How I Became More of a “Sneakerhead” When I Stopped Buying Sneakers

I first started paying attention to shoes my senior year of high school. I remember the exact pair that got me hooked; the KD IV “Galaxy”. It was a 95$ sneaker that caught my eye as soon as I saw it. As the release date crept closer my search for release information intensified. I knew I wouldn’t have a chance to get them in-store. School came first and they dropped on a Friday. So I had to put all of my energy into getting them online. I still remember siting on my bed with my laptop as the release timer hit zero. What I remember even better was the disappointment that came as soon as I hit my size. “Sold out,” flashed across the screen as soon as the clock hit zero. How was it possible? Were there that many people who wanted them? If only I knew what I was getting myself into. This was only the beginning.

 

 

Missing the KD’s kept me coming back to try to find something to fill the void. Fast forward a few months later and I wound up getting a pair of team Jordan’s instead. I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.

 

Then as an early birthday present I got the Jordan XI Low “Cherry Red”. I loved them. This was when I was introduced to the world of reselling. (I kept my 11’s but I saw that there was a way to profit off of Jordan’s.) A few weeks later I bought the “Military Blue” Jordan IV with intent to sell. I wound up wearing them nearly 80 times and kept them almost a year. I was hooked.

 

 

As an incoming college freshman my main focus was school. (Props to Northern Illinois University.) Money was tight so I never bought any shoes but I was constantly checking Twitter and sneaker blogs for the newest releases and rumors. It was a simpler time for me. I never had to worry about what I was going to have to buy. I never had to worry about saving money for the newest release. I appreciated everything about the sneaker culture without being actively involved. I was able to get the 88’ White Cement III’s for retail. I promptly sold them for 300$ within 2 days of receiving them. It was the first, and only, time I actually bought a shoe just to sell it and actually sold it.

 

After my freshman year I moved back home and got my first “real” job. (Shout out to McDonald’s.) I nearly blew my entire first paycheck on the “Miami Night” LeBron 9. I overpaid and didn’t care. It quickly seemed like I was buying a pair or two a month. Which isn’t much compared to some of the serious collectors but I was just a regular kid working through school. It seemed excessive.

 

 

Six months after I got my job I had 15 pairs of shoes and I couldn’t have been happier. However, I stopped paying attention to what was going on. I was focused on buying not on observing. I rarely bought a new release; most of my purchases were old Nike SB’s. Eventually I started selling and trading them away and as of today, in my third year of college, I am sitting at around 18 pairs. In those 18 pairs you’ll find Nike SB’s including the Brooklyn Projects Dunk Low Hyperstrike, Levis Hyperstrike, Dunk High Huxtables, Cali Dunk low and many more. Additionally, there are some Ronnie Fieg ASICS’s collabs and some general releases that I love just as much as the limited kicks. I currently don’t own a Jordan or Nike basketball shoe.

 

I haven’t bought a shoe since early September and I am more involved in the sneaker scene than ever. I have returned to the days where I scrounge social media looking for all the newest info. I actively watch YouTube reviews and unboxings. (Shoutout to Yoanty, Tblake, MR FOAMER SIMPSON and of course Hes Kicks.) I can now look at the sneaker industry with new perspective.

 

 

I find it fascinating to observe the trends that have changed. If you had asked me three years ago where the Foamposite would be today I probably wouldn’t have responded with “the outlets.” I’ve watched people complain about retro Jordan quality as they are practically in line for the next release. I’ve seen Nike SB practically fall off the face of the Earth. Now adidas has become a real threat to Nike. The Yeezy’s and the YEEZI’s. So much has changed in only a few short years. I can’t even imagine how some of the original collectors must feel. Every year it seems there are younger and younger people getting involved. Some on their own and some on their parents dime. I can’t wait till I get to the point where I become interested in adding to my collection, but until then I’ll feel relieved that I was able to return to the simple times I loved so much.

 

images via: WSJ, NiceKicks, NikeLeBron

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