I have a sort of love/hate relationship with socks. I’m a big believer in foot freedom and given the choice, I would rather go about my day with nothing on my feet at all. If I’m not going barefoot I’m wearing a really old, worn in pair of pinkish slippers. What I do love about socks though is how colorful and quirky they can be. I have holiday themed socks, fuzzy socks, striped socks, and outrageous prints that don’t really match anything. I wouldn’t say that I’m someone who takes risks with their visible wardrobe so it’s kind of fun to look down and see something unique.
I was looking down at my feet today while waiting for my train to move after a delay had just been announced. In my boots I could see the lime green trim on my socks. They were ankle socks, and to anyone else I was just another girl on the train with seemingly normal clothes. But I knew something they didn’t. I knew that I was wearing tie-dye socks with yellow, pinks, and greens. I knew that these socks said something about me even though they were tucked away in my boots. It was like having a little secret all to myself.
In general, I think that socks can say a lot about you. That’s why I always like when I see grown men in suits sit down and their pants ride up enough to show off their funky choices in sock wear. It breaks up the corporate persona. They look like regular businessmen who are serious but then you get a flash of a personality underneath the pin stripes. After admiring my own socks I took a glance at the other people sharing the train car with me. No outfits stood out, nothing that gave me a real insight into who they are, or what they might be doing.
It made me think that other people might have their own colorful socks hidden in their shoes, and then I started to picture an almost Clark Kent/Super Hero reveal. Where everyone would remove their shoes, or open their shirt to reveal something with a little more color. Their own little secrets that would brighten up this otherwise boring commute. Then I imagined it a step further.
What if instead of our socks, or secret undershirts we all had to wear something that spelled out a fact about ourselves. A fact, or a secret that would be shown to the world. A highly personal game which would probably leave you in your most vulnerable state. Would knowing a personal detail make you more understanding? More compassionate? Or would we all shrink away from each other in judgment.
I like to think weird things like that have the potential to bring us together. The discovery of colorful socks, or when you’re just close enough hear someone else’s music, and it’s nothing like you imagined. I like to think that people have a way of telling the world something about themselves without having to say a thing.