The law of Averages

The law of averages dictates that eventually, you must get all results, and I suppose that if you’re going to travel this much, eventually you have to get this result…

but man, does it suck.

I’m here in Toronto, not in Chicago. They cancelled my first flight this morning at 9am, and when they rebooked me on a slightly later flight I went to the airport with no idea what I was in for. I’ve spent 8 full hours at the airport today, as they cancelled flight after flight after flight to O’Hell. O’Hare. I made three full circuits through customs and immigration, I picked up my bags without going anywhere three times. I sat on chairs, waited in lines, struggled through customer service and burned through an entire cell phone battery. There wasn’t even knitting time -and I still didn’t get to Chicago. Rain there. Thunderstorms there…. No planes going there.

I’d tell you the whole story, including the part where Jayme and Amy from Storey publishing and I were ALL on the phone with different agents trying desperately to get a flight to anywhere near anywhere that might work at all. I might even find a way to tell it that was funny, or hysterical or manage to generate a few ha-ha’s out of me weeping in various parts of the airport, but it’s just not funny at all. After all of that, charging around the airport as they cancelled all my flights and then announced that the weather that was closing O’Hare was going to move this way and close Pearson here, and I looked at the board and saw nothing good at all, and as Jayme and Amy and I slowly came to realize that it was already 7:00 in Chicago, with nothing on the horizon at all…. that I wasn’t going to make it, no matter what we did. That I wasn’t going to be late. I wasn’t going to run in at the last minute with a great story…. In that moment, I have to tell you that I lost any shred of something that might have resembled a sense of humour. Turns out that this sort of story is only funny if in the end, you make it to Chicago. Which I didn’t, and it’s not.

I feel just sick. Beyond sick. All those knitters sitting there, waiting for me and I can’t get there. I was, and still am, just furious with frustration, and there isn’t even anything that I can do about it, or anyone that I can blame. Mother nature gave me the finger today, and I can’t apologize enough to all of the knitters who got the shaft, and especially to Trish at Nana’s Knitting Shop, who must have done so much work to get ready for this, only to get rained out. I’m really, really, really sorry. So sorry.

Survival based

Whoa. That exploded on me. Two events piled up on top of each other like teenaged weasels caught in an illicit festival of love. I don’t think my exhaustion was too obvious, except for when I tried to check into the wrong hotel in Seattle. I knew where I was supposed to be, but somehow just staggered into the first hotel I saw and tried to believe. (Me to my friend Tina: ” How come this Sheraton has all these Hilton signs in the lobby?”) Arrggh.

Onward to Third Place Books, where there had been some sort of a misunderstanding and there weren’t enough books until Tina remembered that she had some for the Portland event back at the hotel in the trunk of her car. The events person from the store took off at a tear to get them and despite my hysteria (I was seriously upset. I mean, here I tell you all to please wait and buy the books at the events and then there aren’t any?) she and Tina saved the day and it all worked out. I was seriously flipped though. (Getting seriously flipped is a symptom of fatigue for me. This away from home thing is making me strange and worried.) Apologies to any of these knitters:



Who were inconvenienced before we pulled it together.

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, Seattle is a knitting sort of town. The place is filthy with them. There were first sock knitters:



That’s Molly, Carmel, Becky (who’s husband totally shrunk her first socks. Look at them. It’s terrible, although I believe they are still married.) Laurie, Adrienne, Fay (who totally overachieved, bringing a first sweater and socks) and finally Aubri, who’s first socks were rather wet as the result of a bookstore sink washing, the tragic consequence of a bottle of Nyquil coming open in a knitting bag. Poor knitter.)

Seattle knitters with knitters in training showed up in force. That there is Jen and the Gonzopants baby. (Who I was simply thrilled to meet.)


Katie and Evelyn, who was just a bump when last I met her.


There’s Jackie and Jake:


Emma and Olivia


Jennifer and Sarah


Sarah and Elliott (sorry I invented a different name for him) (check out his cool knitgear.)


Megan and John Henry:


Then there were knitters in training who had begun their life’s work. Sherri brought five year old Thomas and seven year old Abby, both knitters. (I bet they were bored, but darn they were good.)


This is Tracy (the mama) seen here with both her first sock and her first knitter, both coming right along. That’s Sabrina, age seven, a very competent knitter.


A little older, this is Emma, who runs a teen knitter group for her fellows.


How about McKenna? She’s our lady of the stash weasels, and a fine gal about to graduate. That sock she’s holding will be one of her culminating works. Hand spun, hand knit. Congratulations McKenna!


Farther along the knitter continuum, there’s Anne Marie (she won one of my contests a while ago. That scarf is what she made with the yarn I sent her.) She’s awesome. I’m so glad she won.


Karen brought me a Breastfeeding Activist (that’s a lactivist to you ma’am) washcloth (I love the way these are starting to be about causes as well as states) and Heather made sure that I had Washington covered.



(Remind me sometime to tell you what I’m going to do with all these washcloths. It’s awesome.)

This is Cheryl. Check out that Addi turbo. Damn. When bad things happen to good needles.


Rabbitch (we are toying with changing her name to Kali) showed up. I don’t even want to discuss where she is on the continuum.


Finally, although this is in no way intended to imply where he may be on the continuum, my buddy Paul turned up, with his ever lovely companion Naomi.


They are always infinitely a pleasure, and I look forward to seeing them every time that the wind blows me far enough west.



Oh, that’s not a knitter. That’s Frankie. Beloved (and actual real) dog of TMK and Mossy Cottage Ryan, darling friends who had Tina and I to dinner after the event and provided me with one of the THREE (Total. Just kill me.) meals that I have had in the last 22 days that was not made in a restaurant, hotel or airport. It was awesome, and would have been even if it had not been absolutely totally tasty (which it seriously was) and I am forever in their debt. I wouldn’t have told you that a salad and wicked homemade soup could save my sanity a couple of weeks ago, but there you have it. I love them. (Plus they had beer. I am so cheap.)

Right. Laundry is done, it’s midnight and I’m off to bed. I’ll try to post about Portland in the morning, before I go the airport, with my bag repacked, but to tell you the truth, I’m going to drop you like a hot rock if Joe has time to have a coffee with me.