Beware The Sock Imps

I’ve just realized socks are the handiwork of evil. Not big bad eat-your-soul-for-breakfast evil; but something smaller and more mischievous, like imps. Think about it: No other garment causes as much annoyance.

Okay, I know you’re shaking your head and mumbling, “Nuh-uh. There are worse things than socks.”

That’s very true. For example, most women and a large percentage of men believe female undergarments are the contrivances of Satan himself. Women know this because we have to wear them, and any man who’s tried to manipulate the devilish little hooks and clasps one-handed while simultaneously maintaining a suave distraction will surely agree.

But never mind that; we all know women’s underwear is Big Evil. I’m talking about little evil.

Sock evil.

It’s gotta be imps. Why else could you put an even number of socks into the wash but find an odd number after the cycle is complete? Either the imps steal socks out of washer/dryers or else they’re employed in the manufacturing process, knitting every second sock out of some water-soluble substance that looks identical to cotton. Then they weave in a time-delay spell so that only one sock will dissolve per load… each and every time.

That would also explain why, when I’ve bought twenty identical pairs of socks so I can match them up effortlessly, after several washings they don’t match anymore. Some are still white with their elastic crisp and intact while others are as gray and baggy as socks twice their age.

Or maybe imps sneak into my laundry basket and randomly snatch a sock to polish their impmobiles*. Then when the sock is thoroughly grubby they stretch its elastic out of shape and return it to the basket with spiteful little giggles.

And what about the fact that within ten minutes of buying new socks, at least half develop holes in the toes? While I am willing to consider the possibility that I either have freakish sabre-toes or a talent for selecting defective socks (or both), I’d swear that sometimes the holes appear before I’ve even worn the socks. So I can’t rule out the possibility of sock-nibbling imps in my drawers. (Yikes, that sounds both alarming and painful. I meant my dresser drawers.)

Or maybe the socks develop holes because the special dissolving fibres got clumped together in one place instead of being evenly distributed. A defective manufacturing defect, if you will. Imps probably aren’t great at quality control.

I’m pretty sure a misery-inducing spell is woven in during the manufacturing process, too. If you’ve ever worn socks inside winter boots, you know what I mean. Your socks can have elastic tops that rival tourniquets for tightness, but within ten steps the socks begin to creep down. And down. A block later, they’re bunched into a painful wad around your instep.

So you stop and take off the boot, which pulls off the sock, too, so you’re left balancing precariously with your bare-naked foot waving around in the 30-below air. Now you must retrieve the sock from inside the boot, pull on the sock, and reinsert your newly-clad foot in the boot; all without falling into a snowbank.

And regardless of whether you fail or succeed, you know you’ll have to do it again in another block.

Malicious sock imps. They’re the only logical answer.

*Yes, imps own vehicles.  How else can you explain the AMC Gremlin?

42 thoughts on “Beware The Sock Imps

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  4. I’m late posting as usual but had to put my 1/2 cents worth in on this one. I hate socks. It goes beyond hate really, it’s borderline obsessive/compulsive
    destructive manic type behavior. I could barely put up with hosiery, panty hose and the sorts when younger when I was ordered to wear them for work. Sheesh. Stems from childhood and those hand me down socks often gotten at the second hand stores. They never stayed up, constantly pulling down under my heels and when you had to have the, also second hand, high top, butt-ugly, brown shoes, it was horrible. You either stopped everything and undo your shoes, pull up the socks, redo the shoes just to have it all happen again or you just let the darn sock stay bunched up under your heel all day! I won’t even gather or sort my husbands socks. If he wants them he can deal with them. When I hear about a machine “eating” someone’s socks I silently say to myself (you GO machine!) I realize that if I could afford a Shrink he’d probably pay for 2 kids college educations off of me but I figure I’m due at least one bit of madness in my lifetime so why not make it about socks. Bwahahahaha.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha! That’s hilarious! The next time the washing machine eats something, I’ll be thinking of you secretly cheering it on. 🙂

      And I had the butt-ugly brown shoes, too! I’m pretty sure there’s an entire generation that was emotionally scarred for life by those things. Paired with crappy socks, it’s no wonder you’re holding a permanent grudge!


  5. I “used to” buy a dozen pairs of black executive length socks at a time so it was simple to match. As you said, four washings later, some are longer, greyer or whatever and nothing matches. The only solution? Cowboy boots. You can wear matched or mismatched socks with equal aplomb (is that a word?)

    Liked by 2 people

  6. It’s obvious that these imps have a universal code as the exact same problems occur all around the globe. Mostly I wear wool socks as it rarely gets warm enough around here for less so the actual volume of missing socks is incredible! When I cleaned out my dryer (inside the entire cabinet) a few weeks ago there was enough lint to build a couple of pair and enough change for a down payment on a new pair. Maybe i could try felting the lint into something useful like a hat. Unless it smelled like feet when it got wet. That would be bad.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That would be a truly creative use of dryer lint! And theoretically once it’s made it far enough through the cycle to become lint, it should be clean enough not to smell like feet… although it’s probably not reassuring that damp wool socks still smell like wet sheep even after being parted from the sheep for years. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

    • I never liked sock puppets even as a kid. There’s just something creepy about them. Ya know, what if it’s not imps? What if it’s the socks themselves? What it the one that’s left is the evil twin? What if the evil twin is eating the other one? No wonder I have holes in my underwear.



  7. Hey about two weeks ago I lost a pillow case. I kid you not, how does one lose a thing this size. It is a specific case I use for only one pillow. I threw it in washer 100% positive, not stuck to inside, threw everything into dryer. Not hiding anywhere in there, it is no where to be found. Thought it might have stuck inside piece of clothing, went through every single thing I washed. I’m telling you this damn thing is missing.

    I even looked behind dryer thinking maybe when I took them out and out them on top, it went over in back. Not there. I’ve said there is something wrong with this house. All I know is I said to myself, socks disappear, never heard of a big pillow case missing. But it is!

    I stopped wondering because I kept going through stuff. I don’t care where it’s at…..goodbye and good ridden’s. What else can I do?

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I just read your story to my husband. He agrees with you. There are imps a foot. It never seizes to amaze me when doing the wash by months end there are no new white socks anywhere and less black socks than I start out with. I’ve even pinned them together. Oh well, sock imps strike again.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I blame the Boggarts myself, Diane.
    My socks never match and they play havoc with my other smalls as well. Ahem. But yes, I’m sure they hold a single item back in the washing machine after each wash, and then release them all after so many washes to cause confusion. And confused, I easily am…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Same here, Tom! Once I caught the washing machine in the act of devouring one of my particularly small smalls *ahem*. Just a little scrap was still protruding from under the impeller, and I had to perform some mechanical shenanigans to retrieve the item in question. I blame imps for that one, too. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  10. So true! Another thing I’ve noticed is that the more you like a pair of socks, the faster they disintegrate, even if you save them for “good”. If I ever see those imps, I’m gonna sock them …

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Tried the cheapo vs. expensive sock thing. Verified that cheapo socks last longer and stay matched better. Further, at my house, the imps bother the cheapo ones less, too. Expensive socks, and yer just askin’ for it.. 🙂

    And thixty pluth per thent? Theroutht thwellneth herewith, thithter!


  12. We have a swarm of nibbling sick imps at our house. I think I shall call the exterminator.
    I must tell you that about 5 years ago we needed abhor repair to our dryer. The drum had to be removed and guess what was inside the dryer but had been hidden for years and decades by the drum. Yup it was a sock extravaganza in there.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Oh yes, imps for sure. Every now and then I’ll find one of those lost socks tucked inside a sheet or towel I haven’t used in a while, but mostly they disappear for good. It really is a bizarre phenomenon. And as for the holes in the toes (or heel) thing? Once I bought an expensive pair of socks just to see if they’d last longer. Did they? Nope. I swear they got a hole more quickly than my Target socks. So I stick to Target, and I welcome summer when it’s ballet flats and sandals time!


  14. Socks ARE a nightmare, I mentioned one of these very points you have mentioned in one of my recent blog posts – the phenomenon of two socks from the same pair ageing at different rates; I had no idea though it was down to imps! Putting laundry away in general is one of my big dislike chores, it’s just never ending when you have a family, but the pairing of the socks part is definitely the worst. I have a drawer where I keep all the odd socks, and every new washload I try to pair some of those up with the new ones that have just come out of the washing, but invariably I just end up adding more to the odd sock drawer instead. The only time the other sock appears is when I finally decide to throw away some socks from the odd sock drawer, only then does its other half materialise in the very next washload…unless…it’s the imps isn’t it! They take it out of the trash and put it back into the laundry!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. There was a great Gary Larson cartoon of Saturn with the rings comprised of lost/escaped socks, pens, keys, gloves, glasses, luggage etc. I have some expensive newish wool socks waiting in a sad pile to be darned in the toes because I can’t throw them away…..!

    Liked by 1 person

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