Friday, April 23 / 1:54 a.m.

New project
Got the essay finished; wrote 5000 words in 12 hours, thus retaining my title of Last-Minute-King.* Then wrote an exam. Now, back to the knitting. Still working on the roommate socks (just have to do the toes), and I've got more sock yarn from my awesome secret pal, and I have a lot of ends to weave in on the dog sweater, but I've put them all aside for the moment to knit this:

The cardigan is from Phildar's Tendances a couple of autumns ago. I'm knitting it in black merino at a finer gauge so I've had to adjust the pattern. This makes me nervous, but I'm sure I'll get over it. What makes me even more nervous is that I worked out the adjustments for the back and fronts but haven't bothered fiddling with the sleeves yet. Also, I've never (successfully) knit a garment with cap sleeves, just raglans and dropped, but I'm sure my trusty copy of Vogue Knitting and a helluva lot of graph paper will see me through.

I've got the English translations for the patterns in the issue but I'm knitting from the French - Phildar patterns are written in a pretty cool, modular easy-to-follow sort of way, and they completely change that in the translation to match the 'English' style of knitting, which annoys me to no end and can actually render the construction slightly different.

The yarn I'm using is random coned merino from the basement of my LYS. I'm not too happy with the proprietor, who when I asked about yardage, not understanding what 4/8 or 16/43 or whatever these silly machine knitting ratios mean, said "one pound is 9 50-g balls". Well obviously I know how much one pound weighs! I want to know what the yardage of one pound is, since it's clearly going to be very different depending on the weight of the yarn. Then I asked what the gauge would be, approximately, and she said "Whatever you want! I used 4.5s." Now, I know that theoretically you can knit any weight of yarn on any size of needle. But in most cases the outcome would be disastrous. I just smiled, nodded, and got the heck out of there. I'm really glad I (sort of) know what I'm doing, because the new knitters must be experiencing all kinds of frustration trying to knit sport weight yarn with chunky needles. Jeez. For what it's worth, I'm a loose knitter, but i'm using 2.75 mm needles. It's not a worsted-weight yarn.

It's the finest gauge I've ever knit a sweater with, but the sweater's actually coming along quite quickly. Some people find stockinette boring but I think it's quite soothing, and good for doing while engaging in other activities like talking or watching TV, which makes for more knitting time. So it's actually zooming along quite quickly, though I won't bother taking a photo because it's scrunched up on straight needles and since it's black, you won't see anything anyway.

Also, the store has given up selling Phildar magazines (yet they still carry Phildar yarn... unsure how they plan to work that one out), so I couldn't pick up a copy of the latest crochet mag. It's probably just as well - I think a top like that would require massive amounts of granny-square practicing first, and I just don't think I have it in me. I'd love to buy it straight off the rack, but I don't think I'd enjoy crocheting it myself.

Knitted in a movie theatre for the first time the other day, while watching La grande séduction (Seducing Dr. Lewis for you English-only types), set and filmed in Québec. It's the story of a tiny fishing village that, having lost the fish, hopes to attract a factory. In order to do so, however, the town needs a doctor, so when they find someone willing to put in a month they go to great [hilarious and heartwarming, naturally] lengths to seduce him insto staying. There was some great acting, and it reminded me a lot of the village I grew up next to [I actually lived in the national park next to the village. Raised by wolves, that's me], which can be sometimes depressing but was just bittersweet. The sock knitting detracted not a bit from the movie (except at one point when I dropped a stitch) and I got lots done. I think it's the kind of thing I could only do during certain movies, though. For example, no knitting was attempted during Kill Bill, vol. 2.

*Yes, King. King has much cooler connotations than Queen. When QEII recognizes me for my services to the British Empire, I plan to become "Sir Krista." 'Dame' just ain't my style - all I can think of is that terrible song from South Pacific.... If Peppermint Patty can get away with it, then so can I.

"All schools, all colleges, have two great functions: to confer, and to conceal, valuable knowledge. The theological knowledge which they conceal cannot justly be regarded as less valuable than that which they reveal. That is, when a man is buying a basket of strawberries it can profit him to know that the bottom half of it is rotten."
-- Mark Twain, Notebook (1908). As my undergrad career winds to a close, I find this one particularly fitting.