Published May 16, 2010

Today I did a big thing: I threw out all my white tube socks. All of them.

I’m not sure when I decided that white was the way to go, sock-wise. But I remember noticing them back in second grade. That would have been the Thriller era, the height of Michael’s power, when we were all wearing red shirts with black mesh and many-zippered jackets and things like that. Heck, my friend Tyson even had a single silver glove.

All our dads had plain black socks. Maybe sometimes brown or olive. But Michael had white ones. They peeked out from over his patent leather, under his high-water, tight pants: this was the look we all wanted.

Of course, being 7 I didn’t understand that his look was stylish because Michael was stylish. He could take any look and make it hot. Well, Diana from V’s jacket was hot first; but, those white socks? They were square. Not as bad as those thin, tall black dress socks our dads wore, but square nonetheless.

So our white socks were great for everyday and for sports, which was a big bonus. Except, if you’re the average, marginal-on-style white guy of middling size, like me, they just never could look good on you.

So now I got all sorts of thick, comfortable, striped and patterned socks. In bright colors. Because, if you’re a white guy of middling size, you might as well be bright and obnoxious about the ankles. Because there is nothing you can do to be like Michael Jackson circa 1982.