Sunday, September 11, 2011

Socks: A Love Story

When I first saw this yarn, I decided it was time to knit again.  Knitting is symbolic for me, an indicator that I am calm enough to slow down, an indicator that I have free time or that I am willing to make free time just for me.  Knitting socks is yet another indicator, challenging the impatient side of me to do something which takes a long time and which requires doing it all over again, i.e. making the second sock.  And knitting these socks?  The yarn was much finer than what I have worked with and I decided to try a new knitting technique, to challenge myself beyond my comfort.

All that, with no pre-determined destination for the socks, should I ever finish them, and yet I undertook the project.  Knitting for me is much like cooking; in both activities  I get as much pleasure from the task - or tasks- involved as I do from the end project, and particularly sharing the end project.  

I found incredible joy in knitting what started out as "the goddamn socks" and ultimately became the meditation socks.  The intimacy of sock knitting, with its small needles and the ability to hold the whole piece in my hands was comforting,and I fell in love with the calm and experience of knitting all over again. I briefly dated a man who thought he should be the rightful recipient.  As with cooking, I have learned not to lavish too much of myself on someone too soon, and the unfinished socks remained with me after this man left my life.

When I realized who might be the perfect recipient for the socks- and I considered many - the experience came full circle.  I gave them to a friend with whom I've had a fragile relationship, and it felt really good.  I could never have knit for him before, because it might have implied an expectation.  Now it was possible.  And the love story of the socks turns out to be with me.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Why Not?

I don't care much about fashion, but I certainly like clothes.   Contradictory?  Not at all.The whims and vagaries of fashion no longer interest me, and I rarely follow what is happening on runways as that has little effect on my life.  But a great pair of shoes or a perfect dress, some inventive spin on a basic or a knock-me-over-with-a-feather coat and I get a little weak in the knees.  My closet is full, yet the siren call of something fabulous and new often calls. 

A friend recently commented that I was lucky because I have a lifestyle which allows me to dress creatively, as opposed to her life which she described as being not worthy of artful dressing.  Baloney!  While it is true that I get to show up at work while she shows up in her studio, I show up like this out of choice.  

 I went to the movies the other night with a friend and decided to toss on my new sassy shoes, just because.  They made me happy, and as my friend can attest, made others smile with delight.  Could I have shown up in flip-flops or sneakers?  Sure, but I didn't, my choice.  Could he have shown up in his fleece vest and dad-jeans?  Yep, but he, too, is trying on some new looks - and looking and feeling good.

My daughter has said it perfectly: "If you have to get dressed, why not make it fabulous?". Why not, indeed!