The Misadventures of a Sneakerhead and His Convert Girlfriend

Aug 23, 2021 0 comments

I’ve been with my boyfriend, Roby, for a little over three years now. It seems like a long time, but we’ve been friends for far longer. November marks the 10th year since I first met him on the first day of our Math 17 retake in UP.

Through the years, we’ve bonded over shared favorites and interests. Wrestling. Eating. Westlife. Ice cream. But like any two people in any kind of relationship, we have interests that differ too. These were the ones I had a crash course in of some sort when I became his girlfriend. 

You see, my boyfriend is a sneakerhead. I’m not. Or wasn’t. 

The Newbie Sneakerhead and His Lost Girlfriend

I didn’t fully realize that Roby’s a sneakerhead until last year during the pandemic. In all fairness, he didn’t really fully embrace it until then either because, well, what else do you do when you’re stuck at home and you have all the time in the world to dwell in your interests?

We went from dropping by Nike and Adidas every now and then pre-pandemic to daily and almost hourly floods of photos of sneakers and “Baby, what do you think of this?” on repeat. 

I did (and still do) my best to listen with earnest interest. I didn’t want to be one of those girlfriends who nods at everything her boyfriend tells her but everything he says just enters one ear and sails out the other.  

I did my best to listen and understand but, my goodness, sometimes I was just so lost. He’d be patiently differentiating an Air Jordan 1 Royal Toe and an Air Jordan 1 Fragment but there I was, thinking they’re just one and the same. 

But I saw it made him happy to talk about shoes. There’s an added twinkle in his eyes when talks about them. So I let him be. 

The True Blue Sneakerhead and His Exasperated Girlfriend

After weeks of daily sneaker analysis and weighing the pros and cons of buying <insert whatever pair here>, Roby finally bought his first pair of Air Jordan 1s last September. I thought that now that he finally bought a pair, we could close this sneakerhead chapter and move on. 

I was wrong. 

By December, he had another pair of Air Jordan 1s and we were still talking about sneakers every single day. 

Remember, I wasn’t a sneakerhead at that time. Even after all the explaining, I still couldn’t tell what makes the Royal Toe different from a Fragment. Or why anyone would pay thousands of Pesos for a pair of Yeezys that looks like my lola’s metal ice shaver. You know... the one you scrape by hand against a block of ice when you’re making halo-halo the old school way.

At some point, I got tired. I got fed up hearing him talk about sneakers every day. I always wondered when was the last time we had a sneaker-free day. I was exasperated and because of that, I lost the will to be understanding. 

Because I was exasperated and was no longer understanding as a result, we unsurprisingly ended up bickering about sneakers a number of times. I’m not proud of those fights. Neither is he. We’d take them back if we could. 

But if there is one thing I learned from the bickering, it’s this: more than just sneakers making him happy, what made him happier was that he finally had someone to share it with. And that someone is me. 

It was when I realized that that I decided to just embrace it. He’s a sneakerhead through and through and it looks like it won’t change even when we’re old and wrinkly. It was up to me if it was going to be something that could make both of us smile or something we’d fight about. I chose the former. 

Roby had to make his choices too. He recognized that he talked about sneakers a tad bit too much and promised to lessen the sneaker talk.. On his own accord, he made an effort to talk about my interests more and even got into some of them.

The Kilig Sneakerhead and His Convert Girlfriend

Making all those adjustments for each other has made a difference and now… well, I own a pair of Air Jordan 1s myself. 

I surprised the pair of us when I decided to buy them. And I might’ve comically wailed my way from One Bonifacio High Street to Jordan Manila because I just decided to make a sudden purchase I normally wouldn’t make. But it’s hard to say no to a pair of Jordans that is less than Php 4,000. 

If you know Jordans well, you’d know they cost a lot more. Around 9k for a high-top Air Jordan 1. But, well, I’m a girl and I happen to fit in GS sizing. Smaller sizing, cheaper prices. 

Roby was more kilig than I was when I paid for the Jordans. 

If there are two things I want you to pick up from The Misadventures of the Sneakerhead and His Convert Girlfriend, here’s the first one: make an effort to be into the things your partner is into. Unless they’re bad things, of course. If they aren’t, who knows? What makes your partner happy might end up making you happy too. 

Second and certainly not the least, adjustments should come from both sides when there’s a conflict at times. When I made the decision to just embrace his sneakerhead side, he made the decision to embrace something I love in return. 

The result? He’s now a sneakerhead who writes articles about sneakers. And his sneakerhead convert girlfriend, who is a writer by profession, is very proud. 

Read Roby’s first ever article here: The Local Sneaker Culture As Told by a Newbie Sneakerhead

━━ Written By Bella Javier 
━━  Art By Metroscene Mag 

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