Wednesday, 7 September 2011
By looking at the above shoes I can conclude that; hills wreck shoes when you have no brakes, my toe was poking through the sole of my right foot, I don't brake with my left heal. These shoes lasted just over 3 months, if I learnt to brake with the left heal I would extend the wear time to over four months. This would mean I would only have to buy 3 pairs of shoes a year instead of 4. 1 less pair of shoes a year would make me feel ethically more comfortable. When I think about it carefully I'm disgusted with myself for the amount of shoes I go through and the ecological damaging consequences associated with high shoe turnover. I don't know what Lotek's practice or stance on sweat shops is but being a smaller company my mind says they're more ethical than sneaker giants like Nike 6.0. This puts me at rest a little. 4 pairs a year? Just from the material and manufacturing processes alone the damage is significant, pollutants in rivers, harmful emissions, low waged employees in the East. It all gets my blood boiling and it all weighs on my mind. And that's before we consider the heightened tyre wear that skidding down hills inevitably leads to. I can easily wear through a Federal Fraction tyre every 4 months.
Shoes and tyres can last way over a year if you run a brake. All this product destruction and abuse and expenditure solely caused by brakelessness is irritating. If skidding down busy roads weren't so much fun, if clean brakeless bikes weren't so beautiful, and if dropping a bike and hearing a sound like a hard basketball wasn't so enviable all this rubber wouldn't get wasted.
I've got to way it up, if I'm heading into a dangerous situation and instead of stopping instantly with my intuitive braking stance I'm instead thinking about using the left heal to conserve rubber there's a good chance I'll end up under a car. Would I rather fuel the capitalist world or end up dead on the road? Brake pads only cost £3.99 and they last for ages but the tinkering lubricating adjusting and clutter of a brake is so annoying.
Of all the BMX shoes I've rode Lotek last the longest and look the best so buy some and get awesome.
Lotek (Other BMX shoe brands are available, I think?)