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Archive for November 16th, 2008

You can’t buy passion.

Sunday, November 16th, 2008

Sometimes people complain to me that they have “too many” dreams about things to knit. Every yarn seems to inspire them, every book or magazine gives them more possibilities. They have so many ideas they can’t keep up.

My response is that you can not buy passion. Whatever you love, whatever it is that makes you dream, this is a wonderful thing. Some people have no passions, and I find this sad. The idea that someone could be bored on time off, does not compute to me. I’ve been bored when paid to do something on the job, but being bored at home has never happened to me.

annasecondpair.jpgSome of us have so many passions, we can never follow them all. I think this is an abundance of riches in the life-enthusiasm department. I think it’s a good thing.

So… if you find yourself with a passion, I say grab it and go! Take the ride where it leads you, and enjoy the moment. Yes, we can buy too much stuff with any passion, and that needs to be in balance with our other financial details and available storage space, but the passion itself is not wrong. It is very right. Passion is not necessarily equal to addiction, and I think sometimes people think they are the same. Passion at its purest is just a fire in the belly for living, and I see it as very good.

And for the record, yarn is cheaper as an entertainment purchase than many hobbies. Look at photography, skiing, ukulele collecting, motorcycle riding, most sports requiring equipment, anything requiring travel. Not only that, if you count knitting as entertainment, the yarn/supply cost per hour is minimal. And you get a finished object when you are done, as a bonus.

Knitting is a lot cheaper per hour than going to movies, and nobody seems to think that movie watching is too expensive. And you never get a scarf or pair of socks when you finish watching a movie or three. So knitters, shed the guilt and seize the passion!

A Passion for Electrical Fixture History

The other day I found myself on a blog I’d never seen before, Bangor Bungalow, where they are restoring an old bungalow (I had one myself, mine was 1923). Somehow I clicked on a link which took me to a page about the history of electrical lighting fixtures.

Let me tell you… the person writing about these fixtures is REALLY into it. Total passion about which fixture is made with a lip or a square edge or whatever. Whether a fixture is really this brand or a knock off. There are lots of photos, lots of links to supporting website documentation, really clear information obviously collected over many years of a burning interest/passion over this topic.

The writer talks in particular on this page about Harvey Hubbell who invented the pull-chain switched light socket. Wow! How cool is that? Apparently his first patent for this is 1896. He has many other patents, and his company issued catalogs up to the mid-1960s. Wow.

The writer talks and talks and documents and goes on. It’s the coolest thing. Because, my friends, you can’t buy passion. And the writer burns with the interest of a historian or a convert. Except clearly the conversion was many years ago, much time to collect real information on this subject and take the time to share it with the world. It’s really cool. even though I’m not so into light fixtures and the history of lighting, I’m really into the fact that this person is.

It’s a bit geeky, a bit history, a bit artful. Maybe some of you will be interested in a peek.

Note added: After Jean Marie left me a comment, I went looking to see if the Hubbell company was still in operation. There apparently has been more than a hundred years with Mr. Hubbell’s name on electrical products, and the company is now international in scope. There is a history page on the Hubbell, Incorporated website.

The photo? Passion for knitting socks. My 14-year-old knitter, A., finished her second pair. She did them without help from me. She did ask how to bind off in seed stitch, but she designed the cuff on her own and did the feet and heels without a single question. That’s passion, my friends.