I knit. And I cook, write, take pictures. All for one low price.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

The Yarn Harlot in Northampton, MA

See these streets of Northampton? Totally devoid of knitters.
But wait...why do I see lots and lots of women who are carrying a pocketbook AND another bag which looks suspiciously like a knitting bag?

Ahhh...here we go. 4:30 pm. We are beginning to convene in front of the Calvin theatre.
5 pm. We have a line. It went all the way in the (shady!! we had 91 degrees in the sun, people!) alleyway.

5: 30, crowd's filling in the theatre nicely. The biggest knit night I've ever been to. So cool. Everyone sittting, knitting, chatting. Hundreds (I heard the estimate was near 600) of knitters from everywhere, all generations, happily together.

Sorry for the darkness in this next shot. Steve Elkins of Webs is presenting Stephanie with glass of locally brewed beer. She restrained herself though and didn't touch it to the end.

"Picture your stash. Picture everyone else's stash. Picture all the stashes in the world, picture all the yarn shops in the world. That's a lot of wool.
And to this day, there's not a machine that can shear a sheep. It comes down to one sweaty shearer wrestling a sheep to the ground.
My imaginary sheep shearer looks like a shirtless muscle packed guy in Australia. What does your shearer look like?"

I have to tell you, if there had been room, I would have been ROFL. Nobody I know has ever talked about Stephanie's impeccable comedic timing. Not only is the woman brilliant, and caring, and a feminist, and a fabulous knitter, and a fabulous writer, she is a comedian. Canadian comedian. So funny I had to put my sock away because I kept doubling over into my dpns.
I wish there was a podcast available of this talk, for all of you to hear what she had to say about CHOKE (Cultural Humiliation Of Knitters Everywhere). You know, the one where knitters get discriminated against simply because they.....knit. By banks (if you want a loan to open a yarn shop. I know from my own experience. I had to pretend to the loan officer that I was a car salesman and had to translate yarn into cars for him. True story.). By bars who think knitters can't knit and drink at the same time. By book stores who think that knitters don't buy books that talk about knitting or that knitters don't come to readings by authors who write about knitting.
CHOKE operatives, according to Stephanie, underestimate knitters' intelligence, generosity (see "knitters without borders" on her blog, on the side bar), sheer number, and ability to translate dollars into yarn.

After the event, the streets of Northampton are packed with knitters. Yes those are all knitters waiting to cross the street. On their way back to Webs. Presumably to get an autograph. I think also to translate dollars into yarn. (I went ahead and did that before the event. "We will not talk about that.")

At the signing, after an hour of waiting, I get near the table. I have no idea what Linda Roghaar is looking for under the table. I hope she found it.

Last but not least, the Bohus. I think I should have gotten an autograph from that sweater, too.

Thank you, Stephanie, for an amazing evening. Going to see you is even much much better than reading your books.

PS: I know I promised you 20 hats. I made 12. I have pictures to prove it, since I was too shy to plop them all in front of you right then. But they went into the donation basket.


Leslie said...

You're the lady whose husband then got the loan for the building to store his toys? It was a great story (sad but true).

She was a lovely speaker and you're right about her timing. Can you imagine a "knitting with the Joan's" boat trip with Stephanie being the lounge headliner? There's a knitters dream...

MizCat said...

Thank you for your account of our girl the Yarn Harlot. I saw her last Friday and found her to be the dearest person in person. She makes me glad I started knitting at the tender age of 63 yep.....thanks again loved your account now I can rest easy "she did well at Webbs". She freaked out the muggles in Toronto her home town. I was there and it was fun to watch the staff scramble and wonder what happened to them.

knitting is fun MizCat

AmyS said...

Thanks for the great report on Stephanie's talk at WEBS! I'm so glad you had fun (and a little jealous, too). Love all your new goodies from the earlier post, as well. Good luck with the sock pattern. I can't wait to see what you come up with!

Karin said...

no I am not the one in Stephanie's story, I am somebody else. But she did tell that story, and then during the Q&A I added mine.

Laura said...

Hey Karin!
So, are you going to hold up your knitted sock the next time you go to an ATM so that the world knows not to mess with knitters? I figure I can hold Isaac with one hand and make him hold the sock...influencing the next generation!

Jody said...

I thoroughly enjoyed reading all about your visit with Stephanie and I have to admit,I'm a little envious that you actually saw her in person. I rolled on the floor laughing while reading her books. I can't imagine her being any more funny in person. Looking forward to reading "Casts Off". Thanks for sharing her visit.

Anastacia said...

I came to visit you from one of the yahoogroups - you mentioned you saw Stephanie. I wanted to go - ended up at work boo hoo! Anyways, thanks for sharing the great post & even better, the photos. I added your blog to my rss feeder! (I'm a big lurker on all my blogs... so that's why I tell people when I add them, you won't get comments from me often, but I'll be reading)

patw813 said...

I agree, it was terrific - I thought she was even better adlibbing in response to the questions than in her prepared remarks!
We couldn't go back to the store afterwards, as my friend had quite a drive home even after getting back to the Capital District, so thanks for all the pictures, so we can see what it was like.

Kayten Kraft said...

Sheila Bosworth forwarded me the picture of Laurie and me. Then I went on the long journey to find your blog, which finally ended when I went to the KAL for "No Sheep for You". Thanks for all your kind words. I have bookmarked your blog and will let you know when mine is up.
Now...Have you thought of a pattern yet!?! Just kidding...