Southern Thing Column

We need to talk about socks with sandals

Following is an excerpt of column published on It’s a Southern Thing. Click here to be directed to the full column now.

You know that time of year when people start wearing shorts with long-sleeve sweatshirts? It’s kind of an offshoot of the Southern fall, when we have no idea if it will be 85 degrees or 40 degrees when we step outside so at least one half will be suitably dressed. It’s a fairly acceptable combination … or at least not the target of much ridicule. But the men’s footwear version of sweat-shorts – socks with sandals – is not so well received. For millennia, women have tried to prevent their husbands from going out in public wearing socks and sandals.

In caveman days, Hairy-ette would try to reason with her hubby, Grog, begging him not to go saber-tooth tiger hunting or pterodactyl watching while wearing socks with his mammoth-fur sandals. It just wasn’t done.

In fact, it is a fashion combo that is so controversial, it has its own Wikipedia page that begins with these words: “Wearing socks and sandals together is a controversial fashion combination and social phenomenon.”

But it looks like all that could change with one Instagram post – David Beckham was shown wearing the combo and the internets has gone off its collective nut, y’all.

Beckham, who is known as much for being a fashion icon as soccer star, was sporting white socks with black athletic slides. Now let’s not have a come-apart here. We can overcome this. But wives who are now shaking in their sockless wedges take note: At least he was not wearing them with shorts.

So what is the problem with the socks-sandals combination? It could have devastating unintended consequences: Sandals were designed to leave your toes and heels uncovered. So if you cover the toes and heels with socks, you have offended the sandals while also rendering them pointless. Why would you want to hurt sandals’ feelings like that? Bless their hearts. Click here to red the column in its entirety.

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