Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Government Regulations, Intrusive Baby Steps

I knit. . .it gives me pleasure to make things for family and friends. Every inch of the yarn passes over my fingers, loops around the needles, takes shape, becomes functional.

Often, I would fashion felted articles. (Felting used to be called boiled wool.) Garments are dense, warm, desirable.

So. . .what's that got to do with government regulations? In the past, when the garment, usually a hat or purse, was completed, it was time to "felt" it. All I had to do was set the washing machine on a hot cycle, toss in the garment and monitor the progress of it shrinking down from a oversized, loosely knit project to a tight, firm felted shape. Simple enough, until I had to replace my washing machine. The first time I used that new machine, the hat I tossed in simply would not felt. It came out soggy and just as big and loosely knit as it went in. I repeated the wash cycle with the same disappointing results. The water was barely tepid.

I called the repairman and explained that the hot water function of the machine wasn't working. It cost me a $70 house call to learn that the temperatures of washing machines was now regulated by the federal government to save energy.

Oh, puh-leeze! (And how pasty the repairman looked in the light cast by a CFL light bulb. But I digress.)

I doubt my hobby of felting wool would harm the planet.
On the other hand, the mercury in CFL bulbs might.

Agenda 21, creeping insidiously.

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