I think we’re seeing a resurgence of grassroots culture and crafty local commerce among popular/youth culture. Witness: Stitch ‘n Bitch and the new knitting kids, Whole Foods Market’s big boom, due at least partly to a broad interest in locally made, handmade, artisan foods. How do you account for the recent popularity of geeks, who, if I do say so myself, are often the craftiest among us? What about the do-it-yourself reporting of Indymedia? Or Readymade? Or make-your-own-encyclopedia, design-your-own-coffee-mug, etc.
Is a new barter culture emerging around all this, as well? Witness Bazaar Bizarre, formerly known as the punk rock craft fair.
Is this globalization backlash? Or is it more social: are we trying to connect with each other again amid all the imported goods?
Is it merely the next level of American individuality?
Everyone says we are overworked, but maybe they’re wrong; maybe we do have more free time, and we’re not using it to play video games, not all of it anyway. Maybe we’re finally seeing that time-saving technology advances have led us to a place where we can all persue the hobbies we desire? You may not want to work in a knitting factory, but a little knitting on the side would hit the spot.
What a luxury.