24 June 2010

Sometimes, it's hard not to be rude.

So, while I was happily engrosed in the business of teaching a lovely, attentive class the concept of Irish Crochet Lace last Sunday in This Is Knit, I happened to overhear a mother pointing us out to her little girl at the door to the shop. "Ah..." I thought. "Any moment now, that little lady will be hooked. She'll be interested, ask questions, her Mom will have to teach her a fibre art, and a new generatioon of creative crafters will be ensured." I felt a little smug, I don't mind telling you, that my little class should be the focus of such a monumental moment.

Then, as you'd expect, it all came crashing down horribly.

"Look..." the Mom uttered "They're knitting".

It got me thinking about Muggles' perception of fibre arts, and I have come to the conclusion, that, as a crocheter, as a lover of the hook, as a woman who can knit, but doesn't, I have been left in a position where I have two choices only and that both lead to uncomfortableness.

In this instance, I chose Option One. Ignore it. I was teaching a class. I had people ready to sponge my knowledge. To interrupt would be to let them down, so I continued explaining the awesome power of the double crochet. But it bothered me. I left two people ignorant of the differences between these two very different crafts.

But under normal circumstances, I tend to go for Option Two. Be Rude.
"Ah, knitting"
"No. Crochet. Knitting uses two or more needles. I use one hook." Now, I seem like an asshole.

"Ah, knitting. I used to do that"
"So, then you know it's actually crochet" Now, I'm a smartass.

"Ah, knitting. My Mom used to do that"
"Actually, it's crochet. Do you not knit then?" Yea, now I sound superior AND judgemental.

And my all-time favourite:
"Knitting? I didn't think people DID that anymore"
"Well, I don't. I crochet" If they're going to be rude, I have no problem returning the favour.


Bear in mind, these are all interactions I have had. Mostly at the bus stop. Mostly while trying to count stitches. But how about you? Have you ever found a way out of one of these conversations without sounding like a total arse? I'd love to know how you did it...


  1. True Story:
    In a restaurant, while tatting. With a SHUTTLE.
    "Oh, are you learning to crochet?"
    "No. I'm tatting."
    "Oh, my great aunt used to do that!" [apparently everyone has a great aunt who tats. Including me, but mine is actually awesome, so it's beside the point.] "So, are you just learning then? I thought that was a lost art!"
    "No. I've been tatting for more than 10 years. And I'm not lost. I know exactly what I'm doing."

  2. hehe. At least the person in question had heard of tatting. : )

  3. Ooo look at you and your crochet snobbishness. (Joking!) I think you just need to be polite over and over and over again. Its not the same I know, but people ask me about my tattoos all the time. Some people made rude comments and some people presume more than they should. But at the end of the day I'm the one who has the choice to give them a true impression about what they are and why I have them/what they mean to me. I try to be polite and honest and welcome their curiosity. People probably only comment because they are curious. It's not their fault they don't know the difference. People rarely get what "swing dancing" is when I tell them I do it but once I explain most people are interested. Though if the person is rude or anything then yes, be rude back. You can even poke them in the eye with your hooky-thing!

  4. True, enough, hon. But, the main difference in our experiences is that I doubt people often come up to you and comment on how well you've drawn on yourself with pen... : P

    You're right about the curiosity, though. It's not as if I slink off into a shady corner away from the attention of others. I shall try to be more patient next time and see what happens.

  5. Actually I have have a few people come up to me and try to rub my tattoos off or tell me that I have something drawn on me!!! Or that I have a thread hanging out of my t-shirt, or that they thought it was a wierd nicotine patch...
    :) I find it all quite amusing (though the strangers touching me with asking can be a bit odd).

  6. I need to come up with a list of possible answers like that.

    I bought a t-shirt which 'answers' ppl when they are looking at you knitting, I must find it again and take pics!

  7. this t-shirt?:

  8. http://www.cafepress.co.uk/+answers_purple_jr_ringer_tshirt,99079973



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