Friday, April 24, 2009

23 Book Signing/Documentary Screening Re-Cap and Photos

Last night at the Spring4th Center in downtown Atlanta author and friend A.R. Shaw debuted his book/documentary project 23: The Street History of A Shoe. For damn near the whole time I've known Amir he's either been talking about or working on this project and it was great to see it come to life. It was even more exciting to see the amount of support Amir got last night.

See, one thing about some Atlanta folks, they're not going to come out when its raining outside. Unless of course its Puff Daddy or somebody. Me and the homie Bem Joiner were talking about that and he brought up a Marc Ecko event he went to a couple years ago where Marc pretty much called Atlanta lame for not trooping in the rain to make it out to events. He paraphrased him as saying "ya'll are like L.A., thought ya'll was different" and going on to say how New Yorkers, Chicagoans, etc go out in harsh weather willingly, if not for the event, at least to show off their new boots, rain jackets, coats, etc.

I tend to agree somewhat, and I say somewhat because hell, I don't hang around too many cats that think they're too cute to go out in the rain. But in my city's defense, while I do think there are too many "cute" people walking around, I have to say, coming out in bad weather in Atlanta is a life or death decision most times because it is well documented that we lose are damn minds when any kind of precipitation falls out of the sky.

That said, I was very happy to see that the rain didn't stop people from coming out and supporting Amir. They practically packed the place out. Plus, if you know any sneaker heads, you know that if they are determined to make it to anything sneaker related, they are getting there hell or highwater. If any chairs empty, it was only because people were standing by the bar (none of the drinks were over $6, and we're talking the good stuff too). DJ Princess Cut did her thing as well, spinning some jams as well as a gang of Jordan related songs, I actually forgot how often folks rap about their Jordans.

To bring you up to speed, 23 is both a novel and a documentary. The novel revolves around Minus Hall, a kid from the South Side of Chicago who, like so many of us when we were younger, wants a pair of J's bad as hell. After scraping up the money to get some he finds that the trouble that comes with owning a pair is not worth the lofty price tag. I know how the story goes and ends, but that's all I'm telling the book, its a good read.

As for the documentary, Amir goes around the country talking to rappers, comedians, models, sneaker heads and just regular people in general about the worldwide phenomenon that is the Air Jordan sneaker. It was pretty entertaining hearing the impact that these sneakers have had on people's lives. He talked to both females that say that a man in a pair of Jordan's is the sexiest thing go and to dudes who admit that they've gotten "attention" from the ladies based solely (pun intended, kinda) on them rocking some J's. He caught up with guys who camped out for day's outside of Walter's to get the last pair of Air Jordans (the 23's) and people like my man G-Roc of who broke down the history of the shoe.

Another thing I found interesting in the documentary was the way it tied in other cultural happenings into the sneakers popularity and showed how it became a status symbol of sort on the streets of America.

As I admitted last week. I never owned a pair of Jordan's in my life up until just last weekend. My parents refused to drop $100+ on them, plus I wasn't a Jordan fan like that anyway. Also, I've had friends get jumped and robbed for their J's and heard about other dudes dying over them. That didn't sound fun at all, so I graciously wore my Reebok classics.

But yeah, it was a great event and turnout, very proud of the homie Amir. Here are some pics from the event. Oh yeah, check out a Qik talk I had with Amir on my Qik page, as of now its still the last video up in my Qik corner on the top right corner of this page, so you can view it there as well.

Also, remember, visit to purchase the book/documentary. You can also read the first chapter for free there.

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