Thursday, January 30, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Persons attempting to find a motive in this narrative will be prosecuted;
persons attempting to find a moral in it will be banished;
persons attempting to find a plot in it will be shot. --Mark Twain, Huckleberry Finn

No motives, no morals, and certainly no plot in this blog...

KnitDweebs Defined...and a Short History of the Etymology
I suppose I will bow to public pressure and try to wax poetic about the word "KnitDweeb" for those who want to know.

Actually, I coined the word (at least, I think I did) during a prolonged and otherwise torturous stint on a BIO (By Invitation Only) mailing list.

Here's the story: Several years ago, a knitting friend decided that she wanted to start her own list but that it would be limited to those people that she wanted. A number of those people, myself included, were KnitList members. Loopy was also on this list for a very short time, I believe. (Loop, if I'm wrong, feel free to correct me--my memory's a tad rusty.)

Much to my dismay, the list membership grew to include a disproportionate number of knitters who seemed to be interested in a limited number of techniques, who used garter stitch to the exclusion of almost everything else, who apparently thought that knitting warshcloths was state-of-the-art, who would have rather bought Wool-Ease on sale at the local Wal-Mart than to save their pennies and buy decent yarn. And even this would have been acceptable if these knitters had been novices.

But they were not. What was worse, they had no interest in looking past the restricted and restrictive confines of their abilities and considered anyone who did a "purist." All the while spewing religious homilies, bad poetry about knitting, and sending each other sappy e-cards. Gad.

So I began calling them "KnitDweebs, at first only to Loopy and also to the list owner, who I'm afraid was in fact one of the biggest KnitDweeb of them all. I called them KnitDweebs in part because I could not understand the limitations that they placed upon themselves, in knitting and in life. And in part because I find that those people tend to be the world's biggest hypocrites. And that I truly can't abide. Beneath the sweetness and light often resides a nastiness and viciousness that masquerades as "well-intentioned."

The denouement of this whole episode was that I was unceremoniously thrown off the list for voicing my opinion, as was the list owner (don't ask, it's a long, stupid story--ask Loopy). She groveled her way back onto the list. I was relieved to be rid of it, since I had really stayed because of my friendship with the list owner.

KnitDweebism is a state of mind, pure and simple. In my opinion, it's not what you knit but the attitude you take towards your knitting and anything else you do in life. Many members of the internet knitting community reflect what is really just a microcosm of what's out there at large: small-mindedness, hypocrisy, laziness, the inability to see beyond the end of one's nose, and the unwillingness to learn and challenge oneself.

I think it may be a national epidemic. I hope I'm wrong. I think I may be right.

But I've met some really rare and handy people nonetheless. They're out there. So there's hope. There's always that.

In Memoriam
JJR, 12/25/46-1/31/02.
The best and the brightest.
Always loved, always missed.
The original rare and handy man.

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