I saw this article and it got me thinking.
Is it right to judge anyone who picks up knitting needles?
The article seems positive overall but a few lines stood out.
“It helps with stress as well – knitting is the new mediation or yoga.”
Two things about this quote bugs me. Firstly, is it just men who deal with stress? No. I will put my hand on my heart and say I knit so I don’t kill people (I have that quote on a badge on my bag, I want it on a t-shirt and if I wasn’t such a scaredy cat I would have it as a tatto) knitting is my stress buster and the last time I checked I wasn’t male. Secondly it’s the new mediation or yoga. Right hmmm, I’m trying to think of way to respond that doesn’t sound bitchy but that statement makes it sound like a fad. Yes figures overall are showing an upward trend on people taking up knitting and that is fantastic news. It would be a terrible shame to see something like knitting disappear as a skill. But the above quote makes it sound like something people are doing just to seem cool. I knit. I am a proud knitter. It doesn’t mean it’s cool. It also makes me think what will happen when it suddenly become unpopular again. I feel yarn will go the way of all those unused exercise mats and aerobics DVDs – the back of the wardrobe never to be seen again.
Aside from the occasional funny look on public transport – more often than not from women
For some reason this line jarred with me. Once again I feel like saying this applies to all knitters not just the male ones. Also to add to the above when knitting is no longer de rigueur anymore it will become even more of a reason for people to stop and stare. I’ve been working at my new job about 2 months now and I still have people who stop and ask me what I am doing, and people who ask me of a daily basis are you still working on that one item. (The answer is yes, always yes, I’m not the worlds fastest knitter. The point I’m trying to make is that most of the people staring (ignoring the woman part because that winds me up for a totally separate sexist reason) is that people are staring because they are interested most of the time. It’s not a negative staring it’s a a intrigued stare.
the advantages of being a male knitter, the first of which is never being expected to make baby clothes, though admits there are occupational hazards; for example being treated like a shoplifter whenever you try to buy yarn
This final quote just makes me want to headdesk. Are men expected not to like children/babies? Are women suppose to just want to knit baby clothes? RAGE! I don’t like children. I’ve made this clear in my real life. My husband on the other hand loves children and children seem to really like him too. When we go to visit my goddaughter he is the one making goo goo noises while I stand there asking when will she be old enough for rational conversation. That doesn’t mean I don’t make knitted clothes for her because they are adorable. Equally my husband buys her gifts all the time as well and would make her presents if he had half an idea what to do with yarn and needles. Just rage at stereotypical gender roles.
And the whole feeling like a shoplifter in a wool shop. I don’t know what type of wool shop these men have been visiting but custom is custom. The only thing making a customer feeling uncomfortable accomplishes is ensuring that they don’t become a regular customer. The only comparison I can think of that fits the stupid stereotypes is my tiny female self going into a computer store and made to feel uncomfortable because “I’m a girl and girls know nothing about computers”. It reminds me of hathe time I was working at a supermarket in the electrical department. A man in his mid forties came up to me asking for the specifics of a certain television. As I opened my mouth to give him the details he proceeded to tell me that I obviously didn’t understand what he was wanting and wanted a male manager. I stood silent for a moment and then dutifully got my male manager. Who subsequently informed him he had no idea what the specs on the tv was but I would be more than able to help him. I then put the icing on the cake when he bought the 40″ TV by carrying it out to his car, all 5 foot 3 inches, 8 stone wet through, of me.
So the whole point of this is
rant post is to say if you wanna knit you do it unless your doing it for fashion in which case I’m totally judging you and if you happen to be male, kudos to you. Just don’t expect me to make a big deal of it.