October 6, 2006

On the having of standards

I did a quick perusal of my August and September entries and it appears that in two months I’ve completed two socks, frogged one other, stopped knitting another sock after part-frogging it several times, finished a hat that was already 2/3 complete and started on another hat - a hat that I’ve already started, frogged and re-started three times. I do a lot of frogging.

I think I’d like to spend less time ripping shit out and more time finishing things.

In the meantime, I’ve decided I should rename my blog. From now on librarian-in-training should be accessed via i-rip-shit-out.blogspot.com.

I wonder if this penchant for starting, mangling, then not finishing projects means:
1) I need to improve my knitting skills, or…
2) I need to lower my standards

Doubtful? Work with me for a minute.

Option 1: It’s possible I’m just a really crappy knitter. I’d be ok with that. It’s also possible that I would be a much better knitter if I could just get over my aversion to gauge swatching. Unfortunately, I’m pretty sure that won’t change any time soon.

So thankfully there’s also Option 2: it could be that my standards are too high. If I could just abandon concepts like “fit” and “drape,” I would be much more successful in my “finishing projects” goal.

For example, I'm a systems analyst By Day. This means I help design, test and implement internal systems for a consulting company. A few days ago, my knitterly coworker and I were testing a bug fix on one of our systems and chatting idly while waiting for several (agonizingly slow) pages to load.

Suddenly, she looked up at me and said “IF I HAD TO USE THIS SYSTEM EVERY DAY, I WOULD DIE.”

And I said, “That’s exactly the kind of user experience we were looking for.” Mind you, this (agonizingly slow) system was considered a successful implementation! That’s the kind of standards I’m talkin’ ‘bout.

There are several other workaround options: I could try to befriend way more people, preferably people that come in way more sizes. To hell with this “normal size” group of friends I have. I want people with shockingly humongous heads and miniscule feet! Barrel chests with stubby little arms! Scrawny legs, broad heels and strangely square toes.

My new tag line can be....Misshapen? Freakish? Disproportionate? Have I got knitwear for you!

Also, my friends totally need to get with the breeding program. If baby knits turn out too big, they will always fit the recipient eventually. Selfish friends.

Seriously though, I need to fucking back off a little bit on the frogging thing. I need to remind myself that I took up knitting for fun. I need to remember that I’ve been knitting all of a year, and it’s ok if I’m not turning out sock after sock in between gorgeous lace shawls and saucily redesigned sweaters nearly every day.

I work. I’m in grad school. And I have the attention span of a hyperactive blowfly. On crack. I will most likely never be that kind of knitter.

And that's perfectly fine with me. Standards be damned.

1 comment:

teep said...

I know what you mean with the people who go off-road and create laundry baskets of new and wonderful and amazing things. I don't do that, either.

I know precisely one cast-on and one cast-off. I don't have anything approaching gauge using the suggested yarn and needles because I knit tightly. I don't knit particularly quickly.

I don't follow patterns very well. I can't stand to swatch. I modify directions without ever considering that there might be a REASON for the directions. I rarely take notes on my modifications so that, later on, I have no idea what it was that I did or why I might have done it.

But, y'know, I'm having fun with it and that's what really counts.