Sunday, September 10, 2017

Sometimes Titles Are Difficult So This Is The One Where I Talk About What I Watch When I Knit

Knitters knit and crocheters crochet everywhere. Anywhere. It's one benefit to the hobby. Unlike, say, dressmaking or quilting or furniture building or piano playing, I can knit pretty much anywhere. But this means I mainly just carry a knitting project around a lot and then sit on my couch and knit while I watch television. I'm not even ashamed.

I mean, should I probably get more exercise? Yep, but then that cuts into knitting time and I need to knit more and design more and become a world famous knitting designer. Or maybe I should skip the knitting for a while, exercise a whole bunch, eat healthy and then, when I'm really "hot", take lots of pictures of me knitting and become famous that way.

Sitting on the couch sounds easier.

Besides, if I didn't sit on the couch, knit and watch television, I wouldn't be able to have conversations with strangers about television shows. It's such an easy way to find common ground.

In 2017, though, it's more than just television. There are so many different options for consuming media at home that it can be difficult to narrow it down. I'm one of those darned cord-cutters the cable industry hates but, fortunately for them, I'm still addicted to the internet; that's how I get all the media.

Let's do a run-down of what I'm watching when I knit (and sometimes when I'm just laying on the couch like a bump on a log. And I'd love to get suggestions from you, too! Don't be shy.

Netflix

Pretty much the holy grail for media in a cord-cutter's home, Netflix used to fuel the bulk of my entertainment time. Lately, I've found myself watching less and less, mainly tuning in when I just want some background noise.

It's a bit on the nose, but I definitely recommend "Slow TV: National Knitting Evening." It's perfect for just background noise and gentle entertainment. I mean, the most exciting thing is... It's not exciting. I'll be perfectly honest. And because I don't speak Norwegian, I miss a lot -- sometimes it's difficult to read subtitles and knit -- but I don't even care. I still love it.
For sheer ridiculousness and jokes I'll always laugh at, I will always turn to "The IT Crowd." I'm not even going to try to explain it. Just do it.
And one more favorite that I've watched multiple times, and will watch again and again: "Better Off Ted." The cast is fantastic, the situations ridiculous, the dialogue snappy. The most disappointing thing is finding out the show was cancelled too early and there aren't enough episodes.

Amazon Prime

I absolutely cannot recommend more the series "BrainDead" on Amazon Prime. If you're trying to make sense of today's really confusing political climate in a way that is absolutely nonsensical, watch this series. It follows Laurel, her pals Gustave and Rochelle, and her philandering brother/senator, as they investigate space bugs. Space bugs! Bonus, every episode begins with an amazing recap song like this one:

YouTube

Don't fight it anymore; join the YouTube revolution. It's not just stupid cat videos and kids badly lip syncing to terrible pop songs. I've discovered so many cool things but mainly I love to watch people create. It's so inspiring to just be "around" creative people and feed off of their positive energy. It makes me want to learn and try new things. On the knitting side of things, I'd suggest Grocery Girls Knit, kristyglassknits and the new podcast Dogstar Knits.

The Grocery Girls are funny and prolific knitters and really encourage other knitters. They've got a second show on the Craftsy channel called "Off Our Needles". Kristy Glass has some really great interviews with people in the knitting/yarn crafting world (typically, I loved her "Man"ch series - interviews in March with men who knit). Dogstar Knits is a husband and wife duo that has a really chill aesthetic. Dogstar Knits only has four episodes so far but fingers crossed for a lot more.

It's really interesting to see how people approach the knitting lifestyle from many different angles--as crafters, as interviewers and as designers and dyers. These are the kinds of videos I like to watch to make me a better member of the knitting community.

But on the non-knitting side of YouTube, don't be afraid to deep dive for off the wall things, like The Great Pottery Throw Down, which is, yes, a pottery version of the Great British Bake Off! But with clay! It's amazing!

TED

When I want to feel intellectual and take a surface look into deep subjects, I'll flip over to TED.com and start watching any of their many videos. Some of the videos I've found inspiring: