I chose mostly to knit and to draw.
I'll pause for a moment so that you can get over your shock.
On Sunday I decided to head out to a local coffee shop to work on the edging of the lace sampler stole. Don't ask me to justify this impulse towards coffee shop knitting, when I could perfectly well knit at home where the chocolate milk is cheaper and baby strollers are verboten. Must be a city boy thing. I like to people-watch. As repellent as I usually find the public en masse, individually it's often fun to spy on them over the top of whatever I'm knitting.
I decided last week that the lace sampler stole was officially long enough (translation: I'm sick of it) and that it was time to try my first knitted-on edging. After a brief flirtation with Alpine II from Heirloom Knitting, I ripped back and switched to Doris.
As all of you know who don't knit only in the living room with the shades pulled down, doing your thing in public not infrequently leads to questions. So I wasn't alarmed when the distinguished older (mid-70s, I would guess) gentleman in the tweed jacket leaned over and asked, "Is that knitting?"
I won't record the bulk of the ensuing dialogue because you can already guess most of it.
Yes it is. What are you making. Lace sampler. Hard to do. Sort of tricky but not really hard once you get used to it oh I would never have the patience believe it or not it's relaxing once you get used to it my aunt wilma used to make crochet doilies oh did she really yes but I never learned how but I always was curious. Etcetera.
Quite a lot of etceteras, in this case.
I started to suspect something odd was afoot when we'd reached the third or fourth logical point in the conversation at which I could have gracefully gone back to my knitting (which was literally about to turn a corner - most exciting) and he to his newspaper. But he didn't make a move to excuse himself. So, at last, I did. And he ignored it.
"I have many friends who quilt," he said.
"Ah," I said, pointedly consulting my chart.
"I think it must be wonderful to be able to make beautiful things," he said.
"I quite enjoy it," I said, trying to knit in such a way as to communicate the message, "You need to shut up now, please."
"Do you know what I enjoy?" he asked.
"I have a feeling you're going to tell me," I said.
He did. He leaned closer and dropped his voice to a husky, coffee-scented whisper.
"Jock straps," he said. "I was just across the street at that adult store and wow...they sure have lots of jock straps. Maybe you could knit me a jock strap."
First Panopticon Blog Contest Ever
I wish, my dears, that I could tell you a clever rejoinder (instead of the cookie I had just eaten) leapt to my lips. But it didn't.
Rather than tell you what I said, I want you to fill in the blank.
Pretend, for a moment, that you're me.*
What should I have responded?
Don't put your entry in the comments. Send your entry to: franklin at franklinhabit daht cahm.
In a couple of days I'll post the winner. Not sure what the prize is yet. It won't be a knitted jock strap.
*Just for a moment. Any longer, and you risk permanent injury.