A Curious Yellow

In which a kleptomaniacal public purloins Tommy Doodle-painted footwear

By next month he hopes to sustain a total of 30 pairs, up from the present 25. Then he'll be the caretaker of the collection. "If I see a pair that's ripped apart, I replace them," he says, "so it doesn't look like crap." He estimates he spends $40 to $50 per week for the spray paint, shoes, and gas it takes to maintain the shoes and bikes. "They're out there, and we don't want people to think [they're] just a piece of junk. I want to keep 'em fresh all the time."

Unlike his shoes, Doodle is difficult to nail down. "He's kind of a mystery man," says Jerry Miles, owner of J. Miles Off Las Olas. The store is located near two telephone poles decorated with Doodle's shoes and was recently presented (anonymously, natch) with another pair. "I've never met him, but he left the shoes at our back door," Miles explains. "I still don't know what he looks like."

Miles may soon find out. He's planning to sell Doodle's yellow footwear, filled with cement, as doorstops. There will be combat boots, dominatrix boots, even little kids' cowboy boots. "We're going to be the exclusive distributor," Miles enthuses. The decision makes sense, at least aesthetically. "We're pretty eclectic," he says. "We have a big cow out front."

Tommy Doodle knew he was on to something from the start: "I was like, 'Yellow shoes, man, right on!'"
Michael McElroy
Tommy Doodle knew he was on to something from the start: "I was like, 'Yellow shoes, man, right on!'"

Meanwhile Doodle is drawing up plans for an even bigger, bolder work to "just light everybody up." After all, there are plenty hues left in the spectrum. "There's a lot of colors out there," he observes, "and there's a lot of items."

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