Is this how football fans feel ?
Some of the men in my family are mad keen football fans. While I pretend not to understand their motivation, their dogged insistence on loyalty and attendance despite regular disappointment, in fact, I am quite envious. Every second weekend they get to meet up with thousands of similar afficionados, sing favourite songs and have an overwhelming sensation of belonging and comradeship. Every weekend our media devote inordinate attention to the details of that weekend's game, filling column inches and TV and radio waves with detailed analysis of their hobby. Our very society appears a great enabler to their hobby. Discussing football is quite normal, a common currency, shared amongst relative strangers even - the window cleaner, the distant relation...It is so easy to fit in.
I got a taste of how this feels at the Wool Tribe Christmas Party last Saturday evening, arranged by Jo and Mica of EYF. This might seem an odd comparison, but run with it - lots of knitters, assembled in public, in a cool bar, just knitting. Like it was normal. Sharing a common interest, a common language. Discussing favourite yarns and popular patterns with the same insight and debate as my menfolk will discuss players and managers. Lubricating the activity with a bit of seasonal booze. Owning the space, a safety and comradeship in numbers. As knitters , we have begun to create the kind of media programming which supports our hobby through podcasts and vlogs. (Still little sign of public broadcasters paying us any attention though). But this was my first experience of a large scale knitting gathering. A 'coming out', unabashedly demonstrating our skill, our expertise and our comradeship. I loved it ! We just need some songs next :)