Easy As Pie

The English language is a very strange thing to be sure, far harder to learn than almost any other for those born in different countries. Let’s face it – Half of the native born speakers can’t even use it correctly! Even putting regular grammar and spelling aside, I can only imagine how confusing it must be for foreigners to decipher the meaning of all our odd and seemingly random phrases. How many times have you thrown one of those old sayings into everyday conversation without truly contemplating their meaning? I myself am guilty of multiple counts of this particular offense, and it only just struck me as how not only out dated most of them are, but how ridiculous they must have been at any point in time. “Cat’s got your tongue?” I would first question why it would even care about your tongue in the least, but then I might also wonder how a cat would ever be in the position to take one’s tongue. …On second thought, maybe I don’t want to know.

I started thinking about this modern language crime after completing a very laborious and arduous project that just happened to be a knit piece of blueberry pie. Why was it decided that something could be “easy as pie,” when in fact real pie can also be a pain to make skillfully? Just knitting a single slice nearly pushed me over the edge into a raving madwoman, ready to smash windows at even the thought of another dropped stitch. Not to sound arrogant, but it had been a long time since tangling with a pattern that troubled me, and thinking that it would be “easy as pie,” I was not prepared for the difficulty that would ensue.

My yarn was flowing smoothly from the skein all through the filling and bottom crust, so I was thinking I would be able to finish up in no time. That was before I had moved on to attempt the lattice top… Maybe it wasn’t the chart that was so confusing, but the way that stitches were required to be slipped and then knit in a certain order… My stitches were so badly twisted by the end of a single row, I was surprised it didn’t form a small yarn-tornado right in my hands!

Somehow I was able to pull myself together enough to complete this challenge, but please, don’t ask me to make a second one. Even after the knitting itself was done with every loose end tied off, I still wasn’t “happy as a clam.” The pieces fit together so awkwardly, it no longer appeared to be anything remotely related to pie once assembled. Too lazy to redo anything entirely, I ended up folding over much of the filling to make it a more realist height and also to fit it comfortably from one side of the crust to the other.

Finally, after much manipulation, I’m proud to report that the over all look of my slice “floats my boat.” Maybe you could even go so far as to say that it “tickles my pickle,” but that might be pushing it a little.

Easy as pie? Certainly not. I was happy for a challenge though, so I think that the results justified the means, making the struggle absolutely worth it. Nonetheless, we should all stop “beating around the bush” with so many corny, obsolete sayings. Pie deserves much more respect than it is typically given due to that common misnomer.

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4 thoughts on “Easy As Pie

  1. Cute read, and great pie, but as a linguist I cannot let false accusations of the difficulty of English stand. English is no more difficult to learn than any other language; each language presents its own unique challenges, it’s true, but deep down they are all just languages. Very often what we consider to be the difficulties of learning a language are actually arbitrary conventions that we have created for ourselves (such as the writing/spelling system of English) that even native speakers have trouble learning because they are so counterintuitive. There are also misconceptions in the other direction, that a given language, for example Spanish, is particularly easy to learn. However, this article introduces the idea both that Spanish is indeed just as difficult and complex as any other language, while also introducing some “corny” idioms from Spanish that make just as little sense as do their English counterparts. The author writes, ‘…the Spanish equivalent of “You’re pulling my leg” is “You’re taking my hair”—one of my teachers told me of some demonstrators who, as a symbol of not wanting to be lied to by the government anymore, appeared in front of a government building with shaved heads—or that Ecuadorans who want to leave well enough alone say that they don’t want to look for the fifth paw of the cat.’

    Putting that aside, however, your pie looks so good I almost want to take a bite of it!

  2. i had problems with the piece of cherry pie myself, not with the pattern, but with the sizing of the pieces. i ended up throwing it in the “finished knits i’ll never do anything with” pile. your blueberry pie looks great, though!

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