Friday, August 20, 2010

Common Courtesy, or Lack Thereof

If you've been reading my blog very long, you probably know that I'm a knitter, and that I often knit in public. So, I'm long accustomed to people saying the following:
  1. "My grandmother used to crochet." In my head I reply, "This is knitting, not crochet." Out loud I say, "Mine, too. Isn't it great how elaborate some of their patterns were?"
  2. "I'd never have the patience for that." In my head I reply, "I don't knit because I'm patient, I'm patient because I knit." Out loud I say, "Oh, I thought the same thing, but knitting is a good patience-building exercise."
  3. "Sure wish I had the time for that." In my head I reply, "We're both sitting here waiting for our appointment. I'm being productive, and you're being annoying." Out loud I say, "It really helps pass time while you're waiting like we are now."

And so's amazing what people will say, trying to be friendly. I ran across a lady this morning, though, who came treacherously close to crossing the line of common courtesy. She started by asking what I was knitting. I told her that I was knitting a pair of socks. This led to her telling me that her grandmother used to knit really beautiful things, socks, hats, scarves. Now mind you, it wasn't that she said that her grandmother used to knit that bugged me. It was the snide inference that my knitting didn't come up to her grandmother's quality.

To be fair, maybe it doesn't, but that's not the kind of thing that you say to a total stranger in a waiting room, right? I just smiled and continued to knit, saying that knitting is a good thing to do in waiting rooms to help pass the time. I further commented that I knit while watching television. This resulted in another snide look and a comment that SHE didn't watch television, that you could find HER doing just about anything except watching television.

To quote Steve Martin, "Well, excuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuse me!" Sheesh. Okay, maybe there are people who DON'T watch television, but why should they feel the need to make the rest of us feel like dimbulbs because we enjoy watching tv??

After that, I'll admit that I felt the need to jerk her down a notch or two and told her that last year I was dealing with a back problem and spent most of the time between February and November in a recliner. I added that if it hadn't been for having knitting and television to help distract me, I don't know what I would have done. That slowed her up a little; luckily they called me back to have my blood test run at that time.

When I finished and was leaving, that same lady was still sitting in the waiting area and said, "Boy that was quick. It takes me longer. They have to draw about 8 tubes of blood for me." What I WANTED to say was, "Okay, this isn't a contest, but if it was, YOU WIN. Cripes." What I actually said, smiling, was "That's a shame. Hope it goes well for you."

Like I said before, I don't knit because I'm patient, I'm patient because I knit.

I have to admit, though, it still amazes me that people will be snooty to a woman holding pointy sticks. :-)

1 comment:

barbie crafts said...

Yes, some people...even misfortune becomes a contest! I have finally also decided to just let them win is easier!