Friday, May 05, 2006

Knitting ambassador to the world

Yesterday, on the Green Line, heading into the city after work to go to a panel discussion on careers in new media .... I was sitting at the end of the car with one empty seat next to me and one behind. The doors opened and a family got on - parent, three kids.

Two of the kids sat down near me, a boy next to me and a girl behind. She promptly stuck her head over the seats and said: Are you knitting a sweater?

ME: No, I'm knitting a sock. See? (holding sock up cuff down). That's the cuff and I'm knitting the part that covers the ankle.
BOY: How do you do that?
ME: Um, well, there's only a couple kinds of stitches in knitting, and when you combine them, you get all sorts of patterns. (Move hands so he can watch me knit more closely.) You're just pulling loops of yarn through other loops of yarn with the needles.
GIRL: Are you done yet?
ME: Oh, I've still got to knit a heel and the whole foot of the sock before I'm done.
BOY: Do you ever knit sweaters?
ME: Sometimes. But I like socks because they're small and I can put them in my bag when I take the train. Sweaters are bigger, so I usually knit those at home.
BOY: Did you learn this in school?
ME: I had a friend teach me. We both had a job where you had to sit around a lot and she figured at least I could do something useful with my hands. I like to knit on trains or when I watch TV. (Thought maybe was bad idea to tell impressionable youth I knit at stoplights, too.)
GIRL: Hey, give me your seat. I want to watch! (She and brother change seats)
BOY: (leaning forward) How do you make the heel?
ME: Well, there's a couple ways to do it. I'm going to knit a flat flap, like a rectangle, and then change the direction I'm knitting in, so it makes an elbow, and then that's where the heel goes. (Gaah! How do you explain a heel to a non-knitter?)
GIRL: Are you done yet?
ME: Nope, still not done.
BOY: (to third kid) Hey, come over here, she's knitting socks!
BOY 2: So you don't buy any socks? You just make them?
ME: Sometimes I do. I don't always want thick socks, and these can be thick.
BOY 2: Is this your job?
ME: Er, no. I have a normal job during the day. I just knit for fun.

(Recorded train voice: State and Lake ....)

ME: Ooops, my stop. Take it easy, guys.


Sockbug said...

How cool is that! You've gotta love kids, they don't say things like "you could get those a lot cheaper at Wal-Mart." I like that the boys were interested, too!

meg said...

Yeah, I liked that too -- how they didn't seem to think that this was something only girls did.

Aprilynne said...

Sock knitters unite! We can take over the world, one impressionable onlooker at a time, bwa ha ha HA

Franklin said...

Oh, bless your heart.

Smart kids, too. This gives me hope for humanity.

LB knitter said...

and I thought I was the only person who knit at stoplights (only knit stitch, officer, and I can do that in the dark at the movie theater so my eyes are always on the road - really.