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My time is being taken up by this Fairbank sleeveless sweater knitting project at the moment. Whilst I appear finally to have got the hang of it, after umpteen mishaps, the yarn is giving me a lot of hassle and I am spending far too much time trying to tame it in order to knit something coherent. I don’t like waste, and having to cut the hairy alpaca yarn every time it becomes tangled is annoying and leaves lots of loose ends that have to be woven in neatly.

All of which is a convenient, if rather extended, metaphor for what’s going on in my head at the moment.

Christmas was rather fraught at times. I was dealing with the conflicting demands of a mother who monopolises conversation and makes everything about her in every social situation, while paying no heed to normal social behaviour, and the needs of the people she felt she had a RIGHT to see. Her repetitive dementia symptoms and lack of any short term memory don’t help. It’s hard to stay understanding with a person who has been “difficult” for many years, especially given my relationship with her, which isn’t close. She was berating me with her view and, while I do understand it, I wasn’t about to take her (uninvited) to see my relatives and ruin their day completely. That was hard and whichever way it was handled, there was never going to be a solution that left everyone unscathed. Eventually I came up with a compromise event that was predictably excruciating for a while. Sorry W. You coped very well given the onslaught.

I’m still dealing with the aftermath of the horrible situation precipitated by my blog post about casual racism a month ago. I admit, I was unwise to post it on Facebook, but actually only a few people read this blog and I altered it quickly. The person who was supposed to be a close friend of mine, upon realising that there was no way she could control what I said has decided to rescind her friendship and become petulant. I still feel completely betrayed by her attitude. I know I shouldn’t dwell on it, but I do. Everyone I love has told me that if she was willing to behave like that towards me, then I shouldn’t want her as a friend, but Facebook is awkward now and I am dreading tomorrow when I have to spend a couple of hours in her company.

And then there’s Twitter. I was watching the BBC News about that barbaric, disgusting rape of a medical student in Delhi which eventually resulted in her death from horrific injuries. I felt strongly that, no matter how heinous the crime, the people accused must be seen to have a fair, transparent trial. I think summary justice amounts to mob rule and is wrong. So this caused a bad reaction from a Tweep which left me shaken. I have seen this woman do this to others before: get hysterical when people disagree with her primitive point of view and accuse them of bullying her, flouncing off and unfollowing publicly to attract attention. I’m pretty sure I was right and did nothing wrong but it has left me still shaken nonetheless.

So the two forms of social media that are supposed to connect people and bring them together have ironically become places of isolation and resentment in recent days.

I do wonder, if adults behave in this puerile way, how can we hope to raise a generation of young people who behave better towards each other?

Anyway, these thoughts have been going round and round in my head and creating the extended metaphor above. Sorry about that. I do hope normal service will resume as soon as possible. Getting it all off my chest has helped.