August 30, 2005
Learning the language?
Yesterday morning, NPR news said that there was a 100% chance of rain for Athens in the afternoon. Silly me, I thought that meant we would be getting some rain, so I brought my umbrella.
But apparently, "100% chance of rain" is just some crazy Southern-talk for "sunny and hot".
So today, when NPR news told me that Athens had a 70% chance of rain for the afternoon, I took my umbrella out of my satchel and left it at home.
Which turned out to be a pretty good call, because that seems to mean "hot, humid and windy".
So, what will they say when it's going to rain?
August 28, 2005
Personality crisis, you got it while it was hot
Some people are still under the delusion that this weblog is about knitting. Just so I don't lose any more Bloglines subscribers with all my self-pity and moaning and lack of knitting content, here's a picture of something I finished last night.
Get a load of the glare on my shiny white belly: sex-ay! And those waistband creases, va va voom.
It's Stefanie's tube skirt from SnB Nation. I finished it up before leaving home but I had to redo the ribbing a little tighter. The truth is I've been working on nothing but Peter's sweater, since I'm on a deadline for it (I wanted to have it finished by now, of course), and can't show the progress on that to you just yet. But last night I pulled this skirt out and redid the ribbing so it would look like I'm still doing some knitting that isn't a secret.
The yarn is a cotton that I recycled from an old sweater. That should go without saying by now, eh? Y'all know exactly how cheap I am when it comes to buying yarn, but hey, if I've got some money to spend I'd rather buy paper for printmaking ('cause nobody's giving me a master's degree for knitting). And besides, there are so many lovely yarns out there in the thrift stores, just begging to be liberated from the ugly sweaters they've found themselves in. Think of it as a charitable action: save the yarn!
I made a few modifications: since I'll be wearing this exclusively as a skirt and not a shoulder thingy, I put ribbing at the top instead of the garter stitch edge that rolls. Because, as you can see in the photo, there are enough rolls around that area already. I also did a simple chevron lace pattern in the hem band instead of the bobbles on the original. Let's face it, bobbles are for skinnier girls than me. And my yarn was fatter than the yarn called for in the pattern, so I had to rejig the gauge in a big way.
imaginary friends made flesh
Last night Jenny organised a potluck at our place for me to meet some of her friends; Anne Marie came, and so did Carrie and Jacob. It was so strange seeing people walk in the door that I recognized from looking at pictures of them all the time on their blogs. Are they strangers? Or do I know them already? A bit of both, and a weird feeling. We had a blast, but I didn't take any photos to show. Some photos were taken by other people, but the best ones were not really the kind you want to put on the internet. All I'll say is that Carrie can put her whole fist in her mouth, and that those were among the worst pictures I have ever seen.
Well, okay. They weren't actually even close to the worst pictures I have ever seen. They're not even the worst pictures I've seen this week, because I've been doing a little bit of research on spider bites, just to put my mind at ease that these bites all over my right leg are nothing to worry about. I have two groups of bites behind my knee, one above (twelve days old) and one below (thirteen days old) as well as a smattering of individual bites across my thigh (eleven days old). The ones behind my knee are big and red, dried out and itchy. But it's okay. I looked at some pictures of brown recluse bites the other day (don't. don't ever look at pictures of that, if you can help it. I'm warning you) and now I'm not at all worried. Just itchy.
down with the past!
The blotting out of old images continues apace: yesterday I went in to the studio and covered up the rest of my old lithos with white ink, and put a second coat on those that I felt hadn't been sufficiently covered the first time. Now I'm ready to start printing on top of them. I also laid down some white ink on a couple of the cutout prints:
I have five of these that I printed on a tea-stained Japanese paper and never did anything with. I don't know what I'll put on top of them just yet, but I'm thinking of printing a layer of map-like lines, maybe in a green or blue so it will look like all those varicose veins I discovered on my legs one day at Pennsic when it was hot and I had nothing else to do but look at my own legs. I drove Pete, Miguel and Merouda crazy insisting that they look at all the little patches of spidery lines, and "look! there's more over here! Hey, there's a huge swath on this thigh too! On my ankle too! Look!". I was pretty excited to be getting old lady skin. Later when we went to a party where i.d. was being checked at the door, and Miguel and I had to walk all the way back to camp to get ours, I really wanted to show them my thighs instead. But it was too dark to fully appreciate the beauty of those fine little blue and purple cracks. But man, they're pretty.
Here are some more photos I took in the studio yesterday. In honour of a new school, new print shop and new beginnings for my work, I decided to retire my old printing apron and start fresh with a new one.
I found this one at Value Village, and it't just the thing, especially since I feel like I need to wear a Canadian flag on my forehead in order not to blend in with the infidels here in the U.S. Sing with me: I love Habitant, Habitant pea soup! Okay, not really. Ew, don't they put pork in there?
Here are my studio guardians: four cicada carapaces that I've found near Green Street. The two in the middle are bigger than any I've ever seen before. I have seven more back at the apartment that I picked up at Pennsic, including three found on the first day that spent the week lined up on the dashboard of our van, guarding and protecting my belongings as the van sat fully loaded in the parking lot. And it worked, too: Peter accidentally left the driver's door unlocked for two nights and nothing was stolen (he didn't tell me about this until we were in the hotel on our way to Athens, because he knew that I would freak out; my laptop was in there, and my stereo, and my art).
One more picture:
This image is from "The Historie of Foure-Footed Beastes" by Edward Topsell, printed in London in 1607 by William Iaggard. It's going to be my "Canadian" tattoo, and I think I'll put it on the inside of my right leg, a few inches above the ankle. Just as soon as I change it to a girl beaver. Because, sorry if this is TMI, but my beaver's a girl.
August 26, 2005
Rich (f.k.a. Cornelius) and Amanda have been talking about friendships (specifically what makes them end), and they've got me thinking about it too. So I'll follow Rich's lead and put my thoughts down here rather than leaving long-winded comments in other people's space. Maybe it's just my homesickness that's making me think about these things right now; maybe it's finding myself alone in a new place where I don't know anyone, but I feel like I know a bunch of people already because I read their blogs.
I was dumped by a friend this past year, possibly because of something I did or said although I haven't been able to figure out what it is that I did. I got the sense that it was related to my weblog somehow, but I didn't write anything there that would potentially lead to dumpage. I was busy with my studio work and wasn't seeing this person as often as I had been. She left some nasty, abusive comments on my blog and stopped speaking to me. After I heard that she had shit-talked me to a few friends, I dropped it and stopped trying to figure out what was bugging her, because it just felt too much like high school--I'm old enough to be the mother of a child in high school, and don't wish to act like one. But I miss her, and I wish we were still friends.
Other friendships have drifted away over the years, not from one party deliberately walking away, but from both of us just letting the other slip away. Some of those people I miss, others not so much. I've never been the kind of person who has a lot of close friends, and many of my personal relationships have been the kind that it is easy to let slip. And yet some of my closest relationships are with people that I rarely see; this year was the first time I have ever spent time with Merouda away from Pennsic, but I love her more dearly than many people in my life.
Rich and Amanda say that they have never walked away from a friendship; they have always been the dumpee. I have been the dumper, once, when I thought it was necessary for my own self-preservation. When I moved away from my hometown it was to save myself from the drunken loser drop-out lifestyle I had fallen into; I hated my high school and was ready to quit (partly because most of my friends were older, and had dropped out of school). Instead I moved away, screened my calls to avoid all my old friends (most notably D, who had been my closest chum) and started a new life. I felt that in order to not give up my future like I felt my friends had done, I had to cut off all contact. It's been seventeen years, and I've only started to talk to D again in the last six months or so.
I've been thinking about the difference between real life relationships and those we establish on the internet. Since I started my weblog last September, I've met a remarkable number of great people all over the world, some of whom I think of as real friends even though I've never met them. Of course, some of those online relationships will carry over into real life; Sandy and Bob are "real" friends now, to both me and Peter, and I'll be having lunch with Carrieoke on Monday. But why do I feel like it's easier to maintain relationships on the internet, when I can't be arsed to send an e-mail to my real life friends as often as I should? Perhaps it's just safer; we don't have to share any more of ourselves than we want to, and it's easier to walk away. Still, I get the sense that some of the people out there that I may never meet in the flesh would not unceremoniously dump me like my "real" friend did.
August 25, 2005
Blue and green should never be seen, except for in the washing machine.
Supper with the printmakers tonight at Thai of Athens. I'm posting this so I can refer to it when I'm mixing up this green for my first litho press run.
August 24, 2005
I'm thinking about maps today, and distances. Specifically, one thousand, two hundred and forty-nine kilometres (776 miles). I'm putting together a little collection of road maps and historical maps from the internet, of the place I left, the place I've arrived in, and the places I passed through in between; now I'm stalled because the papers I want to print them on are in my studio, and I'm at the apartment. Actually, I've been trolling around for maps for a little while, for a book arts project (just a little brain seed right now, I'm just collecting maps and other papers for now and letting ideas ferment a little; it's not a project I'm in any hurry on). But I want to get all my stuff for free, and I've discovered that not too many places give out free road maps that are actually good, not glossy and full of photos of people at amusement parks; I'm wishing I'd held onto some of the more ripped-up maps from the car, but Peter needed them to get home. Of all the states we've driven through this summer, only Tennessee had good free maps. Being the queen of stealing paper, I took a big pile (you should see how many sanitary napkin disposal bags I stole from the U of Windsor bathrooms. I could bring my lunch in those bags every day for the next 3 years and not run out).
So yeah, maps. And distance. And also I'm thinking a lot about measurements of time. About three years, each one divided into three parts. Each third made up of about 120 parts, each of which is an eternity, something to be gotten through. At night, I keep dreaming that I'm waking up in my own bed, that I can hear breathing next to me, that it's my own cat scratching at the door instead of someone else's.
Exactly six weeks from today, I will see Peter.
August 22, 2005
Y'all aren't from around here, are you?
I forgot to tell my border crossing story. So we packed up the van on the 4th, with all my belongings in boxes and the camping gear on top. I had several copies of the deed to our house and Peter's salary letter (no letters from our families, forged or otherwise). I also had a three-page inventory of every single thing in those boxes, which I had spent the last 3 days making, running back and forth between the pile of boxes in the front room and the laptop in the dining room writing things down and numbering all the boxes.
When we got to the immigration office on the American side of the Ambassador Bridge, the place was packed. There were at least twenty people working behind the counter, tripping over each other like the Keystone Kops in a space smaller than my kitchen, and the other side was so congested with travellers who didn't know where they were supposed to go that it was impossible to move. There was a Robert Q van full of Germans heading to the airport, and they all had to have their fingerprints taken before they could cross the border.
Someone took my 1-20 form and made us stand in the bathroom hallway for a while. After about ten minutes, during which time we watched about two dozen people get fingerprinted and one girl (nearly in tears) being told that she could be banned from even entering the US again because she had worked at her job there for four days after her work visa had expired, the lady entering my information into the computer called over to Peter.
Here is how his interrogation went:
Lady (calling across the room): You dropping her off?
Lady: When you coming back?
Peter: Around the 21st or 22nd.
That was it. They didn't ask to see any proof of our ties to Canada. All those copies of the deed are still in my folder. They didn't ask to see my inventory either, and we ended up ripping it up to use for grocery lists later. All that work and worrying was for nothing, and we were heading down the highway with my student visa in less than half an hour from the time we crossed to bridge. I have to admit it was a little disappointing after the stress of getting ready for what I was sure would be a big hassle and interrogation. But it's definitely a disappointment I can handle.
There was one little moment of excitement, though. When the lady asking us the questions called me over to a computer at the counter and asked me to hand over my six American dollars (after paying a hundred in advance just to be allowed to do this paperwork--sheesh), she suddenly looked at her computer screen and yelled "LANE FOUR!" and ran from the room, followed by one or two others while everyone else stayed put. We could see through the window that more than half a dozen officers had surrounded a car sitting at the booth in lane 4. But nothing blew up, nothing was taken from the car and they all came back in laughing. We still have no idea what happened.
August 20, 2005
So I managed to haul my arse in to the studio to do some work and get my mind off the thought of Peter driving down the interstate, farther and farther away from me every minute. Mostly only because I knew he would be disappointed in me if I just stayed home to mope. I did some puttering around in my new space, artfully arranging all my grubby ink cans on the shelves and sorting through the five-inch high stack of journal articles I have to read. Then I dug into the big folder of half-finished prints I brought down with me, all of what was still in my print drawer in Windsor when I graduated. I pulled out one of the Green Lady of Hay Swamp prints to keep (for now) and stapled it onto the wall, then ripped up some truly terrible ones to recycle into new paper and started doing this with the rest:
Don't adjust your monitor. I know it looks like muck. I mixed up a transparent white and rolled it all over the prints with a small brayer to cover them up. I always prefer to work on top of old images, on paper that has a history and that I've already established a relationship with. I hate printing on a new, clean sheet of paper, and have to force myself to print a few of each press run I do on new paper just to keep from running out of surfaces to work on. But I decided that I didn't want to just bring all of my Windsor work here and continue printing on top of all those old images; there's too much baggage in those bright colours, those shreds of knitting and glassy bird eyes. I needed to push them back, into the past. Now they're ghosts, and I can start building new life on top of them. It felt good to cover up all that stuff. Good riddance to bad rubbish, as they say.
Some more things about Athens: it isn't flat. I thought that if I chose the University of Wisconsin-Madison I would wind up with better legs because of all the hills and stair-climbing. How could I have neglected to notice the hills in Athens? After Windsor, Ontario's little pocket of prairieland, I'm not used to all the up and down. Hopefully my calves won't get too big for all my favourite trousers (that's what happened six years ago when I started working out. I've since stopped working on my legs, because they were freaking HUGE).
Speaking of environment-induced body mods: I'm really looking forward to all the weight I'm sure to lose from all this SWEATING. My god. Waiting for the bus this afternoon, I looked down and realized that I had never been this sweaty in my life. Really. I'm not talking armpits and inner thighs and upper lip here; every inch of my skin was sweating. My ankles. My cheeks. The backs of my fingers. All covered with a shiny layer of sweat. And on top of that, big extra beads of sweat in other areas I don't think I've ever sweated from before, like the backs of my wrists. My t-shirt had a six-inch wide band of wetness all the way around under my boobs, and let me assure you that my boobs are nowhere near big enough to sweat like that normally. Is this too much information? Sorry.
Anyway, this place is just that little bit closer to the sun than I'm used to, and I'm not sure I can hack it. Maybe I could get used to the heat if these crazy Southerners didn't crank up the AC so damned high. They just hold their breath and swim from air-conditioned environment to air-conditioned environment. I'm lucky, my roommate Jenny doesn't keep the apartment too cold, not like everyone else here. But still, I'm wearing work socks right now. On what I'm pretty sure was the hottest day of my fucking life.
Those memories of apartment living are starting to come back to me now, and I remember why we bought a house. Someone above us is very thumpy. Actually, that's the only thing really wrong with the place other than the absurdly long hike to the bus stop with no sidewalks. The apartment is lovely, there's lots of light coming in so I don't feel oppressed, Jenny is great and at least one of her cats likes me enough already to follow me around and curl up and go to sleep next to me, although she's not so big on the letting me pet her. The other cat watches me warily and doesn't get too close, which is a pity because she's got the funniest tongue, it's constantly hanging out, and I'm dying to touch it and see if it dries out. Ah well, all in good time, I'm sure she'll warm to me.
Already I miss Peter like crazy. We've been doing nothing with our evenings all week, sitting entwined together on the couch in front of the tv (we don't have one, remember? It's because we're reformed addicts, so when we're in a room with one it's easy for us to get sucked in, for hours) and going to bed early. I skipped knit night to be with him instead, even though I'm dying to meet all the other cool knitty Athens chicks. I figured that could wait one more week. I'm sitting by the phone right now, anxiously waiting for Peter to call. If he stops at a hotel tonight he should call soon. If he decides to push on and drive all the way home tonight it might be much, much later, but I'll be waiting. Already I'm desperately homesick.
August 19, 2005
The first day of school is always the hardest
Okay, that's not really true. The first day of school was easy. I'm all moved into my studio, and I got to meet most of my colleagues in the print department and I think it's going to be a good group to work with. What's going to be hard is tomorrow, after Peter leaves to go back home without me. Luckily I've been too busy running around doing errands and getting to know Athens a little to dwell on it as much as I was before I left home, but tomorrow I'm not going to know what to do with myself. I think I'll probably go in to the studio and do some work, but maybe I'll just park my arse in front of Jenny's telly and feel sorry for myself. Haven't decided yet.
Some things I have learned about this town so far:
-Except for on campus, it's not terribly pedestrian-friendly. There aren't many sidewalks once you get out of downtown. If I wanted to walk home (I might want to, since the last bus to my neighbourhood leaves downtown at 5:45 pm, crazy-early) I would have to go down the Atlanta Highway at least part of the way, because there's a river that there is no other way to get across. And the Atlanta Highway has no sidewalks.
-I can buy tequila, Guinness in bottles (yay!) and a frightening variety of good wines in my local chain grocery store, but I can't get Arabic pita bread (only Greek), and they only have one kind of creamed honey.
-People drive like idiots here. I'm sure once I've experienced my first game day I'll realize that I never knew idiot-driving before, but still. We've sat behind a lot of drivers who go into the left turn lane so timidly that they'd rather sit and wait through another light than assert themselves and pull out. Ontario drivers are far more impatient.
-Athens is kind of like Windsor in that it looks bigger than it really is; on the map it looks like my apartment is way out on the edge of town, a hopeless distance from campus. When you drive it, though, it's not that far. Athens is a lot prettier than Windsor, though, and it smells better. Back home in the heat we've been having I'd be waking up with the stench of Detroit seeping into my bedroom. The campus, of course, is far more beautiful than homely Windsor, but of course Canadian universities don't have the billions of dollars that this school has.
I have a pretty good studio space, and got my hands on a couple of really excellent litho stones; since there seem to be only two of us who do stone litho, I can take what I want. I'm used to being in a place where stones are more scarce, especially good ones. And since Pete keeps telling me to accentuate the positive (every time I get pissy about the labyrinthine campus or not being able to find everything I need), I'll say this: at least the cockroach that was in my studio was dead, and it wasn't the biggest you can see here (although it was far bigger than the ones we get in Canada, like three times bigger). I wish I'd kept it to take a picture; my first enormous Southern roach. Gah.
The thrift stores are definitely better here than in Windsor, and I got some great chairs today that will look great in our old house. In the ongoing quest to replace my special tea mug that the fats so heartlessly broke, I bought this dorky Star Trek mug at the Sally Ann to use in the meantime.
I'm not even all that much into Star Trek, but I thought this was too cheesy to pass up. And look what happened when I put my tea in it:
Such fun, and for twenty-five cents.
This is the first big chunk of time I've been able to spend online since I got here, so if you're waiting for an e-mail from me I promise I'll get to it after Peter leaves, either tomorrow night or Sunday.
August 17, 2005
Thirty years ago today. . .
Thirty years ago yesterday, I was shipped off to Uncle Delmar and Aunt Maxine's farm to stay for a few days while my mom went to the hospital in London to have a baby.
My memory of events that day is hazy. At 3 and a half, I think my reputation as a badass must have been already well established. My cousins and I were pretty much allowed to run around by ourselves on the property, including inside the pig barn. The only thing Uncle Delmar warned me about was not to go out the back door of the barn. Now that I think of it, perhaps my reputation as a badass was actually not all that solidified yet, otherwise he might have just tied me to the tree in the yard instead. Because, hello. Of course as soon as his back was turned I was out that door.
And up past my arse in pig shit.
Now that I think of it, it must not have been all that deep. I was pretty little, and it's not like it went all the way up to my armpits or anything. But in my mind I can see an endless mire of swirling, seething brown muck, bubbles popping on the surface, belching a great piggy stench. Kind of like the quicksand on Gilligan's Island, only stinkier. Since I hadn't brought enough clothes to afford to mess any up, I had to wear my cousin Chris's too-big trousers for the rest of my visit.
Thirty years ago tomorrow, when I finally got to go home, there was a beautiful new baby brother waiting for me. He was sweet-tempered and angelic, not at all crazy or high-strung or belligerent, like someone else we know. I never got to be the centre of attention again (and haven't gotten over it yet, can you tell?).
Happy birthday, Dave. You're one of the best things that has ever happened to me.
August 15, 2005
You'll have to excuse me. . .
I'm not at my best
I've been gone for a week, I've been drunk since I left
And these so-called vacations will soon be my death
I'm so sick from the drink, I need home for a rest.
-Spirit of the West, Home for a Rest
House Redhair, my home away from home. This is the first year that I've only been able to spend one week at Pennsic, and it was hard to say goodbye yesterday morning, especially since this week is when all the action happens. But school starts on Wednesday, and while I'd much rather be sitting around sweating in the heat in medieval costume with my friends, I have to be a grown-up instead. Ugh.
This year was House Redhair's tenth campiversary, and if I can clean them up enough I'll post some pictures later from Whiskey Cellphone Night (where we sample many, many whiskies and then crank call all our friends at home to taunt them for not being there having fun with us. Because we are all twelve years old).
On the night before land grab Pete and I ate at the P.O. Lunch in New Castle, where I did NOT eat fries on my salad. I don't know how we failed to notice the drive through window last year.
Fries on the salad, delivered right to your car. Great.
So Peter and I are in Athens now, while our friends are still having fun at Pennsic. Mardi Gras party is tonight (YES, on Lundi. I don't know why, okay?). Hopefully Thorvald's getting groped, it just isn't a successful party if he doesn't.
I can't be arsed to write too much more for now, too many hours in a steaming hot van on the highway has turned my brain to refried beans. Here's some goodies from last weeks search stats, just so it looks like I have something to say.
totally spies papermaking: I don't really have anything snarky to say about this one, I just think it's funny. If you're an immigration official, I don't know anything about spies.
angora sweater masterbation [sic]: Look, Glen (or Glenda), I offered you some angora last time and you never got back to me. Bugger off.
Pennsylvania masturbation partner: That's illegal in Pennsylvania. Also, I think it makes you legally married.
fat girl painted green: I didn't get that drunk on Whiskey Cellphone Night. And if you're talking about my cat Fat girl, it's a vicious lie, I never painted her. That's mean.
A sign we saw on the way to Athens:
According to the Georgia Welcome Centre, it's okay to hula hoop here. Thank god.
August 04, 2005
All means to attract and distract
So. I'm leaving bright and early tomorrow morning to move to another country. Am I all packed and ready? Hell, no! As if.
I'm sorry I haven't been responding to comments lately like I used to; too crazy. Too busy. Too freaking HOT (our hairdresser is from the Dominican Republic, and guess what she told me? Did you know that it's hotter in Canada than in the Dominican Republic right now? Get me outta here! One more sleep and I'll be chilling in a tent in the Alleghenys, still hot all day but freezing my arse off at night. Can't wait!)
I don't have a finished skirt for you either (deal with it). I did take a picture of it today, but while my tits looked great for a change (bigger than my love handles, and we all know that can only be achieved by clever lighting and tricky camera angles), the skirt looked like crap; the waistband ribbing is too loose and it bulges out. Ah well, around here it seems it wouldn't be a worthwhile project if I could finish it right the first time and have it fit perfectly (I'm dying to know what that's like).
So instead let me distract you with photos; since I'm now using Flickr to host my images, I'm feeling picture-happy. I found a lovely package in the mailbox today, from Jae:
Take Back the Knit! I have an article in the second issue (on top), and there are tons of great patterns; if I didn't have a major deadline I'd be casting on for at least two of them right now. Go here to get your own copy.
I spent today getting haircuts (me and Pete both; his looks better), making photocopies of all my paperwork for crossing the border tomorrow, begging a walk-in-clinic doctor to prescribe me enough of my migraine meds to get me through until Christmas (he did!) and applying for an academic leave of absence with OHIP. Did you know that you're supposed to tell OHIP every time you change your address? She looked in the computer and said, "when did you move to this address? I have here you're in Huron Park". Yikes. Which means that in the thirteen times I've moved in my adult life, I've never let them know. Woops. But anyway, that's done. So hopefully if I have some horrible accident while I'm at school, OHIP will cover whatever the stupid school plan doesn't (the list of what it doesn't cover is ten times as long as what it does cover, and pretty much includes injury resulting from anything you could possibly think of doing). Really, I don't know how all you Americans can live there. A civilised country has free health care, that's all I'm saying.
On the way from OHIP to the yarn store (come on, I had to say goodbye), I found a cicada carapace for my collection.
Yes, that's right, for my collection. I have about twenty of these things, and will likely bring four or five more back from camp next week. I'm planning to make a little curio cabinet to put them all in; won't that be cute?
Here are some of the other dumb things I collect (I told you I was picture-happy today):
Cow creamers. The one on the right I've had since childhood; the other I found secondhand. I love their legs, they remind me of this Lhamassa dude:
From Khorsabad, ca 720 BCE. (yes, I photographed it right out of an old art history book. don't tell.)
More collected crapola:
Scouring pad frogs. What's that? Hell no, I don't dust. Neither do you, shut up!
These ones are hiding. They're a different style that I've never seen before.
I stopped collecting snow domes because it's impossible to find the good ones anymore, the old kind with little plastic 3-d figurines inside. Nowadays they make them with a flat plastic printed picture. I have lots of both kinds, but if you want to send me one, I'm really only looking for the old kind. This one I found last month, brand new, in one of the cheesy fake trading post stores in Cherokee, NC, the tourist trap that time forgot. And they had lots, all the same design; if they had had more than one design, I would have bought them all, of course.
Some time, maybe at Christmas, I'll take pictures of my whole collection and make a web page. Because cyberspace is infinite, so why not fill it up with garbage? Maybe I'll show you my little apron collection too, but for now, those are packed. That'd be one of the precious few things that are packed.
One more, just because:
Pete found this Mr Potato Head hiding under our table at Marathon (the best. Ethiopian food. ever). If he was hoping to catch some table scraps, he picked the wrong people. We ate it all.
August 03, 2005
Gotta get away from this day to day running around
Kirsti is the big winner for correctly guessing that my choice for first ever recipient of the Nobel Prize for rock and roll is Neil Young. It's not because he's Canadian, though, it's because he is the only person who can play a totally rocking guitar solo that is ONE NOTE. Here's what Flea of the Red Hot Chili Peppers has to say about Neil Young (I *think* I got the link from Cornelius).
Kirsti will get a fabulous ass-kicking prize, but we haven't decided quite what it will be yet. But rest assured that it will kick some ass. It will be a glorious one-note guitar solo soaring high above all those middling wankers. Or something like that.
Some of the other suggestions were pretty compelling, particularly David Bowie. But I just want to see Neil get it first.
I don't have the skirt picture I promised. I don't really have any excuse, after all, I've still got a little more than a full day before I move to another country, no big deal. And only forty or so errands and social engagements before I leave. You might get something from me tomorrow, but at this point don't count on it. Hopefully by tomorrow it will already be packed in a box.
I do have one cool thing to show you:
Catherine sent me these awesome stitch markers in the mail. Thanks, Catherine! I love them.
August 02, 2005
Jesus Murphy. What a mess.
So my website has become a greedy little bugger, sucking up the bandwidth like there's not going to be any bandwidth tomorrow. Well, actually, there's not going to be any bandwidth tomorrow, at the rate we've been using it. Y'all have to stop coming here so often! So to save on bandwidth and server space I'm going to be moving a bunch of my blog images to Flickr. Bloglines people, I'm really sorry, but this means that as I move my photos over, my old entries are going to come up as new unless you have your Bloglines set not to notify you of updates to existing posts. Hopefully the inconvenience will be worth it, because it means that my site won't be unavailable for a whole weekend again. I think it's that post about the Jesus statue that started all this, so for now I might just move those pictures over and then wait and see if there's any improvement.
Here's a question: is there any way to stop LiveJournal users from syndicating my weblog on their journal? It bothers me to spend time crafting these fine entries and then see my writing appear in full on another website. I'm not really pissed at the users, just at LiveJournal for making it an option (especially since the images appearing in those posts are still sucking up my bandwidth, that I pay for and am obviously perilously close to running out of).
Okay, on to this Nobel Prize thing. Some of you guys have made some good guesses, and I agree that a lot of those people could be contenders for the prize, but should they be the first ever to receive it? Also, don't forget that the prize is for who can guess the person or group that I would choose as the first recipient, so while I do want to hear who you would pick, you need to think about who I would pick too. I'll give you a hint: nobody has guessed it yet. Remember that Nobel Prizes are given for lifetime achievement, and you have to be alive to get one.
And thanks, Snowball, for tipping me off that I'm now number one on the Google search for Jesus Murphy. That makes me feel better, because I just can't get past number two in the Pittsburgh Salad search.
For those of you who only come here for the knitting, I've got an almost finished skirt here in my lap that I'll be able to show you tomorrow. After that I'm packing away all projects other than Pete's birthday sweater, which I'll be finishing up on vacation next week so that we can photograph it when we get to Athens. It'll soon be making its appearance in an online magazine near you, so I won't be posting the pictures. In the meantime, why don't you all go work on something to submit to Take Back the Knit 3? All the cool kids are doing it. The deadline's August 19, so I'll be hard pressed to find time to put something together for it, but I'll try.
August 01, 2005
Homoerotic dreams, fake contests and a little reminder of the rules
Hi everybody, I'm back. The website was down over the weekend because of some bandwidth problems which I hope to figure out soon. Although I don't think that this alone is what caused me to grossly exceed my bandwidth allotment for July, I'd like to remind readers of what I consider to be proper linking etiquette. If you wish to reproduce one of my photos on your website, please feel free to do so as long as the following conditions are met: do not alter the image in any way; credit me as the photographer and provide a link back to my website; and save the image to your own server or use a free service such as Flickr to host the image so that I am not paying for the bandwidth every time your site is viewed. If you wish to quote from something I have written and comment on it, please link to my website; please do not reproduce my writing in full on another website unless you have obtained written permission from me to do so.
On Friday night, before I found out that my site was down, I composed this blog entry at Peter's mom's house, then hooked the laptop up to her dialup service to discover that I couldn't upload it. So here's the weekend's post, a little late.
It's Civic Holiday weekend, a made-up holiday that's an excuse to have a three-day weekend. Because summer doesn't last very long in Canada, so we need an extra day off. Since it's also my Gramma's birthday weekend, and my Gramma's a total rock star, let's have a made-up contest for a made-up holiday.
So. I want to know your answers to this: if a Nobel Prize for rock and roll were created, who do you think should be the first to receive it? Don't say Phil Spector; while he may have contributed greatly to the development of rock and roll, they don't give the Nobel Prize in Literature to publishers and editors. Who is the Jose Saramago, the Gabriel Garcia Marquez of rock and roll? I want to know who you guys would choose, but I also want to know who you think I would choose; first person to correctly guess my choice will get some kind of amazingly cool prize. Maybe a t-shirt. (Anyone with whom I've already had this conversation is not eligible).
Speaking of rock stars: this morning after the clock radio came on, I was still asleep and hearing the CBC morning show in my dream, and someone was being interviewed (I can't remember any of the conversation now). I was watching a film from the seventies, and the setting was a classroom (not really anything like the institutional green grade school classrooms with large square desks you could keep your stuff in and children's literature lined up along the window ledge that I spent that decade in; more Welcome Back, Kotter-style, with harvest gold walls and those high-school desks with the little arm across). A question was asked, and the questioner stood up from one of the desks; it was one of my (straight male) professors. A certain (straight male) rock star stood up from the desk in front of the Professor and turned to face him. Before answering, the Rock Star bent down (he is much taller than the Professor), took the Professor's face gently in his hands and kissed him, passionately. Thene he answered the question, and the Professor grinned like a goon for the rest of the interview. Like a smitten goon.
And another thing: that Jesus Murphy guy shows up in my search query stats almost every day now. Has anyone ever stopped to wonder if he's related to Murphy the Molar?