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The Tabi Swiper: the fashion thief terrorising New York

Lock him up!!

Let’s set the scene. Lexus is a NYC fashion girlie, who posts Tabis on main and makes cute little crocheted bralettes to sell on Depop. Josh is a porn-stachioed, nose-ringed hypebeast, with indiscriminate tattoos and a Tinder addiction. They lock eyes in the street, later match on said app, and begin a love story for the ages. Quite honestly a tale as old as time.

Ah, if only true love was that simple. After only one (1) date with Lexus, Josh seemed “pretty resistant” to meet with her again, but eventually gave in to a second date, one that ended in Lexus’ apartment. After what seemed like a pretty normal hookup, Lexus glanced around her apartment and soon discovered that Josh had stolen something – and it wasn’t her heart. No, her Margiela Mary-Jane Tabis were conspicuously absent from her shoe rack, and in that moment she did what any self-respecting person would do: take to TikTok and recount the whole sordid affair, and in the process catch herself a Tabi swiper.


Is it a crime to be young and in love? Is it a crime to be the change you want to see in the world? If so, then lock Josh up! Having said that, it is actually a crime to steal other people’s possessions, something that Josh happens to be guilty of, so maybe he should actually be locked up.

The burglary was outlined in detail by Lexus on TikTok, where she dutifully recounted the whole charade along with greenscreen screenshots of Josh’s Tinder profile. In the video, the disgruntled party explained that, before they slept together, she and Josh “chatted about fashion and stuff” (red flag), and Josh confessed to being after a pair of Tabis himself (motive established).

In the morning before leaving, Josh asked to show Lexus a Spotify playlist on her own phone, because he didn’t have a Spotify account, a fact that they had “already discussed”. After somehow failing to find the playlist Josh hands Lexus back her phone and they say their awkward, post-hookup goodbyes. It’s not until hours pass that Lexus notices he has stolen the shoes, but when she goes to message him he’s not only un-matched her on Tinder but also deleted his contact from her phone while “looking for a playlist”. His mind.


As we all know by now, the famous Tabi swiper is a man called “Josh”. But who is Josh really? A ruthless, dogged criminal, or simply a young man following his heart? At this point, very little is known about him, and if Twitter sleuths are anything to go by, it’s probably not his real name. In the few photos we have seen of Josh, however, he can be seen smoking a cigarette while looking wistfully into the distance, a very obvious and clear rebellion against the devastating rise of vaping in modern society.

It may also be fair for us to consider Josh’s economic status before we tar and feather him. Wages are not increasing with inflation, the cost of living has never been higher – maybe Josh simply did not have the funds to purchase his own pair of Tabis. Must he be pilloried for this fact, something far out of his own control? Also, I’m pretty sure he was wearing Carhartt cargos in one of his Tinder pics, so he must be some sort of outdoor labourer? The entire internet piling onto a working-class man of colour isn’t very progressive and we should all quite frankly be ashamed.


After the original video went viral, Lexus started receiving messages from people who knew “Josh”, and it turns out he in fact was not a working-class labourer, but some guy with a girlfriend (shock). It turns out Josh had taken the shoes he’d stolen from Lexus and re-gifted them to said girlfriend. After she then posted a picture of herself wearing them to her Instagram story, Lexus got wind of the post and tried to confront the swiper himself.

In another now-deleted video, Lexus goes on to say how she eventually got into contact with Josh via social media, where he denied stealing the shoes but also offered to pay for them, which clearly doesn’t make much sense. When Lexus sends him the screenshot of his girlfriend wearing the Tabis, Josh finally gives in, messaging her at 3 in the morning “ight you got me. I’ll get them back to you… I’m just asking to take down the TikTok is all.”

@nextlevellexuss Also strongly considering filing a restraining order so I can feel safe from him just in case. lol #nycdating #tabigirl #tabigate #margielatabis #tinderpartner ♬ original sound - Lex


When Lexus and Josh finally meet up to hand over the Tabis, Lexus remarks that Josh is “smiling” the whole time. This coupled with the fact that Josh mentioned he didn’t have a Spotify account long before he asked for Lexus’s phone shows us that the whole thing was premeditated, and the unhinged grinning shows very little remorse.

In a “final update” posted to her account yesterday, Lexus let her followers know that Josh and his girlfriend had broken up as a result of the infidelity, and thanked all the internet sleuths who had helped her reclaim her prized Mary-Janes. And in a following street style interview with isaaclikes_, Lexus poked fun at the whole affair, imploring the fashion girls of NYC to “lock up your Tabis” because there are thieves out there. Message well and truly received.

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