christmas stockings ( not )

……” and the stockings were hung on the chimney with beer ” . With cheer ? Shouldn’t it be ” from the mantel ” .

So , I had to look it up , of course , for accuracy’s sake : ” from the mantel with care ” is how Clement Moore wrote the line in 1822 .  St. Nicholas had no reindeer before that . Nor  a sleigh until  Clement M. gave him one .  I had to look up “mantel” , too , by the way . There’s another word ” mantle ” that means a whole different thing . There are  people who know the difference and would be upset that I chose the wrong one . If I did . But I didn’t . (I used resources .) When a reader is irked by a mistake  at the start of the story , the reading experience can only go badly . The reader might stop reading persistently along , having waited impatiently in frustration for a point to the post . I’d rather readers stay to the end and then be disappointed with the pointlessness of it all  .

…..” and visions of sugarplums danced in their heads “.  What are sugarplums ? Doesn’t matter . But I never dreamed of sugarplums , never had visions of sugarplums dancing in my head like the children in the 1820s evidently had .

But , none of this is relevant to my story . Sorry . I got carried away [ To the Czech blogger in London who is discovering and blogging about English idioms and attempting to translate Czech idioms into English : When I say ” carried away ” , I don’t mean that literally . ] I am writing today about an old pair of socks . Literally . Not Christmas socks ;  not stockings hung from my mantel with care , nor , for that matter , from my mantle with care .

Congratulations if you’re still reading this . You must be some kind of an optimist , hoping for the best , for something worthwhile . Good luck to you . We’ll see .

I have a pair of wool socks I bought in 1982 , in east Hollywood , in a little store on Sunset Boulevard run by an acquaintence of mine . I can’t remember his name , although I can picture him . Terry ? Jerry ? It’ll come to me later . Right after I turn this computer off . Ronny ? No , not Ronny .old socks 002

But I remember buying the socks . Jerry-Terry Shopkeeper  was going out of business and had to sell everything . The landlord was selling the place and planned to tear the old building down .  I bought three pairs of heavy woolen socks for seven bucks . I thought it was a good deal .

One of the pairs gave out in the toes after a few years’ [ years’ ?  year’s ?  — tell me ; tell me ! ] wear . I kept it around for awhile anyhow  . I couldn’t make myself toss it out . It had served me well and deserved better . But eventually , finally ,  I trashed it . And then , years later , same thing happened to another pair . Same reluctance to toss that one . But it had to be done . Nothing lasts forever .

I still have the third pair . Good as new ? Not quite , but almost . Well , almost almost . But it’s still hanging in there [ note to Czech blogger —– did you catch that one ?  ] . So I photographed the lone pair , like the Lone Ranger — the last one , the lone survivor .

Ada bought me a nice new , thick , warm , well-made  pair of wool socks this week . I’m wearing them now . They’re cozy warm and wonderful . Will I have them  thirty years from now , though ? Who can tell ?

I’ll tell you the truth . I don’t wear the thirty  year-old pair much these last few years so that they will last another year . Ada doesn’t know that . There’s something  dignified about surviving to old age , even if you just kind of take a back seat .  It’s cool .  Ada would say : ” What are you trying to do , make them last forever ?  They’re old , worn out . There are new ones available to wear . Throw those old things out !  ”  I’d argue a little and whine a little and sulk if I had to .  She’d say : ” If it’s old and it’s vintage , that’s cool . But those old worn out things aren’t cool .”old socks 006

I’ll just hide them in the back of the  drawer for another year .  I’ll let the new wool socks be cool and hang in the front of the drawer . I’ll stuff the old ones  back behind  . With care .

I saw a used car lot in Boulder City , Nevada , advertising ” experienced ” vehicles . My socks are experienced . That’s cool enough ,  I think , but I won’t tell that to Ada .

Oh ! : Perry .

Perry , thanks again for the socks . They lasted longer than you did .  Weird , huh ? I can see you standing in the old shop , laughing . You had a loud joy-filled laugh .

2 Comments

Filed under humor

2 responses to “christmas stockings ( not )

  1. pat

    re year’s/years’: The S in years denotes the plural and possessive, so first it’s plural (years) then possessive (years’.)

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