Monday, August 11, 2008

Olympic Support Team Roles and Responsibilities

Ravelympics Support Team Roles and Responsibilities

Dear Ravelympics Support Team Member,

You have ‘volunteered’ to be on the support team of a Ravelympian. We understand that your participation may be under duress but we thank you anyway. Below please find an outline of what you are expected to do during the games.

1. Provide moral support. At times your Ravelympian may become frustrated and/or stressed. Signs are cursing, throwing the pattern to the floor in a huff or angrily ripping out rows of knitting. When this happens, tell your Ravelympian that he or she is a good knitter and is totally capable of this project.

2. Provide first aid. If your Ravelympian’s shoulders, neck, back, hands get sore, provide immediate massage. Bonus points if you do this at regular intervals without the Ravelympian asking.

3. Administer legal drugs. Although Olympic rules on the intake of drugs are of course very strict, some substances are allowed. Keep your Ravelympian well supplied with chocolate and caffeinated beverages.

4. Be patient. Your Ravelympian will probably be neglecting other activities in favour of knitting. Time is of the essence in the Olympics. Refrain from commenting on the untidiness of the house or the unkemptness of the Ravelympian’s hair. It is only for a few weeks.

5. Do not mock the Ravelympian. Olympic athletes are sometimes known to go to great lengths to achieve victory. Should your Ravelympian begin exhibiting behaviour you might call “crazy” such as knitting while crossing busy intersections, smile while guiding him or her out of traffic

6. Set boundaries. While it is understandable that your Ravelympian wants the glory of Olympic success, he or she may become blinded by this goal and unable to think rationally. Watch out for signs that the Ravathlete has ceased to sleep or eat and act accordingly.

7. Stand-by for emergencies. During the Ravelympics, your Ravelympian may suffer equipment failure. Should this horrific event occur, volunteer to run to the yarn store to procure replacement needles, yarn etc. Put the yarn store number on speed dial.

8. Provide easy access to sustenance. Your Ravelympian will not want to lose precious knitting time to cooking, or, possibly to eating. Provide access to quick, easy meals. Finger foods are a good choice. Have a selection of take-out menus on hand. Extra points if you are cooking for the Ravelympian

9. Praise the knitter. Frequently tell the Ravelympian that he or she is doing great and the project is beautiful. A boost of confidence goes along way

10. Be the official photographer. He or she doesn’t realize it now but your Ravelympian will want documentation of this madness at a later date. No really, trust me.

11. Love the Ravelympian no matter how crazy he/she may get

What you get in return

Being an official Ravelympics Support Team member can be rewarding. In return for your efforts you will receive:

1. The love and appreciation of the Ravathlete.
2. The knowledge that you have helped the Ravathlete achieve greatness
3. The return to sanity (or something resembling it at least) once it is over
4. A card to play during any future negotiations (use wisely)

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Olympics Day 3

I suffered an Olympic setback before I even got started. I was staying in Vancouver Thursday after exams so in preparation to cast on at 5am, I packed up my yarn and needles. The pattern was already in Vancouver. Alas, I had forgotten that the CPH actually starts off with smaller needles, which I didn't have. This is the problem with so often being separated from one's army of knitting supplies. So I ceremonially cast on at 5am, knowing that I'd be ripping it out once I procured the right needle. Like a dedicated Olympian, I went to dressew on my coffee break. I managed to knit about two inches on Friday at lunch. There was no evening knitting because I went out for a lovely dinner. (There's a funny story about that to follow).

I did get quite a bit of knitting accomplished yesterday though. The pattern is nice and easy to memorize. Today I will be joining the Terminal City Yarn Wranglers for the biweekly meetup, the first one I've attended since summer semester started. Progress photo:

Not at all knitting related but it is kind of a funny story. To celebrate surviving the semester, my boyfriend took me out to a nice dinner Friday night. I just bought a new dress for a friend's wedding so I was going to wear that. Well I went to put the dress on on Friday, 30 minutes before I had to meet him at the restaurant, and the zipper broke. Like really broke, zipper was in the middle of the dress, not moving at all. In fact, I could barely get the dress off! What to do what to do. So I quickly went out and bought another dress. I am such an efficient shopper that I was barely even late! I would have been on time if it hadn't been for the Lions' Game actually.

And then, after dinner, I somehow forgot my purse on the bus. Eek! Knowing that the lost and found wouldn't be open until Monday, we got in a cab, raced to the end of the bus route, where the driver was calling it in. Purse was retrieved with everything in it. Yay.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Back from the abyss (aka school)

To say it’s been a busy few weeks in my world would be a gross understatement. It would be more accurate to say it has been manic. This morning I wrote what I hope was my last final ever. I hope I hope. Finally (as my mother loves to say). It has been a bit trying, attempting to juggle career and full time school and a new relationship (yea, my timing on that one was brilliant). There have been more than a few moments when I have doubted my ability to accomplish everything that needs accomplishing.

Naturally that means there’s been a dearth of knitting. I’ve managed a few rows here and there on Hanami so that I am now about a third of the way through Chart D. I stopped trying to work on Hanami though when it because apparent that I was actually knitting about 3-4 rows for every row of actual progress. Instead I’m working on a couple of koolhaas’s out of Malabrigo. I’m figuring out how to cable without a cable needle which is also good Olympic training.

Yea, since the Olympics conveniently start the day after finals are over, I’ve decided to compete in the Ravelympics for Team Canada. I am competing in the Sweater Sprint and will be making a Central Park Hoodie. The cabling without a cable needle practice will hopefully speed things up. I’m knitting it out of some blue Cascade 220 that I bought a few months ago. And now I am itching to start.

Something came home to live with me last night. A Louet S15 spinning wheel, purchased from a fellow local Raveler. I am calling this my graduation present to myself. I haven’t had time to really sit down and get to know the ins and outs of her yet but I managed to spin something that resembles yarn. I can’t wait to have more time to really practice. I think I might take a class at Birkland bros in September, now that my evenings aren’t so occupied with school.

Pictures to be added later since I am not at home. I wanted to get this up before the Olympics start. I have swatched, gotten gauge and am ready to start.