There once was a time when specific footwear served a very specific purpose. Even as little as a few years back I lived in such a world where I thought snowboots existed only in realms deemed applicable to such conditions that would necessitate a thick fur boot, ostensibly places like Alaska, or Antarctica, you know, those artic temperate zones. Unfortunately, in my naivety, I learned that humanity doesn’t harbor the pragmatism I once thought it did.
I decided to dig back and find where the novel idea of a snow boot originated. I immediately found that the Inuits, in their ingenuety and craft, designed a caribu skin boot for hunting in the snow. The warm, thick fur, provided ample protection from the harsh elements. They called them Kamiks. Genius! Given the time period of the nomadic people, we can estimate that Kamiks could date back as far as 1000 years – possibly further. But that’s not what we’re interested in.
Like all things, it isn’t long before the Paris Hiltons, the Marlin Brandos and the Lisa Lopes get their hands on long-standing traditions that represent a culture of the past and utterly besmirch them. The Fashionistas in Hollywood swiftly and deftly carried out an atrocity on par with The Reign Of Terror when they unleashed the fashionable snow boot to hordes of young women ready to tarnish the dignity of the Inuits and the Yupiks with smiles on their faces.
It probably began with movie stars, but now you can’t walk down the street in August without seeing 5,10, maybe even 100 pairs of snowboots on woman aged 13-58.
Look at this photo I found of Shelley Duvall sporting a modern form of the Snow boot in the 1980 Stanley Kubrick movie The Shining. But I’m sure it reaches back farther than this. That is why I am calling on you, nation, to send me your sightings of snowboots in pop-culture pre 1980’s. We’re going to get to the bottom of this and see who is truly responsible for this ghastly and reprehensible act.