Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Second Sock Struggle

I'm one of those knitters with a basketful of single socks. The completion of a pair of handknitted socks is, for me, always a long -- really, really long -- time coming. One and a half cute intarsia socks have been sitting in my closet for close to two years, for example. Pathetically, even tiny baby booties present me with this same struggle with the self--the Second Sock Struggle.

To be fair, I do always finish the pairs eventually... it's the honor student in me. Even the closeted sock and a half mentioned above will probably have a long weekend devoted to their completion someday. But it is always an internal battle. As soon as I finish the first sock (or bootie, or, hell, mitten), the temptation to start some other project is enormous! (The cable-knit glove--note the singular noun--I made for Ben last winter is a heartbreaking example that downright haunts me.) The challenge and the giddy excitement disappear once the first of two symmetrical (or, worse, identical) items materializes, finished. (For proof, see my list of works in progress. Many unfinished pairs of things are documented there.) Sometimes I can't believe the vague despair I feel at the thought that I have to knit another one, or the eager exhilaration I experience while planning my next project. Planning the next project, though, is generally at the expense of the Second Sock. The pathos!

Hopefully I can get over this particular instance of Knitter's Defeatism. Here is the first bootie of, lord willing, a pair I'm making for the new baby of a grad school friend.


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