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Get a hobby: How $300 shoes can save your life

By Kendall GibsonSpecial to the Chronicle

Last weekend, Hofstra University hosted the Street Heat Sole & Style Expo, a sneaker convention. Isn’t it strange, calling them “conventions” when the word also means the status quo? Conventions celebrate things that aren’t the status quo. And was it necessary for them to shoe in a pun? Eyelet you decide.

The convention would have passed unnoticed by me, had I not been stopped outside the Student Center by a man scalping size 12 Red October Air Yeezy’s. I asked him if he had anything costing less than the $300 he wanted. He said no.

My point about the expo is that while it may seem like an absurd obsession to spend hundreds on shoes, it is never a bad thing to celebrate something that you legitimately love.

Kindred spirit was palpable in the air that Saturday. Men and women came to Hofstra from all over Long Island, and their individual lusts for shoes were mixed. What a wonderful day for them it must have been. Instead of going to work or school, where people are connected only through happenstance, they came here, and were connected through soleful affinity.

The event was not only a refuge for sneaker enthusiasts; it also gave them an opportunity to meet people. Meeting people is the most beneficial thing to do in college, so take advantage of every opportunity that Hofstra offers.

You could meet your future employer at a random seminar, or fall in love at a residence hall meet-and-greet. Your biggest chances of meeting the right people, however, come from attending events that cater to your interests, since you will have commonalities with the attendees.

This all ties back to what I am saying about hobbies. Hobbies are strange, because on one hand they divide us, but on the other, they bring us together. Fitness junkies find few commonalities with heavy drinkers, for example. “Different strokes for different folks,” as they say, but man, when you find some folk with similar stroke, magic happens.

I am sure that you have an obsession, some idiosyncrasy, and your friends are always asking you why you bother funneling time and money into it. Do it. Hobbies are never ridiculous. You can have a hobby doing something ridiculous, but the hobby itself is not.

Exploring a hobby to its fullest is the best way to cultivate your self-identity, and that is what college is all about. Find something you’re passionate about. You will have the rest of your life to watch Netflix.


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