A deep part of humanity is the passion to know, to understand the how’s and why’s of the universe around us. Therein lays the problem. You see, this passion can oftentimes create more havoc than solution, and will, if the technically challenged are left unsupervised and with tools.
My dear friend became a victim of an overzealous desire to solve one of life’s great mysteries, and perhaps a mystery that is best left unknown. The Ever-Mystical Sock Vortex!
His crusade began one Saturday morning with the simple task of getting dressed. The jeans and t-shirt combination were as usual. Socks and shoes would round out the basics and then off to the store for groceries. The process halted at the sock drawer. One sock here, nothing matching there, missing partner somewhere. The investigation continued in the laundry hamper.
Clothing pulled from the deep basket, piece by piece. Piles grew as he continued the search. “Why don’t any of the socks have a match?” He questioned under breath. His wife called out from the kitchen with a what?
“Nothing”, he muttered. “I’m looking for a match to some of my socks”, he said as he raised his volume so she knew he was paying attention. All the way down to the bottom of the basket, and nothing. How could this be? Where did the other half of all these socks go? Is this some sort of prank?
He walked out to the kitchen looking as a sleuth investigating a crime scene and looked at his wife quizzically. “My socks”, he muttered. “Where is the other half of all my socks?” She glanced up from here newspaper and shrugged both shoulders while trying to convey her best puzzled look. “I dunno.”
The dryer. That must be it, he thought. That’s the place they say the socks disappear from.
He stepped through the kitchen and into the laundry room. A simple area with a washing machine, that dryer next to it, and various cleaning solutions lining a shelving unit next to the machines. He opened the dryer door and glanced inside the drum. Reaching in, he felt around the tub hoping for a handful of socks to just magically to appear, ending his quest. Nothing. No socks within and nothing on the right or left of the outside.
His mind became filled with cartoon images showing the intricacies of the dryer’s operations. Ok, he thought, the vent hose that comes out of the back of the machine goes to the hole in the wall and out of the house. Yes, that’s it! Outside! The dryer has pulled the socks through the drum, through the vent, and out of the house and into a pile in the backyard! That’s where they went!
Grabbing a pair of sandals on the way to the back door, he shuffled to the backyard. Finding the exit port for the dryer, he studied the ground around. Nothing. Nothing but leaves, grass, and dirt. He peered into the vent hole, squinting in deep study. “This is ridiculous!” He muttered.
Back inside, he knew what needed to be done. Grabbing his tool box, he understood that the best way to solve a mystery is to dismantle the cause of the mystery! Time to take the dryer apart! This, of course was met with some stern warnings and skeptical verbiage from his wife! She tried to explain the rational to him, but knew that this issue would not rest until he had satisfied his own quest.
“I’m gonna go to the store. You do whatever it is you think you have to do.” She stated with authority. “But, by the time I get back, this whole mess better be cleared up and that dryer in full functioning capacity!” And, with that, she passed through the front door, head shaking slowly side to side.
He peered down at the magical box and grabbed the screwdriver.
Later in the afternoon, my dear friend’s wife arrived back at their house with an arm full of groceries and a sunken heart. There, from laundry room and into the kitchen, lay the remnants of a once operational dryer. The machine that worked great was now in pieces and strewn around the floor. He glanced her way while holding a box with wires in his hand. “Nothing,” was all he could muster.
Her face said enough, but her raging mind wasn’t done yet. He looked down and with a defeated gasp said “I just don’t understand where the socks go.”
Before she could let loose with both barrels of infuriation, the last semblance of calm allowed her to utter a piece of rational thinking. “Did you ever stop to think that maybe the socks disappeared before they get to the dryer?”
With that, he looked at the washing machine with revelation in his eyes and reached for the screwdriver.