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Pull the other one


They lived in a house in the Midlands. They were all single, of course, except for the Argylls who had separated in the bathroom and had never noticed each other again in the crowd. Most didn’t know what had happened to their significant other. There were stories; there were always stories about why their partners had left. But no one really knew. Four members of the Green family thought their other halves had simply gone in search of adventure, maybe with that one-legged pirate who had come to visit. They mourned them silently. They would never now go places together, and the desertion made them look limp and lifeless. Maybe being single meant they didn’t age so fast. But still, where was the fun in having to stay home all the time?

Sometimes one or two came back. There were quick, unsettling rumours of dusty adventures behind radiators and of suffocating in the dark grittiness of armchairs. But there was never any chance to talk properly because the pairs always left to live somewhere else.

And then, of course, there was the horror of what happened under the bed. Not all the partners had just disappeared without trace. Some of them were taken by the giant dog, and they were never seen whole again. Weeks, sometimes days, went by before the soggy remains of some bright traveller were salvaged from the darkness and thrown away without ceremony.

There were compensations. Sometimes they lay on the carpet, all 56 of them, and just touched each other. It was called the Day of the Counting. But always afterwards, many went away and were never seen again. The young Stripes said that this was because they too had gone on a great adventure. But the savvy Woollens knew better; the socks, who had been loneliest longest, had at last gone to meet their maker.

About elainecanham

I started blogging because I'm a writer, and I thought I ought to. Now I realise that I blog because I lwant to; even when I can't think of much to say. I do a lot of work for local businesses - get in touch if you like my style.


14 thoughts on “Pull the other one

  1. Brilliant!

    Posted by Dan Hoger | April 19, 2014, 8:20 pm
  2. Lovely! An ode to single socks.

    Posted by Jools | April 19, 2014, 6:58 pm
  3. I wonder how often any of them took a shower – as, according to some medical journals, they live in extremely toxic surroundings – a spoonful was enough to kill a roomful of humans, they say.

    Oh well – very well conceptualised and written, if I might add 🙂

    Posted by Eric Alagan | April 19, 2014, 1:08 pm
    • Are you saying that when the bomb drops, only the socks will be left standing? (That’s certainly true in my husband’s case, anyway). Thanks for the compliment, too.

      Posted by elainecanham | April 19, 2014, 2:19 pm
  4. You love them, shelter them, keep ’em clean … and then they just leave you. Disappear into thin air

    Posted by lbwoodgate | April 18, 2014, 9:54 pm
  5. Very imaginative and enjoyable. Well knitted. I wish I’d thought of it, darn it.

    Posted by Bruce Goodman | April 18, 2014, 7:21 pm
  6. So sad, such a denouncement of society that we can’t even look after our own properly.
    xxx Massive Hugs xxx

    Posted by davidprosser | April 18, 2014, 5:27 pm
  7. I always enjoy your witty posts and now I have managed to find a way to comment on them, even though I am still locked out of my account.

    Loretta Livingstone


    Posted by Loretta Livingstone | April 18, 2014, 4:39 pm

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