Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Facing the Unexpected

Last Saturday, I sat down to write what would have been a very different post but before I'd typed even a single letter, my phone rang & I learned that my partner Dan had dislocated his elbow at the climbing gym & was on his way to the hospital.  So I abandoned that post & joined him at the hospital, where we've since clocked 19 non-consecutive hours waiting on X-Rays, CT scans, a surgery and follow-up visits, with physical therapy still to come.  Dan's bones are now all back in their rightful positions and his cast has been removed.  He's still healing from the surgery though the doctors are encouraging him to begin moving his arm again immediately to ensure that he regains his full range of motion.  Needless to say, he's a sad panda right now but he's hanging in there & trying to do as much for himself as possible.  Luckily this happened in January, when I don't usually have much work (currently I have nothing lined up till the end of the month) so I can be around to help him out.  The toughest part will be the fact that he can't drive for quite a while, though we're lucky in that a colleague of his lives in our neighborhood & has offered to drive him to & from work once he goes back.  

At the very least, the 12 hours I spent waiting for Dan to go through surgery afforded me plenty of time to work on the second sleeve on my Central Park Hoodie!  It's almost halfway done!  The main color is KnitPicks Wool of the Andes in Currant.  I'm knitting the cuffs & button band from a DK-weight wool yarn (held double) that Dan's sister gave me a few years ago since one of her colleagues owns the sheep it came from!

Unfortunately it's pretty rough & just knitting these 4" of the cuff really hurts my fingers.  Luckily, I screwed up the first sleeve by forgetting an increase, which I didn't realize until I was about 6-8" past the mistake.  So I elected to leave the mistake in & just keep knitting until I had the right amount of stitches.  So my sleeves will need to be cuffed but that means the rough yarn will be folded over & will never have to touch my skin!

The only other concern I have about this pattern is that I ordered enough KnitPicks yarn to make the 32" size then realized I really should make the 36" size.  So on the suggestion of a friend, I introduced the contrasting cuffs & button band & have been hoping for the best.  Now that my sleeves use more of the main color than I was intending them to, I've really got my fingers crossed.  I've even ripped out my gauge swatch, washed it & have it drying right now in order to have every last inch of yarn available to me!

In less dramatic news, I recently got to spend some time with Erin of Doublepointed as she was passing through Seattle on a Northwest Tour anchored by the MLA Convention that took place here.  I have to admit, I had no idea what the MLA Convention was before she enlightened me, which just goes to show what different worlds we all live in based on our careers.  The terminology, politics & culture that goes with video production, which I'm totally acclimated to & which has shaped my personality over the 6 years I've been doing this, is completely alien to someone outside that world.  The same can be said about how unfamiliar other careers & their cultures are to me.  We immerse ourselves in these worlds for at least a third of our lives & spend so much time with other people who do too that it's easy to forget what isn't common knowledge.  It's very interesting to get a glimpse into another world every once in a while.

I also got to share the joys of spinning on a wheel with her, which she picked up quickly.  I started spinning on a drop spindle about a year & a half ago then got a wheel for Xmas last year from Dan.  While the wheel definitely can not be beat for speed, I still like how portable my spindle is.  And perhaps this is just my level of expertise, but I can spin much more even yarn on a spindle.  I also haven't mastered spinning fingering-weight yarn (or in fact, anything thinner than worsted-weight) on a wheel yet. 

Next time I'll share some photos of a massive knitbombing that has graced downtown Seattle for the past few months along with a link to an interview with the fiber artist, conducted by a fellow Seattle-based knitting blogger.  I'll also detail my first experiment with felting, which, incredibly, had absolutely nothing to do with my knitting!


Beazle said...

Your sweater is looking great! Cass sometimes soaks knits in hair conditioner to help take the itch out, maybe that will help your cuffs?

I'm loving your blog, keep it up! Hope Dan gets better soon.

juniperjune said...

thanks so much for hosting us -- it was great to see you! i hope dan is feeling better by now. :(

V! said...

It was great to see you too & awesome to have you here! Dan is doing much better, thank you! He got his stitches removed & is doing almost everything for himself again, with the exception of driving. That is still quite a ways off, especially since his car doesn't have power steering!