Thursday, October 7, 2010

Womanly skills

One part of me was concentrating on my knitting pattern, while the other was talking to my husband.
He seemed mesmerized by the yarn flying over the knitting needles. "Wow, that looks really complicated", he said at last.
"It is", I replied modestly. The stitches are easy, but the pattern is rather involved. I showed him the pattern- twelve lines, few alike, each with a variety of stitches.
"I could never do that", he admitted.
"Of course. This isn't easy."
"But how do those old women knit such complicated stuff?", he asked.

Why are the traditional "womanly" skills always underestimated?

drabble is a story told in exactly 100 words.


Dyche Designs said...

He, he, he, great post. My husband always marvels when I pick up the knitting needles and I can only do the simple stuff. :0)

Ellie said...

I love this; A language of soul worthy endeavors. I don't know why crafting is dismissed~ Knitting is such a beautiful art form. I want to learn... Great Job~

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

My wife doesn't knit, but I do admire how she can do ten things at once.

Margot Kinberg said...

Rayna - Thanks for this beautiful Drabble. It is so interesting that skills traditionally associated with women are often perceived that way. When I read your story, I thought of a pair of curtains I made for my daughter's bedroom. People who don't do those projects don't realise how complicated they can be; women who've been doing that kind of thing for thousands of years have learned to make it look easy...

Mason Canyon said...

Never underestimate what a woman can do. But having said that, I can barely knit a straight line much less anything as involved as shown in your photo. That takes talent.

Thoughts in Progress

Rayna M. Iyer said...

@ Dyche- if someone looks at it objectively, it is almost magical

@ Ellie- as Margot says, women make it look easy, which is perhaps why it is underestimated

@ Alex- women are champion multi-taskers

@ Margot- curtains are very tricky things. Found that out the hard way. And it is brilliant point you make about women making it look easy

@ Mason- the stitches are simple- it is the pattern that is complicated. But I can never knit something not involved- too boring.

Jules said...

I loved the dialogue of this drabble. We women do roar, don't we? :D
Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

Mary said...

Great Drabble. Dialogue addition makes it.
My mom tried to teach me to knit. In the end I think she was imagining another use for the needles. *wink* Maybe that's why I'm fascinated with mysteries?

Aleta said...

Loved this post! I'm just learning how to knit, so I'm in awe of what you've accomplished - the pattern looks beautiful..

Now that's it's starting to get cooler, I'm going to pick up my knitting needles. There is a sense of peace that it gives me. :)

Clarissa Draper said...

Yes! Exactly. I love it when men tell their wives they don't work, they just stay home with the kids all day. I would like to see them try any of the things we do everyday and do them with the skill we do it.


L. Diane Wolfe said...

You're talented! I can't even darn socks.

N. R. Williams said...

I like your story. I don't knit and found it frustrating as a girl.

Everyone is invited to my blog Halloween party.
N. R. Williams, fantasy author

The Golden Eagle said...

I love knitting!

I don't know why women are so underestimated--it certainly can be frustrating!

Holly Ruggiero said...

I don’t know. I tried my hand at knitting when I was young, but everyone (okay all two people) always insisted I do it as a right-hander. Well, that didn’t work for me so they would get all flustered and I gave up. See how hard us lefties have it. sniff sniff

Jayne said...

Your drabbles are so brilliant. Maybe it is because traditionally women are more modest, ingrained into 'just getting on with it' perhaps.

ViolaNut said...

Knitting and writing! Yayness! :-) Simple things done in complicated ways. I'm sticking to that. ;-)

LTM said...

b/c when people are really expert at things, they make it look easy... :o) And those who would say something is "easy" need to get out there and have more experiences.

You rule, btw. Did you knit that??? Awesomeness~ :o)

Sree said...

I just could not get a grip on knitting.. it is too complicated for me..

It is true how knitters make it seem so easy.

Raquel Byrnes said...

My husband comments on how I can be cooking and chatting with him while following a recipe and watching the kids out of the corner of my eye. He calls it multi-tasking...I call it survival. =)

Edge of Your Seat Romance

Melissa said...

I don't know why womanly skills are always underestimated, they shouldn't be.

Anonymous said...

I used to knit and it wasn't easy. I never did any patterns, though.

Rayna M. Iyer said...

@ Jules- we do.
*high fives*

@ Mary- that could make a great mystery. Hold on, that has already been made into a series of mystery stories, hasn't it?

@ Aleta- thank you. I have been knitting for over 30 years, so have a head start over you. But that pattern is not difficult- you just have to concentrate on the instructions

@ Clarissa- tell me about it :-(
Huge argument Sunday.

@ Diane- to be honest, neither can I!

@ Nancy- thanks. My son wanted to learn, but didn't have the patience to keep at it :-(

@ The Golden Eagle- very frustrating, isn't it? Thanks for dropping by, and I will visit as soon as I can breathe.

@ Holly- my older one is a southpaw too, and when he wanted to learn to knit, I had to teach myself to do it left handed too. Was almost like learning it all over again.

@ Jayne- that must be it. They just don't make a fuss about it.

@ Leanne- now you know why I haven't got to ALot yet.

@ Leigh- true. And yes, before you say easy, you should try it yourself.

@ Sree- practice. There are things I cannot do no matter how hard I try, and others seem to do it so effortlessly

@ Raquel- survival describes it!!!

@ Melissa- not at all. They are as important and difficult as any other

@ Medeia- it gets easier, much easier. All you need is practice

Anonymous said...

Brilliant! I read recently in our newspaper that women ought to get paid more than men because we are so good at multi-tasking and doing complex tasks.

slommler said...

Excellent question...why indeed??
Beautiful knitting!!

dipali said...

haven't knitted in decades now. Your knitting certainly looks impressive:)

Rayna M. Iyer said...

@ Fiona - that is true. At work, whenever there was a scheduling crisis, it was invariably the women who sorted it out. But the men were better at finishing on time. Makes sense in a way.

@ SueAnn- thank you. And I wish I had the answer.

@ Dipali- I keep going off knitting (Bombay and wool don't exactly go together), but my love for the craft keeps catching up with me periodically.


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