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Wednesday, August 29th, 2012 15:26

I got a pair of Merrel Waterpro Maipos way back in the day. While they were the most amazing shoes in the history of ever in terms of fit and foot comfort, they were the the worst ever in terms of durability; they started coming apart after I'd only worn them a couple of times. I kinda wonder if they were only intended for light/occasional use, like being worn while canoeing or some such? Anyway, ideally I think I'd like something similar except built to last. The breathe-y mesh sides were awesome for keeping my feet happy -- usually a full day wearing something like dress shoes is enough to make the footwear-interior-environment pretty swampy, and travel days where you're on your feet and in your shoes for like 18 hours at a go are even worse.

The runners I've been wearing since haven't really been cutting it for me in terms of fit, function, or fashion, and the latest pair is almost dead. So...time to muckle onto some new shoes. As per usual, the stores around here have little to nothing I'm interested in, and since I'm not making any shopping trips in the very near future, it's off to the internets we go. Here are a couple of candidates...

Que pensez-vous?

Wednesday, August 29th, 2012 21:17 (UTC)
I can personally attest to Keen's being fucking tough, but I don't know about those specific pairs. The Farmer--who is not kind to any of his tools because he expects them to also be functionally tough--has a pair of Keen sandals and a pair of enclosed Keens that he farms/works/builds in...both pairs still going strong.

I'm a fan of the New Balance Minimus line, but I'm also a barefoot runner forced into shoes by the man the health center where I can exercise for free.
Thursday, August 30th, 2012 12:08 (UTC)
Keens are tough, yo. A couple of the florists I used to work with wore them and had had them forever.
Thursday, August 30th, 2012 16:17 (UTC)
I admit I have a Pavlovian reaction whenever somebody mentions that they are thinking about Keens; said reaction is generally along the lines of KEENS KEENS KEENS MOTHEREFFING KEENS YESSS SHINY. *grin*

That being said, I'm not sure I can advise well on this particular range of shoes, simply because I don't have Keens in the sneakery range. I can wax rhapsodic about comfort, though, as every pair of Keens I've owned has been the most comfortable shoe ever, even after a full travel day or a day of just wandering around the city. The protective toebox is awesome and has prevented *so* many toe injuries for me. I would probably still be wearing the first pair of Keen sandals I bought back in '08 if I'd paid a little more attention to sole maintenance and brought 'em to a cobbler, but I am rough on my shoes and overpronate, so all those years of overpronation make the sole more trippable-in, and I had to replace them. But those babies made it through four years of near-daily wear from April-October (with occasional wear with socks on warm snowless days earlier in spring and later in fall) with zero maintenance from me.

As for the swampiness issue, I used to have similar problems, but since switching to wool/wool blend socks, I feel like that's alleviated a lot of the smell - for me, even more than trying to avoid less-breathable insoles/shoe interiors. Drawback: the socks are expensive, so mostly I wait until they're on sale at REI and buy them a pair at a time; even then, though, I'm paying $X for a pair of wool socks when I used to pay $X for a six-pack of cotton socks.

One other thing I do when I can't wear socks yet have to wear closed-toe shoes - I powder inside my shoes. I feel like my dad when I do it, because he always did that every morning, even when he wore socks! But I never saw my mom doing that, so I'd thought it was a gender-body thing for so long, and probably not a solution for me. Heh.