Sockology 101

Professor Shoe:  Good morning, class, and Welcome to Sockology 101, where we shall study our soft-but-sturdy, taken-for-granted tootsie-warmers.  Let’s learn about the exciting lives of those lovable lemmings from the Land of Laundry, socks.

Student: Lemmings? Like the pack of kamikaze rats that jump off cliffs?

Professor Shoe:  That lemmings legend is an Urban Miss.  Lovely little lemmings do not really commit suicide en masse – they are really just displaying misunderstood migration patterns.  Like lemmings, socks move mysteriously.  We accuse the mythical “Sock Monster” of eating them, or wonder if they are casualties of the fabled Sock Wars.  However, when we think we’ve lost a sock in the laundry, it may not be an accident.  It may be on its way to Hosiery Heaven.

Student:  There’s no such thing as Hosiery Heaven!

Professor Shoe:  “Oh ye of little faith!” New research explains the secret lives of socks.  Indeed, a folding footwear conspiracy has been operating covertly for years!

Student:  Right…Just how was this scientific discovery made?

Professor Shoe:  Ahem – we scientists are not proud to admit the conditions under which the data was collected.  All I will tell you is that, when threatened with a pair of pinking shears, even tightly-knit merino wool socks will talk.

Student:  Now you’re telling us tube socks can talk?

Professor Shoe:  But of course!  Talking sock puppets are found in almost every culture!

Student:  And you speak Sock?

Professor Shoe:  Yes.  Listening to laundry is a latent tendency we are all born with.  Little children are naturals – they will say things like, “Oh, sockies, where are you?” until they are laughed at by grown-ups, and further development stops.  However, even as adults, we sometimes slip and say aloud, “What shall I wear today?”  Or if a sock falls out of an overstuffed hamper, we pick it up and say, “Now get back in there, you!”  Clothing whispers, if you listen closely.  Doesn’t it sometimes seemed like an outfit is saying, “Pick me!  Wear me today!”

Student:  So if I heard a sock talk, what would it say?

Professor Shoe:  Something sad, no doubt, like, “A sock’s life sucks!  We are subjected to stinky feet all day long, and people walk all over us!  We suffer so!  When we get washed, we get soaked, sudsed, spun, tumbled, dried, and separated from our loved ones.  All we want is to find our (foot) sole mate!”

Student:  But socks are so sleazy!  You know they never stay in pairs! 

Professor Shoe:  Do not be so quick to judge the sex life of stockings.  It certainly looks like they are in love, snuggling together in the lingerie bag, but it is against their religion to mate for life.  That is why their pairings never last.  They are duty-bound to escape the laundry basket, by whatever means they can.  That is why the left gets lost behind the dryer, or the right gets rolfed by the washing machine agitator and runs away.  A sock’s duty is to escape the wash cycle of abuse.

Student:  I think my socks are suicidal.  I place a perfectly good pair in the washer, and by the time I retrieve them from the dryer, they are full of holes, all pilled up, lost their shape, or have shrunk down to baby socks size.  Then I have to throw them away. 

Professor Shoe:  They want you to get rid of them!  Then socks can escape their sordid lives of servitude.  They can begin their glorious journey of enlightenment.  They will join that big sock hop in the sky, when all the good stockings will be gathered together to find the answer to that existential question, “Who am I?  Why am I here?”  Their purpose in life will soon be satisfied, so they join together happily to await the Coming of their God, Big Foot.

Student:  When the socks will be filled and all shall walk in peace?

Professor Shoe:  Yes.  All sockdom will rejoice, sandals will be banished forever, and no one will suffer the agony of “Popsicle Toes” again.  This, students, is a sock’s vocation.  Blessed be the socks, for they keep our feet warm.  Our fabric footwear shall inherit the earth.

Student:  You are telling me that my smelly gym socks have religion?

Professor Shoe:  But of course.  Be they ever so humble.  You scoff, but haven’t you ever heard of – 

(wait for it)  

Holey socks? 


4 Responses to “Sockology 101”

  1. Lori Says:

    Big Foot. (chortle). This is so true………

  2. jodhiay Says:

    Socks definitely have religion. How else to deal with Athlete’s Foot?

    So sayeth the shepherd, so sayeth the…sock.


  3. Traveller Says:

    this is such fun, now I know what all our socks are doing

  4. sage Says:



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