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Friday, February 17, 2012

The Wily Sock, or But If You Try Some Time, You Get What You Need

I like it when it’s quiet like this, don’t you? No one here but you and me, the winds of change blowing softly through the cubicles (because in my fantasies, we work together), the smell of burnt toast wafting in from the lunchroom…

It’s Friday, glorious, golden-haloed Friday, where anything is possible and everything is affordable.

Isn’t it nice here, in this moment?

But what does the iPod have to say about it? For the iPod sees much, tells some. O Mighty iPod! Earbuds stuffed ever-so-delicately into my ears, music shuffled and observed with both concern and bemusement, what does the weekend hold for us?

Conventional Wisdom by Built to Spill
Waiting for the Great Leap Forward by Billy Bragg
Too Fake by Hockey
The Hanging Garden by The Cure
Born to Wander by Rare Earth
Set Fire to the Rain by Adele
Anti-D by The Wombats

And there you have it. This weekend? The iPod suggests that, despite the advance in years, there is still much to learn—and no one’s saying that you can’t dance while doing it.
So do we have time for some quick silliness?

Because T’s concerned about his socks.

You remember T, don’t you? The man who left the exciting, variable climes of Minneapolis for the unimaginative shores of southern Florida? A man who has successfully fended off a clothing revolt? A man who sees beautiful women everywhere he goes?

That T.

He called.

We take you to that call, already in progress.

“… so I just see them as undisciplined, you know what I mean?”

I jerk from my revelry. I had been staring at the window washer outside of the 48th floor, torn between not wanting to distract him and wanting to run to the window, mouthing “How cold are you right now? Are you scared? What do they pay you an hour, anyway?”

“I’m sorry,” I say. “Who’s undisciplined now?”

He sighs. “Have you been listening?”

“Of course,” I lie. “Something about discipline.”

He sighs again. “My socks. We're talking about my socks.”


A quick expulsion of air from T’s end. “Excuse me? Did you just pfffft me? “

There's a slight pause while we consider my lack of manners.

“It’s my fault,” he says, sadly. I imagine him to be shaking his head. “I’ve failed to convey to you the importance – nay, the gravity – of the sedition behind the undisciplined sock.”

“Have you been in the thesaurus again?”

“No. Nope. Not at all. On no account. By no means.”

We laugh.

“All right,” I say. “Tell me about your socks.”

The telephone line crackles with the space between Minnesota and Florida.

“Socks,” he says. “We’ve discussed their standing insofar as the body is concerned, have we not?”

I nod. “Many times.”

“The spinners, the slouchers, the heels that refuse to be identified: there is no place for these socks in our lives.”

“Nooo,” I intone.

“And so when I found myself in possession of a number of them, I had to ask myself, well, what’s it all about?”

There is silence.


“And what?” he responds. “And nothing.”

More silence.

“Well, maybe something.”


He sighs. What he is about to say pains him.

“The more you pay for a sock, the better it is.” He sighs again. “Remember those Gold Toes I had?”

“I do.”

“Man,” he says. “Now those were some socks.”

He sighs again. The phone crackles across a thousand miles.

“Yep,” he says wistfully. “Those were some socks.”

Happy Friday, everyone. Don't forget to come back tomorrow!


Sausage Fingers said...

There is a sign in Georgia about 3 miles from the Florida border that reads: NO SOCKS ALLOWED
I am glad to hear you pal from Ana Maria Island is following the rules of the sunshine state...we don't want your static cling down here...
Cheers, Sausage

Pearl said...

Is anyone else having problems commenting? Do you see a word verification??

Argent said...

Seditious socks! Yes, they do exist. I have owned such rebellious footgarments. The objec of my special odium is the Strangler: it'll just sit there all day, gradually cutting off the circulation to your feet, leaving them frozen, yet strangely sweaty. And when you take them off, there are the tell-tale circular toothmarks on your leg. There is no place in our lives for such as these.

Pearl said...

Argent, I know of whence you speak. I have a couple pair myself that leave little anklets of unhappiness carved into my flesh.

Sometimes, ya just gotta pay the extra money for the good ones.

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

We have homicidal maniac socks in our house...they kill off their partners and hide the bodies in places not yet discovered. We can smell them, we just can't find them.

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

No word verification on your site...but they are sneaky.

Camille said...

Cheap socks you say? "Pfffft" For a truely heinous undergarment experience let's talk cheap bras...but don't get me started.

Have a lovely weekend Pearl.

PS: Yes, blogger is behaving badly today - not unlike cheap socks and bras.

ellen abbott said...

I relegate socks to the same cave in which my shoes live. viva la bare foot.

Pearl said...

Delores, that comment has sent my mind reeling. I think there's a whole 'nother post there!

Camille, cheap undies! Let us not speak of the cheap undies -- I've spent a lifetime looking for good, stay-put underwear...

ellen, why are you so cruel to me? :-) Ahh. Barefoot. I'll be barefoot in, mmm, let's see, three to four months?

Glen said...

when it comes to socks - all i ever crave is a pair. a genuinely matching pair.

So hard to come by

esbboston said...

I am a Vibram FiveFingers shoe sales guy. Very few of my customers wear socks, let me see how many in my sales database .... None! I am the only person who has wore toe socks that I know, and then rarely. I am fixing to get a huge new supply of styles and {c}{o}{l}{o}{r}{s}{!!!!!} the eXcitement is building, I hardly slept last night.

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

You go for the "Soprano Sock" story Pearl. You are the only one who could do justice to the Criminal Minds of socks.

fishducky said...

Erma Bombeck said the socks that disappear in the laundry went to live with Jesus. I have the feeling that's not what's happening with T's socks.

StephanieC said...

You know what though? The cheaper socks are often just 100% cotton which ARE WAY BETTER when jogging/pretending you know how to run/exercising for me.

The synthetics give me near immediate blisters!!

And, in all honesty, your window washer is probably high on weed, on parole, and not paid well for his job. Is he on a "chair" or a swing stage?



R. Jacob said...

Blogger has changed word verification to two words, one which is barely legible.

Socks, only for work and for golf, the low cut kind, which don't leave the weird tan lines.

It is true, Florida has a no sock rule.

I have some of the Gold Toe socks, which get used about once every six months.

Love the Stones reference!

Symdaddy said...


I could write a book about socks!

Don't you just love socks that seem to be just a little bit too solid to be able to fit onto your feet comfortably?

...the way some of them are capable of knowing when their three days is up and head for the laundry basket on their own?

...and what about how they manage to maintain an 'aroma' for sooooo long?

Ya gotta love socks!!!

Pearl said...

Glen, a matching pair of socks is a thing of beauty.

esb, so THAT's what's in the air today! The new socks!!

Delores, I'm taking notes already. :-) Watch this space for The Tale of the Sock, or We're Going to Need a One-Legged Man on the Case.

fishducky, oh, I like that. Good ol' Erma!

Stephanie, he's been lowed down in a little metal box. I try not to look over at him much, afraid to stun him dizzy with my beauty. Yeah. Beauty. :-)

R., yeah, that's what I'm hearing, but I don't have word verification on! I'm also seeing that on a number of other blogs lately. Wonder what is up with Blogger??

Pearl said...

Symdaddy, what the world needs is a good pair of four-day socks! Who's with me??

Eva Gallant said...

I guess I never gave that much thought to socks....whoops! I'm barefoot right now!

Silliyak said...

Try buying three or four pair of the same sock, so when you lose one, it still has other mates right until the point when you have one sock (sometimes literally) standing

mrwriteon said...

Gold Toes are the BMWs of socks. I've got some GTs that are over a decade old. I sing their praises. In other words, I agree with him about socks.
Isn't the smell of burnt toast the warning of a pending seizure? Just a thought.

jadedj said...

Socks? They don't have no stinkin' socks in Florida. I know, I grew up there. Never had a pair until I went away to Michigan. Now and again I would see a pair on tourists...in their Bermudas. Usually they were black...the socks...not the tourists.

jenny_o said...

My comment got sent to Google for sign-in, and then disappeared ...?

If gloves can star in a post (I'm talking about you, Rightie and Stinky), then why not socks? There are so many kinds - footlets, over the knee, slouch, wool/cotton/nylon/bamboo, demure, wildly patterned - if socks are looking for their big break, they've come to the right place :)

Joanna Jenkins said...

I've been having major Blogger issues too and they've changed the way the display word verification that is impossible to read. Maybe Blogger could use some gold toe socks ;-)
Happy weekend, Pearl.
xo jj

StephanieC said...

Okay, I really didn't realize gold toe socks were a real thing.

Sounds Faaaaancy.

I've never heard of the small metal box, Pearl. I've seen the chair (the bosun's chair), and the contractors I've worked with say it is hard to find guys willing to do it.

Just IMAGINE getting off the roof to start the top floor. TERRIFYING.

You are kind to keep your good looks in check. No need to be killing innocent window washers.

I've been on swing stages personally. They are neat, unless it's windy. And the guy that counterweights it at the top is high as a kite. That's problematic.

skoots1mom said...

my hubs wears gold-toed socks still...and some with green stitching in the toe...
wishing you happy feet throughout the weekend!

Raymond Alexander Kukkee said...

I shall remember to wear multi-coloured toe socks when I drive through Minneapolis so I can wave at you, one toe at a time.
Are you sure that was burnt toast? Maybe it was your dessert burning in the microwave as you try to figure out those infernal new captcha words. Have a great weekend ":)

Daisy said...

I love my Snoopy socks ... especially with sandals! :-)

River said...

Florida has a no-socks rule?
Even in their winter?
I love my socks, especially the fluffy ones I wear in place of slippers, until the weather gets too cold, then I pull the slippers on over them. I have many pairs of black socks that I need for work, and just as many patterned socks for weekends. I've never lost a sock, never had an odd-sock basket, I just don't understand how it's possible to lose one sock. You wear two, you take off two, you put two in the washer, hang two on the line. Take them off the line, fold together immediately. TaDa! A PAIR of socks.

Belle said...

I think my socks have parties under the bed at night. I've found a few shot glasses.

Jo-Anne's Rambling said...

I don't own an ipod my girls have asked me if I would like one but to be honest do not know if I would use one............I like my music loud so it wouldn't be good for my ears..........lol

jadedj said...

Belle...they're getting "sockered" under there. Hahahahahaha.

Gigi said...

Seriously @River?! You've never had an odd sock? HOW?!

Every single time I do the laundry at least one gets sucked into a black hole somewhere. At this point it's a miracle we have ANY socks in this house.

sage said...

"Where anything is possible and everything is affordable" Sounds like as good of a definition of utopia as I've heard. Thomas Moore would be proud.

Mr. Charleston said...

I watched Rain Man last night. T's story makes perfect sense to me.

Pat said...

For decades MTl has said 'Socks or underpants,' when asked by his large family what he wants for Christmas and birthday so he has zillions of each - but no Gold Toes.
Ought I to get some? Where?

Sush said...

As a former Southern gal I'm not a fan of socks. Barefootin' was my life for so many a year. Now I'm chain chain chained to the knitted knuts!
Have a lovely weekend~
I won't know about word verification until I hit publish so I can't help right now. I've been wondering if my word verification is turned off...I think I managed to do it a while back but one never knows...

Dawn @Lighten Up! said...

You and I were separated at birth, indeed. The window washers!! I worry about them, lawdy.
Funny stuff, my friend. Only you could get a post out of a phone call about socks. :)

Kleinste Motte said...

When you have visual impairment, pairing socks is an enormous challenge. And when a mistake is discovered days later undoing the whole bunch to rematch is worse. Solution: buy only one brand, size and colour. It's boring but works:)
Not sure paying more would be sensible.

River said...

@gigi; like I said, I wear two socks, one on each foot, I put two socks in the hamper, two socks in the washer, I hang two socks on the line, for every day that I've worn socks. When I take them off the line, I fold them together in their pairs immediately. I don't understand how people lose socks.

Steadfast Ahoy! said...

Socks??? Are they related to shoes? Haven't seen either of them for the past two months. Flip flops mostly, but the ten toes are on holiday and out for everything they can get.

Susan in the Boonies said...

While we're on the topic of things that often go missing their mates, can we talk about tupperware/plastic storage containers?

And while we're thinking about undisciplined T, let's also talk about 14 year old girls who take your Rubbermaid plastic storage containers out of your kitchen to carry their lunch to school, and sometimes only return one half of the container they left the house with.

Have I mentioned I'm down to 5 spoons, from my original 8 that I started my married life with 25 years ago? Three of them walked out the door with the 14 year old.

And she has a devil-may-care gleam in her eye, when she thinks I'm not watching.

She could end up in FL with T.

It could happen.

And together they'll wander barefoot, with nothing in which to store their soup, and nothing with which to slurp it.

But it'll be OK, because in FL, you really don't NEED soup like you do in MN. Or TN.