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I arrived at work 2 hours early one day last week, and I had decided to knit while I waited to clock in. I had just set up a little knitting zone for myself (complete with snacks), when a coworker of mine popped his head in to say hello. We’ll call him Bob.

Now, I like Bob. Bob is a nice guy. But Bob likes to talk. A LOT. Bob is never quiet. And, while he is very friendly, Bob never really has anything poignant to say. He just chatters.

I had to follow two different cable charts to knit the afghan I had brought, and seeing Bob made me nervous that these precious two knitting hours were about to be commandeered by empty speech. I bristled at the thought of putting down my knitting, so instead I decided to continue following the charts and just give a polite nod, or one word response occasionally in Bob’s direction.

First Bob tells me he is very tired because he got up really early today and he was actually planning on sleeping on the bench across from me until his shift started. I thought this was an excellent idea and immediately agreed that he looked tired and should take a nap.

Bob shakes his head. He tells me this is not possible because he can only sleep after everyone around him is asleep. He can’t sleep around other people. I am getting a headache but I am not ready to give into Bob yet. I keep knitting.

Bob and I sat like this for a while, Bob stretched out on the bench chattering away and me knitting and politely nodding.

Bob tells me about his girlfriend, who is a yoga instructor.  (That’s exactly how he says it. My girlfriend, the yoga instructor. I find this amusing because I cannot imagine Richard ever referring to me in conversation as “my girlfriend, the knitter”. It would be really cool if he did though…)

Bob tells me a gruesome story about his police buddy that beat up a suspect because he attacked another cop. (I am sure I had a disturbed look on my face during this story, but he just kept going anyway.)

Bob tells me about the hog hunting trip he is taking in February. (Clearly, Bob and I have loads in common.)

And then, suddenly, he was quiet.

About a minute later, he started snoring, ever so softly.

I am gleeful. We sat there; me  knitting and reading my charts while Bob softly snored. It was wonderful!

Other people began arriving at work and passing by and I would signal to them to be quiet so Bob could sleep. I was giddy over the work I was completing on my afghan and as I basked in my relaxed progress, it hit me:

My knitting doesn’t just relax ME; my knitting relaxes OTHER PEOPLE too! Watching me leisurely click away on my project had relaxed Bob into a gentle slumber. Bob, who cannot sleep in front of people. Bob, who never stops talking. His snoring made my mini-epiphany all the more significant.

I won. And it’s because I was knitting. 🙂