I pay $40 a month for a security system that tells me if any doors or windows are being opened in my home for would-be thieves or wandering neighbors coming home to the wrong house. It is supposed to protect us from crime and yet, each week, dozens of socks disappear from our home, leaving their mates to pile up in the laundry room. Surely a one footed sock thief must be living amongst us as there is no other explanation for this loss of property.
I've done the math and it simply doesn't add up. Four pairs of socks go into the washer and only three have mates when they come out. I've devised systems to ensure input equals output, but my systems fail somewhere during the cleaning process. Someone thought it would be a good idea for me to safety pin each pair of dirty socks together before I put them in the washer. This person obviously has no appreciation of my time and would prefer mated socks over a home cooked meal or other niceties that take priority on my to-do list. Sock pinning is just below re-grouting the tub and somewhere above clipping the dog's toenails. If I am ever found pinning dirty socks together, I can assure you it is only because I have slipped into madness and am sitting in the dark after the utilities have been cut off and all chaos is breaking out.
My family is well aware of the sock trials we have and has accepted it as normal. My son, who is away at college, was recently introduced to his own dirty laundry. I realize I have failed him because he believes there to be four steps in the washing process. Wash, Dry, Fold, Buy New Socks. He was amazed when he put 18 socks in the washer and 18 came out. He called home to share the wondrous news and I was filled with pride and envy. I had waited for days to hear about the details of his classes and new life and yet, the news that got his attention and sent him running to me with tales of amazement was the fact that the sock product had stayed constant through the entire wash cycle.
While the sock problem continues at home, one would think that I would be smarter than this dilemma and purchase all identical socks, thus greatly increasing the probability of matching pairs. But, there are so many cute socks out there in the world and who can resist a pair of furry red socks or lavender infused cotton footwear. My ten year old child surely must have needed kitty cat socks with whiskers and button nose on the toes as I still have one in my pile of mismatched socks. Until I toss the mountain of socks out and invest in matching socks for all, my output and input will simply never add up. I just don't know where the missing socks go and it will remain a mystery until that day when all parties have taken on their own laundry. I figure a few clean pair of socks is better than no clean pairs of socks and call it a successful day when everyone has on socks that match. There is no time to mine for runaway socks, so those that lose their partner will be cast away where they will wait to be transformed into sock puppets or simply tomorrow's trash.