I was an Earth Science teacher specializing in astronomy and planetarium education. I was forced into early retirement in 1997 due to debilitating arthritis. To stay active (and for physical therapy) he bought ten acres of 'unimproved' land in the Ozark foothills near the Mark Twain National Forest and the Ozark National Scenic Riverways. I garden, heat and cook with wood as fuel, and I carry water for my household from wells and artesian springs. At night by lamplight, I read, interact online, or knit - anything to keep moving and stay productive.
For company on my homestead I can haz numerous cats.
Do real men knit? Sure. A couple of mature ladies in a doctor's office were chatting with me one day. I was crocheting at the time (no clicking needles!). One asked the other, "Why are they better at it than we are?" I wouldn't agree that we're better, just that to care about doing something well has nothing to do with gender. I'm straight (as if that should be an issue), but I'm no 'phobe either. I think it is unfortunate that more people - men and women alike, do not know the healthful relaxation of craftwork. In our times who would not benefit from more relaxation? Knitting in Public events are good ways to help others look beyond gender or cultural sterotypes. Being ready and willing to teach others is a plus, as is referring interested people to online resources like the Knitting Daily eBooks and tutorials.