public displays of knitting

I’ve become that lady. You know, the lady who sits on the subway and knits. Yup. It was really only a matter of time. I mean, what better way to occupy my commute to work than by being productive too! It’s the best of all worlds.

That being said, I’ll never be a normal subway rider again. I’ve been jaded by my multitasking. I find myself getting really irritated whenever I ride the subway and there isn’t a spot to sit and knit. “That’s a whole 25 minutes of great knitting time that I am cheated of! Do you know how many rows I can get done in 25 minutes????” I find myself thinking. It’s bad. When I get ready for a night on the town I look back and forth from my tiny purse to my knitting, rationalizing whether or not I would be able to fit my knitting inside said tiny purse and God forbid something happens to my knitting while I’m at the bar but damn I could get so much done on the 35 minute subway ride there. I may have a problem.

The other part of knitting out in the open are the looks. When I was college, taking theatre classes, we did an exercise where everyone would choose someone else in the class to look at until they could feel it. It’s an odd thing but it works. We’ve all been there. You’re going about a task when all of a sudden you get the feeling that someone’s watching you. Chances are there is someone watching you. I’ve never felt this feeling so much as when I’m knitting on the subway and to such a point that I look up and almost always make eye contact with the person looking. It’s a little crazy. And every now and then one of them will be brave enough to tap my on the shoulder and ask me what I’m working on. They don’t know a thing about me and have never seen me before but because I’m a gal knitting on the subway that must mean I’m safe to chat with. I love it.

The consolation in all of this is that I know I’m not alone. Every now and then I’ll see others like me in the same car and one time I even shared a seat with a crocheter. It felt like we had our own designated spot on the train. Sorry folks, hand crafters only on this seat. More proof of this was pointed out to me by way of a friend who found an article about a man who was questioned about his knitting by the police. His blog, madmanknitting, is all about his journey as a man knitter (or as I like to put it, a Mitter) and the cute bears that he makes and sells to get by. His story is pretty inspiring so I encourage you to read a few of his posts.

I’m sure all this public knitting makes me a bit of a granny but i guess thats’s okay with me. I love doing it and so far anyone that I interact with seems to enjoy it to. It’s made me think about what I can do to share my joy with others. But there will be more on that to come. 


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