WOMAN ON THE VERGE: Time to bring back the socks and sandals

June 7th, 2022 3:30 PM

By Emma Connolly

Bring back the sandal and sock combo for Summer 2022 I say, and leave the exposed ankles to Paul Mescal and the other millennials. As for Speedos? I’ve literally got no words for those.

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The sock-less fashion trend that’s getting a leg in the door with men of all ages is one to side step as far as I’m concerned, unless you’re as cool as the likes of Paul Mescal ....

• THERE I was thinking middle-aged women had it tough (where to even start, actually I’m too tired to even bother), but I wouldn’t be a middle-aged man for any colour of money what with the fashion trends they have to navigate this season. It was actually Des Bishop the comedian who sparked me off on this week’s train of thought. The US comedian who used to live in Cork whose big gag was the fear of leaving the immersion on? Anyway, he got married recently and I was struck by his decision to go sockless on his big day. It’s a trend that’s been creeping (or should that be squelching?) in slowly but surely for a while but it’s one that’s giving me the complete ‘ick.’ It’s not just Des who is embracing it either, but actual bone-fide middle-aged men of West Cork and I feel their pain. Literally. There’s no two ways about it, it must be very uncomfortable, sliding about all sweaty and slippery, and the potential for cuts and blisters must be massive. All very unpleasant and only something very few can pull off. People like Paul Mescal perhaps (maybe Paul Galvin could manage it, and possibly Diarmuid Gavin). Of course some men do choose to wear those teeny-weeny little tennis socks but I feel that’s nearly worse than no socks at all. I don’t know. It’s all fraught with danger so my advice is to leave it to the Italian lads in their moccasins and stick with the socks and sandals. They’ve somehow never looked so good.

• Same for the tapered, ankle-exposing cropped pants. That’s another look that I feel middle-aged men should give a very wide swerve to. It’s very unforgiving and there’s not many native ankles that deserve to be showcased by such a statement cut. Having said that I’ve absolutely no problem with the year-round short wearing that’s very much a ‘look’ in these parts but the tight pants? Lads, all you need for summer is a good pair of cream slacks (different to chinos) and you’re sorted, don’t over complicate things.

• Also, with most of West Cork bound for campsites in Europe as soon as school holidays hit I feel it’s my duty to share some information I’ve recently come into possession of. Lots of people may already know this but for those who don’t consider this a public service announcement: most French and some Italian resorts insist on men wearing Speedo-type swim wear in the pool. For clarity, I’m referring to the very snug fitting trunks, as opposed to the baggy shorts more commonly seen on West Cork beaches. This is not something that’s just loosely advised or vaguely recommended either; it’s something that’s strictly implemented. If you choose to ignore said advice, sirens will sound, the lifeguard will blow his whistle and people will point. It will get very embarrassing. Kind of makes me glad we’re holidaying at home this year (that and the queues at Dublin Airport).

• Anyway, my husband is doing the Cork City Marathon this weekend and I don’t mind admitting that I’m exhausted from it all. Between figuring out where to position ourselves on route and making the ‘good luck’ banners myself and the six-year-old are wrecked. Seriously, though, I need to get myself a hobby that makes it legit to disappear for hours on end every Saturday morning – preferably one where you don’t look half dead on return though. I’m not at all a fan of running. I once did a half-marathon and I sometimes like to casually drop it into conversation, but I don’t like to get tied down to specifics: that it was around 20 years ago, in Achill (or maybe Aran?), I did it purely for the ‘craic’ (the weekend away and potential to meet fit blokes) and I never ran again. For some unknown reason I stopped ‘formally’ exercising around nine months ago. I gave myself a week or two off and now it’s become some sort of huge mental block in my head and I can’t get going again. Life is also very busy, and yes I know we all have the same 24 hours in the day but I push exercise to the bottom of the list and it never gets done. I have to sort that one out, not least for the sake of my thighs. The thing with walking, though, I find is that it takes so flipping long, a HIIT session is so, well intense, I’m too impatient for yoga, (when does the ‘magic’ happen?), too scared of traffic for cycling and too afraid of water for swimming. What does that leave me with? Power walking it is so. Send me some podcast recommendations please.

• I’m juggling a few Netflix series at the moment mainly because none of them are quite good enough to stop me from straying. There’s The Missing (starring James Nesbitt, who I have a dislike of that’s hard to get past); The Nest (starring DC Arnott from Line of Duty which is a bit distracting) and Liar (starring someone in Downton Abbey whose name I can’t remember). It can all get very confusing of an evening and I’d be better off going to bed (what’s that? Or going for a walk?) What’s the verdict on Conversations with Friends? Don’t lynch me now, maybe I’m missing something but jeepers it’s a bit, I don’t know, awkward. Maybe that’s the point?

• My conversations with friends go more like this: How are things? Era grand, you? The same yeah, grand, very busy, but grand. I’m wrecked though. God, yeah I’m totally wrecked. Go on, I’d better go, I have to collect/drop/bilocate, we must meet up some time, for sure, ok see you... def before the summer’s out we’ll catch up.’ Hardly edge-of-seat stuff but maybe more realistic all the same. Croatia does look stunning, though, in the series. Anyone know what their policy on swimming trunks is?

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