There’s always those moments in the sneaker game where you think you’ve had enough. Maybe you’ve struck out on one too many releases. Maybe you’re sick of resellers. Maybe you’re just having one of those days where you can’t help but think “Damn, why do I have so many boxes stacked up in my house?”
Sometimes when unfortunate instances like the ones listed above come up, you think about hanging it up. About getting out of the game. About “retiring” from sneakers, a la Jeremy Guthrie.
But can you really ever “retire” from sneakers?? Is it possible to get out of the game for good? I think that’s unlikely, and there’s a few reasons why.
First of all, when you’re really, truly into sneakers it becomes more than a simple hobby. It becomes a lifestyle, and sneakers get woven into your everyday actions. When you meet someone, the first thing you do is look down at their kicks. When you speak, you use lingo you picked up from the game. They’re forces of habit, and even if you say you’re “done” with sneakers, habits like that are borderline impossible to break.
Secondly, if you’re on the Internet at all (which I’d assume you are, you’re reading this article right now after all) you’re constantly going to be bombarded with sneaker news, updates, and release dates. Even if you’ve stopped copping kicks and going in groups to buy, sell, and trade, you’re going to have a hard time ducking and dodging sneaker news and updates…and if you willingly read ANY of that stuff at all, you’re not really out of the game.
Thirdly, sneakers are a necessity. Sure, you might tell yourself that you want something simple and practical, but once you’ve hit a certain level of sneaker knowledge, it’s hard to not have something fresh on your feet. You got into sneakers because of the individuality of it, and the chance to have something that others don’t. You like standing apart from the crowd, and that’s not something that you can just turn on and off as you please.
So no, it’s really not possible to retire from the sneaker game, unless your interest in sneakers completely dissipates. You can stay away from news, stop camping out for releases, and stop perusing eBay trying to come up on your grails (anyone know where I can find some Supreme Flyknit Lunar 1’s for a decent price?)…but as long as you hold even a passing interest in anything sneaker-related, you’re not out of the game. It’s like Costa Nostra. You can never fully leave.
So embrace your sneaker-loving self. Sure, maybe you can get into the game a little too deep, and you need to pull back, but there’s a good chance you’ll never fully be able to “get out”…and that’s OK. The sneaker game is a beautiful thing.
What do you think? Is it possible to get out of the sneaker game? Would you even want to if you could? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter! We’re always up for a discussion.