And My Knitting Needles Say “Nyah Nyah!”

30 10 2006

Somehow the brilliant TSA employees at Detroit’s whatever it’s called airport decided that my Lancome Hypnose mascara and Matte T-Zone Gel posed a bigger safety threat than did my knit Picks Options circular needles that are currently snuggled deeply into the first of many balls of alpaca goodness sent to me by my Secret Pal! (For the uninitiated, KP Options circular needles are very very pointy. One could do damage if one wished. This one does not wish.)

I’d go back and edit that sentence but I don’t wanna. I don’t buy much makeup, but what I do buy is good stuff and I wanted to poke the eye of the woman who suggested I take my purse to the luggage counter and check it so that I could keep my mascara. Dummy. You now those TSA trolls are pocketing all the goodies they make fools like me throw out.

Poo on you, NBC, for not playing the commercials for the documentary The Dixie Chicks have coming out, “Shut Up and Sing.” I’m not a huge fan of the Chicks, but I thumb my nose at NBC for their ass-kissery, and submit that it’s precisely this eager puppy behavior of theirs that has landed them where they are, and will keep their feeble head underwater. Matthew Perry, I’m hiring.

After watching the finale of Flavor of Love for the billionth time (and now the reunion special), I have to wonder how much crap was handed to Flavor Flav by his Public Enemy buddies. Crying all over the place! Who will ever believe now that Flav is a tough, scary man? (But, did anyone ever think that? My upbringing was not one in which Flavor Flav was a household name.)

All right. I really need a nap, which might explain the overly crabby tone of this mess.

The Shakespeare Wars!

25 10 2006

I’m neurotic when it comes to picking up my children on time. One benefit of being divorced from my previous job is that I have plenty of time to get to the school to pick up my kids and bring them home home home to me. Usually I can get in about 15 minutes of knitting and, much like my dear Kitchenner Pal, I have NPR on. This afternoon I particularly enjoyed a book review by Maureen Corrigan of Ron Rosenbaum’s book The Shakespeare Wars. I love Shakespeare, truly and deeply. I will always read and enjoy Shakespeare. I have a complete works edition that was printed in the 1850s which bears the inscription, in lovely handwriting, To Anna, From Harry. It’s beautiful.

So this review. It was wonderful! If there’s one thing I appreciate, it’s an acrobatic but natural use of the English language. During her review, Maureen Corrigan used the phrase “theory-encrusted treatises.” I even figured out how to use the voice memo function on my Treo just to be able to say out loud that wonderful phrase, and to have it recorded so that I might use it later on. However, that phrase is not organic to my vocabulary so I most likely won’t use it.

Theory-encrusted treatises! Encrusted brings to mind something wonderful covered with another something wonderful. Blue-corn encrusted salmon with buttered pecans! Diamond-encrusted platinum band! (JungleJim, do you ever read this?) That phrase made me giddy, and made me miss so desperately the Shakespeare classes I took at UWSP with the always delightful Michael Steffes. I rather hope he Googles his name and ends up here. “Theory-encrusted treatises” denotes a satisfaction and enjoyment, a hearty digging-in with rolled-up sleeves. Maybe a napkin tucked under the chin, fork in the left hand knife in the right, and heck yes I know I’m talking about a review on NPR about a book written about Shakespeare and his works. Wonderful, absolutely wonderful. I need to tell Santa that I’d like this in my stocking!

Speaking of rolled-up sleeves, I’d like to mention something I saw yesterday, which was my grandfather’s 85th birthday. Happy Birthday again, Pop! My grandmother asked me to pick up a carrot cake from one of those chain, mega-discount, membership required stores. I won’t mention any names, but it’s not Sam’s Club. It’s the other one. As I stood at the bakery waiting for the bakery department worker to scribble “Happy Birthday Lou!” on the cake, I watched with grand fascination as other bakery workers mixed something on a huge table. It looked like gigantic mounds of dried fruit and, as it turns out, actually was mounds of candied fruit. Now, I’m rather finicky when it comes to people touching my food or what has the potential to become my food. I prefer to eat in restaurants in which the kitchen is not visible. (Except for Waffle House.) That way I’m blissfully unaware of Hygienic Atrocities which are more than likely being perpetrated against my meal. These people at Store X, these people mixing FRUITCAKE, had plastic gloves on and I watched this with satisfaction. But then I watched at they really dug into their pile of candied fruit and quickly became horrified. These fools were elbow-deep in candied fruit. This means that whatever benefit the rubber gloves provided was neatly and instantly undone by the fact that the bare arms of these employees were smudging ALL OVER THE CANDIED FRUIT. There could be arm hair in your holiday fruit cake, should you choose to buy it from this particular store. And for all you know these bakery workers may have wiped their noses with their forearms, as people do when they don’t have a hankie handy. I was repulsed, and quite glad that the carrot cake I was about to take to Pop had most likely been prepared by germ-free robots in science fiction clean rooms. That’s what I choose to believe.

Thanks, Secret Pal!

23 10 2006

I knew today would be a good day!

After nearly a week of waking up waaaaaaaaaaaay too early I slept until 6am. That’s huge. When I don’t get enough sleep I am a wretch. I know it. So sleeping until 6 made me quite happy. Then I got off my lazy butt and finished some rather important things I needed to complete. In two weeks I’ll have my substitute teaching certificate, which is one step closer to my Dream Job, high school English teacher. Yippee! That made me happy enough. But then! I went to the mailbox and discovered a package slip and those always fill me with joy. Nothing bad ever comes in a package. To me. (Please, weirdoes, don’t try to track me down solely for the purpose of mailing me taxidermy groundhogs and the like. I don’t even want to imagine what else might arrive.)

Nay, gentle reader, this was a GREAT package! It’s from my Blogger SP9 Secret Pal! In it were eight balls of the softest, most wonderful alpaca yarn I have ever held in my greedy little paws. I hugged the yarn even before taking it out of its package. There were also some chocolates, half of which have been eaten (poor tummy!) some very pretty note cards, a candle that I have burning now because it smells SO delicious, two sets of very pretty stitch markers, a great canvas draw-string bag that will become my WIP transporter, and a lovely handmade card form my SP! Thank you so very much, SP, whoever you may be! I really appreciate your thoughtfulness in putting together such a great package! Check it out! And no, I won’t share!

Thank you again, Secret Pal! 🙂  I love love love it all!

And Now She’s The Kitchener Winner!

21 10 2006

Thank you all for your crazy love! Congratulations to The Kitchener Bitch for not only having the pseudonym which is farthest from her true personality, but also for being drawn out of the Rasta Patch Kid hat as the winner of my How Much Do You Love Me contest!

Here we see my son Nolan mixing up the names.

We also see him drawing out the slip o’ paper.

Finally we see his dismay at possibly having to read out loud the word “bitch.”

What is important here is not the blurry last photo, nor how prim and proper my son is, but how handsome and luscious he is.

Congratulations, my dear KB! And many thanks to everyone else who reads and comments.

I’d like everyone to pay a visit to Brian Sawyer, who would have won a prize for Least Likely to Comment had I been advertising such a thing. But alas, no. His blog is truly chock full o’ crafty goodness and I know fo’ sho’ that you will LOVE it. No need to thank me.

Who ARE these people?

19 10 2006

I just don’t know. Very strange.  (Ok, I know Christie Brinkley and Lara Flynn Boyle.  It must be my teeth, or the tild of my head.  We’re al head-tilting, aren’t we?)

Field Trip!

19 10 2006

Last weekend JungleJim and I went up to Jerome for the day. Lovely little town, we saw a glass blower blowing glass. Lots of little pubs with scores of motorcycles parked in front. I cannot help but think of Pee Wee Herman whenever I see a gaggle of motorcycles. In addition to the bikes, pubs, and glass, we also happened upon a lovely yarn shop called Knit 1 Bead 2. Gee, imagine my surprise! (Ok, I wasn’t surprised, I suggested Jerome specifically to hit the LYS.) We spent about 30 minutes milling around before we left. *GASP* No purchase? Huh? We were hungry, what can I say.

We trudged up a steep hill and had lunch at a restaurant called The Asylum. Now, I love Halloween as much as the next person, but obviously not as much as the people at The Asylum. Maybe I’ve become prudish and too uptight in my old age, but COME ON. This was a RESTAURANT! There were gory and gross decorations all over the place. All over. To make matters worse, the obnoxious grody people at the table next to us positively stunk to high heaven. And when I say stunk, I mean they smelled like dirty truckers who have been on the road for three days straight without a shower, and nothing but the Thunder Mug to keep them company. Anyway. The food was excellent, so I shall stop complaining.




On our way back down the hill I felt some mysterious force pulling, nay, grabbing me, compelling me forward towards the yarn store. Here is another fine example of JungleJim’s marvelous self. We went back to the yarn store and spent maybe 45 minutes there while I tried to find something. He encouraged me to find some yarn, what a guy. The ONLY thing that disturbed me about him being there with me was that he kept asking me to knit him a sweater. You read that right. JungleJim, who is not yet my husband, not even officially my fiancé, asked me to knit him a sweater. Of course I said no. He even knows about The Sweater Curse and yet persists in asking me to knit him a sweater. So I did what any smart lass would do. I smiled sweetly and said sure I would, but he had to buy the yarn. He agreed and said he wanted black. Fine. So I found the most luscious, scrumptious, expensive cashmere in the store and handed one skein to him. He said “Honey, this will knit a whole sweater?” I said no, we’d need about 15 skeins. His quick math told him the sweater would cost nearly $200. He put it back. Saved!

I finally found three skeins of Manos del Uruguay that called my name. Since I’m going to Detroit next week I need a hat and scarf. Here’s the scarf so far, it’s a Dream Swatch Head Wrap Thing from the always lovely Knit and Tonic. Not sure about the hat, so if anyone has a quick and easy hat pattern, I’m open to suggestions.

I’d also like to finally give some love to Artsygal, whose gorgeous laceweight Wine and Chocolate you see here on the needles. It’s the ball on the left. Propping up the needles is a ball of something the name of which I forget, but it’s the edge of my Random Lace project. But wait! What is Random Lace? Random Lace is lace for people like me who can’t figure out or manage to create lace from a pattern. There’s a lovely woman here in my fair city who blogs at, and she was kind enough to put up her Random Lace Tutorial. Nice! I’m a firm believer in doing things My Way, so Random Lace really appeals to me.

All right, lovelies, that’s all. I’d also like to take this opportunity to remind any of my male readers to check your balls. A good friend of mine recently underwent surgery to remove a cancerous growth that took over his testicle. He’s having chemo as I type, and I bet it ain’t fun. So as Tom Greene sang, love your balls, feel your balls. (But please don’t tell me about it afterwards.)

AND! Oh happy day, I cannot wait to see Stranger Than Fiction. I love you, Tony Hale!

I’m Glad I Don’t Knit With My Feet

17 10 2006

I broke my toe. You may ask why I did such a silly thing, and I’ll tell you why. This evening was baseball practice night for my kids. Chloe was up to bat and decided that, rather than hit the ball with the bat, she’d catch it with the inside of her ankle. This decision caused her to fall immediately to the ground while howling in pain. Consequently, I leapt up from my chair, dashing my needles and Manos to the ground, and headed straight for my wailing daughter. I was not deterred by the heap o’ bats on the ground, oh no, my daughter was in pain and I needed to be by her side. My left big toe lingered for a few moments in the pile of bats while the rest of my moved onward and overward. Unfortunately my toe wields some hefty influence over its nail, and despite the strong yearning the nail felt to continue forward with the rest of me, it did in fact hover betwixt me and its toe.

I know this is a pretty obnoxious post. I’d like to thank JungleJim for the big old Ketel One and tonic he made for me immediately upon my arrival at home. I’d like to say I feel better already, but that would be a big fat lie and I’ve given up lying for Advent.          

And, ok, I should have mentioned Miss Thing is just fine.  She’s a lot tougher than her Mama, I guess, because she hopped back up and resumed her position at bat.  I thank you for your concern!  🙂

On the Kindness of Strangers

13 10 2006

Here is a True Story, gather ‘round.

In January of 1999 my two very young children and I were headed home to Spain after being in the states for two months during the holidays. Wait, let me bulk up that sentence a bit. My kids (my 2 year-old and 8 month-old) and I were headed home with: a sprained ankle (me), two car seats, and three huge bags that pushed the limits of airline weight restrictions. From Houston, this was going to be a 598457-hour flight and I was not looking forward to it. But we were to meet up with the (con)artist formerly known as my husband at JFK Airport so I didn’t worry overmuch. Lo and behold, I was paged in New York and informed that SH was bumped from his flight and was not meeting us after all. (He was on a later flight that was routed through Atlanta.) Ok. While awaiting take-off I doped up those of appropriate age with Dramamine and settled in. Chloe had her own seat beside me, Nolan was in my arms. At some point during the flight our plane dropped. It spent some time dropping and had I not been busy being air-sick (and you try being air-sick with one hand holding back a frantic 2 year-old and one arm holding a squirmy 8 month-old!) I would have probably died of fright. But alas, I did not.

Eventually we landed in Madrid, where I was to meet up with SH at the train station and head for home via the bullet train down to Rota. Bust my buttons, I was once again paged and learned that I was to head on down without him. How was THAT going to happen? SH had all of our money! There I stood in the train terminal with three huge bags, two screaming kids, their car seats, and my sprained ankle. I stood rooted to the floor and instantly and thoroughly burst into tears.

Whatever that term is which describes the migratory movement of sponges, that term describes the speed ot my movement towards the train ticket window. I was $11 short for one ticket. One ticket for the three of us, to moosh into one train seat. Let me tell you something about Spaniards. They are, in general, shorter and thinner than my German/French/Polish heritage has made me. So I shuffled away figuring we could wait until SH’s flight arrived, whenever that would be.

As I stood there looking absolutely pathetic, a man in ragged clothes and no small amount of facial scruff wandered over to me. My first thought was “Crap, he’s going to ask me for money. Please don’t let him ask me for money, I don’t want to give this man any money.” He smiled at me, mumbled something in Spanish, and started heaving my cart back over to the train ticket window. I was too tired and hopeless to do anything but stand there (with two kids and a sprained ankle) and watch him steal our luggage and buy himself a train ticket. A minute or two later, he returned, smiled, and stuck a train ticket and three meal coupons into my hand. He then continued to push my luggage cart towards the train boarding area and waited with us for the train to arrive. When it did, he heaved my 569546547 pounds of luggage up onto the train, smiled, patted my babies on their heads, and wandered off.

This is a true story. I have no idea who he was, and forgive me, but I was exhausted after our trans-Atlantic flight that almost ended in tragedy and never asked his name. I’m sure I said gracias, in my ugly, American Learning Spanish in Southern Spain Accent, so it came out “Grah-thee-uh.”

(If anyone is curious, SH was “bumped off” his flights voluntarily. He stayed behind in Atlanta because he was having in affair with the sister of the woman his best friend had just married. I SWEAR I am not making this up.)

Anyway. There are a lot of Knitties that are that man in the Madrid train station. It is an astonishingly gorgeous thing that people will give their time, their money, their homes, whatever they have to give to those who look like they need it. And now, lest this turn didactic, I bid you good evening.

And so it is!

12 10 2006


I’ve rather run out of patience with Blogger. I’m sure this is a song many have sung. I’ve got to get all of my pictures out of photobucket now, because darn it all if these posts don’t look darned foolish without them.  Ok, obviously they made it here.  I’d also like to share the fact that from now until Friday, October 20th, I’m having a contest, a real one this time.  This is an “I love you and your blog and of COURSE I’d follow you from Blogger!” contest with a real prize.  Next Friday I’ll draw a name from a hat (prolly one that I knitted!) and notify the winner.  Hooray!.

Should I move to WordPress?

11 10 2006

Would you follow me wherever I may go? Were you suitably impressed with my coining the phrase “Rasta Patch Kid”, so much, in fact, that you’d change a link if’n you have one to this, my lovely site? Do you also wish I’d tame my run-on sentences?