Friday, May 8, 2009

This Pair of Socks Is Brought to You by the Letter D

My dad seems to only wear white socks these days. I'm pretty sure in his younger days he wore colored dress socks, at least when he went to work. I myself wear white socks and black socks almost exclusively, though I do own some tan and a few pairs in various shades of brown. I try to add bleach to my whites, but socks only stay white for so long, until they're relegated to the hobo drawer, suitable only for wearing at home or somewhere where you don't care what you look like, such as the 99¢ Only store (there are some good bargains there, though you have to be careful as the pricing can be deceiving if you don't check and compare the size of the product and other factors). So, periodically, I simply have to buy new white socks. The same goes for my black sock collection as well, though the problem is the opposite; instead of getting darker, as the whites do, the blacks start to gradually fade, their color indicating to anyone who would notice them that they've been around the block a few too many times, until finally they also enter hoboland to join their dirty white cousins.

Sometimes, as we've all experienced, one of a pair will go inexplicably missing, almost surely never to return.

This of course presents a problem if you buy different brands of socks, because it then becomes difficult to find a perfect match for the sock that was left behind.

So, I was visiting and my dad happened to open his sock drawer and out came a pair of socks (white ones, naturally) and I noticed they were marked with a black Sharpie, each of the pair branded with the letter D.

"What's the D stand for?" I asked, until my little light bulb (mine is still incandescent, you hear that, Feds?) went on, and I realized that the D must stand for "dad".

"Nope," said Dad. "I mark all my socks with letters now so I know which ones go together, no more guessing. These happen to be the D pair, but there are also the A, B, C, and so on."

So I'm wondering, does that mean Dad has limited himself to a maximum of 26 pairs of socks? What happens if he accidentally ends up with 27 or more pairs? I know I have more than 26 pairs, and that's not counting all the ones with holes in the toes, the ones that somehow never get thrown out, but just end up pushed to the back of the sock drawer, like an elderly relative that's been shipped off to the old folks home, no longer allowed with the rest of us, a thing we dare not just toss away completely, but that we also can no longer stand the company or sight of. I guess.

The next time I'm at Wal-Mart I've got to get some new socks, white and black. I'm way behind on my sock buying schedule.

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