Take your old Converse out of the closet and they probably look a lot like Balenciaga’s newest sneakers.
At least that’s what some social media users are saying about the fashion company’s new kicks. Balenciaga is releasing a new collection of distressed shoes called the Paris Sneaker, and some are going for nearly $2,000. The shoes are “extremely worn, marked up, and dirtied,” in Balenciaga’s own words, and they’re already being roasted online.
The priciest pair in the collection is an $1,850 limited edition of women’s high-tops that have “destroyed cotton and rubber” and “rippings all over the fabric,” according to the product listing. They also have dark smudges and marks dirtying the rubber soles and the brand name written in what resembles Sharpie marker. These shoes are available in black and white. Balenciaga says it’ll only sell 100 pairs of these “extra destroyed” shoes.
The collection also includes a pair of less-distressed high-tops available in red, black, and white for $625. Unlike the more expensive pair, these come without slashes in the fabric and have much less prominent smudging on the soles, but they do have scuff marks.
Mules in red, black, and white round out the collection with some fraying and light smudges on the soles. They’ll set you back $495.
In a press release, Balenciaga said the shoes’ worn-out appearance suggests they are “meant to be worn for a lifetime.” The shoes are available for pre-order.
The collection is drawing plenty of attention and criticism online, with one Twitter user posting a picture of the shoes and saying, “Balenciaga is releasing a new pair of shoes, and I have to assume they are just trolling people at this point.”
“Balenciaga is now selling beat-up Converse for $1850,” another Twitter user commented.
“Balenciaga gotta be a social experiment,” a third Twitter user said.
The fashion house is no stranger to controversy and ridicule. Last summer, the brand caught heat for $1,200 sweatpants that some people said “gentrified sagging” and were “tremendously racist.” In 2017, the company debuted a $2,145 tote bag strongly resembling Ikea’s 99-cent blue Frakta bag.
To the casual observer, it would seem that there isn’t much room to innovate when it comes to ketchup. Tomato ketchup, sometimes called catsup, has been around since the early 1800s, with previous versions of the sauce using everything from mushrooms to fish. By 1876, Heinz got into the catsup game and continues to innovate on the condiment, recently developing a way to grow tomatoes and make the pantry staple on Mars.
However, Heinz’s latest ketchup development is less celestial and aims to address a very Earthly problem—plastic pollution. The firm has announced a partnership with sustainable packaging technology firm Pulpex to develop the first molded paper bottle in the sauce category.
Pulpex and Heinz expect the paper bottles made from sustainably sourced wood fiber to be “widely and readily recyclable” in paper waste streams. It remains unclear whether the bottle will be completely plastic-free. When asked by Dieline if the paper bottles would be plastic-free, Heinz responded by saying the paper bottle would be free from PET, HDPE, and BPA. Heinz also did not rule out using polypropylene for components such as the cap and described the inside coating as being “food grade.”
“Packaging waste is an industry-wide challenge that we must all do our part to address,” Kraft Heinz CEO Miguel Patricio said in a press release. “That is why we are committed to taking steps to explore sustainable packaging solutions across our brands at Kraft Heinz, offering consumers more choices. This new Heinz bottle is one example of how we are applying creativity and innovation to explore new ways to provide consumers with the products they know and love while also thinking sustainably.”
The new bottles are in the early prototyping stage, and Heinz has no consumer launch date yet.
When Vietnamese refugees first settled in the coastal town of Seadrift, Texas, they encountered prejudice and resentment from some of the locals. It culminated on Nov. 25, 1979, when the Ku Klux Klan came to the fishing village. They menaced the Vietnamese fishermen who were competing with white fishermen and told them to get off the water and get out of town. This was part of the hostile reception given to some of the 130,000 Vietnamese refugees who came to the U.S. after the fall of Saigon.
Four decades later, the Vietnamese are now a fixture along the U.S. Gulf Coast. The arc of the Vietnamese resettlement experience is instructive history, and it offers a lens through which to view current attitudes toward immigrants.
In 1979, a Vietnamese refugee shoots and kills a white crab fisherman at the public town docks in Seadrift, TX. What began as a dispute over fishing territory erupts into violence and ignites a maelstrom of boat burnings, KKK intimidation, and other hostilities against Vietnamese refugees along the Gulf Coast.
Set during the early days of Vietnamese refugee arrival in the U.S., SEADRIFT is a feature documentary that examines the circumstances that led up to the shooting and its dramatic aftermath, and reveals the unexpected consequences that continue to reverberate today.
Seadrift is remembered for a killing that took place on August 3, 1979. Prior to this date there had been several negative racial incidents between local white citizens and Vietnamese refugees. As the central area relied heavily on the commercial fishing industry for income, many whites felt threatened by the increasing number of Vietnamese. On the night of August 3, 1979, a fight broke out between Billy Joe Aplin, 35-year-old crabber and Sau Van Nguyen, a Vietnamese crabber which ended with the fatal shooting of Aplin. Within hours of the shooting, several Vietnamese boats were burned and there was an attempted bombing of a crab plant that employed Vietnamese workers. Sau Van Nguyen and his brother Chinh Nguyen were tried for murder and acquitted on the grounds of self-defense. The incident inspired the creation of both the 1981 documentary Fire on the Water and the 1985 film Alamo Bay. In January 2019, Title 8 Productions, LLC premiered an independent documentary called, Seadrift, in Park City Utah. It continues to be screened throughout the United States. The documentary series “Reel South” examined the 1979 incident in the 2020 film “Seadrift”.
1865 In Pulaski, Tennessee, a group of men who had fought in the Confederate army form a secret society, which they call the Ku Klux Klan. The name was likely derived from the Greek word kyklos, which means circle.
1868 The Ku Klux Klan spreads to Texas.
4/30/1975 The Fall of Saigon: Saigon, the capital of South Vietnam, is captured by North Vietnamese forces. The South Vietnamese government surrenders. Saigon is renamed Ho Chi Minh City, and the Vietnam War effectively comes to an end.
1975-1979 The fall of Saigon prompts a wave of Vietnamese emigration, as South Vietnamese refugees flee communist rule with urgency, often in small fishing vessels. Many of these “boat people” are lost to drowning, pirates and dehydration. The sheer numbers overwhelm Southeast Asian host nations, some of which resort to pushing the boats back out to sea.
late 1970s Thousands of Vietnamese refugees resettle in Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi, on the Gulf Coast. Many take up fishing and shrimping, creating competition for local fishermen and shrimpers.
1/1979 Nguyen Van Nam, a former Colonel in the South Vietnamese army, moves to Seabrook, Texas. He eventually becomes head of the Vietnamese Fishermen’s Association.
8/3/1979 Following two years of tension between Vietnamese and local fishermen and shrimpers, two Vietnamese brothers kill a local crab fisherman in Seadrift, Texas. In the aftermath, four shrimp boats owned by Vietnamese are set on fire and a Vietnamese home is firebombed. Eventually, the two brothers are acquitted on all charges, on the grounds of self-defense.
1/24/1981 Local fisherman Gene Fisher meets with Ku Klux Klan Grand Dragon Louis Beam.
2/14/1981 The Ku Klux Klan sponsors a fish fry and rally, which includes a cross-burning ceremony, to support Texas fishermen and to protest increased competition from Vietnamese refugees. Some 750 people attend, including more than two dozen men wearing white robes and carrying rifles and shotguns. A fishing dinghy labeled “U.S.S. Viet Cong” is burned at the rally.
3/15/1981 Local fishermen and Ku Klux Klan stage boat ride to intimidate the Vietnamese. On board are robed, hooded, and armed Klansmen, some of whom are armed. They ride up Clear Creek Channel to Colonel Nam’s house.
3/29/1981 Two Vietnamese fishing boats are set on fire in Galveston Bay.
4/16/1981 Vietnamese Fishermen file suit against Ku Klux Klan in Houston, seeking a preliminary injunction.
4/30/1981 Depositions start in lawsuit.
5/1/1981 Judge McDonald hears first motion for a protective order.
5/8/1981 Judge McDonald hears second motion for a protective order and motion seeking psychiatric evaluation of Beam.
5/11/1981 Preliminary injunction hearing begins, and continues for four days.
5/12/1981 On the second day of the hearing, the Texas legislature passes a law limiting the number of shrimping licenses that can be issued in 1981 and 1982.
5/14/1981 Judge McDonald grants motion for a preliminary injunction in part, barring defendants from unlawful acts of violence and intimidation against the Vietnamese.
5/15/1981 The fishing season opens.
7/15/1981 Judge McDonald files opinion granting the preliminary injunction in part, finding a likelihood of success on plaintiffs’ civil rights and antitrust claims and holding that “it is in the public interest to enjoin [the Klan’s] self help tactics of threats of violence and intimidation and permit individuals to pursue their chosen occupation free from racial animus.” Vietnamese Fishermen’s Ass’n v. Knights of Ku Klux Klan, 518 F. Supp. 993, 1016-17 (S.D. Tex. 1981).
8/13/1981 Judge McDonald issues order dismissing certain defendants and making injunction permanent against remaining defendants (including Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, Louis Beam, and Eugene Fisher). The order notes that the only remaining issue is the request by the intervenor State of Texas and other plaintiffs for the Court to enjoin military operations of the Ku Klux Klan, otherwise known as the Texas Emergency Reserve.
6-3-1982 Judge McDonald files opinion enjoining the Klan from, inter alia, maintaining a private military or paramilitary organization, carrying on military or paramilitary training, and parading in public on land or water with firearms. Vietnamese Fishermen’s Ass’n v. Knights of Ku Klux Klan, 543 F. Supp. 198 (S.D. Tex. 1982).
For the first time ever, Coca-Cola will be launching a unified, global advertising campaign for Sprite, with the new logo slated to be rolled out across all 200 markets, alongside its new brand identity ‘Heat Happens’ slogan.
The marketing initiative will first debut in the US and India this month, just in time for the summer, so you’re always reminded that when it gets too hot out, it’s time to crack open a refreshing can of the lemon and lime soft drink.
Sprite’s cans and bottles will don a more minimalist logo with upright typography, making it more legible. The surrounding starburst has also been burst.
Additionally, the brand has a new focus on sustainability and will be phasing out its iconic green bottles to be replaced with clear ones, which are reportedly easier to recycle. These bottles will also feature a “recycle me” reminder.
A Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) NFT has just been sold for 115 DAI ($115) in what appears to be either a costly mistake or a hack.
Data from OpenSea shows the previous owner with the moniker “cchan” accepting a 115 DAI bid on Monday for BAYC #835. That’s 99.9% lower than the current floor price — the lowest price one is available to buy — of the popular NFT collection.
The same owner also sold Mutant Ape #11670 for 25 DAI ($25) to the same buyer. The floor price for mutant apes is 22.6 ETH ($76,000).
While it is not immediately clear why the owner would accept such low offers, the situation seems to be a mistake with cchan confusing DAI for ETH. There were three other high-value bids for the Bored Ape between 75 ETH and 106 ETH placed by other collectors that were not accepted.
The floor price for BAYC sits at 106 ETH ($350,000) as of the time of writing. But the NFT in question sports sunglasses and a cigarette, several traits that mean it would typically sell higher than the current floor price. (It’s hard to specify exactly how much it specific NFT should be valued — a wider problem that has been perplexing NFT traders when it comes to using them for loans).
Apart from being sold much lower than the floor price, the sale also represents a major loss for cchan, seeing as the BAYC NFT was initially acquired for 16 ETH in August last year.
Pride Month is just weeks away, and you can almost taste it—the rainbow, that is. As an annual tradition, Skittles rolls out special packaging with subdued designs during this time of year in support of LGBTQ+ acceptance.
Normally, Skittles’ Pride wrappers are all-gray, and you might wonder why this is so. Why couldn’t the brand leave the rainbow behind? Why couldn’t it have more pops of rainbow hues? That’s because, each June, the brand gives up its colors for the rainbow Pride flag. Further, as Skittles explains, the gray signifies “the brand’s cemented efforts of support.”
Surprisingly, this year’s packaging has a little more vibrancy, as Skittles is allowing “a splash of color” for a snapshot of how LGBTQ+ individuals “see the rainbow.” To create the wrappers, Skittles enlisted six artists from the Pride community to depict what the rainbow means to them.
Representation is right. Each design is printed with a QR code that, when scanned, directs customers to a virtual studio introducing the collaborators and their work.
The Pride packs will be available in 4oz and 15.6oz sharing sizes at select retailers across the country through June. For each purchase of a special-edition pack, Skittles will donate US$1, or up to US$100,000, to support GLAAD’s work in ending LGBTQ+ discrimination.
Within days, a small white tent stood alone near the washed out ashes of Santa Ana’s Chinatown in 1906 with a cautionary sign: “leprosy: keep out.”
An ailing Wong Woh Ye lay inside the tent in quarantine.
The day before the fire, his documented case of the disease, which was later disputed, prompted an emergency meeting of the Santa Ana City Council on the morning of May 25, 1906. Acting on a resolution drafted by the city’s Board of Health, council members unanimously moved to condemn Chinatown’s remaining buildings and directed the fire marshal to burn it all to the ground.
As word spread, more than 1,000 residents gathered in downtown later that night to watch the fiery finale of a years-long campaign against Santa Ana’s Chinese residents in the wake of the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882. The Los Angeles Times deemed the blaze “as picturesque an event as could be imagined.”
But now, more than a century later, it’s seen as a shameful chapter in the city’s history — one that Santa Ana’s current council is moving to officially apologize for.
“We just want to do what’s right and recognize past wrongs,” said Thai Viet Phan, Santa Ana’s first ever Vietnamese American councilwoman. “I felt it was really important to me as someone who is trying to do my best to revitalize our Asian American heritage in the city.”
In a joint effort, Councilman Johnathan Ryan Hernandez, Planning Commissioner Alan Woo, Assistant City Manager Steven Mendoza and Councilwoman Phan worked on the draft apology.
It offers a formal atonement to “all Chinese immigrants and their descendants who came to Santa Ana and were the victims of systemic and institutional racism, xenophobia and discrimination.”
The resolution is also unequivocal in naming the past city officials responsible as well as deeming the burning of Chinatown as an act of “fundamental injustice, terror, cruelty and brutality.”
It served as the culmination of an effort to rid the area of Chinese residents that intensified when the city bought a lot in 1904 that abutted the enclave as the site of a new city hall.
Fred Lau, the late proprietor of Santa Ana Food Market, was one of the first Chinese Americans to return to Santa Ana during the 1940s. He opened his grocery store in 1949.
“The Lau family gave a lot of us our first jobs in Santa Ana when we were teenagers,” Hernandez said. “They had close relationships with my family.”
Santa Ana Food Market, which is still in business today, is where the councilman recalled first learning of the burning down of Chinatown from its owners.
With that history in mind, Hernandez began working with Woo, his Planning Commission appointee, on ways to redress the injustice when Phan had received an email earlier this year from a resident about recent Chinatown arson apologies elsewhere, including San Jose.
Woo felt a Santa Ana apology as timely as ever.
“There’s a wave of anti-Chinese and anti-Asian hate that has been fueled over the last two years,” he said. “It was important to ask for this, not just for me, but on behalf of the Chinese community because often we’re not viewed as citizens. We are treated as foreigners rather than citizens.”
In addition to the apology, there have also been efforts to commemorate the history with an on-site memorial.
During an October 2020 Downtown Inc. board meeting, a consultant briefly mentioned how an architect and urban planner were working with local historian Dylan Almendral and Chinese American groups on such a project.
“It was certainly a step in the right direction,” Hernandez said.
Taking the lead, supportive council members want to allocate funding from the city’s budget for a future memorial.
But the apology is slated to come first.
During the Santa Ana City Council meeting on May 3, council members directed staff to prepare the resolution to come back before a vote — and soon.
Phan insisted that the vote happen in May, which is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month; earlier in the meeting, both she and Hernandez presented a proclamation to the Lau family in recognition of the month.
The councilwoman also suggested that, if passed, there be a ceremonial signing of the resolution at the parking lot on Third and Bush Street, the site where Chinatown once stood.
Councilman David Peñaloza offered support for the apology and a ceremonial signing.
“It’s a sad, sad chapter in this city’s history,” he said. “We need to recognize the mistake that was made by previous leadership here.”
The burning down of Chinatown wasn’t the last time disease provided cover for discrimination in Santa Ana.
Less than two weeks after the Chinatown blaze, Ye was found dead inside his quarantine tent.
Before that, Councilman John Cubbon resigned from his post on May 28, 1906. The Times reported that he voted to authorize the burning down of Chinatown only after “considerable wrangling” and though there wasn’t an official explanation given, “reliable sources” placed that decision as the reason for his sudden resignation.
For Woo, the current council’s discussion this week marked a significant step toward making amends long overdue.
“The people’s democracy was used against Chinese Americans,” he said. “That deserves an apology. The lives of over 200 Chinese immigrants were affected by that decision.”
Apple’s long-runningShot on iPhone campaign has now entered a dreamlike realm, where all imaginations are attainable with the right mindset… or app.
The Cupertino giant has commissioned Melbourne graphic designer Gaia Barnatan, who goes by the alias Liquid Pink, to transform eight photos—shot on an iPhone, of course—into four surreal compositions.
Here, ordinary objects like a burnt matchstick and a strawberry aren’t so predictable anymore when juxtaposed against stunning skies.
According to 9to5Mac, the artist created these photo fusions on the Bazaart app, which enables easy double-exposure shots like these ones, thanks to its magic background eraser and capacity for 100 photo layers (or five video layers).
Your camera roll doesn’t always have to be filled with food photos and screenshots.