There are no excuses. I know I'm very bad but I can't seem to help it. And as much as I hate to use the term, I just may be obsessed. Even now I can see you strutting yourself down Locust Walk or dancing around college green, all shiny and new, careful not to get soiled. You're so damn pretty and versatile that I could just about take you anywhere, except maybe to Denim on Thursday nights, but nobody goes there anymore anyways. It's true; I'm a crazy kid for a new pair of kicks; an aficionado of the shoe originally intended for sport. That's right kids, I freaking love sneakers and I know you do to.

The fact is; sneakers are everywhere these days. Whether it's an old school pair of high tops or black and purple Air Jordan's, it's hard to avoid this freakishly hip trend that's been sweeping the globe for the past few years. Unfortunately, supply and demand is a bitch, and sneaker prices have been skyrocketing lately. Let's face it, Philadelphia isn't exactly a fashion haven for anyone with supreme taste and it can be quite a challenge to find something original without heading to the Internet, but we can't all live in Tokyo and computers give you cancer. So throw out your nasty Birkenstock's and dig out that pair of L.A. Lights you could never part with, because sneakers are back-in a big way.

Now, I know it's a jungle out there, but don't worry you won't have to face it alone. Here are a few tips from a Philly native, and a natural-born expert, to help you along the infinite quest for coolness.

1. Stick to the sales: Benjamin Lovell (18th between Walnut and Sansom) always has a good sale rack; Nordstrom Rack (Franklin Mills Mall) rent a car, it's worth it; Nocturnal (2nd and South) for the skater in you. Ubiq (15th and Walnut) great selection and random frequent sales -- be sure to ask the manager or befriend an employ for a sweet 20% discount.

2. Bright Colors: Don't be afraid to rock the florescent colors. A neon green swoosh or some hot pink stripes may just light up your life in ways you never thought possible.

3. Laces Matter: If you don't have enough cash for new sneaks, just purchase some fancy laces and pretend. Seriously though, laces are making a come back right along with sneakers so jump on the band-wagon before all the seats en.


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