Things with an end - Blog - BERG

Michal, I’m not saying that everyone should always wear sturdy repairable shoes. Just that everyone going “oh, that’s awful” about the waste here aren’t then saying anything about what *is* acceptable.

Why are shoes that last twice as long enough? Why are running shoes that last 650km (to quote Cat, above) or 800-1000km (to quote other sources I’ve seen online), without even a recycling option, the acceptable norm? It seems pretty bad to me that having to replace shoes that often (shoes which are made of more material) is already far from ideal.

Realistically, I can see three types of people who might buy these:

1) Hard core runners who value the lightness. I imagine that professional athletes (like most of us) already make various environmental compromises to further their careers that have a much worse impact than increasing the frequency of shoe-buying (eg, driving or flying to athletics meets).

2) Fashion-conscious people who want something that’s different. They’re going to buy a lot of shoes anyway, and aren’t going to wear them that long, no matter how long they should last.

3) People interested in design who’ll write about them in blog posts. Not a market that’s big enough to threaten the stability of the world with their novelty shoe buying :)

So, I don’t think it’s a *good* thing to make shoes that last less time. But, if it’s a compromise that improves performance for a profession, then I expect it’s far from the only — or the worst — ecological misdemeanour committed for such a cause.

6 Feb 2011 at Twitter

  • 5:48pm: You want me to pay you by cheque?! Why don’t I come round and count out pieces of eight instead? Or pay you in livestock?
  • 5:10pm: @tomcoates @moleitau HOW HARD CAN IT BE? http://tomcoatesshouldgetablog.tumblr.com/
  • 11:44am: Much as I enjoy playing ‘Call of Duty’, seeing its men with guns in the background of Last.fm pages seems very awkward. When ads go wrong.
  • 11:25am: @tomcoates You should get a blog, then you could explain what you mean, rather than just say “it’s wrong”.

6 Feb 2011 in Links