Archive for February, 2007

Posted by Stitchy McYarnpants 26 COMMENTS

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Tap tap tap. Tappity tappity tap. Tap tap tapitty tap tappity tap tap tap.

My fingers are moving (twitching, actually) on the keyboard, but they aren’t so keen on typing at the moment. There’s nothing wrong with them, aside from being a little cold. It’s the words that are posing a problem. I know lots of words and how to spell them.

Elephant. Underpants. Green. Floorboard.

But I’m having a hard time choosing specific ones to use. And then there’s a small matter of putting them into a certain order that’s pleasing to the senses. Certainly I could herring bowl at muffin tickle, but then dowel chickens watermelon in the gurgling vine. Juggle what I selfish?

~sigh~ I do love to write. Love it! But I’m not sure lately what I want to be writing about. The quality of my writing on this blog has really suffered over the last year. I need to recommit. It seems that in lieu of actually writing, I’ve had a tendency to simply list things that are vaguely related in hopes that . . . what? In hopes of what, I’m not sure. Inform? Entertain? Alleviate guilt from lack of writing? Sadly, I think it’s the latter.

Why do I have this blog? What do I hope to accomplish with it? It started as simply a place where I could talk about my newfound hobby. Since then, knitting has ceased being just a hobby and blown into a full-on lifestyle, which is rather odd. I never imagined that knitting would become a lifestyle choice, like being a nudist or a vegan. Who would have thought that someday I’d have so much in common with survivalists, goth kids and Mac users?

And yet, I’m not really making advances with my knitting or fiberlust. I simply don’t have the time or the inclination right now to try new things. I like making scarves and sweaters and want to get good at socks. But I’m not ready to commit to spinning, which would certainly make for far more interesting blog fodder. And it’s through no lack of trying by friends of mine who spin. There are plenty of enabling opportunities should I choose to peek between the fingers covering my eyes. The very fact that I can whip out a list of a dozen spinners off the top of my head in 30 seconds is frightening, to say the very least.

That’s not to say that I wasn’t tempted at Spa last weekend. After watching most of the people linked in the sentences above spinning their hearts out, I came home, dusted off my spindle and spun up a few hours worth if merino that Melanie gave me about a thousand years ago. (1 human year = 500 blog years).

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It’s fun, but my arm got tired and achy from holding the spindle up, and I may not have been holding the fiber right. Let’s just say I held it like a baby bird of prey. I started making mistakes and then thought about just how long it would take for me to make actual plied yarn that I could use and put the spindle back in the dust.

My inner Verouca is just not that into it, what can I say? I want yarn NOW! Anyone know of a Golden Goose that excretes a lovely merino/silk blend? If so, I’ll take one of those. NOW!

Flange tires doorknocker I saying? Oh yeah, I was talking about the State of the Blog.

My fellow, citizens, the State of the Blog is sloppy and unfocused. Not surprising, since that’s how I’ve been feeling for the entire winter. I don’t know if I knit enough for it to be the entire focus of the blog, so I need to get that idea right out of my head. When I first started the blog, I was able to focus a wide lens on fiber and related matters, allowing myself to extend the boundaries in sometimes clever and pleasing ways. For some reason, since my time has been rather limited, I’ve found myself tightening the reigns on my subject matter a bit. I’m not really sure why, but I think I’ve tried to take the easy way out by making boring posts that had knitting content crammed in there somehow. Round peg, meet square hole. *smash!*

And you know what? That’s a total rip off. Certainly for readers, and also for me. Why am I putting what I love last? (I can, and should, ask the same question about my husband, who I rarely spend any quality time with lately) More importantly, why am I imposing these time constraints on myself, only to fritter away hours doing unimportant crap? I mean really useless? Like mindless time-suck things? I’m talking video Mah-Jong and Cake Mania, people. Seriously. It’s bad. Time wasting has been like a drug for me for a couple of months now and I need to snap out of it. Is Olympia Dukakis around? I need a good slap, a la Moonstruck.

Man, I feel like I just outed myself as an addict, but I kind of am. I didn’t actually intend to even bring it up when I started this post, but it’s kind of a glaring issue. While not the actual disease, it’s a huge manifestation of symptoms. Why would I rather build an Egyptian city‚ more than anything else in the world? (I uninstalled that a few days after I installed it, but for three or four solid days, it was frighteningly all-consuming) I know it’s just a really easy way for me to not have to think about my To Do List for a little while. I can very easily sit in front of a video game for an entire day and work on it to the exclusion of everything else. It’s a way for me to shirk any and all responsibility, but trick my brain into not feeling bad because it actually is working and being productive. Just not to any actual living things. Sure, I’m planting reeds so I can make papyrus so I can open a Scribal School and trade with other countries for more good my citizens want‚  but, and I say this in all earnest What the fuck? I don’t know that I’ve ever dropped the f-bomb on this blog, so that will give you a good idea of where I’m at with this.

So, I need to rethink the order in which I’m doing things. Maybe I should look at my life like a simulation game. If I can build a burgeoning city or bake, frost and serve beautiful cakes to hordes of angry Easter bunnies (no, seriously), why can’t I slop up everything on my own non-virtual plate? Well, the short answer is that I can, as a matter of fact. So what’s the hold up? Who knows? Winter doldrums? Eternal sleepiness? A good old fashioned sense of being overwhelmed? Yes, yes, and heck yes!

What’s the answer? I don’t rightly know, but I’m working on it. The purpose of this blog is to give me someplace to exercise my writing muscles and to hopefully be entertaining while doing it. I feel like maybe trying to limit myself to fiber-related subjects, no matter how loosely related, isn’t working any more. I don’t want to outgrow this blog, so I’m going to let the seams out a little and see if I can make a more flattering fit.

And on that note, check out this sweater I’m making! I love it. I got the pattern from The Elegant Ewe in Concord, NH. They’re now selling the kits online, and while it was quite a splurge, its well worth it. The yarn is Louisa Harding’s “Grace”, which is a merino/silk single that has a shine you wouldn’t believe. The woven pattern is pretty mindless, but easy to mess up if you aren’t paying just a tiny bit of attention because it alternates rows. I’ve had to unknit a fair bit because I duplicated a few rows. I can’t wait to wear this.

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I also had promised myself that I wouldn’t buy anything at Spa because I need to knit from my bloated stash. And I almost made it, but I caught the Boogie Fever at the very end. I hypnotized Dot with this Atomic Melon sock yarn. That’s why it isn’t actually in her mouth.

Well then, I’d say my plan for extending the blog beyond fiber is going really, really well, wouldn’t you?
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Posted by Stitchy McYarnpants 14 COMMENTS

The audience at the 1945 International Science Consortium was stunned into silence when my great-grandfather, Schnapsidee von Genesplice, presented his thesis. The theme that year was Quadrupedal Temperature Change and he had stumbled upon an ingenious plan to keep tender paws warm and toasty.

These twisted kittens would never again lose their mittens, for they had been genetically altered to have woolly mitts where tiny paws should be! Their misshapen heads and a suspicious lack of any discernible noses or mouths shook fellow scientists to the core. Suddenly, panic broke out in the front row as the “cats” approached them, their crooked torsos being dragged along the stage by five stumpy legs. The marked absence of any tails was just too much to bear and convinced many that science was best left to the fiction writers.

Posted by Stitchy McYarnpants 11 COMMENTS

In today’s exhibit, we’re proud to present something very special. We’re still waiting for the certificate of authentication, but are certain that the curator of the collection from whence it came is reputable. They had a feedback score of 3,472. That’s a Red Star, folks! But we can’t let a thing like paperwork or verification hold us back, so let’s respect the honor-bound sanctity of eBay and move ahead.

Behold this important transitional piece from late in the career of Georgia O’Keefe! Observe the contrasting colors as they dance sensually on a springy bed of deep forest green. The organic shapes seem to invite you inside to share their warmth and wonder. It’s simply astounding how she was able to transfer her vision from an inanimate canvas to a living one. From paint to yarn, the progression is as natural as her visual representations of the holiest of holey – the flower and the cow skull.

It’s amazing what you can do with crochet, isn’t it?

Posted by Stitchy McYarnpants 28 COMMENTS

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I was recently delighted to have an opportunity to sit down with Guido of It’s a Purl, Man. He came over, we had wine and pizza and talked about men’s fashion, specifically in knitting patterns. Clearly, it wasn’t a conversation about how great it all was. :)

Here are all the photos we looked at and talked about during our conversation. As you listen, scroll through so you can laugh and learn along with us! Click here for the podcast. It’ll open in a new window so you can look and listen. I hope you enjoy it, I’m happy with the way it came out.‚ I listened to it so I could do my best to get everything in order and it was disconcerting to hear my voice. Do I really sound like that? I’m not saying it’s bad, but I mean, if you heard it and didn’t know‚ it was me, would you know it was me?‚ It harkens back to the days of the old Boston Museum of Science commercials. ““My name is Karen!” It’s fun to find out what your voice really sounds like!

Also, I just wanted to mention that although we laughed about the titleof Annie and Drew’s new book “Men Who Knit‚ & the Dogs Who Love Them”‚ and joked that men were merely novelties, the book really is smashing. I was lucky enough to meet Annie in Los Angeles and got to paw through a suitcase full of gorgeous stuff from the book (as well as this one) and it’s fantastic! They both are, actually. So take heart, fellas and pups, there is light at the end of the tunnel of fug.

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