A Swing and a Miss

I don’t really get baseball, but I do appreciate that the game offers some life lessons. Like nobody bats a thousand.  (I think it should be “nobody bats a hundred,” but I’ll let that slide. Slide – get it? Ha!) And when it’s important, you should get three tries. I like a game that understands you might need a couple of swings to get there.

Anyway, knitting. I’ve invested hours and hours and hours in a scarf in honor of one of my favorite movies: Labyrinth.  It’s complicated.  Double knit, but with different designs on either side (yes, that can be done – it looks like magic, and in a way it is).  In my imagination, it is beautiful. A legacy project.

I searched for the perfect yarn. One fine day, I found something I loved, a mohair/poly blend in the right colors (shades of brown), lace weight for delicacy and intricacy, and with tinsel or something running all the way through it, so it sparkles.  As an added bonus, it’s fuzzy, which I hoped might add a soft romantic look. I waited impatiently for my order to arrive from New York. All good so far. In baseball terms, I had the bat in my hand, my hat on backward, I was taking my stance, squinting at the sun and spitting whatever it is the batter spits. Time to take my shot.

I started on the project.  It was clear it was going to take a very long time to complete. Like I said, it’s a super complex pattern. It started out well.  But then, well. The worm (you remember the worm? “Come on in, have a cup o’ tea; meet the missus.”) – the poor worm did not look the same knit as he did on my pattern. He lacked definition. I kept going, thinking maybe I could use duplicate stitch to make some corrections, clear up the muddy look.  But as I knit, more and more of the motifs I had made were showing problems. Some look great. But many of them look maybe more like haystacks than Ludo, or the wise old man in the talking hat. I decided, even though the scarf was striking out, that I needed to follow through, so I could look at all the designs and see what needs to change for next time.

Now it’s done, my poor first attempt. Not worth showing to anyone yet. But that’s ok. I’m going to hang it up across the room and look at it; I’m going to examine it up close, I’m going to take pictures, with a ruler. Then I’ll put it away for a while, then look at it fresh a last time, and then I’m going to pull it apart and take another swing at it.

I feel philosophical about this.  It’s OK that a first attempt with a new yarn and a complex technique did not come out quite perfect. Holy cats, who’s perfect all the time? Nobody! So I have to re-work the pattern.  I’ll do it.

It’s OK.  Really, it is.

If I gave up every time I hit a snag, I wouldn’t be a crafter person thingy. So, hey batter, batter, batter – I’m going to swing with all my might this next time. And if I miss again, well. I have one more try before I strike out, right?


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