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Author Topic: Bystander Comments on Your VFFs and Barefooting  (Read 112998 times)
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beachbum1701
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« Reply #780 on: April 02, 2012, 11:13:42 AM »

 Shocked

Oh good golly, Miss Molly. Where to begin! I've been wearing "dem damn toe shoes" since 2008, and have been exclusively wearing them since retiring from the Army in February. (Thus far, the Army is the only branch of the US military that has gone to the extreme of actually making a regulation banning freaky-deaky footwear with individual toe pockets during 'organized' physical fitness training, while every other service has either shrugged and OK'd them or gone the opposite direction and made a reg that OK's them... Oy.)

Speaking of the Army, let's start there:

In 2010 I had the chance to watch (as best I can remember the exchange) the following scene during PT one morning on Ft Bliss along a run route. This was between a very crusty Sergeant Major and a fellow E6/Staff Sergeant who I had seen around but didn't know personally. This was well before the Army reg officially banning toe shoes came out:

E6 running past SM: Morning, Sergeant Major.

SM: (grunt)

SM sees toe shoes, whips head around, stops dead.

SM: Hey, troop!

E6 stops and turns to SM, immediately going to Parade Rest: Sergeant Major.

SM, glaring at the black KSOs the E6 is wearing: The hell are you wearing?

(Long story short, E6 gives a Cliff's Notes version of VFFs and his KSO, citing what they have done to relieve his shin splints and their growing popularity.)

SM: I don't gove a good goddamn about yer medical problem! They're f***ing slippers! Get your goddamn PT shoes!

E6: I was told by my company commander, who also wears these, it was okay as there is no regulation against them.

SM: And I'm telling you I don't want to see troops wearing slippers at gaddamn PT! You're a goddamn staff sergeant and you are setting a goddamn poor example for your troops to follow... (Insert several minutes of gratuitous brow beating emphasized with a lot of 'goddamns.')

E6: With all due respect, Sergeant Major, you are not in my chain-of-command, and my company commander has been granted approval to wear his by our battalion commander.

SM, huffing: You gonna tell me how it is? You are the most unprofessional non-commissioned officer I have ever seen. I'll have you and your slippers on the carpet* and busted, you goddamn sh*tbag!

*On the carpet: calling someone 'on the carpet' means to stand before a commanding officer, usually for disciplinary action, as, in the olden days, only officers had carpet in their offices.

E6, retaining military bearing but not backing down: Sergeant Major, these are not slippers. They are running shoes. They allow me to run naturally and without pain, unlike the heavy running shoes the Army has forced me to wear my whole career which almost crippled me. Almost every infantry soldier has some problem with ankles, feet and knees, and it's your kind of unprofessional ignorance that will continue breaking good soldiers off.

By now there were a lot of soldiers milling about trying not to appear engrossed in their exchange but obviously enjoying a staff sergeant hold his ground against this SM.

SM, shaking with anger: (like Clint Eastwood) Moove the f*ck out, troop! I'll have your ass!

With that he turned and jogged off. The E6 stood and watched him go, pointing to the SM's NEON GREEN AIR JORDAN BASKETBALL SHOES HE WAS WEARING WITH A GRAY ARMY PT SHIRT AND BLACK ARMY PT SHORTS making sure all the soldiers with sight noticed as well. There were many chuckles in the SM's wake.



And one I get asked alot as I wear mine (among my friends, I am known as the Imelda Marcos of VFFs; if you don't know who that is, you are to young to remember. Google her...)

Uninformed Heel Striker: (points to my toe shoes) Do those work?

Me: (with incredulous stare) As a renewable energy source...? As...food...?

(I usually have to bite my tongue not to add: "Here's yer sign!")
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« Reply #780 on: April 02, 2012, 11:13:42 AM »

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Horse Rider
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« Reply #781 on: April 02, 2012, 07:02:38 PM »

Really cool story!
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Treksport Pink
Bikila Silver/Verde,LS Purple
Flow Black
Sprint Black,Slate/Palmx2,Fuschia/Grey,Blue/Aqua
Classic Stormy Sea,Chili/Peach,Grey/Orange,Mauvex2,Lilac,Khaki/Sand,Suomy,Yellow/Grey,Sand/Dusty Blue,SW Charcoal
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« Reply #782 on: April 02, 2012, 08:17:48 PM »

Gotta love when a crusty old sergeant major rips on you about footwear when he's wearing big fluorescent nikes. I'm not sure about US army policy but bright or fluorescent running shoes are against dress policy for PT in the CF at least.

Doesn't it feel good to stand your ground when you know you're right? Good stuff!
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dirkverelst
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« Reply #783 on: April 03, 2012, 05:41:21 AM »

funny story, although it beats me how people would chose a career in circumstances where you have to take such situations
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« Reply #783 on: April 03, 2012, 05:41:21 AM »

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PB Junkie
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« Reply #784 on: April 15, 2012, 12:24:58 PM »

Yesterday at a 5k -
Lady - (pointing at my grape Bikilas LS) how do you like those, are they really THAT comfortable?
Me - yes, they're all I wear to run in.
Lady - do they have enough support?
Me - they don't have any support, that's the point.

I went on to explain transitioning into them and how your feet and legs get stronger so you don't need support, etc.

The neat part is that she was actually interested and we had an intelligent conversation about VFFs.
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VFFs: KSO W40, Treksport W40, Bikila W40, Jaya LR W41, Komodosport LS W40, KSO Trek W40, Spyridon LS W40, Bikila LS W40
Other:Merrell Trail Glove M 7.5, Merrell Sonic Glove M 7.5, VB Neo W41, VB Off Road Hi W41, Merrell Delight W9, VB Breatho Trail W40, Runamoc Dash U9, Merrell Road Glove M7.5
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« Reply #785 on: April 15, 2012, 05:17:25 PM »

Yesterday I ran in my first race... EVER!!! A 5K to support Hospice.  I was wearing my trusty KSO's and my daughter her Bikilas.  We were standing around waiting for the race to start when all of a sudden the husband of the Hospice coordinator came running up to us.  We know him and his wife very well and he said, "Katy said those shoes really 'creep her out' and to get a picture of them!" So he popped out his camera and snapped a photo which went on the Hospice web site.  I saw about six others wearing toe shoes of one form or another.  Here's the pic he took...

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Sablewings
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« Reply #786 on: April 15, 2012, 06:37:43 PM »

Quote
Katy said those shoes really 'creep her out' and to get a picture of them!

It's so sad that a shoe actually shaped like our feet should be seen as creepy. Especially as gloves on hands are just fine...
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Guy on a busy Tube Train staring at my VFF's:   "You wearing those things down here, eh... [shakes head]  Don't you know this is a place of tranquility?"

~~VFF Speeds White~~VFF Speeds Black~~Vivobarefoot Lucy Black and Blue/Grey~~Vivobarefoot Aqua Lites Red~~Vivobarefoot Neo Trail Black~~
toh-shu
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« Reply #787 on: April 15, 2012, 07:05:51 PM »

Quote
Katy said those shoes really 'creep her out' and to get a picture of them!

It's so sad that a shoe actually shaped like our feet should be seen as creepy. Especially as gloves on hands are just fine...
i dont get it at all either. I think they look really freakin cool to be honest. i have a couple friends that all they see is that the shoes look different so they instantly hate them. i try figuring out why they think they are so ugly but it seems like nobody really has an argument for it other than "each toe is separate, so it looks hideous". when i ask why its so bad,  people just say i dunno, they just are. one of my friends tried comparing them to toe socks...toe socks and vibrams are actually really different in regards to looks. toe shoes are actually shoes, with soles, and actually have a defined shape, with different styles and coordinated colors. i guess it just takes time for people who dont like them to adjust and get used them after seeing them for a while.

cool pic btw Shiraz. gratz on your first 5k! ill get there fairly soon i hope.
« Last Edit: April 15, 2012, 07:30:07 PM by toh-shu » Logged

My VFFs: Black/Grey TrekSports (Torn and fixed sort of.  Sad), Grey/palm KSOs, White/Grey/Red Bikilas, Brown/Black Spyridon LS, White/Black Speeds

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« Reply #788 on: April 17, 2012, 07:31:09 AM »

On a fun run recently with a section along the beach - guy at the finish says "I knew somebody was wearing those things - I could see your footprints in the sand"
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« Reply #789 on: April 18, 2012, 01:04:21 AM »

I was in the shoe store yesterday afternoon trying on some KomodoSport LS's, and a woman asked me if I had any other pairs. I told her no, that these would be my first pair, and she said she had a pair of Bikilas at home. I didn't end up buying the Komodo LS's though, because they only had blue and I wanted green. I'm picking up a pair of green ones later today. Smiley
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"...a good and wholesome thing is a little harmless fun in this world; it tones a body up and keeps him human and prevents him from souring." - Mark Twain
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« Reply #790 on: April 24, 2012, 03:09:11 PM »

Wearing my black/gray/green Komodosport LS' to work for the first time,I passed a lady in the hall.Looked down and she had on a pair of Bikilas.(I pointed out my Komodosports,and we both laughed..as neither of us noticed each other's shoes at first.) Really fun moment.
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« Reply #791 on: April 26, 2012, 08:01:34 AM »

One female coworker: "And your wife lets you get out of your home with those shoes?" ( I was wearing my yellow komodosport)

Me: "She haves 3 pairs!"

 Cool
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CincoDeos
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Vibram FiveFingers: --Sprints, TrekSport (x2), KMDSport LS, Trek LS, KMDSport(x2), Spyridon LS, Speeds, KSO (x2), Classics, KSO Treks (x4), Bikila, Treksport Sandals
Vivobarefoot: Ra (x5), Evo, Gobi, Hybrid, Jay
Lems; NB Minimus; Tune ; Altra Superior, Provission
Mr. Leigh
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« Reply #792 on: May 17, 2012, 10:57:15 AM »

After wearing my Navy/Aqua/Camo Classics for four consecutive days without a single comment, and they are a little flashy  Shocked with the Aqua between the toes and the Camo soles, I wore my Speeds yesterday.  Black and white Speeds to be exact.  I stopped at a gas station on my way home from work and fueled up.  Since I had a seven cent off per gallon coupon to use, I had to go inside to pay.  The cashier looked down at my feet and said "What are those, shoes?".  I responded "Yeah, shoes." trying hard not to sound too annoyed.  She asked me the usual questions like are they comfortable and such.  She then commenced to making a big scene about how awesome they were.  I can only assume it was because I modified them to have gray laces.  Grin LOL.  http://birthdayshoes.com/forum/birthdayshoes-com-general-discussion/men%27s-speeds-lace-color/  The other cashier then began telling her that her cousin had a pair too and that they were like $100.  She said she wanted to get a pair.  I think she was hooked.  If I see her in the future sporting a pair, I will be posting it in the converts thread.   Wink

Later that same evening, my wife drops me off at the mall to run in and get some hand soap.  With three kids three years old and under we tend to take turns going into stores whenever possible to avoid traipsing the whole family through the stores in our limousine-like stroller.  Went to Bath and Body works because my wife had a coupon.  A worker there approached me about my Speeds.  Same old song and dance and line of questioning.  The other cashier then began touting that she new someone that used them for high school track.  He ran sprints in them.  She tried to act as though she was all knowledgeable about them.  She said they were great for short distances, but you could never run a Marathon in them.  I just laughed.  I did not bother correcting her,  Lips sealed not worth my time and my family was waiting. 

I find it funny that a lot of people boast about the Speeds being the most inconspicuous of the VFF product line, yet they are the pair that I get accosted the most about.

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Step with care and great tact and remember that Life's a Great Balancing Act.
Just never forget to be dexterous and deft. 
And never mix up your right foot and your left.

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« Reply #793 on: May 17, 2012, 02:29:39 PM »

Okay, so I got it again today.  Today I am wearing MN Golden Gopher apparel with my Navy/Gray/Yellow Classics.  I was running errands on my lunch break and stopped at the same gas station to grab a sandwich.  The manager of the store calls out to me and says "Hey, are those comfortable?".  I refrained from saying what I wanted to say and simply answered "Yes, very.".  She then asks, "Who makes those, Nike?".  I said "NO, they are Vibrams.  They are called Five Fingers.".  She says "I know that, my son has gone through two pair already.  He is in the service in Afghanistan and it is all he wears for running."  She then commenced to saying "I don't see how those could be comfortable, since there is nothing too them.".  Conversation over.  I bought my sandwich and was on my merry way.  I think it is best if I avoid that local hot spot for a few days, or else I need to start carrying my ambassador cards around with me. 
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So be sure when you step.
Step with care and great tact and remember that Life's a Great Balancing Act.
Just never forget to be dexterous and deft. 
And never mix up your right foot and your left.

Oh, the Places You'll Go! by Dr. Suess
Horse Rider
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« Reply #794 on: May 17, 2012, 03:24:41 PM »

My neighbour saw me leave for a run Tuesday with my Vff's and she was telling me that she saw them in a store and asked the clerk about them. He told her "You know mam, you can't run more then 10 minutes in these..." I explained that he was wrong and why, but then I understood why there are so few Fivefingers in Montreal...
« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 02:54:09 PM by Horse Rider » Logged

Treksport Pink
Bikila Silver/Verde,LS Purple
Flow Black
Sprint Black,Slate/Palmx2,Fuschia/Grey,Blue/Aqua
Classic Stormy Sea,Chili/Peach,Grey/Orange,Mauvex2,Lilac,Khaki/Sand,Suomy,Yellow/Grey,Sand/Dusty Blue,SW Charcoal
Alitza Grey/Rose
Stem,Lems,EvoII,Off Rd Hi,Boxing Boot,Lucy Lite,Konvinesx2
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