Thursday, October 04, 2007

Best Quote I Heard All Day
If I owned Texas and Hell, I would rent out Texas and live in Hell.--Philip Henry Sheridan

Indeed. Sorry, my Texan readers, but Little Phil's quote still holds true. (Extra credit to those readers who know who he was.) I must say, though, that the people who I have met here have all been terrific. OK, I know. It's HIS home state. Well, I won't cast aspersions on the fine citizens of North Texas. He ain't from here, anyway.

Scene leaving DFW airport with Susan, getting on 35E. Does this look any different than westbound rush hour traffic on I80 in Jersey? Nah. And what was worse--it was about 1 in the afternoon.

I understand that San Antonio is very nice. However, I like hills. No hills here, other than Flower Mound, or so I hear. Great name for a town, no?

And the fucking killer crickets. Worse than the damned Canada goose shit that coats NJ parking lots. These crickets will eat your toddler for lunch. And they're all over the place.

With only the cellphone camera, the pictures are a bit limited, I fear.

Howsome-ever, the room was upgraded to a suite, with a HD TV in the sitting room. So I'm not too cranked out. It's been fairly grueling, with Susan and I team-training user groups. But we finished by 3:30 today and took off for the hotel pool and Jacuzzi. Plus, we had a hugely expensive dinner last night courtesy of our VP of Sales at a place called Pappas Bros. Steakhouse, a Houston-based chain, that makes Ruth's Chris look like Sizzler's.

So I ain't bitchin'. Except I'll be glad to return to Sopranosland Friday afternoon.

Clothes or Yarn?
I would say my luggage was balanced appropriately. Enough clothes and plenty of yarn. Plus, I packed my Comet spindle and actually have done a little spinning in the evening. Ted would be proud of me.

And I've been working on the Squeeze Socks. If the stitch pattern looks familiar, it's because I've used it before with fingering-weight sock yarn. This time, it's worsted weight. Cascade 220, to be exact. In a man's size 12. So the rib is compressed, making the sock look weird. I do have a live model lined up, though. I liked the socks Joe made, so I decided to swipe the cuff-heel-toe second color deal.

And I packed about 4 different sock yarns because I expect to have the Squeeze Socks done by tomorrow. Yeah, I knit in the lobby before meeting Susan for breakfast. And of course, it was nothing but knitting on the plane.

Did you know that you can take knitting needles onto planes? WOW. Who knew? Loopy suggested that I send many posts to the KL, asking if it were OK. I decided to take my chances. And knit half the leg and the heel during the three-hour flight here. Oh yeah, and we took off on time and landed a half hour early. Go figure.

Open Mic Thursday
So having loaded the suitcase with yarn selections, I have no terror of running short of something to knit. And it is a true fear. I often refer to my knitting as my Linus blankie because it's my comfort, especially away from home.

But yarn shops away? Here's your topic for this week:

When you travel, do you compile an itinerary of yarn shops? Or do you pack your luggage with projects and eschew fiber shopping?

After asking about knitting on planes, the single most annoying question on any large knitting list is the "Any Yarn Shops in Curacao?" type of query. Of course, I suppose that's arguable. There may in fact be far more irritating questions asked by the professional maroons who infest these lists.

The New and Improved Spin-Off
I have to say, the latest issue is excellent. The redesign is actually much more successful than the recent redesign of IK, in my opinion. The beauty of this redo is that the magazine retains its unique personality while getting an infusion of modernity. Not easy to accomplish. The articles have improved greatly over the past few issues. I recommend the ones on using mini-combs, working with camel down, dyeing a silk hankie.

However, the greatest improvement is in the book reviews. Finally, real reviews. The good, the bad, and the ugly as opposed to flat reportage. Whether this will apply when Spin-Off reviewers write about Interweave Press books remains to be seen. That will be the proof of the pudding.

So I will be back over the weekend. And as usual, I am post-dating this so I can get some sleep. I may post on Sunday, if I'm not otherwise occupied by a rare and handy friend.

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