A few years back, my mother and I took a tour of some homes in a very chichi section of Indianapolis known as Meridian-Kessler, where houses on the main drag look something like this:
On the tour this year
After we walked through three houses comparable to that one, I begged off. I couldn’t stand to look one more professionally decorated room. Not one. Walking to our cars, my mother asked, “So what are you taking away from this experience?” “Rich people have too much f****** money,” I advised her darkly, “and their houses piss me off.”
Yes, I really do drop f-bombs in front of my mother. She hates it almost as much as I hated that peek into the lives of my socio-economic betters.
Honestly, though, I would sooner sleep on a college student’s grimy couch than live in a 5,500-square-foot house. It’s not from some noble political conviction that I say this, although it does bother me to think about a family of six sharing a two-bedroom apartment while a family of three redecorates their mansion just to “make it their own.” For the most part, however, my reaction to wealth is much more instinctive than intellectual. I just don’t like big, fancy, expensive stuff. It makes me feel small and alien, as if I do not belong, as if I need to look around for the nearest authority figure for permission to approach the Royal Things, the ones I mustn’t sully with my mundane middle-class dust.
All of this leads me to the trip I made to a yarn store this week to buy some fancy yarn. When I told fellow WonderStrange artist Sarah Trumpp that I was going out to the yarn store, she said, “Ooh. Yarn porn.” I believe I said, “I know, right?” I really didn’t expect to have a Meridian-Kessler experience in the middle of Aisle Four. (Okay, that’s a joke. Yarn stores don’t have aisles. Aisles are for serfs.)
Keep in mind, now, that I usually get my yarn at Michaels, or Hobby Lobby, or on a really racy day, JoAnn’s. These stores do have aisles, and they don’t carry the $20 Madeline Tosh. Their nicest skein of yarn might cost . . . oh . . . $9.00, while a more average price is $4.00 or $5.00
These are my new Supernatural minis.
They were all made with yarn from Hobby Lobby that costs less than $9.
If I had to make them from $9 yarn, no one could afford to buy them except people from Meridian-Kessler.
Yeah, so at any rate, I flipped out a little at the yarn store, and more specifically, I burst into tears. (I told you. Instinctive.) No one had greeted me. No one had offered to help me. I might as well have been invisible – especially when I took my yarn to the cash register, where I waited and waited for the grand privilege of giving someone my money.
When I mentioned on Facebook that the yarn store had done me wrong, my friend Louise asked what yarn I’d purchased. After I told her the brand, she said, “Yarn stores are kinda like record stores. [You just bought] the Justin Bieber record in that store, my friend.”
Ugh. I mean, Louise is hilarious, and I wish we could hang out in real life and cook delicious vegetarian food and make things out of yarn while we watch cool TV shows, but UGH!
Ugh about snobs. Ugh about crying in the parking lot of a yarn store. And ugh about my Justin Bieber yarn, which cost me $12 but feels exactly the same to me as the Lily Sugar ‘n Cream that I get at the local grocery store for a dollar and change.
So hey. Know what?
I renounce good yarn. I do it proudly. I don’t make wearable things like sweaters, and that means I really don’t need to worry about the elegant softness of wool that comes from sheep who sip champagne while graduate students read them Baudelaire.
Eff. Good. Yarn.
There. I feel better now. Power to the people and all that.
Did I mention how cute my new Supernatural minis are?
You can find them here. And thanks for reading.