I had never really thought my roommate could be a C.H.O.K.E. (Cultural Humiliation of Knitters Everywhere) operative. My roommate would, for the most part, ignore my knitting. Occasionally she would ask a question, seemingly interested in what I was doing. I had never heard a negative word about knitting out of her mouth...until last night.
I'm having a bit of trouble writing down exactly what she said. Not because I don't remember it, but because I remember it all too well. And it's shocking. You might want to have a seat.
Here is the following selection of our conversation gone awry:
Roommate: I'm going to go have a cigarette and then go straight to bed.
Me: (In reference to smoking) Shame, shame.
Roommate: Well, at least I'm not doing anything as boring and antisocial as knitting.
Let's just have a pause, shall we? Because I think we all need a moment to gasp and quite a few moments to understand the full remark. I am not surprised that a CHOKE operative called knitting "boring" and "antisocial." These are their normal tactics. But they have, with my roommate's help, reached a new low. She actually compared knitting to smoking and reached the conclusion that smoking is a better activity. (Time for another pause. Remember to breathe.)
Knitting is a less attractive activity than smoking? For a second, we'll put aside that the facts that knitting is more productive, knitting isn't chemically addictive, knitting doesn't leave a terrible smell in your hair or clothes, and knitting isn't banned in all Washington, DC bars and restaurants. Instead, I'm going to focus on the fact that I've yet to hear of the negative health affects of knitting. No one has ever coughed up phlegm because of knitting. No one has ever gotten cancer from knitting. No one has ever DIED from knitting.
And while I told my roommate that I have more friends because I knit, that I enjoy being productive, that it's relaxing, and moreover that it won't eventually cause my death...She ignored all of this and accused me of spending my time "making sweaters and socks."
Which personally, I'm not sure that's a bad thing. And I would definitely be happier knitting until I'm eighty, instead of dying at sixty or younger of lung cancer.
But maybe that's just me.