Still lame ...

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Sun Oct 23 01:32:13 UTC 2005

Yes. When I was a kid, we used "highwaters" in exactly the same way.
Would you believe that, back in my day, a pair of "Chucks" cost only
three bucks? Well, that's cheap for these days. It wasn't cheap in
those days, when the minimum wage was $0.25/hr. Chucks also held
pride of place. Second place was held by PF Flyers, made by both Hood
Rubber Co. and B.F. Goodrich Tire Co. Though US Keds were available in
those days, they were as rare as Chucks in the 'hood. PF Flyers were
the tinnishoes of soul.

The other brands either didn't exist - Nike, etc - or, for some
reason, simply weren't available.

BTW, FWIW, I was stunned a few years ago when a colleague showed me
documentary proof that no less a light than Jesse Owens wore Adidas,
even in the Hitler Olympics.


On 10/22/05, Mullins, Bill <Bill.Mullins at> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Mullins, Bill" <Bill.Mullins at US.ARMY.MIL>
> Subject:      Re: Still lame ...
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> >Thanks, Bill. You made it possible to recall that it was Cecil Gant, a
> >blues singer-cum-comedian who introduced me to "Seymours: see more
> >feet than you do shoes."
> In my elementary school days, before Nike became dominant in tennis =
> shoes (pronounced "tennyshoes"), Converse All-Stars ("Limousines for the =
> Feet!") were the best shoes that you could have on the school =
> playground.   Then Keds Red Dots.  If you couldn't afford good tennies, =
> you had to wear "buddies", which was any cheap tennyshoes.  There was =
> even a song about buddies, set to the tune of Col. Bogey's March:
> Buddies
> Make your feet feel fine
> Buddies
> Cost a dollar forty nine
> I forget the rest of the lyrics.
> There was a while that Adidas (All Day I Dream About Sex) was the best =
> shoes.  But eventually Nike took over.  One local shoe store said, in =
> their radio commercials:
> I Like Nikes
> Man Oh Man
> Fish can't wear 'em
> But you and me can.
> And Nike was always pronounced like "Mike", not like the goddess.
> And if you had to keep wearing your pants even if you'd gotten too tall =
> for them, because you couldn't get new ones until next school year, you =
> were wearing "highwaters" (they exposed your ankle, and wouldn't get wet =
> in high water).

-Wilson Gray

More information about the Ads-l mailing list