on knitting and healing and other stuff

Tangled Up in Blue

Posted by Janis on August 29, 2007

silktangle.jpgThis could also be called, “What I Did on My Summer Vacation,” except the key word here is “tangled,” not “vacation.” It was NOT a vacation to untangle a skein of SeaSilk, no matter how lovely the colorway (Periwinkle), and no matter how much my saintly father helped. It didn’t even help that we were in the moutains, in Leadville, Colorado, one of my very favorite places on the planet. None of this helped because of the REASON the skein was tangled in the first place. The reason the skein was tangled was because I was lazy. And stupid. Having run out of time to properly wind the skein before leaving home on the trip (and being a little skittish about getting the expensive yarn caught in the ballwinder), I decided it couldn’t hurt to just cast on the Montego Bay scarf, maybe knit a few rows  straight from the skein. I was flush with a big victory – finishing the Lacy Kerchief Scarf and being ridiculously proud of myself – so I thought I was invincible. HA! The knitting goddesses, including my personal muse, Purl, laughed. They snorted. They smacked me down. Hard. And I paid…

To the tune of probably close to 12 hours of untangling, I paid. At the kitchen table in Leadville, in the living room, through several TV shows and a DVD of “Breach,” on airplanes from Denver to Ft. Lauderdale — I untangled, I muttered, I swore under my breath. And you know what I learned? I learned that one’s fellow passengers on airplanes do not find untangling a mess of yarn charming in the way they find my knitting a sock or some lace charming and interesting. NOBODY wanted to talk to me — let me be brutally honest here, nobody would even establish eye contact with me. And who could blame them? I looked like a very scary – if not dangerous – person.

Finally, at my in-laws’ house in Florida, I finished the untangling. Then I started knitting the “mindless holiday knitting” Amy Knitty describes in the lovely Montego Bay scarf pattern (IK Summer ’07). My mind obviously translated “mindless” to “brainless” pretty quickly, because I could not keep the damn stitch count the same 2 rows in a row. I ripped it out – once, twice, three times – I lost count of how many times. I finally realized that I was consistently leaving out the last YO before the end knitted stitches. BFD, but it made all the difference in the world to the scarf.

I cast on that project on August 9 (for the last time, anyway) and I’m still not finished. I have a sweater front on the needles as well, but I really want to be finished with this scarf so I can cast on for the Hanami Stole Knitalong. I have one more summer trip this weekend and my goal is to finish the MBS so I can have some closure and move on with my (knitting) life…


7 Responses to “Tangled Up in Blue”

  1. errs said

    I feel your pain. I started and frogged the Montego Bay Scarf more times that I care to count. I finally gave up and started the Storm Water Scarf instead.

  2. I would have spoken to you 🙂 – in fact I would have come over and asked if you wanted any help 😉

  3. ~k said

    Reminds me of the time I decided to untangle all the neglected gold chains – well, gold and goldtone (lol) – from the bottom of my jewelry box. WOW, what a lot of work. But not sure that’s even close to trying to straighten out yarn!!

  4. Paula Marie said

    Okay, I know nothing of knitting but your blog reveals two of the things we have in common – our same opinion of Leadville and the saintliness of your pop. Great photo of you both. (and I’m still giggling over becoming his girlfriend, if even for one night). lol

  5. Holly said

    Ahhh… closure in knitting life. Isn’t that a bit too much to ask for? 🙂 I am glad I came across your blog, because I have sea silk that I’m going to begin knitting soon – I will make sure not to take any shortcuts with the winding! That periwinkle is just a stunning color, so I can only imagine how tempting it must have been to go ahead and cast on. Oh, and Bandit is just gorgeous!

  6. Janis said

    See, KNITTERS totally get it! Errs feels my pain (thank you!), Maryannlucy would’ve rescued me and Holly understands that the color was worth the pain of untangling. My dear ~k — I’ve tried untangling fine chains before and all I can say is that they’re still tangled — so not sure yarn is harder at all!

  7. jillbot said

    sometimes the yarn gets a mind of its own…

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