Over the years, Rick Owens has won our grudging admiration for his seemingly inexhaustible ability to create ludicrous menswear. Case in point: These "cargo sandals," which to our eye look like an ugly sports wallet/blood-pressure cuff roosting on a orthopedic forearm splint, which in turn is built on a foamy, Croc-likes sole as imagined by the set designer of Saw III.
As aesthetically awful as they are, what puts them over the top for us is the paradoxical illogic of their ostensible utility. Our contention: Any man who would ever consider wearing cargo pockets on his ankles would in fact already be wearing cargo shorts with more pockets than anyone wearing shorts should ever need. So why would he require even more carrying capacity?
We have two theories here.
1) These sandals are designed for ambivalent nudists, who are drawn to their capacity to both carry a wallet and keys and also distract attention from the fact that the wearer is otherwise naked. With these sandals, we're fairly certain, you could walk buck-naked into a boardroom and everyone's primary response would be, "What the fuck are you wearing on your feet?"
2) Rick Owens is a crazy genius whose thought processes we should not even attempt to decipher.
Currently we are learning toward the second option and starting to think about Rick Owens in a new way. While we continue to maintain that you should never ever wear his most ridiculousofferings, it has crossed our minds that we should begin to collect some of these things as a kind of conceptual art, for display inside sterile vitrines that we would surreptitiously install into, say, Lars Ulrich's man cave.
The takeaway: If these sandals drop from their current sale price of $457.50 to $300 or below, we may put our plans into action.
Q: What is your take on Rick Owens' designs? --Mark
A: His pants are too skinny, his tops are too blousy, and it's all about 50% overpriced. But his outerwear is outstanding and highly recommended (at the right price).
1 raw sugar cube
2 dashes Angostura bitters
3 oz bourbon
On bottom of Old Fashioned glass (what else?) dribble bitters on sugar cube. Muddle. Fill with ice, then with bourbon. Garnish with lemon twist. No, not a thick orange wedge, handful of cherries, or a cup of fruit salad. A simple lemon wedge.