Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The learning curve

As a rule, I love nothing better than learning new stuff.

There's something about the thrill of acquiring new skills and knowledge, becoming either proficient or knowledgeable (or better yet, both) in something that interests me. Thus the attraction to knitting and spinning: no matter how much I know at any given point in time, there's always a long, sloping learning curve beckoning me.

It's like climbing a hill, pausing every step or so to admire the amazing scenery, and adding that moment to my growing repository of views and experiences, but also knowing that no matter how much I add, there will always be more.

"Try this!" says my Inner Spinner, holding out a spindle and some combed top. "Or how about this?" as my Inner Knitter guides me toward lace knitting, or making two socks on one circular needle, or knitting up some new fibre I've never tried before. I almost always bite, and even if a particular skill or technique doesn't appeal to me, I have the satisfaction of knowing I've given it a shot.

I think it's a healthy attitude, and I try to apply it in other parts of my life, as well. Fitness, for example. Lately I've gone back to taking three classes per week -- Pilates on Tuesday, the ominous-sounding Boot Camp on Wednesday, and the deceptively meek-sounding Mixed Impact on Friday.

And every time I go to my Pilates class, as I did this morning, I am reminded on a visceral level that my body still has a lot to learn. Apparently, while I've spent the past three years hunched in front of a computer screen most days, my body had some kind of amnesic episode, in which it completely forgot every core fitness skill I'd taught it. Tricks I used to find challenging but d0-able now seem completely beyond my ken; and stuff I used to find dead easy now makes my muscles tremble in terror.

But that just means I have lots ahead of me to relearn, right?

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