Sunday, July 08, 2007

I was sad to read on Bonnie's blog that she's having a hard time with some people in her life. I can't understand the need to put others down, or how some people think they have a right to say hurtful things, often to one's face. I'm sure I've caused hurt through sheer stupidity and lack of tact, but never deliberately.

When we were in Sydney a group of us started recounting comments and stories that had a negative cast, and while we all laughed and sympathised, somehow these are the things that stick in your mind.
Here is a selection of our stories ....The picture above is of a raffle quilt that I made for a friends fundraising campaign. I was told it was a useless idea and it would be a flop, but it made $3ooo. Many people admired it but I always remember one woman staring at it with a look of dislike and saying " Why am I buying a ticket, I don't know what I'd do with THAT if I won it". I felt like tearing up the ticket stub to make sure she didn't!

Years ago I made a quilt to sell at a fundraising day for my church. It sold within hours, and I was feeling very chuffed that I'd contributed $3oo with my efforts. A woman walked past, stared at the "Sold" ticket and said "Some people have more money than sense".

On being told Keryn had written a book on quilting a friend said 'But you'd have to have talent for that.'

A non- quilter saw a little block I did, with lots of complicated piecing and asked "Did you sew all those little bits together?" I admitted I had, and she stared aghast and said "Why?"

A friend said to Keryn about quilting teachers... "They're just jumped up housewives", knowing full well that Keryn was a teacher herself.

A friends mother-in-law said to her "You have such lovely rings, it's a pity your hands are so ugly."

At a Trivia night a friend's husband stared at us in astonishment and said "You girls are quite intelligent aren't you?"

Keryn's daughter has a small mole on her face and a close family member brayed "She'd be such a pretty girl if it wasn't for that thing on her face". While Seonaid was greeting her...

After some haircut that my mother didn't approve of she wailed "How can I make you see how hideous you look?"

I was quite an accomplished artist in my early teens and a neighbour saw one of my paintings and blurted, "Oh! I didn't think you had THAT much talent!"

I once went to a hairdresser after a year of neglect and the little guy looked as if it was killing him to have to deal with me. Afterwards I said brightly,"That looks better", and he sneered "It couldn't look Worse!"

Keryn and I were the first designers in Australia to print and publish our own pantographs. When I told this to a family member (with a bit of justifiable pride) she said "What about the world? Were you the first in the World?" Well no, we weren't.... Now, if someone tries to put us down, all Keryn and I have to say to each other is 'But were you the first in the World????' and we dissolve in helpless laughter.

Some of these can be attributed to thoughtlessness, but it's horrible when people seem to deliberately conspire to put you down. All I can say, Bonnie, is set the bad comments on the scale against all the lovely, kind, caring things that are said about you, and you'll see where the problem lies. It's not with you.

And keep doing that sewing thing.....


Sarah July 08, 2007  

Can I share one? A woman at church told me once, "Oh! You're wearing make-up tonight! It looks really good! I mean, what a difference!" Pretty sure it was thoughtlessness in her case, which makes it easier to laugh at.

sewprimitive karen July 08, 2007  

How awful! But I do love those favorite family phrases where all you have to do is say it and everybody roars with laughter. Can I borrow your "First in the World", I love it...

meggie July 09, 2007  

I could not quite believe some of the cruel things you told us about, but I dont doubt they are true. Some people are just plain mean & nasty, & I always feel they have a jealousy caused by their own mediocrity.
How could anyone not love that beautiful quilt you made.
I think sharing the horrible bits & laughing about them, helps to dispel some of the hurt.
My mother had a knack of saying things that could cut to the quick, but she never intended such hurt. I hate being so thin-skinned!

Sue July 09, 2007  

It's hard to understand why some people need to be so negative & try to put others down. The worst ones are the ones who act like they're trying to be helpful or pretend they're just teasing. I don't think that they realize how bad it makes them look, I have to feel sorry for them. I LOVE your story about "Were you the first in the WORLD???" HAH!

Helen July 09, 2007  

In-jokes are the best! Now, was I the first in the world to say that???

Tracey @ozcountryquiltingmum July 23, 2007  

Too true, loved all of it, my mother is a master as well."Why did you cut your hair before you had that photo was your crowning glory?" My sister and I are the same, 'should I cut it, you know it is all i have going for Me,my crowning glory!'??!! I try to think brfore i speak because it is so easy to say a thoughtless thing, as Pretty woman would say, it's easier to believe the bad stuff..or the bad stuff is easier to believe, you get the picture!!!

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