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The High Heeled Ruminations Of Melrose Plant

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Posted (edited)

6'3 and a half inch, no heels. I am happy with my look in heels in the miror, which is also 6 ft apart from me. So my reflect lies 12 ft afar.

In a crowded area, my colleagues can chat with one another, and at the summit I get the minutes by radio.

Edited by Gudulitooo
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50 minutes ago, Gudulitooo said:

6'3 and a half inch, no heels. I am happy with my look in heels in the miror, which is also 6 ft apart from me. So my reflect lies 12 ft afar.

In a crowded area, my colleagues can chat with one another, and at the summit I get the minutes by radio.

Oh wow yes you are tall.  Though I hear most women find tall men attractive, so it does have advantages...

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On 3/4/2019 at 8:52 AM, Shyheels said:

I think if it was just a matter of your being spotted wearing heels in a restaurant or in a petrol station forecourt or shopping in Sainsbury's in your own time or on the weekends, and your employer wanted to make a big deal about it, especially if they wanted to sack you, you could have decent grounds for a court case and damages.  

I agree with you, and nothing I said above was intended to suggest that any UK employer would be entitled to take serious action against a heel-wearing male employer (even in the workplace, unless a reasonable and enforceable dress code was being violated).   But, depending upon the nature of the business and its degree of formality, I would expect 'the boss' to at least pass a few comments to the transgressor if it was felt that the business reputation was threatened, however mildly.   

When I worked in a professional environment, in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere (despite my presence!!), the MD (by no means a stuffed shirt) did have occasion to ask a male employee to cover up his fairly modest arm tattoos and trim his hair - a perfectly reasonable request in my book as his appearance was not really 'professional', and he did comply. 

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Of course - but that was at the office. The employee in question would not have been expected to wear long sleeves on the weekends, or whilst on holiday or at the beach 

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Change of subject, fellows! I will be fine. There is no problem with my employer or union hall, and any chance or purposeful future meetings with my present coworkers will be fine, I'm sure. It was more of a.  .  . how do you say? RUMINATION. 'Cause I do that sometimes.

Anyway, my next rumination is one that I look very much forward to hearing your thoughts about, since we have members from both sides of the pond who generally tend to be interested in this sort of thing. And my question is this: Why do we often refer, and I say "we" because I know it's not just me, to shoes and their associated parts in the singular? By this, I mean we will often refer to shoes that have a block heel, or a 4 inch heel. Or people will say something like, "You ought to pair that outfit with a smart nude pump." I find myself doing this all the time, and I've heard it so many times that it doesn't sound bad, even though it is technically grammatically incorrect. Fashion people will even sometimes go so far as to refer to "a flat-front pant." Which, come to think of it, makes a good deal more sense than referring to shoes in the singular. What are your thoughts on this? Am I allowed to refer to my new sandals which have a 4 1/2" heel without getting a bunch of static from people, particularly from my UK brethren?

P.S. I am looking forward to a lot of tongue-in-cheek answers. Just so you know.

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It’s correct both ways depending on your usage. 

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Posted (edited)

When I use the singular, in my mind I am referring to a singular design, so the word “design” is omitted but implied.  The full sentence in my mind is “My OTK boots have a 4” heel design.”  This is similar to saying “Her boots have a bright red color.”

This is just what goes on in my mind.  Not sure how this aligns with grammatical rules.  

I suppose if one decides to wear mismatched shoes it gets complicated.  If one says “My OTK boots have a 4” heel and a 3” heel” does each boot has two heels?  :p

Edited by p1ng74

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2 hours ago, p1ng74 said:

I suppose if one decides to wear mismatched shoes it gets complicated.  If one says “My OTK boots have a 4” heel and a 3” heel” does each boot has two heels?  :p

When you Perfectly MisMatch you say you have a brown shoe and a black shoe, or a chestnut and tan, ...

Then you use "a" you are referring to a particular element of the objects. Those cars come with a warranty.

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Although either singular or plural reference (e.g. 'a 4" heel' or '4" heels') will generally be both acceptable and understandable, if in doubt the singular is generally better, and may avoid ambiguity.   (Consider a sentence such as 'Londoners have large houses'.   How many houses per person is unclear.   'Each Londoner has a large house' avoids that ambiguity.) 

If, for example, I say that 'my shoes have red laces', it could mean that each shoe has more than one lace - possible, if unlikely, and of course a shoe can really only have one heel!   By saying 'my shoes have a red lace', the possible confusion is removed - it is very unlikely that anyone would think that either a pair of shoes shared a single lace, or that one of the pair had no lace! 

Some words that are treated as plurals are really describing a single item or object - 'pants/trousers/tights' being a good example.   (But what does a one-legged person ask for?  :confused: )   So, we have to say 'His only pants are being washed', but we can equally say' His only pair of paints is being washed'.   Likewise 'premises' (meaning land or buildings) is treated as a plural even if relating to one plot or structure; the word 'premise' has another meaning entirely.   And we have some words that are strictly plurals but treated as singular (e.g. data, agenda).

The English language is fascinating, but full of pitfalls. :study:  I blame the bloody foreigners from whom we inherited (or borrowed) so many of our words - and we certainly ain't giving 'em back after Brexit, although I would be happy if the Americans would take most of theirs away!  :toilet_claw:

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At first,thank you for that English lesson that I have found interesting. As a French native you can imagine that I am often struggling with your language 

Then,be sure that the French offers exactly the same possibilities,difficulties,and not so many French natives fell at ease with.

So ,please don't blame these bloody foreigners who are not responsible of these difficulties .You took from the foreign languages what it has  seemed  confortable to take  ..And we did and are still doing the same.

Sorry for my very average English .I am working hard to improve it. Honestly said I am more at ease with 5"heels .But that's a different story  

Pierre 

 

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Your English is excellent. I wish my French was half as good

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On 3/4/2019 at 6:09 AM, mlroseplant said:

I think that perhaps my concerns were misunderstood somewhat. It isn't my employer that I'm worried about in the least. Heck the ultimate customer is one of those left-coast social media concerns, and they'd probably let me wear heels to work if I worked directly for them! Well, maybe not, but it wouldn't be beyond the realm of possibility, depending on the job. The thoughts I actually had several posts ago were about my individual coworkers, and how they might react. I don't have all my longtime friends working with me on this one, unlike the last job.

I think I remember you writing about losing your job a year or so ago....Generally speaking, it is probably best to keep your home/social/heeling life separate from your work environment.  Much has been said about laws and our rights, but I fear the reality of the situation is that an employer will find a way to let you go if he wants you gone.... You mention that your new employer would "probably" be fine with your heels, you are worried about coworker's reactions.  How well do you know your coworkers?  Do you socialize with any of them?  Keep in mind that although your employer would not be bothered by your heels, he might be miffed if you wore heels to work and that created some sort of disruption/problems with coworkers.  It sounds like you work in construction, probably alot of macho stuff there also.  So, I'm thinking it is probably not a good idea to wear your heels to work.  On the other hand, I would not worry too much about one of your coworkers seeing you in heels out of work.  Sure, they will talk, but it is none of their business, and has nothing to do with work or your work performance. 

I hope this job works out nicely for you buddy...Don 

4 hours ago, Pierre1961 said:

At first,thank you for that English lesson that I have found interesting. As a French native you can imagine that I am often struggling with your language 

Then,be sure that the French offers exactly the same possibilities,difficulties,and not so many French natives fell at ease with.

So ,please don't blame these bloody foreigners who are not responsible of these difficulties .You took from the foreign languages what it has  seemed  confortable to take  ..And we did and are still doing the same.

Sorry for my very average English .I am working hard to improve it. Honestly said I am more at ease with 5"heels .But that's a different story  

Pierre 

 

Pierre, you English is fine, we should be more concerned about working on our French!

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8 hours ago, Pierre1961 said:

At first,thank you for that English lesson that I have found interesting. As a French native you can imagine that I am often struggling with your language 

Then,be sure that the French offers exactly the same possibilities,difficulties,and not so many French natives fell at ease with.

So ,please don't blame these bloody foreigners who are not responsible of these difficulties .You took from the foreign languages what it has  seemed  confortable to take  ..And we did and are still doing the same.

Sorry for my very average English .I am working hard to improve it. Honestly said I am more at ease with 5"heels .But that's a different story  

Pierre 

 

Your English is certainly better than my French, mon ami!   

Don't take my tongue-in-cheek dig at foreigners (and their languages) too seriously; the English language has been greatly enriched by what it has acquired from elsewhere!   And the same is true of French and most other languages.   But clearly the structure of any language is likely to be different in many respects from that of others, so when words or expressions are 'borrowed', all sorts of irregularities arise.

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3 hours ago, Puffer said:

Your English is certainly better than my French, mon ami!   

Don't take my tongue-in-cheek dig at foreigners (and their languages) too seriously; the English language has been greatly enriched by what it has acquired from elsewhere!   And the same is true of French and most other languages.   But clearly the structure of any language is likely to be different in many respects from that of others, so when words or expressions are 'borrowed', all sorts of irregularities arise.

English is my second language, and I have spent much of my life teaching children.  For me, the vast idiomatic elements of English are what make it a pleasure and worthwhile to learn and use.  I like that when we learn and converse in English, we are operating at a intersection of multiple cultural idioms.  

That said, this intersection can only be preserved and expanded if we learn other languages.  There are still concepts and phrases in my mind that seem only expressible in Chinese or German.  There just doesn’t seem to be a straightforward English word for it!  

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9 hours ago, p1ng74 said:

English is my second language, and I have spent much of my life teaching children.  For me, the vast idiomatic elements of English are what make it a pleasure and worthwhile to learn and use.  I like that when we learn and converse in English, we are operating at a intersection of multiple cultural idioms.  

That said, this intersection can only be preserved and expanded if we learn other languages.  There are still concepts and phrases in my mind that seem only expressible in Chinese or German.  There just doesn’t seem to be a straightforward English word for it!  

There are probably several English words (or phrases) for almost any concept, but not necessarily straightforward ones!   English is not the simplest language, nor is it the most cumbersome; I think we have the balance about right between flexibility/range of expression and ease of use.   As a wise Roman once said: In medio tutissimus ibis.

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...and then his mother told him to shut up and eat his breakfast.

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6 hours ago, Shyheels said:

...and then his mother told him to shut up and eat his breakfast.

Maybe - but only if it was better to consume a middle course!   :cup:

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12 hours ago, Puffer said:

There are probably several English words (or phrases) for almost any concept, but not necessarily straightforward ones!   English is not the simplest language, nor is it the most cumbersome; I think we have the balance about right between flexibility/range of expression and ease of use.   As a wise Roman once said: In medio tutissimus ibis.

 

9 hours ago, Shyheels said:

...and then his mother told him to shut up and eat his breakfast.

THIS is exactly the sort of exchange I was hoping for! And as a side bonus, there have been several logical and plausible explanations to my "serious" query. Thanks, fellas, for all your replies to my sometimes absurd thread.

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Winter is almost over, and despite this having been one of the snowiest winters on record here in Iowa, I have managed to avoid wearing boots all winter in my free time. I, of course, am required to wear boots for my construction electrician job, but it hardly counts as I have been fortunate to work inside this winter. With the exception of having worn flat heeled snow boots for actual and active snow removal, I have not worn boots out and about all winter. Unless the specific outfit dictates otherwise, I have gone through the entire snowy winter wearing clogs or mules. I've only gotten snow down my shoes a few times, but that doesn't bother me too much. I have worn full coverage shoes where style dictates, I just don't feel that wearing mules with a suit and tie is an acceptable look. I have my heeled oxfords and loafers for that purpose.

Why I should be so proud of my accomplishment, I have no idea. I own probably a dozen pair of high heeled boots, including two knee high pair, which I have in the past worn regularly on the outside of my pants. But deep down in my heart, I'm a sandal/barefoot kind of guy, and I am slow to warm to the idea that I'm going to have to cover up my entire foot for a half a year. Pun intended. My poor boots were kind of lonesome this year. I cannot say whether this will be a future trend, or whether it's just a mental accomplishment where I can now say, "I did it," and then next year I will go back to wearing boots in the winter.

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1 hour ago, Shyheels said:

And here I’d happily wear boots in summer, and do

When did they start to have real hot summers in England?

Iowa's summers are hot.

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I'm more aligned with mlroseplant; I like lightweight sandals (when weather allows) but tend to wear boots in winter.   What they have in common is that both offer much variety, in styles that veer from rugged masculine to delicate feminine (with or without heels), and almost all tastes and competencies are catered for.   With shoes, however, the variety always seem to me more limited, with not a great deal of middle ground for experimentation between the man's flat Oxford or brogue and the woman's classic stiletto court - apart that is from the 'loafer' with its casual slip-on styling, 'borrowed' from men and given a stacked heel for women that really needs to be back in a man's closet too.

16 minutes ago, Cali said:

When did they start to have real hot summers in England?

Iowa's summers are hot.

Our English summers can be hot (as was most of 2018's) and are 'real' enough.   As to being 'really' hot, that is a question of degree (Celsius preferably). :study:

(Does no-one over the pond use adverbs?) 

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Iowa averages about 86 F (30 C) in July, not knee boot weather in my humble opinion. Although it can get in the 90's F in England your averages are close to 79 F (26 C).  BTW Kent had the highest temp ever in UK in 2003.

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I wear knee boots all summer here in Texas.  I find that they are still cooler than wearing plastic tennis shoes.  I threw out the sandals the day I moved to Texas.  Way too many fire ants, scorpions, red wasps, cactus, and all manner of pokey things near the ground.  

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1 hour ago, Cali said:

Iowa averages about 86 F (30 C) in July, not knee boot weather in my humble opinion. Although it can get in the 90's F in England your averages are close to 79 F (26 C).  BTW Kent had the highest temp ever in UK in 2003.

Yes, over here we well know Kent had the UK’s highest temperature in 2003 when the mercury cracked the century mark in degrees Fahrenheit. With everywhere being near the sea here, we combine our heat with fairly high humidity. Our summers are nothing like Australia’s of course, but they are warm enough so that boots are not generally seen in the high street

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I've worn knee boots in Australia in summer too - most notably when I was shooting a series on sugar cane growers, and being out in the cane fields during the harvest with a lot of king brown snakes and taipans.

I've also been grateful for tall boots in Queensland jungles - they have a nightmare plant called gympie and if you so much as brush your skin against one of the leaves you can expect literally months of extreme agony.  People have been known to beg for amputations to rid themselves of the pain. Stout boots are nice up there.

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6 hours ago, Shyheels said:

Yes, over here we well know Kent had the UK’s highest temperature in 2003 when the mercury cracked the century mark in degrees Fahrenheit. With everywhere being near the sea here, we combine our heat with fairly high humidity. Our summers are nothing like Australia’s of course, but they are warm enough so that boots are not generally seen in the high street

The 2003 record of 38.5C (101.3F) was in Faversham, Kent and still stands.   Interestingly, Faversham also had the highest 2018 temperature (35.3C).   I live 40 miles away and 'enjoyed' slightly lower but consistently high temperatures for a lengthy period last summer.   (Definitely sandal weather, but that does not stop some people from wearing 'fashionable' boots - and I don't just mean the silly ones with open toes!) 

Gravesend (also in Kent, on the Thames estuary) is often the place with the highest summer temperature day-by-day, which is somewhat surprising as proximity to the sea usually results in the cooling effect of sea breezes in summer (and vice versa in winter), largely negating the coastal tendency to experience greater humidity.   The difference in comfort level between those areas of Kent and East Sussex that are well inland and their coasts (typically some 30 miles away) can be quite marked.   And, in winter, we are far from immune to the more extreme effects of the cold weather from across the Channel that is compulsorily 'enjoyed' by everyone in the EU - at least until a date yet to be determined by the politicians. 

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Also remember that unlike the US, air conditioning is relatively uncommon in the UK.

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That’s very true. We certainly don’t have it.

For that matter I never had it in my old house in Australia despite the high temperatures. It was one of the Queenslander style bungalows though, built around 1910 and designed perfectly for circulation of air. Didn’t really need air conditioning. 

 

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