I don’t know about other knitters, but I really don’t think about row gauge too often. Stitch gauge, absolutely, but row gauge, not so much. This is probably because I knit things based on length, not number of rows. A scarf? I just knit until it’s as long as I want it to be, and then block it even longer. Socks? I knit the leg as long as I think I can get away with, then the foot to as long as my foot is. If I were knitting a sweater, row gauge would be important to make sure that the shaping landed in the right place. Or, if my tension changed from one sleeve to another, the sleeves would end up different lengths.
I must have been a little more relaxed when I knit the first half of the project (about which I cannot yet write), because the second half is coming out significantly shorter. Last night I gave it a few good tugs and pulls, and I think I can block it out to be the same as the first half. I’ll have to knit with more calmness of mind when I go back to to it tonight.
It’s really important to me that this project comes out well, and I think my hurriedness is not helping. The other night, I kept knitting when I meant to purl, and purling when I meant to knit. Yesterday I had to drop a stitch down six or seven rows to change a purl to a knit. How hard is ribbing, that I can’t keep it straight?