Tuesday, December 30, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining.--Jeff Raskin

I make my living using a computer. This I admit, in the way that a substance abuser might introduce himself at his first 12-step meeting.

My name is Marilyn and I use computers incessantly.

Because I am at heart a born-again Luddite, I will not hesitate to say that both my Dell and my IBM laptops are in danger of being hatcheted.

Due to the twin computers' insouciance today, I will not be bringing you the other Christmas Crapalong pictures AND the picture of the finished Lavold vest. Beelzebub and Beetlejuice are not cooperating, e-mailwise, in letting me publish the pictures.

This will be remedied when I come back from Saratoga Springs next week. Gack.

Lavold-ish Things
Having finished the vest, I decided to get moving on the Ran tunic from the latest book.

In case you are interested, there is a mistake on the chart for this design. The size start indicators for M/XL and S/L were transposed.

This caused me about 2 hours of grief while I cast on, knit the set-up row, counted stitches, ripped out twice, and finally determined that the chart was fucked up. No corrections on Knitting Fever's site; however, Lavold does have a page on her site that lists the four corrections so far for the book.

Knitting directions are notoriously difficult to edit and check, so I think that only four errors is not bad, considering that XRX publications are filled with them. And frankly, the Ran error is probably the most egregious of the four.

If you go through the site, you'll see that she has also done a book on I-cord, available in Swedish only. Can't say that I'm holding my breath for the English translation.

I-cord has its uses but it looks tacky when used as faux cabling or for weird surface design treatments.

In general, I would say that Lavold's directions could be better written for the American audience, who needs their collective hands held at every juncture.

These designs are for the mentally organized knitter, believe me. You don't swatch? You don't count rows? You don't read the directions five times before starting? You never block? Buy some Wool-Ease and make an afghan.

Interestingly, there were two identical questions on the Knit List last week about the Lavold vest back neckband. I actually bothered to answer the first question publicly. Of course, the answer the two KListers sought was right in the directions.

I was overcome with Christmas spirit, what can I say?

Off to Saratoga Springs
This afternoon, I'm trekking to upstate NY to stay with Mitch and Emily, John's friends. He's already there...I had to put in time at work, hence my late departure. So I will be out of range, out of touch, and out and about until I return next Sunday.

This year has been far better for me than last year--I met John and that's truly been the hallmark for me, along with selling the house and moving into my new place.

And thanks to all my Tontant Weaders for reading. You know how much I appreciate you. May you all have a rare and handy 2004.

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
It was the classic mother B.B. gun block: "You'll shoot your eye out." That deadly phrase uttered many times before by hundreds of mothers, was not surmountable by any means known to kiddom.--Ralphie, in Jean Shepherd's Christmas Story

I had a Daisy air rifle.

If you have never seen this movie, do so. It is the essence of every child's Christmas, or should be.

Christmas Crap-Along Winner
Oh yay. The moment you've all been waiting for. Considering I got 4 entries, it was a tough choice. All of them were crappy and all deserve recognition. I'll publish the runners-up after Christmas because time is short and I need a cup of coffee and some rest.

The winner is Carol Sulcoski, for her magnificent rendition of A Thing of Beauty, which, as Carol says, "is a joy forever, especially when it is made entirely of petrochemical byproducts and will sit intact in a landfill for millions of years. Attached is my entry for the Holiday Knit Crap-along. Crappy materials, crappy design (my own), crappy execution. Even a crappy pun, crafted by my beloved (but not crappy) husband."

Truly worthy of publication in a House of White Birches mag. Or perhaps kitted up by Herrschner's. Carol wins the Schaefer merino--CS, send me your address and I will ship it out to you ASAP.

This entry will be short because it's Christmas and we're all fucking busy, no? Hope you all get what you want and may you wallow in whatever it is.

I'm looking forward to cooking for ganze Familie, which includes daughters Corinne and Jenn (and their boyfriends Mike and Norm), Jr. Curmudge Ms. Liz and my grandson Ian, brother Rich and Elly, and last but never least, my Johnny Heartthrob, the Iron Sausage. Achim? WTF was I thinking? John is the real deal.

Be rare and handy, o Tontant Weaders, and have a swell holiday, whatever you celebrate.

Wednesday, December 17, 2003


For fun today, I did a Google using "knitting." Oh man, I came up #10. Holy shit.

Now smack me if I'm just too taken with this concept, OK?
Best Quote I Heard All Day
All men would still really like to own a train set.--Rita Rudner

I can't quite see buying Johnny Heartthrob a train set, although he might appreciate a lathe.

There's always room in my life for a man who loves wood. Wood-and-power-tool-love mitigates the all-encompassing enormity of stash-love.

Why Celebrities Mostly Knit Stupid Stuff
I now understand why celebs can't possibly see their way past garter stitch. My new hypothesis is that their knitting skills are directly related to the amount of plastic surgery they've had. I mean, what else could there be to do but knit while waiting for your plastic surgeon-du-jour consultation? In addition to this, you have to figure that celebrities will be knitting scarves to hide their turkey necks prior to surgery or to hide the bandages after.

Sarah Jessica Parker is featured in Celebrity Scarves and she has had some wonderful plastic surgery. I therefore presume that SJP might be capable of executing a fine stockinette stitch, certainly a step above Daryl Hannah's tortuous attempt at garter. And we all know Daryl's had more than her share of visits to Dr. PeelGood.

I know there's a scientific explanation for the existence of knitting celebrities. I just need more palpable proof.

Christmas Crap-Along
So far, there's been one entry. And a tremendously strong entry at that. The deadline has been extended until December 23 and I will publish the winner's name and entry on Christmas Eve, during a respite from marinating my sauerbraten and eating too much junk.

The prize will definitely be the huge hank of Schaefer merino--nice colors of mauve, sage green, etc. I'd take a picture of it but I'm too busy right now. And if you win, what the fuck do you care anyway? It's a freebie.

Winter Knitty
At the risk of sounding a bit whiny, I have to admit to being disappointed with the winter issue of Knitty. Bland, bland, bland and too many stupid hats, little goofy projects, and uninspiring sweaters. The one project I found interesting was the French Market basket. In Knitty's defense, you get what you don't pay for and free is free. I'm glad we have Knitty, even with the doofus projects.

That said, I actually found the ads to be a good thing and totally unobtrusive. Accepting advertising was a smart move. And the articles are always worth reading. I particularly liked the one in this issue on frogging, although you don't have to wash the ripped yarn--steaming it works just fine. And Rob's definitive article on felting (or should I say "fulling"?) is a classic. The caveat on "free-range" felting alone is worth reading. And the editor in me loves a guy who lists his references. Some of the other articles were way too chatty and too long but at least provided some meat, unlike the commercial hard-copy mags.

Christmas Present
Christmas Eve was a night of song that wrapped itself about you like a shawl.--Bess Streeter Aldrich

And it still is, to me. Lots of things going on lately--I've been busy interviewing at Chubb Corporate HQ in the hopes that I can stay with the company. These are grim days at work, with speculation and rumors running amok.

But there is no doubt in my mind that despite the varying disappointments and pain of the past two years, there has been an overwhelming abundance of good things and people in my life. My old life is gone, the house is sold, the kids are off in their own place. I have a great family, wonderful friends, and my Johnny Heartthrob, who is always there to make me laugh, to make me feel loved, and to be my friend.

It always ends well. And life for me is always rare and handy.

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Holidays are an expensive trial of strength. The only satisfaction comes from survival.—Jonathan Miller

15 days until Christmas.
Presents Bought: 0

I cannot cope with the idea of wrapping the unbought.

Wrapping presents is the ultimate form of torture by paper and is, in my opinion, the second cousin to origami, another fine Oriental art-as-torture.

I was born to create with yarn, not paper.

In my neck of the woods, when someone “scarfs” something up, it means they inhale their food. So I suppose I could use this form instead of “scarves” to describe my scarf-making activities. Two finished, one to make in red and black eyelash for my little punkista grandchild, Lizzy, and another in Touch Me, which is for someone who reads the blog. Liz wants all articles of clothing to be decorated with flames.

Jesus, but scarves are boring. However, the Multidirectional scarf did keep my interest, sort of. Thanks to Judy for the link. Here’s my rendition in Noro:

I put a single crochet edging around it, as suggested by Lisa. I think it stabilizes the garter stitch as well as eliminates the garter bump edge.

And now, back to my regularly scheduled knitting.

Stitch and Motif Maker 3
A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned Carole Wulster’s software for knitters. Well, I got my upgrade to Stitch and Motif Maker 3 and I’ve had a chance to play with it.

Oh boy! What a vast improvement over the original. Finally, a charting program that’s worth having and using. And I am using it. The new features are so plentiful, it would take me way too much space to list them. Suffice it to say that Carole has included pretty much everything needed to make this software easy to use and more important, useful. Here’s a sample chart that I did.

Don’t bother knitting from it because it’s just bullshit symbols. But you can see some of the new features—the ability to draw horizontal and vertical lines (handy if you want to separate motifs visually), a fine array of cable and stitch-action symbols, and a nice selection of general symbols that can be used alone or in combination with the color palette for Fair Isle.

Which brings me to a personal pet peeve—why do magazines and books persist in using only color blocks for Fair Isle charts? I truly dislike them. It’s so much easier for my aging eyes to follow symbols that are assigned color numbers.

But I digress.

What I found most handy was the ability to save the chart directly as a .jpeg or .bmp rather than importing the chart to Paint and then doing the save there. The user can still import to Paint if you want to add a “legend,” which means you can type any damned instructions you wish along with the chart. See what I mean?

Add to all of this the new palette format for the symbols and colors AND a gamma box for selecting custom colors. I haven’t even mentioned some of the other new features. Just take a trip over to Carole’s website and see for yourselves.

It’s so nice to see something useful for knitters, for a change. Give me a tool like this rather than dopey teddy-bear point protectors any day.

Lost in Space
For some stupid reason, the mail from all my Yahoogroups lists, the Knit List, Socknitters, and a few others, bounced while I was away for Thanksgiving weekend. So naturally, I shipped off a reply to the e-mail Yahoo sent me to reactivate.

They didn’t reactivate. So now I get no mail except from Knit U, which I read only sporadically anyway.

I don’t miss any of the lists. I mean, I can still read them from Yahoo, but have I?

Nope. I may be list-less for the first time since 1996. I’ll depend upon you, Tontant Weaders, to let me know if there’s something new or amiss in KnittingListLand.

Christmas Crap-Along
So, what gives? Anyone doing anything? All this big talk about dressing action figures and I have yet to see one submission. Not one fucking thing.

Of course, I haven’t checked my Yahoo e-mail in two days. But still. I can see that I will have to take out my boxing nuns that Sissyboo Karen gave me a few Christmases ago and do something for one of them. Am I going to have to enter my own contest? And worse, win?

Get handy, you knitting ass-sitters and get with the fucking program. I’m not German for nothing, verstehen sie?

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
"There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life."--Frank Zappa

There's snow coming.

If it's yellow, don't eat it.

Cold Shot
There are few things more boring to knit than scarves. I can say that, having pretty much finished AnnMarie’s Fancy scarf, executed in carefully knit garter stitch. Ye Gods.

However, I’m reconsidering my general attitude about scarves, due to the fact that the wind chill factor was 9 degrees Fahrenheit today in downtown Dover, NJ and I froze my face off waiting on the platform for the Hoboken train.

Last weekend, while visiting in Saratoga Springs with John’s friends Mitch and Em, I went with Em to the new yarn shop in town and bought one skein of that Tibetan silk yarn for a scarf. Em’s a knitter and her sister who lives in VT is a weaver, spinner, and knitter. Johnny Heartthrob has some nifty friends, for sure.

I’m thinking that Tibetan silk is not the way to go.

Xmas Crap-Along
I’ve been giving this little contest a bit of thought and I suppose I will have to award a prize. I could give away some of Kathy’s stash that I inherited but I decided that a major award should be something from my own stash. It’s terribly tacky to regift, don’t you think? I will rummage through my stash and see what’s good. There’s plenty of nice sock yarn available. And I believe I have a huge skein of Schaefer merino from a few years back that’s pretty nice, from which someone could make something. I’m willing to give that up. But I’ll make my decision by this weekend and let you know.

So here are MY rules for the Crap-Along. Let’s make it a Xmas Crap-Along, since I’m wallowing in the season’s spirit.

You may knit any item you wish. Nothing is sacred.

Materials: Must be all acrylic or any sleazy fiber you wish to try. No natural fibers.

Theme: You can pick religious or secular, I don’t give a fuck. Those of you fixated with the Jesus concept are welcome to work your knitting magic.

Presentation: You may send me a reasonably sized .jpeg of your project (please keep it to about 200K or 500 pixels, or whatever). You may style the photo as you wish. Extra credit and consideration will be given to those with wild imaginations. No action figures of Janet Reno will be accepted.

Due Date: Get these pictures to me by December 20. That gives you plenty of time to make a mess and still get your Christmas shopping done.

You may enter as many times as you wish, although God knows why you would waste your time doing more than one. And even one entry smacks of excess.

But I bow to my readers’ infinite wisdom and total lack of taste.

Getting It Done
I know, all I do is complain that I have too much to do at work. However, it seems true to me. This week, I have spent two days in Jersey City doing audits. Friday I have to go to North Brunswick. For those of you who do not know New Jersey, these are two cities that won’t appear on your “New Jersey and You—Perfect Together” tourist brochure.

In defense of my home state, just remember that The Scottish Designer Whose Name May Never Be Mentioned Because She Hires Process Servers Weekly based an entire book on Stillwater, New Jersey, which is right down the road from where I live.

In the midst of my work and personal life maelstrom, I have managed to begin the final finishing of the Lavold vest, knit one sock in the left-over Debbie Bliss merino, and eyeballed the Forest Path Stole. And now I’m going to put all of those project aside to knit myself a warm wool scarf and perhaps some gloves. The Isotoners just don’t keep your hands warm.

For Christmas, Liz has asked me for some fingerless gloves in black and red, with “flames” shooting here and there. I’ve gotten the new version of Stitch Motif Maker, so it looks like I will do a bit of charting on the weekend. I’ll let you know how the upgraded version is.

December Bizarro Link Winner
As much as I admire Lisa McNulty’s amazing assortments of links you wouldn’t show your mother, she’s already won. And my new rule is, if you’ve won in 2003, you may not win again until 2004. Which is next month, so big fucking deal, eh? So the winner is: Judy Austin, who sent me a bunch of good links. And I've selected a particular holiday project from one of them. You'll love it.

I already have January’s winner, so don’t send me any submissions, OK? There's a tie for January, so we'll have two swell sites to look at.

And thanks to everyone who submitted. I've just had time to go through them all tonight, so if you haven't heard back from me, you will. Eventually.

And now, because I'm getting a rare and not very handy cold, I'm going to bed.

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
If we don't change direction soon, we'll end up where we're going.--Professor Irwin Corey

And that's the topic of the entry, mostly.

I've been doing a considerable amount of thinking about the blog lately. It occurred to me that I'm boring myself. And that's not good.

I have to admit, over the last year and a half, I've said all I feel like saying about KnitDweebs, Knitter's, the X-men, the Tiny Diva, et al.

After all, what else is there to say about any or all of them? Not much. Until something new and moronic shows up on the scene.

I take my writing seriously. It's something that I've been doing since I was eight years old and I know intuitively when I need to stop. If I have nothing to say, then I don't say it, in person or on the page. That does not mean I intend to cease and desist writing the blog. What it means is that I need to take a different tack. And I'm not yet sure what that is.

My intention, when I first started writing the blog, was to sound off on what irked me in the knitting world. And so I did and have. And didn't much give a shit whether anyone read what I wrote or not. I still feel that way. If I had wanted fame and fortune from knitting, it sure as shit wouldn't have been through this blog, God knows. I would have kissed ass and probably written stupid little articles and designed stupid little garments and worked the magazine editors. But these days, I find myself perhaps more interested in being a solution rather than yapping about the problems. Independent bitch that I am, I will have to figure out exactly how to do that on my own terms.

So what I am saying is this: I will continue to write what I want and if that goes off into another realm, so be it. You may be reading more about what I like and less about what I don't. You may see more of my design work and less crabbing about other people's stuff.

Who knows? Of course, you are always welcome to voice your opinions. I might just listen.

Compute This
I can always get enthusiastic about computer applications, especially those that make my knitting life easier. When Cochenille first came out with their Stitch Painter program, I owned a Mac G4 and was totally enthralled with creating my own charts, some of which I even used.

Alas, the G4 was long ago consigned to some computer landfill place and I was forced to PC myself. So I bought Stitch and Motif Maker, Version 2 from Knitting Software, the company owned by knitter and programmer Carole Wulster. I found it to be not as "robust" a program, as they say in corporate America. To put it mildly, Stitch and Motif Maker lacked a lot of Stitch Painter's versatility.

Version 3 is now out. And finally, here's a charting program to be reckoned with, if the advance info is on the money. I just ordered my upgrade. And I can't wait. Hey, a 50-page Help manual, well-written and concise, is available to read on Carole's site, as is a free downloadable demo. Check it out.

December's Bizarro Link
I'm already getting some submissions from readers, but I'm going to issue a challenge: Find a bizarro link in keeping with the holiday spirit. Be it Christmas, Chanukah, K'waanza (hope I spelled that right). You know what I'm looking for. Or you should.

If you've sent in a link, I'll be checking it out. I may not use it this month. I may not use it at all. But I'll look at it.

Thanksgiving Weekend
Thursday I cook for the family. Friday I'm going with John and his daughter to Saratoga Springs to visit some friends of his. The Lavold vest goes with me and I expect it will be totally finished by Sunday. Hope you all have a good holiday. If you don't live in the US, then it's just another Thursday, isn't it?

A four-day weekend is way too rare but nonetheless handy.

Thursday, November 20, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
I've been trying for some time to develop a lifestyle that doesn't require my presence.--Gary Trudeau

My imaginary lifestyle: Get up at 7 a.m., knit until 9, write until 12, eat lunch, do errands, shop, clean until 3, come home, knit until 6, have dinner and spend the evening with John, watching movie and knitting.

My real lifestyle: Get up at 5 a.m., get to work by 7:30 or so after sitting in traffic for 1-1.5 hours, write P&P, put out technofires, eat lunch at desk, go to boring meeting, get home around 5:30-6, eat some soup, stare at news, knit a few rows, doze off. See John for an hour or two, go to sleep at 10.

Christmas Knitting
Well, I don't. At least, I don't think about it unless specifically asked to make something. It's a cruel thing to award some knitted objet to a friend or relative in lieu of a real gift. Yeah, yeah. I know. Knitted gifts come from the heart. Horseshit.

If I were my friends or relatives, I wouldn't want a swell pair of knitted mittens, beautifully giftwrapped. Gimme a book, a CD, a DVD, some perfume, nice earrings, etc.

Last year, Elly asked me to make her a pair of Cashmerino socks for Christmas. And so I did and she loved them. (Elly refuses to make socks, by the way. Has no interest in them, lets me do it for her.) This year, my friend (and boss), AnnMarie, admired two balls of absolutely gawdawful rayon eyelash that I bought for some bizarre reason at Stitches. So...I am making her a scarf. Here it is. Now you may all laugh.

The scarf is now about 5 feet long and ready for hideous fringing. AnnMarie will love it. She really wanted the Lavold vest, though. I don't think that's gonna happen in her lifetime.

The point is, spare yourself the agony of Christmas knitting horror deadlines and the potential rejection of your precious knitted gift ("Oh, um, how nice") by only knitting when asked.

I can't wait to read all the post-Christmas Knit List messages about how SuzyKnittrForJesus's Aunt Sally opened the gift of the handknitted Dazzleaire tea cosy and said, "Did you get this at Target?"

Blocking Piece by Piece
Since I had to go back and add a few rows to the armhole of one of the Lavold vest fronts, I've been blocking the pieces one at a time, while working on the scarf and the Queen Anne's Lace (yes, I'm back to that). I must say, though, that although I wished I had been able to get Silky Wool when I started the vest, the Debbie Bliss merino is quite nice and blocks out beautifully. For any cabled garment, I like to use blocking wires and cold water spray. Here's the back. Now I just have to block the fixed piece and I can start assembling it and doing the bands.

I really do like finishing. I get enormous satisfaction from assembling something I've knitted and have it look great. So many people knit well and finish poorly. Even so-called designers. Notice some of the lousy finishing in the magazines?

Writing Time, Knitting Time, John Time
It's been a long month and I've been busy but I'm sure looking forward to cooking next Thursday for the family and then having four days off to spend with John, do some knitting, etc. Today I'm working from home. Tomorrow is Friday. Projects continue to build up at work but I miss my writing time very much. The time I spend writing the blog is, along with knitting, one of the most fun things I do. Often it's hard to wedge everything in but I'm grateful that my time is so richly filled and that I am happier than I have been in a long time. There's no doubt that I have been very fortunate to have met John. Finally, a relationship that's working, and working well.

And then there's been all the friends I've made this year through this blog. Other than the two jerks I bounced out, my readers are a rare and handy lot.

Missing in Action
By the way, where the fuck is Knitter's? I went over to the website last week and they're still showing the last issue. Of course, that web site is such a mess, who could find fuck-all? Not that I'm panting to see it, but there is supposed to be another Lavold design therein.

And I've noticed that I've not gotten any mail from any of my Yahoo groups for the past two days. Shall I send dozens of e-mails to each of the lists asking why I haven't gotten any mail?

Time to get rare and handy. There's an Admissions Policy and Procedure Manual, Rev. B that's calling me.

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Don't rule out working with your hands. It does not preclude using your head.--Andy Rooney

And thank God for that.

Party On, Wayne
Far be it from me to bite the hand that feeds me fiber. Kathy brought her unwanteds to my house last Sunday...five garbage bags full. Joe and Lisa and I had lots of fun digging through the goods. Here is my living room floor, bedazzled and bedecked.

Holy shit. My stash as-is equals about this. Well, maybe a bit more but not much. I tend to be pretty project-oriented. Here are some more pictures you can look at: Joe and Kathy expounding. Lisa holding up the one skein no one wanted. I guess Joe was still talking. Heh.

Joe gave me the latest Rowan magazine AND A Yorkshire Fable for a housewarming gift. When I look at the Rowan designs and the ones in the Jamieson books, I know for sure that the American magazines have no fucking excuse for the total excrement they've been publishing of late. Even the easy Rowan designs are elegant.

It's a good thing to get together with your friends. More than anything else, writing this blog has given me the opportunity to meet extraordinary people like these.

Far better than going to some goofy knitting guild that hangs on TKGA's every word.

For some strange reason, I thought this issue was going to be better than the past few. It just bored me to tears. Not that the garments were woofers. They weren't. They were just dull. But it was a $5.95 ennui-filled 10 minutes of reading. The thumb gusset article was mildly interesting. The article on prisoners knitting was also sort of unspellbinding. Unfortunately, I didn't see any potential poster material for Joe that might pander to his fixation with serial killers. In fact, all of the articles rather set the tone of this issue's mediocrity.

I'm getting to the point where I am tremendously more interested in the ads. Blue Sky Alpacas had one of the most arresting ads I've seen in a long time. The web site is the same. It's not that the designs themselves were so incredible. But it shows you what spectacular photography and great art direction can do. And looking at how the Classic Elite ads have gone down the toilet, it makes you wonder. Frankly, the Lion Brand ad is more interesting than CE's.

One company that has been advertising of late in the mags is Fiddlesticks Knitting, a Canadian company owned by Dorothy Siemens that features her lace shawl designs. I'm thinking that if I ever finish the Forest Path Stole, I may go for one of hers. Really nice designs, if you're into lace.

Knitbloggers Knitting Basket Project
Saw this on Joe's blog today--this is a good thing, people. Teresa, Wendy, and Deb (Yentala) have put The Knitbloggers Knitting Basket Project together. I think it's a very appropriate charity, otherwise I wouldn't endorse it.

If you want to do something charitable for the holidays (or any time--do you need an excuse?), check it out. I'm sure you can manage a buck or three.

When I catch up with myself, I may find that I have once again aged two years or so. At least, it seems that way. Work is sucking up a lot of time, as is my relationship with John. Not to mention planning my 2004 e-business stuff. Initially I thought I might do an e-magazine and I still may, down the road. Then I thought about doing a newsletter, also online. But in the end, I felt that keeping it small and manageable was the better part of valor. I've pretty much decided that I will start publishing my designs myself and selling them on the internet. I have not worked out the how's, why's and when's, so don't ask. But I'll keep you posted.

One thing I do know. I will control my product, not some pompous twit who knows dick about publishing and design. And I will not sell the designs from my blog. My blog is my blog. I never intended it to be a commercial venture. Of course, she says with a snort, somebody's gotta pay the fucking cyber bills around here. Domain names cost money, server space costs money. And so it goes.

I'm going to get my butt back into a regular posting mode on the blog. I need time and space to write. And only I can make that time and space.

So it is written, so it shall be done rare and handily.

Friday, November 07, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Mistakes are a part of being human. Appreciate your mistakes for what they are: precious life lessons that can only be learned the hard way. Unless it's a fatal mistake, which, at least, others can learn from.--Al Franken

Fucking up knitting is a state of being that belongs to all.

FO Pas
After all the comments from the last entry, I can't help but agree with some of my readers that fear of fucking up is causing many new knitters to avoid anything more advanced than scarves.

Now, before you get your knickers in a collective twist again, hear this: I completely understand that there are A) beginners who don't just knit scarves; B) beginners who don't just use eyelash; and C) some beginners (and others) who like the hip knitting books.

OK? We don't need to discuss the above again, I think.

I will fully admit that I continue to fuck up my knitting, even after 35 years. It's easy. It happens when I don't pay attention, get complacent, and watch TV while doing a complex pattern. And I have made gigantic fashion faux pas in the past, none of which were photographed. All of them reside in the landfills for which Jersey is so famous.

Some of my more memorable screwups: The infamous aqua acrylic ribbed coat (circa 1975); Jimmy's Aran sweater (Candide pattern), where the sleeves were 4" too long; the vest that had two right fronts (I redid one, needless to say). And lately, on the Lavold vest, forgetting to increase along the left front side edge.

Feel free to confess yours in the Comments. My name is Marilyn and I fuck up my knitting.

Patternworks Fall Catalog
I've read stories about their alleged poor service. I just ordered red rubber markers from them and they came within 4 days. So much for that. But I still can't get over the Falkenberg scarf kit for sale for $170. I'd love to know who plunked down the coins for that.

I'm really hoping that Keepsake Quilting (you must make a trip to their store in Center Harbor, NH, even if you don't quilt) will open up a retail warehouse like the place in Poughkeepsie. P'works is my preferred mail order company and I have gotten the KQ catalog for years too. I'm liking KnitPicks a lot these days, though. With my nutsy schedule, I'm lucky if I can get to The Yarn Loft in Sparta on a Saturday. I'd rather support my local yarn shop than mail order.

Short But Sweet
John's coming over tonight and we're going to watch The Bourne Identity. I'm seeing a lot of him, steadily. Fun guy. So tonight's entry is short. At least I can knit while he's around. He's got an old chenille scarf that oh God help me I suppose I should replace with a Touch Me scarf. Well, even I can be convinced to knit a scarf.

I'll be selling the pattern for $5 a pop. Heh.

Look for pictures Sunday night of my little knitting get-together. Kathy's bringing her stash cast-offs. I will not say publicly how many skeins of Koigu she owns. That's for her to confess.

Let's just say that her Koigu Kollection is, um, hefty.

And handy. And certainly rare, in that quantity.

Tuesday, November 04, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
The most overlooked advantage to owning a computer is that if they foul up there's no law against wacking them around a little.
--Joe Martin

My computer reported me to DYFS for alleged abuse. Of course here in NJ, it's unlikely that a caseworker will be calling...

And now, for the third fucking time...

Celtic Knotwork
I'm quite taken with this little book. With my interest in Aran knitting--my first sweater and first design were both Arans--I'd like to study Celtic knotwork a bit further.

I found this book in Barnes & Noble a few weeks back. Never saw it before. And it's not specifically for knitting. Rather, it guides the reader through the specialized charting needed to create a drawing of knotwork.

Nevertheless, I think it has its applications to knitting, even though at first glance, you might toss it aside as irrelevant.

I've gotten very interested in exploring the differences between Lavold's cable motifs and Barbara Walker's "closed ring" cables (for those who asked, Walker's technique can be found in the 3rd Treasury). I think a combination of the two could result in some very fascinating cabled motifs.

Lavold's cabled motifs are diamond-like, rather than rounded, because she develops her cabling set-up over 3 rows. She begins with two added knit stitches on the first row, works the wrong side as the stitches face the knitter, and then adds two more knit stitches on the 3rd row to complete the 4-stitch cable set-up.

Walker's closed-ring cables are completely developed on the first row. This makes the bottom of the cabled motif circular in shape. It also makes for knitting acrobatics, since you do a lifted inc, then knit in the front, back, and front of the next stitch, and then another lifted inc.

Mind you, I have not done the Walker method yet. But I'm going to mess around with both to see what comes out of them, design-wise. Stay tuned.

Little Shitty Knitty Books
As I mentioned in the Comments the other day, I did get a chance to flip through the Stitch 'n' Bitch book at Borders. Besides thinking it was pretentious as hell (although better written than The Urban Knitter and with a lot more projects), I keep wondering why the fuck do we need ANOTHER beginner's book with projects? Aren't there enough of them out there with scarf patterns?

As far as reference and how-to books, God knows there's a shitload of them. Why would you learn to knit from some trendy grrlll book when you've got old reliables like Maggie Righetti's, Montse Stanley's, or even Vague's? One or all of these books will stand the novice knitter in far better stead, I think.

Let's not re-invent the wheel for the sake of some scant publishing bucks and dubious fame.

Listen Up
I was exceedingly pissed off the other night upon reading the Comments and seeing a disagreement between readers, one of whom got nasty and personal. Her ass is now banned.

I will not tolerate that crap. Ever. If I read it and you wrote it, you can rest assured that I will have your sorry butt offloaded. No questions asked.

If you disagree with someone's views, that's fine. It's not difficult to disagree civilly. I think that discussion and conflicting views make life lively. You can attack the institutions and the public people who run them. God knows I do. Attacking someone who is voicing an opinion on my blog is unacceptable.

Got it? I'm sure you know I will keep order around here. I'm German.

Need I say more?

Bizarro Links
I love my readers. They send me great links. So I think I'll continue the practice of letting you all do the work for me. Keep sending me those bizarre links and I'll pick one for the month. This month's winner (or lose-ar, as my friend Willy would say) is Rob Matyska. His link is so, um, Diva-ish.

Judy Austin sent in an excellent link for those of you who have religious issues with lingerie. I'm saving Judy's other link for another time--it's a scary Japanese cat site that will help us all understand Hello Kitty.

And Denise Satterlund submitted two links, one of which makes me wish I weren't menopausal, so I could do this fun project!

Such rare and handy readers...
Quick Note
After writing two, yes two, entries and losing them both, I'm wondering if it's the new puter. So hang tight...I'll write something later and we'll see what's what. If this publishes successfully, then I know it's a shit happens deal. If not, well it's back to the ThinkPad for blogging.

Friday, October 31, 2003

Damn it, Janet

Now get out that copy of Rocky Horror, ignore the doorbell, eat the kids' candy and knit.

It's a rare and handy holiday. And tomorrow, I'll be back to Abby Normal.

Monday, October 27, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Life is full of loneliness, misery, suffering, and unhappiness - and it's all over much too quickly.
--Woody Allen, "Annie Hall"

La-di-da, la-di-da, la-di-da.

I'm in an Annie Hall frame of mind today.

Around the Lists in 80 Nanoseconds
Mmmm...hot topics abound. Have we read these before? Sure, we have.

On the Knit List:
:: Cat Urine--what to do when the cat pees on your stuff. At the risk of offending cat owners, I'd say either take the cat to the vet because the damned thing has a urinary tract infection OR don't have a cat.

:: Seed v. Moss Stitches--a rose by any other name, eh? Why debate the difference? Well, because some people call Seed stitch Moss stitch, and vicey versey. However, this discussion is worth about 1 second of your time...and mine.

On the Knit U List:
:: Carpal Tunnel--yep, it's rearing its ugly head again. I rather expect that not unlike an infectious disease, it will spread elsewhere. Here's the thing about Carpal Tunnel. A lot of people have it. I have it. I have friends who have it.

There's a ton of info out there on Carpal Tunnel. So shut the fuck up about it already.

On the Socknitters List:
Nothing. Unless you count yet another discussion of the virtues of Kroy, Regia, whatever.

Teeny Tiny Stupid Knitting
It's always comforting to know that someone, somewhere, is knitting something even more bizarre than, say, curricles and tea cups. The Socknitters were gasping with shock and awe over this site, Bug Knits.

I must admit, I have terrible eyesight and perhaps subconsciously I envy this miniaturist. I love miniatures. But I'm not sure that I would be bothered with this shit. If you do dollhouses, you might want a knitted miniature sweater or something.

But I imagine you could decorate your dollhouse without it.

Word Up, Chin Up
I generally don't write too much about other people's blogs, since I do have the wee listie to the left of the page of what I read, when I have the time. But this blog I just have to promote, despite its one-trick-pony scheme. Go read Down with the Chin.

You'll be amused.

And now, it's time to face the rain and drive home to be rare and handy with John. He's partly the reason I've been lax in posting. So bite him. He'd love it.

Tuesday, October 21, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
A stitch in time would have confused Einstein.--Unknown

Yeah, I know. Where the fuck have I been? Well. You want the New York Times version...or three sentences or less?

Here's what I've been doing:

1. Seeing John...a lot
2. Watching the Yankees
3. Working my ass off at TCI

These are in order of importance, of course.

Lavold, C'est La Guerre
OK, I know she's not French. But in response to numerous (well, a few) requests that I show what I'm currently working on, here's the back of the Lavold vest from this past issue of Knitter's.

The back was the easy part. And all the pieces will need to be blocked. I'm a bit concerned about the garter stitch border that then goes directly into reverse stockinette. Methinks that there's not sufficient garter stitch to eliminate the curling. But we'll see.

This is a better shot of the cable motif done on the armhole. The cabling is not that difficult. And the back as a whole is not that difficult.

The fronts require extremely careful counting because you must first short-row while beginning the little cable, then simultaneously decrease for the armhole, work a motif, and decrease for the V-neck. If the decs for the V were, say, every 4th row or so, it would not be a particular chore. But they are like so: [Work dec on next row, work 1 row even; work dec on next row, work 3 rows even] 8 times.

See what I mean? So combining the armhole decs, the chart rows AND these neckline decs into one rational row count is the key. The 28-row chart begins X rows above the armhole bind-off and neckline decs. The chart has to be renumbered so every action, chart or decs, can be identified by a uniform row count.

And it's why the pattern is marked "Advanced."

I wish I had done this vest in Lavold's Silky Wool. Because although the Debbie Bliss Merino is nice, it cannot compare to Lavold's stuff.

Vague Knitting Article
Some people have asked me if I was upset because my blog was not mentioned in the VK Holiday issue article.

Um, no.

Should I be?

And do you think any magazine would put their asses on the line to publicize a blog that actively criticizes them and holds them accountable for their fuck-ups and dreary fashions?

Strictly a rhetorical question, of course.

And now, I'd better do some TCI writing before I get MY ass held accountable.

I get a check twice a month from TCI, just for being rare and handy. And producing, you know?

Sunday, October 12, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Any pitcher who throws at a batter and deliberately tries to hit him is a communist.--Alvin Dark, former baseball coach

Yeah, the Red Sox have a commie pitcher.

Rain postponed the game tonight, which is why I'm writing the blog. It's October, and knitting and watching baseball go hand-in-hand.

I Don't Think, Therefore I Knit...a Scarf
So after all the comments about the Gallery of Ghastlies, I gave the entire philosophy of taste some serious consideration. And the schools of knitting as I see them.

Here's what I believe: There are three main schools of knitting philosophy. The Good. The Bad. The Fugly.

Let's work backwards. The Fugly were well represented in the Gallery and at Stitches East. The Fugly School of Knitting can take a perfectly acceptable, tasteful design and make it into something that Hannibal Lecter wouldn't eat for dinner. It would seem that the Fuglies enjoy taking liberties with Kaffe Fassett's creations. And I would include certain designers who play into the Fugly School, such as the Tiny Diva.

I mean, dressed as Miss America in a knitted pink frou-frou gown, so I hear? Um, that's fugly.

The Bad. Well, I would say that Celebrity Scarves, Daryl Hannah, and every eyelash yarn on the market epitomize this school. The Bad School of Knitting members never learn how to do anything beyond constant garter stitch, using same to make long novelty scarves and garter stitch warshcloths. And aren't much interested in going past garter stitch. Except in recent months, with the publication of Melville's garter stitch extravaganza. In fact, the single most popular garment made by most members of the Bad School of Knitting is probably the Einstein Coat.

The Good. The members who subscribe to this school are generally serious about learning what they can, eschew novelty yarns, and may or may not be traditionalists, insofar as they learn all the traditional techniques and stitch patterns. Mostly, they're fearless knitters who are itching to try something new.

So what's worse? The Bad? or the Fugly? I'd have a hard time choosing.

One thing I do know. The Bad and the Fugly will never go away. There will always be people who think that garter stitch swing jackets are the height of fashion and knitting expertise. Too bad because they'll never know what they're missing.

Have I ever made a Fugly garment? You bet. In 1974, when I had no money, I made a ribbed coat from acrylic. In aqua. It was supposed to have been done in Donegal Tweed. I didn't have the money, but I wanted to make the coat.

I never wore it. It was fugly. And I knew it was going to be fugly all the while I knit it.

The lesson was well learned. Never did that again. I saved for the good stuff.

Vague Knitting Holiday Issue
Saw it online. What a dog. Enough said.

IK Winter Issue
Saw the garments at Stitches. This looks to be a good issue. I'm not sure when it's due out but based on what I saw, it would seem that IK is rising from the ashes a bit.

Well, gang, it's been a long week. Still unpacking books, although the Wall of Knitting Shit is almost done. The magazine collection alone is scary. And I don't have complete sets of everything. However, I keep finding more boxes of magazines and patterns.

It's so rare and handy to find a Vogue Knitting issue from 1968.

Sunday, October 05, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
I base my fashion taste on what doesn't itch.
--Gilda Radner

For the past two days, I've seen garments the likes of which would give any sane person the hives.

Lock and load, baby.

Stitches East Revue
I'm back. And here it is, in all its glory...

The AC Convention Center is a vast improvement over the Valley Forge septic tank.

Driving three hours from Allamuchy to AC was not half bad. And Elly and I continued our ritual of having coffee and bagels first while reviewing the vendors and their booth placement before we hit the show.

Elly lasted about two and a half hours on Friday. She bought what she wanted and then she wanted to leave. So I went back on Saturday to finish what I started. A buyathon. And seeing more friends.

I have another picture of Elly with her mouth full but she threatened me with a spanking if I published it.

First, we had to meet Kathy and Carol S. at the Simply Knit booth. And of course, QueerJoe, who showed off his Weavette, full of gadgety goodness, as Lisa might say.

Then Kathy and Carol S. showed up and off we went shopping. What more can I say? Here's Kathy in one of her Koigu leftover crocheted jackets.

By and large, this was an excellent show. It was great to see old friends, and meet some new ones.

From left, it's Lisa, Kathy, and Donna, who recognized me from some picture of myself that I must have put up on the blog. Donna doesn't post to the Comments, but she will now, won't she? Wish I could have met more of my Tontant Weaders...but I prefer to do these shows dressed as Lili von Schtupp so that I will not be recognized.

Although Kathy is insistent that I am far more well known that I wish to be. Shit, I hope not. I'm a shy person. Really.

The Best Part
No, I'm not going to list all the things I bought. Much of the stuff I did buy was raw materials for future design projects.

But. There were a shitload of fucking ugly garments there, kids. I shit you not. If I could have found the person wearing the knitted purple dress complete with applied rick-rack, I would have. This vision was rumored to have been a guy awaiting a sex-change operation. Never saw him.

However, I bring you The Gallery of Ghastlies. A photographic tour of some of the most plug-ugly knitted things I have seen in a long time.

Is it a coincidence that many of these garments are intarsia? Is that why I don't do intarsia? No. But it's astonishing how easily people can crap up even a Kaffe Fassett design. Mary Maxim, eat your heart out.

You'll see.

So, enough of my self-indulgence with the digital camera.

It was fun. It was rare. It was handy.

I'm beat.

Wednesday, October 01, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Most women are introspective: "Am I in love? Am I emotionally and creatively fulfilled?" Most men are outrospective: "Did my team win? How's my car?"--Rita Rudner

I must be inwardly outrospective. I've asked myself all those questions at one time or another, some of them in the past two weeks.

Yes, the Neon has trans "issues."

Go Yanks. That's all I have to say about that. It's October and it's baseball, so bite me. There's more than just Stitches going on in my life right now.

You know, for a beginner's mag, this is really the best one. I don't know why I keep buying it but it usually has one design that I would almost consider making.

Knitter's, IK, and Vague should leave the beginner shit to Easy Knitting, who does it ever so much better.

Jamieson's 3
I don't think this was as strong an issue as the first two. Nonetheless, it's far and away a better investment than any other book I've seen recently.

Frankly, I'm tired of modular garter stitch shit and there was one of them there types in J3. But two spectacular Fair Isles (not as many colors as I like but still striking), a nice lace shawl, and some cabled affairs were enough to balance out the so-so.

And two day/night pullovers worked in 3 strands of the Jamieson Spindrift that blew my mind. The 3 strands are worked ABB, BCC, etc. so that there is a subtle shading that is incredible. Add to that a nifty Guernsey-style patterning and these two sweaters justify the price of the book, in my opinion. Buy it, you'll like it.

On the Boardwalk
I have my digital camera ready for Friday because oooh baby baby it's time for Stitches Market. Fuck the classes. Anyone wanna make book on whether the XMen confiscate my camera and throw me out on my ass?

There will be a meeting of the Faithful at the Simply Knit booth on Friday at 11 a.m. QueerJoe, Kathy, Carol S. and me and whoever else shows up. Oh, and I'm bringing Elly with me. She has her list. I have mine. I promise you I will do a montage of scary photos and post on Saturday or Sunday.

New Musica
This entry's pick is The Dixie Chicks. I like them--good voices, excellent musicianship. This song, Cowboy Take Me Away, and all that I choose for the blog always reflect how I'm feeling when I write. Writing is music to me...Cowboy, take me away. Yes.

Sorry I had to take down the Emmylou Harris but seriously, even I was getting sick of hearing it.

By the way, Bette Midler has just released a Rosemary Clooney songbook CD. Come on-a My House. Great song. And Sisters, from White Christmas. My sissyboo Karen and I sing that one together on occasion. But not for public consumption.

Karen's husband Jim also contributed this month's Bizarro Link. Just so you know. He's a bon vivant raconteur and man-about-the-saltwater-tank. I just talked to him immediately after he was stung by his pet sea urchin. Our whole family is rare and handy.

New and Improved
For those of you who follow my adventures, here's the latest. Seeing a new guy. Very cute, very sexy, very smart. Very into the same things I am. No, he does not knit. Yes, he has read the blog. Yes, I've met my match, trust me. I like him lots.

As Colin Quinn says, "That's my story and I'm sticking to it." Don't ask me anything else. All will be revealed in time, O nosy ones.

I don't let any grass grow under my fucking feet.

It's my way of being rare and handy, dontcha know?

Friday, September 26, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
The IQ and the life expectancy of the average American recently passed each other going in opposite directions. --George Carlin

Take a week off, get 2,321 messages from Knitting Nirvana aka the Lists, and...

La plus ca change, etc.

Monday from 9-10 won. Monday from 8-9 came in second. I'll be there at 9 next Monday. The rest of you do what you like.

An hour a week is about all I could stand of any chatroom, let alone my own.

Celebrity Scarfs
Which is what the book should be called, in recognition of the combined knitting acumen and cerebella contained therein. As a devoted skimmer of People, I noted in this week's issue a mention of said book. So I guess "scarfs" aren't out with the Hollywood knitistes.

I wish knitting would fade back into the shadows of craftdom, from whence it came. There's just too many fucking people doing it these days, and doing it badly.

Far From The Wadding Crowd
Egad, but Knit U has had some really inane posts this week. I must confess that it's been my main source of yuks during my personal week of moving hell.

What is wadding, indeed. What the fuck do you think it is?

And armscye. Someone on Knit U made the moronic observation that "...it seems the term has crept quietly into knitting and crochet, because 'armhole' was too clear and straightforward."

Um, no. Those people who sew as well as knit know that armscye is the correct term. And, I might add, those knitters who also sew understand knitted garment construction far better than those who do not sew.

The best (and the only) craft class I've ever taken was the old "Stretch and Sew" course, where you really learned how to deal with knit fabric. Much of what I learned I use still in my designing and my finishing.

Sweaters are garments. Or they used to be.

La Musica del Mar
A reader, Martini, sent me an e-mail asking me what my music playlist would be. Besides Benoit Bourque--just kidding, that's Kathy's gig, not mine--I think that my playlist would just go on forever.

I love to dance. So if I can dance to it, no matter who the artist, it goes on the playlist. But here's some of my favorite songs and artists, not necessarily danceable. Some make me cry. Some make me drive too fast. All of them I love. I only knit to classical music, by the way.

Dimming of the Day--Bonnie Raitt
Louie, Louie--The Kingsmen
Start Me Up--The Stones
Let It Roll--Little Feat
Pride and Joy--Stevie Ray Vaughn
What I Like About You--The Romantics
She Drives Me Crazy--Fine Young Cannibals
Magic Bus--The Who
Hold On--Sam and Dave
Sweet Home Alabama--Lynyrd Skynyrd
Sweet Jane--Lou Reed
Freefallin'--Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers
Are You Gonna Go My Way--Lenny Kravitz

And you're listening to my favorite Emmylou Harris song, as promised.

That's just a drop in the bucket. And Stairway to Heaven is not my favorite song. I don't know why it's always #1 on every radio station's Top 100 of All Time lists.

In Allamuchy
I'm ensconced. Unpacking stuff. And finally got to sit down and knit tonight for a few minutes on the Forest Path Stole. I'm on Tier 10 still. But it was good to have a quiet time, amidst the chaos.

But I thrive on chaos. I like to make order from it. And keep moving on.

You can't be rare and handy if you fall asleep at the wheel, that's for sure.

Thursday, September 18, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
I was gambling in Havana
I took a little risk
Send lawyers, guns and money
Dad, get me out of this
--Warren Zevon, "Lawyers, Guns and Money"

Got to give WZ his tribute...and after today, dealing with my attorney, I'll be bringing the money AND the Uzi to the closings on Monday. Emmylou will be next, promise.

This is my favorite of Zevon's songs. This, and Excitable Boy. Dick, I give it 10 because you can dance to it, too.

Kat Knitting
Enough with the fucking cats on these lists. Kath put her neck out on the KList and threatened them with Benoit Bourque. It was a brilliant post and despite the one cry of outrage by some Texan woman, who apparently makes doggie sweaters and flogs them on the internet, shut them all up better, I think, than the List Moms.

I'd take that threat very seriously.

I like cats. Remember the late, great Milo? But jeez Louise, cats belong where they belong. Right up there with Benoit Bourque.

By the way, I felt it was time to publish the TCI Home Office Operations group's unofficial picture. I want it on a T-shirt. I should send it to any list whose thread is tiresome, in lieu of a post.

I gave this framed to my last boss, Mark, when he left us for AIG. He keeps it in his desk drawer and looks at it in fond remembrance.

I like to share.

Knitty's 1st Anniversary
I wish I had more time to design and write for Knitty. It just keeps getting better and this issue is truly the most professional so far. Lots of good ways to use Noro.

And the guitar strap was inspired. Shit, it's far better than knitting a scarf. Although I was impressed with the Koigu-ruffled scarf, even though I have about as much use for scarves as for warshcloths.

What really blew me away was the Mrs. Hoover baby blanket. Not the design, it's feh. But I appreciate the historical research done by Kristi Porter. That is extremely interesting.

So good to say something good about a knitting magazine. Knitty is going places. Let's hope that Amy never loses her editorial focus, with the yarn companies courting her.

We've seen that happen before elsewhere, haven't we?

Be Gay...Be Very Gay
QueerJoe's contest is over. I selected the winner and I believe Joe will publish it tomorrow. All very strong entries, all very good. I enjoyed playing editor again.

So? I need your "input." Your "feedback."

I need your opinion as to time is designated for the Chat-o-Rama. Tell you what. I'll do another poll. I'll pick a bunch of days and times and you may vote. The poll will run for a week.

I want to include our overseas friends, specifically my Ozmates. And anyone else not of this time zone. But I need it to be in the evening, Eastern Standard Time.

And I am the Napoleonora of this blog. Everyone in unison: Bite me.

Thank you, I will.

Shufflin' Off
This will be the last entry in the house. Monday I'm in Allamuchy. I can't wait. I will not post until Tuesday next, at the earliest.

As Jen Tocker says, the computer will be the first thing set up. She's right. But I've got my FPS and the Queen Anne's Lace at my side, ready for stress relief.

I learned to be truly handy by hanging up the carbon monoxide monitor. It's a half-assed job but it passed the fire inspector's eagle eye.

Maybe I'm just rare.

Sunday, September 14, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Music is the only language in which you cannot say a mean or sarcastic thing. --John Erskine

Do you hear Bonnie Raitt? I modified my code so that all browsers can pick up the sound clips I play. Let me know if you can't hear it. Of course, make sure you have speakers and that the sound is on. I don't need to say that.

Don't like Bonnie? Don't like music? Just wait...I found a shitload of favorites last night: Emmy Lou Harris, Dixie Chicks, Patsy Cline, just for starters. And I like lots of different kinds of music.

This song is one of my favorites. Live with it. I think it's sexy as hell.

Poll Results
Well, that was an interesting experiment in human nature. Who among us can resist answering a poll? Or taking a stupid online personality test?

So here are the final results.

118 votes total
1. Yeah, why the fuck not? 40% 47 votes
2. No. What, are you nuts? 16% 19 votes
3. You talkin' to me? 13% 15 votes
4. Only if KnitDweebs are banned. 19% 22 votes
5. Only if you promise to remove the poll and its annoying popups 13% 15 votes

Since I manage all the electronic surveys at TCI, this smacks a little too much of work.

However, if you go to Talking Heads in the nav menu up top, you'll find the room. Read the rules. Don't ask me anything in the Comments. I presume you all read to a 9th grade level. I will take suggestions for a set time. Let's remember that we don't all live on the US East Coast, OK?

I may live to regret this.

Another Simple, Stupid Acronym
Make of that what you will.

Do I have nothing better to do at 7 a.m. on a Sunday than read the Knit U list?

Pure D habit, and I needed to clean out my mail folders.

Here's a new one, for those who are knitting acronym collectors. If I didn't think the X-Men would sue me for stealing their proprietary material that they steal from their list members, I'd print the whole post verbatim. It's a gem.

Which stands for "Stash Accrual Beyond Life Expectancy."

I expect this to take off. Look for it in the next issue of Knitter's. And on a LIKLY. That's a Local Idiotic Knit List near You.

I'm leaving my stash to Loopy, Joe, and Kathy. That's all there is to it. They'll just have to fight over it. But Loop can have all my Campion. Unless Michael wishes to learn how to knit. Which I doubt. He'd have to teach me how to play steel guitar. Which I doubt.

Time's getting short, campers. I have a mere 8 days to moving, which is why I'm writing this so fucking early in the morning. I will try to post one more time on Thursday but after that, it's anyone's guess. There will probably be close to a week's gap thereafter.

Just so you know.

La Contesta del Jose
This is the last day you can enter QueerJoe's Blogathon writing contest, so enter early and often. I expect it will be tough for me to select the winner but I will give all entries my gimlet editorial eye and I'm looking forward to it.

Plenty of rare and handy writers floating around the ether.

Thursday, September 11, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
While we have the gift of life, it seems to me that the only tragedy is to allow part of us to die - whether it is our spirit, our creativity, or our glorious uniqueness.
--Gilda Radner

I should be busy polishing up my presentation for tomorrow's National Operations meeting in NYC. I will. It's important. But not as important as some other things.

Loss is a powerful thing. It can permeate your life forever. Losing your job, losing your health, losing a loved one.

I was going to avoid thinking about the 2nd anniversary of 9/11. The loss of so many and the loss to so many only reminds me of my own personal losses during the past two years: a job that was lost directly because of 9/11; a husband lost 3 months later to a violent disease that neither of us could battle; the loss of a man who made me believe I could love again and then vanished from my life without a trace; and finally, the loss of my house, the house that I was going to stay in for the rest of my life with Jim.

I think that 9/11 has made us all more fearful of loss and less confident in life. I know that I fight those feelings every day because life cannot be ruled by loss.

It seems a trivial thing, knitting. After all, what is it but some needles and yarn? A trivial pursuit, if you will, in the scheme of life. Yet it has helped me focus time and time again, taking me away from my worries and troubles, and restoring my sense of accomplishment and optimism.

While packing up all my yarn and books and needles and knitting accoutrements the other week, I found the sweater I was working on in the hospital the day Jim died. I will never finish it, most likely. It belongs to the past and my old life. But I'll keep the pieces as a remembrance and go on to new projects.

Sometimes the pain of loss can blossom into a whole new flower.

As we used to say in the '60s, peace.


Sunday, September 07, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
You can't have everything. Where would you put it?
--Steven Wright

One month to Stitches East. U-Haul stock is bound to go up.

I love the list threads. They prompt sarcastic e-mail exchanges between me and Loopy. Frankly, the two of us were KnitFlaming long before the KF list existed. Like since 1997.

So I'll share my stoopid pick du jour. Here's one that I just sent her, from the Knit List.

I just checked the Addis I am knitting with now and it is the mm size that is stamped on them, not the US size. Do you have a metal knitchek with the different size holes on it for every size needle. Double check the size with that.

Um, yes, I do. Would you like to cyber-borrow it? And I'm afraid you'll just have to figure out the difference between a #15 and a #17 on your own.

I hope that I personally thanked each one of the people who responded to my question about using a dishcloth pattern to make a baby afghan.

Now why didn't I think of that? Take a warshcloth "pattern" and make it into an afghan? Now I've got a whole new use for my "Bite Me" chart.

Those are just two from this morning's crop.

Weird Knitting
The thread on knitting in weird places seems to have a sub-life of its own and will not die.

In 1975, when I was a psychiatric technician, I knit every night on Ward 35, the maximum security area for homicidal and suicidal women at The Essex County Hospital Center.

I think that kind of tops knitting at the local horse show.

Fiber Toys
I'm taking a cue from QueerJoe's entry on Thursday about fiber toys and related ephemera. Personally, I've not found many that are particularly useful or worth the money.

I expect we'll see a shitload of them at Stitches, as usual. I'm really tempted, as I said in the last entry's Comments, to market bogus products and see how many KnitDweebs will bite.

I'll repeat the two products mentioned in the Comments:

ShaftSoClean...just dip and your needles will sparkle like new! Works great on nickel-plated, aluminum, or Teflon-coated needles.

And for you bamboo or wood needle aficionados, try WoodenEweWashIt. Specially formulated to restore the natural patina of all cellulose-based needles. It'll make your wood stand out!

Add these:

Got CTS? Give it a rest with KnitRHelpR! Made from the finest Taiwanese plastic, KnitRHelpR is a convenient third hand, engineered to hold your needle when the pain gets too intense. All KnitRHelpRs are made from recycled mannikins. We support the environment!

Lacy Lifelines keep your lace knitting in check! These thin waxed threads, scented with a hint of mint, can be run with your knitting so that you'll never have to worry about frogging your yarn-overs again! Each package holds pre-cut Lifelines in lengths of 24", 48" and 60". Just $11.95 for a pack of 12 Lifelines.

Hardworking knitters' hands need a real hand job! Creme a Tricoter, created from a protein-based formula, will soothe those aching joints immediately. Complete satisfaction guaranteed! Warning: You may become drowsy after use.

OK, that's enough of that. (Although I did like Carol S's comment from the last entry: Knitted Condoms, ribbed for her pleasure.)

Better get my ass in gear. More packing to do. Two weeks to go and I'm knee-deep in shit. Somehow, I seem to be able to do my job at TCI, deal with moving, and write this blog.

Moving is so unrare and so fucking unhandy. I'll stop whining now. Maybe.

Thursday, September 04, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
That would be a good thing for them to cut on my tombstone:
Wherever she went, including here, it was against her better judgment.
--Dorothy Parker

I thought it was time for another DP quote, Tontant Weaders.

Beverly Hillbillies Knitting
Was it my imagination, or did I see Granny knitting in her rocker? Maybe it was Jethro. My eyes aren't so hot.

Will someone please explain to me why it is so thrilling to see someone knit on TV, knit in the movies, knitting anywhere?

One of my favorite authors is Ruth Rendell, who writes dark, psychological novels. In virtually every book, knitting is mentioned.

So what? Outside of one book, where the murder weapon of choice was a pair of circular needles, knitting does not play an integral part in her plot developments.

I guess if you don't have a life, a mere mention or cinematic sighting of knitting is enough to stir up the blood.

Knitter's Sighting
Heh. Gotcha. Maybe.

But I did see the magazine at Elly's this afternoon after work. Well. It's not hideous, despite their persistent use of bilious green in a few of the designs.

The Elsebeth Lavold vest is even better than I thought. Oddly, it's worked in Debbie Bliss Merino, rather than in one of Lavold's yarns. I'm hoping to see her new line at Stitches East, if I'm not blinded by the cataclysmic shine of all the glitzy-shit yarns I'm afraid will be prominent again this year.

Unfortunately, there seems to be an article on Lavold written by the X-Man himself, Alexis. And here I thought he'd given up the pen for the lens. Didn't have time to read it. But then, who does have time to wade through anything he writes?

Those Smart-Heel socks the SK gang keeps raving about? I can't find a better synonym than hideous to describe them. [Ed. Note: See my correction re: title in Comments. Better yet, see the Knit U correction to yet another mistake in their directions--they're wrong...again.]

Sorry, but that heel looks like it would only fit SpongeBob. Or possibly Squidward. Smart it ain't if it don't fit. But I'll read the directions anyway and see just how fucking smart it is.

Stitches East Warshcloth
OK, so I decided I would knit myself a little pink warshcloth and pin it to one of my ample bazooms for Stitches, just in case there's a KnitDweeb lurking near The Mannings booth with an Uzi, waiting to take me down.

So rather than continue to struggle with my Excel pivot chart and a V-Lookup that wouldn't look up this afternoon at work, I decided that it was time to chart out the petite warshcloth.

I figure, worked at 7 spi in sock yarn, this would make about a 4" wide (with edging) warshcloth suitable for pinning. Perhaps if I knit two of them, I can wear them as pasties and out Chin the Tiny Diva for pure trashy nonstyle.

Of course, I'll knit enough rows to make it 4" high and include garter edging on all sides. Don't know how this will work in actual knitting, since the graph is itself not proportional. I'll let you know. Aw shit, I just realized this will needs be done as intarsia. Fuck me.

And yes, the #25 column is missing its pink color. I really do not like Stitch Motif Maker. Doesn't do a fill. I'm going back to Stitch Painter, a much more "robust" app. (That's another word I hate, "robust." They use it all over TCI, why I do not know.)

QueerJoe's Blog-o-rama
Now listen up. I guess I have to say this again, since I want to make sure you heard me the first time.

QueerJoe is running this fucking contest wherein you write a guest blog and I get to judge the entries anonymously. And he's actually giving away enough yarn for a sweater if you win.

Which is more than you'll ever get from me. I don't do prizes. But he does, and he's already receiving entries from far and wide. Well, three. But one's from Australia, I understand.

So write something for him. Fame is yours, plus some yarn. All you have to do is get past me. Heh heh.

And now, since the phone is ringing, I must leave you to your rare and handy selves. Try to play nice in the Comments, OK? Not you, Michael. You can play as nasty as you like.

Monday, September 01, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
The older I grow the more I distrust the familiar doctrine that age brings wisdom.
--H. L. Mencken

And you thought that The Knitting Guild of America was the only not-for-profit organization that could attract KnitDweebs like flies on shit?

Nah. Now they're discussing The Red Hat Society .

It's the cute poem, the daring purple-and-red combo, and, of course, paying $35 to a group that offers nothing in return. And of course, the opportunity to wear Queen Mum hats.

Why do some women wear hats that they shouldn't? The corollary to that is: Why do some women wear sweaters that they shouldn't? It's all of a piece, I suppose.

And The Winner IS...
Lisa McNulty, for her submission, Divine Interventions. Please click on September's Bizarro link. And if you're a priss, a prude, or a Jesus shouter, just leave, OK?

Second Place goes to Regina, for her unforgettable link to the best menswear page I've seen in an age. Of course, it's German. Of course.

Third Place goes to Cheryl, for Klein Bottles, a link that contains actual knitting content. Check out the matching hats.

All the submissions were excellent. And yes, I did look at all of them. In fact, they were so good I had a real problem deciding the winner.

So I picked three and asked my excellent partner-in-crime, Michael, to pick the winner. Lisa's was the one I was leaning toward--and that's the one he picked.

I think I will put all of the links on a page and let you all look at them. But that's for the next time. Too lazy to do it today.

Tiny Diva on BBC Radio
Did you miss it? I mean, how could you? She only posted about it twice to Knit U. Hey, she was going to discuss her Guiness Book record! Again.

Well, when I bothered to remember last night, while doing my online studying for financial aid adminstrator (yet another fun work thing to do in my spare time), the link was dead.

But I managed to find it in the archives. Unfortunately, I also found a far more interesting interview with The Rolling Stones so I listened to that for an hour.

Keith Richards is far more uplifting an interview than Chin. I know it's only rock 'n' roll, but I like it.

Guest Editorship
QueerJoe, another partner-in-crime and the man least likely to become my next husband, has asked me to judge his "Guest Blog Writer" contest.

Now, I know you all read his blog, at least I hope you do. So get out there and write your little hearts out. He's sending me the entries without names, so I won't know who wrote what.

However, if there is an excessive use of French in any of them, I will know whose it is.

Be fruitful, be rare, be handy, and it's fucking raining here in NJ, so be sitting on your asses knitting.

Wednesday, August 27, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
I took up knitting from time to time as a relaxation, but I always put it down again before going out to buy a rocking chair. --Beatrice Lillie

Knitting and rocking. When will we see this as a thread?

Or will it be knitting and rocking on the cat?

Varugated Yarn and Other Like Media
Got the Herrschener's Yarn Shoppe catalog in the mail yesterday and as I flipped through it, I realized why I don't buy much handpainted yarn or "fashion" yarn.

Fashion and handpainted yarns do the thinking for you and provide the colors for you, then demand that you use them in nothing more than the very basic of patterns.

I'd rather knit a plain raglan in plain old wool and revel in the raglan shapings than to do the same in some glitz or some multi-colored handpaint. Koigu being the possible exception and even with that, you're limited. Plus the pattern support for Koigu is awful. And I will admit to having knit 8 pairs of socks in Opal.

But that's just socks. I guess I'm just an old traditionalist. Or I can't find room in my dresser drawer for a TouchMe thong.

And You Thought Knitters Were Psychotic?
Here's a scary link to an interview titled "The Woman Who Couldn't Stop Scrapping" that was originally broadcast on NPR via PRI, courtesy of Sissyboo Karen, the Scrapper. She insists that ScrapDweebs are even more insane than KnitDweebs.

After listening to this, I agree. But a caveat: You do need high-speed access and Real Player to listen to this interview. And the interview runs about 10 minutes or so.

But this woman is a sick fuck.

By the way, Sissyboo has graciously agreed to do a cameo on the blog one of these days and offer up her own thoughts on Dweebism and other related topics.

It's because she's a chickenshit and won't do her own blog. Karen's concerned about the morons on her lists and that they'd know it was her writing her vitriolic thoughts.

Like that ever bothered me.

September Bizarro Link
Anyone want to contribute? I'm not finding anything exciting. Nothing excessively kinky, though. I already did the duct tape site last year, so forget that one.

Of course, full fashioned stockings and what you can do with them is always fun. But I digress.

Send me your links and I'll put up the winner. So I'm fucking lazy. Bite me. You get entertained here, now it's your turn.

Le Salon
The Comments are turning into a veritable salon of shit being discussed. And I for one am encouraging it. Nothing is so off-topic that I have a problem with it except the following:

:: Your fucking cat and how it gets into your stuff (Just for Lauren, so she doesn't get emotional)

:: Your medical history

:: Cute stories about your kids

:: Anything cute

:: Any list thread that I've trashed in previous entries

:: Anything French

And with the bait set, I return to the world of the real and the living, feeling quite quick and dead but...

still rare and handy.

Sunday, August 24, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
My favorite thing about the Internet is that you get to go into the private world of real creeps without having to smell them.
--Penn Jillette

And I've met a few of them...

Do I Really Need This?
And If So, Why?

This is my question du jour or possibly du month. It's moving time: September 22 I'm out of here. So I'm taking a break from packing boxes to write the blog. I have no life.

Why did I buy so many books?

At last count, I have 10 boxes of knitting literature alone. And that's just one bookcase. The other knitting bookcase will fill about the same amount.

Do I need The Sacred Art of Knitting? Granted, it's a curiosity and has been out of print for years and years...but do I need it? Guess so, because it went into the box.

We won't even discuss the magazines--Threads, Knitter's, Interweave Knits, Vague, pre-80s Vagues, Spin-off, Piecework, various McCall's Needlework & Crafts, American Home Crafts, Family Circle Knitting, assorted pattern books from the '20s through the '60s.

Oh God. And that doesn't count the other fiber and needlework books on quilting, embroidery, and textiles.

I did discover a very interesting book that I'd forgotten I owned on Russian Revolution textiles.

Thirty years of indiscriminate collecting. I swear I'm going to catalog everything as it comes out of the box and put it all on a database. Really.

And then there are all the other books downstairs.

It's Alive!
Well, sort of. I went to the abominably organized XRX web site because the pictures of the Fall Knitter's are up. No, I will not give you the link to the Knitting Alexisverse. Go do a Google.

It's not totally hideous, amazingly enough.

There is one completely awful vest by Cyr that is so misshapen, I could cry. Besides the yarn, which looks like it was lint spun by a cretin, one side of this thing seems to be smaller than the other, especially above the armhole. Gack.

And of course, the Tiny Diva has some bizarro offering, an asymmetrical vest that looks just like other things she's done. Perhaps David Letterman will enjoy it, though.

But on the whole, the issue is blandly inoffensive.

The Elsebeth Lavold vest is exquisite. I will buy the magazine for that alone and make it.

And Speaking of the XRX Web Site...
While I was there, I thought I'd also take a peek at Melville's Purl book. Figured there'd be some preview pictures. Not.

But the really funny thing that I discovered was that on some of the XRX book pages, you are invited to write a review and rate the book.

There's only one problem. Well, two actually.

First of all, if you click on the "Submit a Review" button, the window text immediately informs you that whatever you write becomes property of XRX. Of course. Stupid me.

Second, nowhere on the pages could I find any link to reviews that had been written.

Does this mean that no one has written reviews? I doubt that, given the sycophantic nature of the Knitter'sDweebs.

I could hazard a guess and suggest that the advertising department is collecting these "reviews" for their multitudinous in-house ads.

But then I'd be a cynic, right?

Back to packing I go. Strapping tape is so rare and handy, I could almost want to wrap it around my naked body and make a fashion statement.

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
A dress makes no sense unless it inspires men to want to take it off you.
--Francoise Sagan

Agreed. And that thought should apply to some knitted items as well.

Sexy Knitting
Got your attention? Sure I did. You're all craven creatures at heart.

With all the ghastly knitted creations out there in the magazines, I have to say that I really love Joan McGowan-Michael's vintage lingerie and other romantic knits. Her design company, White Lies, features the most incredible stuff, all of it kitted up and most reasonably priced, in my opinion.

Here's what I like. It's on my shopping list for Stitches East. I hope she's going to be there.

Stitches East
Despite the fact that I hate putting money into the X-Men's pockets by paying them their pound of flesh at the Market door, I really don't know of a better shopping experience than SE's Market.

Screw the classes. I don't need no fucking classes.

QueerJoe, Kathy, and I (and Elly too) will be meeting up on the Friday. And hopefully some of the rest of you will join us. Annie? Carol? Lisa? Antonio? and anyone else from the NY-NJ-PA area or wherever who will be there. Wish the Aussie contingent could make it...I will happily put up any of my Aussie readers who can pay for the airfare and their own yarn.

My Old-And-Tired-Thread Predictions
Used and Abused would be more like it.

OK, gang, here's what I foresee as threads in the coming weeks on the major lists. I've decided that now the fun in reading the lists is to anticipate what warm and fuzzy topics the KnitDweebs will be discussing....again and again and again.

1. Holiday Knitting
2. How to Deal with Ungrateful Relatives/Friends/Boyfriends Who Gave Your Felted Bottle Covers/Red Heart Wristers/Too-Short Willywarmers A Lukewarm Reception
3. Copyright
4. What are YOUR Favorite Needles?
5. What is YOUR Favorite Yarn?
6. Copyright
7. My 2003 Endless List of FOs Happy Dancetime!!!!!!
8. My 2003 Endless List of Charity Items I've Donated
9. My 2004 Endless List of Shit I Want to Knit
10. My Totally Uninteresting List of Shit that I Bought at Stitches, Destined to Languish in my Stash or Be Sold on E-bay.
11. Knitting on Planes
12. Copyright
13. Knitting on Planes
14. I'm Going to [fill in destination], are there any LYS?
15. The Great Acrylic/Natural Fiber Debate (already starting now on the Knit List, so hurry!)

There are so many more...and I'm sure you'll all add your dollah-three-eighty in the Comments below.

Except for Michael, whose interest in my blog lies largely in making trouble and making provocative statements in the Comments.

Is he not rare and handy at that, I ask you? But then, I don't want no man who can't stir up some shit.

Saturday, August 16, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
No matter how old a mother is, she watches her middle-aged children for signs of improvement.
--Florida Scott-Maxwell

Happy 80th Birthday to my mother Elly on August 21st.

She taught me to speak good English, think for myself, stand up for what's right, and work hard.

And she taught me how to knit.

Elly didn't want anything fancy so we had a barbecue on my sister's deck this afternoon to celebrate her upcoming milestone birthday. Here's some pictures.

I don't want to make my blog into a fucking PictureTrail of boring family crap. But there are those who read this and know my family, so it will be of interest to them.

I guess Elly still looks for improvement in her middle-aged girl. But maybe not.

Lights Out, No One Home
You knew it had to happen. I was just waiting until the power came back and the Knit List was flooded with posts whose subject was "Blackout Knitting."

It didn't take them long.

I had visions of some idiot lighting 123 candles and her ball of yarn simultaneously. And then whining to the list that her stash went up in flames so that at least half the list would send her replacement yarn.

It could happen. I'm waiting. For those of you who read the list, would you like to hazard a guess as to who this KnitDweeb could be?

I have my short list, where's yours?

Fortunately, we lost no power in Lac du Budd; however, Loopy sent me an e-mail saying that power was out in her neck of the MI woods. She was running her laptop on the limited battery time she had.

I doubt Loop was worrying too much about whether she could knit or not.

Creepy Chris Stuff
Vis a vis our movie discussion in the Comments of the August 10th entry, Lisa stuck a great Chris Walken link into the last Comments. As she calls it, "All Walken noises, all the time."

When I saw my sister Karen, the scrapbook creator (or "scrapper," as they call themselves), I told her she missed out on a fine movie discussion. Karen occasionally reads the blog when she remembers the URL.

She's like that.

Karen's found plenty of ScrapDweebs on her scrapbooking lists.

I think she should do the sister blog to mine for scrapbooking. The Scrapping Curmudgeon.

Two rare and handy Sissyboos. Don't ask what Sissyboo means. It's Karen Kode.

And Michael, you're working too hard. Come out and play.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Reality is the leading cause of stress amongst those in touch with it.
--Jane Wagner and Lily Tomlin

A small darkened cave, some sticks and string, a CD player, and the Man of Mystery.

Oh baby, that's a what I want.

I'm back to knitting socks exclusively. This makes the 8th pair this summer. What wid dat? I can't concentrate on the FPS. Anyone want a pair of socks?

I seem to churn them out. How many pairs do I need, really?

Don't Follow Leaders, Watch The Parking Meters
I am the proud recipient of an authentic rejection letter from the editors of Knit Lit Too.

Yep, inspected, rejected, dejected. The pump don't work cause the vandals took the handles.

Must be a Dylanesque morning.

Only Loopy has read my submission. She liked it. I wrote it back in January and believe it or not, it's a serious piece. I suppose I could let you read it, since it won't be published anyway. So click here.

I seldom write much of a personal nature. I'm used to writing about technical issues, processes, directions, what have you. Reality that's focused away from me. I long ago got used to having my writing inspected and rejected. When you write for a living, no matter what the topic, you get used to other people's fingers in your literary pie.

Saturday's Meet-up
QueerJoe has a great write-up (with pictures) on his blog, so I won't duplicate his effort. Suffice it to say once again that it's good to hang out with other knitters, especially that crew.

They're fucking insane.

Rules on Commenting
There aren't any, although you know that if you say something totally and utterly dweebish, I reserve the right to ban you without notice from commenting.

I've done it before. I have no qualms. This is my blog. This is not a democracy.


I'm actually quite enjoying the movie discussion that we've been having. Michael adds a piquant touch, don't you think?

I'm finished here. Time to continue being rare and handy so the powers that be put money in my bank account twice a month.