Ms. C came over to my house early and we each scarfed up a plate of spaghetti for stamina. Almost as soon as Mike entered the house, we rushed out to the minivan to head east. We arrived over an hour early, but there were plenty of people ahead of us. Checking out the knitwear on the crowd was a fun spectator sport,though and, of course we had our knitting, so the wait went fast.
Here’s the report I wrote as the eyes and ears of the westside author’s group I recently joined:
Stephanie Pearl McPhee may well be the only author out there who makes her living writing knitting humor. Her discussion and booksigning at the East side B&N Monday night generously dished out a lot of laughs and some unexpected insights to the more than 200 knitters/readers present. She didn’t read directly from her new book, Things I Learned from Knitting…Whether I Wanted to or Not, but instead gave a talk which related knitting to studies involving Buddhist monks and theta brainwaves, proved that knitting is not the new yoga, and told us a few things that neuroscientists are just finding out but knitters have known for ages about knitting helping people cope with stress. As a bonus, she threw in a story about walking for way too many miles in way too much cold in northern Ontario.
My favorite moment from her talk:
“This headline reads: Knitting—the Unlikeliest Craze. Now, really, I can imagine: ‘Shaving Possums—The Unlikeliest Craze,’ ‘Eating Your Own Hair—The Unlikeliest…., ‘or ‘Backyard Lard Sculpture…the Unlikeliest Craze.’ But is knitting really the unlikeliest?”
Following the talk and a few questions, Stephanie heroically signed books for almost every member of the audience, stopping to talk, laugh and take pictures for every person. Even though readers waited up to two hours for her signing, she kept giving each person her undivided attention, and people appeared very satisfied, especially when she cracked up the whole line by saying brightly, “I live to serve!”
I couldn’t believe that, after ten o’clock, when I finally reached her and gave her a copy of Knitcircus, she popped up from her chair, saying,"I love zines!" and snapping a picture of me holding the mag. She both joked with my neighbor, Ms. C, right behind me, and complimented her vest, a tour de force of crochet and knit techniques. We all marveled at her strength of body & spirit to be able to do this book tour thing at all, much less with such genuine friendliness and humor.
So, we returned home at an ungodly hour for two moms of young kids, but very happy women. The Yarn Harlot sure delivered the goods.
Here’s a picture of Stephanie taking a pic of us with the sock!