Friday, August 26, 2011

actual Miss Manners letter

Below is a letter and answer that actually appeared on the Miss Manners website. I love her comment about us being armed...
Note that I am one of those people who will knit in movies or at concerts or the like. I use soft wood needles, so they don't click, and always a simple stockinette in the round (sweater body or sock) - no pattern, no turning of the work, nothing that will distract others with unnecessary movement. I don't attend church or any organized religious gathering, so that doesn't apply to me, but I'm thinking that if I did, I would probably knit. I'd have issues worshipping a deity that didn't approve of knitting and multitasking...


Over the years I have noticed people knitting in public and have had no particular problem with it. However, I am a bit put off by those who knit in church or at an event such as a recital or concert.

Is it acceptable to knit at a church, synagogue or other religious service? And what about a concert or recital? I recently attended a piano and violin recital in a small venue where someone was knitting in the third row. Surely it was evident to the performers. And if such knitting is not appropriate, how should the knitters be approached, or prevented?

GENTLE READER: Please do not -- repeat, not -- make a hostile approach to knitters. Have you not noticed that they are armed with long, pointy sticks?

Of all the multitaskers who could annoy you, Miss Manners would not have guessed that knitters would top the list. There is a centuries-long history of ladies quietly doing needlework while remaining alert to what was going on around them.

But perhaps your complaint is that they are not quiet. If the clicking of needles is what bothers you, you could appeal to the authorities at church or concert hall that as they ban texting, it is only fair to ban activities that create similar noise. And if they don’t already ban texting, you might start by asking that they do before going after those comparatively unobtrusive knitters.


KnitTech said...

Amen, Sister!

TracyKM said...

I saw this on another blog too, and loved it.
As a performer, I would much rather see someone in the audience knitting, then texting or playing a game on their phone. By keeping the hands occupied, the part of the brain that tends to wander is kept calm, allowing other parts of the brain to focus. Most knitters are pretty respectful and wouldn't bring a multicoloured, two-chart, giant afghan to work in public! Even though I'm a musician, I have a hard time sitting still during other groups' concerts, so a bit of knitting helps!

Knit and Purl Mama said...

That's funny!!! I also quietly knit in public. Maybe they were using aluminum needles? Those click.