The scoop on disappearing socks

For years we’ve accepted the fact that if you put socks in the
dryer, sooner or later they’re bound to disappear.
No one knows exactly why this happens. I’ve wasted valuable
years of my life wondering. It really depends on whom you ask. New
age thinkers it has something to do with karma.
For years we’ve accepted the fact that if you put socks in the dryer, sooner or later they’re bound to disappear.

No one knows exactly why this happens. I’ve wasted valuable years of my life wondering. It really depends on whom you ask. New age thinkers it has something to do with karma. Academic minded people attribute it to the law of averages. While, other, more laid back types, chalk it up to it as “just the way things are.”

But my theory is that socks don’t disappear in the dryer, they just go on vacation.

OK, it may sound crazy. But, then how do you explain the tiny blue sock that my friend Barb, a mother of two boys, found inside her shirt the other day at the grocery store?

“I’m not sure how it got there,” she said to me one day over coffee. “All I remember is putting it in the dryer with the other clothes, and the next thing I know it’s in the frozen food section working it’s way out of my shirt.”

Coincidence? I think not.

In fact, my theory is that the minute you set them free, socks trot off to all sorts of new and exotic places. Like, say, to visit with the Legos underneath the sofa or to hang out with Mrs. Butterworth in the kitchen pantry. Or off to the backyard to cavort with the sand toys behind the barbecue.

My friend Linda thought she solved her missing sock problem by buying 16 pairs of the same color sock. That way, she said, if she loses one she just replaces it.

Now this may sound like a good and practical idea, and it is. Except for one tiny problem: now Linda has 32 white tube socks with blue strips roaming somewhere inside her house.

If that’s not freaky enough, the other day my friend Suzie found a green bobby sock with lace fringe sitting by itself in the planter.

“Who’s is this?” she asked.

Her children shrugged. So she recited the names of everyone in the family. Still nothing but blank looks. After 10 more minutes they finally came to the conclusion that no one in the house owned green bobby socks with lace fringe. Clearly, this was a tourist.

Fortunately for my budget, not all socks are this adventuresome. Most of ours are content to rest behind the dryer or inside the lint basket.

However, the final straw came the other day when I found an unfamiliar man’s athletic sock underneath the ottoman tangled up with a pair of pink Barbie tights.

“That’s it,” I heard myself say. “No socks will be put in the dryer unchaperoned. They will be laid on top of the washing machine in plain sight.”

My family nodded at me much in the same way psychiatrists do. But it was the best I could come up with.

And, in a perfect world, this would’ve been the end of it. But we all know that this isn’t a perfect world. The truth of the matter is that there’s nothing much you can do to prevent socks from disappearing.

The good news is that just when you’re sick of constantly hunting them down, summer will be come along and you won’t have to worry about wearing them anymore. If you’re lucky, you can get by for at least three months in sandals.

But, to the surprise of no one, sooner or later you’ll have to buy more.

Socks have better things to do than to just hang waiting for you, you know.

Leave your comments