Friday, July 28

Weekend fling

I'm heading out this afternoon to visit the member of the Cribbage Crew that lives in the bulbous nose of Iowa. It's a housewarming party! I'm really excited. (And I get to drive on I-80 for about a million miles. How fun is that?)

I'm taking my camera, so here's hoping I remember to actually use it ...

Speaking of sock needles*, Brittany got back to me very quickly — in fact, I received the package on Tuesday (I think), and just forgot to mention it until now. They didn't just send one replacement, though — they sent three! It's almost a whole 'nother set. I was so excited. Maybe I'll just break the other one the rest of the way, sand it, and use it as a cable needle ...

By the by, if you're hoping to owe Davy Jones your soul (see yesterday's post), go play the POTC dice game at Disney. (It's pretty lame, but the graphics are kind of cool.)

* Maybe I'll have to check out some yard sales for cheap costume jewelry, eh Duck?

Thursday, July 27


Sounds familiar, eh Medic?

Wednesday, July 26

All work and no play

It is 8:45, and I am at work.

I left work yesterday at 12:45 a.m.

That's the part I hate about the county fair.

I can't spare entertainment for you today — entertain yourself.

Monday, July 24

Split, but not with bananas

It's official — for their 25th anniversary, my parents will be digging up fossils. They're pretty excited, I think. My dad for the fossils, and mom for escaping for a week. (They won't be excavating rocks all that time. I imagine they'll get lost in Utah once or twice.)

One of my new DPNs split. Brittany, birch, 5 inches, US 2. I noticed this split when I was looking for knitting to take to church — we had a family sing-along, not unlike the Von Trapp family — and I was not about to twiddle my thumbs for 70 minutes. Thankfully, I was able to email the company; they'll be sending me a replacement soon. For now, I'll continue the Jaywalkers, if I ever remember where I left my pattern.

If you've ever wanted a Cthulhu sock monkey, there's a tutorial posted. (I want one. Have to find toe socks.)

Friday, July 21

Nothing but Celine

This comic was in yesterday's paper. It made me laugh, and I was glad to find it online (and colorized!). As some people have heard me say before, Celine Dion is really the only thing I hold against Canada.

Right now it's a pleasant 65 degrees and raining. It must be really muddy out at the fair today, but I'm not due for another photo shoot until tomorrow morning. I'm sure it will still be muddy, and I'll be photographing mules. Mmmm ... muddy mules.

I spend all day yesterday (four or so hours) freshening up the blog. I was trying to get it to do something like this, but it wasn't cooperating, so I modified this one until it worked properly. I probably would have been better off just adjusting my other one, but there you go.

I've recently started reading a sci-fi series written in the mid-80s; the first book is Shards of Honor by Lois McMaster Bujold. I was drawn into almost immediately. A little more background can be found at Fictionwise eBooks.

More later. It seems I have been commissioned to transport three boys (two brothers and a cousin from Louisiana) to lunch later, and I have to get some work done, too.

Wednesday, July 19

Hot hot hot

A Womb of One's Own O! Watch as ye heavy hand of the post office comes crashing down on this minor publication.

Okay, so that was a little sarcastic of me. Really, the heat is our crushing dictator. (The post office was just irritating me when I typed that. Long, dumb story with which I won't bore you.) Why? The monstrosity of machinery that cools the back office broke. It no longer cools, in fact, I don't think it does much of anything any more. The one in the front office works just fine, but, as I can't force the people in the back office to melt into little pools upon their chairs, we have to have the front door propped open to provide a little air flow.

It will take something like $3300 to replace the unit with the same model, and $200 more than that to replace it with a fancy model. We've all done the math, but I don't think the publisher (aka the pocketbook) will think of it that way. Meanwhile, we're all left to swelter during the one of the hottest times of the year.

Actually, strike that. We just turned on the air and closed the doors to the back. Ahh.

Somewhere along the line, probably while living with Dustro, I developed a sensitive nose. I can't stand the smell of air freshener. It's more like nostril poison. (Except for some citrus-scented things. I can handle citrus. And also candles.) And my dad just took the offensive air freshener out of the bathroom and started spraying it around the front office. I almost threw something at him.

Also, I don't particularly understand the legal term duces tecum — "you will lead with yourself". Okay, well I understand it, but I think the terminology is a bit awkward. (I'm not the one being subpoenaed, I just saw the document.)

As you can see above, I managed to finish the womb. (Other womb photos can be found here.) I started another project from Mason-Dixon Knitting, using Elann's Cannepone (I forget how that's spelled) 100% hemp yarn. I also made another stuffed mouse last night, as the old one got eaten by the dog. Demetrios loved it. Luka's probably eaten it by now, though, knowing him.

But I must go. I have to have lunch and go to the post office before I'm due at the fair at 2:00 for my next animal show extravaganza: the 4-H cat show and the open class pet show.

Project Runway tonight!

Monday, July 17

Monday, 5:06

I have gotten so inspired for the POTC swap today. I had lots of ideas as I was signing up and going to the movie and stuff, but I've come up with two or three different things that should fit CosmicCranberry's tastes quite well. I wish I could share them, but in case of lurking (Hello?), I'll refrain for now. But here is a short list of things with which I may or may not be crafting: felt, monkeys, yarn, polymer clay, suede, paper, thread, Pringles, paperclips, horseshoes.

Hey, I said may not, didn't I?

Monday, 12:47

Pardon the previous post — I think I was on crack or something. When I was talking about Everything is Illuminated, I meant to mention that I also purchased the book. I managed to run across Saturday, after watching the movie the night before. I took it as a sign. Let me give you a small excerpt.
I have tutored Little Igor to be a man of this world. For example, I exhibited him a smutty magazine three days yore, so that he should be appraised of the many positions in which I am carnal. "This is the sixty-nine," I told him, presenting the magazine in front of him. I put my fingers — two of them — on the action, so that he would not overlook it. "Why is it dubbed sixty-nine?" he asked, because he is a person hot on fire with curiosity. "It was invented in 1969. My friend Gregory knows a friend of the nephew of the inventor." "What did people do before 1969?" "Merely blowjobs and masticating box, but never in chorus." He will be made a VIP if I have a thing to do with it.

While I'm typing about books I bought on Saturday, I may as well quote Bazaar Bizarre by Greg Der Ananian.
I was but a wee flaming homosexual when my mother wisely took me under her wing and taught me the ladylike skills of knitting and cross-stitch ... and so began my love affair with crafts.

Doesn't that just make you giggle with delight? (This book was half price, and I thought it was quite entertaining. And it is.)

I knew Fyberduck would make a cool swap button.

In other random thoughts, I think I'd like to get a ball winder. Actually, a swift would probably be a better choice at this juncture — I can wind balls by hand with my makeshift nostepinne (read: paper towel tube). But when I buy yarn online (or elsewhere and forget to have it wound) and it comes in hanks instead of balls or skeins, I usually jump the gun and forget that the yarn will always tangle if I try to knit from it.

So, all ye knitters, do you have suggestions? I've heard from a couple of places — Craftster and the Knitty Coffeeshop — that Jo-Ann's is the way to go, since they offer a 40% or 50% off coupon virtually every month. (Or I may just get a winder and use chair backs, of which we have plenty.)

That's all I've got for now. It's time for lunch. (Useless!)

Saturday, July 15

Illuminated, Mad Mistress of Death

Research went well. I found out who my swap partner is — the organizer — and so I've been doing a little brainstorming.

I watched a couple of movies last night — Atlantis: The Lost Empire (yes, I'm a sucker for Disney) and Everything is Illuminated. I highly recomment the latter to all of you. (Especially the deleted scenes. They're just too entertaining to miss.) It's based on Jonathan Safran Foer's book by the same name. It involves a "very rigid search".

In honor of the swap ...

Your Pirate Name Is...

Mad Mistress of Death

Hopefully I'll have fewer fragmented thoughts by Monday, though I've been recruited to photograph a dog show for the paper — an outdoor dog show — so we'll see whether or not I melt. Anyway, off to battle dirt.

Friday, July 14

"Research", et cetera

The roommates (and the dog!) are gone for the weekend; with any luck they'll be in Missouri this afternoon. I have the house to myself this weekend, and the cats are in charge without the dog to harass them. It's nice to have a quiet house, and to not have to put the baby gate up to keep the dog from chewing on my WIPs and books.

Plans for the weekend include seeing Pirates again, this time with the family. I'm excited, as now I will get to do a little more "research" for the swap. Otherwise, I fully intend to clean house. (Four furry animals = lots of hair. Ew.) My closet has somehow been taken over with laundry, so that's on the agenda as well. I'll also continue reading Eragon by Christopher Paolini (who is just a few months younger than I, apparently), which I borrowed from my brother. I really thought it would take me longer to get into the book, according to what an acquaintance told me, but it only took part of a chapter. It's also being released as a movie in mid-December. Jeremy Irons and John Malkovich are both in it. Yummy.

Anyway, back to work. I imagine I'll see you on Monday to regale you with stories of pirates and the crusade against dust bunnies in a verysmallhouse.

Thursday, July 13

Crimson, get your Gunn

I'm so glad Project Runway is back! I think I'd been having Tim Gunn withdrawls, but all is right with the world now. Here's what I think of the candidates so far ...

  • Alison — She has very classic design tastes. I really like her style, and I'm interested to see how the show works out for her.
  • Angela — I'm not really sure what I think of her yet. I don't hate her, but nothing's coming to mind just now.
  • Bradley — I don't think I have a feel for him just yet, either.
  • Bonnie — I really like Bonnie. I'm excited for more of her work.
  • Jeffrey — "Neck Boy" is what my dad called him last night while watching the show. I'm mostly a fan, but he needs to get rid of the high-and-mighty 'tude.
  • Katherine — I really love her. I think I'll be rooting for both her and Robert.
  • Kayne — I like him as well. I love that he has a vendetta against all wire hangers. I really liked his dress for the first episode. I can't wait to see more.
  • Keith — Mr. I've Never Done Women's Wear is a bit too cocky for me. I did not want him to win, as he only used bedsheets. That's cheating in my mind. Be brave and go for unconventional materials! (Ok, I forgot about the duvet buttons, but still.)
  • Laura — I like her sass, but her comment about Ohio was really weird. What do people do in Ohio? Same thing they do everywhere else. But I loved her work with the furry rug and chandelier.
  • Malan — Jesusmaryandjoseph. I just want to kick him in the face when he laughs in that Austin Powers way. Ugh. "I prefer working with higher quality fabrics." Give me a break! That's part of the challenge, Mr. I'm From Everywhere I Was Born In Taiwan.
  • Michael — I liked his innovation with the coffee filters. And I like that he's sort of in the hip-hop genre, which hasn't been represented on the show in past seasons. I'm excited to see what his coming designs are.
  • Robert — I think he's going to be my favorite. He's a little nerdy, and he designs clothes for Barbie. I thought he should have won this first challenge.
  • Stacey — She deserved the auf. I'm glad that she tried the show, but having only two years of experience with design, I think think she could use a little more experience.
  • Uli — I really want to love her, especially since she's German, but her design was a little underwhelming. In fact, it reminded me of Stacey's, except a little less I Can See How You Covered Your Cooch.
  • Vincent — Ah, the basket hat. I actually don't mind him. I think it was a little rash to cash out his 401K in hopes of reviving his name in fashion, but he's entertaining nonetheless.

So, Bonnie, Katherine, Kayne and Robert. Those are my favorites.

MD KAL I also managed to finish one of my warshrags (that's the ballband dishcloth from Mason-Dixon Knitting), as you can see. I finished it while watching PR. I cast on for a coordinating one in the opposite colors. So far, so good!

Tuesday, July 11

Why is the rum always gone?

POTC2 — Captain Jack Sparrow This photo describes Friday night pretty accurately, I think. If you want to see the whole costume, check out my post on Craftster. And speaking of Craftster and Pirates ... I joined another swap. I imagine Fyberduck will be right on my tail ... and creating a smashing icon for it, too!

Anyway, the housemates and I saw Pirates Part Deux. When we saw the kraken at the end, a full-on mouth shot, we were all thinking the same thing: vagina with teeth. (You know what I mean if you've seen the film. Don't even deny it. Remember the goo? Yeah. I know. Disney's sneaky like that.) I really enjoyed the movie quite a lot. I recommend it (and the Des Moines Register gave it four stars), as long as you're not afraid of gigantic, toothy vaginas. You will appreciate the way Captain Jack Sparrow runs when chased by native cannibals. (I must practice that.)

Sunday evening we took a short trip to a local state park, where we played in the fjord. (I don't believe the locals actually spell it that way, but I thought it was a nice and distinctive Flickr tag.) The dog enjoyed it, even the part where we had to push him in the water because he's too chicken to jump.

I also managed to cast on three different projects this weekend: Widdershins socks (pattern) from the latest Knitty, ballband washcloth from the Mason-Dixon Knitting book, and another womb (pattern), which was requested some months ago and subsequently forgotten.


Thursday, July 6

Every now and then I fall apart ...

This morning I was listening to the radio and doing a little sudoku when all of a sudden, I hear a techno-esque version of Total Eclipse of the Heart. It certainly wasn't Bonnie Tyler, but it wasn't terrible. So just now I decided to google the song and see if anyone's name came up ... but instead I ended up with a bunch of videos.

And that's all I have to say today.

Wednesday, July 5

And really bad eggs ...

Pirate Dreads My goal is to go to Pirates this weekend in costume. As Captain Jack. To the right, you see the dreads I'm making with Red Heart acrylic, fun fur, and a strand or two of gold embroidery floss. My brothers even approved, so I like 'em. I plan to post the finished pics in my Flickr under the yarrrn tag.

Now I just have to find my eyeliner ...

"So, now that you've got your degree, what are you going to do?" "Have you done any more thinking about what you're going to do with your degree?" "What's your degree again?"

I do get a little bit tired of questions such as these. I find it interesting that people continue to ask me what's next, if this newspaper gig is just temporary, if I'm still pursuing music. (I get that last one a lot, especially from people that have barely talked to me since high school. Things have changed since then, and I forget sometimes that they all weren't given notice.)

But really, I'm quite content at staying where I am right now. That doesn't mean I'm going to stop going on adventures, or stop learning, or yearn to become a librarian or professional fiber artist or anything. It just means that I'm going to be in limbo here for a while, so get used to it. I enjoy my job, repetitive though it is; I enjoy my house, small and cluttered; I enjoy my cat, despite the fact that he attacks my face while I'm trying to read and my yarn while I'm trying to knit. I enjoy being single, even. I just enjoy being.

This introspective moment has been interrupted by the new Knitty. Hooray! (I almost had an aneurysm for all the socks ...)

Sunday, July 2

Weekend road trip, Knit list

2x2 socks There's a hole in my gusset, dear Liza, dear Liza ...

Yes, the pair of 2x2 socks is half done. I finished the first sock on Saturday at my grandparents' house while watching the end of The Amazing Panda Adventure, which, along with this, my grandpa had rented for some reason. My mom and I decided to go north and visit them for a couple of days — we ended up seeing quite a lot of family.

Today, on our way back home, my mom and I stopped at a cemetary south of Pocahontas, where her grandparents and other assorted dearly departed family members reside. It was a very small cemetary, and very peaceful.

Here is the top of the sock and the side view, if you're into socks. The pattern's in the sidebar. The ankle's a little bit loosey-goosey, which is interesting on my big ankles. I don't mind, though. The yarn's a cotton / nylon blend from the great Fyberduck.

My family members were all impressed by the knits. My uncle wants a hat like my Topi sans brim — he thinks it needs to be black and have a badge sewed onto it so he can wear it while he's ranger-ing. My aunt has requested washcloths for her kitchen (yellow and blue and maybe a little white and green), a la Mason Dixon and Elmore-Pisgah company. My step-aunt also requested a pair for her kitchen (light green and tan) and her mother's (red and black). My cousin K also thinks she needs a blanket. I told her it would probably be a graduation present. (She just finished third grade.) She didn't mind. I'm going log cabin style on that one, green and blue (MDK again).

I also went swimming this weekend in a public pool for the first time in a few years. It was a nice weekend.