I knit weird. I didn’t even realize it until I’d been knitting for about a decade. I was trying to learn a new stitch by watching you-tube videos and I realized that the lead-up stitches didn’t match the way I knit. There are two main knitting styles: English and Continental. I knew I didn’t knit English style, which is the most common in the US, but I always figured that I knit Continental.
I knew that I knit a little strange, because I knit ambidextrously, but I always figured that I knit Continental style, just backwards with one hand and forward with the other. Now that I knew I didn’t knit English or Continental, it explained why I was having so much trouble figuring out that stitch. (And why I tend to have problems with patterns in general.)
I watched more videos and learned how to knit English and Continental, but I decided that I like knitting my way best. It means that I have to think through a new pattern instead of simply following the given directions, but I had to do that anyway, to translate it for knitting with both hands.
A year after I learned that I didn’t knit Continental, I was again browsing knitting blogs and videos and I found learned something new. I’m not the only one that knits this way! There’s even a name for it! “Combination Knitting”. Or “Eastern Uncrossed” (most places strongly claim that there is a difference, but I haven’t found it). In fact, there are a lot of other ways of knitting besides the two I’d always heard about.
The great thing about having the proper name for something is that now you can Google it. I read all about my newly discovered label, and even bought a book about Combination knitting.
In practical terms, once the excitement had worn off, knowing the name hasn’t changed my knitting much. I now have a few more resources and I know the keywords to search if I get stuck. I understand a little better how to translate patterns so that I can use them, and how to translate my patterns so others can use them. If you look at the patterns I post, you will see that they tend to be more “knit in stockinet” or “decrease” rather than specific stitches.
I read a lot of fanfiction. A little over a year ago, I was reading a lot of asexual-Sherlock/John Watson fics. I was also reading a lot of Cabin Pressure fics (Martin/Arthur).
I imagined a conversation between Martin and a demi-sexual Arthur. (If you know Cabin Pressure, think: the conversation about how planes fly.) (If you don’t know Cabin Pressure, go listen to it – it is a British radio comedy and it is hilarious.) I was imagining them talking about sexual attraction.
In one episode of the show, they meet an actress from one of Arthur’s favorite movies, and she turns out to be a jerk. I imagine Martin worried about Arthur after this, and the conversation starts from there.
Arthur isn’t really upset, and Martin is confused. Arthur is like: “I liked the character, not the actress, how could I like the actress, I didn’t even know her?” Martin is trying to explain attraction, and getting all flustered and frustrated. Arthur is being all cheery and “Yeah, but not really.” And “People say that, but you can’t really like someone if you don’t know them.”
And I got stuck, because I had plenty of words to put into Arthur’s mouth, but none for Martin. I stopped, and thought: “Huh. Am I asexual?”
I did some googling, read some stuff, downloaded “The Invisible Orientation” from Amazon. There were a lot of things I read that made me think “That. That’s me.” I finally decided that the label suits me. I now identify as asexual.
I bought a necklace in ace colors, I made myself an ace pride hat, and I got an ace ring I like to wear. And I go about my life. Nothing much has changed outside of my head. It’s just that now I have the words to describe how I feel and I know I’m not the only one.
Overall, I ‘m still more excited about “Combination Knitting” than “Asexuality”.
After all, labels don’t define you, they just help with keyword searches.