548. Darn Socks!

Image result for socks with holes picturesThe Coffee Summit banter turned to holey socks as Joel recounted vignettes from one of the ultimate cheapskates in American history… Bud.

“When he came to interview it was obvious at the firm, his suit and tie were obviously brand new. As we talked I noticed he had not cut the tags off his sleeves. Instead he’d just tucked them in. Years later I brought this observation up to him. That’s when he told me he planned to take the suit back if he did not get the job.”

Image result for man  with price tags still on pictures“Never took himself or family to the doctor. Nope. His dad was a veterinarian and that was good enough. Advil and duct tape for a broken bone. Horse antibiotics were the same as human. Why not? No copays.”

“Did he reuse toilet tissue also?”

“I hate to think that deeply. Some things are better not to know.”

Image result for tsa security pictures“Once, after one of our conventions, we were going through security at the airport. The TSA person told Bud to take off his shoes. He said he couldn’t. I leaned over and told him he had to or face further inspections, orificial inspections at that. He said he could not take his shoes off. I asked if it was his back again.”

“No, it’s not my back.”

“The TSA lady said, ‘Sir, you must comply now.'”

“That’s when Bud confessed he had holes in his socks.”

“Sir, we’ve seen it all. Shoes off.”

“Can you believe that? Who keeps socks with holes, let alone wears them on a trip? My word, I recall my mother darning my socks back in the day. She’d pull a sock over a light bulb and sew the opening shut tight. Now this surgery would leave an uneven seam that would eventually rub your toe or foot raw. Not comfortable, but that’s what we did back then.”Image result for landfill images

“Yep, nowadays we just toss them in the trash. No more darning, darn it!”

“Landfills are bulging with socks Bud would likely wear. Yeah, it’s all a matter of perspective, I suppose.”

“Very perspicacious of you, Joel.”

“Don’t go tossing big words around again. Yesterday it was unscathed. I spent the rest of the day trying to think of when I had ever heard scathed used. I wasted my entire day with your verbal trivia.”

“And yet, scathed is a word unto itself, is it not?”Image result for scorched images

“Yes, so what? It’s rarely used and is functionally useless.”

“Now, now my hasty friend. Some things come in handy just for a moment, like dental floss. It does not have to last as long as a battleship to serve a use.”

“I don’t know why I indulge your whacked out monologues. I always regret it. Name something else that you use once and throw away besides paper products.”

“Rental funeral shoes.”Image result for disposable funeral shoes images

“What? No, no, it’s a trick to torture me for another day. I needed two shots of Grey Goose to unhear scathed. I’m not doing this again.”

“Well, go ahead then and overspend on your funeral costs.”

“I’m not taking the bait.”Image result for purple rubber worm images

“It’s not bait; it’s an affordable dressy footwear option, but if you want to throw away your hardly embezzled money, that’s on you.”

“Okay, rental shoes for funerals.”

“Yeah, it’s a little known cottage industry. Not a lot of capital required to get started. You start with black and brown men’s loafers in the most common sizes. Dead feet tend to shrink a little, so you want to go a half size smaller than living feet.”

“Yes, go on. I already regret this.”

“Yeah, slip on, slip off before you go to your final reward. Constructed of hard card board and spray painted with acrylic paint. Indistinguishable from real leather.”

“And can you put pennies in the saddle strap’s slot?”Related image

“Certainly, but there is an upcharge, of course. The luxury package includes Mercury headed 1936 silver dimes. Our highest grade is platinum, which includes a pair of five dollar gold coins. You see?  It’s like any other business model, Joel.”

“Seems a bit morbid to me.”

“That’s your death anxiety, Joel. Tick tock. The Grim Reaper of Death steps closer in Hush Puppies every day. You just can’t hear his feet shuffling. Which is why renting high quality funeral shoes now will make it so much easier for your survivors. They won’t have to cobble together all the loose ends.”Image result for grim reaper images

“You had to say cobble there, didn’t you?”

“Again, I suspect that you fear your own demise too much.  The mere mention of a cobbler sends you into a tailspin. Joel, it’s not always about your mortality.”

“I don’t want to rent your foolish funeral loafers, that’s all. How do I know they haven’t been used before and recycled?”

“My good man, that’s where the profit comes in. Of course they have been worn, if that’s even the appropriate verb. Certainly they are low mileage. But, like bowling shoes, a good spray of disinfectant and some talcum powder and they’re as good as new.”Related image

“I refuse to bowl because of the communal shoes and the communal balls. I was, I am still an only child and sharing is hard for me. I never mastered the concept.”

“You are a sad little man, Joel.”

“I know, but I am counting on a rather limited audience for your blog. Otherwise I’d have to bother with a cease and desist letter.”Image result for ebenezer scrooge images

“Ho hum, I’m not scared of your legal panty raids. Just remember: you are my lawyer. And what sort of lawyer sues his client? Huh? I can’t hear you.”

“A bad one.”

“And why is that, Joel?”

“Uh, because then… I’d have to…”Related image


“I’d uh, have to, uh, bill you for my hours…”

“Yes, and then what?”Related image

“Uh, you’d be unlikely to pay me.”


“And uh therefore I’d have unbillable hours on my ledger, which is a capital offense.”

“Very astute, Joel. So, we have removed the dentures from the tiger, yes?”

“I could still gum you to death.”

“You have the gravitas of a sock puppet, my good man.”Image result for sock puppet pictures