Thoughts for Myself

Absolute versus relative return

In the past couple of weeks, I have sat in front of the television almost every night to watch and cheer for my national team competing in the World Baseball Classic. The team seemed disorganized and disarrayed before the tournament began, but they have reached the championship round without dropping a game… YEA!


But keeping track of player statistics, especially batting average, was not the only thing I was doing during my time in front of the TV. I was also trying to raise my “batting average” with my tatting – namely, my success tatting Celtic shamrocks for today. Here are the results:




My “batting average?” I would have to say 0 – 3, .000.


First, I tatted the one on the left… it looks fine in its complete form, but it took me forever to figure out the Celtic knot. Next, I tatted the one in the middle… I now understood how to work the Celtic knot, but I was so concerned about getting it right, I forgot to add beads! Last, I tatted the one of the right… I got the Celtic knot right and did not forget adding a bead, but I did not plan it well enough to avoid a cut-and-tie. In all three “at bats,” I swung and missed and got struck out! *BIG SIGH*


Maybe I should have chosen a “walk” and passed on tatting Celtic knots to keep my success rate high?

Maybe I should have been a “designated hitter” and tatted only patterns I know I am good at tatting to increase my chances of succeeding?

Or maybe I should have test tatted a few Celtic knots so I could become better at “reading the pitches” and know what to expect to successfully make them into “hits”?


Yeah, maybe I should have.

But maybe I would never have found out where I could improve if I did not stand in the “batter’s box” and take a shot at succeeding.

Maybe I did not get a “hit,” but I was not without gains.

Maybe my “batting average” is .000, but maybe not everything shows in the stats.

Maybe there are aspects of the “game” you can only know by being on the “field.”


Then, maybe I should not have.

Maybe instead of seeking to raise my “batting average” to try to increase relative return, I shall aim to be the tatter with most “at bats” to try to increase absolute return.


To me, a batting average of 20 – 100, .200, is a far more gratifying statistics than 3 – 10, .300 in one “tournament.” Maybe it seems like I am having greater success in the latter, but having twenty pretty tattings makes me feel like a much more successful tatter than only having three, even if I fail eighty times rather than just seven!


I will not deny that relative return is an important figure to keep an eye on. You know me, I am very cautious and lay extensive plans to make sure my success rate is the highest it can be. But I will favour absolute return any time when it comes to tatting… and in all other “games” I wish to do equally well in.


Happy St. Patrick’s Day to everyone who is celebrating, and congratulations to my national team and other semi-finalists for making it to the championship round of WBC. I wish you all good luck!


5 thoughts on “Absolute versus relative return

  1. Pattern: [from left to right] “Celtic Shamrock” by R.P.; “Celtic knot shamrock” by M.R.; “Celtic 4 leaf Clover” by R.P. (stem added by me)
    Thread: [from left to right] Daruma Home Thread by Yokota (cotton hand sewing thread, size #30, colour #26 – dark green); Tatting Lace Yarn “Colourful” by Olympus (cotton lace thread, size “Thin,” colour #T504 – variegated lemon yellow, very light sky blue, and teal); Sulky Cotton by Gütermann (cotton embroidery thread, size #30, colour #4103 – variegated white, pink, purple, green, and yellow), doubled for tatting
    Beads: [from left to right] green bead from Miyuki Round Rocailles mixed beads #3065, size 11/0; none; yellow bead from Miyuki Round Rocailles mixed beads #3064, size 11/0
    Size: [from left to right, in width] about 2.5 centimetres or roughly 1 inch; about 3 centimetres or slightly less than 1 1/4 inches; about 3 centimetres or slightly less than 1 1/4 inches


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