Sunday, December 27, 2015

Culling

Grandma buys me socks for Christmas.

Just a package of socks, nothing fancy. Not dress socks, not those rainbow toe socks I love so much. She gets me plain old white vanilla tube socks every year without fail.

I open them. I thank her. We drive home from Grandma’s and then, while the kids are off playing with their brand new toys, the Annual Culling of the Socks begins.

My sock drawer is full. It barely closes. Six new pairs – twelve new tube socks! – is just too much. When the culling happens, all inferior socks are thrown away to make room for the superior bright new ones.

I sort them into piles.

It goes like this:

“Torn…”

“Torn…”

“Faded… good… good… Rachel’s… torn… ugly… Rachel’s… Rachel’s... good.”

“Stained… Dana’s… mitten… good… good.”

“Good… receipt… receipt… Rachel’s… Rachel’s… torn.”

“Aesop’s… torn… lighter… pipe… Rachel’s... Rachel’s… good… Rachel’s… torn.”

And when the culling is complete, my sock drawer is once again all socks, all mine, and all ready to go for another year.

Thank you, Grandma!

62 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. And under 200 words, for the first time ever!

      I'm getting so sentimental and concise in my old age...

      Delete
  2. It's kind of amazing how complicated socks get. Seems like it should be simple, but it's not.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It seems so simple and then, one day, you realize you're wearing one white ankle sock and one long blue sock, inside out.

      That might not happen to everyone, actually. But be careful. It can happen. More than once.

      Delete
  3. And when do you wear any of these socks? You strike me as a sneakers on bare feet kind of girl, but even if you did wear them, how can you possibly wear through so many in a year?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I run. I have to have socks on when I run.

      I don't know, though - they just sort of accumulate. They're like rabbits that way, I guess. I start off with two and things just happen.

      Delete
  4. A Public Service Announcement from

    L.O.S.S.
    Laundered and Orphaned Sock Society

    Through L.O.S.S., socks who have felt unappreciated and mistreated finally have a voice to make us aware of their grievances: over drying, load abandonment, ironing, and sock puppetry, to name just a few.

    "Even old socks have an important role to play in your everyday life. One should never abandon a sock to the trash heap" - #SockLivesMatter

    ReplyDelete
  5. The most depressing time is when you no longer get the socks for Christmas.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Absolutely. I lost my parents when I was young. I try and appreciate family when I can. Socks are good.

      Delete
    2. Agreed, my grandmother passed away about four years ago and my mom had a stroke two years ago and doesn't even realize when Christmas is, until I give her the gifts I got her. So many good memories from opening what at the time was just socks.

      Delete
    3. I try not to think about how everything is going to end badly, eventually.

      Seriously. The people still alive at the end of the monster movie? They end up dying, too.

      Delete
  6. Socks are a good thing. They protect your feet. Your feet keep your legs from fraying at the ends. I like socks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nothing worse than frayed feet.

      Well, except my feet. Fraying would definitely be a positive change...

      Delete
  7. The only problem with white socks is that they are so hard to match.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have an even tougher time with dark socks. I'll be sitting there in the middle of the day at work, hold my feet together, and realize that one is sort of blue and the other one is sort of gray.

      Delete
    2. Navy's and Blaks are my downfall. Fortunately I can hide them with my pants. After that I don't really care.

      Delete
    3. It's not your fault. There are some lights where it's just not possible to tell those shades apart from one anorther. I have to check them out under multiple kinds of light sometimes to tell.

      Delete
  8. Totally unrelated to this post but you are so pretty. You can pull off white tube socks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Sandra! Hope your new year goes great!

      Delete
  9. Sooooo, what enters my mind immediately after reading your post? https://youtu.be/OpXP8abAv_w

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    Replies
    1. That's the song that Nixon tried to deliver the line from on a later episode, right?

      Delete
    2. Woohoo! Pop culture reference points for me!

      Delete
  10. I admire socks. Underwear gets all the credit for having a hard job as clothing, but socks are the real heroes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Whatever I can do to raise their statute.

      Besides, doing a blog on underwear would be too obvious!

      Delete
  11. Katy. I'm a sock hoarder. I have a sock drawer, a sock box in the closet and a sock overflow box out to the shed. I inspect each clean sock before I put it on, looking for wear, snags and those lint balls that get inside cotton socks.

    If they appear worn almost to the threads, I move them to the closet box and pick another. Having said all of this, I'm headed to the shelter with two file boxes loaded with clean socks. Got two pair of shoes, a jacket, a few dozen pairs of undies and some shirts to deliver as well.

    Thanks for the jump-start. And Fuck Walmart in the fullest of holiday cheer!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That sounds complicated. Did you move those socks with you from Texas?

      My grandmother lived in a different state for a while. When she moved back, she still had a big box of receipts for things reaching back to the Sixties. Just in case she had to prove she paid for something, I guess. Well worth the cost of moving them. Twice.

      Delete
  12. It's amazing how the socks you own seem perfectly fine, until you introduce a group of bright white new socks, and then it just looks like a drawerful of sadness and lies. Out with the pilled, the worn, the dingy! In with the new! Your grandma has mastered the circle of life. Respect.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am standing at the top of a cliff, holding up my new packaga of socks while Elton John plays in the background!

      Delete
  13. My socks cull themselves. They unravel and retreat from my big toe, then on to their final resting place. Is it safe to say that you use your sock drawer as a a way station for some life detritus?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lots of flotsam and jetsam, yes.

      Mostly what i learned, though, was that I apparently have a lot of trouble telling my socks from Rachel's after I do washing.

      Delete
  14. It's good to have a constant, a touchstone, like knowing what Grandma'll get you for Christmas. Grandma sounds like a rock, someone on whom you can rely. Good.

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    Replies
    1. That's true. The problem with constants like that is they seem lilke background noise until they're gone.

      Delete
    2. Nice observation - also true

      Delete
  15. When I was a little kid, my grandma gave me $2 every year for Christmas. While my other friends were getting socks, I was laughing at them, saying HA! I got two whole dollars. Then I started to get older, and she kept giving me that same $2, because grandmas don't understand inflation. Somewhere there was a shift in value, and now I wish I got socks. I'm envious. I mean, I just got another $2 and I don't even know what I can get with that anymore... a half-assed car wash?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey, I'm sitting here without any caffeine this morning, and I could really use that $2 for a 20 oz Coke.

      Delete
  16. Beer ,
    Pass it on to a kid that will enjoy it .

    Glenn

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your beer was passed appropriately.

      No one enjoys one more than me.

      Delete
  17. Socks
    I use to get care packages from Mom every Xmas. The gift with socks in it. I dont mind getting my own sock. I like getting out shopping and the experience of picking them out, but it's interesting to think someone took the time to get and give them when I get them.
    When socks get old I put the holey ones in the cupboard above the washing machine. But ust the cotton ones. If they're nylon they go in the garbage. I like giving them one final use, like wiping something up on the floor, then enjoy throwing them out for the garbage they are.
    I use to like my super socks. You know the light thin nylon ones for running. The ones that have the designation for which foot they should on. I'm not running much anymore and they're just taking up space, but not so much yet. They're not prone to getting holes, so they're stuck hiding in the shadows at the back of their drawer. They're not so super anymore. They are just socks, all of them; just socks. I don't go shopping to get other people socks for presents, I just give cash. People can get their own socks if that's what they want.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Alright... enough of this silence.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I'm sending a search party, Katy.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Hello Hello Hello is there anybody in there?
    Just nod if you can hear me...
    Is there anyone home?

    We remember when you used to be fun to visit. Now there's crime scene tape over the porch entrance and mail piled up outside the mailbox... and an odd scent coming from inside.

    Who's feeding the cats and spiders?

    What if this was Ed McMahon and he was holding your Publisher's Clearing House check?

    sigh...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm alive. Considering a return. I hear it's 2016 now!

      Delete
    2. Making people beg is unbecoming.

      Delete
  21. HEY KATY! Remember those big bug eyed ants with little Skitch Henderson beards I told you about in my dreams???? Lookit!
    https://4.bp.blogspot.com/-5GOEFEKp_F8/Vul19dln08I/AAAAAAAA1B4/c7RzUQyuIDETL-zXKtimMhyv2bZ_X29mw/s1600/tumblr_mot1ru8uPX1qedb29o1_500.gif

    https://4.bp.blogspot.com/-5GOEFEKp_F8/Vul19dln08I/AAAAAAAA1B4/c7RzUQyuIDETL-zXKtimMhyv2bZ_X29mw/s1600/tumblr_mot1ru8uPX1qedb29o1_500.gif

    couldn't have been a Zone ... HAD to be a Limits. huh?

    ReplyDelete
  22. What if there was someone out there who desperately wanted to read of your latest exploits?

    What if that person checked in on your blog every damn day to see if you were back at it... only to find (cricket... cricket...) no one home?

    What if they were on the ledge, flipping the proverbial coin, deciding whether or not to slip over the edge, and then thought, "Hey, I'll check one last time..." ???

    Not that anyone is THAT desperate. But damn.

    C'mon back.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Some of us have abandonment issues. You aren't helping.

    ReplyDelete
  24. I thought to myself, "Katy will post something for April Fool's day, just to mess us up."

    ReplyDelete
  25. I do hope your sabbatical is taking place on high ground somewhere less moist than Houston.

    "Is there someone else up there we can talk to?"

    ReplyDelete
  26. Hi Katy! I hope all is well.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Some of us miss your blog more than others. Apparently.

    ReplyDelete
  28. I'll add my voice to the chorus. I miss your blog too. Hope all is well.

    ReplyDelete
  29. I think you should come back to the car lot.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Just so you know, my next nom de plume will be that of a conservative Christian right wing Republican straight white American male. Todd... or something like that.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Did I leave my phone here? I had it with me last time we talked...

    ReplyDelete
  32. Found it! But hey, thanks for helping me look for the phone.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Between you and Trump, who is the bigger asshole? Hmm, hard to tell .....

    ReplyDelete
  34. Rush says Obama wants to give money to lesbians so they'll buy rural farms and take back the heartland. I thought you'd want to know. Might be free phones in the deal, never know... I'm working on a rewrite to the lyrics from "Green Acres"... "legs spreadin' out so far and wide..."

    ReplyDelete
  35. Remember when friends used to drop by with comments? Yeah. Good times.

    ReplyDelete

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