Saturday, April 9, 2011

The sock drawer

While waiting for the result of my tongue biopsy, I cleaned out my sock drawer.

I realized that if anything happened to me, someone would have to empty out my sock drawer, and they would decide I was crazy along the lines of a cat lady, or perhaps that I was a lower-level version of Imelda Marcos and her shoes. (My collection of shoes and sneakers is another matter.)

Plus, spring was in the air, and I was carried along by the urge to start de-cluttering somewhere.

I dumped the over-stuffed sock drawer on the floor, studied the colorful collection, and walked away.

The biopsy results are still inconclusive, and the other day I dumped out the contents of the other sock drawers. These are in a small chest meant to hold various things and not really intended to be crammed with socks. I had kind of forgotten that they were all full.

I had a system: Socks in pairs in the main dresser, and singles in the small chest. I planned to every now and then dump out the singles and find pairs. I forgot to do that and kept buying socks and then pondering the old question, "Where do all socks go?"

More grounds for any clean-up crew to label me the crazy sock lady.

At this point I had to take action. I actually found many matches, realizing that a partial answer to the disappearing socks riddle was that they had disappeared into my own bedroom.

I discarded worn-out socks and singles and made a giveaway bag for socks in fine condition but ones that I would never wear. A handful of singles was so nice that I couldn't toss them. I doubt that they will ever find their mates, but I returned them to the singles drawer. Hope springs eternal.

Finding this a good distraction from worrying about the biopsy results (and also an activity that gave rewarding results), I eyed my closet floor, where I had piled my race and tennis T-shirts. Not too long ago, I had removed them from my overstuffed drawers and stacked them with some giveaway shirts on the floor, making it difficult for me to get at the clothes in the closet.

I wear some of the shirts, but most are just plain too big. I don't know why I got so many larges; either I was bigger then or I just liked them baggier. Many are from years of running the Saint Patrick's Road Race and are varying shades of green; I associate them with different years and the memories that go with them. The one that I wore in 2003, when my fatigue led to the discovery that I had leukemia, is actually blue with a green stripe and a white one. I couldn't throw that one away, but I have mixed feelings about wearing it.

I recently asked a runner friend what he does with his T-shirts, and he said he folds them neatly and puts them away in a spare room. He told me he has seen ads for people who will take these kinds of shirts and cut them up and place them into a quilt.

I can't cut let anyone cut up my shirts!

I weeded through the pile and added the regular giveaway shirts to the bag. The rest are in a smaller pile still on the closet floor. A blanket chest at the bottom of my bed is overstuffed with out-of-season clothes belonging to Katie and me. I am going to sort through those clothes, and then I think I will put the race and tennis shirts in there.

The chest is a story in itself. It was an unfinished piece that Jim painted blue and that my mother decorated with beautiful painted flowers: a brightly-colored bouquet in the center of each panel, with smaller flowers in each corner and a vine traveling around the edges, in her distinct free-flowing style. I can still see her working on it on two sawhorses in the living room.

Unfortunately, the top of the chest is a magnet for clothes I mean to put away, papers I mean to file and books I mean to read. I am making myself sound like a major slob, but it really isn't that bad. I periodically clean the chest off, and I am so happy with the results (as I'm sure my mother would be...or is.)

To get to the clothes, I need to clean the top.

This multiple-step project should keep me busy until I get the final biopsy report early next week.

10 comments:

Ann said...

I went through my closet 2 weeks ago and pulled out almost everything from before i was diagnosed. I kept telling myself that I was holding on to things that I would never wear. Chris and I donated them the next day and I have to admit that it's liberating to be free of the closet clutter.

PJ said...

You are one insane lady!

Connie said...

Good luck with your biopsy results! My mom just made all my old t-shirts (from Destination Imagination, Girl Scouts, ballet summer camps, Dan Kane, etc.) into a t-shirt quilt for me. I really like it, but I understand that you want to keep your shirts in one piece!

Elayne said...

Thoughts and prayers for you as you wait for your results and tackle your closet!

mikehamel said...

Ronni - have you had a chance to thumb through my new book yet? I would be interested in your opinion as a fellow writer.

Ronni Gordon said...

Mike:

Sorry, I haven't had a chance to read your book.

pam said...

Dearest Runder-Woman, All-Inspiring...

no matter the biopsy results, you will be fine...it's something that can be taken care of...

Remember that you are in the greatest hands medically, and have a circle of family and friends...and readers, infinite in their support...
Funny, i was just discussing the case of the missing socks, and have been planning for months to get rid of the sock drawer with one-socks-only!
Since you know that i love bad puns, you always knock my socks off! Tee Hee...
i also referred my Humanities students to your wonderful blog...just last Friday,
xop
also, it is somewhat genetic, for i used to keep tennis shoes, found out my aunt in london in the 1970[s did the same, as did apparently my biological grandfather, who used to play tennis with the King of Sweden! there you go...

Nelle said...

I went through my sock drawer about a month ago. I have finally started using the single socks that I had left over. They make exellent dust clothes if they are cotton. I also save some to cover PIC lines when I have them. I have found that every Tshirt I own is too big. My shoulders seem to have shrunken. I need to get some new ones before summer. Hoping to read about a good biopsy report soon.

Jonny said...

Single socks make great shoe polishing "mittens" (especially the white sport ones) if anyone still undertakes such a menial task these days. I love working with leather so I never mind doing it, and its such an easy sense of accomplishment for little effort.

Also, my father taught me how to shine my shoes and I earned my first 25 cent allowance doing mine and 25 cents more per pair doing his with single socks as polish spreaders.

So, save them socks, kid, and buff your shoes while you're getting "buff" on the road to being physically fit!

Jonny said...

Oh, and I forgot to add: since you are a transplated New Yorker and traitorous Red Sox (Ugh..it's almost like saying "Voldmort"!) fan -- may your "sox" drawer be eternally filled with moth-eaten, mis-matched, laundry shredded, color-run red socks so shrunken that only only your dog can wear them!

Do I sound bitter just because Lord Voldmort's team took took 2 out of 3 from the Yanks at Fenway...

It's a long season... stay well.