January 14, 2006

Citius, Altius, Fortius

That's the latin motto for the Olympics and translates to "Faster, Higher, Stronger". I am very interested in the Olympics, and being a Canadian, obsessed with the Winter Olympics. I can't really explain why, since I'm not the sporty type. I am was a really fast runner, and when I was in school I held the record for the 400m sprint (until my own sister broke it 5 years later), but that's really my entire experience with competitive sport. I don't ski (I have a high self preservation instinct that won't let me strap sticks on my feet and throw myself down a hill). I toboggan, but draw the line at speeds exceeding 120km/hr. (Do you have any idea what kind of nasty bonk you could get?) I can skate, but not backwards, and maybe...maybe all of my own incompetence is the reason that I find the Winter Olympics so gripping. Men and women, rising above, meeting a challenge, striving to be the best they can be. It's inspiring.

Then I got to thinking that knitting is really my sport. I got to thinking that maybe I would knit Torino. (The Dale of Norway Olympic sweater for these games. For anybody new to these sweaters, the Dale of Norway team designs a sweater for the ski team for each of the Winter Olympics.) Then I thought maybe I would just knit a Dale Olympic sweater...Then I got an idea. (I know, I know. Everybody gets scared when I get ideas.) It came to me.

The 2006 Knitting Olympics

Eligibility: Any knitter who, embracing the "Citius, Alitius Fortius" ideal, would like to challenge themselves while embracing the Olympic spirit, and is just whacked enough to play along with me.

Concept: You must cast on a project during the Opening Ceremonies of the Winter Olympics (Feb 10)- and finish before the Olympic flame goes out (Feb 26). That's 16 days.

1. The project must be a challenge for you to complete in 16 days.
2. There are no rules about what a challenge would be. Like the real Olympics, there are many areas to compete in. If you are a new knitter, then a garter stitch baby sweater might do...If you are experienced, well. I've already considered Torino. Use your own conscience.
3. While this is intended to be somewhat difficult (like the Olympics) it is not intended to ruin your life. Don't set yourself up for failure. (Olympic athletes may cry, but they do not whine pitifully, sob and threaten members of their family with pointed sticks because they haven't slept in five days. ) This is intended to (like the Olympics) require some measure of sacrifice, and be difficult, but it should be possible to attain.
4. No casting on before the flame is lit.
5. Finish before the flame goes out.
6. You may swatch before the games. (I consider this "training.")

The Knitting Olympics has only a gold medal. (There is only do- or do not.) Finishers get a gold medal button for their blog, their name entered into a draw for a chance at a prize from me, and the joy of knowing that they are an Olympic level knitter, no matter how experienced they are. You are only competing against yourself. (Well. And the Olympic schedule.)

Who's in?
If you're just crazy enough itching to be part of the Knitting Winter Olympics, leave a comment (or send an email) telling me who you are, what you're knitting and a link, if you have one. I'll list you in the sidebar. Consider carefully. Done right, this will suck up 16 days of your life and be an epic work.


(Crappy button made by yours truly. Really good button for finishers will be made by Franklin. Feel free to swipe and save to your own server.)

What am I knitting?
Hardangervidda. (I fully admit to choosing this because "Danger" is in the name.) How's that for a challenge? I figure that if I'm going to propose that you all take this on, that I set a fine example of being so completely out of my mind it's almost scary embracing the ideal.

16 days, many knitters, one dream. The Knitting Olympics.

Posted by Stephanie at January 14, 2006 11:56 PM