Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Knitting in Public

No stomach virus, no sinus infection, no allergies - I have no excuses for abandoning my blog for a week. Oh wait - I do have one - no air conditioning! It's like a billion degrees in Philadelphia, my airconditioner is on the fritz, and all I can say is -- I'm melting!!!! I must have lost five pounds in my own house. I had planned to do a post on how to wear the pi shawl - because figuring that one out was almost harder than knitting the darn thing - but it's too hot in my house to actually wear it. Post coming soon - as soon as the weather breaks.

Luckily, I am on vacation, so I've been doing a lot of poolside knitting. June 10th is apparently knitting in public day, and I've always knit in public, so I when I first heard about the "event" I wasn't sure what the big deal was. Lately, I've begun to understand how someone could be forced into the closet with their needles. On Saturday, before I was off to spend 12 hours with my over excitable 3 yr old niece, I decided I needed at least a good hour of quality knitting time, so I decided to knit in Rittenhouse Square. The temperature hadn't yet soared to its current unbearable level, and it was a beautiful day, lovely breeze, and there was a bench with my name on it. Well, my bench was several benches down from Michael's bench, one of the park's resident homeless guys. The homeless, the drug addled, the crazed - eh, they don't bother me - I usually get a professional daily dose. So, when Michael decided that he needed to chat about my knitting, I indulged him for a moment, and then nodded politely, and slipped on my earbuds. You're going under - yep. Ok, I won't bother you anymore. Liar. Every five minutes, he was back - to expound on the color of my yarn, about how it matched his tatoo, when he got to the part about how I reminded him of his ex-wife - the good one -- I knew it was time to abandon ship . . . I left my bench, the park, and my one hour of solitary knitting.

So, I headed to the train, and I knit on the platform. The train arrived, I boarded, and continued to knit, headphones firmly in place. Somewhere around Manayunk, two stops into my trip, there was an insane yelling in my ear. I turned, in a panic - and right in my face, like a movie image, there was this lunatic screaming in my ear about how he should have learned to knit after he had his leg blown off in Vietnam, how he would have knit anywhere, he didn't give a damn what people thought of him, I shouldn't give a damn - I should have learned, he said, again, and again. Yeah, I said, well, its never too late to learn . . . I got this bum leg, see . . . on and on. Luckily, he got off at the next stop, because there was no where to run, I was trapped.

And then, there was knitting in front of my 3 year old niece, when we had a rest from playing with princesses, swinging, singing, marching, coloring, making a project, bouncing the ball . . . why are you knitting? Because I like it. Why? Because it's relaxing. Why? . . . Why? why? why?

Some days . . . maybe its just better to leave the needles at home.


Christine said...

I had the same initial reaction as you - I KIP all the time. I've realized others are not as brave, so I'm trying to coordinate a Houston group to knit. I may even get to meet new (to me) knitters - how cool is that?

I just hope I don't have any encounters like yours. I might be forced to use the Pointy Sticks. ;-)

Dorothy said...

Sounds like a good time! ;-) Way up here in the sticks, people still think of knitting as an old lady kind of thing. It just isn't cool. I'm hoping to help break people of that outdated notion.

iSeL said...

I was hoping to see you while hanging out in Philly this weekend.
Don't ask me why. I know how stupid it is, but I still did.

Nit One Perl Two said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Nit One Perl Two said...

I am so happy I found your site. It appears we have more in common than knitting! I'll let you know when I complete the "world renound" triple lindee patern. It will be soon!

Ella said...

I love your blog....I often knit in public, and though no hobos have ever yelled at me about war,it still is a little weird looking. You rock! Keep KIPing, Ella (