My second pair of socks is completed. I had very little yarn left (last time around, I started a second skein for the second sock, but rumor had it that potentially one skein could afford two socks). Towards the end, each row heightened my anxiety; what if it ran out before I was done? I did have another skein on hand, but didn't want to mess with matching up the stripes, especially since I was planning on giving the spare skein to a coworker interested in the colors.
I deviated from the pattern when it was time to bind off. The original method called for a zigzag bindoff; when attempted on my first pair of socks, I had a slightly raised row. Naturally, this obvious discrepancy was unfortunate, as it showed on the top of the toe. My boss made the same pair of socks; one sock had this same problem, the other didn't. I'm not sure how we stumbled into this, but I wasn't fond of the result.
An alternate bind off method suggested was the kitchener stitch (also known as grafting). You still line the stitches up on two needles, but instead of knitting, you use a tapestry needle to finish. I found a site that clearly showed the process. When all was said and done, without me pointing out the location, no one would be able to find out where I finished.
Tomorrow, I break in the new socks. I love them and their predictable stripes. It's the one consolation that the weather is turning cool again.