Socks have a way of sneaking up on me, hiding there under the dust ruffle of my daughter's bed. There's another pair, dirty and inside-out, beside the grass-stained shoes Loula Belle wore to mow the lawn.
I wonder if socks started the game of hide-and-seek. I can almost hear some ancient, befuddled housewife mumbling to herself, "Now where is the match to this sorry black sock?"
If I were a sock, where would I hide?
At the bottom of a sleeping bag that will soon be stuffed and stored until the next camping trip.
Wadded up at the toe of a soggy snow boot.
Tucked under the covers at the foot of the bed.
Hidden in plain sight at the back of the drawer containing clean and sorted socks.
Or, just maybe I'd start a game of Sardines and slide between the wrap-over cushion at the end of the couch. As one end fills with fellow dingy and worn siblings, some would need to hide together at the other end of the couch.
Those sardine socks stayed hidden for years. I only found them when we sold the house. Needing a better grip when moving the couch, I slid my arm into the wrap-over sanctuary. There were almost a dozen socks. Which, by the way, no longer even fit the boy who had hidden them there.
Did the invention of modern laundry methods increase the amount of missing socks? Or did socks go AWOL before the introduction of the electric dryer?
In societies and cultures that wear only sandals, what goes missing instead of socks? Are there even societies that don't wear socks? Are there mothers somewhere who have never even seen a sock?
If such a place exists, I just might consider moving there.