Socks Stand the Test of Time

Two of my closest companions are my socks. Perhaps it is bending literary license a bit to humanize them, but what article of clothing – other than underwear – does one have a more intimate relationship with? And nobody wants to know what I might have to say about that subject, except for the creepily curious who wonder for some unfathomable reason whether I choose boxers or briefs. To them I say, it’s nobody else’s business.

I do not mean to offend anyone by pointing out that I spend more time with my socks than with my best friends. It is simply a fact of life. I put on a pair in the morning and they are with me all day long. Seven days a week they go where I go, except to bed. And even then, sometimes on cold nights I am tempted to keep them on so that I might continue to enjoy the cozy comfort they give me all through my waking hours.

Like human companions, socks come in many varieties of color, size and style. They can be businesslike or sporty, flashy or reserved, amusing or dull. Also, as it is with friends, I have my favorites. I try to resist the temptation to wear those too often for fear of wearing them out. Friendships are the same way. Temperance is always a good rule to follow.

Actually, I may be prone to worry too much about losing a particular pair, when I consider that some of my socks have faithfully stood by me – or rather under me – for great lengths of time. Socks have an amazing amount of endurance.

Shoes wear out. Socks seem to last a lifetime.

Even when they have become somewhat threadbare at the heel or toe, socks can continue to be worn because those parts are handily concealed by shoes. Unless, of course, you defy fashion, good taste and common sense and commit the unpardonable act of wearing socks of any kind or longevity with sandals.

Most men, I dare say, give little thought to purchasing socks, beyond whether they are pleasing to the eye, satisfying to the touch and satisfactorily priced. Health experts, however, remind us that wearing the right socks and footgear is essential to proper foot care. They cite studies showing that each person logs an average of 70,000 miles on their feet. Also, feet sweat about 10-15 gallons per foot per year, and about half of that perspiration gets absorbed by socks.

Socks are the workhorses of the male wardrobe and deserve proper respect.

As one who admires and appreciates the service socks render to humanity, I am alarmed by a disturbing trend. Men are starting to go sockless, even with business suits. In a civilized society, bare feet must not be condoned except at the beach or a pool, or on a Norman Rockwell painting of a boy with a fishing pole.