Used by permission, 11/25/12
Hooking should come with a warning label. It’s infectious and there isn't really a cure, so it keeps coming back, over and over until it fills our houses with rugs. Some may be bitten with a mild case and have only a few rugs on their floors and walls, but others are bitten severely and have filled their houses, to such a degree that excess pieces are forced into trunks and closets, hidden away as not to shock the observer with the degree of our sickness. Fortunately, this disease is not life threatening but the symptoms can vary in intensity. Once you feel the desire to hook the next project, get to your nearest rug hooking store for the cure.
The first sign that you’ve been infected is the presence of random thoughts. Your mind skips all over the place until it settles on a project, making you dizzy in the process. Some find relief by purchasing a ready-made pattern while others prefer self-dosing and sketch their own design. Getting this out of your system as quickly as possible is a must, because you can experience feelings of 'bursting at the seams' which means it’s now too late, you’ve reached second stage.
Luckily this stage doesn’t last long and as soon as your idea is laid to paper there will be a sense of release before a new symptom wells up to take its place. For this, call a rug shop and take one to two yards of burlap or linen, this should bring some relief. Once that is out of the way and your pattern is on the backing, along comes stage three, the overwhelming desire to hunt down and secure the wool. This can be the most feverish stage and be warned, there could be drool. Your eyesight may falter as you stare half delirious at yard upon yard of wool, while your brain plays tricks of indecision. Your feverish mind screams silently, "Why can't I have it all?"
Forth stage is the actual hooking, the longest stage before the inevitable end. Try not to get distracted so you can get through it quickly. Don’t let it lie around and fester, prolonged delays can lead to anxiousness and subject you to comments from annoying, over achiever, “I can hook a rug in two weeks”, hookers. Remember, all stages are highly contagious and meeting in groups will spread it rapidly. Unfortunately, being exposed does not build immunities and you will experience the same symptoms for every project you do.
Side effects might vary from hooker to hooker:
1. Anal retentiveness, far better than anal leakage but just as annoying.
2. If you think your floor stand will be erect for more than four hours, immediately call your friends and make an evening of it.
3. Erratic behavior in rug shops; the impulse to fondle, caress and spend money for wool that you hide from your husband in the trunk of your car.
4. Hyperventilating from the sight of a piece of wool that someone found on the store shelf or Frenchies, seconds before you arrived and won't part with it.
5. Insomnia may occur; hooked in bed and the wool dust keeps you sneezing and itching.
6. Stiffness in joints from prolonged sitting in one position.
7. Skin Irritations; gripper rash.
8. Drowsiness at work the following day from hooking past midnight the night before.
9. Irritability; that housework and family get in the way of completing your rug.
10. Taking on higher doses of projects than you can handle.
11. Dry mouth may occur; take 1 to 2 glasses of wine, rum or scotch.
12. Lack of sexual drive; lust is only for ruggy not huggy!
13. Experiencing highs and lows….in loop height.
14. Confusion; can’t decide what colour looks best in a particular area, ripping it out, trying something else and then ripping that out and putting the first choice back in.
15. Increased hyperactivity, hooking fast to Git-R-Done!
16. Excessive sweating; already hormonally challenged with debilitating hot flashes, don't you think a wool rug on your lap in 30 degrees Celsius temperatures, with 100% humidity could be a cause not a symptom?
17. Decreased interest in work, outside activities, family and non rug hooking friends.
18. Addictive behaviors, such as wool hoarding.
19. Lapse in judgement; you want to buy wool and consider a bolt....to the car that is, with a stash tucked under your arm while screaming at hubby, "Start the car! Start the car!"
20. Incontinence; Too busy hooking to get up and go to the bathroom after all that wine. A box of Depends? - Priceless!
Do not operate heavy machinery or drive while rug hooking!
Depression - Can occur if you sit furniture on your rug for long periods, but don’t worry the loops should spring back once the object is removed.
A Support Group is held at 7:00 pm, the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of every month at Encompassing Designs Rug Hooking Studio. All hookers are welcome. Help for all stages is available. You are not alone!