Archive for May, 2008

29
May
08

Coming up for air

I am really happy that I’ve had nonstop work for 2-3 weeks (I work at home and am only loosely guided by deadlines, so I don’t ever really get time off, if there’s work, I should be doing it, even now at 9:45 pm.) but boy am I busy! I have spent some time making A.’s first sock (and I see him tomorrow night, so I’m thinking I won’t even be able to finish one by then. Oops! I am getting back into sock knitting slowly but surely, I guess, it must be like riding a bicycle because I have been somewhat able to alter the Manly Socks pattern. (I like that she’s from gorgeous Western Maryland, and I’m certain Chris will like her blog header! Am I right or am I right, or am I right – a movie quote since I can’t get a quote in edgewise in the movie quote game on Ravelry 😦 )

First of all, I wasn’t able to find the yarn I had bought especially for A’s socks, so I am using some Lana Grossa Mellenweit Multiringel that I bought at Stitches West years ago, then I had to use size 2 needles because I don’t have 1 1/2s, so I had to significantly alter the pattern to get the 6 stitch repeat and the right amount of stitches.

So I hope to get some in progress (at least) shots while I’m back in Portland this weekend! And what timing, it turns out that Craft Magazine is having something fun in Portland on Sunday while I’ll be there! I’ll report back on Monday!

23
May
08

Duty calls

Besides the fact that I have no interest in ever knitting a sock again and that I’m busy working on sweaters I have started (and started a new one, for no good reason), duty calls.

The last time I went to Portland, you might remember I bought this yarn:

from Abundant Yarn and Dyeworks.  Well, my friend A. requested hand knit socks from this skein, and as he has accompanied me to yarn stores in 2 states now, I feel I do owe him that.  I have tickets to go back to Portland next weekend (!) but A. has been harassing me for the socks, so I guess it’s time to get started. I wonder if a week and a half is enough time?  Anyway, I was thinking about one of these patterns.  I don’t know of too many men’s sock patterns and I don’t want to do just a stockinette or ribbed sock.  We’ll see which I end up doing.

19
May
08

Can you believe it?

Not only did a truck full of Oreos overturn, but they were Double Stuf Oreos! Ah, to be in Illinois….

15
May
08

I am Iron Man

So last week I was all set to go see Speed Racer when it came out, but I was busy on Friday.  On Sunday I was going to go with my son, but was told that it is like “2 hours watching a strobe light” and since he has epilepsy, we had to skip it.  After that disappoitnment, it really turned me off to the movie as a whole, so I decided to see Iron Man instead.

Today, to get out of the 96 degree heat (and no one here except my Prius-owning friend has air conditioning – way to help the environment ;9 ) I decided to stop by our local theater and see Iron Man.

I had no knowledge of the character, but I was definitely dubious in Robert Downey Jr. being a superhero (is it at all Freudian that I almost typed Anthony Michael Hall? Another guy you wouldn’t have considered a superhero until he bulked up for Edward Scissorhands).  Well, he’s come a long way since “Back to School” and “Weird Science”, and was actually good in this movie!  Another good casting was Jeff Bridges. I hate his roles/acting, so having him as the villain worked quite well for me. I definitely could have done without Gwyneth Paltrow in the love interest/sidekick role, but for the most part I really enjoyed this movie.

I only have one more complaint: this is a very dark colored movie.  How is a knitter supposed to get anything done when you can’t see your knitting at all? 😉

One other thing I enjoyed was the soundtrack.  I liked the classic rock feel, and lack of rap and/or indie music. It was a very nice trip down memory lane.  Also, the best part was the end, RDJ saying “I am Iron Man” and seguing directly into the Black Sabbath song.  Genius!  Give that Sound Designer an award!

14
May
08

So sorry!

I really do have a lot to report, but I have been working myself to death (as a contractor you need to take work when you can get it) and haven’t had any time to take pictures.  But I have had time to knit – last night I officially finished the sweater I showed you last time, and I finished another sweater, but I have to do the finishing (just weaving in ends) which I haven’t gotten to yet.

Remember I had my very lofty Mother’s Day goal?  Well, I ended up losing the couple of scarves I was in the middle of working on, so ultimately I only finished 3 that I had planned to give as gifts.  I gave those away and bought cards for the rest of my mom friends.  That was disappointing, but sweaters got in the way.  Actually, I did finish 2 other scarves, but decided the pattern I was using was really ugly, so I frogged them and am starting over.  The nice thing is that I know I am able to make one scarf with the rest of my Noro Silk Garden scraps, so I’m happy to get those out of the way.

Frankly, my using up my stash project is failing miserably.  I did finish up the Palette I had wanted to in my red/black sweater but I have maybe 3 balls of cream colored Palette to use up as well.  Then I bought a few skeins here and there (pictures to come) from Etsy and my LYS.

Meanwhile, I totally missed the meme that Carrie K was nice enough to tag me on!

1. Pick up the nearest book.
2. Turn to page 123
3. Find the fifth sentence
4. Post the next three sentences.
5. Tag five people and acknowledge who tagged you.

Well, the nearest book is way shorter than 123 pages, so I’ll have to find the nearest book over 123 pages …

Lucky for you my nearest book doesn’t have page numbers, “Allied’s Exam Cram Workbook” (for my ill-fated real estate exam), so I have to choose the book BR borrowed from his coworker and hasn’t cracked open yet, “The Nine”:

“In 1975, as Jeffrey Rosen first reported, he wrote a song about his least favorite Supreme Court opinion, Miranda v. Arizona.  Sung to the tune of “Angels from the Realms of Glory,” it went: “Liberals from the realm of theory should adorn our highest bench / Though to crooks they’re always chary / At police misdeeds they blench.”  The members of the chorus then fell to their knees and sang, “Save Miranda, save Miranda, save it from the Nixon Four.”

And the second meme:

Six Random Things About Me.

1. I hate hot weather (we’re in a heatwave, don’t you know).

2. I like exercising but never get around to it much anymore.

3. I love afternoon tea and brunch.

4. I was a college radio D.J. at two colleges (this was unknown to my most recent group of friends, so I thought maybe you hadn’t heard it either.)

5. I prefer wearing skirts, but since I moved back to CA I wear jeans way more than I’d like.

6. I used to be really into tennis. I even had a subscription to Tennis magazine. This was around the Ivan Lendl era.  I haven’t played in years, but I still have my Tracy Austin tennis racket.

Thank you so much Carrie! I’m going to leave the tagging to the self-tagging realm: if you want to do it, feel free.

03
May
08

Like rabbits…

Not literally, as I’m using wool, but aargh!!!

I was done with my sweater. I had sewn in the ends. I went into my yarn closet looking for 2 buttons, and alas, one more ball of Knit Picks Palette!!!! I was so happy to be done with this sweater and this yarn, and now I’m not. Here’s where I was about 10 min. ago:

I guess the good news is that I can add some to the bottom as I wasn’t convinced it was long enough, and for some reason the ribbing didn’t roll in the neck, but did at the bottom, so I can do some 2 x 2 rib so it won’t roll at the ends.  But I was so proud of myself for finally finishing one of my WIPs (and I’m thisclose to finishing another sweater as well) and now I’m not done.

I won’t get much knitting done tomorrow, either.  We’re finally going to the Maker Faire!  I missed the Yarn Harlot who was there today (which I thought was weird, as MDSW is going on the same weekend and she’s here across the country), but I had a kids’ birthday party to go to during Yarn Harlot time, so we decided to go tomorrow.  I live within walking distance, you know, so it seems dumb that I haven’t been yet, so after tomorrow I will no longer be a MF v*rgi*n.  I tried to get a few photos for you but the traffic was horrendous anywhere near the Faire so I’ll take some inside shots tomorrow.

02
May
08

Productive Meme

After reading this article about how unproductive watching TV is I thought I’d get a handle on just how much reading I need to do to get caught up on my education (although I prefer to read non-fiction, so I’d have a longer list if this was a list of biographies or something). So here is my version of the book meme floating around:

Below are the top 106 books tagged “unread” in Librarything.

The rules:
Bold what you have read, italicize books you’ve started but couldn’t finish, underline those on you read for school.

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Anna Karenina
Crime and Punishment
Catch-22
One Hundred Years of Solitude
Wuthering Heights
The Silmarillion
Life of Pi : a novel
The Name of the Rose
Don Quixote
Moby Dick
Ulysses
Madame Bovary
The Odyssey
Pride and Prejudice (and watched every movie version!)
Jane Eyre
The Tale of Two Cities
The Brothers Karamazov
Guns, Germs, and Steel: the fates of human societies
War and Peace
Vanity Fair
The Time Traveler’s Wife
The Iliad
Emma (read it and watched every single movie version!)
The Blind Assassin
The Kite Runner
Mrs. Dalloway
Great Expectations (another movie I sat through)
American Gods
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
Atlas Shrugged
Reading Lolita in Tehran : a memoir in books
Memoirs of a Geisha
Middlesex
Quicksilver
Wicked : the life and times of the wicked witch of the West
The Canturbury Tales
The Historian : a novel
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Love in the Time of Cholera
Brave New World
The Fountainhead
Foucault’s Pendulum
Middlemarch
Frankenstein
The Count of Monte Cristo
Dracula
A Clockwork Orange (I couldn’t get through the vocabulary in the book but I saw the movie fully.)
Anansi Boys
The Once and Future King
The Grapes of Wrath
The Poisonwood Bible : a novel
1984 (I saw the movie, though, “You know what I liked about the movie? No reading, it only took 2 hours, and then I could take a nap.” – Jim Gaffigan)
Angels & Demons

The Inferno (and Purgatory and Paradise)
The Satanic Verses
Sense and Sensibility
The Picture of Dorian Gray
Mansfield Park
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
To the Lighthouse
Tess of the D’Urbervilles
Oliver Twist
Gulliver’s Travels
Les Misérables
The Corrections
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Dune
The Prince
The Sound and the Fury
Angela’s Ashes : a memoir
The God of Small Things
A People’s History of the United States : 1492-present
Cryptonomicon
Neverwhere
A Confederacy of Dunces (I loved this book!)
A Short History of Nearly Everything
Dubliners
The Unbearable Lightness of Being
Beloved
Slaughterhouse-five
The Scarlet Letter
Eats, Shoots & Leaves
The Mists of Avalon
Oryx and Crake : a novel
Collapse : how societies choose to fail or succeed
Cloud Atlas
The Confusion
Lolita
Persuasion
Northanger Abbey
The Catcher in the Rye
On the Road
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Freakonomics : a rogue economist explores the hidden side of everything
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance : an inquiry into values
The Aeneid
Watership Down
Gravity’s Rainbow
The Hobbit
In Cold Blood (I saw both Capote movies, does that count?)
White Teeth
Treasure Island
David Copperfield
The Three Musketeers

Boy this is pitiful. Maybe I shouldn’t have even done it. Most of these books don’t even interest me enough to want to search them out. Oh well, I guess I’m doomed to spend my time watching TV. However, I am interested in how these books got to be the bottom of the list. All the Jane Austen works? And a lot of English class fodder? Eats, Shoots and Leaves? Very odd. I did want to get credit for having read A Confederacy of Dunces, though, it was very long, but I loved it.




Elspeth

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

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