Thursday, November 17, 2016

Knitting Adjacent

I've been searching for a knitting metaphor for the world over the past days since the US election. Not so much for you, for myself. Knitting focuses me when I am troubled, gives me tangible progress when information work feels horrendously intangible, and has the added side benefit of connecting me to a large community of people who share my hobby--if not all of my opinions (e.g. DPNs vs. Magic Looping for socks. I'm #TeamDPN).

Knitting is often made up of big projects. Long projects. Anyone who has ever undertaken a large shawl, the second sock at that tiny gauge, or a full size afghan knows the slog, the haul, the do-I-really-have-that-much-more-yarn-to-go feeling.

That is what is keeping me going right now. Following the election and facing tumultuous and scary time ahead, I'm grasping on to all the knitting metaphors I can find. This may be simplistic but it gives me a little bit of reassurance.

I can do big things. And each big thing is made up of many thousands of small things. I cannot do much knitting most days -- I've been too tired, too overwhelmed, and still working on the train. But it's rare that at least one stitch doesn't get done. This is then my approach to the larger project of trying to deal with a world where the word of the year is "post-truth."

I will be trying to document my single-stitch actions, privately. This isn't about seeking accolades, it's about knowing for myself that I have made those stitches and to remind myself of each activity so I can repeat some of them.

We have much work to do. We have many people to advocate for and defend.

And I have pointy needles.

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