Happy feet: matching socks with their Fringe performer

  • The List
  • 27 July 2016

This article is from 2016

Fringe test: 'They always stay up even when I'm feeling down'

credit: Steve Ullathorne

Comedian and renowned sockspert Arthur Smith attempts the improbable

As Arthur Smith puts on an exhibition dedicated to the world of socks, we set him a test. Could he identify the owners of some cosy footwear from a longlist of high-end Fringe acts and a selection of pictures? Frankly, no, but he gave it a good old shot.

Lucy Porter's socks
Arthur: Those Superman socks: well, Barry Cryer IS Superman.
The owner is Lucy Porter: 'This pair was bought as a gift for my son but they were too big so I nabbed them. They're really comfy but they're from BHS so I don't know whether I'll be able to get another pair.'

Puddle's socks
Arthur: The black & white stripey socks look a bit like school sports socks, so probably Daniel Sloss as he only left school last month.
The owner is Puddles: 'I've had these socks for a long time. They're pretty rugged considering I'm such a big softee. They always stay up even when I'm feeling down.'

Daniel Sloss
Arthur: The black socks look boring but as an expert I know them to be worth £700 each as they're made from a special type of Cashmere wool which only becomes available every 200 years. So they must belong to Puddles the Clown.
The owner is Daniel Sloss: 'I chose these because they don't have cum all over them.'

Phil Nicol
Arthur: Those scabby grey socks were the ones used by Stewart Lee as a contraceptive during the Vietnam war.
The owner is Phil Nichol: 'These knee-high socks have helped carry me up Ben Nevis, through the rainforests of Queensland, down the slopes of Méribel, and have canoed through the lakes of Algonquin Park. They have protected my feet which are the most important part of an adventure. Also, I love a good knees-up.'

Nick Parsons
Arthur: The red socks with blue spots are very clean so they most likely belong to Jo Caulfield who has rigorous standards in both comedy and cleanliness.
The owner is Nicholas Parsons: 'I like bright and colourful socks. There are not many areas of clothing in which a man can be a bit of a peacock, but when it comes to socks you can really show off.'

Sam Simmons
Arthur: Those colourful socks on the rugby ball and tartan pyjamas? Definitely Rula Lenska as you could recognise those pyjamas anywhere and I know she once played rugby for Poland.
The owner is Sam Simmons: 'Here's my foot in the socks I kick my footy with: these are my footy socks. I also eat crumpets with Vegemite in my socks.'

Rula Lenska
Arthur: The multi-patterned pair resting on a duvet with pictures of elephants must be Simon Munnery's, as he brought back that duvet cover after his last yoga retreat in Croydon.
The owner is Eurobeat's Rula Lenska: 'I love these. Warm, cosy and ethnic.'

Arthur Smith: The Arturart Museum of Socks, Pleasance Dome, 3–29 Aug, free.

Arthur Smith – The Arturart Museum of Socks

Arthur Smith A unique exhibition telling the little known but inspirational story of socks. Rarely studied, discussed, or even thought about, socks have nevertheless made a huge contribution to the history of humankind. For this unique and inspiring exhibition Arthur Smith has sought out some of the great socks of the…