Clogs are not for the faint of heart. As much as they are fun to look at, we don’t recommend you try wearing them for a full day. Your feet will not be grateful. (See #8 for a more comfy version of Clogs.)
- Air Jordans
He may not be standing on any feet in the trademark “jumpman” logo, but his epic jump, just like the shoes, become an instant classic. The first pair of Air Jordans were produced exclusively for Michael Jordan in 1984. A few months later they were introduced to the public market. Since then, the brand became a basketball staple with more than 30 different models. Today, the shoe is not only considered a basketball shoe, but it’s also a popular footwear option for daily use.
Do Heeleys remind you of your childhood? They probably do. Every kid wanted a pair, despite them being banned in schools, malls and arenas. If your parents ignored all the warnings about them and still bought you a pair, I hope your wristbones and tailbone are intact.
- Converse All Stars
This one is an all time hit! If you don’t currently own a pair, you probably did at one time (they even make baby converse!). It’s hard to believe that this basic sneaker started it’s big career as a basketball shoe in 1917 – introducing rubber-soles to courts across the United States. Today they sell ~ 270,000 pairs every day!
Love’em or hate’em, they have proved they are here to stay. UGG, an Australian company managed to create a warm, chunky boot made of sheepskin that won’t only keep your feet nice and cozy throughout the Canadian winter, but will help you make a fashion statement. In 2000, Oprah declared them her favourite things and they exploded in popularity, and 18 years later they continue to top the winter footwear charts.
Crocs, the comfortable (ugly) version of Clogs, released their first foamy model of their clogs in 2002. Since then, the company, which uses a cute crocodile as their mascot, has sold over 300 million pairs of clogs, sandals, heels, sneakers and a variety of other different styles. Fun fact: Crocs are a favorite shoe choice amongst doctors and chefs. They even created a special design for nurses.
Did you get your first donation yet? If you didn’t hurry up to get your own pair on On One Foot slides.
The true American Dream of shoes! Originally produced in Germany as an orthopedic shoe, it experienced an awakening during the 60s and quickly became popular with “hippies” on the West Coast. Since then, Birkenstocks have worked their way into the mainstream, and are favoured by those who value comfortable footwear – even Heidi Klum wears them! Thank you Germany!
Last month Hillel Ontario heard from Annamie Paul, leader of the Green Party of Canada. After winning the leadership race back in October of 2020, Annamie became the first Black person and first Jewish woman to lead a federal Canadian political party. Since then, she has been speaking to Canadians all across the country, spreading messages of hope and inspiration, during a time where these moments are a rarity. No matter the political orientation of the Zoom attendees of this fireside chat, everyone walked away with a few life lessons up their sleeve.
Here are some of my biggest takeaways. First, Annamie spoke about following your passion, a message that I know many students needed to hear. When I graduated from grade 12, I was constantly asked where I saw myself in five years, ten years, and sometimes even twenty years. Although I was asked with the best intentions, I’ve always felt overwhelming pressure to envision a clear career path. Annamie dispelled this myth by referencing the enjoyment associated with the process of discovering your passion rather than having a final goal in mind, and Annamie’s enthusiasm for human rights through a policy lens has shaped the course of her life. Second, Annamie spoke about the importance of speaking up in the face of injustice. Whether you consider yourself an advocate or not, Annamie highlighted the need to follow your moral compass, never remaining complicit. Following Annamie’s time as the leader of the Green Party, it is clear that she isn’t afraid to use her voice and position to shine light on racism, antisemitism, and sexism. These are two lessons I think everyone can learn from.
Annamie spoke about growing up in Toronto Centre (the riding where she will be running in the next federal election), her career as an international lawyer, and her decision to enter politics. As someone who doesn’t fit the mold of a traditional politician, Annamie referenced about the challenges that she’s faced as a Black, Jewish woman. Racism, antisemitism, and sexism were all constant throughout her leadership campaign, and her six months leading the Green Party.
Throughout Annamie’s talk, I learned about the importance of elevating voices that have previously gone unheard. In a predominantly white space, Hillel students and staff need to work hard to ensure that Jews of Colour feel welcomed.
After 45 minutes, the latter half of which consisted of an insightful Q&A, Annamie mentioned that she would love to be invited back to another Hillel Ontario fireside chat. For now, I’ll take Annamie’s lessons with me while looking forward to hearing about all of her accomplishments in a year from now.
- Skylar Banks, Guelph Hillel