Thursday, May 22

Knitting quietly, feverishly

The house is very quiet without Gwiffen. She had all these funny little quirks — most of them quite noisy — and Demetrios just doesn't make enough noise to fill up the Gwiffen-shaped hole that's left. I think he's making an attempt, though; he's a lot more cuddly lately (and not that he wasn't cuddly before), and I even saw him playing with one of Gwiffen's favorite toys the other day, which he never really did before. So we're getting along, but it's still very quiet.

I have been knitting like mad on Laminaria. So mad, in fact, I'm five rows into the final chart. At this point, there are so many stitches that each row takes a good half-hour to complete. So I've been knitting while watching Firefly, or Food Network Challenge, or How It's Made. Or catching up on podcasts, which I rarely listen to right after they come out.

The blossom chart transitions into the first edging chart.

That's all I have. My mom and I are going to see the new Indiana Jones flick tonight, because it's showing here in town (and we both enjoy Indiana Jones).

Friday, May 16

Just west of Halcyon

My cat Gwiffen was hit by a car last night. Some dear friends saw her in the street and were kind enough to bring her home. My dad and I buried her in his hosta garden this morning, right next to my favorite hosta, called Halcyon. My dad randomly chose the spot, and I couldn't have come up with a better one.

I can't seem to find any decent photographs; the above was taken at the end of December 06, back when she was a boy and called Slartibartfast. (I don't know why that happened, either.)

But the lilacs are blooming and smell lovely, and the apple trees are flowering, and it's still a beautiful day.

Wednesday, May 14

Thresholds, and reaching them

There’s a point at which one cannot comprehend alliteration. Last night, I discovered the threshold was around approximately 11 p.m. There’s also a point at which sentences stop making sense, even when two other people are telling you they sound just fine. I think that was around 12:15 a.m. (I’m guessing here, as I didn’t look at the clock then.)

And then there’s the bit where you start to hallucinate. It turns out my hallucinatory threshold is 1 a.m., at least when I’m still at work. My coworker said last night, “My god, it’s almost one!” I looked at the computer clock and sure enough, it was 12:58. That was the point at which I realized I didn’t remember much of what had happened after 11. Two hours of my time just went, Ah, you’re copy editing. It will take you far longer than you think. (That’s why I guessed at the time above. I know it was about midway between the Point of No Alliteration and the Point of Hallucination.

Suffice it to say, I am a tired girl indeed. I believe I will spend my evening working on the shawl, now that I've gotten past the strange mistake from last week. Or maybe I'll just drink margaritas to oblivion.

Either way, it will be fun.

Tuesday, May 13

The Shawl, The Weekend, The Template

I made myself a tiny bit late to work this morning because I had to fix my shawl. I worked on a few rows at some point last week, and had started the fifth repeat of my nemesis, the first row of the blossom chart. (In this chart, it tells you to turn two stitches into nine at the ends and centers of the row, and three stitches into nine on the rest of the row. It requires needle acrobatics and sticking out of the tongue. Beautiful results, yes, but still nemesis-worthy.)

Well, by the time I got within the last few stitches of the row, I knew something was off. I should knit three together, turn two stitches into nine, and knit the three edging stitches. But there were only two to knit together, not three. At this point there were two options: knit two together and continue on as if I had knit three together, or tink back and find where I flubbed it, correct the mistake, and knit a half-row more of my nemesis row than called for in the pattern. I knew it would irritate me if the rest of the shawl was shifted one stitch over, so I chose the latter.

I almost lost some stitches and had a small heart attack, but otherwise it's almost back on track. I'll finish the broken bit at lunch.

BAS visited me this weekend. First we visited the Eiffel Tower and made faces.

Then we had to stop by my office (a quick jaunt from France) so's I could make some sweet CDs for her trip back home. We had a thermal scanner installed at work, so we both had to pass through it first.

Curiously enough, we both scanned as cold. Must've been the tasty ice cream we had Friday night. I suppose birthday cake-flavored ice cream tends to do that to you.

Unfortunately, just before she'd gotten in the car to drive west on Friday, BAS found Blanca, the latest winged addition to their ever-expanding menagerie, dead on the floor of the cage. And she got an even sadder call on Saturday: her poor bird Zula had died as well. I had met Zula when I visited BAS' house last fall, and found her to be very sweet, if a bit noisy. The whole situation definitely put a damper on the whole weekend, but I think we had a good time despite it.

I changed the template and got rid of the Works In Progress widget, and the book widget. WIPs will be back once I adjust it to the template. Books probably won't.

Thursday, May 1

Ooh, it's that creepy eye!

I took a few photographs of the magnolia next to the courthouse. They've been blooming lately, and they look gorgeous.

As I was webbing the paper* this afternoon, I caught a couple of spelling mistakes that I know SpelChek would have caught (despite our layout program's dreadfully inaccurate dictionary). For instance, "improbe." One of the correction choices was "improve," which was the correct choice. The other was "imp robe." I would very much like to read a story that has imp robes in it.


I was almost returned to being a one-cat household last week. I hadn't seen Gwiffen for almost a week — I'd let her outside because it was so nice last week. She turned up on Tuesday, and is doing quite well.

Oh, and my brother was one of the four characters in the spring play (Tennessee Williams' The Glass Menagerie) last week. Here he is with the girlfriend, who played his mother.

Check out those eyes!

Now I've spent my afternoon listening to the Sweeney Todd and Aida soundtracks, playing a little Snood and a little PackRat, I'm content. I think I'll go home and read about ebola. That's really all. I finished this post precisely two hours after beginning it. Crazy.

*webbing the paper: putting this week's edition online.