"He Doesn't Want Socks for Christmas"... or Does He?

Peter B. GiblettStarred Page By Peter B. Giblett, 4th Nov 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/34__ff3y/
Posted in Wikinut>Family>Daily Life

A sock is so simple what can go wrong when buying a pair for a male relative or dear friend? Most people believe that buying socks is merely a thoughtless gift, but is it? Indeed there can be a great deal of thought regarding the purchase of the sock, let us consider the humble sock.

Christmas

With Christmas here, there and everywhere, it is the advertisers dream time of year - time to beat us all into a buying frenzy. and the days wind us down both through the month of November and December we ready ourselves with every little detail. Then late in your preparations you realise that Uncle Albert is coming and you have no gift for him.

This is where the trip to the store for socks happens and it is always socks because that is the easiest thing to get him and besides which everybody in the family understands that all Uncle Albert will do is give everyone that toothless smile and nod with a grin, that says "You care! Excellent! You care!"

Yet, the truth is that BUYING SOCKS is not a simple matter of picking up the first fancy pair that you lay your eyes upon.

There are some things that must be considered:

  • The size of the wearer's feet
  • The shape of their feet
  • Corns and bunions

Also there are certain socks that are good for summer and others that are good for winter.

Size of Feet

Let us start with the size of feet. This is a big challenge because you have a certain size of feet you will fit in right between the large men's and small men's sizes and their are only two sizes ever sold. To purchase the larger size often means the sock is uncomfortable (because it was actually made for someone wearing a size 12 shoe). The best fitting pair of socks is always those where your size is towards the upper end of the size range, this way they are more likely to feel comfortable and fit without having extra material to worry about.

Trouble is median sizes for male feet have changed over time and when Uncle Albert was young he was mid sized, but now he is older he is in the smaller size range and guess what your local bargain store does not stock smaller sizes.

Think about how uncomfortable socks are if they are too large, remember back to your childhood when your parents gave you clothes that you grew into and how uncomfortable that was - now think of the humble sock and you can see the point of this monologue. Size is so important, yet shops fail to understand this.

Shape of Feet

The shape of your feet is also vital. Think about this for a moment most socks are essentially square ended - the length of material from the heel to the end of the big-toe side of the sock is the same as for the small-toe side. Not very sensible.

Also this fails to take into consideration that Uncle Albert has a great friend George, who he tells stories about every Christmas eve and George has the ugliest feet on the planet - he has both corns and bunions and even a sixth toe on his left foot. We are never sure whether George really exists or is simply a figment os Uncle Albert's imagination but one thing we do know is that he has the ugliest feet on planet Earth and we are simply glad not to be buying socks for him, but of course we know that somewhere there is a family facing that very problem.

Left Foot Right Foot

Many years ago I discovered a pair of left and right socks from a German company called Falke, these remain the most comfortable socks that I have ever worn. Now it turns out that Falke have been making quality socks in Schmallenberg, Germany since 1895 and today the company is still run by the Falke family and in making socks they take three things into account:

  • Anatomy,
  • Climate, and
  • Support needed.

Wow! A company who understands the needs of feet. But in trying to replace a good pair of socks I find that it is not possible to purchase their socks here in Canada (even on-line), but also other male sock suppliers do not make socks for left and right feet.

My wife recently bought several pairs of socks that were made for left and right feet. She says that they are the best fitting socks that she has ever had, I completely understand because material moulds around the toe, but of course socks do need to be replaced.

Cold & Warm

I also talked about climate and this lends itself to another pair of socks I once bought. These are made with something called "Cotton Fresh Feet Silver Technology", which is sold by retailer Marks and Spencer in the UK. Now these socks provide warmth in the winter (even for severe Canadian winters) and cool in the summer and are especially relevant for the Mediterranean summers we experience here in Southern Ontario.

However these particular socks - eventhough they are comfortable to wear do not come in left and right varieties. If they did they would be pretty close to being the perfect sock.

So what are you going to buy Uncle Albert?

Uncle Albert will be with you on the festive day and what are you going to get him?

You now understand a little more about the challenges of the gift of a sock and the challenges the feet provide the average bargain store, truth is socks do not last forever, but we always have fond memories of a good, well fitting, pair. This is not such an easy purchase, there is much to consider.

Image Credits

The images for this article are courtesy of the following:

  • Christmas Bells paper by Peter Giblett
  • Christmas Themed socks (from John Lewis)
  • Carrot foot by Newslite.tv
  • Left and right socks by Delic Australia
  • Wooly socks by workingperson.com
  • Uncle Albert by Del Boy (Daily Mail)

A little gift for you

The following are some of the more recent articles that Peter Giblett has published:

Each person has a unique voice and Wikinut is great a place for you to share some of your wisdom, insight and knowledge, you could start by adding a comment, but perhaps you need something more in which case should join Wikinut, write then become connected to others who share a passion for writing, supporting one another, and learning on Wikinut.

Tags

Christmas, Falke, Falke Germany, Fresh Feet Silver Technology, Giving Socks, Left And Right Socks, Left Sock, Right Sock, Socks For Christmas, Uncle Albert

Meet the author

author avatar Peter B. Giblett
Author of "Is your Business Ready? For the Social Media Revolution"

Social media consultant, with C-Level background.

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Comments

author avatar Retired
4th Nov 2014 (#)

Move over Uncle Albert, my husband is the fussiest sock wearer in the universe! I wouldn't DARE buy socks for him or anybody's Uncle Albert ever, but I read through your delightful article to know what to look for if I did.

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
4th Nov 2014 (#)

So your husband and I would enjoy sock shopping together I think.

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author avatar Shamarie
4th Nov 2014 (#)

Nice!!! I enjoyed reading this article, Peter! Thanks for sharing!

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
4th Nov 2014 (#)

Thank you Shamarie and have a good holiday season.

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author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
4th Nov 2014 (#)

My feet get cold and achy in winter. Alpaca wool socks are very good for cold feet, but they are not cheap!

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
4th Nov 2014 (#)

I am sure they do the job, Mark, but my allergy to wool stops me trying them.

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author avatar snerfu
4th Nov 2014 (#)

My neighbor's son is planning on a bucket of water over the door for Uncle Albert. However, he may need help getting the bucket up. Happy Christmas in advance.

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author avatar viewgreen
4th Nov 2014 (#)

Interesting article... Thank you for sharing this.

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author avatar Retired
4th Nov 2014 (#)

I have absolutely no problem about getting socks for Christmas! Ties, on the other hand, are another matter - I've haven't worn one for years, but I always need to wear socks!

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
4th Nov 2014 (#)

Thank you John.

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author avatar Ptrikha
4th Nov 2014 (#)

Amazing! I never gave such a close thought to socks. I mostly buy socks in offers- 3 for INR 200, or 5 for INR 300 from departmental stores like Big Bazaar here, and occasionally from other stores.

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
4th Nov 2014 (#)

There is nothing wrong with buying them as offers - that is what I normally do, but the thing is they have to be the right ones in the first place.

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author avatar Joyce Singha
4th Nov 2014 (#)

Nice post Peter. If I had my way, I would buy socks for everyone, each year for Christmas and otherwise. Thanks for the info on Falke.

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
4th Nov 2014 (#)

It is always good to have a good pair at Christmas, in my wife's family their tradition is to give clothing on special days (even to children).

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author avatar NBL Books
4th Nov 2014 (#)

My husband would say, no socks and underwear please, he just likes toys, not children's toys, but things he can enjoy himself with such as binoculars, things he can cook with, he is a chef and has a whole list on his wish list of cook ware that he would like, that is his toys. No SOCKS PLEASE!!!! :)

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author avatar Laura Murray
5th Nov 2014 (#)

My husband's feet are very...special (due to genetics and his work). When we finally found socks that he likes and help his feet, they were pretty expensive. So when he got them for his birthday, he was ECSTATIC! It's one of the best presents I've ever given him. It was quite amusing to see that others have had similar experiences!

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
5th Nov 2014 (#)

Laura, who would have thought the humble sock to be so important?

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author avatar tafmona
8th Nov 2014 (#)

this is a good post

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author avatar Bodylevive
18th Nov 2014 (#)

For my husband, I have a bag of assortments, from shaving stuff to cologne and yes--socks are included.

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