Knitting in Aurora

Without a doubt, I am in a mood. I have been feeling poorly for a couple of days now (I took my methotrexate on Monday, and this week it made me sicker than last. Hope this gets better as I continue…), but I needed to pick up prescriptions from the pharmacy and to run some essential errands (the cats expect to be fed on a regular basis; obviously they are out of control!!), so I dragged myself out of bed and feeling a little dizzy and wobbly I headed out.

Here’s the deal. The Kaiser facility where I pick up my prescriptions is right across the street from the Century 16 theater where a gunman (who will remain unnamed in this post) opened fire in a packed theater of moviegoers watching a popular movie on opening night. It was almost 3 years ago today when I woke up to discover that once again Colorado was in the news for a mass shooting, and once again it was happening in my home town. (Sadly I was a resident of Littleton, Colorado at the time of the Columbine shooting). This time the theater is in the heart of my shopping district, and today as I made my rounds to pick up a library book, buy cat food and made a quick stop at the book store to check (what else) the knitting magazines I was almost always in sight of the theater.

Century 16 Theater
This what the theater looks like today after an extensive remodel. I still haven’t gone there to watch a movie since the shooting.

It is pretty heart-rending if you think about it. The police drove up the lawn and over landscaping behind the theater that night to transport victims to local hospitals. They drove on the street that I used to go to Kaiser in patrol cars carrying as many wounded as they could fit into their cars. It’s hard to not think of this as the shooter’s trial is now wrapping up after 45 days, and it’s impossible to avoid the day-to-day details of the events in the courtroom. As I entered the Barnes and Noble bookstore in the shopping center I wondered if that man had come here to also check magazines.

Knitting Magazines
Here’s the knitting magazines on an upper shelf mixed in with other fiber-arts crafting magazines. I counted 12 knitting magazines.
Gun magazines.
Here are the gun magazines. These slick and menacing productions are located on the lowest shelf where kids can sit and go through them, and I counted 30 magazines. I ignored the obvious hunting and gun collecting ones.

So, I am in a mood. I don’t feel well. I spend a lot of time knitting to cope with my altered future due to some serious illnesses. I don’t want to start a debate about gun control, Second Amendment rights, mental illness, the death penalty, the available of military grade armaments through the internet, or the value of explosive rounds. I don’t want to hear that we need more guns to stay safe and that teachers should be packing in their classrooms. Don’t do it!!

I’m just wondering if the world wouldn’t be a better place if bookstores carried a dozen hard to find gun magazines on their shelves, and there were 30 knitting magazines located at the level of children for them to look through. Wouldn’t it be nice if we all felt safe and dreamed of creating nice cushy scarfs, sweaters and mittens that would be beautiful and useful. That knitting was seen as an important meditative activity as wonderful as yoga, jogging, or any of the other stress-busters out there. That the economic power of knitting and other crafting venues drove a huge industry of creative pursuits valued by a large part of the population.

What does this say about us as a people that this isn’t the case?

Author: Midnight Knitter

I weave, knit and read in Aurora, Colorado where my garden lives. I have 2 sons, a knitting daughter-in-law, a grandson and two exceptionally spoiled kittens. In 2014 I was diagnosed with a serious rare autoimmune disease called systemic sclerosis along with Sjogren's Disease and fibromyalgia.

18 thoughts on “Knitting in Aurora”

    1. I just got back from a dinner out with my son, and wouldn’t you know, I had to drive by that dang theater again thinking about grief, knitting, and nervous about any comments on this post. I checked the blog to find your comment. Thank you. I feel hopeful again. 🙂

  1. It says a lot.
    I agree we should aim to give the next generations some creative outlets and guidance. I’m doing what I can in my own home.

    1. I’ve been thinking about my reply to your comment for a couple of days. Sorry I’ve been slow. I remember reading a book by Freud in college called “Civilization and Its Discontents” in which, if I remember right, Freud argued that as we grow up we surrender freedoms as a cost to becoming socialized into larger communities and organizations. I think that we have many freedoms and that it is appropriate some are surrendered in order for us to exist as rational (and civilized) adults.

      1. I’ve been thinking about you for days, so I came back to reread your post and to click back on this one. I wrote a school paper about gun control nearly forty years ago. Forty years! It seems nothing has changed for the better. I’ll never understand gun culture. One need only look at the grim statistics of this country versus every other civilized country in the world. Mass shootings get the press, but guns are used in suicide, domestic violence, crimes of “passion”, accidental shootings, toddler mishaps, and on and on. I’m so tired of the trite arguments in favor of guns or the need to protect Second Amendment rights. It’s a law that made sense in its time, but I firmly believe it needs to go. Women can now vote, and slavery has been outlawed, so let’s make some changes to gun ownership, too.

        Mostly, I wish I could reach across the miles and give you a warm hug. It’s been a long and trying year. You certainly didn’t need this, too.

      2. Thank you so much. We all need hugs these days.

        I have some thoughts about gun culture based on conversations with gun owners;
        1) there is often an argument about rights based on the 2nd amendment that is, in my opinion, flawed. Their right to have a gun does not supersede my right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness. Also, the right to bare arms is linked to “well regulated militias” which suggests an authorizing/oversight agency linked to public/governmental control.
        2) People often insist that they need guns to “protect themselves” in their homes. Who are they protecting themselves from? Other people with guns or minority/criminal people. Their arguments are like those of slave owners who fear an uprising of oppressed people. When I point that out they usually get really quiet. Pay people a living wage, stop red lining, and absolutely stop oppressing citizens of this nation that came from a different ancestry then our own and a lot of this will go away.

        I tell congressmen in every single letter that I’m absolutely on board with amending the 2nd amendment.

  2. Oh, poor you. Sometimes there are those days full of difficult reminders. How incredibly sad to see all of those gun mags on the bottom shelf, I wonder what the owners would do if you pointed it out to them? You would think they would have more sense after having had a horrific shooting nearby! I have never even seen a mag like that in the UK just the country sports gun mags.
    Have you only recently started the methotrexate? It definitely does get easier. The tireder you are the worse it is. I take mine on a Wednesday and Friday, Saturdays were my worst days. Try to take things as quietly as you can for a couple of days before and after taking the methotrexate (or basically most of the time!!) it makes quite a difference. It honestly does get better and I hardly think about it now unless I have overdone it, then I really know it! I have been on the same dose 17.5mg for a few years now. take care. xx

    1. Well drat! I had a really busy weekend because I felt so GOOD for the first time in a long while, and then took the methotrexate on Monday. This is my first month on the drug and I’m taking 20mg. I hope that I adjust and things get better soon.

      Sharon, I was kind of outraged when I saw the magazines. I hadn’t really looked at them before and didn’t know how many there were. Lots to think about.

  3. Oh I want to have you over for tea and we can wax philosophical about the freedom of speech and other whatnots. So many slippery slopes, where does one start? (Yeah, I know where I would start, like no more guns…but everyone else has rights too…don’t they? Such a tangly web, my oh my.) Maybe afterwards you can give me beginner’s lessons on how you knit those beautiful shawls, and in exchange I’ll bake you my gramma’s shortbread.

    Thanks for this post. It resonated.

  4. Beautifully put! I find it saddening to think of all the people that must have never felt the joy of creating something – whether it be knitting, weaving, baking, writing or music (you get the idea…). They can’t have, surely, otherwise things like this wouldn’t happen as much, right? On the upside, the majority of people wouldn’t think of doing such a thing and in the own way are contributing to making where they live a better place.

    1. Sometimes I think that it’s a matter of living better with less money. You know, making our own meals, growing some of our own food, creating clothing, art, music, (you get the idea…). When I saw those gun magazines I realized that this is about money: lots and lots of money is being made by gun manufacturers. I am thinking that we should not pursue anything and/or everything just because it creates lots of money!!

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