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Yup. I have been wearing these shoes for so long they have come in and out of style so many times I can’t count the numbers. I grew up with a cousin who was 10 years older than me. Somehow, I ended up with a pair of his old red converse. They were fucking CLOWN shoes. I was a kindergartener the first time I strapped them onto my feet and walked to school. There was no reason for it. I had shoes that fit but I wanted to wear those huge red boats. Slip and slapping the whole way to school. I wasn’t smart enough to wear extra socks or pack the unused part of the shoes with paper. I just synched them down hard and got blisters by the end of the day.

So obviously I stopped wearing them… NOPE! My mom would hide them from me, and I would find them and put them back on. At one point I even hid them from her. I was afraid she was going to “lose” them like she had other articles of clothing I got that was inappropriate. In retrospect the Bahama shorts that I was wearing with these oversized converses was probably doing anything for my popularity. However I loved them.

They reminded me of a lot of old tv shows. They were always on the feet of people going somewhere and doing something. Even if it was just a kid in a Twilight Zone episode. It was the costume I was supposed to wear. Later in the mid 90s they came back in style as skaters would wear them and the 3rd wave of ska bands, I loved had a mixture of Cons and Vans. I loved my Cons and they pushed me into another identity. This time there was music and political action. To be fair the political action of most ska was “Everything is going to be alright!” A cheery optimistic viewpoint right before the societal depression of grunge hit.

Yet the music of grunge and the attitudes where totally different from my ska tapes my shoes still walked me to the CD Warehouse to listen to the CDs. Cobain wore Cons… now called Chucks to denote a difference that I still don’t really understand why. The name change was necessary in popular nomenclature. Still as a high school freshman fitting in was paramount so there was a lot of flannel. Not a great costume for Texas but that is what I did. At least my feet were still comfortable.

The converse stay to this day. I no longer have 15 different pairs in all colors, but I do have a pair of black low tops that find their way onto my feet when nostalgia hits. I can still be seen from time to time “strap shoes to my feet. I got to find a reason. A reason to get on. Got to find a reason my moneys all gone.” As Sublime once said.