Day Six (Saturday 17th May): Views Of Others, Views Of Yourself.
Write about another knitter or crocheter that you admire. This could be someone you know or used to know – an aunt that taught you to crochet or the school-teacher that used to run the after-school learn-to-knit club, or someone who you are aware of because of blogging or other areas of social media. Write about your feelings either for their work or what they bring to you as a knitter or crocheter. Reminiscences of the sound of your mother’s metal needles, or the description your grandad gave of what he’d knit as he sat on his bunk below deck in his sailor’s days are as precious as sharing the enjoyment of the work of a new indie designer or dyer. Spread your enjoyment to your readers.
Next, think about if anyone has ever told you how they feel about your knitting, positive or negative. Have you delighted strangers who have enjoyed telling you how they would sit with their grandmother who loved to crochet doilies, or have you had to withstand a little brother telling you repeatedly that knitting is for grandmas?
This prompt seems to be much like the Day 3 prompt from 2012: “Your Knitting or Crochet Hero.” I found that prompt challenging back then, and I haven’t got a better answer now. But I do have a story about having someone tell me what they felt about my knitting!
About ten years ago, on a nice summer afternoon, I was alone at a bus stop, and I’d gotten there early enough to get some knitting in. After a while, I was joined by a man in a wheelchair. I was mostly paying attention to the knitting, looking up every now and then to see if the bus was coming and not really aware of him at first. So I nearly dropped my knitting when he burst into a full-blown rant: You’re knitting! I thought you women’s libbers were all emancipated, that you weren’t going to do that women’s stuff! He barely paused for breath. Why are you knitting?! You women’s libbers were all going to get jobs, so why are you knitting?!
He was angry but he was keeping his distance, and the situation was more absurd than dangerous. I was being harangued by a misogynistic stranger with knitting issues, whose insults came straight out of the 1970’s. Really, you can’t make this stuff up. There was no way I could knit—or think—with this going on, so I just blinked at him in amazement.
Finally, finally, the bus arrived. The bus driver lowered the wheelchair ramp and the man got on, still spewing righteous indignation. See that woman? She’s knitting! Those women’s libbers said they were going to do men’s work now, so why is she knitting?! Did you see her knitting? The look of utter bewilderment on the young female driver’s face was probably exactly like mine.