Wednesday, June 23, 2004

Spring Is In the...Shoe?

I have a spring in my step.

No, really. Literally (LIT-uhr-ully).

A couple of weeks ago, I saw a woman wearing a pair of tennis shoes that looked like something Wile E. Coyote would order from ACME to strap on his heels the better to leap onto a cliff to catch Roadrunner. There were springs, coils, whatever, in the heel of the shoe.

My first inclination was to point and laugh. (Large and spacious building, anyone?) After all, we were in the "909" where the dirt people hang out, so what to expect but bedsprings screwed into the bottom of one's shoes?

But then I started thinking about how very comfortable those shoes probably were, especially for someone like me who experiences recurring chronic tendonitis and plantar fasciitis. I put aside my initial negative thoughts and asked her where she got them. She proudly lifted her pants leg so I could see the logo on them -- Z-Coil -- and told me to go online to get more information. She assured me they were, indeed, very comfortable, and didn't at all seem to mind the fact that she looked like a cartoon character.

I went to the nearest Z-Coil retailer yesterday (the only one in LA County), just to try a pair on. I immediately realized why the 909 lady didn't mind any potential mockery. These things are great. I mean, really. It's like, well, walking on springs, really. All the energy you put into walking is immediately replenished to the foot and leg through this amazing spring. (By the way, I found out that the first prototype by the inventor involved him going to a butcher with his old pair of Nikes to have the heel part of the sole sawed in half, then screwing a spring into the heel. Not so far off from what the initial reaction is.)

Long story a little longer, and not to bore you with my final decision, I got a pair. It's a costly pair, but well worth it. Yes, I'll be mocked, but I won't care. I'll just order some dynamite from ACME to go with my cartoon-y shoes to deal with any pointers and laughers. That should take care of it.

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