Ultra-rare Apple sneakers from the 1990s on sale for $50,000

Meanwhile, Einstein dismantles the creation myth in $125,000 letter

A pair of Apple-branded sneakers have gone on sale for $50,000 through art broker Sotheby's.

Seeing what retro Apple tat sells for these days, someone with incredible precog powers picked these up from a giveaway at a mid-'90s sales conference and decided never to wear them.

That, or they didn't fancy a call from the fashion police.

Either way, they're now cashing in for a five-figure sum. Those greenbacks will get you the white shoes manufactured by Omega Sports with the "old school rainbow Apple logo" embroidered on the tongue and outer side. The generous seller has also kindly thrown in an alternative pair of red laces.

We're guessing you get the box too.

"Having never reached the general public, this particular pair of sneakers is one of the most obscure in existence and highly coveted on the resale market," Sotheby's insisted.

The condition of the sneakers is "consistent with age," the broker said, "imperfections include yellowing around the midsoles and glue, and light marks on the toe boxes."

Ironically, the size 10.5 footwear will be more useful than the $190,000 4GB first-gen iPhone in a factory-sealed box that sold at auction last week. They should be perfectly serviceable shoes if you can stomach the price tag, '90s aesthetic, and the warning that "sneakers manufactured 10 years or more prior to date of sale may display signs of age and may deteriorate faster with wear."

The original iPhone, on the other hand, is now little more than a paperweight due to Apple withdrawing support for ancient versions of iOS and the handset being stuck in 2G land. Then again, who can claim to understand the inscrutable mind of the Apple fanboi?

In more positive news about valuable items, a letter written by physics legend Albert Einstein addressing the religious mindset and the nature of God is being sold by The Raab Collection with an asking price of $125,000.

This is a little more understandable since, as the historical document dealer says, "we have never seen another letter of Einstein on either of these subjects; indeed it is one of the most illuminating letters ever written on the subject that so defines him: the creation of the universe."

The letter, written in 1950, is to one Mrs Marthan Munk, wife of a rabbi and religious studies teacher, who inquired on behalf of a group of Jewish students in America whether Einstein thought creationism could be ever reconciled with scientific knowledge. The missive says (translated from his native German):

As long as the stories in the Bible had been taken literally, it was obvious what kind of faith was expected from the readers. If you are however to interpret the Bible symbolically (metaphorically), it is not clear anymore whether God is in fact to be thought of as a person [and therefore not a monotheistic deity], which is somehow analogous to humans. In that case it is difficult to assess what remains of the faith in its original sense.

I think, however, that the person who is more or less trained in scientific thinking is alien to the religious creation (in the original sense) of the cosmos, because he applies the standard of causal conditionality to everything. This does not refute the religious attitude but, in a certain sense, replaces and supersedes it.

With best regards, Albert Einstein

That might not be what she wanted to hear, but it would be ridiculous to expect anything else from the father of modern physics. "The feeling that I get when I see something like this, which is so personally and so scientifically evocative of the great 20th century debate, from the pen of Albert Einstein, is just pure excitement," commented Nathan Raab, president of The Raab Collection.

Earlier this year, a handwritten draft of an essay on his theories of relativity meant for publication in an encyclopedia went on auction. It was valued at more than $350,000. ®

More about


Send us news

Other stories you might like