Thursday, January 15, 2009


When I knit something, I often, sad to say, imagine people ooohing and ahhing over it. Confess. The thought has crossed your mind as you knit. You know it has.

Once done, I usually manage to array myself conspicuously and wait for the compliments to come rolling "spontaneously" in. If spontaneity fails, I've been known to clear my throat loudly. If that fails, I tend to become even more obnoxious, she-who-will-not-be-ignored.

Of course, my friends are used to it and can generally be coerced into admiration. It's the praise of complete strangers that I crave.

Mind you, the Mardi Gras purse is a big-ass purse. With my elbow crooked, the purse hangs to just above my ankle. It is hard to miss. I carried my Mardi Gras purse the entire length of the Twelfth Night Parade. No compliments. I hoisted it conspicuously about at public gatherings. Nothing.

In D.C., my purse has been admired in an Ethiopian restaurant in D.C. In the dim light, a woman called me over and in a heavily accented voice said, "I am liking your purse. Do you make them to sell?"

After today, though, I may need to rethink my need for the admiration of strangers. At IKEA, a woman in the lobby complimented my Mardi Gras purse. Just as I slipped into the restroom, I said, "Why thank you. I made it." Moments later, I heard her voice from the stall next to mine, "So how do you keep it from stretching out?"

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