Charlie's Sneaker FAQ and Glossary - L
This FAQ and Glossary defines a number of terms used in regards to athletic shoes, Charlie, or sneakers.
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- LA Gear
brand of sneakers. Most (in)famous for having inserted
electronics inside the midsole so that the sneakers flashed when the wearer moved.
Generally never considered
to be serious athletic shoes. (Wonder why?)
- The most frequently used method to fasten a sneaker
to the foot so it won't fall off. The process of lacing a sneaker consists
of passing the aglets through the eyelets
in a defined pattern.
- Ironically, the "last" is the first thing that an athletic shoe manufacturer starts with during shoe
assembly. The last is a jig, the size and shape of a foot. Sometimes, it's
of some alien being.... given how some sneakers fit! It
serves as a central form for shoe construction. After completing shoe assembly, the
manufacturer removes the last.
- Laver, Rod (Rodney George)
Australian tennis pro of the
1960's. His namesake adidas athletic shoes are unique among
adidas styles in that they have no side striping.
- Laws of Sneaker Obsolescence (First)
- Any sneaker that you really like will be discontinued
and the manufacturer will come out with a new version. The folks that work
for Nike are really bad about
this. The new version, of course, will be
nothing like the old. Typically, the change will be radical: while the old version was a high-top, the new version will be a low-top
(or possibly the opposite). Even the logo will be unrecognizable.
- Laws of Sneaker Obsolescence (Second)
- Any sneaker that you detest will be remain available
indefinitely. Eventual model updates will either fail to improve its
shortcomings or make it even worse.
- Letterman's Jacket
- In the Baby Boomer days, what the
young men at the good
old school wore with great pride (some
would say "arrogance") when they were stars
track, or wrestling.
Now, many schools have other popular sports, including soccer
and volleyball. Now that young women
are also jocks, they also get jackets... but
they use the more politically correct term Varsity Jackets.
- light GEAR
sneaker made by LA
Gear around 1993 that included interchangeable and replaceable light-emitting diode modules.
Also, the user can replace the battery. To shut off the flashing light:
remove the module, turn it over, and reinsert. I (Charlie) had a pair, but the midsole foam turned to powder.
- Lightweight Shoes
- The subset of running shoes that
feature light weight as a prime design directive. One frequently seen example
is the Nike Presto.
- Light-up Sneakers
- They are always available for kids... but not consistently for
adults who want to be kids. Given the E-mail I (Charlie)
get, there's a lot of chronologically grown-up people who want to be kids again.
- Light-up Sneakers, Adult
- Inasmuch as I (Charlie) can determine, LA
Gear is producing them again, but the price tag is in three digits. There are also some cheap ones shipped from China on amazon.com.
- The manufacturer's graphical symbol on a sneaker.
Well-known examples include the adidas Trefoil, the Converse Star and the Nike Swoosh. Spatting is the
mortal enemy of the logo.
- A sneaker that simply misses out on the ankle
support a high-top
provides, leaving the defenseless ankle to fend for itself. If the low-top has
laces, it can also be called an oxford.
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Last Updated: 1 February 2017
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Charlie's Sneaker Pages copyright 1995-2017 by Charles L. Perrin.
READERS PLEASE NOTE: Names of athletic shoe manufacturers, shoe styles, and technologies may be trademarked by the manufacturers. Charlie's Sneaker Pages uses these names solely to describe the shoes with the same familiar nomenclature used by the manufacturer and recognized by the reader.