Once more with feeling

Blogging from the dentist office, where Meg is having her post-braces dental appointment.


See how nice her teeth look? We’re both thrilled to bits that her braces are finally off. I remember when I got mine off. I showed everybody.


I’m waiting in reception where I’ve finally found a way to get promoted from “that odd patient who knits all the time” to “that odd patient who knits all the time and was taking pictures of her knitting in here this morning”


(That’s Dr. Yim. Best dentist in Toronto – also, good sport.) I also taught the receptionist to knit. She’ll have a sweater by next week. The gleam in her eye was very indicative. She’s hooked.


This here is the second go around on the Flow tank, the first attempt having been summarily frogged for a row gauge problem. I find row gauge to be a big honking pig-dog. Given a choice between getting row gauge and stitch gauge I always choose stitch gauge, and that’s what I did with this tank. Actually, to be completely honest it is as you are suspecting now. I did not count row gauge. In a moment of uncharacteristic diligence. I knit a swatch. A proper swatch. A swatch that I then washed and everything.


I had stitch gauge and so I just went ahead. My reasoning was that once you’ve cast on and begun, there is little you can do to control the width of a thing. That’s going to be stitch gauge and there’s nothing you can do while you’re knitting to make the width change except for some uncalled for increases or decreases (those don’t always end well) or the sacrificial burning of some of your best merino in a small birch wood fire at midnight under a full moon. Row gauge though, row gauge isn’t a problem. (Usually.) Usually there’s a lot you can do if you’re not getting row gauge. You can knit a few more rows or a few less rows, and then the thing will be longer or shorter. Most patterns say things like “knit 14 cm”, and you can do that whether you got row gauge or not…so I just started knitting.

That was a mistake. I didn’t read the pattern carefully enough before I started and it turns out that there are 18 rows of decreases that are supposed to add up to less than 3″, and mine didn’t and it’s all my fault and now I am to be punished and the only thing I can do at all is to accept it gracefully. Which I am, no matter what anyone told you about how much swearing there was last night. I’m reknitting. Smaller needles, achieving (something closer to) row gauge and hopefully (I think) still getting stitch gauge.

Someday someone is going to figure out why it is so hard to have both row and stitch gauge at the same time, and they are going to come up with a strategy. Something that actually works to fix the problem. Some simple set of directions that will tell you how you can have both, and when they share that with the world, they are going to be hailed as a genius and a hero. It will be like the knitters version of the typhoid vaccine.

Other business (that has nothing to do with row gauge)

1. There are still a few spots for the June 14 fun. People will likely drop on and off of the list as time goes along, so don’t not call because you think that there’s no hope. There is. 120 spots is a lot of spots, and the list will stay fluid up until photo day. To that end, if you took a spot but you find out sometime between now and then that you can’t make it…can you call Lettuce Knit and take yourself off the list so that someone else can get on?

2. WHOOPS. I just got an email from the publicist, they gave me the wrong store and address. It’s Chapters, at 2376 Princess Street, not the Indigo. I just confirmed an event at the Indigo in Kingston, Ontario for June 4th at 6:00. I’ll speak and then sign, as usual. They’re having a store celebration with live music later in the evening and stuff like that. C’mon down. It’s going to be fun. (I know. It’s always fun when there are way, way more knitters in a store than the store thinks there will be. Surprising bookstores never gets old.)

3. I was decluttering and organizing a knitting basket (a big one) and found this shawl that I was working on way back when.


I hauled it out and took it with me to Philadelphia, and now it’s just 12 rows from the end. This decluttering thing might pay off. A shawl. Just like that. (I have suffered a minor setback by leaving the pattern on Juno’s couch, but she took pictures of the chart and emailed them to me so I can finish until it comes in the mail.)

4. Spotted on the menu in the Philadelphia Airport.


Bad sign…right?