Erica's Blog

The Try Something New Everyday experiment

Today I’m solving the sock problem

on May 23, 2014

One of my hopes with this blog is to improve the world.

So far, I’ve only offered some humorous ramblings of my life.  Nothing really Noble Peace Prize worthy…

Today though, someone may need to contact the committee…

In my house, socks overwhelm the laundry.

Here’s some scientific statistics about the socks in my house:

They multiply.  Spontaneously.
At least one sock disappears on a weekly basis.  Maybe it’s turned into a dalek, maybe it’s returned to the wild, or eaten by some domestic monster (ex. one of the pups).
If lined up toe to toe and they would wrap the circumference of Saturn 12.47 times.   Really…I’ve measured.


And while I have a copious amount of socks, when I go to find a match, finding a matching pair inevitably eats up at least 5 minutes of my day.

5 minutes!!  Do you know what could be accomplished in 5 minutes?!  I could load the dishwasher (like Jesus on adderall), I could cook a meal, I could win a game of Uno, I could solve a sudoku puzzle, I could knit a scarf, I could cure cancer…well, if I knew how…

Anyhoo, this universal problem MUST be solved!

So in order to conquer such a problem, the solution:
* Should only take one time to match all socks.  Then the pairs must remain married.  Divorce is not an option in sock world!
* Should be easy enough even a caveman can do it…i.e. all household participants will actually participate!
* Once matched, the pairing should be able to withstand the laundry cycle

I put my thinking cap on… (insert Jeopardy music here).  If only there was a way to connect the socks together…something easy to obtain…something cheap…something easy to use.

And then it hit me!!  Clothespins!

Here’s the procedure:

Spend one afternoon…ok, well, weekend, matching up socks.
Instruct sock wearers to remove clothespin before wearing socks.  (This should probably be a given but the scientific method makes NO assumptions…)
When removing socks from wear, reattach clothespin and toss the pairing into the hamper.
Pinned socks will go on a wild water ride and the sauna toss and then will be returned (still matched) to the designated sock drawer.
Repeat procedure as needed.

Easy enough, right?

Today, I located all socks and laundered them.  I’m not messing with hazardous materials or stinky footsie covers!

I ran out to Walmart and purchased 2 bags of old school wooden clothespins ($3).

Next I spent hours…yes, HOURS…several sets of 60 minute intervals…matching socks.  The consoling factors (1) if my plan proves worthy, I should only have to invest this time to this task this one time and (2) I can catch up on some Masterpiece Mystery episodes.

Can I just vent?!  Black socks SUCK!  Matching black socks to their intended party requires close inspection…under bright light…and even then may need DNA fiber testing to determine their proper mates.  Ok, end of rant.


I tested the clothespin procedure by tossing a matched, pinned pair in the wash to ensure the pins would stay in place.  Good news…they do!

So, there you have it.  My solution for the sock conundrum.

I’m not much of a bragger…but I feel like I just solved world peace.

And I’m not one to count my chickens before they hatch…but I will make sure my calendar is free the week of October 10 and I can get travel to Oslo in a moments notice to properly accept the NPP (that’s what we in the peace biz call the prize).



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