You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘bitching’ category.
I really hate it when people apologize on their blogs for not blogging. So I think I’ll skip that. But I will tell you what’s been going on.
To refresh: I’m in New York for Big Internship. Aaaaand Big Internship is not going so well. I’m kind of sucking, and it’s been a study in frustration and self-doubt and a whole lot ‘o angry. The hardest part is that my editor, who can be just about the world’s biggest asshole (hence the angry part), actually genuinely thinks I have a lot of potential and really wants me to get better and is trying to work with me even though I’m being stubborn and belligerent (his words, not mine). Plus, when he’s not being a total dick, he’s a great guy and I both like him a lot and respect him immensely. Which is honestly why I took the internship in the first place. It’s a bit outside my realm of expertise/interest, but I thought I could learn a lot. And I am. I’m just not learning what I thought I would. Or maybe I have a lot more to learn than I thought I did. Either. Both.
I haven’t been knitting much. I find that when I get sad/depressed/upset, I just don’t. But I have been buying the shit out of some yarn. I’m in New York, after all. You could shotput a pigeon in just about any direction here and hit a yarn store. I haven’t taken pictures of ALL my purchases (coughSHELTERcoughcough), but two have gotten a photoshoot.
First! Superwash worsted by Sweet Georgia yarns.
I actually bought this in a store. Knitty City, which is about seven blocks from my house. They have TONS of it, but should be grateful I didn’t walk out with the whole pile.
Isn’t it pretty? I’ve been yearning for spring, which is why the next one is green as well.
I took it for a little walk in Central Park today, which is about two blocks from my apartment.
Look, a building in the background!
By the reservoir.
Park bench. And the quintessential Central Park shot.
Imagine all the cashmere…
I did also get a kickass new knitting bag recently.
It’s waterproof! I also got a project bag, but it came separately.
I’m a bit worried about getting all this crap home. My bags were really close to overweight coming here, and I had Nels send me some stuff I forgot, plus some other purchases. (Mostly books. No library card = sadness.)
But I am going home. Soon. In about two and a half weeks. To a (so far) successful restaurant (knock on all things even remotely wood-like around you, please). Yep, Nels opened almost two weeks ago! So far, so good. And I totally can’t wait to see it.
Yay for going home.
‘Tis a sentiment universally expressed in my last blog post’s comments that you guys were kind of worried about me. Okay, maybe not universally, but I did hear it a lot. So I want to say two things to that: Awww, thanks! and Gosh, sorry! I really didn’t mean to make anyone worry. I am fine. Granted, life was giving me the old one-two for a bit there, but I think I’ve slapped it back into submission. Life is now my bitch. Well, sort of. The point is that everything’s okey-dokey. I hope it stays that way.
Buuuuut, I know it probably won’t. Quoi, you ask? Well, I’m in grad school, right? And I’m getting a PhD, right? Right. And the time has come, the adviser said, to talk of many things. Of papers and theses and finishing, and whether my ass has wings. I’m looking down the barrel of my as-of-yet unwritten thesis right now. And I’m smelling gunpowder. It’s about to go off.
So yeah, I don’t have much time for knitting OR blogging these days, cuz I’m rite buzy. Plus I’m also doing a lot of freelancing. (Have another book review in Science coming up here.) Oh and, you know, looking for a job. I’ll be around a bit, but not too much. Sad? Sad.
Okay, enough of that crap. Let’s talk more Christmas knits! Er, I mean, rammin’ speed with ye Christmas knits, ya horn swogglin’ scurvy cur!
Aye. That be more like it.
Slippaaaaaaarrrrrs (rav it!)
Pattern: Ye Oldde Felted Moccasins by that buxom wench Bev Galeskas, from Felted Knits
Yaaaaaaarn: Patons Classic Wool Merino
Needle: US 11
Started: Dec 3
Finished: Dec 20
For: that scurvy scallywag me blub
Mods: I Davy Jonesed em up, like
Yeah so, these were a bit of a pain in the arse to knit. The directions were clear, but it wasn’t clear what the hell you were doing until you did it. Ya know? For example: mine are actually inside out. Heh. Whups!
So they’re supposed to have this little ridgy thing around the toe to make them look like real moccasins, see? And the directions say, and I quote, “Vamp has no RS or WS.” Okay, so mine does, but I thought I was taking that into account. But apparently, I’m an idiot. I guess. Because you attach the vamp, which is the top part where my Jolly Roger is, to the rest of the slipper by knitting it together on a circular needle. And so I did, with it facing the wrong way, because of this next little bit:
“Note: you will be working with the inside of the slipper facing.”
To me, that means that the inside of the slipper is facing out, and is hence working inside out. Does it mean that to you? I’m not being totally stupid here, am I? Because you then knit a little ridge after you attach the vamp, which is the ridgy thing around the toe. And I do remember thinking, “why the hell is this knit on the inside? Hm, maybe when you felt it, it all goes right.” Because that sure wasn’t how the picture looked. Anyway, I bravely knit on. Here’s what they looked like when I finished:
And then of course I felted them, and they looked like this:
Yeah, that’s not right.
You know what though? I thought they looked okay anyway. So they got wrapped and presented to the blub.
(Notice my use of yarn for ribbon? Yeah, I am all green and shit.)
He hearts them. And he says they fit better the way they are than turned inside out. (Which would be the right way. Confusing? Yes.) I don’t know if he actually thinks that or is just being sweet and nice. But anyway, yay win!
I ripped the all-weather soles off his old pair of slippers to put on these, because we both wear our slippies outside sometimes. To get the mail and bring in wood and chase cats and crap like that.
I haven’t attached them yet, because a) I haven’t gotten around to it; b) he’s been wearing them and likes them just fine; and c) I’m considering just painting them with that rug-stop stuff like knottygnome did with her very nice slippies. Plus I’m kind of daunted by all that hand-sewing. Urgh.
Sorry. I mean, there you aaaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. Matey.
Okay. I swear I’m not putting this up just to get attention. But it’s my birthday today. And I’m pretty grumpy.
Why? Ah, just crap. The same work crap. The blub quit his job (long story, but I think he’ll get another one that pays better and has benefits really soon). He also has to get some fairly serious dental work done, which is going to be expensive. My brother is in Iraq, and I’m worried about him (and my SIL, who is at home with 3 kids under 5). Our refrigerator is crapping out on us, which cheated me out of birthday pancakes this morning because I refuse to eat the eggs and milk in there even though Nels insists they’re fine. Dude, they were at 50 F overnight. They are not fine.
All in all, things are not THAT bad. We’re coping. And we’re all healthy–things could be a lot worse. But I’ve decided to lift myself out of funk by posting some things that I like.
Thing One: Sarah Haskins and Target Women. Here’s the one from this week. Timely, no?
Thing Three: Sundara Yarn. (Well, duh. Who doesn’t?) I got myself some sock yarn from Year in Color: July. Toasted orange over pistachio, it’s all the way at the bottom. But I won’t get it until midway through September, yaarg! (BTW: what the hell is a toasted orange?)
Thing Four: My new phone. I got this one and I heart it. It flips open sideways. Nifty. (Thanks, Dad!)
Thing Five: That my fall blooming lilies have been open since July.
Thing Six: Cupcakes. Specifically chocolate peanut butter cupcakes that my coworker made for me today. I will go eat one right now.
Yum and bye.
You may or may not have noticed, but I haven’t really been blogging much lately.
Yeah, I know what I said before. I’ve been busy. Yup, this is true. But that book review is done and printed (it was in Science a few weeks back, squee). And although I have been working a lot more lately, I haven’t been so busy that I couldn’t blog.
So here’s the real issue: el mojo is el gone-o.
And the funny thing? It’s not just the blogging. It’s the knitting, too. I’ve barely been doing it.
I don’t know what the deal is. In the past when this has happened, I’ve knit some dishcloths or something like that, then I wanted to pick my needles back up again. This time? No dice. The only thing I’ve really been knitting is this.
They are squares. They are for a blanket. They are neat.
I saw a Gee’s Bend quilt in the paper a few months ago that was fantastically rock awesome. And I said, I wonder if I can knit that? So I am. Not replicating it exactly, more knitting a blanket inspired by it. I also managed to buy and trade for enough Karabella Aurora 8 worsted weight to make a good sized throw (for really not that much money). It’s squishily delicious and a dream to knit. But I find I’m not really picking it up that often. Just don’t feel like it. It’s a sad and strange state of affairs for me.
I guess I’ll get over it eventually. But I’m slowly slowly making new squares. Oh, also! I’m still looking for single balls of Aurora 8 in bright colors if anyone has any they want to trade or sell. Here’s my trade page on Ravelry. I’m also thinking it’s time to cull the stash, so I might be open to sell/trade stuff NOT on my trade pages. I dunno, try me.
I have been playing in some dirt. I finally got some flowers planted on the front porch.
That’s just some of them. I think it looks nice. I like it.
The garden is also doing well. It’s been hot as shit and humid as, well, water. It’s also been quite rainy at night, which is just about ideal tomato weather. And they look fantastic. Unfortunately, so do the weeds, which have about reached critical mass. I’ve decided that this doesn’t really bother me–they tend to be in the paths, not in the beds. I can live with that. But only up to a point. When it cools down a bit, like it’s supposed to later this week, I may forgo pulling for taking them down with the weed whacker.
In other news, Kelpie’s still hanging in there.
But she gets a little worse every day. I find myself thinking that I might soon have to make a really hard decision. I’d really rather not think about that.
So instead I’m daydreaming about toy patterns. One of my verygoodbestest friends had a baby awhile back (she named her Stella, is that cute or what?) and this baby needs a knitted toy. I have a few ideas, but I’d love to get some weird suggestions from my weird readers. I’m seriously considering a dangercrafts monster, but I could be swayed. Leave your idea in the comments and I’ll love you forever.
K, bye bye now.
Hey everybody. Just stopping by real quick like to say a few things.
Thing One: Kelpie is doing okay. She’s not great, but she’s not worse either. But she has started eating again, and stopped hiding behind things. She’s also interacting with us again, which makes me have hope. I do still need to talk to the vet to see what she thinks, but I’ll keep ya updated.
Thing Two: I want to thank each and every person for their comments and sympathy and just general loving-awesomeness on my last post. I was feeling pretty low; you may have picked up on that. :) But your lovely comments made me feel so much better. Thank you. Really very much. I will answer all of your comments individually, in time.
Thing Three: My non-knitting life has picked WAY up. I have a book review coming out in a MAJOR science journal soon–my deadline’s the day after tomorrow in fact, aaaaack! I’m also writing a second, much longer article. My research is also going great guns right now. I’m in the final stretch of my PhD; I really, really hope to finish this year, but still have mounds of work to do. So I’m doing it. A lot. Head down, nose to the grind, all that crapola. So I guess what I’m saying here is expect to see a lot less of me in the coming months. (But watch, once I’ve said that publicly I’ll start posting every other day. That would be just like me.) I’ll still be here–I’m not going away! I’ll just be around less. And hopefully I’ll still be reading and commenting on your blogs as well, although I haven’t been lately. For some reason when I get sad, I clam up. But hopefully I’ll get over that. ANYway, don’t forget me, please! I’ll be back. (Said in Terminator like voice. Except cuter.)
Okay, that was all. Wish me luck!
1. Shock and Denial
This sweater is okay, right? It’s not too big in the boobs. It’ll block out. I don’t need to rip it. It’s fine. It fits.
The armholes are just perfect, too. Lots of extra room, in case I start lifting weights. Or go into bodybuilding.
2. Pain and Guilt
Dude. This is 3/4 of a sweater. Do you know how long I’ve been working on this? That I put it down LAST YEAR, just to eff it up and have to rip back to about where I started from? FECK!
Oh man! I don’t want to re-knit this. What if I screw it up again? Plus I want to start a NEW sweater, not knit this one over again. Whine! No fair!
3. Anger and Bargaining
Look, you stupid piece of shit sweater–this is your fault. You tricked me! I thought once I got more weight below the bust part, the knitted fabric would pull down more! But it doesn’t! You suck!
Okay. Okay, okay. How about this: I’ll get a push-up bra. One of those that adds…two cup sizes. I’ve always wanted to be a DD.
4. Depression, Reflection, Loneliness
I keep spreading you out on my lap. You’re so pretty! Why don’t you fit?
It would be so great if you could just…oh man, I can’t do anything right, can I? It’s just a dumb top-down raglan sleeved sweater! They’re supposed to be easy! But no, I go and screw it up royally. Jeez, is anybody as dumb as me? I tried it on every few rows! How could it possibly not fit?
5. The Upward Turn
So I started a new pair of socks. Barber Pole socks, from the last Twist Collective. (Yarn is Claudia’s Handpaints in grape jelly.) No, I haven’t ripped yet. I’m just…working on the socks. I like how they’re turning out so far. Pretty! I’m not totally worthless. I can do some stuff.
6. Reconstruction and Working Through
So I guess the problem is that four extra stitches I cast on below the arms. If I just rip back to that part, I can fix it.
Actually just above that, so I can make the armholes slightly smaller. I think it’ll work.
7. Acceptance and Hope
Sure it’s a lot of work lost, but I can make it right, actually pretty easily. And it will be better in the end. Perfect, even.
I guess that’s all. Excuse me, I have some frogging to do.
It snowed this morning.
Snow. In April.
It’s the kind of thing that when you wake up and see the fricking sleet/snow crap coming down outside and it’s Monday morning and you stayed up really late last night because you were feeling too out of sorts to go to bed mostly because you didn’t do anything yesterday because your routine was violently thrown all out of whack because you usually work Sundays not Saturdays, but this Saturday was the stupid graduate recruiting weekend and you had to be at work at 9 am and you stood at the poster and talked for two solid hours, then took 15 minutes to gobble down lunch, then took the prospective grad students on a facilities tour, then cleaned the old and scary chemicals out of the flammable solvents cabinet and then your undergrad came in and you worked with him for another four hours and didn’t get home until 8 pm on a friggin Saturday which completely messed up your Sunday and now you are tired and pissy and the sight of snow on a Monday morning is enough to make throw open the window above your bed and bellow “THIS IS NOT ACCEPTABLE!” into the slushy snow and then you remember you live in a valley and your proclamation bounces off the ridges and your neighbor’s stupid dog starts barking but you don’t care and you just slam down the window and throw the covers over your head and go back to sleep.
I worked from home this morning.
The advantage of this, apart from sipping tea in front of a cozy fire until it stopped sleet/snow/icking outside, was that I finally got around to taking some FO pics. I got a new lens, you see. Exactly the same as the old one–I got a used one on the cheap from a photographer in town. So it looks just like this, only not dented.
Isn’t it amazing that, with the right light, the detritus on your end table suddenly becomes all arty? Well, maybe arty is a strong word. I guess I mean it makes me able to see the beauty in a pile of crap. Something like that.
Enough blathering. Here’s my new hat.
It’s slouchy! It’s stripy! It’s….a Love Child!
Love Child (Rav it!)
Pattern: used pattern from Le Slouch, but styling from Robin
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Luxury Donegal Tweed, 1 skein each of slate grey and green (The 11 green, not the 08 green. Why the hell would you call two different shades the same name?)
Needle: US 8
Started: March 14
Finished: March 14
Yeppers, that’s right. I started and finished this in the same day. Ah, that was a lovely weekend. All I did was sit and listen to a book and knit alllll afternoon. It was fabulous.
Okay. So. Deets. A little bit ago, I fell in love with this hat that Moonstitches made. (Anybody here that hasn’t fallen in love with something she’s made? Didn’t think so.) But, problem. Kim Hargreaves, the designer of Robin, does not sell her patterns individually. And I’ve never liked more than one of her patterns in any given collection, so I’m not about to drop however many pounds to buy the whole book/mag thing. (This is something that’s long made me Ms. Peevy Trousers, but I’m not going into that now.) So what was I to do? Wing it, of course.
Totally not a big deal. A beret’s a beret. So I used the numbers from Le Slouch and guessed at the purl stripy thing. I think it turned out pretty well. My pom turned out a bit, er rustic, but I kinda like it that way.
Ah, the jog. I hate it, but yet I respect it. It stays.
I must say, I’ve wanted to try this yarn forever. They have it at my LYS, and I used to walk in there regularly just to manhandle it. So! Soft! It’s a wool angora blend and it is heavenly. I swear, if I ever win the lottery, I’m knitting myself a sweater out of this stuff. $10 for 95 yds is not really in my price range for sweater yarn. But a hat? I could totally do a hat.
But the funny thing? I bought three skeins, then only ended up using about a skein and a half. When I finished knitting it, the hat was tiny. Then I blocked the shit out of it. And now it’s slouchy, hooray!
I guess you’ll have to believe me on the slouchy bit. I tried to get a modeled shot, but was interrupted by Satan’s minions knocking on my front door. But they didn’t steal my soul, ha! Only a slight temporary possession.
My Crate & Barrel mixing bowl wears it well, though. But me? I don’t know, it’s a bit too, “Say Todd, wouldn’t it be swell to play the back nine and then have some highballs?” I think it may be the pom. So I might take it off. Or not. Maybe.
But I guess one plus to this unseasonable icky cold? I can still appreciate a nice warm fuzzy hat. Maybe I’ll make mitts with the copious leftovers.
At least that might make it warm up again.
Aaaaaaaaaaaack! Look what’s back! And I have no money! Oh, the humanity!
Curse you Amy Singer and your Twitter feed!
P.S. Happy First Day of Spring. Is it snowing where you are?
Part I, The Setup
Start to knit some socks. Make them man-sized. Make them boring. Make them so repetitive you consider faking your own death just so you don’t have to finish them. Name them a silly name, just to make yourself finish at least one. Finish that sock, then show it to the husband, telling him how lame and boring the knitting is. Make sure they fit. Then hide the sock away for at least a year, so your husband forgets it exists.
Kill Me With Death Sock the first, photo taken April 3, 2008. Modeled by moi.
Did I mention it helps to have a husband with a memory problem?
Part II, Run Away!
Go on a business trip, preferably right before Valentine’s Day. Dig first sock out of project retirement home and take it along. Knit knit knit on the dumb, boring sock. Get it to oh, about the gusset before you return home. Realize somewhere along the way that hey, these aren’t so bad. Slightly entertaining to knit, at least engaging enough to pass travel time. Then realize it’s probably like the bad movie syndrome.
(You know, the phenomena that occurs when someone tells you that a movie is really bad? And then you see it and think, well, it wasn’t so bad! It was kind of good! That person is so picky. Gosh, you think. But if that same person had told you it was a really good movie beforehand, you’d think it was the worst crap you’d ever seen in your life? You know what I speak of. Case in point the other evening with me and the blub. He watched The Dark Knight while I was at my knitting group last Thursday, and declared the movie the worst piece of crap he’d ever seen in his life. Then I watched it after he went to bed on Saturday. Eh, I thought. Not so bad. Distinctly lacking in plot, though. And the Joker, what about that guy? A scary villain yes, but what the hell was his motive? Sure, he said he wanted to be a agent of chaos or whatever, but why? Nowhere in the damn 2 hour long movie did they say why. It’s like Don John in Much Ado About Nothing. He sets out to break up Hero and Claudio’s wedding and just be a nasty guy in general but for poop’s sake what was his motive? Shakespeare should have known better than that. And now other people are pulling that kind of crap too! I hope you’re happy, Billy boy. Screwing up years of theatrical story-telling with your bad example. ANYway. I’m blathering. Moving on.)
Part III, Reel him in
Upon return from your trip, produce mostly done socks. Husband will declare to the high heavens that they are the most fabulously beautiful hand-knitted socks he has ever seen or ever will see in his life ever and he might as well gouge out his eyes now so he won’t be disappointed looking on a world of cruel hideousness after seeing such a sight.
Be wary, those who look upon me. You may now be unsatisfied with all other knitted items ever.
Apologize to husband about how they’re not quite finished, and tell him just how you slaved to get this (ahem) pair of socks this far. Sit down and continue work on them that very instant. After knitting quietly in the corner like a good, diligent wife for a bit, ask in a small and meek voice where your Valentine’s card is, that he promised to have waiting for you when you got back?
Watch him stammer.
Then sweetly say, that’s okay honey. I don’t need a silly little card. Although it would have been nice. I’m just going to keep knitting your socks. But after I take a break, okay? My hands are getting tired. But all this work is worth it; aren’t these socks just lovely?
Continue in this vein for the next few days, mentioning all along how much you love flowers. (But you might have to knit slowly, especially if your socks are like mine and knit at 7 stitches per inch on a size 2 needle. Lorna’s Laces Shepherd sport (in jeans!) makes for quick sock knitting.)
Finally, after much ado, finish. Show husband the socks. Let him try them on. Listen to him declare all over again that these socks must have descended from the heavens, and that you are an angel incarnate to knit such lovely, lovely things. Smile beatifically. Ask about flowers. Watch him stammer (again) that he just keeps forgetting and he’s so sorry he didn’t get you a Valentine and he will soon.
Say nothing, but remove the socks from his person. For blocking, you say.
Do actually block the socks. Let them dry, then leave them on your desk. (Where he never notices anything ever. I swear, I could leave a purple elephant in a bikini there for a week and he’d never see it.) Let them sit for a few days, waiting for flowers to appear. Continue to wait. Continue to wait.
Part IV, Give up
Give him the *#%@*$@ socks.
Watch him be happy. Take small joy in the fact that he doesn’t want to take them off. Hear him extol the socks for their stretchiness and comfort.
Listen as he praises the simple beauty of the slipped-stitch rib.
Then go out and buy yourself some damn flowers.
Kill Me With Death Socks (Rav me)
Pattern: Slipped stitch rib from Sensational Knitted Socks
Yarn: Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sport in jeans, 2 skeins
Needle: US 2, I think the larger size (2.5 mm)
Begun: March 24, 2008
Finished: February 22, 2009
And no, I never told him that I started these last year. What, you want me to give all my secrets away?
I have an assignment for you today.
It’s not hard, and there’s a potential reward at the end. Let me ‘splain.
So awhile ago, I made this hat.
In all fairness to the a) hat itself; and b) the pattern, it’s not a bad hat. I knit it out of double-stranded Malabrigo worsted, so it’s soft and nice. I did modify the pattern, Elizabeth by Jane Richmond (rav link), a bit–no cables, beaded rib instead of plain. It was just supposed to be a nice slouchy warm hat for those really cold days of winter–the days when my beloved Slouch For All Seasons isn’t warm enough.
Well, it *is* slouchy.
But, I dunno. I just don’t like it. It’s not cute. And it’s a bit too…purple. Maybe I’m getting over the purple thing, I dunno.
It just didn’t turn out the way that I’d hoped.
So when I finished it, a bit ago now, I slipped it on my head and was sad. The blub, noticing my sadness, asked me what was up.
“I just don’t really like this hat,” I said.
“Really?” he said. “Then can I have it?”
I stared at him for a few beats.
“It’s purple,” I finally said.
“So?” he answered.
Then he took it from my unbelieving hands and put it on. After checking himself out in the bathroom mirror, he sashayed back into the living room.
“I think it looks jaunty!” he said.
“Dude,” I said, “you look gay.”
“Do not!” he insisted.
We went back and forth like that for a bit. It didn’t make him look gay, he said, and besides what did I care? He has the right to look gay (even though he doesn’t, he said) if he wants to. I said that I wouldn’t be seen in public with him wearing that hat, because people would think he was my gay boyfriend, not my husband. Blah blah blah. The blub is a stubborn man. He budged from his stance not an inch. But I’m stubborn, too.
“Okay!” I said finally. “What if I let the blog decide?”
And he agreed.
So okay, loyal readers. What do you think? Jaunty?
Or gay Smurf?
And just for the record, that is how he normally wears his hats–pushed up and flopped over. And I guess to be fair, I should post all of the pictures I took of him in the hat, not just the gayest of them all. (Which he did on purpose, by the way. I told him it wouldn’t help his chances much, but apparently he was having too good a time to care.)
Is it just me, or does this last one look like Rosie the Riveter? Just more hairy.
Again, what you say goes. So leave me a comment. Tell me he doesn’t look gay, tell me he does look fruity but I should let him have the hat anyway, tell me to donate it to the women’s shelter, tell me to bury it in the backyard. Whatever the consensus is, I will obey. And here’s something to help you find your voices.
A skein of Louet KidLin laceweight to a commenter selected at random.
250 yards. Color: woodland. Mohair and linen blend. Sigh. I love this yarn, but I have to face the fact that I just can’t knit with it. Let my loss be your gain. Wouldn’t it make a beautiful springtime scarf?
Anyhoo, leave a comment by Friday, February 27th by 11:59 pm EST. I’ll announce the winner, and the verdict, next Sunday.
Okay, go. But please be honest. Even though my humiliation of being seen with this guy in public is in your hands.