Wednesday, March 12, 2008
For me at least when it comes to kick copping. You might hate yourself for watching this, so don't say I didn't warn you. This is a harrowing expose into sneaker culture and should be watched by all. I really don't want to come off like I'm spewing vitriolic lungies. I am still sick so lungies are inevitable, but I'm trying to keep them benign. This flu still wants to chill in the crib. I've made it clear to get the fuck out. On top of that the antibiotics are nasty- full disclosure, I can't swallow pills and these taste worse than the worse taste you can imagine- and it lingers. Back to the video- good for dude that he can afford to cop kicks that have a cumulative value of a down payment on a house. Unless he's the white Rick Ross, I imagine his parents are funding his footwear escapades. To be fair I do like the Air Force 1 Low ID he did- red/white swoosh with the gum bottom is clean- I just would have had a white stich on the sole instead of the red.
The problem with this video, aside from his excessive use of yessirs, strongs, earlies, terrible grammar, and the fact that he wears his shades in the crib, is that the sneaker isn't important, but the price and exclusivity are. It turns into one big pissing contest and becomes a competition between dudes trying to one up each other. Price and availability will always affect an opinion, it's a fact, but the sneaker itself should be the determining factor- how it looks, colors, etc. That is lost today. These young kids, even young adults, are so caught up in it and trying to be fly that they stress their parents or drop every dollar they saved up mowing lawns on some rare shit. That's some pressure. All we had to worry about back in the days was a Starter jacket and possibly a pair of Jordans. Or a pair of Cavariccis for my Italianos. Not $800 Nike SBs (that the Nike Skate Boarding division).
I haven't paid more than 2 bills on a pair of kicks and have no plans of doing so. The first $200 sneaker I copped was the Air Max 95 Neon 1999 retro. This was the 2nd retro of that model, 1997 being the first, and I loved that shoe having never copped it in 1995. I thought I had a connect at Hermann's to get a pair back then but it fell through. So I waited, and finally I pounced. If anything I felt bad for dropping 2 bills- this was around 2001- and the price wasn't anything I wanted to talk about. I would rather brag about getting a steal. Having some clean joints on the feet was all I needed. Turned out the sz 12 was too small. I needed a 13, 12.5 would have been perfect but that's almost impossible to find. I wound up getting a sz 13 off a friend several years ago so it's gravy now. To all potential AM95 buyers, be aware that they run small.
The fucked up thing is that these companies are so aware of the spending habits of this sneaker copping population that they have began to design and produce kicks that start at a price point that the average consumer might find appalling. It should be noted that the excessive prices being paid are not to a direct Nike retailer, but rather to a reseller or consignment shop, namely Flight Club. That means Nike isn't seeing that grotesque mark-up. I imagine Nike's on some Frank White King of NY shit, "A pair of forces get sold on Ebay- I want in." (Give it a listen- this shit never gets old.)
The Nike army moves fast. Special Ops scouted and they're reconnaissance has become evident. They now make an Air Force 1 Supreme Max which retailed in '07 for $225, but with the recession looming nowadays, the price dropped to an even $200. Thank you Nike. Now I can buy milk. Retail on the lowest air force model is $85, followed by $125-$135, increased to $150-$175 depending on the type of release, and then to the $200 cadillac of forces. The $85 model is complete shit- looks and feels like plastic and creases like a motherfucker. The next models might be decent but the majority of quality seem to be only a touch better. The Supreme Max are really nice though- leather insole and lining- top quality leather and a visible air bubble. We shouldn't have to justify the price by saying the quality is great. I mean the quality should be great regardless of the model. But these marketers know how to play and by having us think it's better, we can justify dropping that loot. A lot of the pairs get marked down since they are so expensive- but $150 for a pair of forces is still a grip.
Having completed my diatribe, I am still madly in love with sneakers. I wonder if it's possible to love sneakers and not cop. I will begin the experiment. There are a couple on my hitlist that will be grandfathered- just need to complete the puzzle. About 2 months ago I took photos for a sneaker magazine that was interested in featuring my Air Force 1s. I don't think they're going to run due to the not-so-professional quality of the images. They work GREAT for this blog however, so I'll share. It took so much energy taking those shits out and putting them back that it's only right that somebody reaps the fruits of my labor. The first pair bottom left cost me $62 and they made 24,364 pairs, then $93 limited to 12,500 pairs, then $85... I kid. The fucked up shit is that I remember the price and location of coppage for almost each sneaker. Good memories I guess, or trauma inducing which cause me to carry this shit everyday.