It’s been cold lately where I live. So cold, in fact, that I left a can of Diet Coke on my windowsill overnight and woke up to find that it had burst open in the middle of the night, spraying a Slurpee-like ooze across my kitchen tiles. Suffice to say, the weather has put me in a funk. I have cabin fever to the Nth degree. Each and every time I try to venture outside, however, the bitch slap that is a blast of polar vortex air sends me right back indoors.
Mornings in particular are tough. Thanks to Daylight Saving Time, I wake up in the pitch black that looks exactly the same as when I fell asleep. I then turn on the news to hear about another “new record low” temperature we’ve reached. (One reporter said something to the effect of “I’ve been out here for an hour and I have never been so cold in my entire life! I haven’t felt my hands or feet in about forty-five minutes,” and I made a mental note to remind myself to never die in the line of duty for shitty local news.) Then I attempt to stuff myself and my two layers of leggings into a pair of jeans, sausage-style.
One morning was exceptionally bad. It was icy and hovering around four degrees, and I was running late. I had somehow misplaced the rain boots that I received in my “preppy starter pack” and was frantically looking for something, anything to wear during my commute. Then I found them. My Uggs. My eleven-year-old Uggs. My eleven-year-old, only worn nine times Uggs. My eleven-year-old, only worn nine times and then deemed too gauche to wear by twelve-year-old me in 2004 Uggs. I couldn’t wear them. I just couldn’t. But then, beaten into submission by how late I already was, I threw them on.
And holy shit it was amazing. My feet were so warm, so coddled, and so cared for that I seriously questioned my decision to ever wear any other type of shoe. With my Uggs on, it didn’t matter that the wind chill felt like -17. The fact that the roads hadn’t been properly plowed and that I was walking through freezing cold slush? Irrelevant! My feet felt like they were nestled inside of a sheep and I fucking loved it.
But even with my newfound happiness, there was a nagging voice in the back of my mind. “Basic,” it hissed. “Baasssiiiic.”
“Shut the fuck up, you pretentious bitch!” I yelled back.
Look, I’m not naïve. I know Uggs are a point of contention. Objectively, they look godawful. Also objectively, however, they feel fantastic. The only other shoe to bring about such a bitterly divided public opinion are Crocs (which are disgusting and I will never change my mind about that). It’s time we saw Uggs in a new light. In the approximate decade since their release, they’ve gone from fashion trend to cultural fad to object of public derision to legitimate outerwear option. Uggs have lived and they have learned. They know they aren’t cute, and now that it’s not 2003, they aren’t trying to sell themselves as such. Instead, they truly shine as a practical piece of clothing for the cold weather months. They have made this terrible, freezing winter just a little bit more bearable. Uggs have saved my ankles from frostbite, and by extension, they’ve saved my life. They were the worst until they ended up being the best.
That being said, I still change into a cute pair of shoes once I arrive at my destination. Uggs have a time and a place — and that time and place is not indoors and around people with functioning eyesight..
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