I was just thinking about that now as I was laying on the couch, looking at my feet, at my high tech WrightSock CoolMesh low cut socks from REI, socks that don't get wet, (or at least dry quick) hold the heat when its cold, don't make you sweat, never wear out and fit just below the ankle, where they don't constrict the circulation- and it got me thinking.
Back six, seven years ago , I had to buy low cut socks for my 'wigger' (White N-word) son, who was following the style of the ghetto 'ballers' who wore $100 sneakers and no socks. The boy didn't want to wear the low cut socks as they were only a 'fake' way to seem not to be wearing socks. This seemed phony to the boy, but the constant nagging from his mother and blisters on his feet at summer b-ball camp finally convinced him to wear the low cut socks. It was one of his first encounters with the false compromises that life forces on us.
Still - even though he was wearing the low cut socks as a compromise with his mother and his feet, those very same low cut socks were an anathema to the Bobby Knight wannabes who coached the young athletes in my neighborhood. Militaristic douche bags who could not seem to communicate at normal decibels, and who of course were only doing it for Jesus, these dumb dicks demanded an All-American look from their players and that meant socks that were two to five inches above the tops of the high top sneakers. It was a hard thing for the boy to deal with, and I had mixed emotions on the subject.
There is no getting around the fact that wearing no socks with expensive shoes is an olfactory nightmare. Remember the line in "Caddie Shack" where Rodney asked the skinny hoodlum who was bar tending "Hey Sabu, can you make a bullshot?" The kid answered, "Can you make a shoe smell?.." Well nothing can make a pair of 'Air Jordans' smell like no socks. I found myself agreeing with Bobby Knight for aromatic reasons, if nothing else.
White boy junior high B-Ball was about submitting to discipline,running in circles, doing endless drills, doing everything except actually playing the game. Individuality, flair and an artistic sense of the game was a ticket to the bench, which is where my son ended up. But I am verging on to the b-ball story which - is too long to tell - for now anyway.
Chris Everett played wearing low cut socks as I suppose other lady tennis players did. Not sure about Martina Navratilova. I think she wore higher socks. I am not going to draw any conclusions there.
So some girls and ghettos kids didn't like to show their socks above their sneakers. The local high school basketball coach threw kids off the team if they didn't 'show white' above the top of the shoe. The lines were drawn. At the time I wore high white socks on the weekends. The boy went to Catholic school, where at least socks length wasn't an issue.
Remember Alberto Juanorena who dominated the 1976 Summer Olympics and the great Tommy Smith in Mexico City? . High socks. They were my sock role models. At least until I got old and got a job that put me on trans-continental plane trips 2-3 times a month.
Well now - for me - its about circulation baby.
Try sitting on a plane for six hours with high socks that don't sag. You'll spend the next day trying to feel you toes.
I am a low-cut socks man now for life I think. I'm not trying to be ghetto baller, just trying to feel my toes. Not sure where that puts me on the big picture sock continuum.