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Showing posts from March, 2013

Knitting Blog: Proving a Rule

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Matching a yarn with a knitting pattern can be harder than it would seem. The first major consideration is gauge. You can’t use a fine yarn to make a heavy cabled sweater, nor can you use a bulky yarn to make a delicate lace shawl. Gauge distinctions can be subtle; a yarn that looks like it would be appropriate for a given pattern may not “make gauge” no matter what size or type of needles you try. The power of multiplication means that being off by just a wee bit from the pattern gauge can have an enormous effect on the size of a knitted item, as a small discrepancy multiplies over the inches of the item’s width.

The next consideration is color. There is a rule of thumb: complex patterns require a simple coloration, complex colorations require a simple pattern. In my experience, this rule of thumb is almost as immutable as the laws of physics.

Sometimes you fall in love with a yarn, and you buy that yarn, and then you realize that both major knitting considerations are making it rea…

A Middle Path on Climate Change: "Deep Future" by Curt Stager

There seem to be two points of view on the increasing levels of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere, and the global warming that we are starting to notice. One is that there is no problem, it’s all just the weather which is unpredictable and changeable. The other is that rising carbon levels are an unmitigated evil, dooming the planet to catastrophic change.

Could there be a third way to look at this issue? A middle way? I’m not talking about a political compromise, but a rational, fact-based analysis that points the way towards acceptance of what has happened, relieves eco-guilt, and offers policy guidelines for going forward.

Curt Stager’s book Deep Future: The Next 100,000 Years of Life on Earth lays out a just such a rational middle path by taking a long view. Carbon pollution has happened, and will affect global climate and ecology for thousands of years. There is more than one scenario of what these effects will be, depending on whether we can taper off from our carbon-based energy…