Over the weekend, I saw a documentary about a group of surfers in Australia, Bra Boys. Not the typical movie I would go see on a Sunday, but I’m glad I saw it. Besides the fact that I could watch people surfing all day and never get tired of it, it was a pretty interesting story, along the lines of Dogtown and Z Boys, only with a happier “ending” for all involved. I would definitely recommend it, but be warned, there are a couple of extremely graphic scenes with injured surfers. If blood makes you squeamish, you may not want to check this out. (Personally, I just hid behind my hands and may have accidentally said “EW!” out loud a few times.) Although I will say, those scenes are counterbalanced by the fact that the gorgeous Koby Abberton is shirtless for a good portion of the film. Seriously, could not get enough of ogling, erm, I mean, watching him. Shirtless. For almost every interview. And surfing. And hot. And I may have mentioned that he was shirtless. Ahem. I digress….
Seeing this got me thinking about a common attitude that the uninitiated have with any “hobby” or interest that they just “don’t get,” and that is “why do people get so worked up/ involved/ consumed with such-and-such hobby?” Well, that’s because for most of us, it’s not just a hobby. It’s an obsession. It’s an escape. It’s a form of meditation. It’s something that channels our creative energies. It’s a tradition that was passed down from generation to generation, something we learned from our mothers and grandmothers. It’s making something beautiful. It’s a common denominator for people of all walks of life. We’ve built a whole community around it, online and in real life. Like surfing, it unites, brings people together, and gives them a viable outlet.
By nature, I am a solitary sort, but knitting has brought me out of my hermetic shell and closer to other people. When I went to my first knit night in Long Island City so many years ago (has it been 5 years? more? my time flies!), I went at Matt’s suggestion, maybe because he was tired of going to yarn shops and fiber festivals with me (he’s not, for the record), and it was a big step for me to even do this and reach out to other people who had similar interests. I met the most awesome group of strong, opinionated, intelligent, vibrant women full of life and humor. I can say it now that it doesn’t hurt to admit it, but I miss those women and their conversations, opinions, crazy jokes, and amazing spirit. Most of them became good friends, and I think about them here and there even though I am horrible about keeping in touch. They brought out the best in me, and I’m so grateful for that. Likewise, I am so happy that I have met another group of women here in Cambridge who are also witty, hilarious, smart, and so much fun to hang out with. And that’s not even to mention the amazing people I have met through blogging who I have become friends with in real life. I could go on and on about these awesome people, but there’s a more basic point I am trying to make. I would have never met any of them if it weren’t for this silly “hobby.” So while I may not be putting a firecracker in anyone’s butt crack (apparently, this is one of the many ways surfers show their appreciation for their friends – who knew?), there is some fabulous camaraderie going on here, and I am lucky to have it and be a part of it.
Anyhoo, we’re off to dance camp again this year. Matt teaches capoeira there, and I’m supposed to be his assistant, kinda sorta. Actually, whereas Matt goes to his capoeira classes three times a week, I sit on my butt and stuff softies or knit or read or surf the internet (hah). Suffice it to say, I have a hard time keeping up without getting winded. Last year, I only assisted for the first class so that he could instruct the kids on a few different kicks. By the second class, he had them sparring with each other, which was a huge relief to me. I do teach some of the kids who are interested how to make softies in the evenings after dinner and help chaperone little walks and firefly catching sessions and such. I really enjoy it and am so looking forward to going that I’m already packed. (We leave in a couple of days.) Besides the essentials and all that, I’m bringing a book, some knitting, and my nano-nanoo onto which I just downloaded the latest Ladytron. (<- Warning: link has sound.) So yay! Last year was a blast, and hopefully this year will be good times for all again. See you all in a week or so. Hope you are all having a lovely summer!