How to Spike Your Shoes + a Tale of Violence

If you came here from the google and just want the tutorial for how to make spiky shoes without using goddamn power tools, jump here.

I have mixed feelings about my interest in fashion… in that I know it’s incredibly shallow at times but I’m not a moralist so I know I don’t really need to make an arbitrary value judgement about being shallow.

If I am going to justify my interest in fashion, which is mostly an obsession with shoes, I will say…Jeffrey Campbells kick ass. At least when they are on my feet they do.

I went to my friend Mindy’s going-away party (sniff, we will miss you Mindy). It is probably the last time I’ll see her apartment, which I will also miss, sliced in above a Thai restaurant in Hilcrest. I took my gas mask photo there for her Apocalypse rager.

I wanted to impress Mindy because she is stylish and has an adorable laugh, so I wore these boots of kicking and stomping:


I was having a pretty good time until some misogynistic monster told the story of forcing an underage girl to walk home with jizz in her hair. Even in his account, she very clearly said not to do that, but he thinks no means yes and he even rubbed it in for her. This guy was basically who everyone thinks Tucker Max is, but actually an asshole. I mean, so is Tucker, but he knows he is. This monster I met last weekend pretends to be self-deprecating as an excuse to tell stories for attention in which he is always the hero and women are unfortunate victims. Because, you know, sorry, that’s just how men are lol haha what-a-riot no fuck you.

“I bet she’s traumatized for life,” I said.

I was possibly also cranky because I was sober. I’ve been trying to be nicer to my liver. Aside: I have been really hungry lately and I realized it is because I’m consuming less liquid calories.

By about 2am I’d ironed out most of my crankiness talking to a new friend on the couch about his job at Alesmith and how I really ought to give the new Skrillex album a chance. I mean normally I would be like oh no, sir, my DJ friends told me never to Skrillex but this guy could make even Skrillex sound appealing, is what I’m saying.

I was quite enjoying the conversation when a new guy walked into the party with his dudes, put on Bubble Butt by Major laser, and asked me to dance.

“I’d rather not,” I said, and my Alesmith friend waved his hands, no thank you. Bubble Butt said if we refused him, he’d shake his bubble butt in our faces.

Now I’m no stranger to butts in my face, but I don’t like stranger butts in my face, and this guy didn’t even know my name. I mean, please, people, don’t put your butts near my body parts without a proper introduction!  I raised my right foot high, a clear message, I thought, that if he proceeded with shaking his bum-bum near my nose, it would only meet boot.

Yeah, I shoved him with my shoe, pretty hard. Then I caught Katelyn’s eye and we high-tailed it outta there. My only regret is that I didn’t stay long enough to say, “Oh, I’m sorry, are you butt-hurt?”

I immediately scored two new pairs of Jeffery Campbells at the PB Buffalo Exchange. For my protection. Against butts.


DIY Easy Spiked/Studded Heels

These are pretty quick to make. I finished mine in the commercial breaks between watching Breaking Bad. Did you see the last episode? Holy fuck, what a phone call.

You’ll need…

  • Screw-on spikes. Spikes are expensive. Try Amazon, maybe. Mine are like these.
  • An awl. To avoid using power tools, we’ll make the holes by hand. So keep that in mind when picking the shoes – are you strong enough to stab ’em? I got one from Ace Hardware San Carlos Hardware for $4
  • A screwdriver with a plastic handle
  • Shoes. If you want to do pumps like me, you’ll need to choose a pair with a seam down the back, because I am not strong enough to stab through 12 layers of plastic/fabric/plether/suede/whatever-the-fuck so I’ll just go in-between the stitches
  • Maybe some super glue
  • Maybe like some felt dots or something


bushmills-whiskey-reed-ginger-beer-cocktail-mixed-drinkPour whiskey over ice and splash some sours or ginger beer or nothing on it. This is always step one why do I even have to remind you??


spikes-close-up-shoesTake a good look at the shoes and plan where you’re going to place the spikes. I opted to go in between the seams, with 4 spikes in each shoe. Space between them makes them look more menacing. I didn’t need to mark my holes, because I can count stitches relatively well, but if you need to do that probably some white out or a pencil, right?


stabbin-shoe-with-awl-lookit-my-glitter-nails-spikesPlace the tip of the awl in between the seams from the outside of the shoe. Place the plastic handle of the screwdriver inside the shoe, and use it to help you make a clean hole without denting the shoe and also so you don’t stab yourself. Go slow so you don’t break the stitches, and push inward with the awl while twisting. Like you are killing something through its eye-socket and you want it to suffer.

If you do break a stitch, you can be paranoid and put a drop of super glue on it though I’m pretty sure the screwed-on spike will hold everything together.


Screw that spike on. Do I really have to explain this? Tighten it with the screwdriver, too.


The way my particular shoes fit, I can’t even feel the screws, but if they rub on your feet in an uncomfortable way you could try a felt dot or a piece you cut from a gel insert to add space between your precious foot and the screw. Or you could just suffer for fashion like everyone else, duh.


San Diego on Smartphone

I have become a tourist in my own town.

I knew I was on the path to this. Start a blog about San Diego. Start paying attention to San Diego. Why don’t I just start a San Diego fan club?

No. I hate this place, remember?

But now I have a nice camera in my pocket at all times. I’ve been starting to notice that places are beautiful. I’ve been starting to take picturesque landscapes of the shoreline. Who am I?

Or just pictures of half eaten tacos. By the way, this was a stunning fish taco. (OB Pier)

Or just pictures of half eaten tacos. By the way, this was a stunning fish taco. (OB Pier)

I am Sami 2.0. I am evolved. I am smartphone.

Late at night I poke my thoughts into a 5.41 x 2.69 x 0.37 inch glass and aluminum and plastic box.

“I am now learning from my magical endless home screen that if I want something explained to me like I’m a dumbass, go to Huffington post. Huffington post now relegated to my ‘after 1am feed'”

I show my friends things they already know. “Look, I can just talk into it, and it becomes a text message.” Yes, we know, Sami. Our iPhones have been doing this for years. This is what it is like writing a blog about San Diego, to San Diegans. They all have a vague sense that they already know what I’m telling them, but they endure me because they like me or maybe just because I’m pretty.

“I can feel myself getting smarter. The singularity is near.”

I’m relentless. I won’t stop. The smartphone eats my dreams. I don’t need to sleep. I have 7 years of technology to absorb.

“Flow (SwiftKey) should have a drunk sami mode. If it weren’t so goddamn noisy in this bar I’d yell at the microphone thingie.”

Every pretty thought is a potential status update. Every interesting encounter, a photo opportunity. I am now taking a LOT of pictures of lizards.

Pet Kingdom is my favorite zoo in San Diego and yes that is a real alive lizard.

Pet Kingdom is my favorite fish/reptile store in San Diego and yes that is a real alive lizard.

“LTE is a lie.”

(Well, Tmobile LTE is a lie. My friend with Verizon informs me that his network is shiny and perfect nyah nyah.)

Smartphone isn’t all joy and wonder. I find myself getting angry with less than perfection. Smartphone severely disappoints me. The future was supposed to be limitless! Why wont it share my 3rd party contacts with 3rd party apps? Why does it prioritize the LTE network (0 bars) when there are perfectly well-functioning 2G or 4G networks nearby? Why do I live in a hobbit hole in La Mesa?

“Smartphone is crawling into my psyche. Head explodes with thoughts as soon as it hits the pillow. Resorted to half a xanax, sublingually.”

Yeah, anyway, I am going to be weird ’til I figure out all this new technology.

Is San Diego Really Boring?

San Diego Survival Guide just hit its 6 monthiversary. Yup, that means I’ve made about 24 regular weekly posts (mostly on time, too). I’ve been thinking about what I’m doing with this blog, and my relationship with this city.

In college I sustained a group created by Robert Turner and Grace Nam, in which we made an effort to go out exploring almost every Thursday night (…hey that’s when this blog updates). We took turns leading adventures, burning mixed CDs, and sharing adventurous spots in San Diego. We made a night of surveying pedestrian suspension bridges (there were three). We looked at the topiaries off vine street. We climbed the Secret Stairs of La Mesa. We went to a steel bridge in Jamul because it looked cool on Google Earth.


A blurry nighttime photo of the Secret Stairs of La Mesa

In the past two years, I’ve made going out part of my regular schedule. Katelyn and I get cabin fever because our hobbit-hole apartment has low ceilings and our third roommate is her extensive hookah collection, which really doesn’t leave much room for us… Really, it is all of her research and voracious appetite to get out of the house that I have to thank for my knowledge of places, events, subcultures and what’s happening right now in the city.

So, I feel more focused than most on discovering the truly interesting parts of SD and analyzing its culture. Most people living here are transplants, lost in a sea of tourist traps. The locals that remain are either jaded and fantasize about leaving, or they are comfortable, heavy with their habits.

This town is uniquely apathetic in a glossy-eyed, vacationer-sucking-on-a-Mai-Tai kind of way. We just don’t care, and while this may make us seem culture-less and unambitious, we also are strangely accepting of weirdos. This is where the subcultures have room to flourish. Punks throw subterranean rock shows, burners dance naked in large suburban backyards, polyamorous lovers gather in gigantic cuddle puddles, kinky kids suspend their wives from rafters.

When I started the Guide, I envisioned a personal blog which would examine my life’s intersection with the SD underground. I’d gather email addresses and beacon out parties to the people. I’ve found, however, that I am protective of the secret places and secret societies. I want the world to know they exist, but only the worthy to find them.

The truth is, this Guide is still very necessary.  Yes, when I first did a Google Trends analysis on “San Diego nightlife,” my heart sank.

google-trends-san-diego-nightlife-clubsThe golden years seemed to be 2004 and before. Had I missed my chance? Was I wasting my efforts on non-“trending” topic?

But, no, this is only further evidence that the few young and exciting people out there need help. We’re the last fun warriors. We are in survival mode.

So many people find my blog because they search “Why is San Diego so boring?” or some variation thereof. There’s bored people out there hungry for something real, something exciting, something fun… or just pizza.

why-is-san-diego-so-boringAlso one lonely person found my blog by typing “baptism vagina” in the Google. I don’t even…

Screen shot 2013-09-12 at 6.52.57 PMI know there’s plenty to do, I know there’s stunning and quirky and intelligent and sexy people in this city. I am making it my mission to connect these people together.

Soon, I’ll get my first smart phone and I’ll take care of my more casual visitors by posting pictures and short reviews when I’m out at my favorite late-night establishments to this blog and/or my facebook page. I may be very drunk. There may be selfies.

Next, I’m gathering an army of survivalists and I need your help. If you have interest in being part of the movement, put your facebook profile link in the box below, and we’ll form a group (and I’ll add you as my friend). I’ll be working with local business owner and my good friend “Keshet” to set up parties with all sorts of crazy bad stuff and alcohol, and more alcohol, and unlike the other guys out there, there’s no way we’re charging cover.  Here’s a teaser picture:


Fill out the form if you want to help me throw parties…

I’m pretty excited. But also I made this today and it makes me happy: lol … I have problems.

What to do when your wallet is stolen

If you’re here from the Google and just want step by steps for what to do when your wallet is stolen, skip to that part of the post here.

Remember how I said I wanted a trainwreck date? I think maybe I’m the trainwreck date. If I had any shame, I would have been asking myself what I could have done differently, what went wrong, how this could have happened….

New rule: avoid hardwood floors as a surface for sex.

Of course, I’m now only physically battered (hardwood floors) and the emotional bruising has healed. But when I checked my bank account Monday and discovered my wallet was stolen I wasn’t sure if I felt more like a victim of crime or a victim of my hangover. It’s hard to distinguish despondency from the rotten feeling in my insides after one rum pineapple, two Long Beach Iced Teas, and one Audios Mother Fucker.

New rule: don’t drink anything blue.

I wish I could say all that drinking fogged my memory, but it did not. I remember very clearly turning into an annoying foam troll, scooping up bubbles and blowing them at angry people. Now I realize they didn’t want soap in their drinks, but at the time they just seemed to be enemies of fun. When a woman said to me, “Do you not SEE this?” indicating the phone and pack of cigs she held aloft the bubbles like Simba over the Serengeti, I replied, “Do you not SEE that you’re already elbow deep in bubbles?” My date thought I was fiery or something. I am just embarrassed.

New rule: stay out of the foam pit.

Anyway, when your wallet is stolen, you are going to be making TONS of phone calls.

  1. Call your bank and cancel your card(s).
  2. Call the police (look up the local non-emergency number online and be prepared to leave a message).
  3. Call the credit bureaus and set up a 90-day fraud alert.
  4. Call an identity theft protection agency.
  5. Call the DMV and set up an appointment for your replacement license.

Here’s how I handled it:

1. I called my bank.

My bank had already frozen my card, because apparently my purchasing habits algorithm conflicts with spending $25.19 at Taco Bell and then renting a hotel room.  OK, first of all… TWENTY FIVE DOLLARS AT TACO BELL? I love taco bell but I don’t even know how to spend that much money there. Even the most decked out supreme crunchy space saucer wrap thing is less than 5 dollars. Either my crook had friends, or she bought two party packs and an XL Mountain Dew and contemplated her life choices over 24 tacos.

My pickpocket spent $25 on Taco Bell and rented a crappy hotel room, among other things. CRIME SPREE LOL.

My pickpocket spent $25 on Taco Bell and rented a crappy hotel room, among other things. CRIME SPREE LOL.

My bank also transferred me to the identity theft protection service they offer, but I took down the number to call them back so I could think about my options.

2. And then I called the police.

It’s important to make an official report, because, hmm, I’m not sure why but it was pretty exciting to have the police calling me every couple of hours over 3 days trying to get through my wall of bad reception and general unavailability. Nothing makes my hair prickle quite like hearing “This is the San Diego Police Department calling for [my real name].”

3. I put up a fraud alert.

My bank instructed me to call the credit bureaus and put up a 90-day fraud alert.  Equifax will notify Experian and Trans Union for you, so you only have to call the first one. I’m starting to feel like the person who stole my wallet was an opportunistic miscreant and not a skilled criminal, because it looks like she tried to buy something from Boost Mobile and frantically reversed the charges. Or maybe it’s some sort of off-the-grid cell phone trick only the pros know about. Anyway, the fraud alert will protect me from people trying to open up lines of credit in my name.

4. Should I sign up for identity theft protection?

Yes. Yes I should. The anxiety told me I have to do it, because people out there might try to personify me to uh….well…get into bars underage? Get speeding tickets under my name? Um. Not quite sure what they can do with my driver’s license but CNN tells me to be very afraid.

Anyway, it’s only $13 a month and I might as well try it for awhile.

5. This one’s IMPORTANT. Make an APPOINTMENT with the DMV

The Tuesday after Labor Day @ the DMV was a horde of sweating unhappy people. They spilled out of the overcrowded building onto the hot sidewalk. Oh no. Oh no, no, no, I thought, why did I think today would be a good day? Staff didn’t even try to harass me for bringing in my iced chai latte, which I’m pretty sure is verboten.

At 3pm I got through a 3 person line at window 22 to check in for my appointment. At 3:10pm I wandered back inside to look for a chair. At 3:20pm the woman who let me sit next to her gave me a murderous glance when my number was called. At 3:30pm I was back in my car with my temporary driver’s license, feeling like I had cheated at life.

So yeah, make an appointment in advance by calling the number on their website.

In conclusion…

All told, I’m not too shaken by this whole thing. All I really lost was the $30 cash and the cost for replacing my drivers license, as my bank should refund the charges. I amuse myself by thinking that someone out there got wasted in a hotel room full of gorditas.