The matter of socks


You’re looking at something soft, warm and fuzzy and, in this case, seamless – a definite plus, in my book.

They are an unusual colour for me to choose, but that is my fault for not throwing them in my supermarket trolley a few days ago when there was a wider choice – instead of this morning when I popped in to get some laundry soap to wash every single other pair of warm socks I possess.

At just EUR 3.00 (US$4.00, roughly) for the pair —or the cost of a decent coffee in upmarket Berlin—I am hardly going to be caffeine-deprived, and my feet will stay warm while I watch all my other socks spinning around in the dryer.

If you had parents like mine, then you might have been told that one should cut one’s coat according to one’s cloth.  When deciding whether to purchase items of much greater value, I am in the habit of converting the price of the item in question into the number of translated words it represents for me, to keep it real, and remind me where my money comes from.

There are other considerations apart from bad laundry management when it comes to the purchase of socks.

For instance, a few days ago, these socks were not free, and did not suddenly attract the price tag of EUR3.00, or a condition that I should purchase a fresh pair every month for the succeeding twelve. Also, I have a good idea of exactly what I am buying (see label), and a good idea of where my money is going: the supermarket; others in the supply chain, and to the sock manufacturer. Such transparency warms the cockles of my heart – and in the case in question, my feet too.

Then, as always, one has to consider the price versus quality aspect. Will these socks feel right? Are they a good fit? Today, there were also black and grey socks on sale, but not in my size, and I am not going to cramp my toes for the sake of colour matching! Even so, I shall have to stand up and walk about quite a bit in these socks to make sure that they are right for my feet. I do this type of thing mainly while wearing pyjamas.

As you shudder at the thought of me in my warm winter nightwear, remember too, that these socks were subjected to my ethical litmus test. The sock manufacturer is certified by a textile standards body.  This matters to me – I like to wear socks whose bona fides are intact. You might think its strange, but I have an aversion to that horrible little thread in cheap socks that worms its way between my toes. And that, in my experience, is what cheap socks do.

It’s worth choosing one’s socks carefully, I always say. They stand the test of time and many a wash and tumble. And that’s all I have to say on the matter of socks.


©2016 Allison Wright



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