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This fall Paul and I have gone on a crime-watching spree. We’ve been turning on the TV, and taking in episode after episode, season after season of detective shows.

We began in pre-World War II England with Foyle’s War, traveled to Sweden for the Wallander series, and are now back in the U.K. following Helen Mirren in Prime Suspect.

Like Madame Dufarge in Charles Dickens’ Tale of Two Cities, I have been sitting in my chair, quietly knitting, whilst bedlam breaks out before my eyes. I’m not as clever as Madame Dufarge, I can’t knit names into my work.

But like her I am keeping a list. Names of people I’ve had the luck and pleasure to connect with during this past year. People who, in this online world, have been both supportive and inspiring.

And so, stitch by stitch, I’ve been knitting my gratitude into a series of hats.

One recipient likened my stitches to a row of brussel sprouts.

Knitting is one of the few places in life where I have even a ghost of a chance at mimicking nature’s perfection.

My original concept for this post was a question: Why can’t writing, or even life be more like knitting? I’ve since realized that I don’t want either of those things to be as straightforward as knitting.

I want both my writing and my life to include the unexpected, the good, and the bad. Those detective shows on TV would be pretty boring without the false leads, wild goose chases, and surprise endings. Writing and life would be pretty boring too if I always arrived on time, and at the expected destination.

In fact, those hats might be getting a bit too straightforward. So for my next project, I’m thinking … SOCKS!

Socks knitted by Ronnie Citron-Fink, photo by Jen Kialba.