Baby, don’t look at me that way

I’d like to take this opportunity to publicly apologise to these socks. If they weren’t inanimate objects and actually had feelings, we’d probably be on our way to some sort of couples therapy right now, and I don’t think it would be going well for me.

socksfolded2 2014-07-08

She’d be asking me questions like “Don’t you think the socks have a right to be upset with you? Didn’t you tell them that you were going to finish them by the 17th of June? Isn’t it July? How do you think they felt when you posted pictures of them on the internet when they were completely unfinished, and then called them names and said in front of everyone that you were sick of them, that they were boring… that you were going to end it if they didn’t try harder to entertain you.  I think we have to validate the socks feelings of humiliation here.”

sockssunshine 2014-07-08

Then I’d be stammering, and trying to come up with a defence, and I’m sure that I would try and come up with some excuse.  You know, I was busy, it was a joke, I write the blog for fun and I didn’t know I was hurting the socks feelings… blah, blah, blah. I’d sit there, and I’d apologise to the socks, and I’d tell them that I never meant to hurt them or shame them in front of the other socks. I’d say things like “Socks, you’re self-patterning, you know I’ve always loved self-patterning, you’re one of the enduring loves of my life, it’s just… The Rally.  The Rally is hard on my time man, and I know I’ve blown knitting deadlines in the past but I’m just really stressed out and I love your stripes baby, you’re classic, and enduring and really cheerful and I didn’t mean it when I said you were infernal and a pain in the arse it was just a bad day, or days… you know what I mean socks, It’s just that I…”

sockschair 2014-07-08

Then the therapist would put up her hand in a gesture to stop me, and she’d shake her head softly, and the socks would burst into tears and finally say it.  They’d look at me with resentment and hurt and their gussets would blaze with anger as they shrieked “WE KNOW ABOUT THE OTHER SOCKS STEPH. WE SAW YOU TOGETHER. YOU DIDN’T EVEN CLOSE THE PROJECT BAG.”

And there would be nothing I could do or say to defend myself. I am that kind of knitter, and there’s no point in pretending.  I’d just block them like I always do,  and move on.

PS: Yarn: Fortissima Colori, Socka color #9072, Needles: 2.25mm. Pattern, my plain vanilla socks from Knitting Rules.

89 thoughts on “Baby, don’t look at me that way

  1. I can’t believe this of you, Steph. You, cheating? You, being a two-timing harlot… oh, wait, the clue was in the name, eh?

    Still, I won’t believe it of you until you show us pictures. (i.e. I want to see pretty pictures of the other socks… the socks which are so amazing that you betrayed the other socks for them. Until another sexy yarn– hey, remember that bison? wasn’t that called sexy?– waggles its label at you.)

  2. I have a pair of socks on my needles at the moment who probably need the same therapy. They have been within 2 inches of done for about 4 months now.
    Maybe I will pull them out and finish them today.
    More likely I will spin. 🙂

  3. Yesterday I put some socks on stitch holders and threw them behind my deep, dark stash (with purpose, I might add). I think this is classified as, “trial separation.”

    Kudos to you for sticking it out, eventually! 🙂

  4. How rude of the socks! Didn’t they realize that as long as they remained on your needles they were still in a relationship status with you? It was so egocentric of them to think that it was exclusive! Now that they have been completed, what do they imagine will happen? Or will they moan and groan while sitting in a drawer and other socks are chosen to be worn? Silly Socks!!

    • You know, I sort of thought that, too, but here’s the thing– I’m not sure we can judge. Every sock is different… some need more overt devotion and attention whereas others are more relaxed. I’m not sure this is a case of one partner being “wrong,” exactly, but more of a marriage clearly not being made in heaven.

      • Good point! It could be that the socks had their nose out of joint because they were done in a vanilla sock pattern and not some trendy spiral or fancy cable or twisted stitch one.

  5. Congratulations on getting them done. Perhaps you could take them to Montreal to make them feel loved. And have fun contemplating new projects.

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  7. Oh, man! I love those socks. I had a very brief fling with some self-patterning yarn that looks as if might be a close relative of your socks’ yarn. I found it in a (gasp) thrift store and it was only half a skein, with no label, so I’m guessing here. Since it was clearly insufficient for even half a sock, I made an iPhone cosy out of it. Later I found more in different colours and made Flash Drive and Voice Recorder cosies with i-cord strings so they could hang around my neck or be looped through purse handles so I could never lose them. I’m a journalist – losing any kind of data-storage device is DISASTER. Loved knitting even these teensy-weensy projects with self-patterning yarn. On the other hand, I’m having a bit of a stalled relationship with some variegated sock yarn that so far has seen three different incarnations, none of them completed. I love the yarn, love the colours – just don’t seem to be “into” the socks – and at this rate neither will anyone else.

  8. Love it!!
    Ps… mine are in time-out, hidden in tightly closed project bags so I can’t see them glaring at me 😉

  9. I have a pair of solid color socks on my needles and my eyes roll back in my head every time I pull them out. Boring. Boring, boring, boring. Will save them for when I have to sit/stand/crouch for hours at one appointment or another.

  10. Let’s face it, it’s not the other socks, it’s the bike. I mean, they can compete with other socks, they can be stripier and have curvier insteps, but a bike? There’s only room for jock socks in that relationship! Give it up and admit that even a new-age sensitive knitter needs time to hang with other toys.

    I should know, I’m in a bike-or-die-on-Jul-27 relationship myself. Not as serious as yours – I’m only doing 90 km (although I do swim 2 km first). But my socks are being very understanding (read: uncast), and are in total awe at the pool thing.

  11. Don’t take this the wrong way, but what was in your coffee this morning? Socks is socks. They come & they go.The fun is in the pretty sock yarn. That’s were it’s happening, man!
    Every time I go into making a pair of socks it’s all happiness and the love of a new project/yarn/pattern – then it happens somewhere about the middle of the second sock -ugg the resentment, the long haul to the end. Then so glad it’s over so I can start a new pair of socks.

  12. Ha, you’re better than I am. I’d long ago have shown those socks the door. Guess I just don’t have the commitment for a long-term relationship! (And it must be said that even though self-patterning socks look fun, in reality, they’re boring to make–I’d need a truly riveting audiobook to get anywhere.)

  13. If it makes you feel better, the socks I just gave my boyfriend for our four-year anniversary have been on the needles in one incarnation or another (there was a snowblower involved, long story) for just about a year. He loves them and basically wants to frame them because he knows he’s never getting another pair (or at least not until I’ve forgotten about the snowblower).

  14. This was so funny. Thanks for that bit of comedy on a hot and steamy day. I am glad I am not the only person that feels twinges of guilt when I decide to work on certain projects over others that are waiting to be finished too.

  15. For heaven’s sake, your name is the Yarn Harlot, what were the socks expecting? They always go into the relationship thinking the other person can be changed…

  16. I really like the socks. But then I’m addicted to self patterning sock yarn. I will confess that the second sock makes me crazy. I usually have to settle for fraternal twins. Sometimes they aren’t even close. Fortunately I know a lot of kids who are really into mismatched socks. If I like the yarn and the colors well enough I’ll even wear them myself.

  17. If the “other socks” are the ones I am thinking of, didn’t you also post about them?

    On the other hand, they should have known you were a “harlot” from the beginning…

  18. Those socks are perfect and would have every right to be offended if they could. It’s a good thing that they’re not a golden retriever because then we’d be obligated to feel sorry for them. Since they are beautiful socks, we can admire them, guilt free.

  19. so glad you apologized and I feel a lot better. I’ve always thought they are beautiful socks, and when you have to knit 12 in a year, some of them simply have to be plain vanilla socks to meet the deadline.

  20. Too funny, though it seems like these would be the perfect socks to WEAR for Rally prep–they’re race colored. Granted, it’s more a Grand Prix/NASCAR color suite, but still appropriate.

  21. Wait, I’ve been biting my tongue because I’ve been waiting for the usual suspects to take charge here…

    Where are Rams and Presbytera?

  22. I think I just found out what I’m going to do with a little gift of “just for me” money I got a few weeks ago . . . I know there was a reason I was hanging on to it!

    Now I just have to figure out whether I’m going to make them for me or for my daughter who will definitely want them . . . I just might have to get two!

  23. I would absolutely be judging here, if, at Knitting Day, my two oldest knitting friends hadn’t first cheered my grafting a second toe (pair! finished!) and then asked “So what’s next closest to being done?” Two tote bags (just of socks) later, we’d identified four pairs nearing completion, four more with terminal issues and a scarf that was always going to curl. What knitting friends do for you is rip out the losers while you’re evaluating the next substratum. I now have lovely yarn for five pairs of socks and five pairs of nearly-done. (I know. The fifth pair wasn’t in the bag, it was on the back of the couch.) My harem isn’t hearing about your couples therapy. No, it’s polyandry! Finally! Line up, boys …

  24. It’s a tribute to your writing ability that while I was laughing hysterically, there was a little part of me that felt deeply sorry for the socks that suffered your infidelity. As someone who has no less than six wip’s (two of which are socks), I can relate……

  25. Luckily my neglected project is a baby blanket that hasn’t learned to speak yet — no counseling for us! And since it’s just not…the right color?…the right pattern?…the right yarn?…right at all? it will be in for some frogging. And I will not feel guilty. And the summer baby will be fine until Fall when I will have The Right Baby Blanket (whatever that means at this point) done.

      • It’s amazing! Me too! I had this blankie half done and it was lovely, the pattern was fine, the gauge was fine – but I just wan’t feeling it. One more stitch would have sent me right off my stick. But Ah – the loveliness revealed when I ravelled it and it became skeins once again! I’m now two-thirds done on a lovely baby sweater and happy as a clam.

  26. In your favor, I think you can remind the socks that in spite of your verbal unkindness to them, you did take a lot of trouble to make sure their stripes matched. Exactly. You didn’t necessarily have to do that.

  27. I think they have a right to be angry…after all, they are still pretty adorable! And now that I feel guilty by association, I will probably pull out my WIPs from the closet and give them another chance…*baby come back* you can blame it all on me, I was wrong, and I just can’t live without cha…

  28. My sides hurt from laughing so hard. Can’t say I’m not guilty of the same thing, though; but I do have to say I’m overjoyed to know that I’m not the only one making excuses (no matter how ill-conceived or insensitive) and pleas for projected finish dates to my WIPs.

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha – ow ow ow ow…

  29. Seems like “plain vanilla” socks were a little too “plain vanilla” for you, despite the self-patterning yarn. Next time, try something with a pattern — ribbing, cables, lace, even seed stitch! Or, save the “plain vanilla” things for times you need to keep your hands busy, but don’t want to pay attention to the knitting. For example, one of those raucous family gatherings, watching something special on TV/DVD, watching your cat go bats**t crazy over a new catnip toy, etc.

  30. I have that exact wool. It’s been sitting in the stash for a couple of years now. Haven’t even been able to bring myself to knit the socks yet. Some wool has bad mojo!

    • Hmmmm… I think that to find redemption for my own Infidelity with UFOs, I may have to count them and make a donation of the equivalent in toonies… or loonies. Nice socks. I hope that they are appreciated when worn!

  31. I guess I have a lot of socks needing therapy. My excuse is, there are times and places for each pair. I don’t like cable needles or patterns to follow on the subway or at work .
    They’re in different project bags.. Probably don’t know about each other:)

  32. this had me screaming with laughter. I knit up a pair of socks in this yarn earlier this year… after it sat in my stash for literally YEARS. I had to really push to finish them, they just did not excite me in the end. 🙂

  33. Wonderful matchy matchy socks! How great of the dyers to have done such a good job so that a knitter’s world is easy and colorful! I’m sure the socks will forgive you once the delighted owner is wearing them all over town.

  34. I gotta say, the socks have a lot of company in their pain, here. Why, I callously abandoned a pair of socks that was three-quarters done to take a brand new ball of sock yarn to the UK with me, finished those socks, and then started a *second* pair of new socks (with some lovely yarn I bought in Scotland) without giving the languishing WIP a moment’s consideration. Hey, it’s a hard, cruel…well, actually, soft and woolly…world out there, and we knitters are a distract-able lot.

  35. You Harlot you! At least you stay true to yourself and the socks are matchy-matchy. You’ll do fine with the Rally.

  36. heeheeheehee……I can’t identify with socks as I don’t knit them, but I have finally grown old enough to not feel guilty about unfinished WIPs. However, the Oatmeal Stout scarf had me at “hello!” and I’m almost done (in 6 days!)

  37. I can’t even imagine what my socks are saying as they sit in the mending bin watching me, well, not mending them.
    My Karmic Balancing Gift has arrived. I am in awe of the generosity of our fearless blogger and her many friends. (And a wee bit disappointed I can’t post a photo in the comments.

  38. Hi Stephanie – though you found these socks boring to knit, they look really fun. Thanks for posting the link to the yarn supply – unfortunately Camilla Valley yarns has sold out completely and the lady there told me that their phone has been ringing off the hook with people looking for this yarn – all of your readers must be aspiring to knit some socks like this! Love your blog!

  39. Thank you for that, I needed that today in so many ways. I laughed. I related. I have recently discovered (slow) sock knitting in the past year and I am smitten with (slow) sock knitting and feel like I would be the codependent in the couples sock therapy. “I know I could be better for you, if maybe I had more time, please don’t drop my stitches …” kind of dialog.

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  41. I absolutely love your posts! This one made me laugh out loud (and drop a stitch!). My kids think I’m nuts, but at the end of the day, a quick read like this one is so refreshing! Thanks!

  42. Guffawing… while my own pair of socks are little kids in the back of the car singsonging repetitively in loud boredom, Are we almost therrrrrrrrrrrrre….

  43. Well I’m glad that you made amends with the socks. I could tell that it was just mis-directed anger about life in general that made you say those mean things out loud. (I can’t recall it the blog post appeared during the caffeine deprivation period….)

    But on a lighter note, the socks must be happy that their brothers and sisters are being adopted/bought at a quick rate by people all over North America due to Web ordering.

  44. I love the self-patterning colorway. I think you should wear these black, red and gold (predominately) socks on Sunday and root for Germany. (I’m German-American.) Then, won’t they feel special? All will be forgiven. If that doesn’t work, send them to me. I promise to love them.
    Julie in San Diego

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