Knits on a plane

Once again, because every time I say I knit on a plane, it sparks a round of questions, and the occasional intimation that I might be hallucinating, or knitting in my mind while I’m on the plane – I give you a whole row of knitters knitting on a plane. 

That’s Nat and Rachel, and my knitting was in my lap, and all the flight attendant said when she came by was "oh, it’s the knitting section!"

Later in the flight she came by to tell us that there was another knitter on the flight, and that she was making a sock.  She checked in with us about our projects (sock, sock, blanket) and didn’t way anything more about it – which is too bad, because I was really thinking that it would have been a ton of fun for all the knitters to pretend we didn’t know each other.

Telegram from the edge

Am knitting on blanket as much as possible, considering shortage of time and not inconsiderable factor of heat  Stop

Is very hard to put blanket on lap in 48 degree heat  Stop
That is 118 in Fahrenheit I looked it up Stop

Saw Jen last night Stop
She is growing a baby very quickly. Stop

I don’t think she can stop Stop

Must knit faster and buy air conditioner Stop
Not necessarily in that order Stop

A little light

It’s starting to seem that there is light at the end of the Sock Summit tunnel. It occurred to me this morning, as I drank what must be the millionth cup of coffee in the last week, that it’s possible that this is all my natural optimism, and that the light at the end of the tunnel is actually an oncoming train – but I don’t think so. I have fewer post-its every day, another big task bites the dust with every moment that I sit at my desk, and really I think stuff’s getting done. 

There’s brilliant moments too – like Natalie yelling "Fine- WHATEVER.  YOU DON’T KNOW MY LIFE" at the printer when it seized up and munched another teacher schedule into oblivion.  Mind  you, that could have something to do with the fact that it was about a thousand degrees in my dining room and I was totally forcing her to work in a terrible little sweatshop. (Rachel H remembers the sweatshop from last time.  She was stoic.)

The best sign that things are starting to get reasonable, is that the knitting is picking up again.  Not by leaps or bounds, but in little chunks that make me feel way more sane.  Last night I actually sat and knit for 20 whole minutes in a row, and  that’s a very good thing, because the deadline on this baby blanket is coming up fast enough that the mama is starting to worry about my lack of knitting time.

There’s legend round these parts that no baby comes before I finish their blanket, and If you’re buying into that legend, you’re 36 weeks pregnant in a hot steamy July and I’m not knitting (thus trapping you into possibly more time pregnant in a hot steamy July) – you’re going to get pretty pissed off, pretty quick.
I have a feeling I better knit faster.  I don’t want to be responsible for a moment of that.


It’s less than two weeks until Sock Summit my friends, and I apologize for the scarcity of the posts around here, but to say that things are crazypants would be to not even come close.  Every day is a blur of post-it’s and lists and conversations and check-ins, and now that the biggest part of it has gone to bed – it’s mostly little things. It’s like we knit a great big blanket out of a million colours, and now we’re weaving in all the ends so it looks nice and you can really call it done.

Between that and the travel and the fact that somewhere in here I still have a family and stuff I should be doing around the house – actually, I bet you can guess at the condition of the house.  If someone turned up at my door right now I wouldn’t let them in.  Partly because I personally look like a mess, but mostly because I can’t believe they would be able to resist the urge to wipe down the kitchen, do a load of laundry and try to assemble a cat out of all the hair on the carpet. The vacuum broke two weeks ago.  That’s another thing.  Yesterday for dinner I had celery with peanut butter on it and an apple, and I congratulated myself for really getting it together.  Standards have clearly slipped.

Luckily for the whole Sock Summit team (because I can personally guarantee that I’m not the only one who tried to figure out what food group coffee goes in this morning)  we are almost there – and as we go along we’re seeing brilliant flashes of what it’s going to be like.  Somewhere in arranging something for the Flashmob, I realize that we’re having one and just sort of giggle.  As we get ready to order badges, I remember what it was like being in the conference centre and watching people walk around with them, and I’m so tickled I can’t even tell you.  All of this is turning into something – a real something, a fun something… hell, an amazing something, and the trick is to be able to see that at 2am as you’re crossing another item off the list.  In the meantime, I totally crossed something off my list, and I feel like a rock-star.  June’s socks are finally finished.

They’re Revival, from Glenna C, and despite how very fancy they look (and how appallingly long they took me) I think they’re pretty fun and approachable.  Anyone who can read a chart, isn’t drinking a swimming pool of coffee a day and doesn’t have to tidy a Sock Summit up would likely have no troubles at all.

There’s a lot of twisted stitches, but  they’re not hard to work, and if you do the wee two stitch cables without a cable needle (and Glenna thoughtfully provides instructions) then the whole thing’s a snap.

The yarn’s a new favourite of mine,  Everlasting, from Dream in Color. It’s a 8-ply yarn, strong, cushie and soft – though a tad splitty when used in this incarnation.  (Your mileage may vary.)  I used a very manly colour called "Black and White" which is a good thing, because even though I sort of bunched these on to my feet for the pictures, they aren’t for me at all. (Not that I wouldn’t wear that colour, I totally would, but the man in question has conservative taste in footwear.)

The July socks are started.  Who knows when I’ll finish, I’m not really worrying about it right now.  I’m weaving in ends on the Sock Sumit, and I think it’s going to be really good when it’s finished.   I’m going to knit the daylights out of August.

(PS.  The Design for Glory contest ends soon.  Have you voted? They’re all extremely cool.)

Not Quite the Salt Mines

If you’ve had an email from me in the last 24 hours, it came from here:

Which is the scenic view at Sock Summit International World Headquarters, also known as Tina’s house.  That’s Tina smirking in the back, and Stephen beaming on the right, and he’s laughing because I told him to try and…

Never mind.  He wasn’t smiling before I said it, and after I said it he was. I won’t give you the details of what I said because we’re in mixed company.

My little sock is hanging out next to me, and even if I don’t get much knit on it while I’m typing and spread-sheeting and organizing, I sort of just feel better about it being close to me. I’m thinking that if I get can bash out a few rows here and a few rounds there,  I might actually nail these down, which at this point would feel like the biggest metaphor for getting things done that I can dream of.

If you’d have ever told me that by simply getting half a foot of a sock done I would feel like order was restored to the universe and that things were well sorted… I would have never….

Oh.  Nix that actually.  I’ve been a half a sock away from sanity for a long time. 

A Little Time

The weekend went at breakneck pace, with Joe setting me up with internet access,  power and his laptop in the car, so that even though we were off to North Bay to get Sam set up for camp, I didn’t need to miss a single moment of work. This was both completely thoughtful and entirely demoralizing, since I was hoping to have no choice but to take a few hours off and knit in the car.

We trucked up to North Bay (I’m going to tell you about the shad flies sometime. It’s nuts.) sorted our girl, stayed in a hotel (I worked while Joe and Sam went to the movies) then mobile officed all the way back to Toronto again, where I packed, slept and then made my way yesterday from Toronto to Portland for what should be the last critical meetings for Sock Summit.

As I was waiting to get on the plane, I was flipping out a bit.  (That’s an understatement. If I was flipping out a bit then let’s say I’m also only "a bit" concerned for Charlie Sheen’s grip.) Here was 5 hours of a workday coming, and I had no internet, and therefore no database or email and…

As I sat there, I wondered what would happen if I just didn’t worry about it. There was nothing I could do.  I could feel totally crappy and anxious about it, but it wasn’t going to make it possible to work on the plane.  It was just going to make me more neurotic, and that’s- well, this close to Sock Summit, that’s saying something.  They called the flight, and I snapped my laptop shut, and I made a decision.  I was going to take that time, and I was going to enjoy it. 

I got on the plane, I took out my sock and I watched a movie, and had a snack, and looked out the window at the amazing landscape below me – and I didn’t work at all, and I don’t feel bad about it, and now I’m even looking forward to the flight home next week. 

If nothing else, it means I might someday finish the June socks.

Canada Day

It’s really quite traditional for me to post something about the wonderful country I live in on Canada day, but with the limited computer stuff I’ve got going on since the unfortunate demise of my laptop (we have a plan. All will be well) I’ve sort of got limited ability to make a post work today.  I’d like to invite you then to re-read (or read for the first time, if you’re new here) the posts from the last seven years.  (Wow. I’ve been blogging a long time.)


For this year, since Canada’s Birthday coincides with Pride week here in Toronto (and because if I play my cards right, I can get the "if you love your country you hate mine" people and the "I’m not reading you anymore because you think that gay people should have the same rights as I do" people to all leave comments at once and get it done.)  I leave you with something that makes me very proud to be Canadian. It’s a quote from then Prime Minister Paul Martin’s speech in 2005 about the Same-Sex marriage bill.   If you have time, do read it all.  It’s a remarkable argument for freedom, human rights and the way Canadians do things.

I urge those who would oppose the bill to consider that the core of the issue before us today is whether the rights of all Canadians are to be respected. I believe they must be: justice demands it, fairness demands it and the Canada we love demands it…

There are times when we as parliamentarians can feel the gaze of history upon us. They felt in the days of Pearson and they felt in the days of Trudeau. We, the 308 men and women elected to represent one of the most inclusive, just and respectful countries on the face of this earth, feel it today.

There are few nations whose citizens cannot look to Canada and see their own reflection. For generations, men, women and families from the four corners of the globe have made the decision to choose Canada as their home. Many have come here seeking freedom of thought, religion and belief, seeking the freedom simply to be.

The people of Canada have worked hard to build a country that opens its doors to include all, regardless of their differences; a country that respects all, regardless of their differences; and a country that demands equality for all, regardless of their differences.

If we do not step forward, then we will step back. If we do not protect a right, then we deny it. Together as a nation, together as Canadians, let us step forward.