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September 2004
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November 2004

yesterday was a fine day

First, the child got to romp in the huge pile o' leaves:
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Second, I got caught up on a couple of knitting projects -- the Everyday Cardi is blocking as we speak and I finished a very late birthday gift for a friend, who will receive said gift today -- and got a few papers graded.

Third, and most wonderfully, my Secret Pal struck again. Her final gift was a doozy.


Enclosed are some nifty gadgets that I'd always eyeballed but never committed to, a copy of EZ's Knitting Without Tears (which is an amazing reference that I'd wanted for quite a while), and a stunning silk scarf kit from Habu Textiles.

(Forgive the picture. We're having a low-light day here.)

Two attempts to capture the color. It's really somehere in between. And sooooooft.

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Again I must say, thanks Secret Pal!

Leaves and swag. Sweet.

electing a pres, more.

It can't be a good sign that I've started to obsessively check Slate's Election Scorecard. I just want to know if I'm going to have to look into Canadian citizenship. It's good to plan ahead, right?

Perhaps the only upside to this presidential nail-biter is that I live in New York State, which has been locked up for Kerry since the summer. And while I think Kerry is a good thing and all, the real perk is that we haven't been subjected to any campaign ads. I pity the folks in swing states who are being bombarded by them. Not sure how one copes with living with the attacks on a quarter-hourly basis. I suppose you drink heavily.

the picture fairy

Here is RPO, who is looking hale and hearty.


I didn't take all that many pictures this weekend. Too busy talking, frankly, to fuss with a camera.

And even with all the talking I didn't get to spend as much time with anyone as I wanted to. That's what I want for Christmas, by the way -- more time. Surely Santa can get that in my stocking?

If you'd like to see more, scroll down and look at the top album in the left sidebar. Let me know if you'd like any copies.

"Shell corn, bind holder, belt, knife, coolers, map, cellphone, hunting license, say goodbye to wife, kill deer, Mt. View Motel, kill deer."

Pictures coming but first this, a column by Amanda Hesser about grocery lists that is about a lot more than grocery lists. The inspiration is Bill Keaggy's site, but the column also talks about the growing divide between foodies and convenience-ies while making a points about the strange habits of almost everyone who eats, which is almost everyone.

Oh -- and if you can't access the NYT site, try gacking a password from

Must go beat more laundry into submission. Send reinforcements if you don't hear from me in 24 hours.

a silence

This past weekend, I went here to do this, specifically the bits that had to do with the 75th Anniversary of the Playshop. Hell, I didn't even remember about the football game, which means that my record of never seeing a game there remains intact.

A good time was had by all. The Diva did well, but did come utterly and completely unglued once we got home after Sunday's six hour drive. Hard to complain, tho, when she was so very sweet until that point.

It was v. v. cool to see everyone again. Pictures will be posted once I can get a couple of loads of laundry done, class notes ready and delivered, mail sorted, papers graded and groceries bought. So soon (ha!), one hopes.

And for the dozen people who asked, Oneonta is here. Note its middle-of-nothing-ness.

two little girls

By Josephine Jacobsen, from In the Crevice of Time: New & Collected Poems © Johns Hopkins University Press, 2000

you can take it with you

2 little girls who live next door
to this house are on their trampoline.
the window is closed, so they are soundless.

the sun slants, it is going away;
but now it hits full on the trampoline
and the small figure on each end.

alternately they fly up to the sun,
fly, and rebound, fly, are shot
up, fly, are shot up up.

one comes down in the lotus
position. the other, outdone,
somersaults in air. their hair

flies too. nothing, nothing, noth
ing can keep keep them down. the air
sucks them up by the hair of their heads.

i know all about what is
happening in this city at just
this moment, every last

grain of dark, i conceive.
but what i see now is
the 2 little girls flung up

flung up, the sun snatch
ing them, their mouths rounded
in gasps. they are there, they fly up.

Stolen from The Writer's Almanac.

the pal strikes again


Got this big box o' treats in the mail this afternoon from my inspired Secret Pal. Enclosed is a copy of Steve Almond's Candyfreak, a book that languished on my Amazon Wish List for months. Also enclosed are dozens of pieces of candy, from Smarties to Hersheys to a handful of stuff I have never before seen, much less tasted.

There is just one thing in there that I've not shown you. I'm sorry. I tried to wait but it called to me. How could anyone resist a candybar called "Violet Crumble?" Yeah, me neither.


Allegedly, it is Australia's Crisp Golden Honeycomb. It is one of the stranger candies I think I've ever had. It tastes nothing like honey, really. What it tastes like is freeze-dried ice cream covered in chocolate. The first bite is rather styrofoamish in terms of texture but ... it makes you want to take another bite, if only to prove that the first was really as odd as you thought. Then, suddenly, the candy is gone. And you want more, because it was just so dang tasty, if, admittedly, odd.

Thanks Secret Pal! I can't wait to see what some of these other goodies taste like...

now with more Shrub

It’s not cute, and it’s not funny, and it’s not religion. George Bush is running national policy on faith—but it’s not faith in God. It’s become something far stranger and more idolatrous.

What he’s put his faith in is George W. Bush, which is not the same thing as saying he believes in himself. He can’t believe in himself; he knows he doesn’t know anything. But instead of seeking more information and better counsel, he’s abandoned the frustrations of dealing with the factual, external universe. He’s now basing everything on the instincts of George W. Bush. That’s where the smirk comes from.

Once again, I bow before Teresa Nielsen Hayden and her clear-eyed cogentness.