My husband has declared that it is horribly unfair that anyone should be subjected to a continual drone of bad economic news and a seemingly endless winter at the same time. As I was helping my daughter blow her nose while I sniffed back congestion of my own, I looked out the window at the blowing snow that obscured the view of the house next door.
“What we need,” I thought, “is a winter stimulus package.”
Later that evening I was helping my daughter get dressed after her bath. “That’s it.” I thought. “The perfect winter stimulus package—socks!”
I had just put a brand new pair of socks on my daughter’s feet, and I could see her delight as she curled her toes into the softness.
There is nothing quite like a new pair of socks. I deliberately do not wash new socks before I wear them, because the feel of unwashed, soft sock-ness on my bare feet is heaven.
My relationship with socks goes back a ways and got its start because my mom used to send care packages of socks to me (and to my husband) on a routine basis.
Not far from where Mom and Dad lived in Georgia was an old textile factory mill with an associated store: “The Sock Shoppe”. (All shops in the South are spelled with two “p’s” and an “e”.) At The Sock Shoppe my mom found the most amazing socks. When I first moved from Georgia to Iowa, she sent me plenty of extra thick and hardy winter socks. Truthfully, the socks were probably more appropriate for life in the Nunavut of Canada, but I wore them thankfully. I snuggled in their softness and luxuriated in the love with which they were sent. Putting on a pair of those socks made the Clipper winds less vicious and the cold less biting. Putting on a pair of those socks at the end of the day and curling up with a cup of hot tea and my two cats was the perfect way to shake the Sioux City winter.
So, here is my winter stimulus plan. Everyone should go buy at least one new pair of socks. If you are really suffering from the harsh blast of reality that Mother Nature sent us with this last snow and wind, perhaps you should consider bulk stimulus: a six- or ten-pack of extra thick socks. If you don’t think you need bulk stimulus, just try one new pair. Perhaps some Saint Patrick’s Day or Easter socks.
Buying socks will stimulate the economy. It’s possible that folks will need bigger shoes to fit over their extra thick socks, and the shoe industry will benefit. Of course all of this sudden demand for socks and shoes will require supply, which will in turn stimulate the transportation, delivery, and textile industry even more.
So, there you have it: a winter stimulus plan. I told my husband about my winter plan. He looked thoughtful and then said, “Just one problem.”
“It requires winter to continue.”
Everybody’s a critic.
© 2009 Michele Arduengo