Archive for June, 2006

By the way

Sunday, June 11th, 2006

I forgot to mention that they still have a very diverse selection of racial categories in Arembepe, although not nearly so many as they used to.

Onward.

I don’t know where my day has gone. I have been to two grocery stores in preparation for Bonnaroo, I have vacuumed a car, and I have wandered town with Amanda. I have eaten some delicious fruit. I have spent an unreasonable amount of time on the telephone with a certain writer whose privacy we shall not intrude on, because it may be slightly rude to do so. Once I tell you that said writer is on their ninth cell phone. *slight cough*. Yeah, I know. I’m boring. I told you that when I started this. (Side note – I despise the telephone. However this unnamed person has not had a telephone since…oh..WINTER QUARTER. Also, I seem not to know how to end phone conversations. I am sorry if you ever get stuck on the phone with me, because if you’re bored I probably am too. Moving on.)

This:

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Is some of the fruit. A peach and a nectarine. It’s a crappy picture, but the colors are just too beautiful to pass up posting. Also, just imagine the smell. I had to eat the nectarine over a sink because it was running all down my arms. I also have cherries (I adore dark cherries. And pineapple. Together. With strawberries. All sliced. Mmmm) but I have not eaten any yet and did not take a picture.

And this:

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Would be Kati and Connie under the moon last night. Darlings, I love you. We must redezvous again quite soon.

And this:

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Is what happens when two knitters rendezvous in Bubble Tea for the first time in months. That makes six–count them, six!–knitting projects. And two patterns. And two bags. (Thanks for the bag, Jess! It is an amazing knitting bag I love the pockets.) Four socks, Two laces. =D

We also got a little silly.

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Okay, so we got a *lot* silly. Shush, you. And yes I do look ridiculous, thank your very much.

This is my final picture, then I must run off to watch a movie.emilystrikesagain.jpg

The beginnings of the peacock feathers shawl (linked something like two entries ago. I am too lazy to check) and yes, the green thing in the last two entries is secret undisclosed project #2!!! Jess’s lace scarf. =D

Okay done. With the exception of the last “by the way…”

I adore your comments. I plan to be better at answering them, now that I have more time. Expect responses in the future. Have a lovely evening! (And I suggest that you go to the store and examine the fruit section. Get some peaches. Seriously people, it was sooo good.)

I am too lazy to edit, and I have plans for oh…twenty minutes ago. I hope I did not make any terrible mistakes! To the movie!

Oh, Kalamazoo.

Saturday, June 10th, 2006

Your dirty air, your lousy water, your crime rates that frighten the cautious little Ann Arborites, your lack of accessible yarn stores… I just can’t stay away, can I?

Well…not when The Sneak is graduating I can’t. Fortunately though, after today I don’t *have* to come back until September. So here I am, tired hungry and still cringeing from the yarn I bought.

What? Oh, you didn’t know…about the yarn…we’ll talk about this later. I *promise* that it’s okay. Just stop looking at me like that, will you?

I meant to post yesterday, but we did not have internet in the hotel. And as a side note…there are few places that I hate more than hotels. Especially when I just got out of the lousy dorms. And all I have to say about that particular hotel is that for being so highly priced, their sheets had an awfully low thread count. People in this day and age don’t pay any attention to fiber quality! Give them and unlimited supple of smelly, complimentary things, and they thing they’re getting their money’s worth. Honestly.
Okay fine. So here is what happened. About the yarn, I mean. I joined an e-mail list for Stitching Memories, and by printing the e-mail and bringing it in I had 15% off my yarn purchase until sometime in July. As I don’t know *when* on earth I’ll be back…

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This is Anne, by Schaeffer Yarns. It is a machine washable blend of wool, mohair, and nylon I think? I’ll check later, it’s in the car. It will be used to make socks for Moom…It is actually fine enough to make lace, but still heavy enough for socks. I am excited to see how they turn out.

By the way, some of you may have noticed the lack of Emily, our esteemed Yarn Duck. I’m sure that she is going to be angry at me for leaving her out, but she is in Ann Arbor. She’ll be back in the spotlight next time.

These:

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Will become bags. The top one for me, and the bottom one for The Sneak. The colors in these pictures are decent, although not entirely accurate. The yarns are both Noro, although I don’t know which is which at the moment. I’ll let you know all about that later. For now, the colors are enough.
Okay, you’re beginning to see my complete lack of fiber control, aren’t you. This is so embarrassing. Especially when you see what I did two nights ago:

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It called to me!! No, really. I couldn’t resist. It hooked me around the neck and pulled me out to the table!

The wooden structure you see there is called a swift. It is constructed sort of like the spokes of an umbrella, in that it folds up really small and expands outward to fit your skein. This particular swift fits skeins of up to 72″ in circumference, which is about as large as you’ll find anyway. Very useful.

In case you’re still a little lost, the real genius of the swift is that it spins! It is designed to hold the skein open so that it does not become a gigantic tangle, and turns to release yarn as you wind. Most people use them in conjunction with a ball winder, but me? I just walk back and forth through the front room approximately 57,723 times until the job is done. I prefer to wind by hand.

And come on, when did a little walking ever hurt anyone?

My camera is now quite dead, until I find some new batteries. Unfortunately, that means you’ll have to wait for pictures of my graduated Sneak. She is a theatre arts major (runs in the family…) and an anthropology minor. I have to keep quiet about her plans for the time being, but I’ll let you know as things come together. =D

I can also reveal undisclosed project #2 when I have batteries, because although it is not yet finished it has been presented to the recipient. Now I just have to hurry and get through the last two repeats and edgings before she leaves on Monday…

I need to be fed. It is time to go knit and pout until we go out to lunch. And always remember:

There is no such thing as “too much yarn”.

Happy Birthday Janet!

Thursday, June 8th, 2006

My cousin Janet is seventeen today! She is a beautiful Pengo Janetto Cookie-Tester Penguin Hoosh, and she is seventeen! *EDIT 11:01 – I did not mean to say that she was seventeen twice. Obviously I did not edit very well at all!* Janet is a wonderful runner and she is the youngest Finlayson cousin from our immediate branch of the family. That means she has been putting up with the antics of three older ones for her whole life…well, that probably takes some amount of patience. Penguins are to Jan as mice are to me. Obviously I am terrible at the whole birthday celebration-announcement thing. Anyway, here is a picture stolen from Moom. It is not the best one as it is kind of blurry, but I like it. And Moom already used my other favorite as her main picture. Go look at her Janet slideshow, and know that she is definitely worth a blog entry despite my absolute lack of ability to find pretty things to say about people.
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In other news…
Home. Finally finally finally.

I am still completely exhausted, as I have not yet managed to catch up on sleep. Actually, the truth is that at the moment I am shakingshakingshaking from the *small* hazelnut coffee I drank at 11:30 AM today. Yes, I am small, why do you ask?

Last night I came home and immediately went out with the coolest goose in town. (Yes, I call her Goose. It is a long story that I’ll tell if you really want to know). The thing is, we were far too tired to do anything interesting or important. We ate far too much homemade chicken pot pie (thanks Moom!), and ended up renting a season of The Simpsons which I apparently had rented before, watched all of, and forgotten about. Honestly, I remember the episodes but have no idea who on earth it was that I watched them with. If it was you please tell me and save my peace of mind. It just seems strange that we (whoever you are) would not only have rented it to start with, but also have watched the entire thing in one sitting. Hmm..

Once we were far too sleepy to function, TK showed up. *Shrug* What can you do? We finished the season and laughed at a whole lot of things that didn’t make sense, or at least Goose and I did. Like having no muscles. Literally.
That was all fine and dandy, but it also meant very little sleep as I had to get up early. Hence the coffee. *quiverquiverflutter, ruffles feathers*.

Unfortunately I carried my camera around all day today and failed to take even a single picture. Moom, Amanda and I went to Afternoon Delight for lunch, where we had far too much food and I jabbered like an idiot from the recent coffee overdose. We wandered downtown, and may have bought some skirts and earrings.

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Here are the earrings on the socks (up to the gusset decreases). We’ll talk skirt later. I’m having a half-brained lazy camera day.

I got a pattern in the mail! The Peacock Feathers Shawl from Fiddlesticks Knitting. More on that as plans develop…

I suddenly realized that I cannot remember for my life what I intended to say next. *coffeecoffeecoffee*

I’ll end with this:

About a week ago, I stopped being able to sleep. Partly because of finals, partly because of the heat, and partly because of I don’t know what else. I keep waking up very early, and tossing back and forth in a half-conscious state for hours until I finally just get up. It was interesting that in one of those crazed and desperate moments where I was basically crying from sleep deprivation, a thought occurred to me that I would never have dreamed of awake:

“I feel like a loom.” Those are the exact words that passed through my head. When I rememberd it hours later, I concluded that I (more specifically) felt like the shuttle of a loom. They pass back and forth, over and over, carrying the weft through the warp.

Sometimes I think my whole body is constructed of fiber in some manner. The more you work with something, the more everything that you encounter must measure up with that thing. Everything in my life is explained by theatre, fiber arts, or patterns of some form or another.

I apologize for my scatteredness. Perhaps I’ll work on that after I sleep.

I reallyreallyreally hope that the coffeecoffeecoffee wears off soon. At least I can still knit and keep track of my pattern…

18 hours!

Tuesday, June 6th, 2006

That is all the time I have left here. Until the fall, that is. Hmm..so that breaks down into about three hours of final-taking, seven hours of sleeping (if I get lucky), four hours of studying, three hours of packing, and one hour of pretending to do any one of those things and failing.

That’s going to change around a bit…

My room is a gigantic mess, and my camera has been packed away for now. Pictures will resume tomorrow, hopefully. I apologize for my scattered state in the past few days, as things have been–and will remain–hectic. I have assorted things in assorted containers absolutely scattered over my bed, my closet, my desk, and still a bunch of things that need to make it into said containers by about 4:00 tomorrow.

Emily is quacking around, repetitively checking my yarn packing job, and repremanding me for my carelessness. Particularly when I shove partially completed sock projects haphazardly into the basket, regardless of needles or position.

I have found a lot of random things, and I’m not sure why I have all of them. My favorite though was a fortune cookie fortune that said “you have the endurance for the long haul”. Hmm..well I guess I did make it *this* far, but we’ll see, we’ll see.

That reminds me of last fall, when I wore my green coat for the first time in months. (Sudden realization that I can show you a picture!!)

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This coat! The upholstery coat. That picture was taken *on* my eighteenth birthday. For those of you who don’t understand the funny part about that, or why I look so strange and defeated, my birthday is April 24th. Now look again…exactly. I knew you would get it. It was warm the day before, and it all melted the next day. Fine.

Anyway, my story is this: I was walking across campus, and I put my hands in my pockets. I felt around a little. Out of my left pocket I pulled a fortune that read “don’t worry about money; the best things in life are free”, while simultaneously, out of my right pocket, I pulled three pennies. It was one of those perfect little moments that causes you to squeak with surprise, then immediately call all the writers in your life. I was disappointed however, as they all felt it would have made a better story had I found a $20 or something. I still disagree. I could not have been happier with $200 than I was with my piddly little three cents. It was a pretty day, and I was on my way to see the oldest friend I still talk to.

Now I am just procrastinating. Time to study…

One final down

Monday, June 5th, 2006

And one to go. The next day and a half will be spent studying for my Intro to the Old Testament test.

Today was Reading Drama, and the final was easy. How easy??

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Indeed. Okay, so I did the cast on and a few rows last night. but 95% of that sock cuff occurred during my class. I was part of a staged reading for my final project. (And yes…this was an “english class”. It’s a long story.)

My friend Alyssa wrote the script as *her* final project. It was really good. =D It is always fun to work with the people who care about what they are doing, even under ridiculous time constraints and alongside infuriating people.
I did eventually wash the yarn that I ripped out of the Jaywalker pattern, as you can see from..uh..the sock above. (I do plan to make the pattern in a different yarn. I’ll probably use Socks That Rock because it is stretchier. I do like the pattern, even though they NEED to post a warning.) I also made a string of hangers and hung it from the ceiling in front of the fan to dry.

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I would show you the whole hanger string, but I can’t handle the picture. It is too busy.

Ack, I have to run off and rehearse for someone’s final directing class scene. I had more to say, but I got really distracted with packing and left my post mid-sentence. I’ll tell you about sleep looms tomorrow.

Anyway, this is Alyssa’s hat that I’ll explain when I finish it (since I have to disappear now):

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To the theatre!

What happens when

Sunday, June 4th, 2006

Your roommate drops an important paper down the crack between the bed and the wall?

Well, you remove her drawers, tape a kleenex over your mouth,
seize a fake flower, and writhe your way face-first into the dusty depths of dorm room under-bed shambling mounds and dig around as far as you can reach.

Someone really ought to vaccuum down there…

Specifically, we found:

–A love letter from 1998, from an international student. Sent through e-mail and printed.

–A regular teenage girl “letter”, from someone with large handwriting. She wrote a page and (almost) a half of which almost every other word was “Ken”, then ended by saying that her hand hurt, Ken had just called, and she had to go. Heh.

–A list of names and birthdays. It looks as though the person started it at the age of maybe..twelve, judging by the hadwriting.

–A page of someone’s paper with comments, and on the back a whole bunch of really bad poetry

–Driving directions to a professor’s house, from 2002

–An ugly poster, complete with the gooey poster attaching stuff

–The first page of a really crappy short story

–A sheet entitled “Summer Undergraduate Research in Physics”, for a summer of 1995 program

–A Fall 1995 Quarterly Music and PE Course List

The contents of my under-bed space were not nearly so exciting. I also have a much smaller gap of space in which to drop things. We found:

–A bookmark for The Manito-wish Leadership Center and The Smith Leadership Village from Saturday, August 15, 1998

–An undated (but rather pretty) Kalamazoo College library bookmark, on which the library is called the Library & Media Center (where is the “Upjohn”?) and overdue book fees were $.05 per day.

–A Jimmy John’s menu. I have no idea when it is from, but the prices were at least $.50 lower.

–An Introductory Chemistry II with Lab syllabus from Spring Quarter 2005

And my “favorite”…

–A list, printed off the internet on 3/5/98 at 6:41 AM (???? You’re a college student. Either you pulled an all-nighter, or you really really need to go back to bed) of “Ways to Say I Love You”. It is extremely patronizing, and obviously based around a stereotypical view of women.

Take a deep breath…now let it out. Oops, be careful! There are still dust woolly mammoths careening their way around the room.

I really think that one of these years, the school needs to pay someone a lot of overtime to go around and vaccuum the dust up. Pull the drawers *out* and do it. Now that we have discovered where it hides while we’re cleaning…

Because really. 1995?? Seriously people, I’m not convinced that this is a sanitary practice. I really do not want to breathe in your 12 year old dead skin cells. On top of that, this is not necessarily an indicator of how long it has been since someone has(n’t) cleaned down there. It just means that this is how long we can be *sure* that no one has pulled out those drawers and taken a look. Who knows, maybe no one has even looked since..since they built the beds. Okay, I really don’t want to think about that. At least my mattress was new this fall.
I don’t have sufficient knitting time right now. So, this is what I have done today:

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I unraveled the unruly sock. I need to wash the skeined part so that is smooth again. This is good, because I really did not like the way the darker parts of the yarn were pooling. I’ll probably remake them into plain socks.

Sorry for the poor image quality. I’m in the middle of a lazy study break. I did not even get up, and the square inch of natural light that ever finds its way in is over on the other side of the room.

It is time to write a paper and pack before rehearsal, so that I can use my powers for good. And here is a (sort of) sneak preview of undisclosed project #2…

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Emily likes lace lately. (And alliteration).

Happy Birthday Jeremy!

Saturday, June 3rd, 2006

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I did not take this picture. I rarely take pictures, because fitting a camera into my bag along with all the knitting often proves quite impossible. However, this is my favorite Jeremy picture (out of the maybe three that I have at all). It is from our junior year of high school, when we were all sixteen and funny looking. He had to grow his hair for a play we were in. Don’t let him fool you, he loved it at the time. Until it turned into a mullet, that is. He may not remember this, but I do. Strangely, that seems to be a common theme.

I was going to post more pictures from that set, but a lot of them are blurry. Also, my day has turned out to be rather unbearable and I don’t feel like dealing with them right now. I do have one more picture, from his eighteenth birthday when we got piercings.

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I took two at the time, and because I’m nice I posted the one where I look ridiculous. (Or more than I usually do, if that is possible.) In the other one, I look almost normal but he looks ridiculous. Oh well. You can’t have everything. Anyway, I pierced my nose as I had planned from the age of eleven, and he pierced his eyebrow for the second time. (Sadly, he had to take it out a while back.)

Why does Jeremy get a post? He is (as I have said before) a brilliant writer. He is also a brilliant actor, hilarious, and one of the all-around best people I know. I cannot possibly do justice to his good qualities at the moment, so I am not going to try. I actually had to rewrite because I was headed toward a much longer entry, and it really did not make as much sense as was desirable.

I debated for quite a while about what to say, but in the end nothing I thought of created an eloquent enough statement. I’ll leave it at that.

It is the start of finals week, and I have reading to do. Uhm…a lot of it. In four days, this will all be over. I’ll have time to sleep, knit, sleep, eat, and sleep.

I cannot wait. To the books!

El fin de las clases!

Saturday, June 3rd, 2006

We are officially out of class!! The Sneak is actually done with class *forever*!! EEK! Unfortunately, that does not mean that I am done working. It could be worse though, all I have to do now is read.

Let me start out with this:

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Jaywalker socks. I started them last January, and threw them aside. Why? Well..I couldn’t remember that either. (This is why I need the blog). Until I tried them on over the weekend, that is.
Because of the multi-directional biased pattern, they don’t fit over my heel. I have small feet. I am using Brown Sheep Wildfoote, color Ragtime, and my foot measurements definitely fit into those given by the smaller size in the pattern. Wildfoote is a little less stretchy than the Opal yarn used by the designer, so that should account for the disaster. However, it is a little strange to see how many people with significantly larger feet have made this pattern and had no trouble.

So, today at the yarn store… (Don’t look at me like that! I needed more green.)

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(One of those is the one from Wednesday, so REALLY don’t look at me like that.)

Anyway, today at the yarn store, one of the ladies had a finished Jaywalker sock and we got to talking about it a little.* Well, surprise surprise, the ladies there had the same/similar problems. They were having to force it over the heel, which makes sense as it is a rather inflexible stitch due to the bias. They were as unhappy with it as I am.

My only question is, why hasn’t the pattern been modified to address this issue? Obviously it is happening to a lot of people. They need to tell you right there that the pattern may not fit due to your yarn choice, *even* if you have tiny feet.

So what happens to the partial sock? It gets ripped out!! Actually, that’s fun. Sadly though, the ripping out times are when I miss Jeremy and Nate. Yes indeed, always the first volunteers to completely and rapidly destroy hours of my careful work.

Okay, I so have to include this quote that just occurred on the other side of the room:

“I see Nikki, I see France! I see Nikki’s underpants!”

“Wait…what happened to London?”

–Jessie/Nikki

This is a really scattered post. I’ve been writing bits and pieces all day, so I think i’m just going to end here. I have yarn, and you’ve wasted five minutes reading my nonsense. =D Sounds good!

* Okay, so she was trying to sell me the yarn. Yes, it was nice yarn, but I already did my damage the other day. Also though, I prefer to discover my yarn based on what I am attracted to, not what other people like.

This lady was incredibly nice and did a fabulous job of making it look appealing. She was not trying to be demeaning or force a sale, she was just excited about an incredible yarn, and praising it in its own right. It was a close call that I did not come out of there $25 poorer. I shall definitely be back to that store many times in the future.
It is not always that way. You see, the way to get me *not* to buy yarn is actually to *try* to sell it to me. If you show me once and leave me to my own devices, I am 3,000 times more likely to buy whatever it is, *if* I like it. If you spend any amount of time railing on me about its qualities and the vast variety of blahblahblah, you’ve lost it. Your opinion really does not count to me, it is about what *I* like. This happened once in a store, with a lace book. I shall refrain from explaining the situation any further, as that would be a rather tactless move.