Making lists of things as we transition to a new year seems like the thing to do. No doubt you've seen a few already. They started showing up online a couple of months ago. There were so many top-this and best-that lists, in fact, you were probably overwhelmed by the ranking extravaganza.
Declaring the best shoes of the year is about as relevant as ranking the best top 20 pop songs of the year. But, it's entertaining and interesting for various reasons, the most obvious of which is finding out whether the ranker shares the same taste as we do. So, we click to the lists and read.
But, who has time for all those lists? Or, if you've skimmed a bunch already, you might be mixing them up! What if you're confusing one list's number two shoe with another list's number 5 shoe? Oh crap!
So, I've aggregated my favorite 5 just for you. These are important for one reason or another. (But, you should know that most of them contain shoes I would otherwise never wear)
Number 5: The 100 Best Running Shoes of All Time
(by Sneaker Report)
I actually hated this list when I first saw it. For one thing, I couldn't believe that I was taking the time to skim through this 101-page slideshow.
Moreover, the list of shoes seemed to be suspiciously based on brand popularity or sales data rather than design, quality, innovation, etc.
And, most appalling for me, none of my favorite shoes appeared on it. (Several appearances by the Brooks Pure line, but nothing from Inov-8? WTF?)
But, you gotta hand it to the folks at SneakerReport, this is a fairly grand endeavor as far as best-of lists go. And, the brazen title indicating that these are the best running shoes of all time is wonderfully obnoxious. Well played, SneakerReport.
Number 4: The Best Running Shoes of 2012
(by The Rogue Run Down)
Once again, I'm giving points for content style rather than selection. I mean the people at Rogue Running have a marvelous flair for finding entertaining similes to go along with shoe descriptions. And, I certainly know how challenging that can be.
So, despite the fact that I'd ignore all but one of the shoes on their list, I highly recommend that you give this best-of 2012 post a read. And, prepare to laugh, or at least snicker.
Number 3: Wear Tested 2013 Top 7 Minimalist Running Shoes Picks
(by Wear Tested [aka. MinimalistRunningShoes.org])
After seeing a few best-shoes-of-2012 lists appear on my rss reader, I thought about how funny it would be if someone went ahead and declared the best shoes of 2013 before the year even started. Then, Nick's team of wear testers posted this piece for us! Ha!
That's right, this modest list of shoes predicts what will be the top minimalist running shoes of 2013. These predictions are "based on early prototypes and test samples [they] have early access to."
But, oooh! Pictures of forthcoming cool shoes! How could you not look at this list?
Number 2: Believe in the Run 2012 B.I.G (Best in Gear) Awards
(by Believe in the Run)
I'm a sucker for sensibly stylish web pages that have a practical interface. And, this awards roster at Believe in the Run doesn't disappoint in that regard.
The clean, simple layout features bold color on a white background with clear product photos. And, the graphic-rich presentation at the top of the post provides a quick rundown of the winners and runners up before we get to the lengthier text descriptions below.
It's a very efficient, easy-on-the-eyes site, which serves as a pleasing way to display a group of things on a list. This list will take so little time to process, you'll wish there were more categories.
Number 1: Top 3 Most Disappointing Running Shoes of 2012
Yes! Folks, if you ignore the previous four lists mentioned on this post, please, at least, click through to this one. Pete's honest remarks about three popular shoes from 2012 are refreshing.
Why do I like this list of disappointing shoes so much? Well, you may suspect that shoe reviews on the web have a tendency to be overly positive most of the time. Wear testers and reviewers might gloss over an otherwise significant fault of a shoe. They don't do this to be deceitful, or anything. They're just being positive. This list is the opposite of that.
There are only three shoes mentioned. So, you won't have to read through a bunch of blabber like you would if this work of genius were on my own site. And, they're all shoes that you've either considered or heard a lot about already.
Definitely check this one out.
And, thanks for reading!