La Plata High School is known for their triumphs in academics and a student body that goes above and beyond. It has a low suspension rate, few fights, and is hailed as the number one school in Charles County. You would think that it would be the perfect school, but those who do not attend La Plata do not know the war that wages in these halls.
A battle takes place every day at La Plata that sheds no blood and leaves none injured. The battle predates any student and most of the teachers, with the exception of the LP veterans. That fight is known as the common shoe struggle.
For years if someone were to walk into La Plata on any given day, they would see that a good seventy percent of the students wore or owned at least one pair of Vans shoes, and the other thirty percent were planning to buy a pair.
But no longer will Vans reign without opposition in La Plata. Another old-school shoe is making a large appearance in the school.
Converse is being spotted more and more on students’ feet rather than the once completely dominant Vans, and the new shoe brand seems to be gaining a lot of popularity with the students.
But in a high school driven by brand names, one must ask, “Why is someone wearing something out of the norm?”
So in an attempt to find some answers, I reached out to the students of La Plata for their reasons as to why they have chosen either side. I ran across Elijah Melton, who struck me as inviting, and asked him his take on the trend.
“It’s not that I am trying to be different. Don’t get me wrong, I like Vans, but at the same time I don’t want to be like everyone else. I want to be my own person,” Melton said.
Naturally, I had to find an opinion of the opposition, and the first student that I encountered was a student named Keith Viering. I wanted to know that if he wore VANS to fit the status quo or if he just actually liked the shoe enough to always wear them.
“I do actually like Vans. I don’t wear them just to be a follower, but it doesn’t hurt that everyone else wears them too,” Viering said.
Vans shoes are a big part of the student body, but not everyone wears them simply because most of the school does. And Converse shoes aren’t worn just to be different, but because some people prefer to not always be seen as the common La Plata student.