acid reflux, flatulence, hernias, hiccups, botched bladders, burping, irritable bowel (trust me, you don’t want to irritate a bowel), and other conditions you may never heard of before and which may even stump Google.
At some point we have to decide whether we want to be fashionable or healthy. It should be an easy choice. Of course my health is more important. On the other hand, those stilettos do make my legs look fantastic. And if I end up in a wheel chair unable to walk, I can wear those gorgeous shoes all the time!
Rose's books (If These Are Laugh Lines I'm Having Way Too Much Fun, The Beautiful People and Other Aggravations and Grandmother Goose - Rhymes for a Second Childhood) are available on Amazon.com.
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