Support Gansey Nation -

Buy Gordon a cuppa!

Many, many thanks to those of you who have already contributed!

Mrs Laidlaw 5: 23 – 30 September


How many trees make a forest?

You know the old adage, It never rains but it pours? Well, leaving aside the fact that it’s missing the crucial words “when Gordon is walking to and from work”, I have conclusive proof of its veracity today.

You see, as if all our network problems weren’t enough, my phone has now decided to do the cell phone equivalent of deciding to forsake the world, and join a religious community, spending the rest of its days in fasting and meditation—all because of a faulty software upgrade. Anyway, because of all this, it’s just a short blog today.

The conversation between my computer and me went roughly as follows:

Computer: ‘Oh dear. There seems to be a system error. You’d better try again.’
Me: ‘OK. How’s that?’
‘H’m. Looks like you’d better perform a restore operation. Of course, you’ll lose all your data if you do.’
‘Do I have a choice?’
‘It depends. You could smash your phone with a hammer, for instance. Would you like to try that?’
‘All right, all right, you win. At least you can restore it from a backup, can’t you?’
‘Sure, no problem.’
(20 minutes later) Computer: ‘Phone restored. Hey, this seems to be a new phone. Would you like to register it?’
Me: ‘It’s not a new phone! I thought you were going to restore it from a backup?’
‘What backup?’
‘From one of the hundreds on your hard drive!’
‘I don’t have any backups.’
‘Yes you do!’
‘I so do not. You fibber.’
‘But I backed it up every day.’
‘Prove it. Bet you can’t.’
‘What—you really don’t have any backups at all?’Gusset
‘Would I lie to you?’
‘Oh. Well, I guess I could manually add all the songs and apps and photos and—’
‘Yeah, yeah. Spare me the whining self-pity. Do you want to get started? Or would you rather get the hammer?’
‘No, you win. I’ll start now.’
‘Heh, heh. Sucker.’
‘Oh, nothing. Just performing a diagnostic subroutine, or something…’

Mind you, all conversations with my computer end up like that, so I guess I shouldn’t be surprised.

Margaret’s away (yet) again, so it’s just me and my stripped-down camera phone once more, I’m afraid. I’m still keeping up my pretty good rate of progress up the body, averaging roughly a tree a week. I’ve just started the gussets, though, which will slow me down a little from now on.

As we’ve said before, apologies for the continued difficulties in accessing the site. When Margaret comes back we’ll start looking into finding a service provider that can actually, well, provide a service. If anyone can recommend such a thing, please let me know.


Wick Harbour Lighthouse

Also—I’m trying to find some grey gansey yarn. Does anyone know a supplier?

Now I’m off to find a hammer and see if I can persuade my computer to see reason…

14 comments to Mrs Laidlaw 5: 23 – 30 September

  • Nigel

    Oh boy. I have only just reached the gussets!

    • Gordon

      Hi Nigel, well, you must remember that (a) this pullover is both shorter and narrower than most of the pullovers I knit, and (b) you probably have a life, which i seem to have mislaid in a railway carriage somewhere between Taunton and Truro back in 2009…

      Chin up!


  • Nigel

    Behave. You are prolific! My gansling is turning into a gangster as it gets bigger. It won’t behave.
    And, to answer your question from a few weeks ago: some days are better than others; some days my fingers won’t work

    • Gordon

      Yes, they start out like little babies, quite cute. But before you know it, they’re sprouting hair in unlikely places, can’t control their limbs, and the next thing you know the police are ringing your doorbell because there’s been a complaint.

      I know what you mean, my fingers have no memory – some days, like the song says, it’s just like starting over. Or was it blowin’ in the wind? Possibly the laughing genome. One of them, anyway…


  • Marilyn

    Hello, hello! Success at last. Wow, I would not have missed Margaret’s stole for the world. Absolutely stunning. If there was someone in the family who knit colorwork, you’d have the spectrum covered.
    I’m enjoying the pre-blocked state of your latest gansey, Gordon- it looks rather ruffly. I know it will smooth out and be very linear. There’s enjoyment to be found all along the way.
    Sorry about your server/hosting issues, that’s a big job to switch. I’m just so happy to have finally gotten across the pond to Caithness! All the best to The Archivist and the lovely “Administrator”.

    • Gordon

      Hi Marilyn,

      I find the texture of pre-blocked ganseys interesting, too. Of course, once they’re flat and even you can see all the wonderful detail, but when they concertina around the purl stitches they have a sort of adolescent rough diamond feel to them which is rather appealing. (Of course, they’re also a bit unforgivably figure-hugging too – not a good thing for those of us for whom “sag” isn’t just an Indian dish with spinach…!)


  • Judit /Finland

    Morning !
    Good news: page opened within 10 sec.
    Happy days are here again :).


    • Gordon

      Hi Judit,

      Hurrah! It feels like after the cataclysm those of us who survived, scattered and shell-shocked, are one by one reestablishing contact with base camp… (As they say in Where Eagles Dare – the film, incidentally, in which Clint Eastwood kills more movie extras than any other he appears in – “Broadsword calling Danny Boy, Broadsword calling Danny Boy, do you read me, over?” Though what would our call signs be? “Fiveply calling Gusset”? “Heapy calling Chevron”? Somehow “Mrs Laidlaw calling Henry Freeman” doesn’t have the right air, somehow…)


  • Cathy

    Ha! If it’s after midnight I can access ganseys.com!
    Congratulations on Mrs Laidlaw – she looks stunning! And Filey, which I’ve just admired.

    • Gordon

      Hi Cathy,

      Hopefully you can access us any hour of the day now – ha, my new slogan, “ganseys.com: serving the vampire community’s bespoke knitting needs since 2007”! I’ve got a list of the gansey patterns I want to knit before I call it a day, and this is one I’ve always liked. If there was a gansey-wearing superhero (“Gusset Man to the rescue!”) I think he’d wear this one…


  • Cathy

    20.10BST and it’s opened straightaway…
    Now I’ll have to get back to my “project” again. Watching your progress is an incentive to keep going myself: am ashamed to say my gansling has been stuck at a kind of midriff warmer sporting a short flap for nearly six weeks. All right, was in foreign parts for 10 days but no excuse really.
    Re vampires – visitors of the dark here come in the form of slugs in the kitchen. Does anyone else have this problem?

    • Hi Cathy,

      Vampire slugs? Probably the messiest of all the undead, and while they’re easy to evade they do create the problem of spawning a legion of vampire lettuces – so you have to be careful when munching your way through your salad, as waiters and other diners look askance if you fall to the floor screaming with a vampire lettuce leaf clamped on your jugular.

      We used to have (regular) slugs when we lived in Wales, and came down to slug trails across the kitchen floor, or even (yuk!) on the kitchen counter. Again, another reason to wear slippers first thing in the morning, as I can tell you from experience, flossing bits of slug out from between your toes leaves mental scars that are slow to heal…


  • Nigel

    I have a snail ensconced quite happily on my hall roof. The girls have named it Boris. I think he/she is there for the winter. They check him every day.

    • Well, of course Nigel you are very lucky, for Boris is something of a legend among terrestrial pulmonate gastropod molluscs. He’s the snail equivalent of Van Helsing the celebrated vampire hunter, tracking down undead slugs and despatching them (if you look closely in your garden of a morning, you will find a number of dead slugs, each impaled with a sliver of matchstick through their hearts…)

Leave a Reply to Nigel Cancel reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.