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Charlie Hatton
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Howdy, friendly reading person!
I'm on a bit of a hiatus right now, but only to work on other projects -- one incredibly exciting example being the newly-released kids' science book series Things That Make You Go Yuck!
If you're a science and/or silliness fan, give it a gander! See you soon!

Sock It to Me

I have a dilemma. I need socks. Athletic socks, to be precise.

For most people, this wouldn’t be an issue. Your average able-bodied sock-requiring person would simply, well, buy socks. For me, it’s a dilemma. A conundrum. My socks are putting me in a pickle.

(And remember, kids — your socks can put you in a pickle, but you can’t put your pickle in a sock.

Or sock your friends’ pickles. Or pick your friends’ noses with your pickle. Or something infinitely less disturbing to think about. I was never so good with the details.)

“I wouldn’t say I’m embroiled in a full-on toe hole epidemic yet, but I’m definitely on orange alert over here.”

Anyway, here’s the situation: I’m rapidly running out of socks. Every day, another sock succumbs to some fatal affliction. Toe holes are a problem, certainly. I wouldn’t say I’m embroiled in a full-on toe hole epidemic yet, but I’m definitely on orange alert over here. Meanwhile, overstretched elastic has claimed its share of victims. When you’re wearing supposedly calf-length socks and find them sagging around your ankles like a couple of used condoms, it’s time for the trash bin.

And then, of course, there are the socks that just disappear. It’s a magic trick performed in households around the world on a weekly basis. An ordinary, everyday pair of socks is placed into the washing machine. Notice the solid construction — no trap doors in the back, and no detergent up my sleeve. Now we wash, we dry, and presto klepto — one of the socks has vanished into thin air! It’s magic, thank you! And now my lovely assistant will regale you with her mesmerizing dryer sheet dance. Magic!

At any rate, I’m running dangerously low on foot sleeves these days. Half the surviving socks don’t have a match, a few are getting pretty ragged, and there’s a suspicious patch of ‘toe wear’ showing on most of the rest. The situation’s getting desperate; if I lose many more, I may have to resort to wearing my wife’s panty hose.

(And I do not have the anatomical profile needed to get into those. There are only so many bits of me that I can ‘tuck’, after all.)

So it’s clearly sock-buying time, and that poses a dilemma. The way I see it, I have three options:

1. Go out and buy socks

Oh sure, it sounds easy.

But where would I go to buy socks? I’ll tell you where — the shopping mall. And I hate — absolutely stinking loathe — shopping at the mall. Especially this close to Christmastime, with the crowding and the shoving and the reindeer poop in the parking lots. And especially for something as boring and mundane as socks.

Honestly. The Victoria’s Secret at the local mall could hold a bra-‘n’-panties sale where you pull the merchandise off of live catalog models, and I’d still probably decide it’s more trouble than it’s worth. How the hell are tube socks supposed to lure me there, in the very height of the yuletide frenzy?

The answer? They can’t. Which brings us to:

2. Buy socks online

This, I could do. I buy all sorts of things online — music, books, Russian mail order brides (as gifts! As gifts!), even internet domain names. Like ‘‘. Or ‘‘.

(I said I probably wouldn’t go, if it existed. I never said the event shouldn’t be captured live on a series of high-resolution webcams.

It’s called ‘being prepared’, people. Catch up on your own time.)

So I’m sure I could find a reputable mens’ legwear vendor on the interweb. I could pick out a style, gauge my size and would have no problem placing an order for all the socks my tootsies could ever need.

Except for this problem, that is: Do I really want to be the sort of person who buys athletic socks online?

That seems an awful lot like one of those lines you can’t uncross later. Like the first ominous step on a slippery slope leading to an unemployed existence selling homemade T-shirts on eBay from my parents’ basement.

(“Dude, whatever happened to Charlie? He always seemed somewhat stable, and not completely incompetent.

He started buying his tube socks off the internet.

Oh dear god. He’s one of ‘them‘ now.“)

I just don’t see coming back from that. Ergo, I can’t go there. I just can’t. Which leaves me with:

3. Strip down and go sockless.

Normally, I’d be all over this option. It requires zero effort, I don’t have to buy anything, and I am completely without a shred of fashion sense, so I could do it with no remorse or embarrassment whatsoever. If being barefoot in my shoes turns out to be the most egregious clothing faux pas I commit from here on out, my wife will be positively giddy with relief. She’s just waiting for me to wear my underpants on the outside of my jeans, or to argue for swimming gear as formal wear.

(I know I’d be happier after a long wedding knowing I could hop right into the hotel pool. I’m just saying, is all.

Either tell our Catholic friends to hurry up those ceremonies, or let me have the swim trunks and water wings in the church. I’m willing to meet you halfway here.)

Clearly, fashion is not an issue for me. But there’s still something keeping me from ‘letting my piggies go’.

I’m in New England. In November. It’s freaking cold. If I stepped one sockless foot outside my house in this frigid nightmare, I wouldn’t feel my toes again until Easter. I’m fine with upsetting Mr. Blackwell and his ilk with my hairy bare hobbit feet, but six months of frostbite is a little further than I’m willing to go right now.

So really, I’m left with no options at all. Except the one I’ve been trying to avoid all along.

When my last stash of wearable socks gives out in a week or two, looks like it’s the missus’ panty hose for me. If ‘toe holes’ are the worst problem I encounter, I’ll be a happy — and sock-footed, and warm-toed — dude.

But there’s going to be a hell of a lot of tucking. And from an awful lot of angles, I’m afraid. I hope we have some duct tape handy. Lord knows I’m not running to the mall for that.

Permalink  |  1 Comment

One Response to “Sock It to Me”

  1. quirkyloon says:

    Wait, you forgot one more option.

    Ask Santa for some new socks. Oh wait, you’d have to go to the mall for that too.


    Send your wife to ask Santa. Yep, that’s the ticket.

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