Another thing I do not understand…why wearing socks with sandals is unacceptable.
I might consider it inadvisable under certain circumstances, in that socks might get very dirty; but wearing sandals with socks does not strike me as peculiar.
There have been many times of my life, especially in childhood, when finances were very tight, and all I had for footwear were a pair of boots and a pair of sandals. On a chilly, but dry, day in the the spring or fall, the boots would be too warm while the sandals would be too cold. Wearing socks with the sandals solves the problem.
Another reason I might wear socks with sandals is that sandals can have straps with sharp or rough edges that rub painfully against the skin of my feet. If I am going to walk any distance in sandals, I like to wear socks to have a protective layer between the sandals and my feet – else I end up with painful blisters. I will add that I avoid white socks whenever possible, not because if how it looks, but because those socks will pick up enough dirt to never be white again. Thankfully, wherever Birkenstocks are sold, you can buy those nice thick oatmeal-colored socks.
Along the way, someone decided that sandals with socks was peculiar and enough people agreed to make it one of those unwritten rules that everyone is expected to know about. No doubt, the people who support this rule always have a closet full of shoes for all seasons and have never had blisters on their feet.
Who makes up these rules? What is so wrong about wearing white after Labor Day? On dark fall or winter mornings, white clothing makes you more visible when walking.
What is wrong with wearing brown shoes with black pants? Black and brown hardly clash. As colors, they go well together on numerous breeds of dogs (think Bernese Mountain, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel) and horses and many species of birds.
And what is the problem with the tag sticking out from your shirt at the back of your neck?
If I ever walked out of the ladies restroom with my skirt tucked into the back of my panties, I think I would appreciate someone tactfully drawing it to my attention to save me from further embarrassment. But a tag sticking out from the back of my t-shirt is doing no harm, and sometimes I wear it that way deliberately because the way it feels against my skin is annoying and at the next possible opportunity I will take cut it off with scissors.
Myself, I do wonder about other people’s clothing choices, but it is usually about my perception of comfort as opposed to it just looking lame or stupid, such as: flip-flops in cold weather; wool hats in summer; pants that are obviously too small. But I do allow for the possibility of limited wardrobe when money is short. For example, my mother dressed me in flip-flops one summer and would have had me wearing them into the winter (with socks even!) if the school had allowed it, just to postpone the purchase of new shoes a little longer. And I have known women who gained weight and had no money to buy larger pants, but good intentions to try to lose the weight.
The sands and socks thing strikes me as a very subtle form of “othering”. It is no so much about the idea of someone wearing socks with sandals as it is about someone not finding it peculiar in the first place. Their sensibilities are different and so they must be different.
Else it would not matter at all.