June 1, 2005

Whoa there...

I had today's entry all ready to go when I noticed that Carrie had made a comment on yesterday's entry that needed addressing.
There's no point in pretending that this won't cause some reaction, so I'm just going to meet it head on. We are all just going to deal with this like adults with respect for each other. (This will likely be hardest for me, since I'm not very adult on a good day, but let's give it a try.)

Yesterday I wrote about the quilt code. Several people wrote to tell me that they felt it was folklore/legend/inaccurate.

Emmajane felt badly that this was being discounted and replied to those people.
Now, whatever happened after this, it is important to know that what Emma meant was that she has the perspective of someone who has visited the cairn and spoken to it's creator...she did not mean to imply any race based perspective, and I don't believe that she did.
She said she had a different perspective, and she does. We all do.

In response to this, Carrie clearly got her buttons pushed and wrote a strong reply. Firstly, I'm not going to ban her. I've had a few rules on this blog, and though I've never had to use them, since I really enjoy healthy debate, maybe now is a good time to let you all know what they are, right quick before this gets any bigger.

1. This blog is my virtual living room. Welcome. Please act as you would in my home.
2. The internet is made up of real people with real feelings that need respecting.
3. Everyone has a right to an opinion, even if it differs from mine. As long as you state your opinion without impinging on the right of another person to hold an opposite view and are respectful of them as people, you are fine.
This concept needs to be really clear, so I'll give you an example.
Fine: I believe that my politics/ cats/ my straight needles are better than other politics/ hamsters/ circular needles and they are all I will ever, ever use or believe in.
Not Fine: I believe that my politics/ my cat /my straight needles are better than your politics/ your hamster/ your circular needles and if you don't think so too, then you are stupid.

Back to the problem at hand. Carrie and Emmajane are illustrating for us a main drawback of the internet. The lack of interruption. If Carrie and Emmajane had begun this conversation on the phone or in my real living room, Carrie would have only got the first sentence out before Emmajane would have had a chance to say
"Holy crap, that's *SO* not what I meant to imply!" and Carrie would have said,
"Oh, oh really? *That's* what you meant? Oh, my....nevermind."

Since they are both reasonable, intelligent people who seem to be able to communicate well enough to get through something like this, then they would have had a talk, possibly a debate about the quilt code and the evidence in both directions and agreed to disagree. Instead, well. We could be keeping score here.

Emmajane would have lost a point for not being perfectly clear (although really....I don't know how I would feel about my score most days) and Carrie would have lost a point for reacting strongly without more information and clarification about Emmajane and her views.

That said, I do think that if Carrie re-reads Emmajane's comment that she'll realize that she may have picked up a little more steam than she intended and gotten off on a really good rip that might have been over the line. (We all know that I am exactly the sort of person this happens to, so I am sympathetic). Since these sorts of misunderstandings are common on the internet, and all it really takes to reel them back in is fresh perspective, I will hope that it ends here.

Finally, about the Quilt Code (who knew it was such a loaded topic?) all I will say is the following.

There are those who believe that the quilt code was not real. There are those who believe that it was. Since the continuation of humanity does not actually hinge on discovering the truth about this, I have made a simple choice. I chose, during my visit to the Black History Cairn in Owen Sound to respect the right of the Black Community there to tell their story the way that they believe it to be true. You may tell your history the way you believe it to be true as well.

I have a flight to New York tomorrow to begin the next leg of the bookbookbooktour and today will be spent getting ready, if by "getting ready" you understand that I mean "buying groceries that I will not eat" "cleaning a bathroom that I will not use" and "doing laundry I will not wear". I have this idea that if I leave Team Harlot in good shape, when I come back the damage won't be so astonishingly complete bad. At the best of times the house looks like it's been ransacked by an army of drunken Roman Warriors, (after the pillaging, but before the burning) but when I come back it looks like I should contemplate an insurance claim.

Tomorrow's flight takes me to New York for BEA, then Rosie's Yarn Cellar in Philadelphia on Sunday from 2-4 and Knit-Wits Inc. in Greensburg PA on Monday from 5-7.
(Details...as always, are on the tour page, and also as always I am excited and flipped out. Is anybody free Saturday evening in Philadelphia? I am.... )

More about wool tomorrow, Play nice.

Posted by Stephanie at June 1, 2005 2:00 PM