They’ll start at the same point
Wednesday November 27th 2013, 12:19 am
Filed under: Friends,Knit

Got a few left still…

I got a note from an old friend Saturday. Her twins wanted to learn how to knit. They had an adopted-grandma of a favorite neighbor who had offered to teach them, but my friend’s husband had recently been laid off and they were not spending an extra dime just now (I could relate); might I have any unloved, unwanted yarn? Or even needles?

I just might. Actually, not a whole lot of worsted weight, but some, definitely, and I went looking for it. While remembering the two big boxes I had sent off to a girls’ camp a few summers ago where quite a few young women learned how to knit, loving the wool and the mohair they got to play with. (One way to happily clear out that ’80’s not-kid mohair. They couldn’t believe I sent the real stuff. Everybody won.)

I used to knit only with straight needles.

There was the time I accidentally dropped one of those on a plane as it was ascending: it immediately rolled far, far behind my seat, somehow dodging feet and floor luggage and was never seen again. Oops.

I have this old ceramic spaghetti canister, a Costco freebie from about 15 years ago, its lid broken* and so repurposed as a container for old mostly-aluminum straights that have long gone unused–except for that big aqua one. It’s good for slicing open the wrapping on the suet birdfood from a distance without touching the eyeball-burner chili oil waiting to pounce from within.

Circular needles are good for putting the weight of the work in your lap as you progress rather than having to hold up everything with your arm and hand muscles. Straights are good for learning on.

And so I found three pairs of 5 to 5.5mm (US 8 and 9) in the canister.

And all of them insisted on coming out. And all refused to go back in.

Well huh. Well, maybe one of the twins will like the plastic ones better than the feel of the aluminums.

It wasn’t till I went to deliver two big ziploc bags of yarn, mostly worsted wool, all natural fibers, that I saw the reaction of not just the twins but their older sister. The younger girls are turning eight very soon and the older is in her early teens, the age where you can’t show enthusiasm, especially if it’s something your mom or baby sisters are interested in.

But I knew in that moment, looking at those older eyes fixed on those goodies, that clearly what we had here were three wanna-be knitters in front of me. Even if one of them hadn’t thought she would be.

And there were three pairs of needles. I had not even thought of her in terms of the knitting lessons. Well there you go.

I’ll let them work it out from here.


*When it sailed through the air and then shattered into lots of little pieces, was it being the Flying Spaghetti Monster?

5 Comments so far
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So that’s why it’s easier to knit with circs?!!! It never occurred to me that is why I prefer them to straights. And I learned on straights but once I discovered circs I never went back again, except DP’s of course.

Comment by Jody 11.27.13 @ 6:45 am

I have that same spaghetti house, lid intact; it was a minor gift from someone long ago, and now I know he got it for free and passed it off for a no-sweat answer to an obligation. Laughing. I actually use an airtight plastic cylinder canister, I may have given the pasta house away when we moved. If so, I hope it has a good home. Call yours a project planter box, what fun to start off the newbies.

Comment by Marian 11.27.13 @ 11:40 am

The needles know. Amazing how your yarn and needles just know when they are needed, even if not by you. And I keep straights for teaching, too. Oh, and when I tried to help with the record-setting in Dixon a few years ago for the most knitters knitting, the rules said we had to use straights. Unfortunately we had nowhere near record-setting numbers, but it was fun to be a part of a lot of knitters knitting all at once! And now there will be three more.

Comment by DebbieR 11.27.13 @ 12:00 pm

I can’t resist saying this. Once I was on a plane, in a window seat, knitting with double pointed needles. I dropped one between the arm rest and the body of the plane.

I was prepared to accept that it was gone forever. But then, after the plane had landed, as I exited the row of seats, there it was – in the aisle if I remember properly – waiting to be reunited with me and my knitting.

Comment by RobinM 11.27.13 @ 3:28 pm

Catching up again, after a lovely Thanksgiving trip and being dumped back into the reality of the work week, so I won’t comment on all the lovely posts. But this one, oh, this one deserves a comment. It is Essential Alison – generosity, humor, and a bit of knitting magic.

Comment by twinsetellen 12.03.13 @ 5:24 pm

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