They’re the colorful shells that hit the pavement as you shuffle down the sidewalk. I’m talking about your “kicks” fresh from the box or worn in from the pavement. According to the Urban Dictionary, “kicks” refers to shoes, specifically the newest, most popular sneakers. This slang term doesn’t just live on the foot, but instead has inspired a “kicks” culture. Nice Kicks is an online magazines for shoe-enthusiasts and has “established itself as the leader in sneaker information on the web.”
Prior to its moments associated with swooshes and laces, “kicks” was slang for “something lively and fun,” hence Sinatra’s lyrics “I get no ‘kicks’ from champagne.” This older version has actually evolved quite nicely into its newest version, meaning new “sneaker.” These “kicks” that are worn today are usually bold, brightly colored foot fashion pieces that bring liveliness to a bland tennis shoe. This sense of fun from the original meaning is now worn right on the shoe.
“Kicks” has experienced a few torch passes in the slanguage world and has evolved with culture. Sinatra has passed his version of “kicks” lyrics on to the new performers in the pop culture scene who are making music about their new “kicks.” From a “fun time” to a “popular sneaker,” “kicks” has yet to be kicked out of the pop culture scene. So whether you “get your kicks” (find fun) or “get your kicks” (pick up some sneakers), there is one thing that remains true: sturdy slanguage survives.
image courtesy of sling@flickr