SOTC: AN ESSAY SneakerHead Complaints

In my introductory piece for SST, I wanted to start of with a new Essay Series called SOTC (State of the Culture). I’ll cover a range of topics, but TODAY, let’s dig into how we, as a subculture are some of the WHINIEST consumers out there. If you don’t wanna stick around while I jump into my old man bag, feel free to exit now. You’ve clicked the link. Your traffic has been counted.


People work in whole factories, go through whole apprenticeships, and have whole blueprints rendered by massive companies, designed by highly paid and incredibly scrutinized teams. So when you pay your money on the internet with your bot and wait for 5-7 business days for free shipping and pull them out of the box, WHY do you feel like the first thing you should do is critique?

Here is a proper breakdown of exactly what should happen as your courier delivers your package:

-Run to your shoe room, wherever that may be. Partner in your way? Nudge them gently to the side; The process is important. Ages 22 and younger: Give mom her debit card back.

-Get into the parcel quickly but carefully. Examine the box. The details are important.

*this next step is ritualistically significant*

-Crack open the lid, pick that bad boy up, dive you nose into the sock liner and inhale the nostalgia of the smell of factory adhesive and mass dyed leathers. 

-Now we look at the shoe 360 degrees, while taking more deep breaths to gain a mini-high on that rested adhesive. You’re near euphoria now. You’re not thinking about Stock X. You’re not thinking about how limited they are. You’re present.

-You unlace both shoes, systematically.

-You put them on your foot *gasp! Oh no! They’re not Deadstock 2020 anymore! 😱 Looks like they’re just VVVVVVVVVVVVVNDS NO FLAWS NEVER WORN OUTSIDE TRIED ON FOR SIZING.

-You re-lace the shoe while it’s on your foot for the optimal feel. Now you get vain. 😏 You think about how you’re gonna kill em with these. You get that perfect lace, with your own sauce on it, but for the love of all things precious, don’t tuck your laces behind the tongue. Please don’t. Personal pet peeve. Just tie em, or rock em all the way out a la Wale.

-You have finally reached the point at which you can flex post them. Flip em, trade em, put em on ice, whatever your passion. But to honor the hundreds of hours that went into this shoe, spend 20 minutes with them to truly appreciate them. 

Ask yourself these questions before you consider an unwarranted spout of your quality opinions on the internet:

Are you a leather tanner? Expert in sewing patterns? Machine worker breathing in hot glue all day? No? Mkay.

“Meh the leather isn’t SBB.” “Oh this stitching isn’t consistent with the previous retro.” Several things here: The constant leather gripes, especially with Jordan Brand is wild to me. Watching Mike play in the kicks was what made them special to own. Nobody forced you into owning this merchandise, and stole your money. If its so bad, return it… No? You’d rather let them sit and “see what market does”. Ah… Seems that was your intent all along. Profit. Not passion. Habit. Not Hobby. Vulture. Not Culture.

To put it back to you, the reader, if you felt some type of way reading this, it’s just a conversational gut check. We’ve ALL bought and sold. I tend to only do so when I have a shoe that I’ve fallen out of love with that can be dealt to acquire a shoe that is either outside my usual budget or that I know someone else will love. But my number one rule in sneaker buying: If I don’t love it, I don’t buy it. Period. Be confident to like what you like and not because some sneaker famous person gave it their blessing. What are some ways we can cut down on the crying and amp up the love in the community? Good to meet you. Aaron Henderson (doublea_doeskix)

Aaron is a father of 2 beautiful boys and husband to Taylor. A Tennessee born- self proclaimed Lord of Snacks and lover of shoes. I love Kobe, pre-2017 Kanye, and the board game MONOPOLY. I will also thrash you at Guitar Hero. You name the song, I guarantee a you an L. If you have to ask me if I play on Expert, I already know I’ll crush you. EA SPORTS: PLEASE BRING BACK NBA STREET VOL 2 TO NEXT GEN SYSTEMS.

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