We, the Crocs

My first introduction to the Euro was in Dublin when Abigail and I finally escaped the British Pound. We were relieved by a lower exchange rate, but still felt a pang of injustice with the addition of every transaction fee. The 5 Euro note is pretty small in relation to the American dollar, and is blue. The next time I got change, I got a pink 10 Euro note that wasn’t much bigger, only confirming my suspicion that Euros are really Monopoly money. But what treasures that Monopoly money can buy! I’m not talkin’ the Pennsylvania Railroad or a thimble. I’m talkin’ genie pants and gladiator sandals. Spaniards are known for being more formal than Americans, and I’ve found that to be true, but sometimes I see a bit of the Romani gypsy influence peeking through. Take, for instance, the genie pants phenomenon. Women everywhere in Spain own genie pants. And when I say genie pants, I mean genie pants — like Genie in Aladdin, or Shaq in Kazaam. Abigail thinks they’re ridiculous, but I have to confess I think they’re awesome. Women also wear gladiator sandals almost exclusively. I have yet to see a Spanish woman wearing sneakers. While most Spaniards wouldn’t be caught dead in athletic wear, they can somehow justify Crocs. Crocs are hard enough to justify stateside, but I usually explain them away by pitying the hick inside everyone (this is also how I explain away Country music and men wearing tank tops). How and when did Crocs become an international phenomenon? Of all the things to unite the globe, America can proudly stand behind Crocs and McDonalds. Maybe that sinking in my stomach when I see Crocs on a Spaniard or Irishman is actually patriotism. I’ll keep telling myself that.


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