I joined my Chicago knitting group over a year go, under the guise that I was interested in knitting. In reality, I just wanted to make more friends and reconnect with the ringleader, who I had lost touch with for over a year. Now I'm neck-deep in a knitting ring full of women I have come to call an extension of my "inner circle" - until it's hazing week. We're an inviting group, welcoming and encouraging people to join us, and after you've shown that you're willing to pledge our group full-time, we beat you savagely in a burlap bag with knitting needles and crochet hooks. Honestly, it only hurts for the first minute. You go numb after.
But once you wake up, you're in the group and there's no leaving. You share things at knitting that you don't always share with family or other circles of friends and no topic is considered taboo or in poor taste. I've watched a woman pump in front of me, heard stories of liquor in "lady areas" and seen a "romantic toy" named Gigi, which is perplexing and not at all arousing. This week there was a particularly eye-opening story about alternate meanings for the words "muffin" and "cupcake," which made me now look different at red velvet cupcakes. By day, we're co-workers and friends, but once we step into the hostess' apartment, it's time to put on our cloaks, bring out the needles and candles and purl to our hearts content...sometimes with beer.
Sure it sounds fun, knitting with friends, ordering dinner and enjoying glass of wine, but the seedy underbelly of it would shock you. The taunting and teasing (usually from the more-reserved members) is brutal, almost as much as having the class bully sit on your chest and threaten to dribble spit on your forehead. I tweeted last night about my private torture and it was the responses I received from tweet-land that prompted this post. It's enough to make the toughest and meanest people (like me) crack because it's taunting in unison from multiple members. So what if I can't always remember what the difference is between "medium" and "medium rare" meat, it changes from place to place! See the torture forced upon me?
My soul feels cleansed sharing this with you all. I fear now I'll have to carry one of my knitting needles with me for safety but it's a risk worth taking. On a positive note, my legwarmers are coming along nicely though and I'm almost finished with the first one. I need to make progress on them so I can rock those this fall.
In all reality - I love my knitting group. They're some of my good friends and we're a tight-knit group (no pun intended). And yes, I'm saying this out of fear of retaliation. Really though, we've expanded to non-knitting activities, like brunch, and two of us are planning an upcoming trip to Iowa for a Big 10 game. It's fun, unless I'm being emotionally abused.
So am I the only one involved in a group like this? Feel free to share, there's no judgement here.