Remembering And Connecting With Kobe Bryant Through His Signature Shoes
Kobe Bryant, Michael Jordan
NBAE via Getty Images)

What did Kobe Bryant mean to you? What’s your favorite highlight? Favorite memory?

Those are just a few of the questions being asked in the wake of his sudden death, the passing of his 13-year-old daughter Gianna Bryant and seven others who were also aboard the helicopter that tragically crashed in Calabasas.

There are an infinite number of answers and no measuring the full reach and impact Bryant had.

Vigils at Staples Center, the Mamba Sports Academy and Lakers practice facility, along with murals throughout the city, offer just a glimpse into how many lives he touched. Bryant’s relentless drive inspired thousands. Transitioning to fatherhood after retirement set another example to follow.

And for some, including this author, there was an added sense of connection through his signature sneaker line. On the surface, it seems trivial to place such significance on material items. But like most things involving Kobe, there’s nuance and depth.

I can’t remember what drew me to collecting basketball shoes, but before Bryant became a larger-than-life figure, my passion started with the Adidas KB8.

Adidas KB8 ad

I was nine years old when my parents bought me the black and white pair. With that came a euphoric feeling of having the same shoes as Kobe even though at that point, he’d yet to make his mark in the NBA, still only in his second season.

The new millennium brought forth The KOBE, which released in black, white, silver, yellow, ice blue, and mesh. I coveted every single one. Yes, wanting the same exact shoe, just in different colors, is probably as ridiculous as it sounds. Friends and family would tease me about it.

But I didn’t see different colors. It was remembering Kobe had on the white pair when he hit a game-winning jump shot over Jason Kidd in Game 2 of a 2000 playoff series against the Phoenix Suns.

He was wearing the black pair when he saved the Lakers after Shaquille O’Neal fouled out in Game 4 of the NBA Finals that same year.

The yellow pair was debuted in the 2001 NBA All-Star Game. And the mesh months later during the playoffs when Bryant and the Lakers went on to win their second consecutive championship.

Kobe  Bryant, 2001 NBA All-Star Game
Manny Millan-Sports Illustrated

The association between shoes and highlights went into overdrive after Kobe made the jump to Nike. His shoes often were the most technologically advanced and heralded pair available.

It was another example of what personified Bryant: always innovating.

But more importantly, the moments and memories continued.

Ask any collector and he’ll easily describe to you in detail which pair Kobe had on when he torched the Toronto Raptors for 81 points. Or when he drilled a buzzer-beater against the Suns in the 2006 playoffs.

I can even tell you which pair he had on when draining a shot at the buzzer against the Milwaukee Bucks in December 2009 and when Bryant again unleashed on the Raptors, this time with a wild comeback in March 2013.

And there are countless other examples.

Bryant’s first MVP Award was commemorated by Nike through a limited release of his third signature shoe with the brand. It marked the first time I lined up by myself hours before a store opened (I’d previously only done so as a teenager with a parent).

Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

Little did I know it was a sign of things to come. Bryant revolutionized the sneaker market with the Nike Zoom Kobe 4. With that came more releases. More lining up. More memories.

Arguably his first signature moment in the model came with scoring 61 points at Madison Square Garden. The black/del sol colorway Bryant wore that night had been a general release and was still easily available — until that memorable game.

I took that for granted, underestimated the emotional response to his achievement, and failed to circle back around to purchasing that pair. So I live vicariously through those who do have them and find joy in watching highlights from that game.

As Nike continued to release new iterations of the Kobe 4 on what felt like a weekly basis, there were more lines, more hoping my size would still be available by the time I reached the register.

Sure, waking up at 4 or 5 a.m. was ridiculous. But I wanted the shoes. Needed the shoes.

I was lucky enough my now-wife joined me on most early-morning journeys even though she never wanted a pair for herself. In some cases, shoes were released via raffle and having another person by my side was all the more valuable.

But while I see a Kobe highlight or accomplishment in a specific shoe, she recalls the countless hours lined up in front of a Niketown or House of Hoops and what our day together entailed.

Every so often, we look back on those experiences and laugh, fully aware of how mad it was Kobe regularly had us driving into L.A. before sunrise.

Words will never truly describe the impact he had. Kobe’s connection with each individual was so personal and unique.

Decades ago, Jordan Brand had a commercial that asked, “Is it the shoes?” that were behind Michael Jordan’s greatness. The answer, of course, was no.

And the same applies to my collection of Kobes. It’s not the shoes. It’s the memories.

online dating services Works

You hear it every. There are a lot more people out there who have found love online. I am not taken aback! From my encounter, Online dating is far more easy and better then offline dating.

Just a few of in years past, I was single and really lonely. I was working hard. Like most people I seemed to be spending more time at work then in my own home and my social life had gone completely by the way side. absolutely certain, I was a single Mom who had to dedicate a lot of non work time to my daughter, But even that has been sparse. My non parent friends found themselves having the same problem a lot of the time.

I found myself browsing through the chat rooms online during the evening in search of new friends or just someone else to talk to. quite often, I couldn’t get a word in edge wise or found myself disgusted at some of the things which people would say. I discussed trying an online dating service, But was hesitant due to weather change stigma that it is “Just for the urgent,

to be honest, If that is true, that time call me Ms. Desperate because I finally gave in to the urge and decided to take a peek at what online dating site was all about. i quickly (At least as soon as an old dial up connection and 24K modem can get) Discovered I had been really missing out and wasting my time trying to do this through regular chat rooms.

earlier, I didn’t know much about the. in truth, organization was pretty new to most people (This was prior to the millenium when I began my journey). My Dad had passed down a computer to my daughter and myself and I found myself intrigued by search engines such as.

I was amazed at the vast numbers of members already there. nevertheless, chances in women’s favor. There are many more men in online online dating services then women. a myriad of people are already working on their search that I had been putting off. Already finding friendships and love while I had been being left behind. favourable, I tried dating the particular offline ways. I went out with girls when I could and tried to meet men in bars or at my cousin’s gigs. Men rarely seemed to approach and soon after did, They always seemed fascinated by only one thing (And it wasn’t knowing my name). Things seemed dissimilar online

In traditionally dating, I found that relations often turned to the physical before they had built a strong emotional base. You are drawn to someone offline because you find them attractive or even let lust get in the way. on the, I was able to get to know a little about a person before I ever even had to be talking to them. I knew their pursuits, What kinds of relationships they were seeking, if they had kids or even wanted them, And even most of the time what they looked like if they had posted a photo. certainly, there’s always the chance that a person has posted a fake or old photo and have written lies about themselves. however, You find that offline with individuals too. If someone will almost certainly misrepresent themselves online, they definitely will offline. I did find that I never seemed to run across anyone who had totally misrepresented themselves or their appearance. Being online gives you feeling of freedom. Freedom from being made fun of and rejection. argument if someone has come across your personal ad and just chose to not respond. nevertheless, Who cares for you! It is not like going up to someone retail and getting shot down so I believe most people tend to be pretty honest.

After I wrote emails to some top people whose personal ads intrigued me, I to be able to post my own. my dear God! the next day my email box was full of responses. I couldn’t even maintain them all. I had to get a system to weed out some of the less magnetic people. if they wrote a form, Not specific note, Or wrote just about anything lewd, I would just delete it. Then I could focus on those which seemed to write more from their heart. I spent many a night writing emails and replying to emails from remarkable people. Some I would eventually drop off the list, And some I would eventually exchange mobile phone with. As a woman and particularly as a single mom, I decided that going for my pager number (Eventually my cell phone when I got one) Was better then giving them my number.

I would talk on the phone with these potential dates for hours and hours. We would take so much time understanding each other that when it came time to meet face to face, The clumsiness that is there in offline dating, appeared to be to non existent. The only anxiety I would have was get the job done chemistry we had over the phone and computer would be combined with a physical chemistry once we met.

obtain, I went on about 8 first dates with men I had met online before the one with my better half. A couple of them was second dates and fizzled, And one lasted two months until we decided we made better friends then [url=]moldova girls[/url] lovers. the majority of men were terrific.

I had sworn off dating in general for a while and had taken great ads offline. one day, I found myself bored during some down time at work and just for fun decided to browse in which you ads again. One person I found was the man I had had every thing has become with in the past so I wrote to him under a fake name to play with him a bit. around the other hand, I wasn’t able to keep up the prank, So however called him to tell him it was me (I foul odor at lying). Then i recently found a young man with the warmest and most genuine smile I had ever seen.

His profile joked about my old favorite TV show so I knew we had something in keeping. I laughed out loud while reading his profile and found my fingers were typing a message to him before it even registered in my brain. We wrote backwards and forwards to each other for a while, But lost touch for a bit just as much as 9 11.

In January of the next year, He wrote an email out of the blue right after I had decided to swear off of dating for a while (losing a lot of offline luck). We started talking again gradually moved our communication to the phone. His voice warmed me throughout and I would find myself being soothed after a stressful day at work just by the sound of his voice. We shared stories about our when we are children, Our activities, And our people and friends. We you spend hours (particularly [url=]beautiful moldova[/url] 80) On the phone before the day we finally met face to face.

Anxiety gripped me as the reality that this man that I had fallen in love with through the computer and over the phone might not click with me in person. We had already built such a foundation for a great courting and I didn’t want to see it go away. You just cannot control chemistry! about the other hand, If it was going to go forward the meeting had to happen and I just went in with the attitude of “If we don’t click romantically, At least i’ve got a new friend,

The evening of our date came and seeing stars buzzed through my stomach as he stood and approached me when I got to the restaurant where we were meeting. readily, I found I had nothing to think about. Our conversation flowed smoothly without any of the awkward silences that occur in most first dates from offline opening paragraphs. we had drinks, dinner, And small talk for about 1 hours. Then we went around to a movie, Which I normally don’t suggest on a first date but we had already done so much talking and taken so much time getting to know each other that it worked out fine.

When the date was over he walked me to my car and hugged me goodbye leaving me with the fear of our next date and possible first kiss.

the competition between us is history. online dating service brought him to me. I conceivably never would have met him otherwise. Taking all the time we did to get to know each other allowed us to build a strong foundation of friendship to build a love courting on. I had always dreamed I would marry a man who would be my mate, And i did so.

this time, I find that I meet people continuously who found their husbands/wives/boyfriends/girlfriends online. It seems to be becoming the most famous way to meet new people. the probabilities are endless online. will not be any borders or miles keeping you from meeting interesting, unimaginable people. You can choose how close or how far you want your new friends/lovers to be. The door is opened for you to meet which you never would have in another way. You can analyze them (If you take time) At a deeper level before you meet in the flesh. That way if you are drawn physically together, There has already been something there to build upon. You can hurry, Set your trusty pace, And get to know anyone inside of your own home. You don’t even have to get dressed up or you should get some make up to have an “web date, needs less effort, Less time out and about, And delivers more options then offline dating. then, I am a definite believer and a exuberant flag waver. I have encouraged my close friends, My sibling, And any other single persons I know to jump on this ever growing bandwagon. Now I encourage you to try it out.

  • Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published.