Archives for posts with tag: time

It’s December 21st, in case you were wondering, and I’m flying out tomorrow to visit my folks in Reno for the holidays.  I’m halfway through both sleeves of this sweater, still need to knit the collar and pockets, sew on buttons, weave in ends and block the damn thing before a reasonable enough hour tonight so that I can maybe get a couple hours of sleep in some sad effort to reboot my system out of this insane I-can-knit-a-sweater-for-someone-else-before-christmas illness.  In other words: I’ve exited the realm of sort of crazy and entered the realm of bat shit, there’s no turning back now, crazy.  Madness.


Last night, as I was staying up way too late on account of my mental problems, I decided to try on the sweater, because jeezus, it looks huge.  I immediately freaked out because the thing is down past my ass and I could probably fit another one of my arms through the sleeves.  Panic set in because I need to give this to my friend in about 36 hours and there was no way I could fix any of these issues.  Then I remembered that I’m 4’10” (4’11” on a good day) and of course this wasn’t going to fit me.  Seriously, you’re looking at a genius right here.

I’m still slightly panicking today because what if it doesn’t fit her either?  What if she hates it?  What if this was the worst idea ever and oh my god, is that a dropped stitch?!!?  If you know me, I’m pretty much freaking out all the time about stupid things.  I know I do it and I know that it’s completely irrational.  But I won’t stop freaking out until someone can prove to me through scientific reasoning (bonus points if you bust out polynomial equations) that I’m freaking out for no reason.  So I headed to the yarn store where I work, hoping someone there with more experience knitting sweaters for average sized people would talk some sense into me.  And they did.  The sweater fit one of the women (of similar size to the recipient) there and so now here I am, eating a grilled cheese sandwich, click clacking on the keyboard, and talking myself up some big game, like I’m a hot shot.  I know what’s up.  I knew I had it in the bag the whole time.  I’ve got aaaaaaall night to knit this puppy up.  ha. ha. ha?  gulp.

Knitting is not a race.  At least this is what I have to remind myself when I have a self-imposed deadline to finish a cardigan and a pair of mittens before I leave for Japan again (which happens to be tomorrow).  Then again, if this was a race, slow and steady would definitely not be the winner.  In fact it would be so far away from winning that I dare say it’s even in the race.  Ergo: there is no race.

Except there is.  And it’s in my mind.  And I’m losing.

In this children’s fable, I am the tortoise, trudging along on a sleeve that I have ripped out twice already.  I’m methodically tallying my rows and marking my decreases, checking and rechecking the fit.  My former self of three weeks ago was the hare, thinking up new projects and stockpiling on yarn, obviously overconfident in thinking that it would accomplish all of these things before it was time to leave.  Every once in a while the hare stops and turns around and races back to the tortoise, and says things like, “don’t forget to hem that pile of jeans on your desk” and “wouldn’t it be amazing if you could sew a cover for your kindle?” and “you’re really taking your time with that sleeve, aren’t you?”  But the tortoise slowly nods his head and continues to knit, slowly and steadily.

The tortoise knows that it’s up against an impossible task.  It will not finish the cardigan by tomorrow and will not even begin on the mittens until at least a week from now.  But it sees the hare, foolish with his high expectations and acts of self-sabotage.  At least the tortoise will cross the finish line.  Although it will be in last place, it will have a perfectly fitting sweater when it gets there.  The tortoise worries about the hare.  Will the hare cross the finish line?  Has the hare even started the race?  The fact is that the hare was too busy thinking up obstacles for the tortoise (ie. future knitting projects) that it didn’t bother to enter the race.  If the hare had entered the race, however, I would be winning right now.  Because, let’s face it, I can imagine a hare knitting a helluva lot better than I can a tortoise.

But I digress, for as all children’s fables do, this story has a moral and in case you haven’t figured it out, it is that knitting is not a race.

Except it is.  And I’m losing.  Stupid hare.

Remember bedtime when you were a kid?  It always came too soon and you were always in the middle of something fun.  It didn’t matter how tired you were; sleep was not an option.  I’ll sleep when I’m dead, you’d tell yourself.  Except you probably didn’t, because kids don’t talk like that.  I probably said something else like, “but moooooooom…..I don’t wannaaaaaa….”  Regardless, you get older.  Work days get longer.  Beer drinking gets rougher.  Life is just plain harder.  Sleep is the only option.  Nap time is actually something you look forward too.

Occasionally, something happens.  It starts out so small you don’t even realize it’s happening.  A simple bargain with yourself: just 5 more minutes.  Next thing you know, it’s 1:30 am on a work night, you’re still wearing your jeans, your teeth haven’t been brushed, and half a pan of brownies has disappeared…probably in your belly.  Look.  Is it there?  You look at the ground, too humiliated to look anyone in the eye, your toe traces a brownie crumb on the ground, as you sheepishly answer, “maybe….yes” and a faint trace of brownie breath escapes your mouth.  Sigh.

Here’s a totally and completely hypothetical situation that could happen to you.  Or me.  But it didn’t happen to me, if that’s what you’re thinking.

Sunday 9:30 pm:  Come home from a bbq, tired, but it’s still early enough to do a little knitting.  Check in on the progress of sweater.

Lookin’ good!  A self-congratulatory wink and pat on the back as you tell yourself that you’re hot shit.  Freshy, you’re hot shit!  Thanks!  Feeling extra confident in your knitting skills, you sit down to start the decrease for the armholes.

10:20 pm:  Getting close to bedtime (which is surprisingly earlier than it was when I was 16…) but you’re only halfway through the decreases.  It’s best to keep going, obviously.  I mean, what if your gauge changes between tonight and tomorrow?  You never know.  Best to air on the side of caution and finish up the back.  Besides, you’re already so close to finishing it anyways.  Why wait until tomorrow when you can knit today?  PS: That’s the only time when that logic works for me.  Usually tomorrow is always a better time to do things.

11:00 pm:  Back is finished and bound off.  Time for bed.  Or is it?  I guess it would make sense to just pin it out and see how it looks.  You know, make sure that the fit is right.

11:15 pm:  Pin it against a favorite sweater to check the fit.  Everything looks copacetic.

You can go to sleep satisfied with your night’s work.  Make your way to the bathroom still a little elated about your handiwork.  Start looking forward to tomorrow’s knitting lineup: the fronts.  Look back towards the knitting corner and realize that all the yarn is still in hanks and that they will not wind themselves into balls overnight.

11:30 pm:  You’re standing in the kitchen, yarn draped over the silverware drawer, whisk in one hand.  You’re watching Return of the King, because you can.  The winding process is slow, because you lack a swift and ball winder, but it reminds you of that one part in Heidi (you know, with Shirley Temple?) and you laugh a little laugh and sing that stupid Heidi song, because you’re tired and delirious!  But you can’t stop yourself!!

11:45 pm:  Two balls of yarn have been wound.  They’re now sitting neatly on your coffee table.  Pretty center-pull balls.  So pretty you just want to start casting on.  Why not?  Now’s the perfect time, since your plan is fresh in your brain: knit both right and left fronts at the same time.  Let’s just start it and see how it goes.  Besides, Frodo has yet to destroy the ring.

1:00 am:  The bottom ribbing for both fronts is complete.  Your eyes are dry, your back is stiff, and your arthritis is acting up in your left hand.  It’s no matter, it was so worth it, you exclaim wearily and make your way into the bedroom.

1:05 am:  Begin posing yarn for photoshoot.  K2P2 insisted.

You know, this could have happened.  I’m not saying it did.  Because it didn’t.

Dear Supreme Ruler of the Cosmic Universe,

I know my birthday has already come and gone, but I was too busy partying like a rockstar entertaining guests this weekend to ask you for a special birthday wish.  This year, for my belated birthday present, I kindly ask that you give me more time.  More time to knit, that is.  You see, I’ve calculated how many hours I spend every week not knitting.  It’s a lot.  A lot more than I would like.

Can you give me a time suspending device that I can turn on when I feel the urge to knit (which quite possibly might be all the time)?  I understand that with great power comes great responsibility.  And I promise that I will only use this device for good!  There are so many new techniques I’d like to learn and so many gifts I’d like to make for some very deserving people.  You see?  It’s a selfless thing I’m trying to do over here.  I just need a little help getting some more time.  Thank you for your consideration.

Your humble servant,


PS.  I would also like to point out that I’ve been very good this year and have references.

PPS.  I cross my heart that the first thing I make with my new time suspending device will be a sweet raglan sweater for you.  I know it must be cold up there in the universe.

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