An L.A. Native’s Guide to Summer ‘No-Nos’: No Heels at the Beach!

The first hot weekend in L.A.–And I’m talking about when it’s 85 degrees by 9 a.m., the air is stagnant and those who continue to excercise outside are just showoffs–usually sends the local masses migrating to the beach.
There are two distinct categories of “Summer Girls”: Those that wear flip flops,and those that wear high heels to the beach. Having grown up at the beach myself, I firmly believe that heels have no place near sand or slippery surfaces.
I hate to say it, because it sounds a bit snobby, but you can tell the flip-flop girls from the high heel girls from a mile away. The flip flop girls wear string bikinis and Reefs and let their hair air dry in the sun. The high-heel wearing girls wear the designer stuff that look amazing on the pages of Vogue but, sadly, odd and potentially deadly on the sand.

When I lived in Manhattan Beach, my new roomie startled me one afternoon by emerging from her room wearing a white one-piece suit with diamond shaped pieces cut from both her sides, and two giant pieces cut out from each side of her rear. She paired this with a smattering of gold bangles, some giant Bono-sized sunglasses and sky-high Christian Louboutin wedge heels. Wow. I normally bow down to the girl who owns anything by Christian Louboutin, but that day, as we walked side by side down to watch the professional volleyball players sweat and flex their muscles, she in her ass-chapping white get-up and I in my faded cotton triangle top and cut off shorts, I have to say I felt a little bit like the odd couple. Where were we? Vegas?

At any rate, the poor thing tripped and leaped forward several times trying to balance those Louboutin wedges in the hot sand. Oh, did I mention she also had one of those gigantic fold-up beach chairs strapped to her back? She looked like a stripper on a camping trip. I traipsed after her from a safe distance. She finally got the hint that she wasn’t going to be able to walk in her shoes and, untying them, slipped them off. This was also a bad decision, because no sooner had she done this then the pink skin of her feet met with the blistering heat of the sand. Still wearing the fold-up chair, she began gyrating back and forth, doing what athletes and trainers like to call “High Knees”, trying her best to stay calm but looking like she was having an epileptic fit. Of course I jumped to attention and gave her my towel to stand on and that was the pinnacle of our day at the beach. We decided to set up camp right there and avoid any more unwanted attention.
My point with all of this is that this summer when you go to the beach, or the pool or wherever you go to stay cool,of course you must preserve all that is your individual sense of style. But take it from me when I say, there really is something to that saying, “When in Rome..”


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