“Driving fast, drinking cheap beer and smashing windows isn’t rebellion. The best form of rebellion is individualism. Thinking for yourself.”
Martin Roach, Dr Martens History
We live within a system that awards conformity and penalizes individualism. We get on Facebook and Twitter each day, ranting about how “they” are screwing us over or how “we” have to rebel; terms suggesting conformity to the majority. The truth is that most of those rants are veiled attempts at getting more people to conform to a particular notion presented by the mouthpiece. True rebels think and do what they want without caring what others think. They don’t care about being “proper” or “polite” or wearing the right jeans or driving to the right church on Sunday. Individuals aren’t worried what purse they’re holding at the cocktail party or what the label says on their beer bottle. Conformists worry about what other people think while individualists think.
Rebels must conform to a certain degree or they’d end up in jail, dead, or typing manifestos in the wilds of Montana. Fringe conformity ensures a degree of self-preservation. In a twisted paradox, one of the most enduring representations of individualism comes from the commercial realm. Doc Martens: a big “FU” to the masses.
“Dr. Martens have always been different. No other brand has been mutated, customised, fucked up and freaked out like DM’s. Without asking or being able to stop it. It happened to them. They were just fascinated bystanders on a journey that has raced through every crevice of subculture, every twist and turn of youthful creativity and now, here, with a generation who have always had email, mp3s and downloads, it is as relevant and vibrant as ever.”
I bought my first pair of Doc Martens in 1994. I lost them in a move in 2004. I wore those shoes almost every day for the better part of ten years. The value is outstanding. The extra cost up front is worth it and I’ve never owned another shoe that lasted as long as my Doc Martens. Other than the pair I lost, I still have (and can wear) every pair I’ve ever purchased. But Doc Martens are more than a pair of good boots. They are 50 years of defiance, a spirit devoid of blatant celebrity endorsements and million dollar Super Bowl ads.
“Decades have come and gone, brands have exploded and then imploded, but the 1460 is still there, unique, individual, original. Anti-fashion defined in eight holes.”
|Tools of the Trade|
“What’s seen as information overload to the older generation is just everyday surfing to the new generation. In one weekend edition of The New York Times, there is more information than a seventeenth century man was exposed to in his entire life. Dr. Martens haven’t been around since the 1600s, but in terms of ‚’brands’ that mean something, that last, that reinvent and evolve, they pre-date pretty much everything.”
So #STANDFORSOMETHING . Tell me your Doc Marten story…
*I am not compensated in any manner by Doc Martens nor do I have any affiliation with the company. Quotes from Dr Martens History by Martin Roach