Sad Facts

It’s a sad fact of life that sometimes the better team loses. My beloved Pittsburgh Penguins were knocked out of the Stanley Cup playoffs by the hated (and deservedly so) Philadelphia F%^ers in 6 games. There’s little doubt that the Pens overall have the superior hockey team, but in 4 of those games in this series, the F%^ers totally out-played the Pens and they deserved to win the series. But my boys had some stellar moments in the series, so in spite of being disappointed to be out so soon, I’m thrilled with the great season the Pens had. We’ll get ’em next year.

Three other teams are out of the running, the Detroit Red Wings, who lost to the Nashville Predators, the San Jose Sharks, who lost  to the St. Louis Blues, and the Vancouver Canucks, who lost to the Los Angeles Kings. And the Eastern Division Champs, the New York Rangers, are on the brink of elimination at the hands of the lowly Ottawa Senators, the #8 seed in the East.

I cannot help but feel a little sorry for Canucks fans, even though I dislike the Canucks almost as much as I dislike the F^&ers. Canucks fans were stunned last year when their team lost in the Stanley Cup final to the Boston Bruins, and after winning the President’s Trophy this year as the highest point getter in the regular season and being the #1 overall seed in the playoffs, they watched their team get their asses handed to them in the first round by a #8 seed. I might not like the Canucks, but I sure can empathize with their fans. I know the pain and disappointment of seeing the team you love lose in the Stanley Cup final as well as getting knocked out of the playoffs in the first round. But true hockey fans love their team no matter what. And I’m sure that most Canucks fans will recover quickly from their disappointment and heartbreak and start looking forward to next year. Their team is loaded with hockey talent, and they should be one of the best teams in the league again next year.

Fortunately for me and my knitting, there’s still a lot of good hockey to be played, watched, and knitted to. I still have several teams left in the playoffs to cheer for, the Bruins, the Blackhawks, and the Blues. What is it about the letter B? At this point, I’m hoping for the Blues to win it all because it would almost be a worst-to-first story. The Blues didn’t even make the playoffs last year, and this year they were contending for the President’s Trophy. They have a lot of exciting young players on their team, and they play a physical game with a lot of finesse and some truly outstanding goaltending from two fine goalies. I hope they do as well in the second round as they did in the first, although it might be a little difficult for me to cheer for them if they face the Blackhawks. But the Hawks won The Cup in 2010, so I think I’ll be able to pull for the Blues if the two teams face each other.

Losing is a sad fact in the life of a sports fan, and the life of a knitter is no different. It’s a sad fact of knitting life that even the best of knitters sometimes start a project only to have it end in disaster. This has happened to yours truly, Pinko Knitter. I know it’s difficult to accept that any of my projects could turn out as anything less than spectacular, but it happens. After all, I’m only human.

My attempt at knitting EZ’s Adult Surprise Jacket was an abject failure. The alleged sweater currently sits in a shopping bag in a corner of my bedroom.

ASJ

One of these days I will either unravel the damned thing or throw it away. It is nothing less than an unmitigated disaster, and I have learned the hard lesson that as much as I have learned from EZ, her knitting designs are, for the most part, nothing short of god-awful. She was definitely into utilitarian knitting, and looks be damned. But she did “unvent” some great knitting techniques, although some of her “unventions,” and here I am thinking of the Stonington Shawl, are at best pointless. My Stonington is sitting still unfinished, and I have to say that this technique of knitting a Shetland-type shawl has absolutely no advantages that I can see. Not a single one.

Unfortunately, the ASJ is not my most recent knitting disaster. But this time I have only myself to blame. As you know from my last couple of posts, I’ve been working on some scarves as charity knitting during the Stanley Cup playoffs. One scarf has been completed, but the other, the Dropped Stitch Scarf, is nothing short of a disaster. My fault alone–not the yarn, not the pattern, not the designer. Just mine. I had made a gauge swatch to help me decide how many stitches to cast on to get a scarf that would be around 60 inches in length. My swatch had a gauge of 4 stitches per inch, so I cast on 250 stitches. As I was knitting the last row before casting off, I looked at all the stitches bunched up on my circular needle and got that sinking feeling. I measured my gauge and found that I had 3 stitches per inch, which means that the scarf would be 80+ inches long. The scarf is now in my knitting bag awaiting time at the frog pond. Yes, I’m going to have to rip-it!

Dropped Stitch Scarf

But we knitters are an optimistic lot, at least when it comes to knitting. I wasn’t discouraged by my failure. Instead, I got out a hibernating scarf knitted in purple sock cotton that I knew I would never finish, ripped it out, and cast on for a new scarf of my own on-the-fly design. It’s a combination of dropped stitches and beaded rows worked in garter stitch so it will be reversible.

Dropped Stitch Beaded Scarf

The beads are 6/0 Miyuki amethyst lined crystal round seed beads, and the garter stitch section that goes around the neck will not be beaded for reasons I shouldn’t have to explain to anyone. 🙂

To be honest, I think the knitting gods knew what they were doing when they caused me to screw up the other dropped-stitch scarf because the new one, being in a lightweight cotton yarn rather than a bulky fuzzy acrylic, is far more appropriate for springtime.

When I was a teacher, I used to tell my students not to be embarrassed about making mistakes because that is how one learns. I believe that, and I believe that one is never too old to learn. I look at my knitting disasters not as unfortunate events or as wastes of time and yarn, but as learning experiences that add to my knitting expertise and make me a better knitter and possibly a better person. I plan to make more mistakes before my knitting days are over.

3 thoughts on “Sad Facts

  1. Lol! This was such a funny post! You are an AVID sports fan! The only sports my family knows are basketball and football. Unfortunately, I follow neither that closely. When my son starts talking about his favorite NBA players, I’m so glad he doesn’t see my eyes glaze over, lol! He’s my favorite basketball player so that makes things easier to keep up with in school sports.

    I think it’s wonderful that you scrapped everything else for your own design! I follow patterns sometimes. But I really like the freedom of doing my own thing too. That’s awesome! The purple looks really beautiful too. I love the beads!

    • That must have made for an interesting Stanley Cup final series in your house. I remember (although I would prefer to forget) a Super Bowl between my beloved Buffalo Bills and my son’s beloved (at that time) Washington Redskins. My son was quite young at the time, and he was insufferable both during and after the game. I still love him, in spite of his bad behavior. 🙂 ::sigh:: I really miss hockey. 😦

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