Posted on November 21, 2004 at 9:54 am

Treadle_practiceI know what this looks like: it looks like I have resolved to finally raise a child who loves fiber as much as I do, the kind of child who will fondle fiber and surf the net looking for cheap Noro while I sit on the couch knitting him a sweater he drew the design for, the kind of child who would never ever wear a knit hat from the Gap.  It looks like I let the boy sit at my wheel last night because it would be the first step in getting him to spin, doesn’t it?  But actually, it’s more insidious even than that. 
The Boy has a tricycle.  And it was an expensive tricycle.  The German kind with a mommy handle and many primary coloured parts.  It should be irresistible.  It should be the gateway to a childhood of heart-stopping risk factors like BMX ramps, skateboards, and getting on the school bus.  It is, however, quickly becoming too small as The Boy seems to grow whole inches overnight, so there is a kind of looming deadline when it comes to the useful life of this exquisite tricycle.  So we are outside twice a day trying to get The Boy to care about this tricycle.  He likes it, it’s true.  But his affection is a kind of detatched and clinical one.  He will point to it proudly and declare ownership "That’s my tricycle," he says.  And he will happily climb on board to be pushed around.  But he displays no interest in the peddling part of the "go" equation.  He has, I venture, failed to make the connection in his head between work and gratification.
So last night, while Miss C played Snood, and my husband graphed power output returns for the amplifier of the moment, The Boy was dancing around the office as I plied the last of the blue roving.  He loves the wheel, and all the moving parts, and it occured to me that the treadle was enough like peddles on a bike that he could make the connection, and voila!  He pushed with his feet for awhile, and this morning after breakfast, we went outside to see if my theory worked. 
Oh well.  It would have been cool if it had worked.  I’ll keep after it, but I shouldn’t realistically expect a child of mine to be any more physically inclined than I ever was.  The only kind of sports I was ever  any good at were the ones that required more brute force than coordination,  like crew or caber tossing.  So it goes.

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Meanwhile, the silk garden sweater proceeds.  At this point, I am entertaining my usual suspicions that it will not be large enough, or that it will be just plain hideous.  But I am continuing to knit as an act of faith, at this point.  I am dangling over Kierkegaard’s void, trusting that I will land safely, self-esteem intact.  I console myself that there may be room along the sides for one of those handy size-expanding inserts called a gussett, or perhaps the sweater could serve as incentive to take off a few pounds.  But come to think of it, sweater as diet incentive has never worked for me before.  Yeah, I may stick with the gussett plan.