Nike made a light blue athletic shoe with its signature swoosh in white in about 1980. The toe was covered with light blue suede, and Nike named this style Oceania.
I coveted those shoes in seventh grade when shoes and jeans determined one’s place in the junior high popularity pecking order. I didn’t need them for athletics (and, in fact, I avoided activities that encouraged perspiration), but they looked mighty sharp with my Lee jeans.
One weekend not long after I got them (did I save up my babysitting earnings or did I wear down my parents with my constant whining?), my family went camping, maybe at Big Pine Lake. The campground offered hand-dipped ice cream in the camp store that was a converted big, red barn.
I remember savoring a cone of blueberry cheesecake ice cream outside that store. Extra creamy cream cheese chunks and pieces of graham cracker crust were woven together with blueberry ripple.
It was probably hot outside, and I remember that ice cream as some of the best I’ve ever eaten.
I found some blueberry cheesecake ice cream at a parlour today, and I had high hopes for it, but there was no graham cracker chunks.
At some point back in the ’80s, I ripped the suede toe of one my treasured light blue Nike shoes. Probably not during an athletic endeavor.
There was no sewing it back to new. The shoes were ruined. The only way to fix the tear and prevent my toe from sticking out was to glue it with some sort of globby goo that dried sort of clear.
It was an imperfect solution that bummed me out every time I looked down.
For as long as I owned those trend-forward shoes, the toe looked like it had a big, melted drip of Modge-Podge that looked eerily similar to that yummy blueberry cheesecake ice cream.