I know, I know. I promised an answer to this question days ago, but the answer I've been formulating is so deep and profound that it required days of thought and this warning:
This could suffice to answer the question, but I'm not going to let it.
Generation X is looking for something meaningful on our terms. Gen-Xers want to experience a meaningful and authentic life, but we're distrustful of the ways our parents and grandparents did it (and farked everything up). So we're going about things in ways that our parents didn't. Some have gone crunchy and prefer to eat only organic food rather than scarf down Bird's Eye frozen frankenpeas. A few found meaning in new age spiritual movements instead of going to church. I choose to make socks instead of buying those nice nylon ones that will one day live forever in a landfill.
So that's why I need to make things. I'm disillusioned with the single serving culture that I've lived in all my life. I want things that take effort to achieve and bring lasting pleasure. So I knit socks.