Monday’s Trip: The Vic by Airwalk

The best thing about writing on a regular basis is that eventually you get into a constant creative mode. But, if you don’t write down all the ideas they will fall off your radar. Last week before the Vans Pro Tec Pool Party a blip resurfaced on the editorial sweep and I’m finally getting to bring this one back. So pour yourself a cold drink because we’ll be here for a few minutes.

Flashback to the 80’s when skating was going through a second or third revival (I’ve lost count) all the pros were rocking Vans or Nike and in some cases … Airwalks. Shit, Tony Hawk rocked Airwalks so did (then super AM  and now the man with more balls than a batting cage) … Danny Way. The trouble was I couldn’t get them in my small upstate NY town. We ended up skating in Dunk highs and Chuck Taylors. But damn if Airwalks didn’t look cool.

We’d have layers of duct tape on our laces to protect them from disintegrating as we slid on the layers of Masonite that lined our ramps. Eventually somebody took notice and Airwalk dropped the Vic with the velcro lace saver. It look … weird. But, they got the job done of keeping your shoes in one piece longer. On one hand there was a certain pride in being grimey to the point your rector pads reeked and your shoes had enough shoe goo on them the rebuild ollie holes. The flips side was the Vics for some reason each guy that had them just…well they seemed to have it together. I’m not saying the shoe made them skate better. I don’t buy into that on any level. In my small town it just worked out that the right guys had them on their feet. 

Before you knew it the lace saver flap became omnipresent and began to infiltrate all of our skating circles. After the Bones brigade blasted through on a demo it all but sealed the deal. The Vic had become a standard of sorts. Slowly, Etnies came onto the scene and Vision faded away. Vans got bigger and I saw less and less Airwalks in shops.

Flash forward twenty plus years and I get an e-mail that Airwalk rolled out a limited edition version of the Velcro Vic. Of course my ears perked up and knew I had to tap out a quick note on the keyboard for South of the North. However, life happens and I ended up getting very busy. Last week in Los Angeles before heading down to the pool party we stopped in for a quick early morning session at Glendale. As we cruised in somebody was rolling out and sure enough…he had on a pair of the Vics. Either his were brand new or he’s taking it easy in his old age. Needless to say the shoe still looked rad.

The session that day was more fun than I can fully describe but the shoe sparked conversation with some old friends on how far skating has come from the past. Seeing the Ollie Airwalk character got us a little hyped. For a brief moment it was like I was 14 again and blastin” through the SUNY Binghamton Campus. Endless lines are still to be had there if you know where to look. Needless to say Airwalk is going to be rolling out more limited edition drops and I’m looking forward to seeing where we go next in this trip down memory lane.

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