What do jerks and shoes have in common? Heels.

by mssinglemama on March 23, 2008

hels.jpgWe’ve all met them and most of us have unfortunately fallen for one of them, or in my case, several of them – men who are complete heels.

The worst of the worst, they have actually taken the time to understand women, know our vulnerabilities and then they suck us in with the illusion that they may be the perfect man.

This is all according to Daphne Merkin who wrote an article in The New York Times this weekend that sums it all up. “Like four inch stilettos,” she writes, “these men make you feel good just by being part of your person, like the most enticing accessories.”

Please, please, please read this entire article. I don’t think I’ve ever read such an accurate portrayal of some of the men I’ve encountered out there. But I’ll try my best to sum it up. Here goes…

Before defining the heel Merkin first defines “the less damning subspecies of lethally seductive men known as cads and jerks.”

The Cads – “All promise and no delivery.”

“Cads toy with you, but only on the most readily perceptible of levels. They wine and dine you, send distinguished arrangements of flowers, but by the third date their unworthiness is revealed, and they become as transparent as the sweet nothings they whisper — all promise and no delivery.”

The Jerks – “Two for oners.”

“Jerks, on the other hand, have the most immediate impact, coming at you like a rocket, throwing off sparks right and left, but wearing out their welcome even more quickly…a jerk is more like the high school boy who makes a play for your best friend after flirting with you by the lockers, impervious to the fact that both of you have grown disgusted with his two-for-the-price-of-one approach.”

The Heel – “Every woman’s nightmare.”

“The thing with heels is that they’re not simply poseurs. Unlike cads and jerks, they have actually taken the time to understand women, their ready-at-hand vulnerability bubbling just below a self-possessed surface. They are great flatterers and great soothers; you can turn to them at times of emotional distress, and they will not only act comprehending but also be ready to rush over and stroke your hair, working their way up to larger gestures of consolation”

She goes on to compare the heel she fell for to a pair of four inch stilletos. He was “a man you could try on forever and never feel steady on your feet with, never reach that crucial sense of balance.”

Again, here’s the entire article. Much better than my little excerpts.

I’m not sure how Daphne Merkin would define a good man, but mine is a man who is true to himself. One who knows who he is and exactly why he loves you inside and out. But the key to a good man is that he is able to love. That he can be a real man, look it in the face and own it. Own the love – not us.

Since my divorce I have come across cads, jerks and heels. And like Merkin writes the cads and the jerks are manageable. But those heels. Damn those heels. So uncomfortable but so damn desirable.

I’ve had one heel since my divorce. It’s been one year now since we kissed and every time a flashing thought of him tears through my mind it still hurts. But here’s the catch. As a single mom, what hurts the most are my memories of me … a fricking sobbing mess for days – in front of Benjamin. The good news is, I’ve had my heel and there won’t be another one. Read this article…seriously.

Any of this heel talk ring true for you? And I also want to know if you where heels or not? : ) I couldn’t live without mine…but they’re usually reserved for non-waking Benjamin hours.

P.S. Merkin’s latest book Dreaming of Hitler is a collection of essays dishing out some her personal sexual demons. Looks like I might have to check it out…

{ 5 trackbacks }

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

tina.marie March 23, 2008 at 2:04 am

I’m going to go read that article. 🙂


mssinglemama March 24, 2008 at 1:19 am

Awesome Tina, I’m sure you’ll enjoy it as much as I did…wish I could write that well. Damn Daphne is good.


Ame April 9, 2008 at 8:10 am

I am capable of being completely stable in 4 inch stilettos, but the male kind of heel completely throws me for a loop! I loved this article and not just because I spend way too much time thinking about shoes!


Lina Smith July 24, 2008 at 4:11 pm

I found this site called http://URAjerk.com maybe you can use it. It seems to help get me through the issues of dealing with some of the jerks I know. At least I can vent about these jerks, plus I get a kick out of sending them some cards.


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