It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to know that while the professional chef industry may be male dominated, crochet is definitely a girl thing – but does it have to be?
I was pleasantly surprised two weeks ago when I attended my first ever yarn group meet-up that a gent was at the end of the table, knitting away. I believe he was sitting next to his wife, but I am too new to the group to be making assumptions.
I was equally as thrilled a few days ago when my son asked me if I could show him crochet so he could craft at the yarn group too. I didn’t think anything of it as I got him started and showed him the half double crochet. (he chose camo yarn… no surprise there).
In the 30 years I have been crocheting, I must admit I have never noticed guys taking up the craft until the last few years, which I personally think is a great thing. Perhaps I didn’t notice because I really don’t view it as a “girls only club.” I may sound like an uneducated oaf to some when I say this: I think that each individual can offer a different perspective to various tasks, and I think that a person’s gender can influence his or her perspective. So having “guy eyes” and “girl eyes” on a project could possibly lend way to more creativity than we already have.
*waits for hate mail on the topic*
Anywhoozles – with all of that said, there is still a negative connotate when it comes to males who crochet or knit. Many times these guys are looked on as weaker or effeminate. To this, I say balogna-sauce! Ya know who else would say balogna-sauce?
Who is Mike Rivera? Well, the sports fan would identify him as a 6′ 2″, 252 pound lineman for the Miami Dolphins who landed himself on the inactive list after getting injured.
However, if you ask the students at Hillcrest Elementary School, they would say he was their crochet instructor ‘Michael.’
Yup – tough man is a hooker too.
According to an article posted on ESPN, Rivera is using the NFL lockout time to crochet more. He learned to crochet when he took a trip to Guatamala, where a former classmate was teaching. Rivera is quoted as saying “people say ‘crochet, isn’t that something old ladies do?’ … Football is masculine and testosterone driven, but I think it shows you can do other things and be well rounded.”
People fight stereotypes every day, including myself; however, Rivera’s openness and willingness to teach children to crochet is tearing down the walls associated to crochet being ‘only for old ladies.’
According to the ESPN article, Rivera does not watch television or play video games. He spends an adequate amount of time volunteering in his community. He volunteers at the Boys and Girls Club and has recently starting teaching crochet. He is even considering opening a shop to sell his crocheted hats as a side project. From the article, it appears that Rivera is taking heed in knowing that he will not be able to play football his entire life. He wants to become a teacher when his football career ends –
Now, the ESPN article doesn’t say if he wants to teach crochet or teach in the traditional sense of the word – but either way, if crochet needed an ambassador to show males it is ok to crochet, I think Mr. Rivera is a good first round pick – or hook, as the case may be.