Crocs, the rubber shoemaker that seems to have both captured a nation and reviled fashion lovers everywhere, has severely cut its first quarter estimates. Not only are revenue predictions down $25 - $30 million, earnings per share have gone from a 46 cent a share profit to either break-even or a 5-cent per share loss. Ouch! The company is also closing its Canadian manufacturing operation.

Crocs: Would you want your Olympic team wearing these?

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The company blames the soft US economy for the decrease in demand. While we're sure the ailing retail market is part of the downtrend, we can't help but think the ugliness of the product itself has led to lower sales figures (plus, it isn't like Crocs are the most expensive shoe on the planet).

The one silver-lining for Crocs fans (and shareholders) is that sales in Europe and Asia appear to be on the rise. Earlier this week, the New Zealand Olympic team announced that Crocs would be a mandatory part of the athletes uniform (see our gallery below).

Still, we can't help but hope this summer will be relatively Croc-free stateside.