When I was 18 all I wanted was a pair of Doc Marten boots. This was the mid 1990s and grunge was the thing. I never liked Nirvana or Pearl Jam at the time, my band was Soundgarden. Superunknown was a very important album to me. I don’t know if it was as important to you.
So I asked my mum for the 150 clams to get the boots. I need them, I’d beg. They were an essential item to complete my makeshift uniform. Flannel was cheap, I could pay for that with the minimum wage I earned cleaning corporate carpets at the time. Shorts were cheap as well, as were socks. Boots were the high end item, and I didn’t have the scratch to fund those bad boys.
She wouldn’t give me the money, nor would dad, so I had to save for them myself and play the waiting game. They wanted to teach me the value of money and all that rubbish. I didn’t need a lesson, I just needed those damn boots. So I saved for a month and bought them. They looked like this:
And I thought I was THE SHIT in them. I was wrong of course, but at 18 you believe you’re king of the universe and infallible, and I must admit I miss that reckless abandon. They weren’t even that comfortable – not an indictment on the good people of Doc Marten, I think I went a size or two above my usual – but boy did I feel good wearing them. I felt at least 10% more attractive to the opposite sex, and that extra confidence can make all the difference in the dog-eat-dog world of teenage courtship.
They took fifteen minutes to get on and pull off, which when engaging in potential sexual congress proved challenging, but I looked cool and that was currency in 1995.
Nowadays, I wear Hush Puppies. They look like this:
Superunknown still matters to me now as much as it did then…so what the fuck happened?