This blog has been a really useful tool over the past six years, and it has served all kinds of purposes, from therapeutic diary to creative outlet. Now and again, I have reviewed good products I’ve come across and the resulting output has been quite well received. I’m not one to spread bad reviews unless really incensed, and I usually just drop or ignore things that I don’t like.
A few years ago, I bought a pair of Chiruca boots with a novel fastening system like a doorknob at the top of the tongue. This knob ratchets fine wires to tighten or loosen the fit, and it was billed as a “futuristic” lacing “system”. Being a sucker, I bought a pair. For a few months they were the bee’s knees and I wrote a very favourable review of them which you can still find HERE. This review was picked up by a number of companies which sell these boots and, oddly enough, it has become one of the most popular articles I’ve ever written, attracting thousands of views in a year, often from overseas readers.
As it happens, if I had written the review a few weeks later it would have read quite differently. The wire fastenings which wind up the boots broke and proved to be utterly irreparable. I took them back to the dealer and they said that they couldn’t fix them. On passing the news back to Chiruca, they sent me a bizarre and practically functionless set of miniature alan keys with which I was supposed to fix the wires myself. In the event, these keys were so unhelpful that they may as well have originated in another dimension. Part of the problem was that as they are worn, the slots through which the wire is threaded become blocked with all kinds of mud and crap, and they are absurdly difficult to navigate or renew with the slightly frayed end of a cut wire. Even under laboratory conditions, I daresay it might be the work of several hours to restring the wires in these boots, but given that I was assured that they would never break in the first place, that fact was academic.
I ended up getting different boots (Black Islanders) about three years ago and have never looked back. I’m now on my second pair, and their simple, straightforward fastenings remind me every day why God invented laces.
So I hope that this quick rant sets the record straight about boots which I believe are essentially nothing more than a naff gimmick. Sorry to all readers for having taken so long to set the record straight, and sorry also to myself for having wasted money on them in the first place.