Attention all braiders. You don’t exist!

Knit if you want. Crochet if you must. But don’t talk to me about braiding. Because I found out recently that there is actually no such thing as a braider!

The shock came when we were watching Countdown on Friday 10 November. For those who have never seen it (ie, about two hundred thousand Americans for a start πŸ™‚ ) contestants have to get the longest word possible from a selection of nine letters. Winners stand to take home the grand prize of…a teapot.

Anyway, one hapless anagrammer suggested the word ‘braider’ and was promptly informed by the venerable Susie Dent of the Oxford English Dictionary (an excuse for a lexicon if ever there was one πŸ™‚ ) that ‘braider’ was not a valid word.

So if you are (or think you are a) a braider, sorry but your time is up. Prepare to live the rest of your days in an existential quandary.

Or alternatively, take up knitting instead. You know you want to.

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If knitting stitches were eggs

‘I’ve lost my count!’ Shana wailed. A fine time to lose count, I thought. She could have done it at some other time than while working on a Β Top Secret new project πŸ™‚

But the wailing continued…

‘I have forty-eight stitches here…’

‘Now just hold it there a moment,’ I said. ‘This isn’t going to turn into one of those math headaches like the one about how long it takes two men to fill a bath and what happens if they rope in two more workers, is it?’

‘No of course not,’ said Shana. But I was not entirely reassured.

‘And you promise it won’t deteriorate into one of those “Let x equal the number of stitches” algebra nightmares?’

‘Certainly not,’ said Shana.

‘Very well then. Go ahead and state your problem,’ I said.

‘Well, I’ve just forgotten how to divide forty-eight by twelve,’ said Shana. An embarrassing difficulty, I thought, especially for Shana, who studied accountancy many years ago when the abacus still ruled the world πŸ™‚

‘Let’s make it easy,’ I said. ‘Try to imagine the twelve is, say, a dozen eggs. Instead of worrying about stitches, look at it as four dozen eggs. See? Your forty-eight eggs divided by twelve is four. Got it?’

‘Thanks a lot,’ said Shana. ‘You’ve been a great help.’ Shana’s subtle intonation suggested, however, that she rather thought otherwise. And that if those stitches had indeed been eggs, I would now have a bonce fairly covered in yolk.

‘You’re most welcome,’ I said, thick-skinnedly. ‘Don’t mention it.’

Now, why do I have a sudden appetite for a supersized egg and bacon omelette?