The concept was created two and a half years ago, Kix and the City’s interview was published on May 24th, the line began on June 15th at 8pm, the long wait finally came to an end on June 17th at 11am when ARIs Menthol 10s finally made it into the hands of 70 eager sneakerheads.
Written/Produced By: Rich “MaZe” Lopez
Pix: Rich “MaZe” Lopez
As reported on the eve of their release, ARI’s Menthol 10s drew a long line well in advance of their release. The most avid campers began camping out on the Thursday prior to Saturday’s release, spending an excess of 30 hours outside of ALIFE on New York’s Lower East Side. At around 9:30am ALIFE’s Earsnot came through to provide order to the line. As Rivington Street doubled as an overnight hostel for a day or two, it became considerably littered with food, bottles, cartons, bags, etc. Earsnot asked the line to clean up the mess, but hardly anyone budged. One camper though, decided to ask for a broom as he went to work on the mess outiside of ALIFE. After his duty was done, he was granted the first position in line, let that be a lesson to all.
Exhausted and anxious, but undeterred, the arduous wait came closer to an end as ARI pulled up in his, now familiar, blue van.
Although the release was originally scheduled for 10am, ARI was up late the night before putting the final touches on his coveted Menthol 10 packages causing him to arrive at around 10:45am. As ARI and his Godson came out of the van with about 10 extra packages, they were both happily greeted by the long line.
Although many designers/artists choose to wait indoors while everything is prepared, ARI was more comfortable waiting for his own release, right alongside everyone else.
As ALIFE was busy preparing for the launch, ARI, as always, took the extra time to talk to everyone he came across both as an entire line and individually. He made sure that everyone in line understood what his design stood for, why he put the sneaker together, and most importantly, why they waited days to spend nearly $300 on a pair of kix.
As time passed, no doubt incredibly slowly for the already exhausted campers, one of the more famous ARI fans showed up to support ARI. Hot 97s, MTV’s, Shade 45s, DJ Cipha Sounds came through to say “what’s up” to the campers, take some pictures, and of course, secure his pair of Menthol 10s.
A couple of minutes later, ARI took one last picture before going inside to sign each and every Menthol 10 Box purchased at ALIFE that day. Not only did ARI sign boxes, he also spoke to each person individually about kix, life, anything. For those that cared, this release was not about the physical kix, it was about the people, the people who came to purchase the kix and the people behind the Menthol 10 package.