Friday, May 18, 2007

Laughter tinged with hysteria

There's a lot of that going on at my lab bench these days. Every day seems to end with me sitting at my desk with my head in my hands and saying, "I don't get it." And everytime I get a result I just laugh--laugh and laugh and laugh--because they are so absurd I can't do anything but laugh. I really don't understand how it could all go so horribly horribly wrong.

The good news is that this isn't a really experiment, this is just ingredient preparation. It is the equivalent of winding a ball of yarn before you start knitting. The knitting is the experiment, the ball winding is what I'm doing now. Except, instead of a lovely, center-pull ball, I have a horrible knot. A knot that is so big and hairy and loopy and heinous that I may have to just cut the yarn and start over.

Most of what I do in lab is the equivalent of winding balls of yarn. In fact 90% of my time is winding the yarn and 10% is the knitting. I am very very sick of winding yarn. I just want to knit so I can wear my sweater.

In case you haven't noticed, I'm all about the analogies.

Anyway, keeping with the "lab is like knitting" analogy, I am basically putting this yarn aside and winding a different ball of yarn for this project. It will work almost as well, and I can't stand the sight of the previous one. The previous one is so bad, I'm considering doing the equivalent of getting new roving and spinning the yarn again. I'm going to need it for something else later, so I probably shouldn't put it off for much longer.


On to real knitting! I was having some difficulty knitting my new tank top (the pattern is from Artyarns--you can see a picture of it here; the yarn is bamboo from Southwest Trading Company and you can see a picture of it here). The bottom part is lace and I was consistently screwing it up--on the first row! Finally, last night, I got the first row (round, really, because it's knit in the round) set up properly and I am on my way! Yay! Something's working!


  1. I like the analogy - it's a good analogy. Now, if only I could do something analogous to "here, now you turn the crank on the ballwinder - slowly! - and I'll see if I can get the skein sorted on the swift."

  2. Woo-hoo! Something's working! Something's working!