Saturday, September 15, 2007

Sock Solution Sensation

Nige and I frequently discuss socks, at length and in depth. It is a painful matter, littered with harrowing anecdotes. There were the socks I bought from T.M.Lewin, a nasty shop in Jermyn Street, which fell apart after the first wash and there was the near perfect pair from Issey Miyake, one of which immediately lost itself. Basically, we concluded, socks are never quite right; like academia, they are one of life's great disappointments. But, I can now announce to Nige and the world, the sock problem is solved. I have discovered the Muji 90 degree sock (they don't all have silly stripes, mine are black and grey). Based on the pioneering work of Czechoslovakian grandmothers, these beauties are constructed with an exact right angle. Why nobody previously thought of doing this I cannot imagine since, having studied my legs and feet closely, I have observed that they meet at an angle pretty close to 90 degrees. They slide on like a dream, they stay exactly in place and, so far, they have not lost themselves. At last I can clear my mind of the sock problem and turn my attention to world peace.


  1. Socks, glorious socks. A few years ago we discovered the Johnston's Cashmere sale in Hawick in the Scottish Borders. It's in December every year and it involves getting up at around 4.30 to get there by 6.30 a.m. at the latest to get in the first wave of about 50 people they let in. The tactic is to make a made dash for the cashmere sock section. 5 pairs for £20. Once you've worn cashmere socks life will never ever be the same again!

  2. subtle, Appleyard - as any fool knows, with socks, length and depth are one and the same.

    I can't say much on the subject though I do have fairly articulate ankles (right or wrong angles don't apply). I've gone for buying any colour as long as it is black thus saving time pairing and saving money discarding perfectly sound but odd socks. Always a natural fibre, except for when walking long distances. As with slippers, never buy secondhand or from charity shops..

  3. Ian, please tell us more about your "articulate ankles." What do they talk about? Football? Knee-capping? Achilles? How often must you put your foot down and insist they just shut up and carry on with their job?

  4. Disturbing.

    Bryan, i've decided to write a novel about you. This is the synopsis:

    Yard awakes. Considers breakfast.
    Yard eats breakfast. Wiggles toes.
    Yard opens sock drawer. Many socks to choose from.
    Yard puts on socks. Satisfaction.
    Yard ventures forth. Huge birds fly overheard. Undeterred, Yard gets in sinister black truck of death.
    Middle section: Yard kills a bunch of people for various reasons. Explosions, gun fights, Delta Force etc.
    End: Yard returns to house to find his socks have been messed with. Unhappy, he reflects that life is basically downhill and the most a man can do is decide which pair of socks he most values and wear them all the time. All other socks are liable to be lost.

    The end.

  5. It will sell a million, Elberry, though it lacks romantic interest

  6. Ah but Bryan - these are Jap socks, sized for Tojo's tiny feet, not for the clownsize extremities of the likes of me. With socks there's always something. There is, always...

  7. In the middle section there will be a beautiful Spetsnaz agent who will seduce you in order to steal your socks. There may well be a harrowing nadir to your character's plot arc, where he runs barefoot through the streets of Prague at 0500, pursued by machete-wielding Mexicans. His socks will end up on the feet of Vladimir Putin.

    That chapter will be pretty bleak: the reader will weep and think "I can't bear this, that poor man, losing his socks like that."

    But all will be well: your character will jump on the back of a milk van and slowly make his escape from the Mexicans.

    And there will be other socks. It's actually quite a religious tale, when you think about it.

  8. Ah, I see, makes perfect sense now, Elberry. Go for it.

  9. Nice socks but where can i buy them !

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