Get out the Band-Aids, ballet flats are back in style. I’ve never taken a dance class in my life, but I’m going to cram my big, flat feet into these little honeys and wait for a huge, watery blister to take my life. My feet haven’t been bloody and shredded for fifteen years, so this summer, I am going to swell them up like Yorkshire pudding. Out are the comfortable sneakers designed for feet, and in are the hard-sided kayaks designed to take your breath away.

The blood stains on the back of these shoes are incriminating. It’s a sweaty, painful emergency that no Band-Aid on earth could begin to mitigate. These little rocket ship slippers have cut through to bone, but it’s all part of the journey. If I can focus my breath and quiet my mind, I can control the voice that’s begging to rip the feet from my legs. It’s amazing how you can continue to walk when you really, really shouldn’t.

I love the chic silhouette of these shoes that will give me plantar fasciitis. They’re so sleek and narrow—my toes have absolutely nowhere to go but into themselves. The little piggies are in a barn that’s far too small for them. Yes, the piglets are screaming. One of my girlfriends lost some toenails at a bar years ago, but she was in heels. Luckily, these ballet flats are so, so flat the only thing I will lose is the ability to bend my knees by morning.

The temperature inside these foot pouches is rising. Their vacuum seal is designed to keep moisture in and cook the meat. My veins are packed full of blood, and the marrow is blazing. If I don’t let the steam out soon, the core will explode. These petite shoes will pop off like champagne corks at a party that no one is happy to be at.

Oh, so this is where bunions come from. These rigid little bear traps have my big toe slanting in medically. Can’t wait to dig some ingrown toenails out with a pair of nail clippers. It’s worth it to look like a French ballerina and feel every single rock underfoot while I plod around in these razorblade pancakes. To have none of the skill or competency of a dancer but all of the pain is the promise of these slip-on weapons.

My ballet flats do look so cute with these trousers. Another fashion option would be to carry them home barefoot and never wear them again. The likelihood of stepping on something sharper and more dangerous than these sheet-metal shoes is low. The possibility of a gentle breeze kissing the flapping holes in the backs of my heels calls to me. I will soak my barking puppies in an Epsom salt bath. When people see my pulverized feet, I will say, “No, no, I’m not a dancer, just a woman enjoying the summer.”