Everything in life usually has a story behind it.
Sometimes those stories are crazy. Other times they are truly absurd. Well this particular story can have a great ending, but the way it started was great, but with some bumps in the road before an eventual full throttled stop.
Well this story is from me directly. The CEO of ROCKDEEP. Its the story of the Omega Psi Phi 1911. The boot that never happened.
Omega Psi Phi Special Auction
It started simple enough with a run in with some friends of my sister at one of her yearly cook-outs at my mom's house in Maryland. PG County.
A few guys she was cool with were in attendance. They knew I was just fresh into launching ROCKDEEP officially and while I was really still finding my way and direction, I wanted to make splashes where I could. The convo was general at first, as they asked what I was producing and what I had in the works.
I showed them sneakers of all kinds. Samples I had been working on and mock up's of stuff I was working on doing samples of.
For those who don't know. Samples are basic drafts of a sneaker concept in raw or fully developed form.
As I scrolled thru pics on my phone, I swiped by something that made them lean back and do that hand over the face motion. You know the one. It's somewhere between, disbelief, seeing the baddest woman you've ever seen and a fart.
It was a boot I had been thinking about doing, but knew the money to put into it would be a bit more than the sneakers I had made a priority. They instantly asked me if I ever thought about doing a fraternity themed boot. As irony and creative juices would have it... (and an idea from my cousin Bay-Bay) I had already done up some concepts of a Delta Sigma Theta casual sneaker.
The thought of doing a Que Dog Boot intrigued me greatly.
*Step into my way back machine.*
Back in the day when I was in college visiting schools like Prairie View A&M, Howard University, Paul Quinn College and one close to me where many I know attended Bowie State University I was instantly enamored with the Black Fraternity Life. It was like any corny movie you've seen depicting us in all sorts of ways, but more closely to School Daze.
Folks thought because I was known as a pretty boy, I'd instantly be regarded as a Nupe. While I handled a Cane well (shout out to my social frat Devil Dogs), other's thought being an Alpha was my destiny because I was a thinking man. Yet... there was one frat that intrigued me because I was a wild dude who had for the most part been sheltered by military parents all my life.
When the Que Dogs entered a room, be it a cafeteria, a dorm lobby or yard step show everyone took notice. I won't even go into all the stories I've heard and seen first hand, but being a life long Lakers fan, it just seemed like it was my destiny.
While I never got around to being able to pledge due to some infraction's the bruhz had endured, I always respected them and school and business was my ultimate goal in life. I certainly didn't want to pledge grad chapter and miss out on all that came with being respected as a line brother IN SCHOOL. No disrespect to the Grad Chapter Bruhz.
But let me continue and skip back ahead to present day...
After deciding to create this boot, I knew it couldn't be something corny. Nothing they'd look at me and wonder what I was thinking, so I worked with my designer and got busy on producing something 499 bruhz would be proud of. Of course I was keeping one for the archives.
After I finished all the development I showed it to the original two Ques who asked me to do it and they went completely crazy with excitement. They told me they showed it around and didn't get one negative comment.
It was all I needed to proceed on my plan to get pre-orders going and get the ball rolling. I shared it on social media, I created a link on my website (www.ROCKDEEPINC.com) and it caught fire.
Remember. I had just officially launched ROCKDEEP about a month before and this was going to be my big splash and it wasn't even a sneaker!! I was besides myself. I had even thought why didn't I make it 1000 boots, surely it would be rare and there are a million bruhz who'd be mad they didn't get a pair wanting another edition to come out.
Then that one thing happened. The Barrel. The Crabs... that one person who just wanted to be that somebody to have something to say. I honestly don't even remember his name anymore. It frankly doesn't matter to me as he's not worth the letters typed. Whoever it was inboxed me on Facebook and asked why I was making a Omega Boot without their permission. Accused me of being a perpetrator.
Understand at this point Im a grown ass man of at LEAST 42 maybe 43 and I'm thinking "are you serious" Do folks really act like they are frat at MY AGE? I tried to professionally explain how this came to be and why I was posting in all the Omega Facebook groups.
Well not even 20 minutes later, he made threats on my life, had other folks in-boxing me crazy stuff. I'm thinking, this is unreal. Is this dude for real?
I will stop the story and say, this isn't to speak bad on the Que's AT ALL. I love those dudes and obviously have friends and fam who are frat, so I have never held ill will against them as a whole.... because we know there are fools in every group no matter the frat, group or what have you...
This was however a bad look. I was hoping to make the National Chapter alot of money on royalties, as my idea to them was they would make a greater amount of money on royalties than a licensing fee. I know most folks don't even go through National but this was my way of trying to give back.
One person decided to mess it up, and I decided one boot wasn't worth the reputation of my young brand, my business and most certainly all the unneeded stuff I was getting at the time from folks sending messages to my inbox.
So I stopped.
Folks were upset, but they knew why I did it and from what I understand the guy got an ear full at National's and otherwise... but that's the story and I wanted to tell it.
So whats going on now? Why am I putting the only boot I made up for auction? Well simple. More seed money for my company. Everything I've done for ROCKDEEP has been done with my money.
I thought, if folks with deep pockets in entertainment, and sports can spend thousands on the Air Mag or other rare kicks from other brands that don't do for their community what I do, surely I could get them to bid on a shoe that helps a business owned by someone who looks like them.
Do I expect Michael Jordan to bid? Of course not. Do I expect Shaq to? Maybe, because it's not a conflict of interest, but there are plenty of famous and not so famous Que's with deep pockets who can make the story of this boot a positive one.
I hope that everyone who see's this shares it on their social media and send's @'s at all the famous Omega Men you know. Joe Torrey, Terrence J., Ricky Smiley and a host of other's.
I've seen many do far far more for far far less.
Some might ask, why aren't you raising money for a good cause. Who's the money going to from the proceeds of the sale of this boot.
It's funny I never see folks asking where the proceeds are going from the sale of Black History Kicks made by other sneaker companies, or Breast Cancer themed footwear.
Proceeds are going to my business to keep us strong and able to compete with those other's. Proceeds will help others who look like me know they have options to pursue their passion in life.
For all I know this auction may not even make the minimum bid, but that's ok. If I don't shoot my shot and if I hadn't to this point I wouldn't be where I am.
So with that that said, this has been long enough and I hope you kept up. Until next time... Check us out. www.ROCKDEEPINC.com
The Auction if you hadn't seen the link thru-out is below:
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