By Jerry Zezima

I’ve always wanted to be a legend in my own time, but I don’t wear a watch. And I’d like to be a legend in my own mind, but I don’t have one. So it’s nice to know that I am, at the very least, a legend on my own feet.

That’s because I have just purchased, at the low price of $22, or $11 per size 11 foot, a pair of Legend socks from my granddaughters’ school fundraiser.

The hosiery is white, with bright red stripes, black toes and heels, several grinning mug shots of yours truly and, scattered over each comfy sock, the words “The Legend” in black uppercase lettering.

The socks have made me stylish from head to toe. They’re a feat for the feet. And they are the best item I have ever purchased from a school fundraiser.

My experience with these sales dates back to when my daughters were in elementary school. In those long-ago days, my wife, Sue, and I were guilted into buying stuff we didn’t want or need so we wouldn’t suffer the humiliation of being the cheapest parents in town.

The most popular item on the fundraiser list was — and still is — holiday wrapping paper.

You can be on a roll with enough paper to wrap not only innumerable gifts, most of them for the kiddies, but the entire Christmas tree.

But it’s all for a good cause, namely the school where children learn math but not the economics that can drive their parents and grandparents to the brink of bankruptcy.

Other popular fundraiser items are candy, chocolates, cookies, assorted nuts, kitchen utensils, holiday plates, candles, lanterns, planters, jewelry, coffee mugs and clothing, including hats, gloves and, the best choice, pajamas.

A couple of years ago, I ordered a pair of PJs with the school logo on both the top and the bottom. I proudly wore them not only to bed, but around the house and even to run errands.

I have gone to the gas station in my pajamas. I’ve also gone to pick up pizza and Chinese food. Once I even did some Christmas shopping in them.

Every time, I have met people who’ve either smiled warily or refused to make eye contact with me. In one store, a woman pulled out her cellphone, presumably to call the cops. I dashed out of there and drove home, where Sue expressed dismay but not surprise at my shamelessness.

My daughter, the mother of the girls with the fundraiser, shook her head sadly. My granddaughters loved it.

Now I have a pair of personalized socks. They are the highlight of this year’s fundraiser, which has an announced goal of $6,000. I fervently hoped it didn’t mean Sue and I had to spend that amount ourselves.

To find out, we went online — fundraisers used to be on thin brochures — and beheld countless choices.

Sue picked — you’ll never guess — wrapping paper.

I thought I would get assorted nuts because I am one. Then I saw the socks, which knocked my socks off.

So I ordered them. But to get the socks personalized, I had to upload a good quality photo of myself, a tough task considering no photo of me is of good quality.

Fortunately, my daughter is a talented photographer who had recently taken a head shot that made me look human. She uploaded it and sent it in with my order.

Not long afterward, my socks arrived. They are the height — or, considering they go on my tootsies, the bottom — of Fashion.

I invited my granddaughters to come and meet my smiling feet.

“I like them!” said one of the girls, who is in fifth grade. “You can even wear them with your pajamas.”

Her little sister, a second-grader, added, “You’re a legend, Poppie! Just make sure you don’t stink them up.”

Copyright 2023 by Jerry Zezima

Originally Published on

Jerry Zezima Humorist, Author, Public Nuisance

I write a humor column for Tribune News Service, which distributes it to papers nationwide and abroad. If you have ever wondered why the newspaper industry is in trouble, it would be because of me.

As a chilling example of just how low journalistic standards have sunk, I have won many awards, including seven for humorous writing from the National Society of Newspaper Columnists.

I have a strong social media presence, I have made many radio and television appearances, I have done several YouTube videos, I am a popular public speaker, and I am writing a sitcom. If you think TV is bad now, wait until my show gets on the air.

I live on Long Island, N.Y., with my wife, Sue. We have two daughters, five grandchildren and many creditors. I have no interesting hobbies.

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