May 2, 2011
part of what makes maintaining my blog so difficult
is the fact that most of my knitting is secret knitting.
i rarely knit for myself, and when i knit for other people,
i usually want it to be a surprise.
i like surprising people,
i like making them happy.
the shock/smile is the face i live for.
i also generally prefer to knit for knitters
since, let’s be honest, they’re the only ones who truly get it.
finding a non knitter who actually appreciates the work that goes into a hand knit item, well, it’s like petting a unicorn.
let’s take a sweater for example.
i can knock out a sweater in about month, which is fairly quick i think.
but that’s still a lot of my free time dedicated to just one item.
i spend that time thinking about the person it’s for,
if they’ll like it, what they mean to me,
why i’m knitting it in the first place.
for me, it’s about making something beautiful,
something i can really be proud of, so the person it’s for knows they’re important to me, that i’m happy they’re in my life.
so i’m not going to waste hours upon hours of my time,
(not to mention a good chunk of my yarn money)
if the person for whom i’m knitting
isn’t gonna give a shit.
that’s just stupid.
which is why i decided to undertake this super secret knitting.
i was talking to my good friend bill about knitting one night.
he doesn’t knit himself, but i like him nonetheless.
i can’t remember what he said, precisely,
or how exactly it came up.
i just remember i’d never heard a non knitter put into words so well how special it is to have someone knit them a garment. it was simple, and to the point. and i just remember thinking,
this is a man who gets it.
and in that moment,
i knew i had to knit him a sweater.
luckily, i had the perfect opportunity;
his birthday was six weeks away,
plenty of time to knit a sweater.
so, i cast on.
just a top-down raglan.
(elizabeth zimmerman would be proud)
everything was going well until the night before his birthday party.
i was finishing a sleeve, and planned to get up early to knit the collar.
(i cannot explain to you how many times i ripped out that fucking collar.
no matter what i did, it would not come out right. tears were shed)
but something was slowing me down,
a nagging pain in my stomach.
was it something i ate?
was i just overly tired?
well no, actually,
it was the appendix stump rotting in my gut.
it’d laid in wait, a few days shy of a decade,
(i had my appendix out in april 2001)
wrapped itself up in gangrene,
ruining my sweater’s reveal.
when i was feeling better,
i tried knitting on the sweater in the hospital.
but apparently, having at least three tubes in your body,
one of which putting mega doses of narcotics directly in my bloodstream, made trying to knit kinda laughable.
i think i did laugh, actually.
when i got out, i tried again.
apparently, extra strength vicodin also makes trying to knit with any skill somewhat impossible, at least for me.
so i picked a day,
skipped my meds,
powered through the pain,
and knit the shit out of that sleeve and collar.
**some notes on the sweater: i chose a top-down raglan because, while i prefer the look of a seamed sweater, it’s just a faster, easier construction. but i did think a raglan would look best on bill. i also chose a v-neck because it think it enhances the sexiness of any man. clearly, i was right. i used cascade 220 superwash because bill is a non knitter, and while i trust him to handwash a garment, accidents happen. nothing worse than a felted sweater.