Mea culpa! I'm pretty sure it's my faulty copying, and thanks to Fiona for her query which brought this to my attention.
In the tenth line I printed - 'treat its fibres with respect' - 'reign it in, but not too much'. As Fiona pointed out, and Claire has confirmed, the word should be "rein". Sorry everyone, but I'm glad we sorted this out before we all tried to fit 'reign' into the story. I'll now change this here on this blog and on my own.