Knitter's superstition requires lots of hours during football games

Kellie Houx’s scrap yarn blanket includes lots of knitting time during Chiefs football games.

Let me spin a yarn for this column. It’s going to be true, colorful and fun.

I’m a subdued sports fan. I’m not really a yeller or one to get overly emotional at televised games.

During my youth, I competed in gymnastics and softball. I loved softball, playing catcher or shortstop. I was never one to get too anxious about these, but rather served quietly.

Now, I’m an adult and my interest in sports has leaned more toward high school and college thanks to being a reporter at a community newspaper. Honestly, I don’t think anything is wrong with that. It’s what my life has been, proofing sports pages.

Sure, I enjoy the Royals and I have been to the K to see some games. As a freshman in high school, we got to watch the Kansas City Royals World Series 1985 parade thanks to the school’s audio visual department.

When our little family takes vacations, my husband enjoys going to minor league ballparks. We have no horse in the race so to speak, so it’s just a chance to see another cool stadiums and see how that community honors its sports teams.

As a young person, I grew up with a father who didn’t care much for sports, but a mother who is a die hard Chiefs fan. There’s not much wavering to her love, even though the Chiefs have had some rocky decades.

On Sunday, I received texts from her, stating her anxiety levels. I am sure my father’s usual Sunday nap was not in the cards.

It’s sort of funny that my 19-year-old daughter has taken after my mother. She screams at the television, jumps up and down at touchdowns and tells me how her nerves aren’t going to handle the nail-biting games of the Chiefs.

One thing that is required of me, which I started a few years ago when the Royals showed some strength and marched to the Worlds Series for the win, is to knit.

It’s become not just a superstition in the house, but a requirement. The past few games of the Kansas City Chiefs have been a marathon knitting experience for me. I start knitting from kickoff and don’t stop, even during halftime. It’s about three hours of steady knitting.

Ironically, I am knitting a scrap yarn blanket. OK, before people question me on this, I think it’s apropos that I’m knitting a scrap yarn blanket mixed with a few skeins of new yarn. I liken the many partial skeins and smatterings of strings to the Chiefs.

Think about it this way. We have veteran players like Travis Kelce, who has been with the Chiefs since he was drafted in 2013, to younger players like Byron Pringle, who played for Kansas State.

I look at my yarn and the partly used skeins and then I have some unifying new skeins that represent quarterback Patrick Mahomes. I can’t forget Coach Andy Reid and his leadership; he is that expert knitter taking all these threads together to form an incredible piece of work.

While I didn’t wait my whole life for a Chiefs run at the Super Bowl, I’m a big fan of joy, camaraderie and hometown pride.

And don’t worry, I will be knitting for at least four hours come Feb. 2.

Southeast Editor Kellie Houx can be reached at or 389-6630.

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