In a recent article, STella@xanadu.com complained good-naturedly about men and how seldom they ever wash their socks, and wondered whether men believe in some sort of "Clean Sock Fairy." I've taken courses in psychology and read this really neat book I picked up at the airport, so I can tell her with some authority that the truth is a lot more complicated than that.

The whole story with men, their socks, and laundry is one of libidinal role-playing and subliminal communication. To begin with, the sock is one of those special objects that can stand for either the vagina or the phallus. When STella's SO (let's call him George) puts his foot in the sock, his subconscious mind sees the foot as phallus and the sock as vagina. Quite naturally, he tries to keep his foot in the sock until STella pleads with him to remove it. What he's trying to tell her is that he would like to make love to her for days, without the slightest interruption, until she is utterly satiated.

After a week or so, STella persuades George to take the sock off (meaning, of course, "Enough intercourse! You have satisfied me completely!") Now the sock shifts roles. Long, narrow, stiff, malodorous, it has become the perfect phallic symbol, and imagine George's thrill as STella grasps it, remarks on its potency, and thrusts it into the washing machine (convex and filled with moisture, a vagina-symbol if there ever was one), whence after considerable agitation it emerges limp and dripping. There is a paradox here--STella has begged George to cease, and then promptly started the sexual drama up again-- but little does George's subconscious care about that. It just lies there watching and grinning.

So STella should consider herself fortunate. She has all that laundry to do, but her man loves her so, and finds her so alluring, that he wants to make love with her constantly, and is always telling her so (through his socks). Once again psychology proves that men are perfect and women are lucky.

By the way, you can always tell lesbians because they never own washing machines. They always rent one or go to the Laundromat.

And if you haven't guessed yet, this whole post is tongue-in-cheek. Hope you liked it half as much as I liked STella's.