Buzz (cute-and-available-to-boys) is presently employed in the men's department of the Marshall Field's at snooty Water Tower Place on Michigan Avenue. Is there, I ask you, a greater joy on earth than a buddy who can tell you when Hugo Boss is going to go on sale? Perhaps a buddy who can tell you when the cashmere yarn is going to go on sale, but we're talking shades of difference.
I arrived near the end of his shift, met his (cute-and-available-to-boys) coworker Charlie, and made him wait on me while I threatened in loud tones of voice to have him fired. Good times. Then we hung out for a bit at a coffee shop in the atrium and dished the world in general. I finished my first sock all the way to the end of the toe, with only the Kitchener left undone.
Knitters: what would you do in this situation, sitting in an uppity bistro surrounded by North Shore housewives and well-heeled bourgeois tourists? Why, you'd do what I did. I took off one boot and tried on the sock.
It speaks to Buzz's remarkable sense of empathy that he, who does not knit, did not even blink. On the contrary, he expressed great joy at my accomplishment and even whipped out his camera phone to record the moment.
I thought the starchy couple at the next table was going to collapse into a heap of Ralph Lauren woven pastel separates. Honestly, some people are too easily mortified. It's not as though I put my foot on their plate of rugelach.
The Kitchener was completed the next day, following the traditional pattern of:
- Try it once, feeling confident, and screw it up royally.
- Undo it at the rate of three vile oaths per stitch.
- Turn off the television, the computer, and the phone; draw the shades; arrange seven reference books on the table; take a deep breath; and get it done right.
- Try it on. Dance around. And around and around and around and around.