Events are great. You learn from interesting speakers, hear transformative keynotes, meet new people, catch up with acquaintances, and see tons of innovative products. But oh, how your feet ache at the end of each day when you aren't wearing the right shoes.
Karen Field, EE Times' intrepid SVP editorial director, teetered through last month's DesignCon -- her own feet uncomfortably squeezed into a pair of knockout red Jimmy Choos -- on an admittedly unscientific survey of footwear. While practicality pretty much trumped trendy, she discovered styles ranging from webbed to worn, from colorful to circumspect, and at least one pair that would not have looked out of place sticking out from under a house in Kansas (see image below.)
Click on the first image to stroll through our slideshow of engineering footwear for inspiration in planning your next business trip. Maybe we'll see you -- and your shoes -- at EE Live in San Jose, Calif.
Name: Jim Landowski Occupation: Software consultant, JL Consulting Shoe brand: Friis (a Danish brand)
"See my designer socks? They match my shoes!"
I've seen some engineers wearing pretty swank shoes, but there are also those who prefer function over form. When I was in-between jobs a few years ago, I needed a pair of tennis shoes. Normally I have bought brand names shoes, typically Nikes, however at this time, I thought why not save a little money and buy a non-brand shoe? They are probaby all the same anyhow, and can I really justify the extra cost when I am looking for work? So I bought one of the cheaper pairs on the shelf at the sporting goods store. This turned out to be a bad decision. They began to hurt my feet, and they also began to fall apart very quickly. I lived with this foot torture for about 4 months, trying to eek my money's worth out of them, and finally threw them away. Your feet our too valuable to treat them poorly. Support your feet and they will support you. :)
Speaking of style, when I was in school, my second quarter calculus professor would sometimes wear one green a one red sock to class. He also wore colorful ties. There was a rumor that a red tie meant "kill" (as in tough exam), and a green tie, worn the day after the exam meant "peace". Not sure if that was true and I think we were afraid to ask. His hair was often a bit disheveled, which added to his mystique. He had a reputation as a somewhat eccentric and tough teacher, but I found that he mostly taugtht and tested from the text book, which seemed fair. He would always invent titles for the top of his exams, for example, one calculus test was entitled "Getting Integrated" (har!). I do remember him passing out the exams one test day and muttering, "when I created this test I cackled like a maniac." I had to crack a smile at that one. Good times...
@BeAlert That's a good one! In a burst of spring cleaning awhile back, I decided that my husband's Brooks running shoes were looking grubby and since he had two pair i threw one out. Except I threw out a left shoe of one color trim and a right shoe of the other color trim - so now he truly has a mismatched pair!
@Karen - "What's the saying about everything is black in the dark?"
Some time ago I got a set of toiletries for a birthday or Xmas. I don't use them very often. Recently we were off to some function and my wife said "put some of your nice deodorant on". I went to the bathroom cupboard, reached in and got what looked like the deodorant and gave my armpit a good spray. And realised I had got the shaving cream. I thought that only happened in cartoons.....
I was a bit surprised at the number of name-brand shoes in this article. But that may just be due to the fact that, to me, shoes are more or less an after-thought. I buy my shoes for squishy soles and wear them long past their life expectancy.
For some reason, my right shoe always wears down faster than the left. Depending on which shoe I pick up first, it either looks like they're just a little over worn, or look like they need some duck tape.