Today I’m taking a break from my usual writing-centric (or rant-centric) posts to babble about something completely different: hobbies. We’ve all got them. Myself, I’m trying to teach myself to knit and crochet, with the encouragement of my mother-in-law who bought me knitting needles, yarn and an instruction book for Christmukkah. How’s it going? Um…
My first attempt was quite frankly terrible. I decided to try to knit a scarf, a simple and easy first project. It seemed to be going alright until I started to notice that the edges of the barely-two-inch scarf were receding and increasing randomly. I had been gaining and dropping stitches with alarmingly careless frequency.
So I scrapped that, and forgot about it for a bit.
Then a couple weeks ago my mother-in-law gifted me a knitting magazine, which came with a free crochet hook and three skeins of the most hideously clashing yarn: sky blue, eye-burning orange and a weirdly mauvey pink. “Learn To Make Your Own Granny Squares!” it promised. I remember that my late Nana had a bag full of granny squares and various knitting needles and crochet hooks, which my sister learned to use when we were young.
“Sure!” I thought, “Can’t be that hard!”
The instructions in the magazine were written in the shorthand of knitters world-wide, which is to say it was completely unintelligible to me. “Make 4ch, sl st in first ch to make ring,” the first instruction read. First I had to decode this alien demand and then figure out how to do it, all of which only possible with help from the internet.
Seriously, how did anyone know how to do anything before the internet??
Anyways, so I eventually figured out what I was supposed to do, and tried it. My first attempt at a granny square has been termed “Crochet No. 1” by the Husband, and now sits beside his computer like a curled up mauvey-pink foetus. My second attempt was a lot more encouraging, and by the third I actually completed what can be identified as a granny square by an objective third party. Success!
Emboldened by my victory, I crocheted two more just to prove it wasn’t a fluke. Then for some reason I had the most foolish leap of logical reasoning known to man:
“If I can make a granny square, maybe I can make a hat!!”
I must have been high off of yarn fumes or something.
Using a nicer dark green yarn my mother-in-law gave me, I try to crochet a hat modeled on the methods of a granny square. I stitched in circles, building upon each row as I went. After a little while, however, I noticed that my “hat” has a rather protruding centre, a “nipple” if you like, from where I had started building stitches around a chain.
“Eh,” I muttered, “who cares if my hat has a nipple.”
I continued. Remember when I mentioned before about my problems in gaining and dropping stitches randomly? This happens. Frequently. I now have an uneven and wavy-edged areola to match my nipple. Stubbornly, I persevere. Hours pass. Eventually I look down at my creation and go, “This is not a hat. I’ve done something terribly wrong.”
So now I have a dark green crocheted boob coaster.
After that fiasco, I decided rather intelligently to resume my original, and more sensible, goals and am now knitting a new scarf. I’m counting my stitches and everything.