If you live in the U.S., you’ve probably seen them in some neighborhood at some point in your life. No we’re not talking about pigeons, although pigeons are literally everywhere all the time. We’re talking about sneaks on the wire, shoe-tossing, telephone line shoes, and so on.
There’s a bunch of different names for these, but this cultural icon requires three things: shoes, laces, and a telephone line. Growing up, if you’ve had all three you were going to decorate the neighborhood.
You’ve definitely seen these before in real life. Shoot, unless you’re living somewhere they don’t use phones, you’ve probably seen this at some point in the last week. I saw a pair this morning. You ever wonder why people do this? Or better yet, why people do this? It’s one of those thing that just happens, like pigeons.
If you’ve ever had the opportunity to do this to one of your homies as a prank, you know you need a good pair of shoelaces to toss them up.
Not saying suggesting you do this, but it’s like a rite of passage for bored kids in the summer. Growing up, by August there was always a bunch of beat up Chucks and a random pair of Dunk Mids hanging all up around my neighborhood.
The funny thing about it was the Chucks part. If you’ve ever had a pair of Chucks, you know they can take a beating and look cool. These are classics, from the classic flat laces to the high top canvas walls, so a little wear and tear didn’t look terrible. You could basically just swap out the laces until the shoe itself fell apart. Then at some point, like they were on a clock, they basically exploded and you were done with them.
Growing up I’d always see Chucks hanging from those long flat laces that seemed to keep for years. But there’s something to that quality. You could tie up the lace ends of your Chuck Taylor throw ‘em on the wire and they would hang there for years. Like years, no joke.
The shoes on a wire are a pretty good example to durability. Over time, the shoes will slowly deteriorate but that wouldn’t even matter. The laces would stick.
Again, I’m not saying I condone this but can you imagine if you picked up a pair of our premium rope laces and used these to toss a pair of shoes? They’d be up on the wire for generations. You could point out to your son like, “yo, I threw those up there back when I was a youngster.” Think about this, grab a pair of bright orange joints and no one would dispute whose sneakers those were.
So shouts out to shoe laces for decorating neighborhoods all across the U.S.