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'Where'd You Get Those?'

A self-described "reformed sneaker fiend," author Robert Garcia -- a.k.a. "Bobbito" -- has come out with a tribute to the truly American shoe: Where'd You Get Those? New York City's Sneaker Culture: 1960-1987. NPR's Scott Simon spoke with Garcia about the book -- and the shoe mania it chronicles.

According to Garcia, it's not just about the sneakers. Playground hoops, hairdos and slang are all part of the cultural niche of sneaker collection.

Garcia's obsession began in grade school, when his classmates would taunt him with "The Skippy Song." The reason: Garcia was wearing unfashionable Skippies, a high crime on the playground. As a Web extra, Garcia sings an impromptu version of the tune, linked above.

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Scott Simon is one of America's most admired writers and broadcasters. He is the host of Weekend Edition Saturday and is one of the hosts of NPR's morning news podcast Up First. He has reported from all fifty states, five continents, and ten wars, from El Salvador to Sarajevo to Afghanistan and Iraq. His books have chronicled character and characters, in war and peace, sports and art, tragedy and comedy.