Tag Archives: compass

The Shoe Journey #1


Maybe it was that random inspiration little voice talking in your head, maybe it was the compass item to be carried with TCKs as souvenir, or maybe it was because I was way to annoyed by my spatially challenged apartment’s shoe shelf overflowing with shoes.  I really wanted to write about something on my blog, but I couldn’t figure out what to write about.  Today, as I walk down street, suddenly with a lightbulb I thought of shoes.

Yeah, yeah, I can picture the male readers of my blog cringing at the corner, thinking “holy hell, Ceberus was another shoe-crazy woman” and expecting a posting bombarded Louboutin, Jimmy Choo, and other brand names with kill hills you can’t possibly pronounce, let alone wear.  Well, no worries, because it won’t be my posting.  I thought of shoes, because, regardless of your place of birth, background, nationality, school, occupation, etc., shoe is something you can’t completely separate from your life, and one of the few things people have in common all over the world.

That being said, I ought to write my first posing shoes about Dr. Marten’s legendary 1460 8-hole boots:


Dr. Marten, 1460 8-hole in black


My father first became Dr. Marten fan when I was still living in South Korea.  That was before when Dr. Marten started their official exporting to Korea.  So how did he know about Dr. Marten?  Living in the center city, it is very easy to be exposed to cutting-edge trendy stuff, voluntarily and involuntarily.   My guess is, my dad was looking for a new pair of shoes, stumbled into local shoe store carrying their direct import shoes, introduced to these sturdy and comfy pair of shoes, and fell in love with them ever since.

Through him I got my first two pairs of DM.  One looked like 2976 (Chelsea) but with more round, upward toe, black.  Another one was the famous 1460 in black.  When my parents’ friends visited our home, they would joke “so your kid is going to army soon?” upon seeing my 1460.  I wore it pretty much all the time with anything.  When I was leaving to States, I carried 1460 with me in my luggage.  Even in States, I would wear it constantly.  Though lesser than when I first got them, I would still keep them, carry them wherever I go and wear them frequently.

One night in my college junior year, I found I can no longer wear my beloved first pair of 1460 black.  Being DM, it was ever-sturdy; but the sole started to crack everywhere visibly, and where the yellow stitch holds sole together with leather started to crack too.  My toes would get cold.

Only then I realized, that this 1460 travelled everywhere with me for more than 10 years.  In Michigan, in Illinois, in Indiana, in Japan, in Korea.  It ran the grass fields of Illinois with me.  It walked the snow-covered fields of Michigan with me.  It walked the campus parking lots with me in Indiana.  It walked the busy pedestrian roads of Tokyo with me.  It walked around Incheon Airport multiple times with me.  Physically, it was closer to me than my parents for the past 8,9 years of my life. Me and my 1460 black – by then we have been together for 12+ years.   But it has to go – its time came to the end.

So just like that, with a small vacuum in my hand, sitting on my bed, I was staring my old pairs of 1460 on Friday night, with lot of melancholy and emotions swirming in me.

Next day, I took my 1460 to the dorm’s shoe donation box.

Then, I ordered another pair of 1460 black. Unlike old days, this new pair isn’t made in UK.  But it’s still that black 1460.

We all know DM is such a unique iconic shoes for rebels and counter-culture movements.  Kurt Cobain wore it.  Joey Ramones wore it.  Joe Strummer wore it.  When Sex Pistoles and their gangs trashed the club, DM was on their feet. Charlatans are still wearing it and so does Avril Lavigne. Sure, it is special because it is a certain statement: screw you, leave me alone.

Yet DM is special to me because some other reason.  Would my 2nd pair of 1460 black will travel all over, like my 1st pair?  I can’t tell, but I hope so.  One thing I know is, no matter how old I am, wherever I am and what kind of journey I am on, I will carry my 2nd pair of 1460 with me, just like my 1st pair.