I took my sorry ass all the way down to Tacoma last night to hear Stephanie Pearl-McPhee speak as part of the Madrona Fiber Arts Retreat. If only I had known I would have totally registered and gone to the retreat, but what are you going to do. There were two speakers, Diane Formoso and everyone's favorite Harlot. Diane spoke about charity and making a difference on the local level in your own community and Stephanie spoke about the same on the international level, most specifically through Doctors Without Borders (MSF). I had read her Solstice plea to include someone on the other side of the world into our families and donate to MSF. Being the often ambivalent and flat out lazy person that I am I never got around to donating. As a result I never felt like I was truly part of the incredible knitting community out there. It seemed to me that everyone else had donated and I was an interloper rejoicing in what knitters could do without actually taking part. This is often an unspoken mantra of my life. Anyway, last night I finally donated some money and become a full-fledged member of the the knitting community that is changing the world. I gotta say it's way better over on this side of the line.
Stephanie also spoke of her donation drive during the tsunami aftermath. She had asked knitters to think about wants versus needs, and donate the wants money to MSF. This got me to thinking about wants versus needs and really rejoicing in what we do have. I spent a very peaceful and elated drive home thinking about lucky I really am. I was wearing the warm wool coat I wear every day, driving my own car that I can afford to put gas in and sitting next to the products of my hobby, which I am lucky enough to have time to take part in. My job may be excruciatingly boring, but the fact is that I can fill all the needs in my life and still have time and money and energy to fill almost all of my wants, the reasonable ones anyway. I try and remind myself of this every day.
ps- Stephanie is damn funny. And a very eloquent speaker who got her point across with just the right amount of humor and actual content. She is the type of person I want to be and I want to be my friends.