I have had a penchant for unusual footwear for many years although I have not succumbed to the compulsion to purchase any for a very long time. Chalk it up to growing up and having kids or blame it on my reserved nature that makes we like to blend into the woodwork. It was different years ago when I was in a rock band. It was easy to wear this uniform of ab normalcy. I remember when I picked up my girlfriend at the time, (who is now my wife), and her dad commenting on my "fruit boots." They were beautiful to me. Custom made leather Beatle boots colored red on one side and black on the other. Well, recently I stumbled upon a pair of boots that at once look both cool and hideous. A zipper snakes across the side like the Great Wall of China as a dividing line between black distressed leather and a gabardine looking gray fabric. To me, they cast a nice profile but the fabric throws them off kilter. I love and despise them at the same time.
They are manufactured by Robert Wayne, are called Republics and are advertised on ShoePad.com for $144. I did end up purchasing these rather strange looking shoes after all. Despite my reservations, the fact that they were marked down repeatedly until they bottomed out at $19 sealed the deal. They sat on the bottom shelf of a disheveled shoe department at Burlington Coat Factory and called out to me.