May 31, 2005
Local girl makes it big
Every day last week someone kept coming here by searching google for various phrases having to do with Agnetha's hot ass. I'm sorry to inform you that there are no hot-assed pop superstars here; however there is one very hot supermodel whose name used to be Agnetha until she got all high falutin' and changed it to Pandora, probably on the advice of her agent. This little girlie was born in my bed and is the sister of Benny, better known to you as Fat girl (two guesses what Benny and Agnetha's brother and sister are called). Like all proper superstars Agnetha/Pandora has a somewhat chequered past, and at times we questioned her mental health, especially when she would meticulously arrange dead mice and birds on the sidewalk with frighteningly perfect symmetry. Turns out she just had a natural flair for decorating, and look! She even has her own magazine, just like Oprah.*
We're leaving tomorrow to drive down to Athens to meet with some people at the university and find me a place to live. I'm really looking forward to the drive down, because we're going to go through Smoky Mountains National Park again, which means going through Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg. I freaking loved (hated) this place so much the first time we were there; it's got to be the tackiest place on earth. It's miles and miles of crazy tourist traps all crammed up against each other, every crappy country singer has a restaurant (the Alabama Grill is right next to the Louise Mandrell Dinner Theatre, what an excruciating choice!). The strangest thing about this place is that if you turn off the main highway like we did, all of a sudden you're in some sleepy little dickwater, tiny falling-down churches and houses and a horse in the backyard grazing right under the laundry line, then turn back onto the highway and it's Mine Your Own Gemstones! Muscle Car Museum! Real Bears! Live Bears! See Them Touch Them Torment Them! The awfulness defies words. Luckily we'll have a digital camera this time, so words won't be necessary. Do you think I can convince Peter to get off the main highway and do a drive-by so I can at least see Dollywood this time? Hah! Not on your life. Last time I had to be content with taking a photo through the windshield of the sign that said "Dollywood that way".
And guess what else? Thursday night we'll be crashing at Hockey Mom's place! I'm so excited, she'll be the first blog friend I've ever met for real. Finally I'll find out if all these internet people really exist. My co-worker last night was totally weirded out about me staying at the house of a "stranger" I met on the internet. If I'm not back by Monday, better check Hockey Mom's freezer.
May 30, 2005
I'll win that Motley Crue mirror if it fucking kills me
Claudia was right. Spinning is like crack. Here's the hat I started with my second handspun.
That's an 8mm needle, baybee! I need to try to get this stuff thinner. Wanna see a closeup?
Of course, I didn't have enough yarn for a hat, so now I need to duplicate the colour. I started with roving (I don't know what kind of sheep this came from, it was just labelled "Australian wool") in these Kool-Aid colours:
L-R: Jamaica, Ice blue and Pink lemonade. I dyed this to match something else and sent as much as I could cram into the box to my Back Tack pal, then spun the rest. These three colours all spun up together made me think of being at the carnival, reeling on a sugar high, about to throw up from the last ride and eating disgusting food and candy that makes your tummy hurt. Since I didn't want to be reminded of that every time I looked at the yarn, I overdyed it in a mixture of Switchin' Secret and Lemon Lime to get the weird brick red and green. I'm going to do the same thing again, spinning the red, pink and blue before dyeing green; I'll show you what it looks like before it goes in the green bath and you'll see what I mean about the tummyache.
I think I'm getting a little better at making an even yarn.
Not much better, mind you, just a little better. Obviously there are still some trouble spots. I won't have to use the biggest circular needle I own to knit this one up, at least.
May 27, 2005
May 26, 2005
My arse made it down under before I did
Well. Caroline sent me a newspaper write-up of her current show, and there was a picture of one of her photo collages.
And yes, that's a picture of my arse in the top right corner, mooning all of Australia, or at least all those who read that paper. With a scrumptious-looking bruise from falling down the stairs. We took that picture right in front of D. the janitor; I think he was kind of embarrassed but it's hard to say, he might have just been drunk.
Did you notice that Caroline's name is a link? Because I've now managed to
bully talk another friend into joining me in wanking self-indulgently on the internets. That's two now! Two!
(cue lightning and thunder and large flashing number two)
We spent a sunny afternoon lounging outside today, and Benny has figured out that there are very potent drugs planted in the back yard. She's partial to culinary herbs and anything else stinky, but likes the powys castle artemisia the best.
Maybe she'll get hooked and start acquiring some of that heroin chic. Let's hope so anyway, because she's been on a diet for a year and has only become more portly. Luckily her physique doesn't get in the way of her elite athlete status; I think all of Canada will be proud to have the fats representing our country in the synchronized lying-down event of the Kittycat Olympics, don't you? I hope none of our garden plants turn out to be banned substances; I don't want Benny to be the next Silken Laumann.
They also excel in the synchronized running to the food dish. Maybe I can get some good shots during tomorrow morning's training session.
May 25, 2005
Perennial bachelor's button. I would love this for its name alone; blue flowers are just a bonus.
Kittycat and columbine.
May 23, 2005
Ply me a river
This weekend I went up to the spare room and dug out my drop spindle for the first time in more than two years and gave it another go. I am hopelessly bad at this, and I need some advice from all you pros out there.
In a bag with my spinning stuff I found a snarled pile of my first singles, spun almost three years ago from some blue and green mystery wool that the woman I bought my carding brushes from gave me to practice with. The yarn I made with it was uneven and sloppy. After I untangled it all, split it into two lengths and plied them together it looked a lot better and less uneven so I got cocky and tried making more singles with some madder-dyed merino roving, which was a freaking disaster. I don't mind so much the thick-and-thin thing, and I know that if I'm lucky some of that won't show so much once I get two plies together. But what's really driving me to distraction is how some parts of the yarn are spun way too tightly while other parts don't seem spun at all. Why does this happen? I don't really understand why the twist doesn't even itself out along the strand, and it's making me mental. Also this roving is a colossal pain in the arse; I've pulled it apart so it's a little thinner, and snapped it a little to loosen it up. Is there something else I'm supposed to be doing to get roving ready to spin? I think for now I'm just going to go back to some of the unprocessed fleece and the carders and spin from that, but I have a lot of roving (how on earth did I get this much?) and will need to figure out what to do with it sooner or later.
After my patience with the merino had run out, I looked in the bottom of my basket and there was a pile of rolags from the blue and green practice stuff; I spun those up, and then, because I don't know from ugly, I plied it together with the merino. And because I have no shame, here's a picture.
My plying is not all that even either. There's a shock. The blue-green looks okay, but do you see how in some places the orange is practically straight with the green wrapping around it? Oy.
I'm not too worried about the hideous colour combination right now; I'd rather just get my spinning a little better first, and this stuff was free. I'll probably knit a hat with this, because isn't that what everyone does with their sloppy first handspun? I'd make wristers but I would probably never wear them, and nobody else would want them.
Another question: a while ago I bought a sari at the dollar a pound Goodwill that is teal and mauve, two of my least favourite colours; I figured six metres of ugly silk is still six metres of silk, and it cost me less than a dollar. If I were to cut the sari into strips and spin singles with it, what do you think would happen if I tried to ply it together with a yarn from an unraveled sweater? Would I be smarter to just spin something to ply it with? I like the idea of making something from all recycled materials, but not if I'm just going to make a mess.
May 22, 2005
And do you know what happens if you leave a fish too long in an elevator?
Australian readers who will be in the Melbourne area next week might like to check out this exhibition of work by Caroline Mortimer, a chum of mine from university.
It's all new work she's been producing during the last year while in Japan and Australia. If you meet up with her at the reception, tell her I said hi.
May 21, 2005
Something itchy down there
For days now, "squirrel scrotum" has been the frontrunner for search term of the week. But then yesterday somebody found my site by searching "mohair and angora sweater only over my cock", blowing all other competitors aside. The best part? I always have to try these crazy search terms myself to see how high my page comes up, and I am number fourteen. But Jenla comes up number nine! So of course I clicked through to their blog so that mohair and angora sweater only over my cock will come up in their site stats tomorrow.
Okay, Glen or Glenda, you win the prize this week. Send me your mailing address and I'll search my closet for something appropriate to reward you with. And I hope your prize doesn't make you itch too much, down there.
In gardening news,
we have sprouts!
By Friday (one week from planting) only one echinacea seed had sprouted, and I was beginning to worry. But this afternoon I got home from work to find little baby basil, coriander, strawflower, love lies bleeding, bergamot, one red hollyhock, and lavatera. I swear none of these had sprouted yet this morning; they all came up while I was out on the side of the highway with Nancy, sweating through the crotch of my corduroy trousers in the blazing sun and blowing up six hundred balloons to build six 15-foot towers for a car dealership (yes, I went back to working at the party store; I thought they had me replaced but now everyone's on vacation so I'm filling in for June. And after this month, I'll never work for minimum wage again, I promise).
The lavatera is particularly exciting, because I have no idea what this plant looks like; it's one of the seeds Rob stole from someone's garden and mailed to me, and he knows us and our gardening style and preferences pretty well, and also has fabulous taste himself, so I'm sure it will be something amazing.
May 20, 2005
Gateway to paradise
After years of futile searching at the back of my Gramma's wardrobe, I finally found the gateway to Narnia when I was least expecting it.
There's a yarn store about a 20 minute walk from my house that I've been going to for a while now; it's very small and doesn't really carry anything but the most ordinary of yarns. Some time last year a new yarn shop opened up two blocks away from it, and I've been avoiding visiting this new shop, partly because I really like the lady who runs the old shop and partly because the new shop has the words "designer yarns" on its sign, and designer is a code word for expensive (and I'm poor). Well, yesterday I went over to the old yarn shop to pick up a few things, only to find that she's closed up until the 24th for vacation. Hmmph. So I went into the new store.
Well. I never thought you could get this stuff here, all the fabulous yarns that I see my internet buddies using but have never tried myself because I live in a dickwater that doesn't have nice things. This store has bamboo yarn. It has Cashmerino. It has Rowan, and omigosh all the Rowan BOOKS! It has Noro. It has Manos (I didn't go near the Manos, I knew better). It has sock yarn that is not acrylic. Really, really nice sock yarn, like the stuff I drool over on other people's weblogs (I promise I won't buy any not-acrylic-sock-yarn until I've finished up my butt-ugly Kroy Pom Squad socks, otherwise they'll never get finished). I limited myself to some Jo Sharp dk tweed (not an impulse buy, but one of the possibilities I was considering for my fall Knitty submission) and two skeins of Noro Kureyon (colourway 52) with which I immediately cast on for another boobholder.
Two skeins won't be enough, of course. Guess I'll have to go back. How have I been knitting for fifteen years and never tried this yarn before? All the magic hidden colours! The texture! I'm beside myself with exclamation points, somebody do something.
The one weird thing about this oh-so-wonderful shop: I told the lady I needed double pointed needles in size 5mm and 6mm. She didn't have those sizes, but offered me 5.5mm. Huh? Even Peter, who cares nothing about knitting, knows enough about gauge to scoff at this.
On the gardening front, some friends of ours are taking out part of their garden and putting in grass, so last night we went over and filled our van with plants. For now I've put them all into the back yard where the pool was, because we're not going to do anything out front until we have a planting plan. Here's a partial list of what our friends gave us:
-columbine (several colours, both native and non-native types, so some can go in the front yard)
-two kinds of artemisia
-two kinds of daisies
-spider wort, both green and purple varieties
-more hostas, because you can never have too many hostas, especially the fat chartreuse ones
-yarrow, which I always get mixed up with tansy, and it looks exactly like the thing we already had that I've been thinking was tansy, so I guess we have lots of yarrow now and no tansy after all
-sweet woodruff (how I love that stuff; I want a bed of it big enough to lie in)
-oregano, tagging along with one of the columbines
-something called "blue-eyed grass" that sounded kind of cool
-hens and chicks, the silliest garden plant ever. These will come in handy if we can ever get the 5-pin bowling balls we need to make our bowling ball rock garden. Won't that be a beautiful thing?
-the little tiny sedum that looks all wormy, which I'm also picturing spilling over lovely swirly bowling balls.
-coral bells (purple leaves); this is nice because I gave mine to Peter's mom, but I really like them
And I forget what else, but several other wonderful things. Pat, what else did you give us?
My other big summer project:
These are the stairs to our attic. See all the crud on them? Here's a better look.
The attic isn't finished, but will someday be my studio. There is still a ton of Barbage up there that I haven't had the heart to tackle yet, although I have taken many, many garbage bags of crapola out already. I've got some of my studio furniture up here, and a lot of my tools and stuff in boxes. Last year we had a new roof put on, and they had to tear all the way back to the original cedar and put new plywood down. This means that the entire attic, all my stuff and also all of the previous owner's shit and garbage, was covered in a layer of thick black dirt and chunks of hundred-year-old wood. And this summer I have to clean it all up. And I want to get up there soon; the wood I need for the woodcut I want to start working on is up there, buried in the black stuff, and I have to get it out.
Rest assured that I will likely be showing progress pictures of the attic cleaning, because that's the kind of geek I am. I know, all y'all can't wait to see it. I said "all y'all"! Was that a correct usage? I'm trying to figure out whether the difference between "all y'all" and "all a y'alls" is a regional thing or a usage thing before I get to Georgia, so I don't mess up with the local lingo and embarrass myself. (Hah! Y'all know I'll be listening to Neil Young and the Rheostatics constantly while in Georgia in an attempt to retain my Canadian accent against the power of the insidious drawl).
Here's a close up of the peeling paint on the stairway wall:
I love textures like this. I think I'm just going to sand all the big chunks off and leave it this way.
May 18, 2005
A good day to give it all away
If I ever wind up living alone again, this could well be me in a few decades; the crazy lady down the block who emerges from her house cowering from the television news cameras and clutching her giant silver dildo for dear life as Humane Society workers remove hundreds of cats and dogs from the property. Except there won't be any cages, because they will all be sleeping in my BED. All 271 of them.
I said I'd be knitting for summer, but started knitting for winter instead:
I bought several big balls of Icelandic Lopi for fifty cents each at a thrift store a while back, even though my relationship with Lopi in the past was turbulent enough for me to swear off ever using it again. It was the fifty cents a ball thing, I totally got sucked in. Last night while trying to choose what knitting to bring to a meeting that I knew would be long and I suspected would be contentious, I figured out what to do with the wool, and cast on for a child's cardigan for the Dulaan Project. While tempers rose and the meeting got sidelined again and again, I just kept knitting away, thinking about those little kids Ryan showed us pictures of, and it kept me from saying anything more than mildly bitchy all night. And I'm more than halfway done a sweet little stripey jacket that will keep somebody super warm next winter. I think I'll have enough wool left for a second, smaller sweater too, for a toddler.
And because today's theme is giving it away, I cleaned out my Paypal account and gave it to Claudia's bike ride for MS. Because my oldest, dearest friend has MS. (my oldest dearest friend with MS is also PREGNANT! Didn't I say as soon as I started knitting for babies more people would start spawning?)
I also did some work on trying to figure out the cable I want to use on Peter's sweater. It's based on this border pattern
from Folio 21 v. of the Book of Durrow. That's the page with the funny little dude wrapped in a crazy blanket. Here's my first attempt at knitting up the cables from my sketch:
It's hard to see because I used one of my less successful Kool Aid dyeing attempts to swatch with. But can you see the spirals? Whee!
May 16, 2005
I'm operating on the assumption that if you go ahead and get ready for summer, summer will come
We've decided not to wait any longer for spring to arrive, but to brave the bitter cold and do some work in the garden. We're focussing our efforts mainly on the front yard for now, because it's smaller and everyone can see it. Our fabulously talented and generous friend Rob has offered to do a design for us, so with that in mind I went out on Saturday to measure the area and make a drawing for Rob to work from. I've also started a project page for the garden, which you can access here if you're actually interested in the gritty details. For now there's just my drawing and some photos of the sorry patch of dirt and weeds we have to work with.
We also spent some time pulling out the last of the euonymous and other stuff we didn't want there, trying somewhat in vain to get all of the white marble chips out (seriously, who puts that shit in gardens?) and pulling up the layer of rotting black plastic that was underneath it all. This little dude thought I was digging up breakfast just for him, and wouldn't leave me alone.
I won't duplicate all of the progress photos here, but here's one I took from the porch this afternoon after I put the tarp down to kill the grass.
Because I'm a total cheapskate and also a slob, instead of a tarp I'm using the cover from the pool that was here when we moved in, all cut into pieces. Because I don't really care what the neighbours think of me, or of my yard. It was a nasty job; the tarp's been lying on the ground in the back yard all winter, killing grass, so it's collected all kinds of mud and tree droppings and slime and when I lifted it up it was stinky like something died in it way back in December. The grass that was underneath it out back is well and truly dead, and the birds have been having a heyday out there in the bare patch, chowing down on all the snails. Yum.
The piss-poor weather isn't stopping me from planning this year's roster of slutty summer knits. Camocleo only needs some triangles to cover up my boobs and she is finished.
The lace detail doesn't show up all that well in the mixed yarn, but I think this top is going to be hot hott hottt anyway.
I've also started working on Kim's "Sexie" halter from S'n'B Nation. I love this little top. I'm making it out of a red ribbon yarn recycled from secondhand (did someone say cheap? Yeah, I'm cheap). I bought this ugly ribbon pullover a year ago thinking the yarn was kind of neat, and have been despairing ever since of ever finding anything good to knit from it; it's glam in a frumpy middle-aged lady polyester accordian-pleated slacks kind of way, and even though I may be on the cusp of middle age, I'm not really striving for frumpy polyester glam. Frumpy, at least, is a look I can pull off without really trying very hard.
The yarn's got this crazy sparkle (see? middle-age glam! It makes me want to paint my toenails salmon pink just looking at this stuff) that's impossible to photograph.
This is what it looked like knitted loosely in the big awful pullover. This is what it looks like worked on 4.5mm needles, in Sexie's eyelet pattern:
Much better, no?
Also on the slutty summer knit list:
Soleil (not slutty on its own, but I think I'm going to carry the lace through more of the torso, and narrow the straps);
finishing the red peekaboo skirt;
and both of Stefanie's boobholder/skirts from S'n'B Nation. Because I was only going to make the mesh one (I'm a big sucker for the mesh) but then I saw the Cap'n's version of the other one in progress, and now I want it too. Even though it's not quite as slutty. I might want to make a few things I can wear to job interviews too.
May 13, 2005
I've just now gotten around to making the categories on the weblog, and I'm in the middle of going through all my old entries and sorting them into my spanking new archive sections. I don't know if making this little change in each entry will cause it to come up as new in Bloglines, so in case this happens I'd like to apologize to all of my subscribers for this minor pain in the arse. It'll be worth it when everything is neatly stored away in tidy little cubbies. Now if only I could do this with my home.
Peter found these while walking near the university yesterday. They were a little too high to jump up and bonk our heads on, sadly.
Thanks to everyone who wrote and reassured me that it is okay to cry over a broken cup. I've been thinking that maybe I'll go ahead and get a bunch of those mugs, since I know that my special mug can't really be replaced by a lookalike. Snowball assures me that Anasazi knockoffs are common and plentiful where she lives, so maybe I'll redo my whole kitchen in it. A nice big bowl in that style for mixing bread would be lovely, if I can find one. I did call Mesa Verde today but nobody was there.
And I decided not to throw the fats in front of the bus after all, because I don't know which of them broke the cup and it's not really fair for the innocent one to die, and plus throwing cats in front of buses is illegal. And they've been with me for a long time (although not quite as long as my cup), and ruined countless things, none of which I have killed or even harmed them for. So I guess I'll just forgive the stupid little shits.
Oh look, they've clawed the crap out of this chair. Ah well, that wouldn't be the first chair they've destroyed. Shits.
So today I started some seeds for the garden. Only about a month late. Here is what we need to do in order to get our property the way we want it:
-finish taking down the deck
-cut down the trees next to the house
-dig up the remaining roots from the lilac bush I cut down; cut off the remaining stump from the cedar tree I cut down; dig up the rose bushes
-mark out where the new patio will go and put down limestone screenings
-mark out paths
-move the tarp to kill the rest of the grass
-take the pool pieces to the dump
-build a composter
-prepare beds for the seedlings and the plants we're bringing from Pete's mom's place (since we moved to Windsor we've been storing a lot of our plants in her garden)
-rake up the Barbage and throw it away (the half of the front yard that was garden is full of white marble stones, terra cotta chips and cedar mulch)
-stake down a tarp to kill the remaining grass
-prepare beds and plant.
The front yard is going to contain all native plants. Southwestern Ontario is a pocket of Carolinean forest, and the Windsor area is a tiny overlapping pocket of tall grass prairie. We're going to concentrate more on the Carolinean, but might allow some tall grass prairie plants to creep in there. The back yard will be divided into four, with one area for big messy perennials, one area Japanese, one area kitchen garden and I don't remember what we talked about for the fourth area. Woodland, maybe. Where I'm cutting down trees we're going to put in a flowering crab, and plant shade-loving stuff like sweet woodruff and trilliums. This is the corner of the yard that's visible from the computer desk, where I spend most of my time.
So here is a list of the seeds I've started today. Some will go in the front and some in the back.
-purple obedient plant (front yard)
-two kinds of hollyhock, black and red
-echinacea (front yard? is this native?)
-two kinds of rudbeckia, the good old fashioned side-of-the-road kind and one with a red centre
-butterfly milkweed (front yard)
-something called "cleome", seeds harvested from the native Carolinean garden on campus. I don't remember this plant at all but I drew a picture of its flower on the bag of seeds and wrote "big, purple", so I'm sure I must have liked it at the time (front yard)
-bergamot. Even gone to seed and then stored in the freezer for eight months, it still smells divine.
-joe pye weed, one of my all-time favourites (front yard)
-lavatera: I have no idea what this is, Rob collected the seeds and mailed them to me, and he knows us pretty well so I'm sure we'll love it.
-marigolds, for dyeing
-coreopsis, a solid yellow, not my favourite coreopsis tinctoria. I had a nice healthy patch of that last year until the roofers killed it. Grr. They killed my eryngium too, the pricks.
-something labelled "? beside sage, yellow flower", from the back garden Pete put in at his mom's. It might be that thing that's like savoury but you don't eat it; does that have a yellow flower?
-silver dollar plant
-love lies bleeding. This is a gorgeous weedy trollop of a plant and I try to plant it everywhere I go. Even the seeds are beautiful, like tiny, tiny garnets.
-thai chili pepper
I'm hoping the weather will be pleasant enough over the weekend to get some of the cleaning up and prep work done. And since I've discovered that you can't kill a forsythia bush by leaving it in a bucket for two winters, I'm going to plant that, where I'm taking out rose bushes.
May 12, 2005
Look at what the fats did.
They broke my cup.
This may seem like a small thing. But it is not.
I bought this cup in the Salvation Army store twelve years ago for about a dollar. It's a replica of a CE 1200 Anasazi black-and-white pottery mug, originally sold as a souvenir. It holds about 25% more than an average coffee mug. Its base is fatter than its rim, giving it a jaunty air, and its handle is thick and sturdy, with plenty of room for all four fingers. And it has this amazing zigzag design. This cup saw me through years of caffeine addiction, and since Peter and I gave up coffee in December of 2003 it's held several cups a day of Irish Breakfast tea instead. I am unhealthily attached to this cup, so much so that I've actually spent time worrying about whether I should take it to Athens with me or leave it here so I'll have it when I come home to visit (because I couldn't imagine drinking my tea from a different mug here in my house). I even dream about my cup sometimes, that's how much I love it.
I know it's just a thing, but I cried bitterly when I came home and found it smashed on the floor this afternoon, and briefly considered tossing the culprits into the path of an oncoming bus. I cried way more than anyone should cry over a thing. The fats, of course, were trying to get at some knitting I'd left next to the computer, and in pulling it down off the desk they knocked the cup onto the floor. Yes, I left my mug out on the desk, and yes I left knitting out too. I am a little piggy in a pigsty. But there must have been at least ten different knitting projects scattered about the room, plus umpteen more balls of yarn kicking around, and they always go for the stuff on the table, never the computer desk. And I always leave my mug next to the computer.
Peter says that cats are an engine of destruction, and they will work methodically through everything you own until finally they reach the things you love. I would rather they had broken every dish in the kitchen and leave this cup intact.
Look, the handle is indestructible.
I think I might be able to replace it. From Mesa Verde National Park you can get replica mugs, and you can even order them by mail. But while the website says there are eight designs available, only one is pictured. So I am going to phone them tomorrow, with the product number, to see if they still make my cup. Because I care that much. I wish I could just get all eight, but I'm a poor student, so that's not happening.
I'm feeling miserable about the loss of my beautiful, beloved tea cup, and annoyed with myself for being such a baby about a thing. And I really don't want to go to bloody Leamington tonight.
May 11, 2005
Let's quit with the potty talk around here
Because this is getting ridiculous.
There is nothing to be found on this website on most of those topics. All of the nurses around here wear prim blue uniforms and starched aprons and sturdy shoes. Speaking of which, AS IF I write about my shoes. Please.
Instead I'm going to tell a cat story. Because we know that everyone who knits and has a weblog loves to write cat stories.
When Peter's son Dylan was seven, his favourite song was "Lost in the Supermarket" by the Clash, and when Pete played it on his guitar and sang it, Dylan had actions he would do along with the song. Essentially it involved pretending to push a grocery cart around our apartment and put things in it, but it was quite funny.
So yeah, how is this about the fats. Tonight Peter was playing and singing "Just like honey" by the Jesus and Mary Chain, and over on the armchair the fats were doing the actions: Fat girl was lying on her side with her leg in the air, and Fat boy, well, in the interest of keeping the Google searching pervs away, let's just say he was doing the actions to the "licking up" part.
May 10, 2005
Somebody dropped off a scrotum?
My little next-door neighbours, K and M, are 5 and 3. When the weather's nice they play outside watched only by their ageing dog, who doesn't seem to mind them knocking on my door six or eight times a day to bug me while I'm working (my kitchen stovetop is covered in rocks that they brought to the door over the weekend, saying "this one's for you, and this one's for the boy!").
The third time they hammered dingdongdingdongdingdong on my doorbell this afternoon, I was all ready to give them a lecture about how rude and annoying it is to wail on the bell like that, but when I opened the door they were jumping up and down looking panicked and shouting at me something about someone dropping off something in their yard that sounded like scrotum, and that their mother had said to leave it for daddy. "Somebody dropped off what?" I asked; "a scodo!" "a scrowowtay!" "a scowotoe!" (the just-turned-5-year old doesn't enunciate very well, and isn't any easier to understand than her little sister). Even though I know it's a mistake to come out on the porch, because they will think I'm coming to play and that they can run into my house and terrorize the fats, I felt I'd better investigate.
They led me to the front of their porch steps and pointed behind the bushes, screeching the whole time.
It was a squirrel tail. Or part of one, at least.
I actually went in for my camera, but thought better of taking a picture; even if their mother didn't see me taking pictures of rodent parts on her property, the girls would be sure to tell her. And for now I think my neighbours still like me.
May 08, 2005
Nobody here but us fully clothed people
Ahh. What better way to spend a sunny afternoon than out on the deck with knitting, bare toes and a sleepy kitty?
A recap on the week from heck: I got my submissions done for the magazine: four designs, three of which have three or more variations, so lots of options.
I gave my conference presentation yesterday, and it went pretty well despite the fact that I was totally unprepared and only started putting my notes together the night before (and even then I ended up watching about 4 hours worth of the Live Aid dvd with my houseguest instead of doing my work, and finished up my notes in the morning). Fortunately I have the gift of the gab, so I don't really need notes in order to talk and talk and talk. All was good. My talking even made sense for a change.
The Big Girl Knits sample is almost done. I'm going to work on it some more tonight, and it will definitely be put in the post tomorrow. And then, since the weather's finally warmed up, I can get on to the yard work that needs doing, and starting some slutty summer knits.
Does anybody know if cats can get stomach flu? Fat boy puked all weekend; I had to get out of bed twice last night when he woke me up gagging in the hallway (better to deal with it in the night than to have forgotten it's there by morning).
Oh, and I did a Google search for live nude girls, and although a search within the results shows that my site is there somewhere, I looked through about the first seventy pages and I'm not there. And yet "live nude girls" shows up in my search query stats almost every single day. Who the hell are these people, who have the time to slog through so much p*rn and still find me? Why don't they just go buy a magazine?
May 06, 2005
Live nude girls!
For some reason my website keeps getting Google hits for "live nude girls" and "young nude girls". Listen buddy, there are indeed nude girls here, but they're all me, and no matter what exotic and unusual talents I may possess, I don't think I'm the kind of girl you're looking for. And I'm not that young.
Another common Google search that will find you here is "masterbation blog". I'm thinking of going back and fixing the misspelling that Farrah left in my comments last fall, so that at least I will only come up on "masturbation blog" searches from now on. Because I like my pervs to be able to spell.
*I am not trying to imply that qpaukl is the one searching for live nude girls. The picture is gratuitous. Masturbatory, even.
May 05, 2005
One day the machines will awaken and devour us in our beds
It's been a very cold spring here in the so-called "Sun Parlour", so cold that we're still running the furnace almost every day. Since we need to leave our bedroom door closed all day to keep the cats from making off with our socks, and the room gets rather cold, we like to run the little electric heater in there for a while before we go to bed so that the room's not too freezing to have sex in. We've got it set up on a table so that it warms the surface of the bed, because I am a wimp about getting naked on a cold bed.
So Tuesday night, this is what we did. About an hour or so after we had turned off the heater and gone to sleep, we were awakened by flashing lights and whirring motors and flailing panic--the heater turned itself on. All by itself. Just like Maximum Overdrive, but thankfully without the AC/DC soundtrack. Poor Peter had the thing about two feet from his face, but in the panic that ensued he managed to get it shut off before it could attack.
Needless to say, we won't be leaving it plugged in any more.
May 04, 2005
Books, trousers, chart key. . . done.
May 03, 2005
The week from heck
I thrive on deadlines and often find that my brightest flashes of creative inspiration happen when I'm right down to the wire (at least that's my excuse for so often putting off creative projects until the last minute). As always, all of my deadlines are happening at the same time and I'm scrambling to finish lots of things at once. These are the things I need to get done this week:
1. Finish knitting the sample for Big Girl Knits by the weekend and send it off. I'm finally in the home stretch, but I have to say, I'm so fucking bored with knitting this. I'm using Jo Sharp Desert Garden Aran Cotton, which is a gorgeous yarn that I will never. use. again. It hurts my hands and wrists so much that I can't work on the piece for long stretches of time and have to take frequent breaks instead, which is why I'm not as far along with it as I wanted to be (like, done). It also twists like you wouldn't believe, and tangles up on itself. If I had realized this yarn would be such a pain in my arse I never would have chosen it, but I'd never worked with it before and it's just so lovely.
2. Make a chart key for the BGK project, which I forgot to include when I sent in my pattern and charts. Write down the two things I noticed that need to be changed in the pattern and send it to Mandy.
3. Bind two blank journals, in leather with raised crosses on the front covers, by Wednesday afternoon. These are going to London and are to be given as gifts on Thursday (the glue has to be dry on them when they leave my house on Wednesday, because these are for people who don't know me, and therefore won't be as understanding about receiving wet books as some other people who love me have been in the past, um, Dad, Mary, Chris). Here are the books waiting for their covers to be laced on:
4. Hem a pair of trousers for Peter, also by Wednesday afternoon.
5. Organize my slide carousel for the conference presentation I'm giving Saturday morning. And, uh, write down what I'm going to say.
6. Make sketches and swatches for five new designs to submit for another publication (deadline Friday).
7. Clean up the kitchen and bathroom and get a bedroom ready for a houseguest who is arriving some time on Thursday.
Just because I have no time to work on other projects doesn't mean I'm not, of course.
When my hands get too sore from working on the other thing, I've been putting in a row or two on the top down baby raglan cardigan in the centre there; it's nice soft, soothing, boring Bernat Cotton Tots. Ahhh, that's better. These are the best colours I could get this stuff in (I think poor Peter wanted to disown me in the craft store when I told the lady that no, I didn't want those sucky baby colours because I don't intend to enforce gender stereotypes on other people's children, I'll leave that up to the parents to do. Really, people, those baby colours suck!). Since it's spring and once again every woman my age except me is pregnant, I've got four babies to knit for so far, but I'm sure one or two more will turn up before the spring is through. I'm a little behind; this sweater is for a baby who has already been born, then the next one is for the baby whose shower I missed. I'm not doing so well on the baby knitting front, I guess.
On the left is camoCleo, which I only started because I had to go to a meeting in a smoky bar and couldn't risk the BGK thing or the baby sweater getting stinky. It's a good thing too, because camoCleo reeks of smoke now.
On the right is what's left of my boobholder. If I was smart I would have unravelled it just to the armholes and worked the body portion a little narrower. But I am rash and impetuous and not so smart; I took the whole thing apart and then thought of that. Oh well.
All right, back to work. I need somebody here to crack a whip over me.
Nah, that would probably just distract me more.
May 02, 2005
Keeping girls in their place
I bought this charming little book at a local church rummage sale the other night, thinking my stepmother Sherry (a nurse) would get a kick out of it.
Here are some interesting things I learned from the nurse book: all doctors are men; all nurses are women; all patients are men, except for children hurt in accidents, who are always girls. Nurses "are always cheerful and smiling", even if they are tired, even if they have to clean up someone's shit, even if they've just sustained a serious back injury trying to lift a flailing old man into a bed, even if they hate their crappy job and their stupid uniform. Nurses will bring you your breakfast and sing you to sleep, because they are just like another mommy.
It's a "carefully planned book which will help to answer the many questions that lively children ask".
"Mum, can I be a doctor when I grow up?"
"No dear, you're just a girl. You can only be a nurse."
My favourite part:
Because, after all, they will only be working as nurses until they can find a husband and become baby factories themselves.
On playground accidents:
The message here: girls should not roughhouse in the schoolyard, because they are more delicate than boys and when they fall down they may break a bone (on another page, the child hit by a car while riding a scooter was also a girl; clearly they should just stay safely indoors and dream of the day when they can become nurses and find doctors to marry).
Before you write and remind me that this book was published forty years ago, let me say that I don't think a lot has changed in the way that children are subtly influenced to view themselves: the son of some friends of mine recently said to me "I have all the trucks, and my sister has all the dolls. My mommy said boys can't play with dolls, and girls can't play with trucks". And remember, "math is hard".
One thing I did like in this book was the spiffy endpaper:
I'm thinking of trying to talk Sherry into getting a tattoo of that prim little nurse with all the parts of her uniform labelled. Sherry, I'll get the telephone if you'll get the nurse; we can go together! Deal?
Here's where "careful planning" went a little wrong:
When you are asleep they can do anything they want to you and you will not know about it. Reassuring, no?