Great Scott! After yesterday, all of Back to the Future has officially happened in the past. While the film got a lot wrong about what 2015 would be like, one iconic feature of the beloved films has finally come true: Self-lacing sneakers. And thanks to Nike, they will also do some good.
Yesterday, the company announced they delivered the first pair of lacing Nike Mags with "power laces" to Marty McFly himself: Michael J. Fox. And on last night's Jimmy Kimmel Live, Fox demonstrated how they work, explaining that the kicks will only be available by auction starting in 2016, with all proceeds going to benefit the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research. Fox founded the organization after his own diagnosis of early-onset Parkinson's disease in 1991.
In a handwritten letter from legendary Nike designer Tinker Hatfield, which Fox posted to twitter yesterday, Hatfield writes: “In addition to your personal pair, we’re creating more pairs for support in aid of The Michael J. Fox Foundation in 2016. We hope that the combined effort will raise even more than the 9.4 million collected in 2011 and contribute in some way to eliminating Parkinson’s in our lifetime.” (If you missed the first model, which didn't lace themselves, they dropped five years ago. Back then, Nike auctioned off 1,500 pairs and donated the funds to The Michael J. Fox Foundation.)
As a true sneaker head, I have to admit that, yes, the Nike Mags are pretty darn cool. (Yet another example of how Nike is always on the cutting edge of design!) But as the granddaughter of a man who lived with Parkinson's for more than 30 years (My grandpa died in 1995), the Nike Mag means more to me than you know— and if my calculations are correct, a host of other folks affected, too.
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