I want to thank everyone for their thoughtful comments on my last post. So many comments just reiterated the point that I was hoping to make: this isn't about political party - there is more than enough incivility to go around. No group of people is innocent of its vitriolic members. Alas. But I can't help but think that speaking out for civility is worth doing. As a linguist, I have lectured to my students about the difference between freedom of speech and hate speech; I have talked to them about how absolutely, fundamentally necessary it is to insist upon free speech, upon the right of every human being to speak their mind without fear. Hate speech is not free speech - hate speech makes freedom of speech impossible to practice. It shuts free speech down by creating fear and hate. So, as a person who has always stood, passionately and publicly, for freedom of speech, I also stand for civility in the practice of that freedom, so that it is a freedom that we all can enjoy - even, and perhaps especially, people who think differently than I do.
One of the best things about reading everyone's comments was seeing yet again how really diverse everyone who comments here is, in politics, region, race, and religion (just to name a few). And yet, here we all are, commenting civilly and supportively (whether or not we're in agreement about any particular thing), brought together only by a shared interest in fiber and the manipulation thereof. It makes me wonder if, as a second act to the knitting of hats, we shouldn't descend upon the capitol with fiber and our fiber manipulation implements of choice, to teach our representatives to knit, crochet, spin, weave, whatever it is we know how to do best - wouldn't you want to be a fly on the wall to hear the conversations that might take place then? You may say I'm dreamer...
A few other things came together this past weekend as well. On Friday afternoon, knowing that our girls were going to a school Parents' Night Out (fundraiser for Younger Daughter's class), Rick and I were dithering about what to do with our sudden spare time when a dear friend called to tell me that she was sure it was too late and too much but she suddenly couldn't use her tickets to the Kodo drummers, and did we want them? Why, yes! Yes, we do! And off we went. It was unreal. Like standing in the middle of a crashing wave. I don't know what to say except that if you ever get a chance to go, grab it and don't look back.
Then, on Saturday, Rick took the kids and that same dear friend's son and went to see the naval airshow down in San Diego. They had an absolutely wonderful time, and I got five hours alone to do laundry, clean the house, and then (as my reward) spin and knit. As part of my commitment to myself to spin at least two ounces of fiber a month, I sat down first to spin the superwash BFL from Sincere Sheep that I bought at the Dixon fiber festival last fall.
I am also plugging away on the sweater for my mom. I can't remember if I posted the starter picture of the first half of the front?
I'm also working away on the yarn from the first RSC shipment of the year (warning - SPOILER). Much as I loved the two patterns that came with this shipment (if you're interested, you can pop onto the Rav thread - there are pictures), they were both stranded colorwork knitted in mediumweight sock yarn (quite thick), and while I actually cast on to start a pair, I knew in my heart of hearts that I'd never wear them here in sunny SoCal, so I frogged them. I decided instead that this is the perfect yarn to finally knit myself a Daybreak Shawl, and I have cast on and am working my way through the first, solid colored, section. This will be a slow, long-term knit, to be picked up when I go to a meeting or am reading a book. Lots and lots and lots of stockinette. I don't have a picture of what's been knitted, but here are the two yarns together; I am delighted beyond words with these colors.