Oh, I don’t know – but women just love shoes. Maybe it’s because, unlike clothes, shoes don’t discriminate according to age or waist size, they won’t make you feel fat or inferior and they’ll never cling in the wrong places or make for a bad photo.
Or perhaps it’s because, in the right pair of shoes, you can do just about anything.
Desk to disco? Slip on a glitter wedge. Feeling down in the dumps? Something sumptuous in butter-soft leather. Need to teach someone a lesson? Killer heels. Flirting with feminism? Doc Martens.
What better testament could there be to the transforming power of shoes than this most ubiquitous of fairytales – the story of the downtrodden kitchen girl, the prince and the glass slipper?
Every girl knows about Cinders. She insinuates herself into the female subconscious at an early age. Like it or not, somewhere in the back of every woman’s brain is a happy, simple little place where the right pair of shoes equals love, happiness and a handsome prince. No wonder we’ll queue around the block for them.
It is a wholly irrational obession. But then, we women are not known for being rational when it comes to affairs of the heart.
When we are young, for example, we have a tendency to be attracted to impractical shoes our mothers disapprove of.
As we grow older, we become a little more sophisticated in our tastes – though we still prioritise looks over comfort.
In time, most of us come to favour an all-rounder that works with everything: something aesthetically pleasing yet practical.
The occasional sexy number may still catch our eye but, ultimately, we always return to our comfortable mid-heel.
But while shoes and men often occupy equal space in the female brain, the two are not necessarily equal.
I’m sorry, fellows, but shoes will always have the advantage.
For it is well understood that while a girl can survive without a man, she cannot live without shoes.
This may help to explain the mysterious appeal of the Sex And The City TV series and films, which women adored, but most men (certainly straight ones) found utterly baffling.
The problem was resolved when Big eventually proposed using not a ring, but a jewel-encrusted stiletto, sliding it on to her foot in a gesture that was simultaneously absurd, yet undeniably appropriate.
She should have stuck with the shoes – ultimately, Big caused her nothing but agony.
But then, with men, as with shoes, we women don’t always make the most sensible choice.