Friday, May 29, 2009

Elizabeth meets the Yarn Harlot

On Wednesday I stopped my the yarn shop nearest my house to pick up some sock yarn, and while the woman who worked there was ringing up my purchase, we started chatting about how cool it was that the Yarn Harlot was going to be speaking at BookPeople on Thursday. After we'd chatted for a few minutes, the woman asked if I'd like a ticket to a pre-event reception with the Yarn Harlot. Of course I said yes.

So last night I put Elizabeth in her cutest little outfit and popped on a hat that my mom, aka Knittergran, made for her and headed out the door despite feeling like death warmed over thanks to allergies that seem to be mutating into a cold.

At the reception, I was sitting on the floor with a mom and her baby, who was a few months younger than Elizabeth, when a woman came over and joined us. She said, "This may sound odd, but does either of you have a mom who goes by Knittergran?" The woman's name is Suna, and my mom reads and comments on her blog regularly. Mom had left a comment yesterday telling Suna that I'd be at the reception and to look for a woman with a cute baby. Suna's friend took a picture of us to prove we'd actually met.

I also ran into a friend I haven't seen in years and years - I think I was pregnant with Ella the last time I saw her. She and I used to row on the same crew and run in the same marathon training group. I also taught her son to row when he was a kid. He's now 23 and finished with college. I felt really old when D told me that.

Towards the end of the reception, I ended up standing next to Stephanie while she was telling a story. My friend grabbed my camera from me and started taking pictures. At one point, Elizabeth reached out and grabbed Stephanie's shirt, so of course Stephanie turned to see who was grabbing her. She started flirting with Elizabeth, who flirted right back, cooing and blowing raspberries.

After Elizabeth and Stephanie had a good chat, Stephanie asked if she could hold her. Of course I said yes. Stephanie continued talking to people while playing with Elizabeth. I was so glad I my camera.

Stephanie held Elizabeth for about five minutes before handing her back over so that she could get ready for her reading.

The reading itself was lots of fun; she's a very good storyteller. She talked about the reasons people give for not knitting - don't have enough time, not patient enough - and about how people assume that if you knit you must be stupid, because how smart can you be if you are amused by playing with sticks and bits of string. She also talked about studies that are being done that show knitting - a repetitive, three-dimensional, visual task - really does help your brain function. One study showed that knitting can help reduce the effects of traumatic situations. But the researchers said knitting wasn't the best answer because, "it isn't practical to carry around emergency knitting." That got a big laugh.

Stephanie did her reading at a podium at the top of the stairs to the second floor of the bookstore. The audience sat facing the stairs. One of the best parts of the evening was watching the expressions of the customers coming up the stairs and suddenly being confronted with 100 people who were all knitting.

Elizabeth and I left when Stephanie started taking questions. Elizabeth was cranky, and I was feeling worse by the minute. Even though I felt awful, I was very glad I went.


MadMad said...

Well, you know you can't wash Elizabeth now, right? I'm not sure how practical that is with babies, but like carrying around emergency knitting, I'm SURE there's a way to make it work.

LTYM said...

What a great night for you. That's so funny that lady found you via your mom.

Also, can I have your baby? Just for a few hours?

Barb Matijevich said...

Nope. I'm not jealous. I'm sitting over her grinding my teeth just because.

That is one seriously cute baby. (Hat or no hat!)

joanna said...

I'm glad you had a good time. My friend Sarah was also there.

Baino said...

Who on earth would think you're stupid for knitting! It's a skill I wish I had . . oh hang on, I'm one of those people who gives lots of reasons for not knitting although I'm seriously contemplating knitting a pair of woolly socks. Great when bloggers meet up isn't it?

Suna Kendall said...

You are so lucky to have such a friendly and engaging baby! It was so nice meeting you!

Ann in NJ said...

Elizabeth is SUCH a beautiful baby it's no surprise that Stephanie had to flirt with her. And how nice that Stephanie is as nice and witty as she seems to be!

And I do carry emergency knitting, in my purse, for those long pick-up lines at school...

Cathy said...

what a cool experience! so glad you got the photos. it's funny what she said about the study--i've been knitting so much lately b/c it's really helping me deal better with my dad's health situation. Now I've got the study to prove it.