Thursday, September 20, 2007

Heard the Yarn Harlot, finished Honorine

I tried to explain to Husband who the Yarn Harlot was, and why I was going to see her. She doesn't teach people how to knit, but it's more knitting commentary, like all those sports analyst shows where 4 guys will sit around and talk about sports and not actually play the sports.

Yesterday the doors to the Hilan Theater opened at 5pm. I got there at 5:30ish and there was a line out on the sidewalk. It was all women, all white women, as far as I could tell. Out of the crowd in the theatre, I saw only one black woman. And there was me.

Before Stephanie Pearl-McPhee aka the Yarn Harlot came on, Knitch raffled off some prizes. As I knit on Honorine, I balanced my raffle ticket on the knitting and tried not to knock over my wine. I was concerned that someone in the row in front of me would win, jump up, knock over her chair at the thrill of winning 2 skeins of Malabrigo, and knock over my wine. Didn't happen. Nor did I win anything.

The Hilan Theater seems to be more set up for live music performances because there were three levels, 2 bars in the open space, concrete floors, a rail for putting drinks, and they had to set up rows of folding chairs for us. I sat in the upper level, three rows back, and couldn't see anything. Which in the end was fine, because most people had their eyes on their knitting, not on Stephanie Pearl-McPhee. The e-mail from Knitch said that there were 700 confirmations sent out, but it looked more like 250. But I'm no gauge of crowds.

I'm looking forward to seeing what she posts about on her blog about her trip to Atlanta. She did mention at that the Atlanta airport, in the ladies' room, she ran into Vickie Howell of Knitty Gritty. Makes me wonder what she was doing in town.

YH was funny, and talked mostly about how people don't understand knitting and knitters. A lot of what she talked about has been covered in her books and her blogs, so I won't discuss too much of it here. One of my favorite lines was "There are no machines that shear sheep, so every single skein of yarn started with a man with a seriously pissed off sheep between his legs. In my mind, he's a sweaty, shirtless Australian named Mick."

I really liked her discussion about the ability of knitters to change the world, using the example of Knitters Without Borders, her effort to raise funds for Doctors Without Borders. It brought tears to my eyes because as the primary fundraiser for my organization, I really would love to be able to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars from individual donors, as she has.

And I had to laugh as she compared fundraising to knitting, each requiring small gestures repeated over and over and over, ad nauseum, to create a beautiful, useful, and larger whole.

The first shift of book signing was changed to occur at the theater and the second shift at Knitch. I was in the first shift, but didn't get her to sign my books. It was getting late, I hadn't had anything to eat, the space was crowded and confusing with people trying to line up for the book signing, people trying to leave, people trying to get to the bathrooms. I got crabby so left. To go to Knitch to shop.

The store was full too, which didn't help my mood. What did help was fondling all the yarn. I did buy some hand painted sock yarn (don't remember the company now) to make another So-Called Scarf, nevermind that I haven't finished the first one. I'm really liking the stitch pattern. Mainly, I was there for some bamboo circular needles, which they keep behind the counter, so if I have to stand in line for needles, I might as well buy some yarn and make the wait worthwhile. And that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

When I got home, I showed the yarn to Husband who saw that the skein of 450 yards of machine washable, hand painted yarn was $20.50 and asked what are you going to make with that? I said a scarf. The colors are pale but not pastel, mostly light blue with some pink, light green, and then blips of chocolate brown. I'm trying to branch out from my usual jewel tones and primary colors.

Then I finished Honorine before bed. Now all that remains is to send it through the washer and dryer and it'll be ready for wearing. Pictures next week.

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