UK Knit Camp aftermath, and human/dog creative play

I'm working on another post about UK Knit Camp. I don't know when I'll get it finished, but in the interim I have been doing what I think is an amazing job of dealing with the follow-up stress.

Yet there have been indicators that all is not as mellow as I wish, perhaps because I've been on the road a lot and my yoga practice has been even more abbreviated than usual.


The mess is not the item on the right, which is proof that despite the fact that Ceilidh is amazingly calm for a year-old Border collie she is a Border collie. She has already removed the tennis ball from the end of her new rope toy (it took her two days: Ariel would have completed the job in less than 20 minutes). The toy still works just fine for playing tug, which is its purpose.

The mess is the item on the left. When I got the call asking me if I could get to Cleveland to tape two segments for Knitting Daily TV, I realized that my wardrobe did not meet the criteria for clothing. T-shirts don't cut it. While I have a closet full of handknits, none of them is TV-ready. They're too warm, have the wrong sleeve lengths, are in the wrong colors, or have necklines unable to accommodate a mic. (I received very detailed instructions. I will also need to get a manicure. Plain polish. That part's okay. The time and the expense of getting it done will try my patience, however.)

I thought that I just might be able to knit something in time, if I kept it simple. I found a pattern (one likely to be troublefree), buzzed over to a nearby shop and found yarn, and started knitting in my spare time. When the body was about 2 inches (5cm) along, I spread the fabric out on the bed, smoothed it thoroughly to check that I hadn't twisted the cast-on (which I'd already checked before and after knitting the first round, of course), and re-measured my gauge, which was right on. So I kept moving.

When the body was about 5 inches (12.5cm) long, I started to knit on it during a meeting and something felt wrong. I knitted a couple of rows and got that sinking feeling. I stretched out the fabric and moved the circular needle this way and that, hoping that it would straighten out into a tube. It wouldn't.

Despite my 2-inch check (I smoothed it out fully on the bed), it appeared to be true that I had managed to put a full twist into the starting row. I asked a knitterly friend if my brain was deceiving me. She said it was not. I took the object home and asked my daughter to confirm that I was seeing what I was seeing. She did.

There's no way I'll make that deadline. A friend has loaned some alternatives, but I'm supposed to have multiple choices (in case the TV stylists don't like what I offer) and each episode has to have different clothes. Fortunately, only the TOP matters. I can wear slacks that I already own. I've headed to TJMaxx and Marshall's to fill the gaps as inexpensively as possible. AARGH.

I have never missed a cast-on twist for more than one row beyond the start. It's a sign. All is not quite well balanced around here.


My recent travel book was Jon Franklin's The Wolf in the Parlor: The Eternal Connection between Humans and Dogs. It's a personal exploration by an experienced (Pulitzer-winning) science writer on some questions that began bugging him, like why humans and dogs have been hanging out together for so long and why they continue to do so. He ventures some theories that he doesn't present as more than that, and that may agree or disagree with other folks' ideas, but I found it a fascinating ramble through observation and, among other things, brain science by a smart guy who's got enough background to say interesting things.


And looking at a similar topic from a completely different angle:


News of the choreographed rock video with OK Go and a dozen dogs has been traveling around the internet, but in case you haven't seen it here's the YouTube location (3.5 minutes). It might be seen as a visual representation of some of the ideas in Franklin's book.

Here's the story behind making the video; that link has another link to the video at its top.

. . . and here, just for quirkiness, is a parody involving a cat (1 minute). . . .


13 thoughts on “UK Knit Camp aftermath, and human/dog creative play”

  1. I ordered “The Wolf in the Parlor” from my library. I am downloading the videos to watch. Saw the cat parody – totally bored cat – human silliness.

  2. Lindy, I hope you enjoy the book. I have our library's copy. I love libraries. That cat sure was tolerant–and the dogs delightfully playful and smart! I don't usually watch these things; no time. I'm glad I made an exception for that one.

    Beth: the TV segments are a challenge, because they're really condensed (5.5 minutes) and I need to assume no prior knowledge of what I'm talking about, yet I don't want to oversimplify. It took a while to work that out. Knit Camp–much good came out of it. The debris is taking a while to clean up.

  3. Aw I hate the rogue mobius manouevre that knitting sometimes pulls!a

    And I too would find the time and expense involved in a plain nail polish manicure rather trying.

    Still; I hope it works out OK for you going to do the Knitting Daily TV. I think it’s great that you are getting the info out there across all channels.

    I’ve been loving your fibre-photo styling posts and I hope the post UK-KnitCamp stress resolves itself soon.


  4. Felix, thanks for the rogue moebius concept. The “rogue” piece made me laugh. Oddly, I would be happier of the full twist actually *produced* a moebius! Then I’d think of something else to do with the results (although with a pattern with definite right and wrong sides, that’s a challenge). But the darn full-twist is just a full-twist mess-up, not a half-twist moebius. Silly thing.

    You’re right. It’s getting the info out that has me going to the nail salon (I *use* my nails, and polish/shaping usually doesn’t help me do that).

    Thanks for letting me know you’re enjoying the photo-shoot posts. And . . . well, time will heal all things, even the post-Knit Camp stress. I *do* have very fine memories of many, many folks I met there.

  5. Ooh, I’ll check out The Wolf in the Parlor. I just bought a book that sounds like it might have some similar thoughts: Play Together/Stay Together, by Patricia McConnell, whose writing on dogs and training I really enjoy. If you haven’t read her work, I bet you would like it! Her personal dogs are working Border Collies and sometimes larger guard dogs – she has a sheep ranch. I’m looking forward to reading that book this week. 🙂

    Regarding Knit Camp – hugs to you.

  6. That’s really unfortunate about UK Knit Camp: I too have heard some of the icky bits.

    Libraries are terrific, but I won’t take one of their books on a trip with me. Did once, and the book was lifted from my carry-on: had to buy a new one and received a stern warning about such adventures. I tend to stick to magazines or smaller paperbacks, as they’re easier to pack and lighter to tote.

    (I’ve got “The Culture of Craft” lined-up for my trip, and I’ll snag a New Yorker at the airport each way too.)

    “The Wolf in the Parlour” sounds like a good read though: maybe for when I get back. Have you read any of Stanley Coren’s books?

  7. Mary-Heather, I read Patricia McConnell’s articles in The Bark and like (and admire) them a lot. I have one of her books out of the library, but haven’t had time to read it.

    And Jeni, my daughter and I checked out the OK Go treadmills video–wonderful! The manicure is set for tomorrow morning. Has to be clear polish. The manicurist will be disappointed. That and ironing and gathering locks of wool will probably take care of the day.

    I only travel with library books when I am in the middle of something I don’t want to put down, Linda. Our library is also not stern. It’s co-owned by the city and the community college. I had packed a paperback as well, but removed it at the last minute because I had too much stuff. Then I read all the magazines and needed to buy a book at an airport. . .

    YES, I’ve read some of Stanley Coren! I especially like Why We Love the Dogs We Do. What a fine book. It explains a whole lot.

  8. I hope things smooth out for you soon.
    We STILL don’t get Knitting Daily on our Cable, if we did, I’d be certain to watch your episodes.

    Thank you for the musical doggy goodness :-}

  9. Stanley had a wonderful show up here for a number of years called “Good Dog” that was just hilarious: friend of mine had a wheaten terrier with a compulsive chewing problem that ended up on it. (And when they divorced, she got the dog….)

    And I’ve found the book at a library branch near me, so am off to pick it up today: it will give me something to read in between my KAL Ravelwealth Games project before I go (at least something that isn’t a grant application or show proposal!).

  10. Diana, we don’t have cable so my access to Knitting Daily TV is limited. I have found some episodes available on the internet; I think the current season is broadcast (season 6, which I taped for, will start airing in January), the season just past is on the web, and then the shows are released on DVD.

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