The Dunk and Air Max are bothÂ Nike icons, but in my book the Cortez will always rule.Â The original first hit the pavement in 1972.Â I got my first in 1998 back when everyone was dressing down and donning sportsgear for all-night raves. It had a black nylon upper with an oversizedÂ white swoosh, and in 2000Â appeared in No Doubt’s vid for ‘Ex-Boyfriend’ on the feet of a pink-haired Gwen Stefani, who I was mad on at the time. It wasn’t just a shoe, it was a bunch of memories….
There were plenty more tribesÂ besides clubbers like me that haveÂ made the Cortez their own though. As the East Coast of the US was getting high on the Air Force 1 and its street basketball connections, over on the West Coast, SoCal kids were running around in the Cortez. Thanks toÂ its name (an American shoe with a Latin American name),Â and the fact that you could walk tremendous distances in it, the Latin youth of LA (who usually got around on foot or by bus) made the Cortez part of the LA hoods uniform.
Now theÂ Cortez is getting a remix. The new Spring/Summer 09 Flywire CortezÂ looks every inch the same but thanks to bang up-to-the-minute technologies like Flywire, an ultra strong, paper-thin series of cablesÂ interwoven into the upper,Â the 09 Cortez isÂ lighter, more comfortable and more flexible.Â In original leather and suede/nylon one piece-upper, it comes in a rage of colours. Woot!
At all Nike stores now and www.nike.com.