Anyone remember LA Lights ? (shoes that lit up)

yuandrew

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While looking at some old pictures from when I was maybe 8 years old; I found one picture of me wearing "LA Lights" tennis shoes which were made by LA gear from 1993 to about 1997 or 98. I sort of forgotten that I once had a pair but now I remember them. I first saw my friend in Elementary School wearing those shoes and I just had to beg my mother to get me a pair as well. The shoes had two 5mm red LEDs in the heel which flashed when I jumped or walked. I also recall that they were the pair of shoes that I (Finally) learned how to tie.

Anyway, I can remember walking around the house at night with the lights off just to watch them flash (much to the dismay of my dad who always yelled at me to take my shoes off before stepping on the carpet) to running around Peralta Canyon Park near my cousin's house in Anaheim during a 4th of July concert and firework show just to add to the effect (got some attention from other kids and parents as well while walking back to my uncle's van after the show ended.

However, after a while, my mother suddenly took those shoes away. I missed those shoes and wondered why she would suddenly get rid of them until I found a news article titled "Toxic Shoes" with a picture of LA Lights underneath. As it turned out; the light modules in the shoes employed mercury tilt switches to flash the LEDs every time I took a step. Combined with a set of button cell batteries which also contained mercury at the time and you can imagine kids walking around with about almost half a gram of mercury under their heels. And people now think the tiny bit of mercury in compact fluorescent lamps is pretty bad now a days.

While the LA Lights craze seemed to have died out shortly after that; it still lives on as a childhood memory and even a few other shoe manufactures (Sketchers I know for one) have tried to bring them back with spring type sensors replacing the mercury switches but I rarely see kids today walking around with flashing shoes.
 
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dudemar

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Re: LA Lights (shoes that lit up)

My little brother wore those, lol. When they wore out I took the light module out of the shoe, and discovered the mercury droplet inside. I remember how dense the mercury felt as I shook it side to side.:eek:oo: I also recall how toxic it must've been to put these in shoes, my mom always warned me about how you can get sick from handling mercury.

Ahh, nothing like toxic childhood memories.:laughing:

I admit they were kind of cool, though.
 

Crenshaw

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i remember those! i remember the ads for them.... police radio transmission about "lights" moving around on a basketball court, the picture you see on screen is a dark basketball court, where you can see vague shapes moving around, playing basketball, and you see little lights from where thier shoes would be. By the time the police cruisers get there with all lights blazing, theres no one there, just a basketball bouncing in the middle of the court. and the LA logo appears at the bottom of the screen..

Crenshaw
 

yuandrew

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Ha! I remember that ad now as well shortly after my friend got his LA lights.

The lights on his were at the sides of the shoe near the back now that I remembered. Mine were at the heel facing backwards.
 

Crenshaw

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that ad usually came on during ad breaks on "biker mice from mars" and "batman" and "captain planet"

:sssh:

EDIT: this thread deserves some pictures

LA_Gear_Lights_Leap_Gear_Turbo_Whit.jpg



Crenshaw
 
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xcel730

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:green: I remember seeing those sneakers before. Believe it or not, I used to think they were so cool and wanted a pair for myself. :sick2:
 

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