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Day 52 (February 21, 2014) – Lodi, New Jersey

What do sneakers hanging from a power line actually mean?  This is definitely a case for Myth Busters!

I know you’ve wondered your self….A) how the hell did the those “kicks” get up there?  B) Why are there tennis shoes on the power line? C) Who the hell tossed sneakers up there in the first place?  They seem to always magically appear overnight and I doubt you’ve ever witnessed the spectacle of show tossing (unless, you’ve performed the act yourself). You probably heard that the urban myths that they signal a spot where drugs are sold or even worse, gang territory.  Or perhaps you heard about bullies snatching sneakers off of their latest victims and tossing them up on the wires as a part of some practical joke.  And if you’ve had your passport stamped once or twice you quickly realize that this isn’t just an American thing. I’ve seen worn beat down kicks hanging from shoddy wires in Brazil, Cuba, Botswana, Amsterdam and a few other countries.  And I have to admit….. I took part in a ceremonial tossing of retired kicks a few years ago when I was in Egypt. For now, whatever the reason they are tossed, shoes hanging from power lines are just a part of the landscape.   And the debate about what it means will continue to go on for years to come.


2 thoughts on “SHOEFITI”

  1. I thought I once head they came from the murder victims…either a little remembrance from friends or maybe a sign from the murderers( gang related). May just be chinese whispers!!

    1. That’s definitely one of the reasons. Soldiers often throw boots of a fallen comrade as well. And in some countries they are tossed when a teenager loses their virginity. There are probably 100 reasons to toss a pair of sneakers up

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