Wednesday, February 09, 2005

The past two days now I've forgotten to tell you about a funny student I had in my class on Saturday. Here's what I think happened. Friday, after class, a little old lady (about 85) came in with a pattern she'd bought at Michaels (not AC Moore) for a poncho. She was having a hard time with it, and wanted some help. She'd called the helpline listed on the pattern, and claims that whoever answered the phone said "it's a simple pattern, you shouldn't have a problem" and hung up. In any event, I looked at it for a moment and realized the problem was that she was simply visualizing things wrong. The poncho is one of those giant rectangle ones, and she was thinking she was knitting from hem to neckline, when it was actually being knit side to side. Once I pointed that out she was fine, and very thankful. She offered to pay me, but I told her no, come back for a class if you want, but that was "free advice". I think she thought I was a nice young woman that she would introduce her son to.

Saturday morning, when I walked into the classroom, there she was, with a man. The man is at least in his 50s, short and thin, balding, dressed very casually. And he apparently felt he had paid his $5 for the class, and therefore had the right to put on a show. I discovered they were mother and son. I asked what they wanted to learn, if she had any questions or skills she wanted to go over. No. None. He said "I want to learn to knit - mom's been knitting for fifty years." So I said "Okay, do you have your supplies?" and he said "No, I'm not really in the financial position to purchase needles. I'll just take notes." He proceeded to tell me a bad joke.

I begrudgingly agreed to loan him the needles and yarn I use for demonstration, since he obviously wasn't going to get any of his own. I taught him cast on, which he proclaimed "harder than it looks - now I see why people have to take lessons for this!" and once he finished that, he told me another bad joke.
Zip It
Then I taught him knit. After each row, he would tell a bad joke.
Shut Up
At one point, he did what he called a "magic trick" - he folded a paper towel into a triangle, and tore it so that when unfolded it was a star. "This is how I entertain bored trig students. Trig - that's like advanced math." Yeah. Took it in middle school, thanks. I taught him purl, and he whined about that, telling bad jokes after every row. ("To reward myself for finishing that row, I'm going to tell you a joke...." I started to explain that knitting is really just knitting and purling, it's just where you place those two stitches that give you the fabric - "it's like binary" I said. "BINARY! Now you're talking my language!!!" Somehow I guessed. Somewhere between jokes, he made a comment about how it wasn't very manly that he was knitting, and I said "Really? My husband is in law enforcement and carries a gun, and he sits in his government van and knits." About 15 minutes later, the mother asked if they could leave, and they ended up leaving the class half an hour early.
I hate dealing with people who think they're a lot more charming than they are! Still, it was a heck of a lot more fun than dealing with AC, so I guess it could have been worse!
I'm teaching Socks on 2 Circs in my knitting guild tonight, so I made a little baby sock last night as a demonstration. It's about four inches or so...

And this morning, I spun some Cormo that I bought from Jen... I think at Rhinebeck?

I'm just not happy with the hat that's coming out of the Rit-gone-Wrong yarn, it's feeling scratchy (which I of course blame on the Rit, and not any lack of quality in the spinning!) and since it's going to my brother's bald head (he had to shave for a play he's in) I want it to be very soft and cozy. So I remembered that bag of fiber, and decided to give that a shot. I'm consciously spinning it a little bit slubby - I don't want it TOO bumpy, but I do want texture. This mostly comes from my wanting a very woolen, not worsted, spin, and figuring I'll go crazy trying to make very even long draw yarn, so I'm letting the slubs in.... So far, I'm pretty happy with what I've got going there.


Hours Spent Knitting: 15
Rows Completed (of 222): 30
Estimated Time of Completion: 111 hours


Blogger Larry said...

I agree. I get way too many people who think they're cuter than they actually are. But then I get some who are cuter than they think they are, just not so often.

12:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's *too* funny! I guess you were supposed to be impressed by this guy's coming to knitting class and swoon. Didn't you find it refreshing that he didn't try to impress you by buying lots of yarn and needles? You'd think that Mom could have taught him to knit or that she might have some spare needles and yarn lying around after 50 years of knitting.

I got a great laugh out of this story. My only regret is that you didn't take a photo to illustrate the story.


1:35 PM  
Blogger Liz said...

You have the patience of a saint! I could not and would not have had the patientce to deal with someone that annoying and condescending.


The spinning is looking quite nice. I like the green/grey combo!

2:33 PM  
Blogger --Deb said...

Funny story! Oooh, wasn't he slick and cool . . . how could you resist such a charming manner??

(And, that'll teach you to help somebody for free--you get their *charming* sons thrown at you!)

3:10 PM  
Blogger Linda G said...

Amie, you were sooo patient. What a jerk!

3:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That guy is both a bit sad & funny all at the same time. Way to go for mentioning GB, the gun, the knitting needles - you better belive that this momma & the son have a good story about you!
The fiber is gorgeous!!!

4:51 PM  
Blogger vi said...

love it

5:38 PM  
Blogger Elayne said...

I'm sure my spinning worsted didn't help with my fiber either. But mine didn't feel soft to start with. I haven't gotten the hang of 'woolen' spinning yet.... have been to busy trying to spin different fibers which will be similar in gauge.

The new slightly slubby yarn looks yummy and perfect for a bald head.

6:23 PM  
Blogger Carolyn said...

PTOOIE on the weird, weird math teacher. That sounds like something that would happen to me. Sounds like you put him in his place though!

6:57 PM  
Blogger Elisa said...

So, do you think it was "husband", "gun", or "government" that got them to bail early? Whatever it was - I'm glad it worked.

I'm really interested in the tarot reading you gave me in your dream, I've been thinking about it throughout the day!

I hope your week is going well, Amie, and I hope you have a terrific weekend.


11:35 PM  
Blogger Donna said...

LOL about your students. Very interesting.

Your spinning looks great! Nice colors.

10:46 AM  

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