Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Best Quote I Heard All Day
We do have a zeal for laughter in most situations, give or take a dentist.--Joseph Heller

Thanks, Dr. Sinisi. Now I'm laughing. Really.

Glad that's over. I'm back.

And you can chalk the next item up to either gross stupidity or a surgical daze. I'm going with the first.

Anatomy of a Nightmare
When I fuck up, I fuck up big. And let's not get into "mistakes are learning experiences."

There are honest mistakes and then there are fuck-ups. Fuck-ups being when you know better and go ahead and do something dicey anyway with the full knowledge that you are treading dangerously.

I did that with the plied silk yesterday. I should have known not to try to wind it onto that cheap fucking Japanese swift. (Notice how I am already blaming the swift.)

All went well the first 300 yards. And then, this.

I had thought about using the niddy-noddy but no. I wanted to measure it while I skeined it. Then I thought about the big wood standing swift but I was too lazy to get it from the living room.

Then I thought, "This shit's gonna maybe slide off of this lousy little swift." And then proceeded to further delude myself by thinking, "Nah, it'll be fine."

Even worse, when I tried to set the swift up sideways to eliminate slippage, the clamp wasn't deep enough to do so. And with all that, I went ahead anyway. I should be shot.

So the great rewind began. Now you know the difference between a mistake and a fuck-up. And so do I. I had better options and I didn't take them. Now I pay.

Diminishing Returns
On a happier note, with the silk off the Joy and because I never stop pushing the envelope even after I've fucked up, I decided to be intrepid and attempt to spin laceweight with the Cormo I bought at Rhinebeck.

Unfortunately, the angle at which this picture was shot doesn't really show how fine I managed to get the Cormo. It's a thread, literally. Exactly what I wanted. This is some beautiful stuff, let me tell you. (The blue at the top of the bobbin is the leader--I had already spun for more than an hour, so you can see it took awhile to get even this far.)

I was amazed at how quickly my drafting settled down into the groove it needed. No tension, fairly fast treadling and letting the twist build up before releasing were key. After one false start where the twist was insufficient and the thread disintegrated, I had no further problems.

Ted Myatt is my laceweight guru. He's done absolutely wonderful writing on his blog, Knitterguy, about spinning laceweight. As Franklin can attest, his laceweight is spectacular. I actually hadn't read his laceweight info prior to spinning the Cormo; however, it was somewhat affirming that I do pretty much as he suggests.

With all the knitting crap blogs out there, it's good to know that people like Ted are sharing their expertise. More and more I see blogs where that's happening. Lately, I've been reading more blogs and enjoying and learning. Let's hope this is a trend.

Podcast Cometh with the Iceman
My audio essay on Brenda Dayne's Cast-On podcast show is going to be aired sometime in January. Brenda felt (and I concur) that it is not appropriate for the holiday season due to its subject matter. Plus I have to re-record it, since the sound was too low.

Without giving anything away regarding the topic, which is about knitting (of course), I have to say that both writing and recording this piece was one of the most difficult, emotionally trying things I have ever done. The essay, April 25, was actually written about a year and a half ago. Only Loopy has read it. And now Brenda. It's arguably the best writing I've ever done.

The winter issues of fiber mags are starting to appear. I got Spin-Off yesterday. Other than the tablerunner, I was not exactly thrilled with the issue. It wasn't terrible; just nothing appealed. I am looking forward to seeing Interweave Knits, however. There's an article about Veronik Avery, one of my favorite designers, and two designs by Shirley Paden that make me hopeful.

I shudder to think what's going to be in Knitter's. I've already shuddered aplenty at VK's "Glam Slam" issue.

OK, this is enough to make up for five days vacation. Time to get the house cleaned, the book written, the silk untangled and the tree in its stand. Perhaps by Friday the silk will be presentable. I don't even dare think about doing any weaving right now, even though Janice from GA sent me a lovely Schacht boat shuttle so that I can do two weft colors easily.

I leave you with a rare and handy picture of my backyard. Snow. Just dee-lightful.

No comments: