Sweden’s winters are long, dark and cold. To compensate for this many Swedes leave these icy shores and head off to warmer climes for a week or two. They top up their tan, get a boost of sunlight and fill up their vitamin D. Somebody once said to me that a week abroad in the winter is almost a human right for a Swede. Of course, that’s rather extreme, but some time away certainly does provide renewed energy as the seasons shift slowly from winter to early spring.
And for many people, me included, it’s not enough to just slip away discretely. Today’s public sphere of social media means that images of the sun fill our phones on a daily basis. It’s not enough to go away. We also need to let everybody know what a great time we’re having in the wonderful heat while friends at home are enduring the bitter winter weather. For some, seeing this is fun, for others irritating.
This week alone, which is Swedish sport break for Stockholm schools, my feed has been full of sunny pictures. Of beaches. And golf courses. And long drinks.
And also full of Swedish feet. Lots and lots of feet. Never mind the selfie, the footsie is all the rage. Never mind the beach, this is proof that I am here! The footsie is not a new concept, in fact it’s rather cliched and ironic nowadays. A quick look at Trip Advisor and you can see the massive amount of feet pictures uploaded there. And they seem to cause a bit of heated debate. One reviewer writes:
‘I have to say .. 98% of the feet pictures are disgusting! There are very few truly attractive feet (men or women) People don’t take into account that we all don’t see your piggly wigglies with the same eye. Whether barefoot, or fabulously painted, tattooed or the shoe/sandal is to die for .. I simply don’t want to them. Leave the foot photography to professionals who know how to make a foot beautiful.’
And somebody else writes in defence:
‘I would never apologize for a foot pic. For me, none are meant to offend or tread on boundaries of good taste. For me it is almost like a bit of freedom. Living where I do, a person wears socks and shoes most all the time…summer is short… winter feels SUFFOCATING. When I have the chance to shed my socks and shoes…esp WINTER shoes… and feel the soles of my feet on warm earth…and my toes digging into warm sand… well… some of my fav pics in deep winter are memories from a beach where I was able to let my feet (and me) be free. To post such might just be a way of expressing how free and happy a person felt. It is a unique expression of what made them happy. Thank god the internet is fast now and you can click right on by. We are all unique. ‘
So it seems like Swedes are not the only ones with ‘foot fetishes’ on Facebook and other social media. And it seems like from the hot beach, the footsie has become a hot topic which leaves some people, well, hot under the collar!
What do you think about the footsie trend? Let me know in the comments below.