That Kind of Week

IMG_1650In my line of work (health care) one sees a lot of “black” humour. It is the kind of humour that civilians, for lack of a better term, should likely never hear. It can be wildly inappropriate and can cross the line for sure. I have been thinking though, of why it exists and what purpose it may have for those of us who tend to rely on it.

Humour does a number of things. It can distance us from the just plain “awfulness” of what can be in front of us, the suffering of others. It can provide a common language between team members, that is a big one. My team certainly bonds over humour. It can provide a barrier when one does not wish to be vulnerable. It does all these and more. And sometimes it is just wicked funny, life can be so very, very absurd.

I can’t say there are a lot of fibre people in my immediate vicinity, particularly at work. A couple of people have looked at the handmade and sighed a little, their fingers touching the yarn,  asking me how I “loomed” a particular item. For some reason that is the word a lot of people use, whether it be in response to the knitted or the woven.  But there is a response.  And I might make a little joke. Recently I warned my colleagues that if I show up wearing a cowl, a sweater, handmade socks and two pairs of gloves and a hat that they should be very gentle with me. The handmade is a source of comfort, and if it is needed at that level – well look out! (Neutral is wearing only knitted socks. Kind of like the system they use in national forests for the fire danger. Knitted socks = low risk of forest fire.)

It is good to always have an item in the finished bin. That is becoming very clear.  A number of people in the vicinity are having severe difficulty. The kind where you can only offer sympathy, a cup of tea, an ear. And maybe a pair of socks, or a scarf on short notice. In my practice tradition we call this kind of offering, when it is done in meditation and beyond, the offering of merit. That whatever good that comes from our actions be offered to others. Really, it is a sincere wish that “all will be well” without attached ideas of what “well” really is. A sincere wish that suffering be eased. (Socks not required)

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I was going to go all “deep” and put a picture of yet another soaring mountain vista. This came to mind instead. This piece of art (???) is about twenty feet high. She resides, with flood lights to illuminate her at night, on the expansive stretch of desert near Death Valley. I asked, I really did but the staff at the casino nearby, (the only building for miles by the way) just told me that the owner “used to have a cow.”

OK.

6 thoughts on “That Kind of Week

  1. Carole November 9, 2013 / 6:25 pm

    I love it. I saw all 900+ of your travel buddy’s pictures. A totally fantastic place. I also know what you mean about the sick humour. Brings back memories. Much love

  2. mosaicthinking November 9, 2013 / 8:18 pm

    Oh, I need to take a photo for your you of Melbourne’s “cow up a tree” piece of public art. And on the subject of loomed pieces, I had a colleague put in an order for a beanie, after I had carefully explained that I can use my floor loom to make table runners, towels, scarves. People who don’t craft with fibre don’t have a frame of reference or a vocabulary to work with. Even I have started to look at cloth differently since I started weaving.

    • warpandwoofknitting November 9, 2013 / 10:19 pm

      That sounds great, I would love to see the cow up a tree! And I absolutely relate to your comment about seeing cloth differently, weaving has opened my eyes to textiles in so many new ways. Thanks for stopping by.

  3. TextileRanger November 10, 2013 / 3:49 pm

    I am always amazed at the generosity of fiber crafters, to take an item on which they spent hours (and probably, a fair amount of money) and give it away, often to a stranger or someone they will never even see. I think we get so much comfort from our handwork that we are trying to extend it in condensed form to someone who needs comfort. I have made quilts for specific causes, but I had not thought about keeping smaller projects around just to be ready to give to that person who needs it. I love to knit in the evenings, but I always think, I already have so many scarves, I shouldn’t make any more – but now I am going to follow your idea and make them just to have on hand. It seems like I would have thought of this before, but I just didn’t. So thank you for forging a new connection in my mind!

    • warpandwoofknitting November 10, 2013 / 11:00 pm

      Hey, I am glad to help spark an idea. I went through a phase of trying to choose the recipient before I made something, and being oh so careful to not accumulate – maybe its a phase but now I can’t keep the stash of little knitted items full. Sad to think it is because people are having a hard time, and maybe its selfish on my part, but it makes me feel better to give a token of caring. So, I keep on knitting!

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