Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Battle Bowl, Week 2 - Part 1

Most of the week between the two Möbius bowl classes, I spent knitting a baby hat for a baby who had arrived prematurely. It was a rush job. I didn't get around to knitting any more on the bowl until Friday evening.

I picked up the stitches as directed and knit away.

After a few rounds, I realized I'd done something wrong because it was coming out all twisted. Darn!

So I studied my mess and noticed that some stitches had been picked up from one side (does that have any meaning on a Möbius topology?) and some on the other. Ah, well, that must have been my mistake.

Tore it all out and started again, making sure that I picked up from the same "side" this time.

It still came out all twisty.

Okay, I muttered to myself, must have been because I was watching a video (Billy Elliot) as I was trying to do the deed and paying insufficient attention.

Frogged that puppy again.

Picked up the stitches again. Twisty, twisty, twisty - froggy, froggy, froggy - try again.

Knit another half dozen rounds.

It looked like an acrobat going through some pretty intense moves, so I frogged it and tried again.

Still twisty - and it was almost 4:00 a.m.

Ouch! I had to pick the Engineer up at the airport at 9:00 the next morning, so I stuffed the yarn contortion into my knitting bag and tucked myself into bed for three hours of sleep.

I did get an hour's nap between picking up my Beloved and going to class, but I was not (to put it delicately) in tip-top mental condition when I arrived at Blazing Needles.

One of the other students had finished her bowl, in multiple colors, no less. Cynthia, the owner of Blazing Needles, modeled it as a hat. It looked quite Elizabethan. Then it went into the shop washer for felting. It came out three cycles later looking marvelous.

Poo, I wanted to felt my bowl too.

"Liat, what have I done wrong?"

"You've picked up the stitches wrong, you're going to have to pull it all out."

She gave me further instructions. I replied, "But that's what I've been doing."

Ripped it out again, the yarn was looking a little shopworn, and started again. Are you counting? This was start number five (5!)

Still twisted.

Evil Language! Frogged it again.

Liat laid it out carefully on the table for me and once again told me how to pick up the stitches. I was muttering and cussing under my breath.

Try number six. My eyes were crossing. I couldn't focus on the stitches.


My growling and cussing was no longer subvocal. I tore out the errant stitches with unnecessary vigor.

Liat offered to pick up the stitches for me. I wanted to do it myself so that I would learn, but I also wanted to get the dang thing done, so I told her to go ahead.

She flattened it out on the table and looked it over. It wouldn't flatten properly.

"That's odd."

She turned it over and tried to flattened it out again. It wouldn't flatten.

She examined it carefully and announced, "I think you have six twists in it. It won't work."

I took the monster Möbius back and threatened to throw the whole mess at the rapidly spinning yarn twaddler just to see in which direction it would fly when it hit.

Liat pointed out that might mess up the lovely peacock colored silk that was being twaddled.

I restrained myself.

So I decided to make the smaller bowl to try Magic Looping a Möbius. You can probably guess how much success I had with that...

GrumpoGirl reared her ugly head and snarled at the universe. How embarrassing. She's supposed to stay hidden from view at all times. Never show her face in public. I followed Liat out to her car after class and apologized. Liat was gracious. Thank you Liat.

But now it's getting late and this post is getting too long. I'm going to finish this sordid story tomorrow night.

(So who you think is gunna win this battle - GrumpoGirl or the Monster Möbius?)


KC said...

I'm thinking you will do it eventually. If it were me it would have been more than Grumpo Girl...I would have been a raving b---- and threw it in the trash, needles and all!

Wunx~ said...

I don't believe you have a raving umm... termagant... in you. Nope, don't see it.

Liat said...

Oh, my heart swells with compassion for you reading this post! At the same time, you are such an entertaining writer that I can't help but enjoy the story! (I swear I didn't do it to you on purpose!) Rather like a singer/songwriter friend of ours - every time he goes through a breakup he writes amazingly inspired songs. We love it! But I digress.
You are a wonderful author, a talented and intelligent knitter, and you warm my soul. Thank you for blogging about the moebius... and for not killing me on Sunday!! You are a saint. hugs - see you soon.

Wunx~ said...

Thank you so much, Liat. Actually, if there's a saint, it's you for putting up with GrumpoGirl. I think I'd just twisted the thing so many times that it didn't know how to untwist.