There are two kinds of people in this world; people who pair their socks together and people who let their socks roam free in the drawer. There is also an unusual sub-group of folks who safety pin their socks together before putting them in the washing machine (nerd alert!) but that’s a discussion for another time.
Me? I fall into the non-pairing, free-roaming sock drawer camp. I like to think my socks throw little mixer parties while I am not around–the pantyhose play saxophone while the flannel gray trouser stockings dance the merengue. Pleasant thought. But it only disguises my true hatred: pairing socks.
My housewife skills leave a lot to be desired in the cleaning and cooking departments, but if there is one thing I won’t do, it would be pairing socks.
I hate it.
Many moons ago, my ex and I celebrated our first anniversary.
He gave me jewelry. I gave him fifty pairs of black socks.
Why? He asked.
With delight, I told him, Because I’m tired of pairing your bastard socks together. Now we can throw out your mismatched pairs and you can have one giant drawer of the same type of sock. No matching necessary! See, this way you’ll never have to wake up in the morning and rifle through your drawers yelling WHERE THE HELL IS MY OTHER NAVY BLUE SOCK WITH YELLOW TOE STITCHING because now it’s all the same. Genius right? No need to thank me.
Somewhere in the world, a family therapist is reading this while condescendingly shaking their head.
Nine years later, when we were splitting up possessions, in the middle of a heated argument, right after I threw a crockpot out the window –and no I’m not kidding, and yes it was full of chili– he told me our relationship was doomed because he resented me twice a day, every day for nine years; once in the morning when the socks went on, and once at night when the socks came off. He hated the way the black socks looked, he hated the way they felt, and hated me for forcing him to dispose of his old sock drawer.
Should I have left his sock drawer alone?
Should I have never forced him to wear socks he didn’t like?
Should I have been less lazy and paired his socks together for him?
Answer: I should have let the man do his own damn laundry.
So when I moved out of our home and into this apartment, where I truly started living on my own for the first time in my life, what was the first thing I bought?
Fifty pairs of black socks.
And I love the shit out of them.