Still Don’t Bet On Your Kicks In Las Vegas

My friend Briana recently completed graduate school at USC, so of course she had plans to have a weekend of festivities with her friends.

These festivities took place in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Days leading up to the trip, I learned that Sin City was expecting over 320,000 visitors this particular Memorial Day weekend. I didn’t quite know how to take that information at first because I thought it would be so much more than that. Regardless, I’ve been to the strip before, I know the lay of the land. For some reason, I think that it is a good idea to go without some beaters this time around. So, like any sneakerhead shouldn’t do, I instantly decide on the Iniki (yes, mine say INIKI on the shoe), and Tennis Hu- both OG colorways, mind you- without thinking about the repercussions of taking them to Las Vegas, namely the strip.

I also decided on those shoes because of the given agenda for the weekend. Friday night, the group will go to a party at 1Oak. I wasn’t going to make it in time to go, so I decide to make plans with a cousin that lives in that city. In the daytime on Saturday and Sunday, we will be attending pool parties, and in the night, we will be in nightclubs. Now, I was well aware that I wasn’t allowed to wear sneakers to the nighttime events, so I brought some Chelsea boots along. As for the pool parties, one may think to bring swim trunks, and some slippers of some sort, right? I did not. I decided to bring basketball shorts, and skip the slippers because I’ve never really been one to have my feet out. I usually always swim with basketball shorts on (as do a number of my counterparts), so I had figured it was fine. On top of that I didn’t see myself actually getting in the pool. which was also not uncommon, as plenty of people simply hang out by the pool during parties anyway. So, the daytime was covered in my opinion; basketball shorts and dope sneakers, soaking up the sun and music at the pool parties.

I pack it all up, and wait for the next day.

Day 1

I put my bag in my car in the early morning on Friday and go to work. I still have to make a living. I figured that since I was going to be at work all day and then on the road for a while after that, I should be comfortable. So I wear the Inikis, which are crazy soft and were a good choice. I made my living for the day, and took off for the city of lost wages. Still wearing the Inikis, my feet don’t start to hurt until I’m about an hour away from the strip. I have had these shoes on for 17 hours. 17. And for 16 of those 17, I was comfortable.

I get to Treasure Island, a pleasant hotel and casino, get to my room, switch out from the Inikis to the boots, and instantly dip back out to meet up with my cousin. The Tennis Hus sit. I’m with him for about 5 hours, and my feet hurt in like an hour. To be fair, my feet had already been hurting before I even met up with him, so the boots didn’t get a fair run. But, in retrospect, I didn’t have to switch out of my boots at all because my cousin had on Jordans the whole damn time. I could’ve at least been hurting on clouds instead of wood.

Day 2

The next morning, the whole gang is assembled. We talk, eat, have a good time, and get dressed for the day’s activities. I decide to put on my Nolan Ryan (Texas Rangers, of course) jersey, some terry shorts (to a pool party), and my Inikis. I check the ticket (that I paid good money for) beforehand for the dress code, and nothing on my person seems to be prohibited. Cool.

The reality was anything but. We get to the event, and there is a large banner detailing prohibited wear ad nauseam. This list was so specific, it even went as far as to say sneakers, and then explicitly Jordans. This list was bananas. So I instantly turn around, and head to the nearest store I could find to get some decent slippers. This endeavor takes nearly an hour, a lunch break, and some handful of walked miles along the strip due to back-and-forth. Simply for some slippers. All of this could’ve been averted had I thought to just bring my slippers in the first place. So, after all that, I finally get back to the pool party. Since I was pre-sale, I didn’t need to wait in line. How convenient. I get back to security, slippers on my feet, and he tells me that the shorts and jersey were no good, and thus my admission was no good. I somehow knew that, and yet I was disappointed. I let my friends know I’m not joining them until the evening. I then decide to go back to my room, switch into my Inikis, and explore places along the strip I didn’t see before. The Tennis Hus sit.

During this time, I come across a streetwear store called Urban Necessities which had just opened up the day prior. There was a lot of fanfare and buzz around the place, so I decided to check it out. I didn’t stay too long, but if you are in the Las Vegas area, that is a store I would definitely recommend for sought after kicks. The shelves were more than full of fire you’d normally only find on the likes of StockX and Goat, so give that store a peep if you’re in town.

Fast forward to the evening, and everyone’s all together again. As it turns out, had I stayed in line the first time, I could’ve gotten in! My friends came back with reports that there were plenty of people there with sneakers and/or jerseys on. As I figured. Homie just wanted to be a jackass. Regardless, we’re all dressed and ready to go enjoy the night at the club. As per the situation, I put back on the boots. The Tennis Hus still sit. But the night proved to be just as bunk as the day. When we get to the club, it turns out that guys had to pay for it. Everyone thought that it was free for everyone, and the plug to the guest list also said it was, but that did not turn out to be the case. I did not want to pay that crazy price, so I step. I go back to the hotel, switch back to the Inikis, and decide to go out and see what I can do. I go back out for a couple of hours, but I eventually come back and call it a night.

Day 3

I was not playing around today. I put on the slippers, swim trunks I end up buying in the morning, and a simple tank top I forgot I had packed. The Inikis and Tennis Hus stay. The pool party was fun, but that’s a story for another day. After the pool party, the group went to get sushi, but I go back to the hotel room to shower, and to get a chance to meet up with a friend that was also down there for the weekend.

I choose the Inikis, and head out to get a drink and catch up with a friend, before I have to come back in a couple of hours to get ready for the night time festivities, which actually was free for everyone. We get there around 10:30, end up leaving by 1, as we figured the guest wasn’t going to show up for a while still. We all head back to get some food because we were hungry, and shortly after I decide that it’s better to head back to Los Angeles sooner than later. Being Memorial Day Weekend, traffic was going to be ridiculous the next day. I change into a pair of my basketball shorts, a t-shirt, put on my Inikis, and I head out at 3 AM in the morning. The Tennis Hus never saw the light of day. Amazingly enough, the Inikis only incurred a light, minor mark the size of a popcorn kernel on the Boost. A simple wipe of a wet towel did the trick.

I get back to my place and fall asleep. When I wake up, I assess the weekend and decide that I still probably won’t take my hardest grails to Las Vegas. I spent a lot of time outside my sneakers, so there’s no sense in bringing the super heat that I know I’m not going to want to wear a whole lot even if I wasn’t going to dress code-enforced pool and night parties. In closing, I’ll reiterate the sentiment from my last Vegas outing:

It’s always cool to see dope kicks in dope places, but if you’re really concerned about the condition and the wear while you’ll be out there, keep your best in your closet, and take some easier pieces you wouldn’t mind getting a little dirty. You’re going to want to explore and do things in Las Vegas, as you should. Just don’t do them in your most precious sneakers.

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