Those of you who follow my Tally_LRR account on Twitter saw me griping yesterday about the fact that I didn’t get into a Seattle craft fair and consequently all my crafting is pointless. This seemingly outrageous jump is largely hormonal, but I bet there are other folks out there who can relate.
My Twitter comment about needing to compete in the crafting world may have been misleading. I craft because I love crafting, just as I sing because I love singing and play video games because I love blowing shit up and giving our old folks and politicians something to get up in arms about, as it were.
I don’t craft because I plan to make a living off it (though a small amount of extra income wouldn’t be unwelcome) or because I think it’ll someday land me on Oprah. I craft because I usually can’t stop myself and wouldn’t want to.
There are times when your inner toddler cries for a little extra attention and praise. You lose enthusiasm and wonder why you do this stuff. Your house is filled to the rafters with scarves and paper beads and silly felt dolls. Evidence of great inspiration litters your floor and is crammed into all your extra closet space, and someone has just told you that you’re not [insert applicable adjective here] enough to be in their craft show, so what in hell will you do with it all, and who else besides you even cares?
At these times you start to question the point of it all. Why bother? Because not only is it taking over your bookshelves and your boyfriend’s sock drawer and every other available space, but you are supposed to be doing other things like figuring out your life, finding a job. Deciding what you want to be. A house cleaner? A store clerk? A dishwasher? The possibilities for a creative writing major are endless!
In the midst of all this, where is the time for creative nonsense that has no purpose and (so it seems to you) interests no one? Also, you should really get out and get more exercise. And stop eating so much cheese. Those chocolate bars haven’t been doing any good either. In light of the fact that you will never land a job that is creatively fulfilling, nor will you manage to be satisfied with your crafting at home, why not give it up, find work in retail, go to the gym with everyone else and maybe be able to afford a decent vacation someday?
That’s this week. You’ll work out once or twice, give up and eat more chocolate bars, watch a goofy movie with your boyfriend and look for work. By next week your emotions will have ricocheted off an entirely different wall of the universe and you’ll be back at it, energetically constructing Mario mobiles and mailing them to your friends so they can find a place to store them.
Of course, none of this helps you with the ever-present fear of becoming that weird old woman at the bus stop, furiously knitting the World’s Ugliest Socks and drooling gently. You’re on your own with that one.