Tuesday, May 22, 2007

From the country that brings you ancient spindles and huge flocks of sheep...

I was going to post an entry with lots of pictures, but the blogger picture thing is being annoyingly slow, so I bring you this rant instead.

Once upon a time, I was an anthro major at Penn. (And by "once upon a time, I mean "until I graduated a week and a half ago.") Penn has a great museum of anthropology and archaeology. I basically lived there.

In the museum is an exhibit from Canaan, that has a lot of Bronze Age and Iron Age artifacts. There's even a model of a 3-pillared building, complete with goats, and a mannequin of a woman spinning wool on a drop spindle.

According to my advisor, who helped organize the exhibit, that mannequin costed the museum over a million dollars.

So here I am, in the land of wool-spinning artifacts, and I hit up a yarn store. And what do I find?

There's some cotton. There's some acrylic (like a whole store full...)


No sheep for me. No alpaca. No possum. No yak. No bambo or soy-silk for that matter. It's all cotton and acrylic.

What the hell is wrong with this country?

And where did all the wool go?


tikkunknitter said...

Greetings from a newcomer to the Jewish blogworld, and a Philadelphian who also shares an interest in knitting!

You might want to check out a recent essay by Rabbi Marc Rosenstein, "Plastic", in his August 1, 2007 "Galilee Diary" post for the URJ's "Israel Connections" series. I can forward a copy to you if you can't find a link (I can't seem to find it). Rosenstein's reflections address the transformation of kibbutz culture, with resonance for your trip to the Israeli yarnstore.

You may not have been able to find wool in Israel, but you can find Israeli wool here. Peace Fleece makes "Baghdad Blue" wool produced in collaboration with West Bank farmers (soon to be featured on my blog) - proceeds go to Neve Shalom, a very special intentional community of Israeli Jews and Palestinians living, learning and working cooperatively. I've started a group to knit for peace with this peace-inspiring wool - interested in working with us?

Knitter of shiny things said...


That sounds like a really cool project!

Though the one problem is that I don't live in Philly anymore. But if I can be a part of it through the internet, then I'm definitely interested. Where can I buy the wool?

tikkunknitter said...


Peace Fleece yarns are available at: http://www.peacefleece.com/knitting.htm

The "Baghdad Blue" colorway is &7.50 for 4 oz, and supports Neve Shalom/Wadat al Salam.

Information about Neve Shalom/Wadat al-Salam is available at: