I love wearing Converse, but those things hurt my feet. I’m an old-fashioned type, so generally it’s Chucks and Jacks in the shoe stack, yet it only takes half a mile before I’m walking my walk, thugged-out, orthopedic. I should probably admit defeat and concede that I’m not designed for these shoes, but the design classicism keeps drawing me back in. One solution to add mileage was always to pillage Nike SBs for their Anatomically Contoured Zoom Air footbeds, but they only delayed the pain.
This weekend I’ve been giving the drop-in Lunarlon midsole from the Koston One (read some nerdery on that shoe here) some road testing in my Jack Purcells, and it shits on the OX edition footbed, as it narrows towards the forefoot to minimise rubbing on the toecap. Usually, while the toe is smiling, I’m grimacing. Plus it’s fun to merge cutting-edge with a design that dates way, way back – lately, Mr. Russ Bengston,Mr. Nick Schonberger and myself have been discussing how awesome a Lunar and Flywire Chuck would be — even if it was just to anger purists. This cross-pollination of footwear is one comfortable step closer to that dream.
Incidentally, this brand crossover is sanctioned, because Converse is part of NIKE INC. Were it not, it would break a cardinal rule — I’ve grown out of some bizarre sub-culture imposed laws over the last few years, but the prohibition on mixing sneaker brands remains in place. If you wear adidas apparel with Nike shoes, or vice versa, it’s not a good look. And if you attempt to reunite the Dassler brothers in one outfit by merging PUMA and adidas, it’s even worse. It could get more extreme, with embargoes on wearing specific non-sports gear alongside the branded footwear that don’t have a collaborative relationship, but that’s just strange. Converse and Nike are now siblings, so the alliance creates a certain creative freedom.
But if we’re going to delve deeper, does that sanction wearing Nike with P.F. Flyers? For all the discomfort, the Jack Purcell’s selling point was once Posture Foundation technology to aid comfort, and it was introduced by the BFGoodrich tyre company as a badminton shoe in the mid 1930s. The BF company also started P.F. (Posture Foundation) Flyers in 1937 using a technology they’d created in 1933. There were other shoes in the Jack Purcell line by the late 1960s, with Jack Purcell by BF Goodrich making the capless Jack Purcell RaceAround (relatively recently retroed by Converse), the adidas-alike Jack Purcell Indy 500 (a lawsuit waiting to happen) and the Jack Purcell Windjammer (recently retroed by P.F. Flyers under New Balance ownership minus the Purcell name — does that mean you can wear NB and Nike with immunity?).
In 1972, Converse bought P.F. but apparently legal issues meant the purchase never took place in it’s entirety, but they got the licence to make the Purcell. This humble little shoe spans several brands, and it’s worth noting that the art in that Windjammer seems to be by the amazing Bob Peake, who designed the posters for ‘Apocalypse Now,’ ‘Enter the Dragon’ and a lot, lot more, vying with Drew Struzan for hero status.
Digression time. I watched John Carpenter’s ‘The Ward’ yesterday with mild anticipation. I appreciate that ‘Ghosts of Mars’ is unforgivably bad and that ‘Escape From LA’ should never have happened, but ‘Cigarette Burns’ for ‘Masters of Horror’ was interesting and because I forgot the majority of it immediately after watching, ‘Pro Life’ with the devil coming to claim back his kid from an abortion clinic was a madcap enough failure for me to think fondly of it. After a decade out of movie making, one of my heroes directed a film that looks a little like a Canadian TV-movie and feel like ‘Halloween II’ and a sail way too close to the plot of a film I won’t name for spoiler purposes. Still, I quite liked the font for the title lettering. Even if it didn’t feel quite like my beloved Albertus MT, there was still a lithe, gothic look to it. For that reason, I enjoyed it for around two minutes and trundled through the rest — though it’s not as bad as George A. Romero’s ‘Survival of the Dead’ or Dario Argento’s ‘Giallo’ in the genre-director-off-the-boil stakes. Plus Carpenter told Dazed & Confused that he likes to sing along to Pink’s ‘Get the Party Started,’ so I’m blaming her for this CGI-aided damp squib of a film.
I hadn’t seen this 1986 image of Donald Duck wooing Daisy in full Paninari getup before until I picked up a fortieth anniversary Moncler book from a few years back. I’ve seen Mickey rendered in hardrock mode with some big boots on and a scowl, but a dayglo Donald seemed to be out to replace the brand’s trademark duck with that Moncler vest and nubuck Timberland boots. Italy’s consumerist convergence of brands somehow managed to echo elements of casual, mod, NYC’s street level boosters, hip-hop uniforms and even today’s breed of slimline chino twat. Donald got there before you all and he got the girl as a result.
Whenever I’m feeling ill, I watch a double bill of ‘Death Wish III’ and ‘Shottas’ — both films have healing properties through sheer mindlessness and are as riddled with errors as they are bullets, but I still can’t get enough of the disregard for period looks that ‘Shottas’ maintains. If you’re going to have a 1978 flashback scene with a stashed shooter, it’s best not to use a distinctive shoe like 1996’s Jordan XII to hide the weapon. The Hilfiger boxers in that scene are bad enough, but this was some progressive footwear for the 1970s. ‘Shottas’ is far too yard to care for wardrobe accuracy.
And what better way to celebrate a holiday weekend than with a very, very sincere Swiss documentary on Celtic Frost that somebody has kindly uploaded onto YouTube with English subtitles?