27 Jun
A hobby is just a hobby until the scale of involvement gets out of control

Fanatics are fascinating. No matter what the topic at hand is, anyone with enough love for any one person, place or thing makes for strange and titillating fodder. Take 60-something-year-old Marvin. Marvin basically went nuts collecting all things mechanical, and accumulated so much shit he now calls his densely packed 5500-square-foot store in Farmington Hills, Michigan, “Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum.” The main attraction at the Cockroach Hall of Fame Museum in Plano, TX, is basically “dead bugs dressed as celebrities and historical figures.” Apparently the owner, Micheal “Cockroach Dundee” Bohdan, can be seen wearing a fedora lined with dead roaches. I don’t know when or if I’ll ever be in Farmington Hills, Michigan or Plano, Texas, but I’ll definitely stop by either spot if my next road trip takes me there.

I’m sure Marvin and Michael didn’t have any real plans to turn their obsession into actual museums, though. Like most of the best things in this world it probably happened naturally. Liza Snook, “afflicted with a lifetime passion for shoes,” has been collecting them for over 20 years. At the end of 2004 she decided to build an online museum from her collection of shoe images. The meat of her collection focuses on aesthetics…questioning the shoe’s foundation, is it wearable, why should I care, does it intrigue me? Yes Liza, we’re intrigued; we love the twist and sense of humor. And she’s delivered one of the most eccentric shoe collections on the Internet: sneakers made of concrete, cardboard and porcelain, cork flip-flops, high-heeled chocolate pumps, dildo stilettos, tattooed cowboy boots, slippers made of mole skin. It’s the frontier between wearable and experimental.

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