There was a kid in our town that they used to call Bohack Pete.
To those of you who grew up downstate, the BohackÂ name may be familiar. Bohack’sÂ was a chain of grocery stores; it was along the same lines as A&P, back in the days when groceries were still fairly modest compared to today’s megastores. In the movie The Odd Couple, it’s where Felix Unger goes shopping.
Anyway, Pete wore sneakers that were clearly not KedsÂ orÂ Converse — in fact, they appeared to have no identifiable brand at all. Someone decided that such cheap and generic shoes could only have come from Bohack’s, and so he was christened Bohack Pete.
Did Bohack’s even sell sneakers? Doesn’t matter.
We’ll never know if BohackÂ Pete minded his nickname. I hope not, because if I remember him being called BohackÂ Pete, I’m sure he does too. It’s hard to say when kids became brand conscious. This story is from the 1970s — and by 1979 when I graduated high school, canvas sneakers were falling from favor and Puma and Adidas shoes were the accepted footwear.
It’s a small thing, but to kids, small thingsÂ become huge things. I wish I could go back in time and tell Bohack Pete how in the future his sneakers would be the envy of hipsters everywhere.
2 thoughts on “The Ballad of Bohack Pete”
As the reluctant wearer of Sears Toughskins ‘Jeans’, 1970’s Middle School was all 9 Circles of Brand-Consciousness-Hell rolled into one.
Mine were from the ‘husky” department, so I feel your pain.