Thursday, May 21, 2009

We need to talk

There’s an expression in southern Appalachia that goes, “it’s time for a come-to-Jesus meeting,” and it means that somebody has had enough. No more waiting for the target to come to their senses, and it has been allowed to continue for too long already. Such a meeting is one of those in which something will decidedly end today and the new thing begins. It’s a very final thing, with no room for ‘or else.’ These are called all the time by parents, employers, and intervention groups.

Friends, I’m calling a Come-to-Ravelry meeting, as it’s high time you’ve done so. Are you drowning in the multitudes of message boards and egroups? Are there soooo many passwords and login names inside you, turning your heart black? If the Net Almighty were to come today, I said today, if the Net Almighty were to come today, would you know your one true website? What would your final answer beeeee??? I say, what would beeeee your salvation? Friends, I want to shine a light onto your lost way! I say, friends, let me testify. I say onto you, friends, Ravelry is the way.

Okay, silliness aside, I resisted it too at first. The last thing I needed was another damned egroup to keep up with, to go with my 57 other ones I’ve done joined. Ravelry, however, is not just another egroup. It’s an aggregator of egroups, patterns, sources, people, shops, events, and information. It’s an aggregator and a very functional database. Folks, join Ravelry, and you can ditch all those other egroups, as they’d only be redundant, after getting on board the Ravelry train. Do you have a bujillion websites bookmarked for patterns? Shops too? Delete all them bookmarks, because you can track these things through Ravelry.

Not only are your friends’ current projects and yarn stash on there, but they’re linked! This means that if I have a pretty yarn, but no idea what to do with it, I can click on the yarn choice and see all the things other people are doing with it, for inspiration. Click on a pattern, and see the results of all the others who’ve done the same one. The Ravelry groups you can join have their message boards on the one site. Not just knitting-related groups either, oh no. I found WoW knitters, knitters who are also fans of Charlaine Harris’ books, and my fave LYS has a message board there.

And blogs? I can click on my Ravelry friends list, then click on the friends’ blogs tab, and all them blog entries are gathered together in one neat spot for me.

Guys, Ravelry fetches everything we knitters want from the web. It connects us like no web ever has before. And it eliminates the need for so much site hopping that we can’t possibly keep up with it all. Ravelry keeps up with it for us.

  • Get on it.
  • Link up your projects and stash.
  • Search through the groups and join the ones that interest you.
  • Find your friends on there, and they are on there (without you if you don’t join ‘em), and add them to your profile.

Start window shopping for all them free patterns, many of them from published books and the author just wanted to share. Oh yeah, famous knitters are on Ravelry, rubbing elbows with us mortals.

Anymore, when you ask about a pattern or some information on an event, folks are going to answer you with a variation of, “It’s on Ravelry.” Because that’s where the announcements now live, baby.

Is it any wonder it was knitters who reinvented the ‘net into something that is truly a functioning, connecting, woven thing?

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