I had never heard of wikiFeet until someone sent me the link to my profile, says politics journalist Laura Bassett in The Cut. For those also unaware, wikiFeet is a website where foot fetishists upload pictures of celebrities’ feet and rate them. “My feet had a very sad 3.5 out of 5 stars rating.”
“I wasn’t offended or unnerved,” says Bassett, more curious as to why strangers were uploading images of her feet to the internet. She posted a message via Instagram Stories, asking who had done it. “I assumed no one would come forward,” but sure enough, Robert Hamilton, a 58-year-old salesman from New Jersey, fessed up.
Hamilton has been a foot fetishist since he was six, and now posts regularly on wikiFeet. I think about the ethics of it, he told Bassett, “I do have a conscience.” Besides, he would never rate someone’s feet poorly – “I don’t wanna hurt their feelings.” And Hamilton’s fetish extends into real life, too. Once, during a hospital stay, he charmed his nurse into showing him her toes. “I actually took her out to dinner a couple of times,” he says. “I can just get girls out of their shoes, it’s a thing I can do.”
Move over, darling
One-night stands are great, but “the idea of a guy sharing a bed with me makes me feel completely vulnerable and exposed”, says Annie Lord in Vogue. It’s all to do with control. When you’re awake and around people, “you can shake your hair at the root so it’s got more volume” or “arch your back so your bum looks bigger”. It’s a sort of low-level deception.
Sleep, however, is high risk. “Your body behaves how it wants” – you could snore, or drool, or “start moaning ‘Mr McLean’ midway through a sex dream about your old science teacher”. As the writer Milan Kundera says in The Unbearable Lightness of Being: “Making love with a woman and sleeping with a woman are two separate passions, not merely different but opposite.”