March is going out like a lion – or maybe a lion cub. It’s cooler outside, because of the wind, but it’s lovely! I wish the weather would stay like this all year – just enough to need a sweater, but not so bad you’re uncomfortable.
John, bless his heart, came home from the supermarket (yes he did) yesterday with a beautiful bunch of tulips, put them in a vase and plopped them down on what I euphemistically refer to as my desk. It’s true name is the disaster area, albeit an organized one, LOL:). Tomorrow is court and I should be getting some visits in, but they will have to wait for later this evening after I finish with a mandatory training I’m attending in Baltimore City. No problem! It’s nice to see the rest of my colleagues and I will be bringing my knitting with me. Why not? So how bad can that be? Thankfully, my boss is great and as long as I listen and learn, I will be accomplishing two worthwhile goals at once. I will probably bring the Mondo Cable Cardi as I am still in the midst of those increases and yes, I have gone all off count on my stitch count for each section, so the next few rows will be getting it back to where it needs to be! Other than that, it’s still going to be some relatively mindless knitting so I can pay attention to what is being said. On the other hand, I could bring the Clothilde with me, since I am on a deadline to finish it by Friday. And now we come to the title of this post. Faith. Knitting is often an exercise in faith. Seriously, just look at this lump of knitting. I am not a brilliant designer, but the designer of this pattern certainly is. The stitches are bunched on the needles and, although I can see most of the patterns – and they are really nice – I have little idea whether this will be large enough for what I want to make. And, as I said, I’m on a deadline. So this knitting is an exercise in faith, or for the more cynical among us, calculated risk. I am investing time (about 20 hours) money (for the yarn, pattern and other equipment) in hope that the finished item will not only be something I will like, but something the recipient will like and use. Granted, there is a limited bit of room to make changes. If it is not large enough, I can add an edging, for example. However, if the recipient doesn’t like it, my work will have only some small symbolic meaning. Luckily the recipient is a kind person and has always been grateful and has actually used whatever I’ve knitted for her in the past. So I am knitting this. On faith.
In the last two days while I was driving around between the office, court and visits, I actually had a few coherent thoughts – who knew? One of those thoughts was why lawyers, writers, artists and others – knitters for example – blog. Let’s face it, most of us don’t have anything really new to say to the world. I suppose a number of us, myself included, like to memorialize aspects of our lives through a lens we feel is unique. Perhaps it is a way to deal with the perceived anonymity we think this ever-shrinking yet ever more populated world in which we find ourselves.
For me it is something a little different. Bear with me for a minute.
A long time ago, back in the middle ages, when I was 17 years old, I took a battery of tests at a suite of offices ensconced in a brownstone in a nice part of Manhattan (New York City). The name of the company was – and still is – the Johnson O’Connor Research Foundation.
Johnson O’Connor has been around since the 1920s I think. My father was actually tested in 1947 or so when he was 13 years old. A few of my sibs were tested along with me. They do aptitude testing. Their theory is that people are born with certain genetically ingrained abilities. And they have the ability to cultivate other abilities that are not necessarily inherited, but a combination of the inherited traits.
For example, there’s an aptitude I can tell you seriously do NOT have and that is structural visualization. My limited understanding of this aptitude is that it is necessary if one wishes to be a mechanic or a surgeon or an architect or engineer. It is the ability to visual the physical aspects of a thing – a spatial ability. I am one of those people who have a hard time putting those “slidey” puzzles together. Forget the Rubik’s cube. It will never happen for me. I do have the opposite aptitude though and that is abstract visualization – in effect seeing how people and things interrelate (it’s been a long while, so I am oversimplifying things).
The most important aptitude actually relates to personality. There are two major divisions: Objective (most people) and Subjective (less people). Objective personalities are those for whom the term “synergy” really works. They gain more, do more and are more effective when working in groups with other people – the member of the band vs. the band leader or the soloist. A salesperson is another example. This should not be mistaken for outgoing vs. introverted. You can be an introvert and still have an objective personality; similarly you can be outgoing and have a subjective personality. A subjective personality I think is the person who can spend hours at a time working, thinking – or in the case of a musician or artistic – practicing one’s art. Most attorneys are subjective personalities – a lot of their work is spent alone either with a client or witness gathering information or doing research, writing and strategizing. The unusual thing about these “subjective” occupations is that we all have to “come up for air.” And when one is of a more “objective” bent or one of those lucky ones on the cusp of subjective/objective, we have to mix it up from time to time with the rest of the world. And that, dear 3.5 readers is a good thing in my view.
Perhaps for me, all this blogging about daily activities and thinking is another way of recharging, of reconnecting, and most importantly, of taking stock of where I am today. Blogging invites comment. It makes you more vulnerable, but the enrichment it has given me has been worth every bit of any negative possibility out there. Just my happy thought for the day.This new Amazon gadget thingie has found me a few links to books by JOCRF: ,Learning to Use Your AptitudesWordbook: The Johnson O’Connor Research Foundation vocabulary building program : teacher’s manual The relationship of word frequency, part of speech, length, and derivation to difficulty level (Technical report / Johnson O’Connor Research Foundation, Human Engineering Laboratory)The ideaphoria worksamples as measures of divergent thinking (Technical report / Johnson O’Connor Research Foundation, Human Engineering Laboratory)
Before I head off to that training, I thought I’d do a couple of quick book reviews for you. This Christmas my dear husband who spoils me sometimes gave me a Kindle – that e-book reader that Amazon puts out. It has been really nice having this. I purchased a number of books for the kindle – one of which was a knitting book on intarsia. I’m hoping for three things: 1. color pictures on the kindle 2. backlighting on the kindle and 3.more knitting books on kindle.
Anyway, my birthday was last month and my dear children gave me Amazon gift cards which I used to get a few books for Kindle. Kindle also has a relationship with Audible.com . I bought an audible book titled TheChecklist Manifesto. It’s about the use of checklists and how they have revolutionized medical practice. I cannot help to think it would revolutionize my law practice as well.
The other book I purchased was not on Kindle; it was Knitting Around by Elizabeth Zimmerman (originally wanted to be titled Knitting Without a License, LOL) It’s a terrific book about Ms. Zimmerman and her family and their journey from immigrant to life in the USA in addition to, oh yeah, being a book about knitting. Ms. Zimmerman’s indefatigable personality shines through in this book and of course the patterns are classics to help you start to knit independently.
Well, I’d better run.
God be with you ’til we meet again!