More Tell than Show

Today I knew that I had little of fibre interest to share with you – this mainly due to the ongoing clutter in my space preventing me from setting up any photographs. I planned instead to share just one photograph of something non-fibrous that nevertheless delights me. I bought it the last time that I ventured to town and I love it.


(Engaging Rolf-mode:) Can you tell what it is yet?

A collapsible funnel! Now I no longer have to spill vinegar all over the place when filling the table bottle.Best of all, when not in use it takes up no room at all in the kitchen.

But really, I see this as having applications when using beads in my workroom… also, it is squidgy and fun and a really good alternative to popping bubble wrap…


Unexpectedly, I find myself with a Show and Tell idea that involves much telling. Today I was friended on Ravelry by a total stranger. No idea who she is or why she picked me but while I was learning a little more about her, I explored one of her other Ravelry friends — and I found AlarmingFemale.

I liked the cut of AlarmingFemale’s jib. Anybody who describes their self thus: Feminist gay-defending intellectual race-traitor progressive… is OK by me! On the side of the angels, I would say.

There was a blog link, so I investigated further. I liked what I found and I shall be subscribing in my feed reader.

Now, I envy this woman her voice. I was struck by her strapline “not keeping my opinions to myself.” It struck a chord with me.

Readers with long memory will perhaps recall a time when I too had a voice and was willing to expose myself, my feelings and my opinions. I allowed that to be taken away from me at a time when I was very vulnerable. Several times over the years I have been under attack for doing nothing other than being myself. So many people appear to believe that if an individual voices an opinion or belief they are: (a) necessarily wrong if it disagrees with their own or  (b) not entitled to hold that differing belief in the first place; and (c) that the voiced belief/opinion/experience undermines in some way their own value/status/whatever (I don’t really fathom this, so it is difficult to frame and state the thought)

I have been aware lately that the blog has been suffering and the notion has been percolating that it is this lack of voice that is the problem. I chose to delete so many ideas and experiences and history (er, mystory), and to focus on innocuous blether and nonsense… like knitting! but now I feel that this blog is no longer my home, as it was in years past. It is a part of me, a public face – scrubbed and made-up and presented in soft-focus – but by no means the whole of me – and not even always honest. It is a neutral nonentity – small wonder that it has become so quiet. I miss the visitors from far and wide, who stayed to chat and enjoyed the window on my world. I feel that my day is less without that interaction.

I live in an enclosed small community. I have borne the wrath of others in the past, for doing no more than saying how very much I love my life here. Imagine what could happen if I spoke my mind more often, secure in my own place and forgetting to moderate my words for the hard-of-understanding. Good heavens… suppose I said something that could reasonably be construed negatively! Imagine how vulnerable I have felt knowing that  neighbours and ex-partners sit reading this, not revealing their presence, looking for some sentiment that they can fasten onto and berate – spying, in fact. A mean word, I know, and a strong one – but it is a mean activity. Mean, petty and spiteful – to sneak in here and read my personal thoughts and then to take them away and use them against me. Understandable then, why I chose to raise the drawbridge.

I am not saying that it is happening now. It may be. It may not. I have no idea and I do not want to know. It certainly has been the case in the past, both here and elsewhere. Thankfully, not often.

Now, you can bet your bottom dollar that somebody somewhere will read the foregoing, interpret it completely incorrectly, and  go off half-cocked. Let us be clear: most people are lovely – especially in my little part of  the world. Most readers are no trouble at all. Most people respect the space.  But the bastards… they really are out there, lurking – and they get their pleasures in the most unexpected of ways.

Let us forget about them.

What I have always enjoyed about the Internet and the blog community is that it brings us into contact with joyous, open-minded and generous people too.

I am ready to rejoin that world, I think.

Ready at least for an experiment.

The vocal chords are flexing and there is every hope that there may one day be real content. Or I may scuttle back under my stone. Who can tell?  I do know that I am tired and vexed with being hobbled. I don’t want much – I just want to be me.

AlarmingFemale has a featured page on her blog, where she reveals 200+ things about herself.

How about I give something like that a bash for myself – just as a starting point, to find out if the nerves of steel have returned yet, or if it is simply a matter of indigestion from last night’s cheese on toast.

Here’s the rules

  1. it is a stream of consciousness – no planning, no editing
  2. random is the name of the game
  3. it’s my head above the parapet, not yours
  4. it’s ok to be truthful, honest… and vulnerable
  5. nobody gets to tell me that I am wrong – if you don’t like what you see, bugger off and read somebody more your style. OK? I am not telling anybody how to live their life, so keep your neb out of mine.
  6. non-bullying comments are fine – better than fine, it is good to know that you are there – whoever you are
  7. not possible to do a long list today, but I can make a start
  8. any Tuesday when nothing more interesting can be found for Show and Tell or Try It posts, I shall add to the list
  9. I’ll gather them into one document – for past partners and future blackmailers and bullies to peruse at their leisure 😉

It’s scary.

A few things about me, some you know and some you may not

  1. I’m a Brit, born in Yorkshire
  2. I choose to live in Scotland, in Orkney
  3. My dad is a Yorkshire Viking-type, he is tall blue-eyed and fair,  and I have Viking Blood ( at least that’s what they told me at the blood donor centre in Leeds)
  4. My mother is half Scots/ half Welsh – an ill-tempered little Celt
  5. I am a fraternal twin, the elder by 10 minutes and was born prematurely and underweight
  6. I consider myself to be a survivor
  7. If the notion of Class still exists and applies and is useful to anybody at all, then I am decidedly Working Class. Chips taste best straight from the newspaper and the evening meal, at 5pm, is Tea.
  8. I was a “Coronation babe” and was presented with a set of cutlery to celebrate this fact. I do not remember anything about this event, but I have seen the cutlery… wish I knew where it was now!
  9. Do not ask me to do Favourites or Top Ten lists – my experiences, tastes and moods change as I move through life and what is true today will not be true tomorrow. I will not be pinned down
  10. I have a low tolerance threshold for chain emails and so-called Internet humour. Please do not add me to your circulation lists, I will only junk your mail without reading it.
  11. At times, I may appear uncompromising…
  12. … or humourless…
  13. … I am neither
  14. Come the Revolution, spammers will be first up against the wall. They, and Mrs Thatcher.
  15. Black coffee – freshly ground, strong, no sugar, piping hot… with a second cup on the way
  16. I enjoy knitting
  17. I trust my gut more than my head
  18. My abiding principle is “If it feels wrong, don’t do it, because it probably is
  19. Not everything that feels good is always right or proper
  20. I have had my tonsils removed twice
  21. Coke not Pepsi, but water is preferable to either
  22. Cremation not burial, and no funeral service or ash-scattering nonsense, please
  23. Cats AND Dogs

That is more than enough to be going on with.

Here’s an idea: How about you leave just one more or less interesting fact about yourself in the comments? It would be a good way to say hello and to let us know that you are here.

Oh, and just as a point of interest. This post has sat here all day, waiting for me to either delete it or push the Publish button. A large part of me is convinced that I shall regret going naked into the world once more. One of the things about myself that I am most proud of is that I am quite good at doing the things that scare me,  so I think I had better settle for the Publish-and-be-damned option. See you on the other side.




  1. August 23, 2011

    You go girl!

    I vowed never to knit lace.

    I now knit lace! 🙂

  2. August 23, 2011

    I vowed never to knit lace.

    I now knit lace!

    Never say never
    How’s things down south?

  3. August 23, 2011

    I’m glad you went for the Publish button. I, too, have the occasional debate with myself about what and how much to share publicly. It’s a challenging balance, and I’m still not sure I have it right. It’s good to know that I’m not the only one who frets about it.

    As for a random fact…I always feel like I SHOULD be one of those travelers who is all ‘oh, let’s take the subway and get a real feel for the place,’ but in real life I’m much happier if I have a car and can sort out transportation on my own. Shameful I know, but it’s just how I’m wired.

    • August 24, 2011

      Now, there is another one for the list: Train or boat not Car or Plane. I like to travel slowly and to see the world about me, and much prefer the train to the motorway. This is entirely weird however as I am something of a control freak and do not normally like giving up my freedom of control and ability to change plans at whim.

      Thank you for the Random Fact, I love it when readers get into the spirit of the game!

  4. August 24, 2011

    I love your list. Don’t change a thing! Who cares what *they* think, anyway?

    • August 24, 2011

      There are times when it is difficult not to. Normally I am a “who cares” kind of person… broad shoulders etc. (though no thick skin) but I have had a couple of delicate periods in my history that both coincided with some unwarranted attacks from persons who should know better – and should certainly at least have more taste and class… I am still in recovery from the last one and find the real me embattled with the modified me that I have been cultivating for the last few years.

      This all sounds awfully cryptic and dramatic – it is not, really. It is just difficult to express the truth of things while oppressed by the fear of unreasonable behaviours should clarity be deployed instead 🙂

      Anyway, I am starting to dislike and lose respect for the modified me. I’m throwing off the chains. Maybe only one by one, to see how it goes, but I am coming back.

      I refuse to live my life tip-toeing on egg shells – “a life half-lived…”

  5. Sarah Goodman
    August 24, 2011

    Inspiring, brave, honest .

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