Monday, October 16, 2006

A Socktoberfest Story: Some Moggle Response’s to a Twenty-Something KIP’ing

Preface: I don’t normally KIP, and that’s only because when I’m out in public I’m normally occupied. The only exception to this is when I’m waiting for my car at the shop. A few days ago I had my brakes replaced and state inspection which required an extended waiting period (I have to wait, because we only have one car). So after a walk to Dunkin Donuts for breakfast I came back, sat down in the rather cramped waiting room, and whipped out the Baudelaire sock I’ve been working on…

I noticed a couple lingering looks as I sat there with the lace chart and yarn ball on my lap and needles in hand (magic-loop! Yeah, baby). I brush them off. It was at this point I began to wonder when exactly someone would inquire/comment about what I was making. It was no surprise to me that the first one was an elderly man who waiting for his car to be prepped for his seasonal migration somewhere south of the Mason-Dixon Line:
“Watch ya making?” he asked. I sensed he was desperately trying to break the silence as I’m not one for small talk, “a hat?”
Now, I’m well into shaping the gusset on this toe-up sock that is meant for my rather petit step-mother. But I try to hide my “WTF?” look and muster a polite response.
“No, it’s a sock.” I lift WIP slightly to reveal the sock-like shape.
“Oh, definitely need those around here.” He replied.
Indeed. The frost on my car windows was quite thick and the act of scraping them off ended up making me a tad late for my 7:30 appointment. At least I don’t live in Buffalo.

About 30 minutes later…

The owner/manager of the establishment looks intently and asks “What are you making?”
“A sock,” As you can tell from my minimal response, I’m not much of a people person.
“Do you have kids, or something?”
Huh? My brain scrambles to make the connection between knitting and kids, which is somehow obvious to him but not to me. Does he think I’m knitting a children’s sock?
Again, politely: “No, I just like making socks. It’s a Christmas present for my stepmother.”
The owner/manager, who really is a nice guy btw, then adds that his wife crochets and he thought that’s what I was doing until he saw the two needles. In hind-site, I guess the “kid” question was a more politically correct way of asking me if I was pregnant. Thus, proving that the cliché of the “knitting-mother-to-be” is still alive and well. But this is just an assumption. I can’t help but to wonder, though.

Sometime time later, still knitting away in the cupboard/waiting room…

One of the mechanics squeezes into the cupboard for something, notices me knitting away, and gives me a wide smile.
Ummm, okay. Trying not to get too creeped out I continue on with my gusset increasing. I guess I was expecting something like “hey, check out the grannie!” So it’s not so bad, I guess.

500 years later…

The same mechanic returns to the cupboard but this time he has to wait in line for the boss-man.
“Man, you’ll have a whole (something or another, I couldn’t understand him since he had a slight case of mush-mouth) before we’re done here.”
I smile, interpreting it as a compliment to my mad-knitting skills, but before I could get a response out the owner/manager replies, jokingly:
“Maybe not, if you actually finish sometime this year,”
Hmm, come to think of it, I was there for a little over 2 hours. But I really didn’t care since I was knitting.


Erin said...

See, KIP is not so bad is it? I've definitely done my share. Yeah, some people are sort of funny about it, but most of them are just genuinely interested in what you're making!

Karin said...

Wow that's a long time to wait....but all that knitting time, so jealous.

I KIP ALL the time. I take the bus or train everywhere so it's quite easy. I've never once had someone comment on my knitting.

katiedid said...

I think it's fun to see how long it takes people to comment too. I was knitting before class the other day and this girl that I usually talk to came in and just sort of ignored the knitting... and me, where usually she would be talking up a storm. Then the guy that sits in front of me came in and immediately asked what I was making. Then, the girl immediately asked if I would make her some mittens. Ugh.

Makes the time pass by quick though! I love bringing knitting to dr. appt's and stuff because of that!

Cathy said...

Maybe some people feel weird about asking about your knitting. Or maybe they think they'll bother you if they ask. The questions really didn't bother me, and the people weren't rude or anything. I just think the responses (or lack thereof) are pretty interesting.

Anonymous said...

I love to KIP, and I love when people ask questions. It's a time to share the art of knitting, even if it is a dumb guy making conversation. Chances are he'll tell the gal in his life that he saw someone knitting.

About two years ago while I was getting snow tires put on my car, I was knitting a sweater while waiting. An older gentleman told me that his wife had been a knitter and how much he missed sitting in the living room watching her knit while they watched Wheel of Fortune. He said it was one of his fondest memories of his wife. He said as she sat and knitted, he could always smell her perfume. They had been married almost 45 years when she passed away. I could have cried, but I didn't want tears of sadness on the baby sweater. Superstitious, of course!