I Hate All the Knitting

Ok, so maybe I don’t hate ALL the knitting, but mostly, yes I do hate it right now. My niece came in my knitting TV room and counted 15 balls of yarn I have with me.  I think it’s a fair assessment that I am annoyed with about half of them right now.

 

I brought yarn with me to start the Cascade Knitterati Afghan. I had purchased yarn for another afghan a couple of years ago and didn’t finish it. I thought this would be a great chance to repurpose the yarn.

 

Casting on tonight. #KnitterartiAfghan #Cascade220Superwash #KnittersOfInstagram

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With a Side of Cod

Early next week in a Toronto court room a fisheries drama will play out. While not the normal or expected backdrop for a fishery focus, many eyes and ears will be listening for what decision will be rendered. It’s been a bit of a pre occupation for the inshore owner operator fleet so it was on my mind when I sat down in the airport in Toronto for lunch. It seemed a good omen when I saw this on the menu:

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The story is familiar; the benefit of the resource is moved away from those who actually fish and their coastal communities to those with less attachment to the ongoing state of the resource.  Fish is a commodity; not a way of life.  Those in that way of life tend to not have the resources (political or financial) that those in the commodity market do.  They’re left on the side lines and their community and livelihood is taken from them bit by bit.
Today the Standing Committee on Fishieres and Oceans released a report on changes made to the Fisheries Act in 2012. Recommendation 29 in the report is that the Minister may specify conditions supporting social and economic objectives in addition to conservation under the authority Fisheries Act. And really, that’s what owner operator is all about: protect the thriving social fabric of coastal communities in rural Canada.  Support a fishery that produces good, middle class jobs in those communities.

 

So we wait for a decision on whether a contract to circumvent policy was valid. So while the main participant appeared to get cold feet last month and then warmed them up again, I remain slightly in awe that someone who didn’t have enough money for a boat or licence to go fishing is being represented by one of the largest law firms in Canada. But what do I know; I think I’ll just go read a Committee report and eat some more cod.

 

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PS – If you want to support owner operator fisheries in Canada, hop over to this website and sign the letter.

Who’s Training Who?

A week or so ago I started letting Charlie out without tying him, just for short periods to get him used to be off line but staying in the yard. I took this sweet photo of him late this afternoon:

Doesn’t he look innocent just sitting watching the world go by?

Then, I realized what he was doing; he’s waiting a few minutes to bark to come in because when he comes in he gets a reward (treat) for coming. We’ve now done this 5 times in 2 hours.  And right now?


Yup, he’s waiting on the next one.

 
I’m guessing to train a dog you should be smarter than him… **sigh** …got to run, there’s his bark to come in.

Valentine’s Day Dishcloth

It was pretty clear heading into the weekend we would likely be facing some sort of snow day on Monday. By Sunday night blizzard warnings were up and the province (at least the southern part) shut down. With that in mind, it seemed like a good chance to knock out another dishcloth.

 

The Knit Picks pattern this week was the very appropriate Perfectly Preppy Washcloth. As I started knitting, I came to a realization: I had never knit intarsia before. To be honest I was never completely sure that there was a difference between that and fair isle (I thought it was just a fancy-smancy word for it.) However, a quick google search later I realized it was different; I’d never knit it before; and I’d clearly be weaving in a lot more ends than I generally like (again.) (Vogue Knitting defines intarsia as a colorwork technique in which blocks of color are worked with separate balls of yarn or bobbins. The yarns are not carried across the back of the work between color changes and must be twisted around each other at each change to prevent holes in the work.)

 

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One of the things I like about dishcloths is the opportunity to try techniques without a huge investment of time or yarn. They generally only take a few hours and any mistakes are just going to be used to wash dirty pots anyway. My transitions between colours aren’t great, but they did get better as I went along. I did discover that snow days apparently completely impede by ability to count (hence the wonky side of the heart) and my ability to rationalize how many balls of each colour I would need (the fact I need three strands of white, two pink and three blue at one point blew my mind).

 

All in all, not bad for a first project. It may not become my go-to for colour work, but I will be more confident should I be faced with it in the future. And after untangling yarn for what seemed like half my knitting time, I’m thinking bobbins would be a wise investment.

 

Pattern: Perfectly Preppy Washcloth

Yarn: Knit Picks Dishie in Swan, Azure, and Begonia

Needles: Knit Picks Marblz Interchangeables US 6/4 mm

 

Why a Toolbox?

For some reason one of the bureaucrat expressions that seems to be increasingly popular generally contains some reference to a “toolbox”. This expression is probably one of my least favourite* because it feels meaningless; it’s become a catch all phrase that is a crutch for people to feel like they’ve reached a solution:

 

  • “We need to develop a toolbox so that when the stock reaches the lower reference point we have a suite of tools available in the toolbox to appropriately respond.”
  • “We need to make sure there is a toolbox of applicable actions to deal with the situation.”
  • “We are developing a toolbox to address the situation and it will be available online.”
  • “Was a toolbox meeting held?”
  • “We should look in the toolbox and see if there is a screwdriver”**

 

Perhaps a toolbox makes sense to some people but really I think what we need to develop is a knitting bag. I mean think about it: a knitting bag can deal with just about any situation and is so much easier to carry.

 

  • You need to know if you’ve reached the random measurement – grab your measuring tape (assuming you can find it).
  • You need to remember where you are – grab a stitch marker.
  • You’ve fallen below the lower reference point – grab a crochet hook and pull that stitch back up there.
  • Not sure if your solution is the right size – grab your knitting needle gauge and see where it fits.

 

I’m sure similar things could be said about toolboxes; they will likely contain a measuring tape more frequently than my knitting bag does. I understand the functionality of a hammer and saw though wrenches are still a bit beyond my capacity. I’m sure there’s rationale of why there are so many freaking different kinds of screwdrivers that makes sense in someone’s world. I tell myself it’s like different kinds of needles though I remain skeptical.  And while I will never dispute the multi-purpose functionality of a roll of duct tape, I truly believe that overall the tools in my knitting bag will be more applicable than those in any toolbox, real or metaphorical.

 

Now to convince fishermen…

 

* “Low hanging fruit” remains my all-time least favourite.

** That last one may have been me trying to fix a scrapbook.