(Which is either a direct term, or a paraphrase from "Fawlty Towers," one of my all-time favorite shows.)
Today I had one of those experiences that make you think to yourself, "Duh." This one was related to knitting. I walked down to Sophie's Yarns during my lunch hour, because a) it's less than a 10-minute walk, b) it was a pretty day, c) I wanted to pet the cat that lives there, and d) it's yarn store! There was a woman there, who had laid out several afghan squares of varying colors and patterns, and was working on joining them to make an afghan for an upcoming auction to benefit one of the elementary schools nearby. (On an unrelated note, remember when elementary schools were grade schools?) Anyway, she was making slow but steady progress, and when I commented on how nice the individual squares looked, she said that different customers had knitted different squares, and she had come in to put it all together.
And do you know what she was using to do it? Well, instead of trying to find a color that would coordinate with the various shades of the blocks, or using the ever popular goes-with-everything-black, she was using a subtly shaded variegated yarn. The really intriguing thing was, that of the pieces she had already worked, the yarn looked really great, like it had been individually chosen for each piece. When I saw this, it was a light bulb moment. Because one of my, ahem, "long-term projects" is a block afghan, and I've always wondered once it was finished how I'd decide what color to use to put it together. I had sort of assumed black or dark brown, which would be fine. But [someday] when I actually get to the point of finishing it, I think I'll at least consider variegated yarn.
You're probably thinking, wow she's a real rocket scientist, but it was a revelation to me ... and I can't wait to tell my friend Sharrie, who usually experiences these "Duh" moments with me. Inevitably, one or the other of us will see something, and be amazed at what a good idea it is, and then realize that it's, well, bloody obvious!
You may remember that I mentioned last week that Tim had brought home a copy of The Natural Knitter: How to Choose, Use, and Knit Natural Fibers from Alpaca to Yak, by Barbara Albright. Well, I loved the book! And rather than reinvent the wheel, so to speak, I encourage you to visit Carol's blog, and read her review, because she says it all much better than I could. The book is not just a great read, it's aesthetically very pleasing, sort of like a coffee-table knitting book, if you will. One thing that is encouraged is taking advantage of the numerous small farms, companies, etc., who are trying to be socially conscious while providing quality products. As a matter of fact, she advocates trying to find the places that are local, not just for the convenience, but as an act to preserve the environment. A couple of days after that, a friend sent me this link: http://www.localharvest.org/store/wool.jsp, which is not just fun to browse, but will let you take a look to see what's near you, or just out there in the universe if you are interested.
Moving to yet another topic, it seems that everyone is wearing their thin skin these days. I've noticed in some of the knitting blogs I have read this week, both bloggers and some of their readers seem to be taking things very personally. I even read a comment on one blog where the commenter said that they "shouldn't have to read this kind of trash," because they disagreed with the blogger's opinion. Which begs the question, was this person being forced to read the blog at gunpoint, and threatened with immediate death if they held a different opinion? I read, hear, and watch a lot of stuff every single day, and unless it's something that I am required/obliged to pay attention to, I just skip the things that don't really interest me, or that upset me, or that cause me such aggravation that it's not worth it.
On another blog, someone was criticized for saying that they really enjoyed working with yarn that had some silk content. In the comments to that post, several people seemed to take offense because they didn't like/couldn't afford silk yarn, and accused the blogger of being a yarn snob. (I always suspect that these are the same people who are always making prounouncements like, "Well, a knitter would never do/say something so unkind. Knitters are nicer than that.")
Anyway, it's just an observation on my part. And if it offends you, well then stop reading ...
I noticed that this is my 99th post, which means the next one will be number 100 ("Duh"). Who knows what golden nuggets I'll have to dispense in that one ... I mean, anything could happen!