Sunday, April 6, 2008

Harlot-y Goodness

I had a very nice weekend. The big highlight was getting to attend the Yarn Harlot's talk on Saturday. I got there a little early and found some of the other Stitch 'n' Bitchers. We sat and knitted for a while, chatting and people-watching. I saw this woman:

She was crocheting the blanket she has thrown over her shoulder, while holding her baby and talking to some of the other attendees. Very impressive.

Katie brought my favorite little girl, Gretchen. Unfortunately I seem to have fallen out of favor with Gretchen. Not so Sarabeth. (Did I do a good enough cropping job, Sarabeth?)

I choose to believe that Gretchen can sense the Mommy vibe, and (being childless) I don't have it. Yep, that's it. It isn't that she doesn't like me--certainly not!

Jessi had had the brilliant idea to put together a basket to raffle off to benefit Doctors Without Borders--we knitters raised almost $600! Not bad at all.

It was a really nice atmosphere--very relaxed, congenial, and comfortable. But I doubt anyone was upset when the guest of honor made her appearance and interrupted conversations.

She's there, I promise.

I was in the second-to-last row, so this shows pretty well how intimate the venue was. Even though Ms. Pearl-McPhee is standing on top of/behind a fountain. (To keep to riffraff at a distance, like a moat? Perhaps.) She talked for, I would guess, nearly an hour. Longer than I thought she would--a nice surprise! She's very witty, and there was plenty of laughter to wake up any babies in the audience who had managed to fall asleep. And there were quite a few babies--all very well-behaved. Future knitters, observing closely! No time for fussing.

Joseph-Beth had set up a system for the signing, assigning group numbers to tickets that came with the book, much like an airline. ("Now seating passengers in rows 23 and up, that's group C...") And like an airline, the Harlot had a pre-boarding system. Anyone with small children, or who wasn't feeling well, or who had to get home to pay the babysitter, or whatever, was invited to the front of the line. Around this time they called for ticket holders in group A (mememe!) to come forward as well. Katie asked if she could come with me--she didn't have a book, but she wanted to say hello to the Harlot. Because she had Gretchen with her, people kept shooing us forward in the line. We tried to insist that we weren't pre-boarding, that we could wait, but others insisted harder. Everyone was very gracious--thanks for your kindness, strangers in line!

Finally it was my turn. I pulled out the Kilt Hose and thrust them at the Harlot and started babbling like a dork.

Did I say dork? I don't think "dork" covers it. Here we can see me pointing at the book, stuttering and trying to convey that I really related to the section of the book where she talks about perspective and specifically mentions kilt hose: after knitting a pair of these, regular socks seem like a piece of cake. I told her that now I feel like I can do anything. She was very kind, and didn't laugh at me. In fact, she told me that my (David's) kilt hose are beautiful.


Here we can see that I managed to pull it together enough to at least make eye contact. I'm grinning like an idiot following receiving a compliment on my knitting from the Yarn Harlot, but clearly I'm not making too much of an ass of myself. (She doesn't look frightened, at least!)

I'm holding the traveling sock; it gets lost against my black shirt.

And here are Katie, Gretchen, and the Harlot. (I just realized that I've been avoiding referring to her as "Stephanie" because it seems too informal. "The Harlot," however, appears to be perfectly acceptable to me.)

And after this, we were done. A few of us stayed and talked and knitted for a while. At one point Katie was juggling Gretchen and her phone, trying to add a new number one-handed, so I grabbed the baby and declared that since Momma needed two hands, she and I were going to hang out for a minute. She fussed for about a second and a half, then calmed down and sucked her thumb contentedly. Awww! After a while, some of us decided to go grab some food and a few drinks. We KIPed, talked, laughed, and generally had a grand old time. I made it home by 2, and I even got to sleep in on Sunday.

And I'm still all squee-licious over my kilt hose. Beautiful, she said! I mean, I knew they were beautiful before, and I've always been incredibly proud and felt very accomplished, but how validating!


fragglesmurf said...

They are beautiful, hose of love. And if David doesn't like them, you can strangle him with them.

Barbara said...

OMG, Ann! There you are right by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee! I lovelovelove the pic of the two of you conferring just like real people, instead of one dork and one knitting goddess. I'm experiencing a bit of a knitting crisis of confidence and these pix might be just the pick-me-up I need. Squee!

Katie said...

hey!!!!!!!! I've been stalking your blog for pictures and finally you posted them! thanks!

you weren't a dork at all!

fragglesmurf said...

OH! Check the Harlot's blog! YOu're in there! WOOOHOOO!