On Socks

For whatever reason, socks have been a topic of conversation around our house recently. I wear Solmate socks almost exclusively because, a) they are FUN, and b) they last FOREVER, or five years of constant wearing by my account, whichever comes first. I balked at the expense of them at first, but upon reaching the five year mark before wearing a hole in one, a great big light bulb turned on over my head.

Last year, for Christmas, I bought my husband a set of very good socks (Polo by Ralph Lauren). I was a bit skeptical about the cost, but they were on sale for $21 for 6 pair and it was a gift after all. Steve is very hard on socks. Well, he has only worn through one of those socks. In a year. We are both amazed. And I’m buying him some more shortly, as they have proven their worth to me.

I want things to last and last. Do you know what I mean? My winter parka is now…oh, 10, 12, maybe even 14 years old. It looks almost as good as the day I bought it. I have no reason to replace it, so I won’t. It washes well and is plenty warm.  I have been wearing the same pair of cowboy boots for 23 years or so.  I’ve had them re-soled two or three times and they are still amazingly comfortable.  The shaft is getting some holes in them that don’t look fixable to me, so this may be their last year, and that makes me sad.  If I knew how to do leatherworking, I would probably make new shafts for them and wear them another 23 years.  But maybe it’s time to find a new pair of boots for the next 23 years.

Buying things that last is becoming something of a theme with me. My mixer is a once in a lifetime purchase. I should never have to purchase another one as long as I live. My blender should last another 6 or 7 years, despite heavy use, although if it quit tomorrow, I would have gotten my money’s worth out of it.

I am fifty. I plan to buy one more couch, to last the rest of my life. Spending a little bit more for quality that will last that long is totally worth it to me. I plan to keep my dining room table, chairs and hutch for the rest of my life as well.

Because of this, it offends me that cell phones are both expensive and disposable. It’s crazy to me to spend hundreds of dollars for a phone that I will have to replace in two or three years (maybe, just maybe, I can get four years out of it?)

But…some things have a very limited useful lifespan. That’s okay, but when possible, I don’t want to use throw-away items when a sturdy re-usable option exists.

I have a nice drinking glass at the office to use instead of the plastic disposable cups provided. I often forget to bring a reusable mug with me to Starbucks or when I travel, but I’m working on it. I have real stainless flatware in my drawer at work to use when eating lunch, and at home I use cloth napkins. I don’t go as far as I could…some things seem unsanitary or are too difficult to clean for me to consider them, but the older I get the less comfortable I am with throw-away.

And so, I buy socks that last a really long time.  Which was the point of this rambling post.  I’m wearing them today.  I wore a different pair yesterday and a different pair the day before.  Love, love, love them.

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