These are the shoes I bought in ~ July 2009. Just a couple of months ago I took some kitchen shears to the shoes (the wife had bought me a new pair for my birthday, so I had a safety net!). I've put a few hundred miles on these shoes, and they are hanging in there fine. Removing the cinch cord and notching the uppers there at my achilles has made them more comfortable, for me. Your mileage may vary.