I love the winter Olympics… I learned long ago that watching sports gives me a great opportunity to knit. While I enjoy the competition, I especially love the stories behind the athletes. These extraordinary people have learned to focus their minds so that they can apply their skills under amazing pressure. Each story is a window into determination, passion, and community.
And while the stories unfold, I knit their Olympian spirit into my own projects.
We completely missed the 2006 Olympics because we were in India where their lack of winter sports translated into a lack of Olympic coverage… and under the circumstances, that was fine with us! That trip remains one of our most incredible journeys which left us with the most marvelous of memories; in my head I will undoubtedly spend the rest of my Februarys in India….
Nevertheless, we’ve been looking forward to this year’s Olympics. The time differences mean we don’t see much live action, but we’re finding the rhythm of the Highlights shows. And while the skaters skate and the skiers ski, I knit. And I’m not the only one who does this. The queen of knitting bloggers, Stephanie Pearl McPhee (aka the Yarn Harlot) started the Knitting Olympics 4 years ago, inviting knitters to cast on a (challenging) project during the opening ceremonies and complete it by the time the flame is extinguished 17 days later. This, therefore, is my first Knitting Olympics; my entry is called Winterbourne, and at present it looks like this:
So what is it, and why call it Winterbourne? Well, it is born in Winter, of course, at the tender point where one’s dreams of green just begin to be realized. The word winterbourne is a term for a stream or river that is dry though the summer months… and Winter has inspired and motivated this project! It will be more recognizable by the end of the week!
Please stay tuned as I knit my way to Gold!
The 2010 Knitting Olympics
Eligibility: Any knitter who, embracing the “Citius, Alitius Fortius” ideal, would like to challenge themselves while embracing the Olympic spirit, and is just whacked enough to play along with me.
Concept: You must cast on a project during the Opening Ceremonies of the Winter Olympics, Friday, February 12, 2010 and finish before the Olympic flame goes out Sunday, February 28. That’s 17 days.
1. The project must be a challenge for you to complete in 17 days.
2. There are no rules about what a challenge would be. Like the real Olympics, there are many areas to compete in. If you are a new knitter, then a garter stitch baby sweater might do…If you are experienced, use your own conscience.
3. While this is intended to be somewhat difficult (like the Olympics) it is not intended to ruin your life. Don’t set yourself up for failure. (Olympic athletes may cry, but they do not whine pitifully, sob and threaten members of their family with pointed sticks because they haven’t slept in five days. ) This is intended to (like the Olympics) require some measure of sacrifice, and be difficult, but it should be possible to attain.
4. No casting on before the flame is lit. (The opening ceremonies run from 6-8 pst. If you can’t watch, then I’d pick a time in there.)
5. Finish before the flame goes out.
6. You may swatch before the games. (I consider this “training.”)