Grail vs. Obsession

This week I talked to the guys at The Sneaker Podcast about my recent pick-ups, my blog and my thoughts on sneakers in general. Thanks so much to them for having me on!

As part of the conversation, we discussed my Jordan Tokyo 5s and I mentioned that they were not a grail to me… even though I was excited to get them. I think that was a little surprising to the guys and probably to lots of people listening. So lets talk a little bit about what I mean when I say “grails”. I have been thinking about it a lot since the conversation and I realize that I need to use more precise language.


Want these.

I spend a lot of time thinking about sneakers. At any given time there are probably 8-10 sneakers I focus myself on – checking for them online, seeing what the prices are on StockX or FlightClub, tracking down rumours of sales in my size. I have posted about those sneakers on this blog before and typically refer to them as grails. Right now some of those sneakers include the Nike HyperAdapt, Asics x Ronnie Fieg “Homage”, Adidas x SNS “Tee-Time” and the Nike Air Max Patta Cords. All of these sneakers have some things in common: they are fairly available but challenging to find, they are typically priced somewhere I can almost afford and used pairs in good condition are available. All that combines to mean that with a little (a lot) of time and effort and money I might be able to own and wear these sneakers.┬áIt is worth it for me to spend all that energy on shoes like these.


These too.

You know what sneakers I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about? Nike Air Max “Cherrywoods”. They are my all time favourite Air Max (like everyone else). They are perfect to me in every way and it makes me happy to see pics of them. But. Pairs of Cherrywoods are extremely rare in Toronto and even more rare in my size. Those that are available overseas, even in used condition, are way out of my price range. It is extremely unlikely that any amount of effort I put in will result in me successfully getting a pair. Jordan 5 Tokyos were exactly the same thing; beautiful but totally inaccessible.


One day these will be mine.


So when I say that those things are not my grails I think that I am just not using the right words. They are my grails – impossible and unattainable. Those sneakers I put in work every day to try and get? Those are my obsessions.