Friday, January 15, 2016

Knitters (like my wife) practice a skill that is basically controlled tangling of yarn. The opposite, it seems, is just as fascinating.

The most acclaimed project in the group’s tangled history is known to knitters as “the Stash Disaster of Epic Proportion.” In 2011, a Sacramento, Calif., knitter was cataloging her entire stash of yarn in her backyard—only to leave it out during a rainstorm. She tossed the 30 to 50 balls of soaking-wet yarn into the dryer, producing further chaos.

More than a dozen volunteers stepped up, “drooling over the delicious detangling it promises,” as one member put it. The project, about the size of a lamb, was carried in a bedsheet to places such as a library and a park, where detanglers picked at it together. It also made its way to the homes of several detanglers.
“Best of luck to the next detangler,” one of the volunteers wrote. “This one, I regret to say, defeated me.”
The final unraveler, Melissa Kwan, 30, of Irvine, Calif., says the mess “kind of just lived on the floor of our apartment” for months. She posted photos of the slowly shrinking mass, with balls of green and red and pink emerging until only a ball of sock yarn and the fuzz of unusable mohair were left. On March 24, 2013, she posted a final photo and the message: “Disaster Handled.”

If these knitters think that's hard, try a snarl of 6 lb test fishing like while standing on a slippery wet rock in the middle of a cold water river.


  1. As to the 6 lb test, mine was 4 lb and it just happened about a month ago.........

  2. I would tend to follow the example of Alexander-the-Great, who untied the Gordion Knot in 3 seconds.

  3. The dissection of a backlash is an art. One that I only learned because I was too poor to afford to cut off the birds nest and buy new line. I made several friends showing them that trick.

    1. Plus, you might be three miles down the river with no trail, with fish biting, and there is no replacing the line. Deep breathing and patience is the key. Don't get mad!