Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Adidas Nation

"Check it out," he said. "I stopped at the Adidas store in Leipzig and got all this stuff."

Three humongous Adidas vinyl duffel bags full of tagged Adidas merchandise, everything from shoes to gloves to knee-pads, were plunked down pell-mell. A cute pair of pristine white sneaks rolled out onto the floor. They would later be added to the Imelda Marcos memorial shoe collection at the door.

"I thought you were giving up Adidas?" I asked. If I had any feelings, I would have felt bitter and jealous. But I know he was just doing this in the spirit of sharing. I would want to share too. Playing dress-up is fun. But I couldn't help but feel the green-eyed monster rear its ugly head a tad. I hadn't bought new clothes in at least a year. Never mind the fact that he still hadn't made good on his offer to give me some of his cast-offs. After all, I'd harbored something of an Adidas fetish since the mid-90s, when Britpop was king in the US alternative scene, the whole cool Brittania thing cinched by Ewan McGregor's swaggering performance in Trainspotting. Oh well, I thought, at least of he buys more then chances are he'll need to make more room in his closet.

"No, man, this shit is Old Skool." He pulls out a jersey with a distressed look which could have been culled from the Munich 1971 fussball team. I can't help but think how fetching it would look on my frame, my shimmering personality offsetting the generic sexiness and clean lines of the label.

With the Blur/Oasis dichotomy a distant memory, since I moved to Germany last year, this interest has abated a bit, since Adidas accessories paired with a Keffiyeh and skinny jeans are pretty much the national uniform. Adidas is to Germany what Abercrombie and Fitch is to Middle America. Maybe it's a misplaced form of nationalism: after all, you can get Adidas stripes in the colors of the German flag.

Best intentions aside, my roommate has become a proponent of this collective fetishism, by dint of being a "victim" of corporate sponsorship. You see, he's a professional athlete, with Adidas as one of his sponsors. He just can't say no to a little swag bag. But his line of credit extends to other accounts as well.

"You know, I never wanted to be one of those people who showed off their gadgets. I really hate that. But check out this new IPhone..."

No comments: