Tuesday, January 29, 2008


I survived last night. Not only did I survive, but I think that it even went well! It was the first meeting of my field methods class, which I've been fretting about. The fretting has been due to several factors: first, I've never actually taken a good field methods class, and therefore have nothing to model; second, because of this lack of modelling, I have long had the fear that even though I do field research, I've been doing it wrong all this time, and now people are going to see just how wrong I do it (ah, yes, that beloved impostor syndrome); third, a friend of mine has agreed to be the language consultant for this class, which means that I've been worried that she would hate the experience and nevertheless be stuck doing it for 13 more weeks, not to mention that not only will my students have the opportunity to see me do everything wrong, but so will a friend of mine (the potential embarrassment factor increases exponentially). There are more frets, but those have been the biggies. Well, last night went swimmingly. I won't go into the details, but she had fun, the students had fun, and I was relieved. Whew!

Meanwhile, and thanks to Anne's gentle reminders of my good intentions, I started a pair of Paris-Roubaix mitts for Rick (yes, yes, they have been on my list of Things To Knit -- I just got distracted, in that way that I have, by shinier objects). I knitted away on them Sunday evening, and got through most of the first one, to above the thumb. Last night, I was distracted by another small project I needed to work on (more about that tomorrow), but today I'm back on track. Here they are so far:
And here.
(Yes, those photos were taken with PhotoBooth, why do you ask?) This pattern is a complete kick in the pants, because it is so simple, and the results are so nubbly and complex-looking. I'm using Plymouth Yarns Baby Alpaca DK, which is soft soft soft. I may have to knit another pair for myself with this yarn someday. Meanwhile, Rick is excited about them, I think in large part because they're named for a bike race that he loves, and because he got to share with me all kinds of interesting (you may imagine little quotes around that word, if you like) details about just how many miles of pavee are involved in that race. We're considering going up to the mountains to play in the snow this weekend, so if I can finish them, they will be put to good use.

Today is a perfect day to work on them, as I have a meeting, then my knitting group is having our lunch meeting, then another meeting, then Kivrin's dance class, all of which are excellent knitting opportunities. And I can bask in the knowledge that there is almost a whole week between me and my next opportunity to publicly make an ass of myself in my field methods class. Yes, life is good.


Scienceprincess said...

Congratulations on the class going well :-)

I completely understand the looking like a fool factor when planning a class . . . I am teaching AP Biology this year and I never took it myself in high school and I will be judged on how well my students do on the test.


Anyway, good luck and enjoy the alpaca :-) Alpaca makes everything better.


Willow said...

We all have those days where we think we're the world's worst teachers (had one of those myself today) so it is really very nice to have a class go well and you can say, "Oh, I guess I really can teach."

Do you do any mono-lingual demonstrations? I've seen a couple of them and they are so interesting. However, if I ever did one I'm sure all the answers to my questions would be, "Why is the lady pointing?" and "The lady is acting strange!"

Lovely mitts! Such wonderful ways to relax we have.

Marianne said...

Rick is a lucky man, those are going to be such wonderfully soft and warm mitts!
Heh... oh ye of such little faith in yourself :^) I'm glad it went well last night!

Anne said...

Yay! Isn't that pattern wonderful??

I know just what you mean about being observed (by someone other than students) while teaching--this is my evaluation year, and I have had several colleagues in and out of my classes in recent weeks. In the ed, it always turns out to be good and useful, and I love talking about teaching with my colleagues ... but it's nerve-wracking.

twinsetellen said...

Maybe field methods are like knitting - as long as you accomplish what you want, there isn't a right or a wrong way? (Can you be a combination field methoder? Or must you follow continental or English methods to do it right?)

Bea said...

So glad that you class went well! I can't relate but I can be happy for you.

I have to say I love the mitts! SO pretty and soft looking.

Anonymous said...

Good Job!

I'm an imposter everywhere I am. Basically, I'm an imposter adult (and don't get me started on faking the parenting skills - I think the kid has already noticed).

Lovely warm mitts. I hear it snowed in Calistoga. But I don't think it will hold until the weekend.


Willow said...

Since I teach kindergarteners, I doubt any of them was thinking about my teaching ability or style. They just were bored with the math lesson (so was I!).

hopalong682003 said...

Yeah, I'm glad that it went so well! And, I love the mitts. Very cool.

BTW, now that I'm in bloggerland, do you know how I can e-mail you directly when you comment? Your comments show up in my Yahoo! mail, which is good. But then I get a failed delivery notification, which is not so good. ;-)


EGunn said...

Oooh...first day of teaching a new class and being observed? That sounds like a pretty good recipe for fretting. Good thing it never really turns out as badly as you think it will. Congratulations on having it over and successful!

Alwen said...

Oooh, pretty mitts! I like the pattern and the color, and they're alpaca, too? Wow.

Courtney said...

Congrats on the successful field methods class!

Those fingerless gloves you're working on are so great. My boyfriend is a cyclist, and now you've got me convinced that he wants a pair. :) We'll see!

anne said...

oooh, those mitts are trés excellent! magnifique!

anne said...

ps: i'm really glad your class went well; i knew you would do great!

Katie said...

Those are some fine looking mittens. I'm glad the class went well!

Stell said...

well done, on both the well organised, well subscribed, well staffed class and the mitts. but a bit of pain the class is an evening one -- Stella

Carrie K said...

A whole week! Awesome. ;)

My personal theory is that if you hadn't worried about it, it would happen. It's always what we don't expect that blindside us. Glad to find out that it went swimmingly!

Those mitts are really nice. I love that patterning.

Rabbitch said...

Did you teach the class in Klingon? I ask merely for information.

(ps congrats)

KnitNana said...

Great mitts.
Oh and yes. Fear of falling flat on my face and being labelled "IMPOSTER!"
Why do we do this to ourselves?