There are many weird and quirky things that I did when I was a kid, but one of the things that I remember the most was an accidental mixing up of my socks and the peanut butter my mom keeps in her fridge.

I was taking off my socks as I walked to the fridge to get peanut butter to make a PB&J for an after-kindergarten snack. For some still unknown reason I took the peanut butter jar out, put my dirty socks into the fridge and then threw the peanut butter into the laundry basket. Don’t even try to imagine how my mom felt when she saw the fridge and the laundry.

So what happened? After many, many years of contemplation over that subject matter, I came to the conclusion that I was actually having one of those epiphanies that only strike young children the moment the door of the fridge opened – it must be the cold air that was blowing me out of the confusion of reality – and that I was in fact staring at the answer to the universe. Everything is connected, even random objects like peanut butter and socks.

You think I’m crazy, I know, but if you think about it, there really are a lot of things peanut butter and socks have in common. Perceptively speaking, they both have a unique aroma – especially if your feet sweat a lot – that nothing else in the world can substitute.

Both of their colors vary depending on the brand. Texture- wise, although people use different parts of their bodies to feel peanut butter and socks, they both feel smooth. Don’t your feet feel so comfortable when you slide on your socks? Depending on your hygienic habits, they could both be greasy, too.

Going beyond how our senses think of peanut butter and socks, you can see both of them in most supermarkets, watch their commercials on almost every channel, and all the kindergarten teachers teach kids about socks and peanut butter.

“Okay now, kids, put your socks on your feet, and put peanut butter on your bread.”

Except for sensory and practical aspects of them, both peanut butter and socks have very profound philosophical meanings. Socks are the last step of a human’s covering himself up, which symbolizes the final steps of the development of our civilization.

I mean, if you don’t have clothes yet, you wouldn’t think about dressing your feet, would you?

Same with peanut butter. Peanut butter is really more of a luxury food, something that you only think about when your basic nutritional needs are met. Unless you have enough bread to keep you from hunger, you won’t want to make your bread yummy by putting peanut butter on it. Therefore, peanut butter and socks have similar symbolic meanings regarding the developmental stages of human civilizations.

And if you still think I’m crazy – yeah, you probably do – for making such a connection between peanut butter and socks, this last piece of evidence is undeniable. Both socks and peanut butter are avoided by girls who care about their appearances.

And both peanut butter and socks cause pimples. Yes, socks do cause pimples, if you use them as towels.

Just one more thing before this ends – my mom never cooked my dirty socks for dinner, if that’s what you’re wondering.

Wang can be reached at ewang@campustimes.org.



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