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February 2008
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April 2008

actual knitting content, not mine

I did not knit this sweater.


My mother-in-law did. Pretty sweet, eh? Maddy loves it. A big huzzah to the MIL!

Wait, there's more to the story.

My MIL didn't even intend to knit this for the Diva. No, the Diva merely provided a reason to finish it. The sweater was started for my husband's sister, who is rapidly approaching 40.


This tickles me to no end. I have at least one kid sweater in the to-be-finished pile that is now waaaaay to small to fit either of my kids. If I'm lucky, I might get to finish one of them up for a grandkid.

As I was helping the Diva get dressed this morning, Scott casually mentioned another tidbit of info about this sweater. "I think," he said, "that this is the same yarn that my mom used to knit uteruses out of for her childbirth education classes."

I think I might wait a bit to explain that last piece of info to the Diva. Still, made me laugh.

many things make a post

- Listen to the bit about "Intentional Chocolate" and tell me if it sets off any bullshit detectors for you. Since I deal with undergrads all day, my bs sensors are easy to trip but -- are they serious? And what the heck does "Belief is Biology" even mean?

- From Ellen Kushner: Jews on Bikes. It's all about the underpants.

- For the Scot who has everything: Gummy Haggis.

- Another thing to add to the list of "Things I Don't Get About Kids Today:" Acting like an idiot promotes confidence.

- From The Atlantic: Shooting Britney. It's a cogent look at modern paparazzi and the cult of celebrity. What's amazing is the amount of money that's involved.

From the nut graf: "Between 30 and 45 paparazzi work Britney on any given night. The expensive cars they drive reflect the fact that Britney Spears—her marriages, custody battles, fights with her mom, new boyfriends, Starbucks runs, trips to the hospital—is a bigger and more lucrative story than Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton or John Lennon and Yoko Ono."

Then there's this graf, which is more lucid than I could ever dream of being: "Britney Spears departed the planet of normal bubblegum celebrity story lines and entered the heavenly realm of pop myth. America’s sweetheart had dramatically and publicly un-edited herself, removing the customary trappings and protections of celebrity to reveal the damaged psyche of a fractured person who was no longer able or willing to regulate her public behavior."

The whole piece is worth a read, if you have the time.


"David Mamet writes about becoming a conservative, with surprisingly little attention paid to how his place in the world -- as opposed to his thinking -- may have changed over the years. ... He further asserts that plays are made better if they lack a director; just like how societies are made better without government! This is something only a writer could say. I asked a theater person friend what happens if you remove a director from a play, and he said, "you are left with a passel of self-absorbed actors run amok." Not a bad description of what happens without a government in place, as well."

From this piece by Ana Marie Cox, my Husband's online crush

ETA: Escalators are like lions vis a vis the U.S.'s elderly. Or, at least, the U.S.'s really dim and impatient elderly.

today's post brought to you by the letter "f"

F is for flu, which is pretty much what I have. I went from feeling ill but OK on Monday afternoon to welcoming death by Monday night. Yesterday was a blur. Today I've been upright for almost three hours and actually took a shower but I think I might have overdone it. A nap is calling.

First, tho, Spitzer? Seriously? What is it with male politicians and their penises? Which is another ringing endorsement of why we need more women in office. While there will be scandals, they at least will be different sorts of scandals.

note to self - stop speaking

On the phone with my dad yesterday, I distinctly remember saying that, yes, right now, we are all healthy and well. That was my mistake.

Currently, the Boy has a fever and a sinus infection. I have some random crud. I actually had to let my 10 a.m. class out a little early because my nose was about to drip on the desk and I'd run out of tissues. Yum.

So, some pictures from the weekend, before the illness fell:

The Boy and his box:


Maddy and I made bracelets.


They couldn't be more simple. But I love the beads.


"Mine" is above. It's mine only because I was the one who strung it. Maddy wore both bracelets and considers them (and all future bracelets, frankly) hers.


It seemed like a good time was had by all.


Except the cats, naturally. They are still very cold.


Back to the couch. This may be TMI - but as an indication of how drippy I am, I currently have a wadded up tissue jammed into my right nostril because it is the only thing that keeps it from splattering my keyboard. Feh. Germs.


An earthquake measuring 5.2 on the Richter scale struck England and Wales, with its epicenter in Dudley; the event caused one couple, Rob Wilkinson, 19, and Charlotte Green, 17, to momentarily think that their lovemaking was special. “Did the earth,” Rob reportedly asked, “just move for you, darling?”

-- Harper's Weekly Review (March 4, 2008) by Paul Ford

Also -- I finally watched Stranger Than Fiction last night and it is a thoroughly charming film. Not sure why it didn't do better at the box office but suspect it has something to do with requiring the audience to have read a book.

Bonus quote, from the flick:

Dr. Jules Hilbert: Hell Harold, you could just eat nothing but pancakes if you wanted.
Harold Crick: What is wrong with you? Hey, I don't want to eat nothing but pancakes, I want to live! I mean, who in their right mind in a choice between pancakes and living chooses pancakes?
Dr. Jules Hilbert: Harold, if you pause to think, you'd realize that that answer is inextricably contingent upon the type of life being led... and, of course, the quality of the pancakes

many things make a post, plus knitting

Last night, I finished a hat.


What's important is not the hat itself, which is made mostly from scraps of other projects. There isn't some great new leap in hat technology hidden within. No, what's important is that I knitted this hat in the Continental style, as in with the yarn in my left hand. Usually, I'm a British knitter, that is, yarn in my right hand.


Why would anyone spend time learning how to do this? Because very soon I'm going to dive into the sweater project and it will be really helpful to be able to carry a strand in each hand. I seem to be able to do it now, even if it requires more concentration that I would have thought I even still had. But I can do it.

And if you're wondering to yourself -- why teach yourself another way to knit when the one way works? I say to you simply, why knit at all? why not just buy your hats at Wal-mart?

Anyhoo - that's all I have knitting-wise right now. More in the works.

Now, the many things that make a post:

* From this point forward, call me Cap'n Yvette Greenbeard, ye filthy bilgewater scum.

* It's a mutherfuckin' walk-off.

* For folks who live near me and have kids -- anyone up for a party where the sprouts dye some yarn with Kool Aid once the weather warms up? And it will warm up, yes?

* Because some days just call for Marge Piercy.

* Yet another reason why I want a Wegman's.

* I might have to make these right now: Easy but Decadent Apple Dumplings.

* And you thought Canadians were boring. Also from the NYT, your crochet skillz can save the world, or, at least a very small part of it.

* If you enjoyed "wake up cat," look at "let me in cat." It was the gnome that got me.

* Scott Miller! Knoxville music guru Todd Steed has a new tv show where he spotlights/interviews local musicians. If you've ever been curious about Mr Miller, watch the clip here. There'll be a short ad, then delightful music. No, it's not the same without a High Life and a smoke but still pretty dang good.

* All of the jewelry I cherish -- and it's not much because I don't live a life that calls for  bling -- is made by indie craftspeople. It's not a conscious choice, really, at least, it didn't start out as one. And now I've found another craftster to obsess about. Check out this custom piece, which might be the bracelet of my dreams (if in a different color scheme). There are also her regular collections. I still don't live a life where I'd have a need or place to wear any of this but I still lurve it. (Note: I am not subtly hinting that I would like any of this for my upcoming birthday. In fact, it might be better if I  don't ever own any of it because I'd then find myself inventing places/reasons to wear it, which would be both amusing and sad.)

baking with the diva

Somehow, I met yesterday's deadlines. I'm stunned, too. But let's all keep our fingers crossed for no more snow/ice events. Mama needs some spring, already.

Which is why Maddy and I made gluten-free sugar cookies this weekend.*

I found a box of Cherrybrook Kitchen's Sugar Cookie Mix in the recessed of the pantry. We followed the directions -- but used real butter and cow's milk rather than margarine and soy milk. Those two items would have required a trip to the store, which was more than we could commit to.

We also rolled the balls in fancy sugar that also happened to be in the pantry:


The end result:


As far as cookies go, I wish I would have cooked them longer. But I couldn't stand to hear "Are the cookies done yet" one more time.

As far as GF cookies go, well, the dough had that weird grit that can plague mixes with rice flour.** The crunchy sugar on the outside covers it up OK but it's still noticeable. The cookies also lacked structural integrity, which might have been a result of pulling them too soon. Hard to say. Overall, they were OK, in my opinion. The Diva loved them, though.

Next up on the sugar cookie front will be the Gluten-Free Girl's recipe.


* No, we didn't *really* make them because we need spring; it was just a good segue. They are covered in spring-themed sugar, which ought to count for something.

** Does anyone know of a super-duper finely milled rice flour that isn't sandy?


Because the Oneonta City School District is a bunch of pussies, there is an early dismissal today. Which means that the Diva won't be going at all because she had a dentist appointment* this a.m. and by the time I got her to school, she'd just have to leave.

The big problem is that I have work up to my eyeballs and deadline-a-palooza this week. All of the projects I've had to put off because of the last three weeks of weather delays are finally coming due. Arg. We're rapidly heading into drop-my-basket territory.

I intend to foist her off on the Pie Goddess and Grill Master this afternoon. I hate to do it but there are weeds and I am in them.

If anyone dares say that juggling kids and work is easy, well, then I might just have to punch said person in the neck. Very hard.

* Just a cleaning. She's fine and has three loose teeth, one of which is *thisclose* to popping right out. Hopefully the Tooth Fairy pillow I ordered on etsy gets here before that tooth...