It was a typical day in hell. The hell of commerce, of service to the base needs of survival. It was, to be precise, the second of January, a Friday, in the late afternoon. Amid the turmoil, the boredom, the exhaustion, there was one shining second, a moment of light in the darkness of living.

I am, of course, talking about a boot sighting. These surprise confrontations with a female boot fancier, even though she may not be of my extremity, are islands of hope – and yet also despair – in a day of drudgery. To see a woman in boots is to be reminded of the higher needs. To see her is to experience a shard of hope that life improves. To see her, also, is to rejoice in the prevalence of boot wearing, the wave of fashion washing over the female populace for my pleasure.

This woman, this latest beacon of hope, was about 5'5", and slender. She had light brunette hair, almost mouse colored, but shaped in a glamorous style. Not quite like a fashion model, more like a wealthy Manhattanite. Yet she was only somewhere in her 20's. She also had on a black denim dress, brushed and burnished by use. Under it were black stockings and, clinging to her legs with exquisite tightness, was a pair of black boots, shiny, with square heels that lifted and arched her thighs. She had a plain, but not unattractive face, set in a blend of sternness and unemotion. In many ways, she was “the perfect girl,” the type of woman that men see on the street and give their hearts too – on a daily basis, to hundreds of different women. To me she represented the ideal, a woman who likes boots, who is willing to wear them out, in, anywhere.

The style of her attire was, by now, familiar to me. I have seen many women in the last few months wearing the short skirt, usually dark, black stockings, and shiny boot combination. Aside from thigh boots, it is perhaps the most erotic combination that I have seen since high school, when the boot frenzy first hit me. I am both pleased and distressed that so many women are wearing this costume.

I have no idea where they got it. What movie, what TV show, what fashion designer first inspired it? Even more intriguing, why do women wear the same thing? For that matter, why do people vote for the same candidate, or admire the same stars? But I am not complaining. I like the uniformity, the knowing that there are several women out there right now with the black boot-stockings pairing. And within this uniformity I like the variety, the women with not quite the right boots making do, the adding a fillip with this skirt, with those patterned stocking. My only fear is that this fashion, like all trends, will go away to be supplanted by another latest craze, itself ephemeral.

She went away. The perfect girl left, off with her boyfriend, a bland Hitlerjungen, perhaps unappreciative of her boots and stockings, and perhaps unaware of the broken hearts and frustrated loins she left in her wake.

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