Famous Sock Wearers Down Through History
by Mark Lyons
SammySocks Etc. Blog - Comments and Observations from Someone Who Is a Retired Educator and Sammy’s Dad
People have worn socks for many years. Some of these people even wore the same pair every day for those many years. Phew-eee! I know, right? Amongst the multitude of people who have worn socks are some who are famous. What are the odds? Anyway, here is the short list.
Aristotle, Plato, and Socrates – Each member of this sock wearing trio, also known as the Arouraios (Rat) Pack, is famous in his own right. But rumor has it, these three Greek philosophers had formed their own sock wearers club and had joined a sock subscription service – Phi Beta Socks Are Us. Socrates liked socks with a question mark theme. Plato was partial to arithmetic socks and Aristotle dabbled in custom made GLO socks. Some sock historians support the theory that these three famous sock wearers started the old-man-wearing-socks-and-sandals fashion trend.
Cleopatra – This Queen of the Nile ruled over a vast empire. It is believed that Mark Antony was drawn to her because of two things: her power in ruling all of Egypt and her choice of socks. He was a cat person and Cleopatra was often seen with cats. In private, she scooted around the pyramids in various pairs of neon-bright socks featuring cats. If you look closely at Egyptian hieroglyphs, you will spot lots of figures sporting socks – many with images of cats.
Joan of Arc – As she stormed the besieged city of Orleans in France on her way to victory, Joan of Arc made sure to keep her feet warm. She wore wool knee highs made from the finest wool in all of France that you could get for just under 10 francs. Joan of Arc was not only a brave and fierce warrior, she knew the value of a dollar – or in this case - franc.
Marie Antoinette – Although known for her famous “Let them eat cake!” line, history has forgotten about the next sentence Marie Antoinette uttered. Almost as an afterthought, she was heard to say, “And they can get their own socks, too!” Completely overlooked now.
George Washington – George did wear socks, but he also used his socks for two things most near and dear to him. He used one sock from a pair to cover the hatchet he used to chop down the cherry tree so it would not get nicks in the blade and the other sock in the pair he used to wrap his wooden teeth in before heading off to bed.
Abraham Lincoln – Our 16th President wore a stovepipe hat. We all know that. But few, if any, know that he also wore stovepipe socks – long, black, knee high socks to match his hat. A vast majority of sock historians also ascribe to the notion that Abe had a bright yellow pair of socks that he would wear around the White House when he did his Tom Cruise impersonation from “Risky Business”.
Queen Victoria – As with most English monarchs, the Queen did few of the mundane tasks that we muddle through in this life herself. Wearing socks was no different. She had one of her ladies-in-waiting do that for her. Even then the Queen complained constantly about the seams.
Alexander Graham Bell – It is generally thought that the message Alexander Graham Bell spoke into the first telephone was, “Mr. Watson, come here. I want to see you.” Not true. What he actually said was, “Mr. Watson, please bring me my new pair of argyle socks. My feet are cold.” Mr. Bell’s feet were always cold as his home in Ontario was quite drafty. He spent all of his money on telephone stuff and had little left over for home insulation.
The Wright Brothers – On the eve of their historic flight near Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, Orville and Wilbur Wright were overheard arguing over who would pilot the airplane. They had packed only one pair of socks for the trip so they decided whoever got to fly the plane would get to wear the socks so their feet would be warm during the flight. (You do know that the air gets colder the higher you go above the earth.) Well, Orville won the argument so he got to fly the plane and wear the socks.
Jack Dawson from the Titanic Movie – If only he would have worn his wool socks! Jack left them in the room at the bottom of the ship next to the axe Rose used to chop his handcuffs in two. He would have survived the icy water scene, joined Rose on the wooden debris, kicked his woolen sock covered feet over to another piece of wooden debris, climbed on board the debris, and survived thus completely changing the end of the movie and history. Oh, for a pair of woolen socks!
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