Dear Terrence,

leica-m-monochrom-typ-246-black-chrome-finish-typ-baseline_teaser-307x205I try not to be too terribly materialistic. There are a few objects in life I want, and I already have most of them. Sure, I’d like a classic, well-worn guitar, but mine is fine. Certainly I wouldn’t turn down a gift like a Leica M Monochrom (or even a Fuji X-Pro2) and a bag of lenses to go with it, but my X100, bought used, does the same basic thing. Yes, I would love to have a Pinarello Dogma F8, but I never will, and even if I had one, I wouldn’t use it for my most common form of cycling, namely commuting. In the end, I know they’re just objects, and well beyond my means and needs.

Fortunately, your obsession is with something significantly cheaper, but I still worry. Your whole being seems wrapped up in shoes. Every chance you get, you’re looking at this or that style of Nike Jordans online. (Sorry, I know nothing about them beyond that. I know you talk about this type and that type, but it’s all unknown to me — much like my tossing around Leica M Monochrom and Pinarello Dogma. Same principle.) Still, on more than one occasion, I’ve heard you say that you’d get every single type of Jordan available as soon as you get the money. I’ve seen you criticize others because of the “ratty” shoes they’re wearing. I’ve seen the way you brag about the shoes you own.

First of all, I can’t unravel your obsession with shoes. Even when I was a teenage boy, I gave very little thought to the shoes I wore. They served a function, nothing more. This pair of shoes is for skateboarding; that pair of shoes is for church; this pair, school. A pair of sandals added to the mix and that was the extent of my shoe wardrobe.

More importantly, though, I worry that you’re deriving an unhealthy amount of self-esteem and self-worth from the bits of leather, rubber, and synthetic materials strapped onto your feet. Shoes don’t make you a man. Your actions do.

Sincerely and relatively shoe-poor,
Your Teacher


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s