Archive for April, 2008



I really wanted to go to the movies this week because I’m kind of addicted, and I have a long way to go on my Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool sweater (I’m almost done with my Palette sweater, however, and need to finish the 2nd sleeve on my Classic Elite Venue sweater – leaving me with maybe 1000 WIPs 😉 ).  I can wait patiently until next Friday to see Speed Racer, but because the kids have a half day on Friday, I can’t go see the movie that is so totally me on the day it opens!

(I wish I was fancy enough to put the video straight into this post) 

Yes, it is “Young At Heart”, the movie about the senior citizen chorus that does covers of The Clash, and other unexpected rock songs.  Me, covers? Never.

Well, I guess my sweater will have to wait until Monday when the kids are back in school.


Oops, I did it again.

Isn’t one of the cardinal rules of knitting (after the no sweaters unless you’re married) that you shouldn’t knit in a yarn store? If so, I am a repeat offender. I’ve been knitting at Yarn, Paper Scissors (one of those great knit, crochet, sew, bead and s****book stores) and of course they had a sale so I had to shop. Look what I got on clearance plus 10% off:

This Mondial Oggi is to dye for.  Very soft, shades of grey and black (my favorites) and discounted?  How could I say no? (Their sale is until tomorrow – 30%? off on Tilli Thomas even!)


Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay

Sure, I’ve been busy with work and bringing kids to the doctor this week, but when I heard the new Harold and Kumar movie was coming out on Friday, I had to see it!

On Friday I was driving when I heard a film critic give it 1 1/2 stars. I was disappointed, but I often like stupid movies (except “Nacho Libre”, that one was horrible) so I decided to go anyway.

I really enjoyed the first Harold and Kumar movie. A friend of mine said she wouldn’t like it because she doesn’t do drugs, but I don’t do drugs and I enjoyed both of them. Of course I found the endless references to marijuana a bit tiresome, but I did laugh many times in this movie.

An interesting part of this movie as well was how it dealt with racism and politics. There were a number of outwardly racist events, and either they had the person go against the joke (e.g. the tall African-American man in the South wasn’t in a gang, he was an orthodontist) or they had the person at first go against the joke and then go with the joke (e.g. the two Jewish men who weren’t interested in money at first, but when the government agent, who was the racist in the movie, put money on the table to entice them to talk, they did take the money eventually.)

If you’re looking for a movie where you have to suspend a lot of disbelief, but want to laugh, and/or just liked Harold and Kumar, it’s worth seeing. I enjoyed it.

And I got some knitting done as well, so it was profitable time spent!

As most people hate to have pictureless posts, I’ll leave you with a photo my mom’s friend took in Southern Maryland yesterday (mind you this was in a new housing development in a rural area…)


I can’t help myself…

I saw yet another meme on J.P.’s site, and even though he beat me in number of things done, I still enjoyed filling it out:

Life’s To Do List

(bold what you’ve done)

01. Bought everyone in the bar a drink
02. Swam with wild dolphins
03. Climbed a mountain
04. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. Said ‘I love you’ and meant it
09. Hugged a tree
10. Bungee jumped
11. Visited Paris
12. Watched a lightning storm at sea
13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
14. Seen the Northern Lights
15. Gone to a huge sports game
16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
18. Touched an iceberg
19. Slept under the stars
20. Changed a baby’s diaper
21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. Watched a meteor shower
23. Gotten drunk on champagne
24. Given more than you can afford to charity
25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
27. Had a food fight
28. Bet on a winning horse
29. Asked out a stranger

30. Had a snowball fight
31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can
32. Held a lamb
33. Seen a total eclipse
34. Ridden a roller coaster
35. Hit a home run
36. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
37. Adopted an accent for an entire day
38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
39. Had two hard drives for your computer
40. Visited all 10 provinces
41. Taken care of someone who was drunk
42. Had amazing friends

43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country
44. Watched wild whales
45. Stolen a sign
46. Backpacked in Europe
47. Taken a road-trip
48. Gone rock climbing
49. Midnight walk on the beach
50. Gone sky diving
51. Visited Ireland

52. Been heartbroken longer then you were actually in love
53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger’s table and had a meal with them
54. Visited Japan
55. Milked a cow
56. Alphabetized your cds
57. Pretended to be a superhero
58. Sung karaoke
59. Lounged around in bed all day
60. Posed nude in front of strangers
61. Gone scuba diving
62. Kissed in the rain
63. Played in the mud
64. Played in the rain
65. Gone to a drive-in theater
66. Visited the Great Wall of China
67. Started a business
68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
69. Toured ancient sites
70. Taken a martial arts class
71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight
72. Gotten married
73. Been in a movie
74. Crashed a party
75. Gotten divorced
76. Gone without food for 5 days
77. Made cookies from scratch
78. Won first prize in a costume contest
79. Ridden a gondola in Venice
80. Gotten a tattoo
81. Rafted the Snake River
82. Been on television news programs as an “expert”
83. Got flowers for no reason
84. Performed on stage
85. Been to Las Vegas
86. Recorded music
87. Eaten shark
88. Had a one-night stand
89. Gone to Thailand
90. Bought a house
91. Been in a combat zone
92. Buried one of your parents
93. Been on a cruise ship
94. Spoken more than one language fluently
95. Performed in Rocky Horror.
96. Raised children.
97. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
98. Created and named your own constellation of stars
99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge (I drove over it every day for work, does that count?)
102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn’t stop when you knew someone was looking
103. Had plastic surgery
104. Survived an illness that you shouldn’t have survived
105. Wrote articles for a large publication
106. Lost over 100 pounds
107. Held someone while they were having a flashback
108. Piloted an airplane
109. Petted a stingray
110. Broken someone’s heart
111. Helped an animal give birth
112. Won money on a T.V. game show
113. Broken a bone
114. Gone on an African photo safari
115. Had a body part of yours below the neck pierced
116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
118. Ridden a horse
119. Had major surgery
120. Had a snake as a pet
121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours
123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
124. Visited all 7 continents
125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. Eaten kangaroo meat
127. Eaten sushi
128. Had your picture in the newspaper
129. Changed someone’s mind about something you care deeply about
130. Gone back to school
131. Parasailed
132. Petted a cockroach
133. Eaten fried green tomatoes
134. Read The Iliad – and the Odyssey
135. Selected one “important” author who you missed in school, and read
136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
137. Skipped all your school reunions
138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
139. Been elected to public office
140. Written your own computer language
141. Thought to yourself that you’re living your dream
142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. Built your own PC from parts
144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn’t know you
145. Had a booth at a street fair
146: Dyed your hair
147: Been a DJ
148: Shaved your head
149: Caused a car accident
150: Saved someone’s life


Forgetting Sarah Marshall

Shhh… I went to the movies again. Yes, two days in a row. But Thursday night I realized that Forgetting Sarah Marshall was opening on Friday, and I didn’t have any official plans, so how could I say no?

I didn’t have as many opinions about this movie as I did about “Speed Kings” but mostly because it was entertaining and funny, and I was too distracted by the fact that I showed up the second it was supposed to be shown and they weren’t even at the previews yet! They finally came in about 5-10 min after I sat down and said they were fixing some machine and would be starting it soon. Then we saw maybe 2 trailers before the projector broke again, and we saw maybe 3 previews with only half the screen working (the bottom half) and even the first couple of minutes of the movie! We didn’t get a free pass for another movie or anything (which I think we should have gotten) but they did fix it relatively quickly.

I didn’t realize this in the beginning, but Forgetting Sarah Marshall was written by Jason Segel, the star. I loved him in “Freaks and Geeks”, but never did get into “How I Met Your Mother” so I’ve had to only see him when he’s featured in Judd Apatow films.

Number one warning about this movie – you will come out of it wanting to never see Jason Segel naked again. There are so many nude scenes where you see *everything* that it’s a bit much. There is even the infamous breakup scene where he supposedly shakes his private parts (we don’t see them at that point, but never fear, you don’t miss them later) and there is a sound effect added for them! As someone with a Masters in sound analysis, that’s pretty much even for me.

Mila Kunis was really cute in this movie, and Jason Segel was great. The other actors he chose were good as well. I laughed a lot. However, it was not your traditional Hollywood movie. Jason’s character “finds himself” in Hawaii and we’re subjected to his “rock opera” that he had been trying to make while dating the famous actress Sarah Marshall. The main characters also were pretty strange – Mila Kunis does a lot of things that are either bad acting or bad writing, like not kissing Jason Segel when he tries to kiss her, then sort of looking upset about it after the fact. Is she upset? We’re not really sure.

Anyway, it’s worth watching, just not the most well written film you’ve ever seen.

And you know there was knitting! I brought a different WIP this time: Laura Chau’s Cavern Cardigan, in double stranded Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool.


Speed Kings

I went to see the movie “Speed Kings” today, with Keanu Reeves, Forrest Whittaker, Hugh Laurie, etc. I really liked it. The first interesting thing I noticed is when I usually watch movies alone during a weekday I am surrounded by older couples, or just all older women. One or two housewives, too. Today, all older men. Senior citizens, I mean. Interesting demographic.

Anyway, here are my “official” thoughts on the movie itself:

1) Keanu Reeves gets a bad rap. I get really riled up when I read about what a “horrible actor” he is. Frankly, there are only a few actors/actresses that I think are really, really good. And I will say that when I watch movies and TV, often I can’t get past the idea that these “action heroes” just a few years earlier were dancing and singing around on their high school stages. They’re just actors, people. Do you know anyone that named their baby after Ben Affleck’s character on “Armageddon”? I do. This guy is just an actor, someone you probably dismissed in high school for whatever reason, and now you act like he actually is doing all the things his character is doing?

Give Keanu a break. Sure, he’s no [insert amazing actor here, I can’t think of one, and do not give me Oscar winners – the Oscars are a popularity contest] but he is believeable in an acting role, and that’s all that matters to me. Like I think Kenneth Branagh was any better in “Much Ado About Nothing”. Not a chance.

2) John Corbett sucks. I thought “Northern Exposure” was fine, but never got a hard on (excuse my French) for this guy. Then they put him on “Sex and the City” for a year or so and all of a sudden no one can adore Aidan Quinn because every woman is naming their kid Aidan instead of you, because of his lame character. (BTW, I did like “Sex and the City”. My favorite episode was near the end when Miranda and Steve said they were each other’s the “one”. Cute! And don’t get me started on Chris Noth – now I can suspend my drama school disbelief on this guy.)

3) For a bit during the movie I was really worried, because I stopped watching “House” when he was harassed by a vindictive cop. It seemed like in this movie, Hugh Laurie was playing the part of “Tritter”, but it ended up differently.

4) After “The Shield” and “ER”, I was really sick of Forrest Whittaker’s in your face characters. He didn’t bother me quite so much in this movie.

5) “Disco” – Chris Evans played “Harvard Hottie” in “The Nanny Diaries”, and was even cuter in this movie! Of course pairing him with Keanu didn’t hurt.

6) A lot of violence, natch. I enjoyed it, but I kind of felt like the older guys with me might be thinking that they were ready to be done with this world, since everything is just so uber-violent. No sex, of course, just violence.

Of course there was knitting! Why else would I go to the movies in the middle of the day? I have been on a tear about having so many WIPs, mostly sweaters, that I brought one out of hibernation. I’m also trying to get rid of the yarn I like the least, first, so this sweater is made of whatever Knit Picks Palette I can find, so I can get rid of it. I’m doing a raglan, and recently got past the sleeve part. So far so good.


Every Day is Halloween

You’d think it was October by the amount of “A Haunting” shows I’ve been watching. In HD, no less. A couple of weeks ago there was a marathon of some other haunting show on Discovery, and that’s when I got back into the ghost shows. I think I’ve seen all the “Haunted [a city]” episodes, but for some reason I had only watched one (crappy – no answers and I watched it again last week!) episode of “A Haunting” before my recent obsession. Spooky!

I’ve also been watching “Dexter” and “Dirt” religiously. Can you believe that they just had the “Dirt” season finale? After like 5 episodes? I was questionable at the beginning of the season, but it ended up really nicely, so I was happy to watch the one last night. Although I am a bit wary – it looked too much like it was being wrapped up neatly – I hope it comes back next year!

“Dexter” is as amazing as I thought when I got that free preview weekend of Showtime, and saw the first episode of season two. Now CBS is airing season one, and I’m hooked. And of course I pay for Showtime every month, but I’m still going to be off by one season (unless they re-air season two in the summer, which is possible) when they start up season three on Showtime in the fall. I also haven’t seen any of other Showtime shows I had to have the network for: I haven’t heard anything about “Weeds” or “Californication” but I haven’t gotten into any of the shows they are showing right now. But I digress.

Oh, and after starting season one of “Dexter” on CBS, I read the three books it was based on. I understand why they write on the credits of the show that it is based on only book one. The second book is very disturbing, and the third is just plain weird. I liked the first the best.

I did watch the first “Boston Legal” on its way back and it was okay, not too exciting, and for some reason I missed the new “ER”! But, fear not, I did not miss the first new “The Office” episode in months. It was very very uncomfortable for the first 10 minutes or so, then it got to be so funny! I loved when Michael got fed up with Jan, and turned on the beer sign right in her face during dinner! I really don’t understand why Angela is dating Andy. She obviously hates him. They need to find him a new love interest. Anyway, I can’t wait until Thursday!

One more piece of news: a couple of weeks ago I reached a very traumatic age for a woman. However, I ended up having a nice birthday with dessert with a few friends at Mimi’s, and you will never guess what my friend bought for me:

Yarn! Alpaca, no less!  The story was so sweet – she had meant to stop by the LYS her whole trip up to Idaho, and only found the time in the last few minutes before having to leave for the airport.  Her mom said she could have 1/2 hour and she said she would only need 10 min. She ran in, asked for help, and got this soft, soft yarn just for me! (And flew it back all the way to California!)  What a nice way to ease into nearing middle age!


is a knitter, librarian and pop culture enthusiast in the San Francisco Peninsula. Email me at emmckee@rocketmail

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April 2008