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Sock News
I am told that a favorite conversational gambit during phone sex is to ask what your paramour is wearing. Personally, I have an unlisted number, but I can imagine that the answer (delivered in a warm, suggestive voice) involves some sort of lightweight underwear. Or a pair of highly impractical PJs. Or perhaps the odd hat.

One article of clothing that would likely never be mentioned, I’ll wager, are socks. Now, we are not talking about stockings here. Stockings are an entirely different matter. So, not garter belts or exotic, shimmering materials or transparency of any kind. One might think that socks, hanging out as they do around the pedal extremities’ erogenous zone, might have some of the hot magic rub off. But no. There is nothing remotely sexual about these humble foot snoods.

At least not to most folks. There are probably some sock fetishists out there who get steamed up over a pair of damp argyles, but those birds are surely rare. Let’s be clear: I am certainly not one.

This is not to say, however, that socks cannot spark joy. I own one pair in particular that still gives me pleasure after years (yes, years!) of use. Indeed, it is a sign of the strength of our relationship that I have blogged about them before, here.

That was over two years ago, and my attachment has only deepened since then. Now, each time I remove them from the washer, they are more diaphanous, more translucent, more vulnerable. That ragged delicacy only makes me cherish them more.

And yes, if you must know, I am wearing them right now.

IN OTHER NEWS: Today I consigned two socks to the dustbin. They were whole and fully serviceable, but both had resided in my sock drawer, unmatched, for months. So, finally, I officially called off the search for their lost partners. Sadly, there is never a possibility for proper closure in these situations. If the body of the missing sock is found, it simply rejoins its partner.

I assume that both were females. A male sock whose mate goes missing will often disappear within days. A widow, however, typically persists long after her partner is gone. I briefly considered joining the two to form a single pair, but immediately thought better of it. Such an act would not only disrespect both hose and their lost mates, it would subject me to ridicule should I be noticed wearing two differently colored socks.

Both of them had served well, but without much distinction. Even so, they were granted a moment of solemn silence before joining the used band aids and spent floss in my waste basket.

DRAWER UPDATE: I should confess here, for the record, that I am still supporting five pairs of socks that I never wear. In spite of their bad fit, or bad color, or bad personalities, I permit them to use up space and psychic energy. My only reason for keeping them is that they do have partners. I sense that this attitude constitutes some form of despicable clothing prejudice, but since I can’t think of what it is, I’ll just have to shrug and move on. My apologies to any garment that may have been offended.
Hurry Up and Wait
So I’m driving along today and moving steadily toward my destination across town. I’m in no hurry, but I am keeping up with traffic and going with the flow. The flow today, in my view, is not fast, but it’s fast enough.

Then I see a car in my rear view mirror. He is not going with the flow. He’s dodging in and out of lanes, seizing even the tiniest chances to lurch forward in the pack. As he goes by me, my suspicions are confirmed. He is a young man, possibly in his early 20s. He is intensely focussed on the road and filled with urgency — the urgency of youth.

Now, it’s possible that he is in the middle of a genuine emergency. Perhaps he’s rushing some life-saving medicine to his grandmother’s bedside. Or racing to stop his girlfriend from joining a convent. Or his winning lottery ticket is about to expire. I guess, though, that he is surging forward like that only because he is young. And he wants to get ahead of everyone. And thereby, in some way, to win. Win what, exactly, I am not sure. But I was there once myself, so I get it.

I am not quite ready to put myself in the category of “elderly gentleman” (much less “codger”), but I cannot say that I am a young man. I am certainly well past the age when roadway competitions against imaginary adversaries hold any meaning for me. As I have said, I was happy today simply to find the current in a river of traffic and ride it peacefully to my intended goal.

Even as I watch the young man move spasmodically forward, however, I am struck by the irony of this tableaux. The young man, who has all the time in the world, is in a desperate, though irrelevant hurry. Unless granny really is on the brink, there is no genuine need for him to rush. Whatever fractions of seconds he trims off his travel time will not be worth this expenditure of energy.

And I, the older man — someone who might arguably have a perfectly good reason to move as quickly as possible — am pleased just to be moving at all.

I do not begrudge him whatever victory he might claim over me and my fellow drivers. I may have once, but no more. Not that I don’t like winning, of course. And not that I wouldn’t mind having a little extra time to get where I’m going. But I’ll pass on all that intense urgency. That stuff is for the young, because they have the time to waste.
A Worry
Is anybody else worried about woodpeckers? Don’t they deserve better than a life spent bashing their heads against tree trunks? Blunt force trauma to the head, every day all day! It's insane...and yet it keeps on doing it! Of course I worry, but sadly, there isn't much I can do about it.
Head First
As I mentioned last May in this space, I am working on a novel. To be more precise, it is a graphic novel. To be even more precise, it is a comic novel.

I’m not sure that a comic novel is even a thing, not up until now, anyway. It may be a bit of a conceit to invent a category of art and then make your brainchild the only entry in it. I’m sorry; I just can’t help myself.

Head First is based on my comic strip, Subconscious Comics. It has been the most challenging and satisfying work I have ever done. I’m now about two-thirds of the way through the art portion of the project. The script was done long ago, but it will undergo fine-tuning right up until the last brushstroke has dried. I will still have the cover and dust jacket designs to make after that, and then the Kickstarter campaign, the printing, and the distribution out into the world.

But right now, I am in the most enjoyable portion of this journey — blue lining, lettering, inking, coloring, and watching my story unfold. I decided to post a chunk of the first page this week on the Subconscious Comics page of timeagan.com. The internet renders it a little fuzzier than an actual page from from the book will be, but I just wanted to give you an idea what it’s like. For me, the word has been “fun".

The old black and white Subcons will return next week, continuing the march backward in time from 2000 to 1981. I’ve just finished with 1983, so next week there will be an episode from 1982 on that page. There will be more previews from the book, but with any luck, by the time I post that very first episode of the strip, the book, 100 pages of full-color, hard-cover comic novel, will be out in the world. Stay tuned.
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Trump supporters are people who know what they believe.
~ JC, Bonny Doon