24 October 2005

Inching Out

I think I just signed up for a scarf exchange... a real, live, knitting exchange...

I've been hesitant to really try and publicize my blog thanks to that darn Chronicle article about not blogging while on the job market. Yes, I see the logic in not putting your blog on your CV, especially if you're blogging about your fetish for doing nasty things with pickled pigs feet or ridiculing your co-workers for their idiot ways. But why should I be ashamed of the fact that I like to knit when I'm not working on my dissertation or my classes?

When I started teaching, I received the following advice: "You can't be a good teacher if you're not being a good person." Although Peter Elbow's philosophy of comp has completely vanished from my head, this has stuck with me, primarily because it rings true. I get so frustrated when academia expects people to cut off their life outside their research. Yes, I'm passionate about the Victorian novel, but there's more to life than Dickens. *shrieking heard from English departments around the world*

So, I'm going to try sticking my nose into a few little knitting groups, try this exchange, maybe even try the Samus knitalong since I have the yarn now. There is something thrilling when you meet someone who knows what you do and shares your interest. A few weeks ago when I did my first fiber fest and knitting roadtrip, I enjoyed talking with the girls who were also thinking of knitting Rogue and who were into the Knitty patterns. I know that I enjoy sewing primarily because in my family it's a group activity. We're all making the same quilts or going shopping together, even doing the actual sewing together when we're all in the same state.

Now comes the fun part of thinking what scarf pattern I'd like to try...

I also received teaching advice to "embrace your inner nerd." This one also sticks. Probably because I'm a big nerd.

The real message was about letting your students see you get excited about Wordsworth's poetry if that's what trips your trigger because your excitement will spread to them (hopefully). It works. I won't tell you how dorky I look when teaching Matthew Arnold's "Dover Beach," but let's just say there was some inner nerd on display that day.

Guess it's time to embrace my inner knitting nerd...

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