still livid

December 8, 2010

i got home today and found that sarah had left me an interesting comment on my fuel for the fire post:

Just wanted to chime in to say that while I agree the gross generalizations are incorrect and possibly offensive, when read in addition to the stories included in the book (a woman getting upset that the fancy cabled and colorwork sweater was going to goodwill, and that the simple dressy sweater was used to rake leaves), there is a bit of “tongue-in-cheek” humor to go along with it. However, that is a difficult thing to get across in writing.

Unfortunately, for whatever reason, the beautiful and wonderfully produced patterns in this book get overshadowed by the commentary and writing around it, that seem to upset some people.

I found the little anecdotes of men using cashmere hats to wipe up cat vomit humorous, and I plan on knitting more than a few of the patterns, because I like that I can choose my yarn, choose my gauge, and all the math and guesswork is done for me. And I choose not to get offended by generalizations, because really, everyone does it…all the time…and if that’s what got someone’s pattern published so I can use it, then so what.

i personally found no humor in any of the anecdotes.
i didn’t find any humor in men being portrayed as oblivious, unfeeling, neanderthals.

at first i thought,
“maybe it’s a gay thing?”
maybe it’s because i know so many queer folk who have suffered because they were unable to fit into these stereotypes that makes me extra sensitive.

maybe things like rampant anorexia and gay kids offing themselves left an right has nothing at all to do with being bombarded by messages about gender.

maybe i’m overreacting,
and men really can’t change
and women must do the changing in order to be happy with them
and with their knitting.

maybe sarah is right and everyone generalizes so there’s no point in getting worked up even when those generalizations cause me and people i care about pain.

she is right that the patterns were good.
but the book is marketed as a guide for women to understand men so they can tailor their knitting to them.

there had to be other,
more effective ways to market those patterns.

this is my blog,
my little corner of the internet.
if i’m offended, i’m probably going to write about it.
and while i still encourage people to ask their lys to remove that book from their shelves, it’s just my opinion.

thanks for sharing yours with me sarah.
you have an interesting worldview.

edit: i took down sarah’s email on the advice of my friend, the editor of the world. *sigh* maturity sucks.