TODAY -

The case of the missing socks

Samarjit Kambam *



The world has a lot to do with 'pairs'. There are living pairs and non-living pairs. Without the entity called 'pair', the world's scenario would have been quite different. A pair of doves, a pair of pigeons, a pair of eagles, a pair of swans etc., are examples of living pairs. When it comes to humans, a couple is an example of a living pair a man and a woman. Ironically, in this contemporary world, human pairs are not restricted to men and women alone for there are gay couples, lesbian couples, transgender couples, homosexual couples et al.

Again, we are brought up amongst a host of non living pairs. Mention may be made of a pair of trousers, a pair of glasses, a pair of socks, a pair of shoes, a pair of scissors etc. Such pairs are part and parcel of our lives. A pair of trousers may get lost, one side of a pair of glass may get broken but the frame may remain intact.

But have you ever heard of one side of a pair of trousers getting lost? Has that ever happened to you? If you do, then you definitely must not be from this planet. It would be a living sample of insanity if we put on a pair of shoes with different colours or wearing one shoe and one barefooted. During a fashion show, you can wear a pair of trousers with each side having different colours. But it is hard to imagine and would look ridiculous and totally out of place wearing only one side of a trouser, baring the other leg at a fashion show ramp not to mention going out at public places.

Again, a pair becomes expendable. You throw away your shoes when it gets torn, shredded and unfit for use. You throw away your pair of trousers or give it away to someone else in need when it gets too old or when you don't feel like wearing it anymore. You can change you pair of glasses into a more updated and stylish one. But it really comes as a shock to learn that humans have become sort of expendable or dispensable items.

As they say, "Marriage is the beginning of divorce", many, most particularly in western countries break their bond of 'pair-ship' by filing for and getting divorced after two or three years of marriage. Mention may be made of the evergreen Hollywood celebrity Tom Cruise who divorced the breathtakingly beautiful Nicole Kidman, the Australian heartthrob and Hollywood celebrity actress stating irreconcilable differences, Brad Pitt doing away with Jennifer Aniston and becoming a part of Bradgelina with Angelina Jolie, considered one of the most beautiful woman in the world. Demi Moore dumping hunk Bruce Willis and marrying Ashton Ketcher, again divorced and has been dating Thomas Jame, Martin Henderson, Harry Morton and is now dating Sean Friday.

Kate Winslet was going through a firework of break-ups and going for a series of newbies. Her third marriage is to her third husband by the name of Ned RocknRoll and God know how many she has been dating others. In our home front, beginning from old timers such as Dharmendra, we have Saif Ali Khan bidding adieu to Amrita Singh and taking Kareena Kapoor as his newlywed. Then, we have Amir Khan also and veteran cricketer Md Azharuddin among the club. There are many many more. The list is almost endless.

My wife and myself make a couple for we are a pair, no doubt about that. She's my better half, but she's a part of a pair that's more than enough for me. Besides loss of individuality and freedom she acts as if I was given birth by her. Entering marital life is a hellish experience, although many pretend that its blissful. I really wonder how some men manage to have two-three wives when one is more than enough torture for me.

But there are some things in life which you can't simply separate from the pair, lifeless and expendable though they are. Course, as mentioned, there are pair of trousers, pair of shoes, pair of glasses etc. But one of the most paramount one is a "pair of socks". Socks collect dirt fast and emit foul smell, albeit the smell is from your own feet. A pair of socks of a person with smelly feet can drive the people in the room nuts and act as human repellant once he takes out his shoes. Still then, a pair of socks plays a very important role in our lives.

My feet are not smelly, however, I use to keep many pairs of socks as I change a fresh pair every day or two. Firstly, I used to put my pair of shoes inside a red plastic basket. Then my small creature (who else would it be except my dumb and dumber daughter) who leaves a trail of chaos and destruction wherever she goes used to create havoc by putting her different varieties of clothing and paraphernalia ranging from combs, hankies, ribbons, nail cutters, toys, pencil sharpeners, hair clips, water bottles, unwashed cups and the likes even though I kept separate baskets, cloth hangers and almirah for her. Whenever she pillage the basket, my socks went missing. If pairs got missing, its OK for me.

But what drove me nuts was that whenever I was in a hurry for work and was about to put on my socks, I would always find a 'divorced' sock, separated from its pair. It went on for many months or maybe years. Sometimes I had to go to my workplace without putting on any socks. There were many occasions where I had to wear hard to notice socks of different colours when it got darker.

Fed up and pissed off with the turn of events, I adopted a different system. I bought new pairs of socks, and honestly speaking, I also bought a bulk of second hand socks also as their quality is higher and they hardly emit any odour. Then I tied each pair on a long rod high above so that my small devilish creature can't reach. There were more than 30 pairs of socks arranged neatly.

"Problem solved", I thought. Then, the big creature, my wife, created havoc again. Whenever she dropped socks in the washing machine, they were in pairs, but when taken out and dried, only 'divorced' and single kinds of socks would be found. I would ask her roughly, "What the hell's going on? Where are the remaining socks?". She replied that she also had no idea.

I looked inside the washing machine whether there were any holes in the drier compartment but there was none. If there were, would a washing machine have partiality by sucking out only chosen ones, separating from its pair? Nay, impossible. Now, there are many single unpaired socks tied in a neat row at the bar which are basically useless. Sometimes, I wonder whether some paranormal activities are going on in my house or whether I have invoked the wrath of "God of Socks".

The case of the missing socks still remains unsolved, a mystery, an uncracked case. Now I am at my wit's end. I have no option left than hiring a private detective to solve the case of my missing socks.


* M Ajrun Kabir wrote this article for The Sangai Express
This article was webcasted on July 05, 2016.



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