Saturday, February 26, 2011

New follower, good morning!

We have a friend staying – I forgot to warn you that posts would be scanty or late or non-existent. Next week my sister and her husband are coming and the situation will continue. I doubt if I'll be here tomorrow.

Knitlass, Alexander and his family are coming over for the match tomorrow – it will be his 51st birthday. One never imagines, when starting out in life, that one will one day have a son of 51. Rachel has already passed that milestone, but somehow it seems more definitive this time.

They hope to call in here. I have got them some of Mr Crombie’s Six Nations sausages, which he sells every year around this time: pork from Scotland, leeks from Wales, Guinness from Ireland, herbs from England, onions from France, tomatoes from Italy. They’re not the best of his sausages. It’s the thought that counts.

Gretchen, yes, it was Barbara Venishnick’s name I was groping for. Bless you. I tried Googling again, knowing her name, and couldn’t find an item with “knitting designer sudden death” in it, so no wonder Google couldn’t help when I didn’t know the name.

A propos the question of attitudes shifting slowly with the decades (yesterday’s post, with comments): we watched “Some Like It Hot” the other evening, funny as ever. But I was struck with the fact that part of the running joke which inspires the final scene rests on the unquestioned assumption that marriage can only be contracted between a man and a woman. Whatever one’s point of view on the issue, that can’t be taken for granted any more.

I was very interested in your absolutely self-authenticating memory, Anonymous, of white and “colored” drinking fountains in Detroit. I don’t remember overt segregation like that there, just in Dallas. You’re right about the word, too: “colored”, of course. I remembered that “black” didn’t come in until later, but “Negro” didn’t sound quite right when I wrote it yesterday. There was a whole separate “colored” waiting room in the Dallas railway station.

I got on fine with RtB last night. Garter stitch is not only ideal for exhaustion, it’s also pretty good for knitting while catching up with an old friend


  1. Janet in Alabama12:32 PM

    Hello Helen -
    I, too, grew up in Detroit (8 Mile & Woodward). To my knowledge, there were NEVER any signs posted as to 'color'. I do remember such things being known, rather than printed out. For example, at our high school, everyone knew which stairwells were for 'whites' and which were for 'blacks' although there was no signage to that effect. To me, it was a shock when I moved South and saw the remnants of such signage. We Northerners showed the same racism, just not out in the open. Sad things to think about.
    Please do note that I do not know how to 'follow' you, but that your intelligent words and knitting inspire me every day.

  2. I think I'm the new 'follower'!!

    I too am an 'old' knitter but I knit almost exclusively for my ten grandchildren and one great grandson!!

    My hubby and I have always wished we could live in Scotland but the kids keep us here...

  3. My grandmother told me stories about the horror of being Mexican in Texas during segregation. Mexicans were considered "colored" too so she remembered having to ride in the back of the bus, etc. That is why they moved to California. She hated Texas.

  4. That's a big match tomorrow. You and I will be on opposite sides of the field or stands or however it's organized. I never did get to Murrayfield, much less Lansdowne Road. Usually it was cold and I was just as happy to watch on TV. Hello to your sister and husband - I miss them! I wish they would get back to blogging.

  5. Julianne5:14 PM

    My grandmother grew up in Detroit and graduated from high school in 1937. Her high school was integrated and the majority of the black students indicated in the yearbook that they were going on the college.

  6. Kerry3:24 AM

    As late as the 1950s in some country towns here in Australia, our indigenous Aborigines sat in a segregated area at the movies. And in the 60s or 70s there was a referendum which recognised Aborigines as citizens of Australia.