Vail Daily column: Long legs come in handy for chasing chickens |

Vail Daily column: Long legs come in handy for chasing chickens

Robert Valko
Dear Darwin
Vail, CO Colorado

Statistically speaking, due to the billions of galaxies and trillions of stars and planets in those galaxies –maybe even an infinite amount of universes – there’s another earth and another “you” out there. At least this is what astronomers and physicists tell us. Don’t ask how; it’s related to research data coming in from quantum physics and that prying “parallel universe” thing.

Great. This means for every guy obsessed with women’s shoes on this planet, there’s an Al Bundy out there cruising around in a Dodge Dart with a stiletto dangling from his rearview mirror. Not exactly what the universe needs when it’s faced with grain shortages that threaten the world’s donut supply.

Does this mean there are alien versions of us? If so, do they have fetishes? Where do fetishes come from anyway? We might look to the aliens who’ve been inhabiting earth for some time now for answers: men. Shoe fetishes are the most common form of fetish, so let’s start there.

Seeing that the thigh bone is connected to the leg bone and many women’s legs are connected to high heels these days, could it be that heels make legs look great because panting human K-9s are easily bamboozled?

Or, is it because evolution just wants men to want long legs?

Evolution may have put long legs on the top-10 list because they come in handy for chasing chickens. And for men, being fast comes in handy for escaping Tyrannosaurus Sex – mythical females going through menopause. ‘Tis true that nature probably designed men to like long legs and women to like taller men because longer legs come in handy for catching prey and avoiding becoming prey.

And what about those pesky fetishes? Some people like big houses and BMWs, while others fixate on cute little noses, leather, or long legs in stockings. Though these preferences seem to be individualistic, they may have evolutionary roots.

House fetishes?

Maybe. But first, a professor of evolutionary psychology might suggest that fetishes arise from associations people make with things that will benefit their reproductive efforts. If Al Bundy is obsessed with blue satin pumps by Manolo Blahnik – $945 at Needless Markups (called Neiman Marcus on this planet) – he’s going down a path that nature wants him to go down: He’s acting in accordance with his genes’ desires to couple with a financially stable mate.

The shoes are potential indicators of wealth. Obviously, monetary security would be good for a Bundy pairing, as it would provide any resulting Bundy weebles with a good backing. It would also help get them into a good university, just as George’s Bush’s dad’s money and status got him into Yale and Harvard. This may be what prompted George W. to once say, “They misunderestimated me,” (Bentonville, Ark., Nov. 6, 2000).

Getting back to feet, the Chinese practice of foot binding – which went on for a thousand years after a prince with a fetish for small feet asked a concubine to dance for him with tightly wrapped feet – came to be associated with class and wealth. Because walking was difficult after the procedure and women couldn’t do much work with feet shaped tennis balls, foot binding came to be a sign of wealth.

Maybe everything’s a fetish: big homes because they’re good to raise weebles in; BMWs because they’re signs of wealth; long legs because they come in handy for hog-tying chickens; and, cute, small noses because parents with them will produce weebles with them, thereby giving them a wicked-cool “boop” button that will attract a larger pool of mating candidates later in life.

While men tend to obsess over really important things like heels and stockings, women are more concerned with frivolous things like good jobs, nice homes and BMWs. Hmmm. Maybe a man’s obsession with shoes and legs is evolution’s equivalent of a woman’s desire to marry a financially stable male. The house fetish is born.

Robert Valko is a graduate of Northwestern University. Email him with column ideas at

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