Of course, sock monkeys are one of the oldest toys around. Kids used to get them for Christmas during the Depression—hand made by Ma out of worn-out Rockford Red Heel socks. They ended up under Christmas trees from Maine to California during the 1930s.
My bookmarker is an updated version, but it has the same sticky-out ears, same straight-across smile, and same round-button black eyes. However, I’m having one major problem with my sock monkey bookmarker: It’s hard to take any book seriously when it has a sock monkey sticking out of it.
I tried putting the sock monkey into some of the more serious books I had sitting on my shelves: The Complete Works of William Shakespeare, Norton’s Anthology of English Literature, Ernest Hemingway’s For Whom the Bell Tolls. I even tried sticking him in my master’s thesis entitled,
“Analysis of Transferability of Technical Writing in Fulfillment of General Education Requirements,” which was without question the most boring document ever written since the beginning of time.
The results? All the books took on the look of Curious George Goes to the Hospital.
Don’t get me wrong—I love my sock monkey bookmark. All I’m saying is that it’s become more difficult for me to take an author’s angst as seriously as I did before, with the little sock monkey smirking at me over the top of the book.