Because I have shared the tough couple of weeks I had at work, I thought I would share some positive moments.

Today I had the kind of day that reminds me why I am a social worker. I got a warm, heartfelt hug from a woman who has been through some tough times and appreciated the support I gave. I got a thank you from a guy who told me that talking to me made him feel better. And I got a thank you from another woman who is facing some anxiety producing life events and I told her to call anytime and I would let her vent and get rid of some anxiety.

I don't doubt that most of the folks I work with appreciate the work I do. But often they are so caught up in their lives and their illnesses that they can't see much else. Today made up for all the crap that I have been subjected to by the administrators. Today, I felt like I made a difference. That's what it's all about.
It surely isn't about the money!
As promised, here is a photo of the Wildflowers Shawl center piece. I love the colors. They are deep and true. Can you see how well the new ball of yarn (top) matches the original (bottom)? The top has a bit more of the blue but since I started it when I had a repeat to go at the top and it will be on the edging down the sides, I think it will blend beautifully. Speaking of edging, I have done 2 repeats of the pattern and I am knitting it separately and will be sewing it on at the end. I gave up after several tries to figure out the instructions on how to knit the edging and attach it at the same time. I'm sure it's not difficult but I couldn't seem to get it and I was wasting the yarn because it was becoming all splitty. For my own sanity, this was the better solution. Has anyone ever blocked 100 % bamboo yarn? Does it block like wool? I have looked it up online and can't find any definitive answers. I am intending to try blocking it lightly. I don't think it needs a severe stretching out, just a gentle pull. The bamboo is slick and slightly shiny and very soft. It is so different from wool. The knitted fabric has so much drape to it, it's amazing.
And finally, this came in the mail yesterday. It's the Artwalk Sock Yarn for September. It's based on a Kandinsky painting. The colors are strong and beautiful. It's destined for some Christmas knitting. It will make some stunning socks.
Pk and I were discussing the book list and decided that we didn't necessarily think those books all deserved to be called classic (and there were some repeats) and we were unhappy that some that we consider "must reads" are not on the list. So, we decided to compile our own list of books that we think everyone should read. Although, I do think that is a little presumptuous. (I'll share it when we've had some time to think about it.) While we agree that Shakespeare belongs on the list, not necessarily everything he wrote is classic. And what about Isaac Asimov? The man wrote over 800 books and some of them are classics in their genre. I'm sure we all have our favorite classics, both old and new.
What makes a book a classic? What makes it good enough to be on your list?
I would be interested in hearing which books you consider classic and why. Happy thinking!

Comments

Olivia said…
Hard question, Donna Lee! Books and their impact on people are so very personal. I guess the ones that deserve to be called classics are the ones that stand the test of time and continue to touch people's lives, outside of their original context. Some require a bit of work to understand that context though. This would mean there is really no such thing as an 'instant classic'. Then again many books that could become classics don't get enough attention and fade away. There has to be some hype early on for people to continue coming back to the book. It is not only the book itself but how it appears in the world and the impact it has at that time - not only the quality of the writing and story itself.

Asimov's Foundation series would be on my list. Must go back and read thos again!
Bezzie said…
Beautiful shawl!!

I'll be honest, I don't like the mainstream books, so I tend to shy from the typical "classics" (well unless forced to read them in school or I read them before I realize they're considered "classic" by masses). I'll admit, sometimes I'll read the "classics" just to see what I've been missing out on, and I've been disappointed. Kind of like going to see a movie that got great reviews, but just isn't your thing.

That list I posted yesterday? Many on there I've avoided because I've heard too much about them!!!
Sheepish Annie said…
Hmmm...classic books? I have a certain affection for the horror and sci/fi genre, so many of my faves are things by King, Lovecraft, Koontz and the like.

I'm so glad you got some of the appreciation today. It is always wonderful to be reminded that you make a difference.
Bells said…
Those days when you feel like you make a difference are so important. That's great to hear.

Loving the shawl. Just lovely. I did a knitted on edge for my pi shawl and it took some figuring out and I nearly gave up.

I think Olivia summed up the classic issue really well. It's time that does it.
Galad said…
I think time and relevance define a classic. Classics may be dated be their time period but their themes are universal.

Glad to hear that you had a feel good day. You know you are making a difference with your clients (most days anyway) but it is still nice to hear it.
The Yarn Queen said…
It's always great to have your hard work come back and say thanks.
As far a bamboo. The shrug I knit stretched. So I agree with your assement block lightly.
The shawl is beautiful.
Rose Red said…
Glad you have some good work stories too.

The shawl looks great and I think the colour match is pretty good.

Olivia has said what I would've said, and I'd add that a classic is a book you can read and re-read and always get something new out of it.
amy said…
I agree with Rose Red, I think a classic is a book that you can stand to reread. But just because a book is termed a "classic" doesn't mean everyone is going to enjoy it. Too much guilt when it comes to classic books, don't you think?

Glad you got some positive feedback from clients yesterday. Of course you know your impact, but of course it's nice to hear it, too. Nobody likes a thankless job.
Julie said…
Somehow I'd missed the fact that you are a social worker. Hats off to you. That's a rough job, and severely misunderstood and underrated by those who've never needed one. (But I'm betting you know this.) So glad your charges appreciate you. A good social worker is worth her weight in gold. Or yarn. Depending on what she likes.
Em said…
Oooh, classics. What a tricky word. I think a lot of classics tend to be deemed so because somebody somewhere with a PhD thought it was important literature. And there's a difference in important literature and a classic book. I always feel like a classic should be a book that doesn't just make you feel, it makes you think, whether you realize it at the time or not. I've read several of the books on the list, and there are some I will try to read, for the sake of being better-read. But really, I read almost anything in front of me. I am a voracious reader, almost indiscriminate. I simply love a good, well-written story. Or a completely absurd one (psychic interior decorators, anyone?) and there are precious few books I haven't like, much less have hated. War and Peace, I could hardly slog through for class. Animal Farm makes me want to eat more meat. And Lord of the Flies just makes me want to eat somebody's face. Other than those (violently) hated books, I have liked pretty much everything I've read.
DPUTiger said…
To me, I'd have to say that a classic is a book that I want on my permanent shelf and will read again. Yes, I have a lot of "kid books" on there, like The Black Stallion series, but TKAM, Pride & Prejudice, can't think what else, but that's my definition.

Yes, there are hundreds of great pieces of literature that I've never read. And I"m sure I'll enjoy many of them. I just don't make time to read like I do other things :( Glad you had a great day at work. Days like that are worth their weight in gold!
Roxie said…
Ohh, the shawl is Glorious!! How rich and elegant it looks. I think you just give it a good pressing and let it drape. Doesn't it feel sumptuous?

The wheel of life turns, and the good you have done turns up to thank you. You deserve the hugs, my dear!

What is a classic book? It's one that tells you true things about life and shows you something new every time you read it. Most of the "Classics" aren't suitable for teens because they don't have enough life experience to get it.

Writing, if you do it right, is sort of like making a container. It's ok just as it is, but if it's well done, people can fill it with their own lives and make it useful. Classics are beautiful AND utilitarian!
Amy Lane said…
AUUUUGHHHH! Darling, I love you but I am NOT thinking that hard on a Friday night. A classic is a book with longevity and a timeless resonance inside the human heart. That's all I've got for you--most of the 'classics' I've read are hella old--I could give that list a run for its money, but some of the books I'm not sure if I've read or read a zillion book reports on.

Anything by Guy Gavriel Kay is a classic--he's not on the listQ

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