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Posted on Monday, March 5th, 2007

Dave!I didn't get any sleep last night, so after my morning meeting I decided to catch up on some shut-eyet back at the hotel. This was a pipe dream, however, because housekeeping service was ramming their noisy vacuum into every wall, door, and piece of furniture on my floor.

Eventually I gave up on sleep and decided to head into the city.

Fortunately, it was another beautiful day in Chicago, with blue skies (tempered by freezing winds). This was a nice follow-up to the weather last night when the skies were clear, and the full moon looked amazing hanging over the river...

Chicago Moon

I hadn't been to The Shedd Aquarium in ages, and decided to pay a visit. After the Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan in Japan, it's one of my most favorite fishy places...

Shedd Aquarium

But The Shedd offers plenty more than just fish. My most-beloved creatures on earth are lizards and frogs, which are nicely represented in various exhibits...

Shedd Aquarium

I also like snakes, and there were some exotic species hanging out at The Shedd, like these two guys who look like they're sleeping in a tree...

Shedd Aquarium

They also have otters, seals, a beluga whale, and even a penguins exhibit...

Shedd Aquarium

The theming of the various exhibits is lush and fun to look at, but the stars of the show are definitely the creatures who inhabit the place. My favorite this time around was a cool frog who was just chilling out in the water and watching people walk by...

Shedd Aquarium

After blowing over two hours at the aquarium, I decided to get some new footwear. My last four pairs of shoes were bought at NikeTown Chicago, so I didn't think there was any reason to break that tradition for my new pair. Fortunately, they had the shoes I wanted, and all I had to do was wait for them to be brought up. While I was waiting, a woman and her high school-aged son came wandering by. The son was interested in a limited edition pair of Nike GOLD Air Force One shoes. They come with 24k gold-plated tips on the laces, and a gold-plated belt-buckle and keychain to match...

Nike Air Force GOLD!

I wouldn't wear them, but the kid wanted them. Even once he found out that they carried a $2000 price tag.

And here's the kicker... HE BOUGHT THEM!

The mother's question was "what you want with a pair of $2000 shoes? That's a mortgage payment! But it's your money, so I'm just going to sit down over here and be quiet while you spend it."

MY question would have been "where the f#@% does a high school student get $2000 to spend on shoes?"

Once I had purchased my far, far cheaper shoes, I met up with some friends who drove down from Kenosha to have dinner with me and wander down the Magnificent Mile for a while. I ate entirely too much, so now I'm taking some Pepto Bismol and going to bed.

And thus ends my last day in the Windy City.

Now that I think about it, I really should have went back and bought a pair of $2000 gold-plated shoes so I could be all cool at TequilaCon. Of course, that would just ensure that they would get soaked in beer or puked on, so maybe it's for the best I didn't.

Categories: Travel 2007Click To It: Permalink


  1. RW says:

    PEPTO BISMOL!!?? Don’t talk to me about Pepto BISMOL…!

  2. zuhn says:

    That kid is going to be walking home barefoot his first day at school with those shoes.

  3. ms. sizzle says:

    seriously how DOES a kid get that much money?! and what kind of mom just sits back while her kid buys such a thing?


    wow. that really got me worked up.

  4. Mooselet says:

    Gold. Plated. Sneakers. There are no words, except are they INSANE????

  5. Mooselet says:

    Oh, and I love your fishy pics. Very colourful.

  6. $2000!!! I can’t imagine. Even if I won the $340 million lotto, I can’t imagine spending that much on shoes. Why? They’re just shoes….

    Well, maybe a pair of the cool blinky ones that that little kids wear (custom made in my size).

  7. margalit says:

    Did the young man look to be about 13 years old? A young teen? Because I’m betting that was bar mitzvah money.

    What a freaking waste of $2000. Those shoes are fugly!

  8. Jeff says:

    So does the Nike store have these things in all sizes? Like dozens of pairs of them? Cause that would be one hell of an inventory to have to carry in the hopes that some morons would waste that much money on a stupid pair of shoes.

  9. Your Batman’s can kick the crap outta those Air Force Ones’s anyday.

  10. diane says:

    I was having a conversation recently with some friends about our “first pairs of Doc Martens.” For me, that would be a big fat NONE because my parents did not shell out that kind of money to buy me shoes, and I was saving for college expenses.
    Sorry I missed you today, but I’m glad you got to go to the Shedd. It is a very happy place. πŸ™‚ I love the whales, and the sea otters. The Oceanarium with the window out to Lake Michigan is simply beautiful.

  11. Holy crap. Even I wouldn’t buy $2,000 sneakers.

    I could get at least 2 pairs of Jimmy Choo or Prada shoes for that amount. 4, maybe if I get sandals. The hell?

    Oh yeah. Cool frogs. How do you get such good pictures through the exhibit glass?

  12. The Chad says:

    For $2k, they better do something other than just provide comfort while walking (and they had damn well better be comfy), like maybe a massage or something?

  13. Dustin says:

    Who doesn’t have gold plated sneakers? Dave, I think it’s time to check your priorities.

    You makin’ it down to Portland this weekend?

  14. Laurence says:

    Yesterday, I didn’t understand where you had left. Chicago is splendid. Your photographs are splendid. Except the pair of Nike with 2000 dollars… Wow… the problem is not the “2000 dollars”, The problem is that these Nike are horrible. The person has not only today less money (2000 dollars in less) but moreover, it has officially any taste while carrying these Nike… πŸ˜€

    Have a safe trip !!! πŸ™‚

  15. plink says:

    W.O.W. on the shoes. And since I felt so out of the loop (read: I’m getting old!) I had to look them up – and found these:

    I guess all I can say is at least they’re not $2000. But what do you wear with them?

  16. MRKisThatKid says:

    Do you get to handle any of the snakes? I’ve always wanted to get my hands around a big throbbing, but hopefully not too dangerous specimen.

  17. Stacey says:

    That money could have been better spent on nicer things. Like maybe a Playstation 3.

  18. Karl says:

    I suppose $2,000 sneakers are just as ridiculous as $2,000 rings or $2,000 necklaces. Frankly, I will never understand an outfit that approaches four figures, let alone one item of clothing.

  19. Avitable says:

    Wow. I wouldn’t spend $200 on a pair of shoes. Or an entire wardrobe for that matter.

  20. delmer says:

    A woman came into work the other day wearing a $10 pair of shoes that can best be described as Chuck Taylor knock-offs. I thought they were great in a retro sort of way … they reminded me of the $5.00 Grant Specials I used to wear 40 years ago.

    The frogs seem to be pretty colorful. Did any of them jump up and do the Michigan Rag. Maybe when nobody else was around but you and the frog?

  21. Suzy says:

    I’m always amazed when really artful writers like you, who are addicting to read and highly entertaining, make a grammatical error like “I would have went back” instead of “I would have gone back.”

    The worst part is when you correct someone and they continue to use it. I had 2 friends who used it all the time and finally, right before my head exploded, I said, “Please stop using that word. It’s wrong.” And the guy said, “Really? Nahhhh. Realllllllly?” And kept on using it.

  22. Dave Evanns says:

    Yeah, I agree. That kid will end up barefoot on his way home.

    Either party money, or they were a family from the north suburbs and attends New Trier high school

  23. kapgar says:

    $2,000?!?!?!?! Ten bucks says that he was shot dead and robbed by the time he got home.

  24. aquababie says:

    i just got sick when i read she let the kid buy the shoes. how will young ones learn responsibility if we don’t teach them. what a waste of money.

  25. Michelle says:

    I think my 27 pairs of Nike’s all together might cost that much. Wow.

    I guess if you run back and buy ’em to wear this weekend not only would you be the coolest kid on the block but you’d have a line of people offering to hold your shoes instead of your hair. You know … when you yak up all that Tequila.

  26. Jill says:

    $2000 is *one* mortgage payment??? Ouch! In my world, $2000 is *four* mortgage payments. And would be more than that, if not for outrageous New York State taxes… but that’s a whine for another time.

    That aquarium looks great – thank you for sharing the pictures. I would love to visit it someday!

  27. Dave2 says:

    RW… I am convinced that Pepto Bismol is the ultimate cure. One day they will announce that the cure for cancer has been Pepto Bismol all along, and I will note it with a smile of smug satisfaction.

    Zuhn… Or they’ll get all scuffed up and become worthless. I think I’d rather have them stolen than damaged… then at least I’d be blameless for the tragedy! πŸ˜€

    Ms. Sizzle… I’m guessing he’s pimping out the entire sophomore class and has a drug distribution business on the side.

    Mooselet… I think I would have had better luck if I had actually bothered to photograph some of the fish!

    Gary… If I had 340 million, not only would I have no problem buying a pair of $2000 shoes, I’d buy an extra pair to hang from the mirror in my Ferrari.

    Margalit… Hmmm… possible, but I think he was older than that. Of course, I’ve never been able to guess people’s ages very well. πŸ™

    Diane… It’s a very cool aquarium, but so incredibly pricey! $27.50 to see everything! I could put a down-payment on a pair of Nike Air Force One GOLDs for that!

    Kentucky Girl… Despite the fact that these frogs are highly poisonous, I just jimmied open the locks on the door so I could take photos without the annoying glass getting in the way. Or turned off the flash and got lucky… one of those.

    The Chad… Perhaps NikeTown performs some kind of service when they fit the shoes to you… I was too poor to ask about it!

    Dustin… Yes. I wasn’t planning on going to TequilaCon, but then I heard you were showing up so I changed my mind. You don’t write on your blog very often anymore, and I figured it was the only way to find out what you are up to!

    Laurence… I didn’t much care for the design either, but I suppose there are people who don’t like my Batman shoes, so I guess it’s a good thing they make all kinds of different shoes for every taste! πŸ™‚

    Plink… Well isn’t that a sassy pair of sneaks! Though I don’t tie my shoes, so I’d have a tough time with something like that.

    MRK… Uhhh… I’ve never been curious enough to ask. I’m perfectly happy looking at poisonous snakes from behind glass. You can go to a reptile farm and handle snakes though. But since even non-poisonous snakes have fangs, you might want to be careful where you put it.

    Stacey… Or a SpongeBob Square Pants outdoor activity center with a swing, sandbox, and slide? That would so totally be worth the $2000!

    Karl… I know women who would gladly spend $2000 on a bra and panties so long as their ass looked good in it. Sometimes it’s money well-spent!

    Avitable… That’s about my limit too, because $2000 buys a lot of comics!

    Delmer… Sadly, the frogs were all out of tricks that day. They were quite content to just sit there looking cool and chill out.

    Suzy… I wish that I cared enough about grammar to use the proper language once somebody has told me about it. So long as my meaning is clear, I don’t really care if it’s grammatically correct. I would never SAY “gone” in that context (even though I fully realize using and auxiliary verb demands it), and since I write as if I were speaking, that’s how it’s going to be transcribed. I equate using “gone” with some hillbilly saying “I done gone fishin’ down that there river, pa!” and loathe using it in past pretense circumstances. Fortunately, English is an evolving language, and “gone” is rapidly diminishing in use… mark my words, eventually “went” will be considered proper grammar when used thusly! πŸ™‚

    Dave… They did not look especially wealthy, but anything is possible. He could have a rich uncle who is generous with the birthday money or something? Got a reward for rescuing a priceless dog? Saved money from his paper route for the past 5 years? I haven’t a clue. πŸ™‚

    Kapgar… Or he left them on top of the car while unlocking the door and they blew off the roof into Lake Michigan…

    Aquababie… Well, I totally agree with that, but since I have spent cash foolishly from time to time, I guess I really shouldn’t be allowed to say anything! πŸ™‚

    Michelle… I’d probably cover my shoes with plastic baggies for the event, then hold a private showing (no food or drink allowed) for those wanting to admire my footwear un-bagged!

    Jill… It’s well worth a visit if you are in Chicago! I can’t believe I waited so long to drop in again.

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