The Obsessive Addiction That Makes Some Runners Stockpile Hundreds of Shoes
The boxes are stacked like books, hurried and askew, one atop another until the towers—just inches from the ceiling—begin to buckle. They lean together, one color, one brand into the next: the orange Nikes, the black Adidas, the blue Brooks, every label facing out- ward. David Iding stores them here, well over 300 pairs, on the second floor of his century-old home in Downingtown, Pennsylvania, in his daughter’s old bedroom, where they obscure the baby-blue walls and clutter the creaking pinewood floors, and where a January sun filters through finger-smudged windows to bathe the room in a soft wintry glow.
Hair wrapped in a loose bun at the nape of his neck, Iding—still “half hippie” at 52, he claims, and a recovering alcoholic—reaches for a black Adidas box at the very top. He opens the lid to reveal a pair of lightweight trainers, well worn, yellow and blue, the Adidas Adizero Boston Ekiden, size 11. He lifts one shoe from the box, bobs it up and down to gauge the weight, just 10.6 ounces. He digs a thumb into the foam, glides it across the mesh, rolls it over, laughs a little.
“These are some ugly dogs,” he says.