Knitting 101 – How (Not) to Knit

Dan Bergstein – known as dantuty on twitter and youtube – is a free-lance writer.  He describes himself succinctly:

Writer. Astronaut. Liar.

Among other pursuits, he works for SparkNotes,  a site originally launched by some Harvard students that offers study guides and discussion forums offered on various academic subjects. The literature section includes brief analyses of characters, themes and plots.

SparkNotes also has a section called SparkLife, a social section focused on non-educational topics for teens and young adults. This section of the site includes blogs, advice columns, contributed posts, and Open Threads. One of the most popular features of SparkLife is Dan Bergstein’s Blogging Twilight, in which he chronicles his reactions to the books, chapter by chapter.  A couple of excerpts from his observations of the first book:

Why is attractiveness part of the vampire mythos? It seems unfair to say the least. There should be some overweight vampires or vampires with knobby knees and bad bangs. If only the gorgeous get bitten, it would be smarter to gain a lot of weight than to hang garlic in your room. Easier too. Perhaps later in the book, someone will explain why only attractive people get bitten by vampires.

A couple hundred pages into the book, there’s no villain to be found. The preface set up a life-and-death situation that Bella will encounter at some point. But since no bad guys have been introduced (except the thugs in Port Angeles), I’m left wondering if the hunter mentioned in the preface isn’t Eric gone berserk, wearing bright orange hunting gear. I hope the baddie shows up soon, because these chapters were a bit boring, repetitive, boring, and repetitive.

He is also working on Blogging Harry Potter, which he likes much more.

Even the first few pages of this book are better written than anything in the Twilight series. It’s so refreshing to read a novel filled with joy and fun. Of course, after finishing Twilight, I find myself marveling at the wit and creativity of a Burger King menu.

(And here’s his breakdown of the four Hogwarts houses:

Gryffindor = Matt Damon
Ravenclaw = Neil Gaiman/Amy Poehler
Hufflepuff = A sleepy Matt Damon after he ate a big sandwich
Slytherin = A cranky Kanye West in need of a nap  )

His own blog, Laser Farm, is what he calls his personal doodle pad.

I really do enjoy his work, but it wasn’t until SparkLife Academy that I laughed harder than I have in a long time.  I’ll let you see why.

When asked what topic I would like to teach at the famed SparkLife Academy, the answer was easy: Knitting. I’ve already taught you how to become hotshot writers, and knitting is my only other area of expertise. In this lesson, I will teach you how to knit. Grab a highlighter, because there will be a test.

Step One: Knit.

Step Two: Keep knitting.

Step Three: Finish knitting and open an Etsy shop to sell your wares.

The above instructions may be difficult to understand without visual aids. For that reason, I present the following tutorial video, the first part in my lecture series: Dan Teaches You Stuff.

(Pop quiz:  What is the most important thing you have learned in this lesson?)


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One Response to “Knitting 101 – How (Not) to Knit”

  1. Roberta Says:

    Hmmm – I don’t know the correct answer, but I think it’s high time we met and bragged again ^_^

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