The Life and Times of Florence Knitingale

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The Gods Must Have a Mean Sense of Humor

In Terry Pratchett's universe--which is, by my own reckoning, a superior universe, indeed--the gods don't sit and play chess with human lives. No, they play Chutes and Ladders (Snakes and Ladders, to those of you on the other side of the pond) and sometimes the ladders have been greased. I can well believe this. Consider, if you will.

For well over a year now I have been searching for a sock yarn that seemed to exist only in my fevered imagination. It was shades of rich, deep greens that would bring to mind a forest fill of elves and fairies and other mythical creatures. It had emerald and shamrock and grass colors all woven together and whatever sheep gave up his dignity for it was actually proud to have done so. Heck, he might have just stood up and offered the fleece off his back when he heard the idea for this yarn--so perfect was the combination of greens. Needless to say, I did not find it. I looked in every yarn shop, at every knitting event, in every possible place that a skein of perfect sock yarn might hide (leading me to believe that possibly the gods play hide-n-seek with us). I started to figure that the yarn couldn't exist--that my mind had produced colors that cannot exist in the real world lest the wool burst into flame from sheer hubris and be sucked into a rip in the time-space continuum.

Fast forward a few months. I am now starting blanket number 4 (about halfway through it) and have had a chance to take stock of my modest yarn collection. (Modest in the way that Brittany Spears is modest, okay, fine.) There is....a significant amount of it. There is especially a significant amount of sock yarn, and this is odd. I have checked, and I have just two feet. Mr. K is not very interested in hand-knit anything. I have one friend whose foot size I know. The cats are not interested in cunning little four-sock sets (Ed looked a bit interested when I mentioned that it might make him quieter when sneaking up on mice...but then he changed his mind when he realized the mice just might laugh themselves to death before he could taunt them to death) and no local businesses will let me pay with socks. I can only use so many draft excluders (those things you wedge under the doors, that some people think should be stuffed affairs shaped and decorated to look like weiner dogs--it is a comfort to know there is sickness greater than mine), my windshield wipers don't need covers at night, I have no use for knitted sock puppets with no faces (can't throw my voice, you know) and, although the local squirrel population does look a bit chilly, I am assured that they don't need tail warmers in a variety of bright wools.

To sum up:

1. I have a lot of sock yarn

2. I do not have a lot of time to knit

3. I have a lot of sock yarn

And being a rational adult (i.e., a whiny child who finally stomped her feet and said "Fine, I don't want the icky old green yarn ANYWAY"), I decided to cease the quest for the perfect, mythical green sock yarn. Which is when I found this on sale on e-bay:

For $12 a skein. And each skein is PLENTY of yarn to make a pair of socks. I want it so much my teeth ache.

The gods are laughing. And probably setting up the board for another round of "Torment the Humans Until they Whimper for Mercy." Bastards. So, what I need from you is reassurance that I absolutely do NOT need this perfect green sock yarn. That I will never wear the number of socks I could make from the yarn I already have. That a centipede would not wear the number of socks I could make from the yarn I already have. That you will come sit on me and smack me about the head with handknit socks if I don't give it up RIGHT NOW. Please?

If that doesn't work, please hide my debit card. And my piggy bank (which is actually a china cow at my house--the Cash Cow, of course). And my checkbook. And anything you think I could trade for yarn. I'll let you know where I live and how to get here and where I keep all of those things. Just give me a few minutes to check something out on the internet. No, no, it's not e-bay. Of course not.

Would I do something like that?
p.s. You'll notice I did not give you enough info to find it and buy it first...I said I had lots of sock yarn. I didn't say I was crazy.


  • At 9:04 PM, Anonymous technikat said…

    You simply have to buy that yarn. It truly is the perfect set of greens. Don't let it get away. The gods just wanted acceptance from you that you might not get what you want. Then when you resigned yourself, you get your reward.

  • At 9:15 PM, Anonymous MonicaPDX said…

    Re not letting us know which listing it is?

    Darned good thing... [veg]

    And hey! Stop you from buying sock yarn? Oh, c'mon. A) Socks wear out, and are you inclined to darn them? Yeah, that's what I thought. B) Sock yarn makes lots of other stuff, too. I'm thinking of a pair of fingerless mitts, for instance. And then there's lace. C) It's purty. All those lovely handpaints now! You can pile it up in a basket and call it art and just look at it. No one ever said you had to knit it, y'know. D) Except for hats and mittens and such, what other knit items don't cost you an arm and a leg's worth of yarn to make? C'mon; you're saving money buying sock yarn. (This regardless of the fact whether you make any socks or not.) E) This is the NW, and those greens look like a deep, old growth glade in the Olympic National Forest, and it'd be purely un-Washingtonian of you, not to mention un-Northwesterner of you, not to want to be reminded of one of the most magnificent places in the world. So there.

    (Do they have another lot up???)

  • At 10:03 PM, Anonymous Paula in Iowa said…

    Oo Oo, we wants that yarn. Fortunately, we don't like prowling ebay 'cause we finds too much good stuff! You can not actually have too much sock yarn. Impossible! Remember that fact! Sock yarn is honorable, trustworthy, reliable, uh, well, you know. Go get it!!!

  • At 4:56 AM, Anonymous debbi said…

    BUY IT, BUY IT NOW, DO NOT HESITATE OR ALL WILL BE LOST. (oh did you want us to talk you out of it, sorry I though you said into it) Silly me. ok don't buy it, don't need it Was that good enough?

  • At 5:13 AM, Blogger Marianne said…

    Oh, thank you Monica and Paula! and technikat in her wisdom...

    and to you, Ms.K? You'd best have done me proud and bought that gorgeous yarn!

  • At 5:32 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    What is this nonsensical saying? "I have enough sock yarn"? I do not compute.

    BUY THE YARN. You will regret it if you don't. $12? A steal. Perfect greens? Absolutely. Need it? Who cares?

  • At 6:07 AM, Blogger ccr in MA said…

    Amy just posted her No Guilt Stash Manifesto, and I think you need to read it--after you buy that perfect yarn! Don't think it will just always be there! You have to buy it now! Go!

    Oh, the manifesto is spelled out at

  • At 8:20 AM, Blogger ambermoggie said…

    you need it and it is Samhain the start of the Celtic New year. And new year means new sock yarn:)

  • At 8:24 AM, Blogger Lynn said…

    Are you meshugineh? Don't you remember that the 11th commandment, translated from the Hebrew into English, is "sock yarns don't count as stash".

    Buy. The. Yarn.

  • At 12:23 PM, Anonymous Ruth in Ottawa, Canada said…

    Buy it all, QUICK, before somebody else does...

  • At 6:01 PM, Blogger Misty The Kneedler said…

    Absolutly no way am I going to talk you out of that yarn. You're doomed.

  • At 1:19 AM, Blogger Angela Cox said…

    Pull yourself together Florence ( slaps face) now think "I need that yarn , obviously it's a perfect colour ....for errrr St. Patrick's day . There must be a holiday ...even Christmas as it is green . It could be enough to knit a shawl ..huh? You might win the lottery and have all the time in the World and then you'd be sorry. I am saying this cos I went a bit mad on E:Bay this week and won ( paid for)about six skeins I don't need but went into orbit over know a "When Harry Met Sally " moment.

  • At 8:37 AM, Blogger ~Tonia~ said…

    Well I can't tell you not to buy it since I was going to offer to special dye some for you. LOL

    Good luck with the self control. I don't have any, if you find it could you send some my way? ;)

  • At 3:59 PM, Anonymous smjames13 said…

    You MUST buy the perfect shades of green sock yarn!!!!
    If it makes you feel better....sell a few skeins of the sock yarn in your stash on ebay.


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