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mother of josh, richard, and mutt. lover of books, yarn, and the quiet places. spinner, knitter, kayaker, survivor, vandweller, warrior.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

looking, seeing and becoming real

Mutt and i look at each other alot, but he looks at me the most. i can't tell you how many times i look over from the drivers seat, and see him gazing at me. nothing makes me "present" much more than this. it's like a little electric shock goes through me. there is nothing like opening my eyes in the morning, and seeing his dark brown eyes staring patiently down at me. 

i have vague recollections of reading somewhere about pack, and dominance, and staring.  i don't remember exactly, but i think it said that a dog staring you down is trying to dominate. that you should stare back at them till they look away. i don't know about this, maybe some of the more dog-savvy can weigh in. all i know, is that Mutt and i spend an awful lot of time looking at each other, and i don't have any sense of "winning" or even of competition.  all i know is that we see each other.

i wrote a blog about one of my experiences, about seeing someone and being seen by them. take a moment today, not just to look at someone, but to see them:


Judith said...

Kate, staring *can* be a form of asserting dominance, or a prelude to aggression, but it depends on the context. If there is tension between you and a dog, and if the dog may become aggressive, **don't** stare at the dog, especially if you are not familiar with the dog. Staring in that context is a hostile act and can escalate the situation. The polite behavior in dog body language is to look away and only look at the dog from the corners of your eye. Do not approach the dog directly, either. Moving away slowly, or approaching in a wide curve while facing sideways to the dog, and only looking obliquely, are calming signals. But with a dog you know, where there is no tension, I think staring is not a form of dominance or aggression. It's a form of contact.

Ron said...

I've seen Mutt staring at you. That's the look of love, girl. Pure, unconditional, unabashed, unabashed, unashamed love.

manywheels said...

Hi Katie.....I sure agree with Judith and and Mutt are so close and in tune....I think he is looking at you with dog love....or devotion....and watching for what you want him to do.
Dina does the same to me, endlessly and at times so totally alert. I know they are picking up tons of things we are not even aware of. I remember taking acid and my dog at the time would stare hard at me and climb on my lap to stare at my eyes and smell was eery....Without me doing anything abnormal he knew I was "different"... maybe 'aura', vibes?...I don't know.

veganprimate (Marcy) said...

I love having pets. My cats and I look at each other all the time, too.

I just found out that you aren't a member of the vandwellers group anymore, which explains why you never responded to a post I addressed to you. If you don't mind, I'll repost my question here.

Question for hoboknitter and others who craft

The problem I fear that I will be facing (other than finding a place to store a
couple large rubbermaid containers of yarn and fiber, plus three fleeces) is
that when knitting, crocheting, and spinning I am going to end up with
something. And that something will take up space.

I love knitting, and I don't want to stop, but I only need so many scarves,
hats, mittens, etc.

Any suggestions?

I thought of doing charity knitting, but I prefer to work with natural fibers,
and most charities want acrylic b/c it's easy care. And of course, when I spin,
I spin natural fibers.

I also thought of just setting up a table alongside the road, like people do
when they sell produce, but instead, I would be selling my handknit stuff. I'm
not expecting to make a living. I would probably just price the items to cover
the cost of the yarn...then my hobby would be free. By the way, do people who
sell on the side of the road have business licenses and/or permission from the
city/county? I've also thought about selling via Etsy.

I also thought of just passing along any previous scarves, hats, etc. to the
Goodwill whenever I knit myself a new one. Only problem with that is that
people wouldn't necessarily know the stuff was wool and might wash it in a
machine and inadvertently felt the stuff.

So, what do y'all think I should do to avoid becoming overrun with handmade


So, do you have any words of wisdom?

hoboknitter said...

hey you guys! thanks for the comments. i love him to pieces, as you know. i am so fortunate to have found him.

@marcy: yeah, i'm on sabbatical from vandwellers. been hanging out here:

to answer your questions as best i can...

i have sold hats on the roadside, mostly on the northern california coast. in mendocino county in the ft. bragg area, it's an artsy sort of community and i never had trouble. i was never questioned, so i don't know the laws. i know in some places you do need a license or resale permit. the hassle with roadside selling on the move is knowing the laws wherever you are. i once sold a hat while sitting in a rest stop knitting, and once in a walmart parking lot. just had a basket of hats near my feet or on the picnic table and people inquired. a girl on vandwellers once said she does it and if someone asks, she just says they are for a "$x.xx" donation, thereby avoiding problems.

i think etsy is the best, because with a computer and a paypal account, you can ship from anywhere. i keep it simple and use priority mail with access to free envelopes.....all i need is a marker and some tissue paper. i've shipped hats from all over the place.

i got a paypal debit card, which is free, and no fees. the second someone completes an etsy transaction with paypal, i can use the debit card to fill my gas tank or make a purchase anywhere. the paypal debit is better protected than my bank debit card. i love it. my boys have them and we can transfer money so easily.

don't be afraid to price to make a profit. especially if it's handspun natural fibers, cause they'll sell. if not, then have a sale :-)

another thought would be to use them for barter at street fairs or indie type shops. i have done that occasionally. but i most like making a little spending money....

i think there is a recent thread over at cheaprvliving about this. you can read there without joining, but joining is good too!

hope this helps!


Anonymous said...

Been a while since I checked in with you. Getting itchy feet and want to GO.Marcy, there are many of us who would love to have something warm for winter walks. 1oleman(Ed)

DeAnna said...

Dogs don't believe in dominance. It's a purely human construct. Wolves don't have hierarchies in the way that we used to think they did (what they actually have is family units, with all of the complexity that you would expect from a family group). Dogs are not wolves, and are even further removed from the sense of hierarchy that we used to think wolves had.

For certain, sometimes dogs are aggressive (note: aggressive is not the same thing as dominant), and staring can be a signal they give meaning you should watch your step. If you ignore the staring, or continue to act in a way the dog finds threatening, you might be asking for trouble.

I would not describe what Mutt does as staring. Staring is typified by "hard" eyes and a stiff body, usually with lips set a little forward or puckered forward at the edges. What Mutt does is "gaze adoringly", which is pretty much the opposite of staring.