March 21, 2006
An All Star no more
A few years ago, back when we lived in Connecticut and I had a fancy university job (well, at least that's come full circle), I wrote an entry about my shoe love. There was a time when all I wore were fun tennis shoes, mostly Converse Chuck Taylors and Vans. They were the item of choice when I was in need of retail therapy, and they gave me the illusion of youth. Say what you will about me, but I was a Fun Shoe Guy.
I haven't been able to wear my Chuck Taylors for about a year now, not for any length of time, and since I got my diagnosis, I now know why. I've recently embraced the Way of the Gimp Shoe, although I went with the New Balance which, in addition to being doctor-approved for younger beedies patients with early onset neuropathy issues, are cheaper and much less sad and gimply than the actual medical diabetic shoes. I now have two pairs of shoes that I can wear, as well as my old ugly leather slip-ons. And that's cool, I can deal with that. If I can quit drinking, I can quit wearing fun shoes. (As for the drinking thing, my pancreas is an evil little monster for taking away my booze. Just so you know. I'm a hoot at social gatherings now, trust me.)
The problem for me is that having all my old shoe friends sitting in the closet is both a sad reminder of better days and an unhealthy temptation. The few times I've tried to wear a pair of Chucks or Vans just for old times sake have ended in limping sorrow.
Someone suggested that I try to sell them on eBay, which I thought was both funny and a little nasty. Remember that part about how I wore them almost every day of my life? Even spread out among half a dozen pairs of Chucks and four pairs of Vans, that's still a lot of time spent on my big feet. Even given the fact that I wasn't exactly out there playing basketball in them, we're still talking about shoes that aren't even remotely new.
But I went on eBay, and sure enough, people are selling nasty old Chuck Taylors. I think the key word they all use is "vintage", which in some cases means that they are shoes from like the 60s that haven't been in production for years and would be of interest to collectors. But a lot of the ones I looked at were clearly just used. Still, people are out there buying them.
So sure, I'll give it a shot. I've never sold anything on eBay, but then I never had a hot item like smelly, old, freakishly large, extremely distressed, VINTAGE tennis shoes to offer, either.