Forget #TheDress – Today’s Viral Photo Is All About #TheShoe

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  • Which colour of nail polish goes best with this shoe? What colour even is the shoe? Honestly, our eyes might explode from the stress of it all

    Another day, another viral photograph to make you question everything you thought you knew about mankind, the universe and, well, nail polish.

    Following on from The Dress, a Twitter user called @totallymendes posted an image of a magenta shoe, next to two bottles of unnamed nail varnish. ‘WHICH COLOR MATCHES THE SHOE BEST?’ she asks.

    Unfortunately, 6697 retweets and 7769 favourites later, nobody seems to know. And it’s really, really frustrating.

    But before you find your stress levels rising and feel beads of sweat rolling their way down your forehead, lifestyle expert Terry Trespicio says it’s important to take opticial illusions such as this one with a pinch of salt.

    ‘Essentially, this is a litmus test of tolerance and perspective. And I believe you should ask anyone you plan to work with or sleep with what they thought of it. Not so much to determine their eyesight, but to find out how they react when their worldview is challenged or threatened.’

    She reckons that if you view #TheDress or #TheShoe and react by going ‘Argh, WTF is going on’, then it means you’re struggling to process new information.

    ‘Your stress response may keep you safe, but it can be a hindrance to absorbing new info (or sleeping). You translate new and conflicting information from a place of fear, and that can keep you from getting all the facts clear, causing you to make an emotional leap to the wrong conclusion. Yup. I do that.’

    And if you react by going ‘Argh, WTF is wrong with me?’, then you’re maybe not feeling as confident as you might be.’This response stems from insecurity, a close cousin of fear, and assumes that you have a problem. You thought, My eyes are broken. Or, worse: I’m different from everyone else, and I’m flawed in some way… When something isn’t adding up right (“It’s white! Isn’t it?”), you tend to blame yourself, maybe a lot of the time.’

    Which is a very wise way of thinking about it.

    But either way, there are a few things that we can take away from this:

    A) Eyesight is a funny old thing.

    B) Are we supposed to be coordinating our nails to our shoes anyway?

    C) We all have far, far too much time on our hands.

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