Sunday, 24 February 2013

Tears of a Clown

“I decided it is better to scream. Silence is the real crime against humanity.”

Yesterday, I cried. I wept solidly for 15 minutes while sitting at my laptop trying to work out how to make a website. I needed a break. After a quick cup of Chamomile tea and a square of chocolate, I went back to the laptop, stared at what was in front of me and started crying again. At about 8.30pm I finally gave in. After sending an angry email to my ‘website consultant’, I retired to my bed with knitting in hand.

“If I can’t make sense of this website, I will make a scarf!”

Well, I made a bit of scarf, allowing myself to drop off in dim light, the bed strewn with yarn, needles and a couple of books in mid read. I slept soundly, undisturbed.

This morning I woke up and felt….better! A lot better! I spent the evening before beating myself up for not always succeeding, for failing to get a date, for getting a blow out on a very bald car tyre the day before. Somehow, allowing the misery to take-over purged the upset within and cleared the air.

This Sunday morning is a new day and I feel somewhat invigorated. Consenting to the mild spat of depression, was accepting myself for all my failings, as natural as they are. The life of a singleton (in rural Ireland) can be a thorny road. Starting a business up as a sole trader, during a recession is rocky road. Looking out at another day can be …… inspiring! 

Sunday, 10 February 2013

Flannery, Nellie & Agatha

I saw this and couldn’t resist sharing with all of you in the Sisterhood of bookworms and bloggers, freestylers and freelancers, readers, writers, storytellers and of course, for all you knitting novices and know-how’s.

“You should date a girl who reads.
Date a girl who reads. Date a girl who spends her money on books instead of clothes, who has problems with closet space because she has too many books. Date a girl who has a list of books she wants to read, who has had a library card since she was twelve.

Find a girl who reads. You’ll know that she does because she will always have an unread book in her bag. She’s the one lovingly looking over the shelves in the bookstore, the one who quietly cries out when she has found the book she wants. You see that weird chick sniffing the pages of an old book in a secondhand bookshop? That’s the reader. They can never resist smelling the pages, especially when they are yellow and worn.
She’s the girl reading while waiting in that coffee shop down the street. If you take a peek at her mug, the non-dairy creamer is floating on top because she’s kind of engrossed already. Lost in a world of the author’s making. Sit down. She might give you a glare, as most girls who read do not like to be interrupted. Ask her if she likes the book.

Buy her another cup of coffee.

Let her know what you really think of Murakami. See if she got through the first chapter of Fellowship. Understand that if she says she understood James Joyce’s Ulysses she’s just saying that to sound intelligent. Ask her if she loves Alice or she would like to be Alice.

It’s easy to date a girl who reads. Give her books for her birthday, for Christmas, for anniversaries. Give her the gift of words, in poetry and in song. Give her Neruda, Pound, Sexton, Cummings. Let her know that you understand that words are love. Understand that she knows the difference between books and reality but by god, she’s going to try to make her life a little like her favorite book. It will never be your fault if she does.

She has to give it a shot somehow.

Lie to her. If she understands syntax, she will understand your need to lie. Behind words are other things: motivation, value, nuance, dialogue. It will not be the end of the world.

Fail her. Because a girl who reads knows that failure always leads up to the climax. Because girls who read understand that all things must come to end, but that you can always write a sequel. That you can begin again and again and still be the hero. That life is meant to have a villain or two.

Why be frightened of everything that you are not? Girls who read understand that people, like characters, develop. Except in the Twilight series.

If you find a girl who reads, keep her close. When you find her up at 2 AM clutching a book to her chest and weeping, make her a cup of tea and hold her. You may lose her for a couple of hours but she will always come back to you. She’ll talk as if the characters in the book are real, because for a while, they always are.

You will propose on a hot air balloon. Or during a rock concert. Or very casually next time she’s sick. Over Skype.

You will smile so hard you will wonder why your heart hasn’t burst and bled out all over your chest yet. You will write the story of your lives, have kids with strange names and even stranger tastes. She will introduce your children to the Cat in the Hat and Aslan, maybe in the same day. You will walk the winters of your old age together and she will recite Keats under her breath while you shake the snow off your boots.

Date a girl who reads because you deserve it. You deserve a girl who can give you the most colorful life imaginable. If you can only give her monotony, and stale hours and half-baked proposals, then you’re better off alone. If you want the world and the worlds beyond it, date a girl who reads.
....writes, reads & knits!

Or better yet, date a girl who writes.”
Rosemarie Urquico

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Beginnings, Inbetweens & History

Begin at the beginning," the King said, very gravely, "and go on till you come to the end: then stop.
Many moons ago, I took up knitting. I didn’t put it down until I reached my teens. My teenage years were a great time of growth and creative freedom. A place, where I discovered Dave Fanning’s music radio show, boys, teenage disco’s, the challenge of trying to get into over-age disco’s and getting drunk on a single bottle of Ritz. Knitting took a back seat as I started to explore, reach out and set down new boundaries. Ah….the wasted years! Understandably, growth and renewal does create a lot of waste. Fortunately, I returned, with my tail between my legs, head hanging with needles in hand. 
Thankfully, knitting had moved on since I wiled away an evening dreaming of Eddie Vedder, while facing a spotty, skinny bloke named Jim. Knitting had become useful! Memories of the 80’s were of oversized, asymmetrical, hairy mohair jumpers which should have come with a health warning, as you gasped your last breath just trying the damn thing on. Worse still: the awful “Auntie’s” Aran sweater. I have huge grĂ¡ for Aran sweaters, Aran Stitches and hell, the Islands are pretty good too. My aunt, is a talented knitter. However, she was prone to stark tradition when making Aran sweaters, using the greased, ‘wire wool’ effect yarn. The condemned attire touched the nerve endings of every unfortunate Irish child who had a relative who knitted, which covers every Irish child growing up pre-mid-1990’s. The sweaters were scratchy, tight around the neck and it was difficult to move within one.
Getting back to point, knitting has moved on for the best. Not only have yarns maintained their practicality, even seasonality, they are also beautiful.

What to do with all of this beauty that nature (and hand dyers) have endowed us with…. In the words of Vogue Knitting: Take Risks…Love Knitting!