Shoes: The Ultimate Mood Elevating Drug
I think I love my life. I live a relatively healthy existence involving meditation, hiking and all the matcha lattes that LA has to offer, though often defeated by a few too many Mezcals. People peeking may think that my social life is covetable. My work is creative and fun, I am a writer and DJ who has made a living off of personifying and exploiting the wonderful world of creativity I inhabit. My friends are well-traveled intellectuals and the spaces we frequent are always on ever must go to zeitgeist list. Across the map this is perhaps the same in any creative hub, some even consider this the typical millennial existence. Okay, so you're probably going, “Is this like a Noxzema commercial or what?".
And at this point, this is where all that glamour goes into the toilet. The truth is the hustle to make a living off of being creative is exhausting and exploitive; it's been getting harder and harder to get my overworked friends together in one room. Usually when we do get together those neon noir moments of 5 AM glimmers on top of a penthouse somewhere have been replaced by Ubers ordered way before the midnight stroke. With all of this daily ennui, I often find myself depressed and out of touch with the person who should be stepping up. When I was young, I would run around shameless wearing outrageous outfits and talking without a filter to the entire room. I was at my peak joy and bliss musing along the halls of any party. At some point, I feel like I lost that sensibility. That is until I discovered the mood-altering power of the ultimate designer drug... Shoes.
There have been several times where expensive shoes have been my ultimate armor. A pair of clunky Rick Owen boots will make anyone feel like they can take on the night or day. With each stomp, aggressive shoes like these come perfect for creating that sensibility of nonchalant savvy; a far cry from the reality of being hungover at brunch as you overthink each passerby’s gaze. Margiela tabi’s provide a strength that harnesses the sleekness of a ninja in any avant-garde halls of the current it gallery, you may think the art is shit but at least you look like you are proficient enough to critique someone's work. A good pair of shoes offers me a joyous experience that paints a persona that is bold and full of attitude. It's something that you can carry with you daily outside of a special go-to outfit. Perhaps it’s the thought that these vehicles support your entire weight or the compression of the leather on the feet truly ground you. Either way, the touch sensation of the shoes on your soles might actually be the true window to the soul.
Though some may think I am a shoe fetishist or simply insecure, I'd like to think of these as a modern amulet that one wears to ward off bad vibes. Of all the shoes that have come, gone and will come there is one particular pair that has had me so devoted to that I ended up hunting down two extra pairs. These mysterious pedestals are a pair of vintage 90s black leather Muro boots with a platform. For those who don’t know, Muro was a Mexican brand in the 90s that along with Nana's, Fluevog and Dr Martin's help to dress a generation of alternative weirdos. They were the perfect shoes, a pair subversive enough to wear with anything while taking me from a store party to a mega club to a warehouse party. Where several brands and boots have helped to create my identity, these pair fit and perpetuated every person I wanted to be and helped me become. I loved the shoes so much I even brought them into my photo final project in university. A project that involved portraits of me in different clothing and spaces taking on characters while still maintaining the same boots. I had initially found them at my local charity shop covered in DIY glitter, a relic of some size 43 glam raver. I couldn't explain the feeling but I had a bonding moment with the shoes and took them home like an adopted puppy. Once I scrubbed off the caked on glitter and applied a layer of paint the shoes found their full potential.
It is with these shoes that I made my way through six music festivals, they were also the pair worn in 2 1/2 breakups. These were the ones I had celebrated with upon at least five significant hallmarks including: a dear friend’s wedding, my first time traveling around Europe alone and when I found out I lost my father. I find it interesting that an object can be viewed as close as a family member, lover or friend, but when something fits and has been with you through thick and thin maybe the objects place in being there for you and memories you make together are the ultimate joy.
Words / BJ PANDA BEAR