The Life and Times of Florence Knitingale

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Invisible Friends

My husband, the dear Mr. Knitingale, is a brilliant man. He is a talented scientist, respected in his field, published multiple times. All in all, a smart guy. And yet, I've come to the conclusion that he has an invisible friend. Oh, I know--it sounds strange. It seems too incredible to believe. But let me offer you the evidence, and you can be the judge:
Mr. K and I have a queen sized bed (I was going to put a photo of it here but, frankly, I'm too embarrassed to have anyone see our private little slobfest; you'll have to imagine a queen sized bed, preferably without the assorted piles of detritus around the edges). Theoretically, it is large enough for two people. This is borne out by the fact that, when he is out of town, I am able to arise in the morning and make only my half of the bed--his is undisturbed. And yet, despite this apparent truth, I regularly awaken in the wee hours to the unlovely sensation of an elbow, wedged against my kidney. Or on my upper back, pinning me to the mattress. Or in my face. Or wherever, but definitively on MY side of the bed. What transpires next is always the same:

Me: (in a gentle whisper) "Honey? Honey? Wake up!"
Mr. K.: (incoherently) "snzxlgh"
Me: (still whispering, still hoping) "Sweetie? Honey, please?"
Mr. K.: (still incoherent, apparently deep in slumber): "xnsleph"
Me: (desperate now, still trapped beneath a pointy bit): "Honey! Wake up! You're on my side of the bed!"
Mr. K.: (with the sudden clarity and authority of a college valedictorian): "I cannot POSSIBLY be on your side of the bed. I'm right up against my edge!"

(I feel compelled to insert here that, while not a tiny man, Mr. K is nevertheless not huge. He is slightly taller than I am, and has the athletic build of the runner that he is. He is NOT, in any case, the 500 pound Sumo wrestler that he would need to be in order to be compressing me into mattess fluff while clinging helplessly to his side of the bed. I'm just saying.)

In more innocent times, I would test my own bed position, checking to be certain I had not strayed onto his side, unlikely though that seemed. I stopped this after doing so caused me to roll unceremoniously off the bed and onto the floor in an undignified heap one chilly winter morning. The only comfort I could take from that whole experience was that Mr. K laughed so hard he had trouble falling back asleep. Not that I'm bitter.
A few attempts to explain to Mr. K. that he most certainly IS on my side of the bed and, further, is crushing my kidney are met with further incoherent mumblings. I'm expected to believe that he has returned to whatever deep slumber will protect him from this onslaught. Irritated, I stalk to the bathroom. On the way back, my eyes now adjusted to the light, I see the proof: he is unquestionably in the MIDDLE of the bed, arms and legs akimbo. There is not room for one of the 7 dwarves to stretch out, let alone all of my 68 frustrated inches. I am filled with righteous indignation.

Me: "AHA!! You are in the middle of the bed! I TOLD you you were on my side!"
Mr. K: " got up."
Me: "?!"
Me: "But I--but you--but--!"
Mr. K: "snzhlxt"
Me: "....snorting bed pig..." (okay, unkind, I admit. But, c'mon. It's 3:00 a.m. Even if I'm to believe that he only moved when I got up, where did he think I was going? Idaho?)

But this is not the worst of it. No. A few hours later Mr. K. can be relied upon to find me where I have been since being brutally squished awake, crouched over a wad of way too tight knitting, cranky and pale. He is bright, happy, rested. And he says: "Hi, Sweetie! Oh, you look tired. Didn't you sleep well?"
I think it is not wise to tease and torment the animals in the early hours. Particularly the sleep-deprived ones clutching pointy sticks.
Clearly, he does not believe himself to blame. This being the case, there is only one answer: an invisible friend. And not just any invisible friend, but a pushy, snorting, bedpig of a friend who sleeps between us and unceremoniously shoves both of us towards the edges of the bed without so much as a twinge of conscience. He's probably the one who snores and steals the covers, too.

On woolier topics, have you ever gone into a yarn store with the innocent purpose of purchasing some simple thing--say, a shawl pattern, or a stitch book--and, upon discovering that they did not have exactly what you wanted, realized that you were constitutionally unable to leave any purveyance of yarn without buying SOMETHING? Preferably something soft and knittable? neither. That would suggest that I am knitting obsessed, wool obsessed, out of control of my assortment of sheep-type goodness. This then:

is NOT the lovely, dreamy, foaming sea-looking yarn, that I most certainly did NOT purchase yesterday, and I absolutely did NOT plan on possibly making Icarus with it, should the teal alpaca bells ever cooperate in their transformation from block of noodles to shawl. Because I have a ton of yarn. And I have lots of projects. And naturally I do not need and so would not purchase more yarn.

This obviously could not have been me.

But it does suggest a possibility--a wonderful possibility. Perhaps, just perhaps, I too have an invisible friend. Well, think about it. It would account for a number of things....including this:

Yes, that must be it. Now, if I can only get my invisible friend to kick Mr. K's invisible friend's invisible tushy out of my side of the bed.


  • At 6:01 AM, Anonymous Marianne said…

    Samantha, I am *SCREAMING* and howling with laughter...(I'm beginning to wonder who you really are) I couldn't believe it when I read where you check your bed position...I so do that too..Bobby isn't very big either but let me tell you...he ends up with 3/4 of the bed and I am wouldn't be so bad except he radiates heat like an electric heating brick (setting on near to combust) and with my internal (infernal) thermostat being wonky..let's just say if he gets even an inch away I explode into hotflashes, they wake you up out of a dead sleep, never mind if he's actually *touching* me, I check for burn scars on myself... The really sad thing, this has gone on for so long that when he's out of town...I have the whole bed..and although it's really nice to stretch out and take some room, to really sleep? yep, I am on. my. edge. and yep, covers aren't mussed. Thank you.
    mmmmmmm that yarn looks yummy, fingers wanting to touch, lovely colour, BTW. Icarus, huh? Can't wait to see it.
    I have gone into a yarn shop and left with nothing one time. one time. and that was only because the two women I was with bought loads, and some of that was for me to knit with...But yeah, gotta leave with something, your stash looks well organized, I'm impressed, and it looks lovely...(like you could say any stash with natural fibers is not?)

  • At 9:08 AM, Blogger CarryFairie said…

    Poor Mr. K (eg)...I know of what he speaks...I'm SURE it's really not his fault...

    Oh, and SNORTING BED PIG??? Was that possibly a slight on pigs??? Were you meaning to insult ME??? I am HORRIBLY offended of course...(snigger, snort)


  • At 2:39 PM, Anonymous said…

    I followed Stephanie's link to you and was thrilled to find a Seattle knitter-blogger. I no longer live in the Seattle area, but am not so far away. Any recommendations for a good/great yarn store in the greater Seattle area?
    I am fortunate to have 2 LYSs within a 30 minute drive, but neither seems welcoming. One appears to be the owner's personal stash and customers are pounced on when entering. If one makes the mistake of saying, "I'm looking for some #1 dpns" then they are snatched from the rack, plunked on the counter and the till begins to ring it up. Make the faux pas of saying you'd like to look at some lace-weights (or anything else) and you are escorted to where they are located and then regaled with, "Isn't this nice? I only ordered 5 hanks because if it doesn't sell, it's mine!"
    The other store is a bit more helpful, as well as better stocked, but again, the bottom line is, "Get what you came for and leave."
    Neither offer classes, or offer a couple of intro classes on a semi-annual basis. Both have open knitting times, and space where you could theoretically drop in and knit, but one has only enough space and chairs for those who are already regulars and the other has a "waiting list" for the open knit night.
    I don't believe either store realizes this is the impression they give, but I've been in both about once a month over the past year or so and this seems to be the prevelant attitude.
    So, I'm looking for a store that's within the Seattle-Portland area that is well-stocked, offers a variety of classes on a continueing basis, is friendly to newcomers, helpful (ie, someone there knows how to demo stitches or techniques) and open at least 5 days a week.
    Feel free to e-mail me directly if you don't want to make a public recommendation.

  • At 6:48 PM, Blogger Ms. Knitingale said…

    Well hi, Nancy!

    So glad to meet another Seattle area knitter, too! You might also
    check out fairie knits (link on my blog); Carry is also in the Seattle
    area. As far as yarn shops, you didn't say where you've been, or where
    you live, but I can share the places I like. Weaving Works is in the U
    district. It's not convenient to me so I've only been there a few
    times, but they have a huge, huge selection and will order anything for you
    within reason. I went in recently for Frog Tree Alpaca and they had
    one ball in a color I hadn't seen before but loved. When I asked about
    it, she immediately offered to order as much as I needed. For my own
    use, I like Hilltop Yarns East, in Bellevue quite a bit. It's smallish
    and they have a limited amount of display space, but I've not had
    trouble getting what I needed, and they do keep a lot of stock in the back.
    The ladies there have been so helpful to me that they feel almost like
    family. A friend of mine has been learning to knit and says
    they've helped her hugely, even though she has purchased very little
    there. The original Hilltop Yarn is on Queen Anne, and I haven't been
    there at all. I don't know about classes because I haven't been looking
    for any, but I think they have some. I also go to the Redmond Ben
    Franklin which, surprisingly, has nearly as good a selection as many yarn
    shops (the yarn department is run by a serious knitter!), they often
    have sales (I once got 22 balls of Italian wool for $20!), and I know they
    have tons of classes as well as a knitting yoga which is free on the
    1st and 3rd Fridays of the month (I think that's right). I've been to
    Cultured Purl in Issaquah and like their selection; once again, I've
    never asked about classes but the ladies were very helpful to me. The Yarn and Tea Shoppe in the Lake Forest
    area is supposed to be pretty good, but I haven't gotten there yet. I
    hope that helps a bit. Oh, and I am currently in a brand new knitting
    group (just four of us so far) that meet on the last Thursday of each
    month. I don't know how close you are, but we are very welcoming. Let
    me know if you're interested.

    Good luck, and let me know how you do!


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