Yeah, I've never met a pattern I couldn't (and didn't) alter somehow. In fact, I've altered every knitting pattern I've ever tried (sorry original designers). And I've launched out on many an uncharted expedition with just needles (or crochet hook), yarn, and an idea in my head.
Contrast that with the girl who taught me to knit. I casually mentioned to her that I had altered a pattern, and I thought she was going to faint! She said, "I NEVER deviate from the pattern." I'm not sure if she was simply appalled, thinking I'd committed the unpardonable sin or if the thought of changing a pattern had just never entered her mind. Anywho, I reminded her that there are no knitting police, . . . but I'm not sure the idea stuck (she still looked shell-shocked).