Attention Seeking Behavior or ASB.
Examples of ASB:
*Courtesy of alcoholrehab.com
As I mentioned in my previous post, I was forced to watch QuiltCon from the sidelines through Twitter and Instagram.
The fun part was watching the delight and joy of those who took classes with people like Lotta and Valori and Jay and were wide-eyed at the quilts that were hung and the craftsmanship on display. So happy that some of my favorite bloggers and a handful of my guild friends got to go and be a part of things. That was fun to follow - like watching little kids at quilting Disney World.
On the flip side, it was hard to stomach the ASB during and after the event.
There was a smattering of quilt bloggers and designers out there who were a bit uncensored in their work and what they said on their blogs and on Twitter. Hey - you wanna show your ta-tas and drop the f-bomb and talk about how badass you are? Knock yourself out. Personally, I think I have a great rack and sometimes I have pottymouth and occasionally I get pretty full of myself. But I guess I'm a little shy about posting my girls on Instagram. That's just me.
But I think what's triggering my gag reflex is less obvious than nudity or profanity. I'm not that bothered by that stuff. I think what I'm feeling is a mild allergic reaction to the self-consumed, the pontifical and the pseudo-intellectual ASB.
Let's be honest - those of us who blog and write books and Tweet/IG regularly have some part of us that needs the attention it brings. I own that I like to be the center of attention every once in awhile. I understand the need to feel special and unique. I understand the need to assert your own brand of personality to draw readers and customers of your product.
But I don't really understand the need to bloviate about the why's and how's of your personal quilting and the self-inflated value of your talents and why your artsy-fartsy tendencies or post-graduate degree makes you more qualified to quilt than everyone else. That seems to me to be...well.... annoying ASB. Spare me.
So it leads me to Lesson #2:
I value humility. True humility. I value sharing my gifts, being part of a community and being an active participant in a movement. I value being confident enough in myself and my skills to share with others. I'm learning to embrace self-promotion as a form of ministry to others so I can share my story and my gifts and to teach others about something that has brought me joy and purpose and community. And honesty is paramount. I don't bill myself as something I'm not. I don't pad my resume or assign myself titles that I haven't truly earned. I don't claim to have a superpower that enables me to quilt in my own special way.
Bottom line, watching the ASB has taught me about myself. Really examining my agenda and motives to be active in my guild or the online quilting community or why I want to teach and lecture has led me to understand that I just wanna sew with my peoples. And I wanna teach people to sew. And I really want people to value themselves and others enough to actively practice humility and promote community over seeking "fame" in a niche market.
I realize opining here about ASB puts me dangerously close to the over thinking of our craft that has chapped my hiney in the last few weeks- this fact is not lost on me. But there's no call to action here. There's no "look at me I'm so fabulous and badass".
And I realize this might come off as superior or uppity. It's not my intention at all. And it's certainly not my intention to throw anybody under the bus. That's not really my style (unless you plagiarize my crap - then I'll throw you under the bus after I kick you in the jimmies. More on this story later this week.)
Just wanna talk about what's going on in the quilting scene with some humor and candor and tell you what I've learned about my little ol' self.
Humility and honesty. I dig 'em.
*Okay - so I closed comments on this post because I think we need to move on. My intention isn't to bash anyone, rather my intention is to be introspective and find a little humor in something that I think is pissing a lot of people off.
Thanks for your support. Let's just buy fabric and cut it up and sew it back together however we like, mkay?