Tuesday, July 18, 2006

It figures. The first day in days that I've been moved to post and there's a scheduled outage. We'll see if this goes through - I'm not posting pictures (big surprise there) so it may.

Spinning Guild

I've not gotten to guild in months; counter scheduling by the tweens has been rough on my outings. I forget when I don't go just exactly how energized I come home from this monthly outings. I wasn't even particularly interested in this month's topic - I have done KA and EE dyeing and I probably will do KA and EE dyeing again but I'm not interested right now. There weren't that many people there, probably only 20 or so, which given that the guild has over 100, usually averages 30-40 at a meeting and has 60-70 on really special occasions, made this a small meeting. It was hot (no AC) and humid (my silk didn't spin after the first 5 minutes) and my conversations didn't particularly sparkle (gee it's hot, my silk isn't spinning well, is yours?) K was bored silly aside from mastering the basic crochet stitch.

And yet, for all the seeming inanity of any particular meeting, there is a power in getting together in guild with other people who share a passion. I always come home from guild ready to spin, ready to look through my stash, ready to remember what inspired me about any given purchase and what my plans are for it. There is an inspiration to be found in simply being in a room with people to whom I don't need to explain myself. They 'get' why I spin, why I play with fiber, why I knit or crochet, no explanations needed.

I do enjoy spinning in public, teaching people one at a time, about fiber, about spindles, about how it used to be. My children are vaguely proud, vaguely embarassed by me (they are a tween and a teen*, after all); my constant spinning or knitting or crocheting wherever I am, the attention it inevitably draws. I don't do it to draw attention, I do it because (as mentioned previously) it gives me patience and gives me the ability to pay attention.

The guild here is large, as guild go, over 100 spinners who have plunked down their $12 to belong to this guild, with a separate weaver's guild (many of whom are spinners as well) and yet another fiber arts guild with weavers and spinners. There is some cross-membership between the guilds, but only some, and there must be still other spinners unaffiliated with any guild. So, perhaps 350 or 400 people in the Greater Metropolitan Area spin? Out of 1.03 million people - that's .039 percent. My chances of running into another spinner on any given day are pretty slim.

So, I find it energizing to go to guild. The chance to discuss nuances of spinning, rather than repeating, once again, yes, it's a spindle, people used to use them all the time, no, the sheep wasn't red, I dyed it before I started spinning. The internet has been my gateway to spinning, my lifeline that led me into a new and wonderful place, but the guild has been the battery pack that gives it new oomph.

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