Sunday, September 30, 2007

Starting to Jaywalk.

It simply CANNOT already be October 1 and Monday AGAIN. I just don't know where the time goes!

This was a pretty good weekend. Friday night, the weekend kicked off with a Bad Girls Knitting Night at the LYS. There was liquor, munchies and lots of knitting. I had a great time! And no some yarn did not jump into my hands.... not even a little bit (well ok I bought a few things for my secret pal, but that's it!)

Saturday my mom and I met up to do some wedding planning. I think I found the dress I want. We visited two stores and I found two dresses, both of which are vastly different from each other, but upon reflection last night, one of them is the one I see myself in on my wedding day. All of a sudden it's starting to get very real. I'm getting married!!! I'm not going to post pictures here because I want to think about it some more, and also because I want the pictures I post to be of me in the dress on my wedding day. Guess you'll all just have to hold out.

Saturday night was movie night with my honey. Poor guy has been working out like crazy to train for a half marathon in Kansas City in a few weeks, and he had run 13 miles earlier in the day so he was a bit tired, but we had a good "date night" anyway.

Today was chores: laundry, starting to weed out the junk in my place (I think my stuff has sex and multiplies when I'm not looking!), and back up my computer. I also managed to watch the second season of Weeds on DVD which was fantastic! Mary Louise Parker is excellent and the writers really come up with some great stuff.

Finally, there was knitting. The title comes from my new project, Grumperina's Jaywalkers, which is coming along nicely. I had a few balls of Koigu left over from a different project and this seemed like a stripey way to go! I also put in some time on a baby blanket I'm working on. Unfortunately I'm a little stalled on the dress I'm working on. I got all the way up to where the arm shaping comes in (working from the hem line upwards) but the decreasing in pattern isn't working at all, so I'm contemplating it while I work on the other projects that ARE working. Sound like procrastination anyone?

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Friday, September 28, 2007

Occasional Perks

Although I seem to complain about my job, some days it's just really cool to work here. Today we got a perk courtesy of the fact that we have CREATIVE in our title. Today in the spirit of creative and artistic endeavors, we got to view the movie Breach at work, followed by an hour Q&A with the film's writer and director Billy Ray. Let me say that even before the Mr. Ray uttered his first words, I was entranced by the movie. I don't know what rock I was hiding under when this case broke, but I really didn't know the true story going in to see the movie. While the story itself is compelling, intriguing and scary, the acting was amazing. Chris Cooper is genuinely moving, and portrays a man that we should justifiably hate for his treasonous acts with such complex character and passion. Ryan Phillipe and Laura Linney round out this excellent cast, and their performances are no less inspiring. I would highly recommend this movie!

After the movie concluded, Mr. Ray graciously sat with us for over an hour and spoke about his influences in writing and directing this movie, how the script changed throughout (45 drafts!) and explored the basic (and incredibly complicated) art of bringing a story to life.

And all this occurred during normal business hours and counted as part of my work day. Can't beat that!

(As a side note, Mr. Ray is currently working on the script for the remake of Westworld - a favorite of my father's, and the first movie that genuinely scared me so badly I barely slept for days.)

ETA - We also dined on all 4 of the major food groups today: Popcorn, Pizza, Ice Cream and Cake. We did miss the tuna group!

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Friday Funnies

1. Santa Claus he is not.

BERLIN (Reuters) - A German man who had been drinking heavily at Munich's Oktoberfest beer festival got stuck in a chimney for 12 hours while trying to climb into a friend's apartment, police said on Friday. More here.

2. Are we going back to pencil and paper?

SEATTLE - Microsoft Corp.'s Excel 2007 spreadsheet program is going to have to relearn part of its multiplication table.

In a blog post, Microsoft employee David Gainer said that when computer users tried to get Excel 2007 to multiply some pairs of numbers and the result was 65,535, Excel would incorrectly display 100,000 as the answer. More here.

3. Something's screwy

BERLIN (Reuters) - A German factory worker stole over a million screws from his employer and skewed the market with his cheap stolen goods, police said Friday.

Over two years, the 33-year-old assembly plant worker smuggled between 2,000 and 7,000 screws out of work each night, and auctioned them on an Internet site, police said. More here.

P.S. Let's hope he stole the screws from the inventory and not from whatever he was putting together!


Thursday, September 27, 2007

A taste of OZ

Tonight my friend Blenda from Oz took a group of us to see Oz City Song Circle perform at The Mint. Basically it's a night where Australian artists living in Southern California perform. Tonight it was 4 talented artists up on the stage, and they sang in turn. There were two in particular that were amazing: Lee Coulter and Chantelle Barry. Lee Coulter displayed such an amazing variety of music tonight - of the three songs he sang all were different genres.

As a side note, I love that B and I have become such good friends and that she's been taking me all these places! All these years I lived here largely ignorant of the music scene and now it's like a whole world opening up. I'll keep ya posted on my new tunes.

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Project: Wedding

Mission: To get hitched in style.


Location, location, location.
Hotel for guests.
Wedding website (early stages).

In Progress:

Guest list.
Save the date cards. (Please help me I'm trapped in font hell.)

Still to do:

Everything else! Oh should I be more specific?

Party favors.

to name a few...


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The Cliche Rotation Project

The Cliche Rotation Project is Defective Yeti's invention, and his endeavor to keep things fresh. Tired of the old adages? Create some new ones! My favorites for example:

Old: Timing is everything

New: Timing is the difference between salad and garbage

Old: Not the sharpest crayon in the box

New: Not the brightest LED in the house

So get your cliche on folks!


Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Karmic Retribution

So tonight I was at Knitmeister S's enjoying TV night. While he was playing with the kitties on his spiral staircase, I MIGHT have told a story about another friend of ours who fell down those steps at his place. And I MIGHT have laughed a little about it. (In my defense, when she first told me, she was laughing too.)

After television, I went home and lived happily every after.

Well.... not quite.

Then I fell out of the elevator.

How, you might ask, did I come to fall OUT of an elevator? Well I'll show you. In the diagram below you will notice that the elevator car has not stopped flush with the floor, but rather lingers several scary inches above it.

So I MIGHT have missed that crucial step down and ended up on the tile floor in a nice SPLAT.

That Karma.... ya just never know when she's going to open up a can of whoopass on ya.

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Professors are Funny.

Via email

Me: I will need a picture for our program - if you have a headshot you would like me to use please send it to me. Otherwise I will be forced to resort to whatever I can find on the web. :)

Professor: Attached. (Can you make me better looking? I would be most grateful.)

Me: Pick a movie star you would like and I'll substitute.

Professor: George Clooney.

Me: Done.

Sometimes working in academia is a fun business.


Crossword Puzzle Romance

Crossword puzzle solved with a hitch

BOSTON - It was the crossword puzzle fan's version of getting his marriage proposal plastered on a stadium Jumbotron.

Aric Egmont and Jennie Bass were working on a puzzle titled "Popping the question" in the latest issue of The Boston Globe Sunday magazine. Bass spotted her sister's name and her best friend's name, but initially thought it was just a coincidence.

Then they got to 111 across: "Generic proposal" (Jen + Aric generic). The answer: "Will you marry me?"

"We get to the `Will you marry me?' clue, and I said, `Will you marry me, Jenny?' I got up, got the ring, and got down on one knee and she screamed, and hugged me. It took her a minute to say yes," Egmont told the Globe.

Egmont, 29, of Cambridge, contacted the magazine this summer to ask if the people who create the crossword puzzles would write a special puzzle for him.

Emily Cox and Henry Rathvon, a married puzzle-writing team who have been writing Globe magazine crossword puzzles for years, agreed. Their puzzle included several variations on proposals; for example, "Macrame artist's proposal" was "Let's tie the knot."

The tricky part was writing an entire puzzle that would be clear to the happy couple, but not obscure to all the other readers who do the puzzles.

Bass, 29, said there was no reason for her to suspect anything when they started doing the puzzle.

"Then he got up and came back with a box and it was pure elation," she said.


What exactly was the point?

So I heard about President Ahmadinejad's visit to the United States, and specifically Columbia University, and thought that it was an odd move. I certainly don't have respect for the man, nor do I agree with just about anything he says, but in the interest of academic freedom and debate, I figured "now this is an interesting proposition." I wondered what the University hoped to accomplish. Well, not very much as it turns out.

Ahmadinejad questions 9/11, Holocaust

NEW YORK - Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad defended Holocaust revisionists and raised questions about who carried out the Sept. 11 attacks in a tense showdown Monday at Columbia University, where the school's head introduced the hard-line leader by calling him a "petty and cruel dictator."

Ahmadinejad portrayed himself as an intellectual and argued that his administration respected reason and science. But the former engineering professor, appearing shaken and irate over he called "insults" from his host, soon found himself drawn into the type of rhetoric that has alienated American audiences in the past.

He provoked derisive laughter by responding to a question about Iran's execution of homosexuals by saying: "In Iran we don't have homosexuals like in your country ... I don't know who's told you that we have this."

Ahmadinejad drew audience applause at times, such as when he bemoaned the plight of the Palestinians. But he often declined to offer the simple answers the audience sought, responding instead with his own questions or long statements about history and justice.

Ahmadinejad has in the past called for Israel's elimination. But his exact remarks have been disputed. Some translators say he called for Israel to be "wiped off the map," but others say that would be better translated as "vanish from the pages of time" — implying Israel would disappear on its own rather than be destroyed.

Ahmadinejad's past statements about the Holocaust also have raised hackles in the West, and were soundly attacked by Bollinger.

"In a December 2005 state television broadcast, you described the Holocaust as the fabricated legend," Bollinger told Ahmadinejad said in his opening remarks. "One year later, you held a two-day conference of Holocaust deniers."

Bollinger said that might fool the illiterate and ignorant.

"When you come to a place like this, it makes you simply ridiculous. The truth is that the Holocaust is the most documented event in human history," he said.

Ahmadinejad said he wasn't passing judgment on whether the Holocaust occurred, but that, "assuming this happened, what does it have to do with the Palestinian people?"

Now let it be known that I fundamentally disagree with just about everything out of this man's mouth. And it's not even that I disagree with what Dr. Bollinger had to say. It's just that I wonder exactly what the point was? Why invite a speaker who so clearly repudiates everything that American academic institutions stand for? And even if one is so inclined to start a serious debate, why ruin it by regressing to antagonistic rhetoric? Really: what IS the point?

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Monday, September 24, 2007

Not my family.

A few months ago I received an email in my Gmail inbox. I thought it was spam, but actually it appeared that someone had mis-emailed me, when intending to email another family member. I was one of many who received the email, and decided to ignore it, as it wasn't meant for me. BIG MISTAKE.

Within a few weeks I had an inbox full of replies to this mass email - all of them discussing Aunt Pearl's surgery, the twins, etc. Finally I got up the gumption to reply to all and let them know that they had reached me by mistake. I felt guilty for having let it go on so long, and really wanted them to know that they weren't reaching whoever they intended to reach.

Well now it has been several more weeks. I never did get a reply to my email, and yet my inbox still fills up with emails from this family. And now it's just getting to be sort of a pain because as much as I hope that Aunt Pearl fully recovers, I'm not really interested in being in on everything going on in this family.

Clearly someone somewhere is having a good laugh over this.


Sunday, September 23, 2007

Another weekend gone.

This weekend, was as usual, composed of relaxing, knitting and movies. I was ready to lay low for a bit and the rainy weather on Friday definitely fit my mood. Saturday I sept at the knitting store. Sunday I went for coffee with a friend and grocery shopping. Otherwise it was movies and knitting.

As you can see I finished another few sets of blocks on the Modern Quilt Wrap. At this point I'm at the half way mark. I also started working on another charity blanket - #12! - another little star in some great baby yarn I have had stashed away, waiting for the right time to play. I love how it's coming out!

Lastly, I watched an incredible movie tonight - Water. It is the story of two young Indian widows, one only seven, and the other in her late teens or early twenties. It chronicles what the lives of widows are like in India and how they survive. Although incredibly sad, the movie manages not to be a downer, just a poignant beautiful film. I would highly recommend it. (And the soundtrack is fabulous - I can't wait to buy it!)

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Saturday, September 22, 2007

Hugh Laurie Trivia

"When Hugh Laurie, Jamie Denton, Greg Grunberg, Bob Guiney, and Bonnie Somerville performed at the TV Guide Emmy Party, they asked for, and received, $200,000 that was split equally and donated to charity. The band, called Band From TV, will now be making special appearances. Hugh will donate most of his share to the Save The Children organization."

Heard on the Tonight Show, found here.

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Friday, September 21, 2007

A Man I Never Knew

For the past week around the office, much talk has been centered around a man who I have never met. He is a professor and a world class expert in the industry of games technology and education. Working at USC for the past 5 years, I have heard his name in passing as an author and expert. I have also heard of people who loved him, and people who didn't like him so much. About a year ago, I heard something else. A colleague of mine, who had worked with Dr. Pausch (at Carnegie Mellon University) told me that he had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and was not expected to live. As tragedy does, it intrigued me. I followed news of his progress with his disease and was disheartened to hear that he wasn't doing well. I knew he was much too young and that he would leave behind many students and colleagues, and a young family.

On Tuesday afternoon Professor Randy Pausch gave his final lecture entitled "Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams" to a full lecture hall, and reached many more via teleconference and simulcast. The lecture is recorded here on YouTube. More information can also be found in this piece from the Pittsburgh Tribune. The lecture is long (a little over an hour) but it is alternately touching, funny, and a testament to his brilliance, his work as a humanitarian and his refusal to give up the fight. It is a fitting remembrance to a great man and one that will remain for his young children. It's not an easy watch, but it is definitely worth the time.


The biggest dork ever.

Has anyone else seen the "Fair Isle Month at Old Navy" commercial? How many of you thought... hmmm I should really knit one of those? C'mon. I know you knitters are out there!

For my part I want to knit this and this.


Thursday, September 20, 2007

Crazy few days...

The last two days I've spent a considerable amount of time on main campus, in meetings and classes, without my computer (hence the lack of posting). Yesterday I attended a meeting to prepare for USC's annual Good Neighbors Campaign. If you're ever looking for a good place to donate a few extra dollars - this is a great campaign aimed at improving the lives of kids and their families in downtown Los Angeles. Every cent you donate goes to the programs; all administrative costs are covered by the University.

Today I attended a Project Management class. Although I've covered most of the materials throughout the course of my MBA, I'm interested in putting it all together and developing myself as a project manager, so I enrolled in the class. The material was interesting, and I'm taking the follow-on courses in a few weeks.

Other than that it's been a quiet two days. Knitting night was last night, and I'm making progress on a variety of projects including a dress for me, and the amazing quilt wrap from Folk Style. I'm looking forward to weekend (as always!) The only thing standing in between me and a great weekend of relaxing and knitting is one long to-do list for tomorrow. Wish me luck in getting through and I'll provide more humor tomorrow!

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Wednesday, September 19, 2007


Ahoy ye scallywags. Today be Talk Like a Pirate Day. So bring out ye eyepatches or ye swashbucklers will be walking the plank. If ye want more instruction ye need consult the official website. Avast me hearties... may there be much rum and taking of wenches tonight!

P.S. Who among ye needs a better excuse to dress like a pirate or drool over ye heartthrob Johnny Depp?

P.P.S. I be Knittin' like a Pirate.

P.P.P.S. I NEED one of these.


Tuesday, September 18, 2007

It's all about the stupid.

No drug, not even alcohol, causes the fundamental ills of society. If we're looking for the source of our troubles, we shouldn't test people for drugs, we should test them for stupidity, ignorance, greed and love of power.

-P.J. O'Rourke


This is me.

Nightmare on E-Street

Sometimes booking travel online can make travelers wish they'd stayed home

Let me add my voice to the many many many others about how booking through Travelocity is a BAD BAD BAD idea.

Back in August I went to book flights for my family to travel to Kansas in December for Wes' graduation. I selected flights that most closely fit our schedules and went ahead and purchased. All was hunky dory.

Except a few weeks later I got that dreaded "Your itinerary has changed" email. Apparently Midwest Airlines had changed its schedule and Travelocity, in its infinite wisdom, had booked us a connecting flight with only a 35 minute layover. Sensing that this was going to be a problem, I called Travelocity right away to make a change. I was informed that since my "connection time was still valid" there would be no changing things. Since I knew that if our flight got in late and we missed our connecting flight the airline would probably just rebook us, I asked about what the later options were. I was informed there would be a few flights later in the day. Ok, not happy, but I'll deal.

Fast forward to last night. Another glorious "Your Itinerary has changed" email. Only this time we have FIVE MINUTES to make our connecting flight. Time to call Travelocity again... they told me that the connection time was still valid and that to change the trip I would have to pay $130 per person. Further, the next flight is a mere 7 hours later. So I asked them to cancel the connecting flight all together and credit me for the difference. (We can get a rental car!) Nope - this will also cost $130 per person and we won't get any of the money credited back. You're kidding right? What kind of service is this?? This isn't me changing my mind - this is an impossible flight!

So I decide to call the airlines. WHAT A DIFFERENCE! They immediately transfer me to the schedule change desk. The guy looks at my reservation and says "oh no, your first connection won't work at all!" I repeat what the Travelocity people have told me and he says "HAHA yeah we don't have very much luck working with them on these kinds of situations." The man rebooks my departing flight so I will definitely make my connection. At no charge. Apologizes for the problems and wishes me a nice day. How hard was that? Apparently very. I think I'll be flying Midwest from now on. And banishing Travelocity from my list of options.


And the music wars escalate...

From Slashdot:

A few months ago, Trent Reznor (frontman of the band Nine Inch Nails), was in Australia doing an interview when he commented on the outrageous prices of CDs there. Apparently now his label, Universal Media Group is angry at him for having said that. During a concert last night, he told fans, '...Has anyone seen the price come down? Okay, well, you know what that means — STEAL IT. Steal away. Steal and steal and steal some more and give it to all your friends and keep on stealin'. Because one way or another these mother****ers will get it through their head that they're ripping people off and that's not right.'"


Monday, September 17, 2007

Another thank you to my SP!

On Friday night my secret pal graciously gifted me with a certificate to The Loopy Ewe. I eagerly went over there and picked out a beautiful skein of sock yarn. Since it was late Friday night, I didn't really expect my order to be processed until today, and figured the yarn might arrive by the end of the week if I was lucky. NOPE! Sheri processed my order early Saturday morning and by midday today I had my lovely yarn in the my hot little hands. The yarn is Perchance to Knit and there's a lovely Swarovski crystal stitch marker that matches it! So thanks again to my SP - now I just need to find a great pattern and off I go!


Stupid is as stupid does.

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."

--Albert Einstein

RIPPED from today's headlines:

1. Scary Stupid: "Dead" man wakes up under autopsy knife

2. From the man who got off and then wrote the book "IF I did it..." : OJ Simpson Charged in Alleged Robbery

3. Bizarre stupid: Couple divorce after online 'affair' - Get this, they had an online affair with EACH OTHER, and are now divorcing because their spouses cheated on them.

4. Injurious stupid: 'Mooning' teen struck in head by boat propeller


Sunday, September 16, 2007

Hey Hey We're the Monkies!

All complete - Cookie's Monkey Socks in Socks that Rock, Jewel of the Nile Colorway. The pattern is great although I had to modify the heel and foot to fit my small-ish feet. These were an easy knit and even got a little work in the presence of the Yarn Harlot!


Saturday, September 15, 2007

A Yarn Harlot Day

Today was Yarn Harlot Day in Los Angeles. Yes, Stephanie Pearl McPhee made an appearance at the LA Public Library downtown promoting her new book "Stephanie Pearl McPhee Casts Off." She was a riot! Really personable, very nice, and very funny. It was a blast hanging out with knitting friends from all over southern California, enjoying our craft and just having fun. And, even though I've lived here, all my life I'd never been to the LA Public Library - it was gorgeous!


Friday, September 14, 2007

A HUGE thank you to my SP!

Tonight I checked my email and found the best SP gift - a gift certificate to The Loopy Ewe! This is a great shop that I've been eying for a while with fabulous sock yarns, and patterns and accessories. The only problem is that now I have to decide what to get!

A HUGE thank you to my SP! (And seriously - visit the Loopy Ewe - it's fantastic!



Disclaimer: If you don't like cursing, stop reading now. Sorry Dad!

It's Friday and I'm making words up. From my chat history:

"There's another grant that I have to 'un-fuck up.'"

Clearly it is time to go home.


Friday Funny: Can you show this at work?


A little cleanup.

I realized the other day that I barely look at my blogroll any more. I have all my daily reads in my Google Reader and I rarely venture beyond that. So I've cleaned up the sidebar a bit, removed some of the images, and added all the people I read to my list. The list is very much indicative of my tastes: full of knitting, humor, creative individuals and great writers. And ok there's a slight bent towards parents with really cute children too. If I've missed you let me know and I'll add you right on in!

Excuse my dust.


Almost a dozen....

Eleven months ago now I said I was going to try and make a charity blanket a month for a year. Well I haven't made one a month, but I have one more month to go and this marks 11. I think I can do it! The only problem is how to top myself next year. ;)

I give you Charity Blanket #11: Starry Starry Night


Thursday, September 13, 2007

Notes to myself.

1. Someday, when you have the money and the time, you NEED to learn how to play the acoustic guitar because aside from the great music you can play, girls with guitars are SEXY.


The only thing I have to say about Thursday.

P.S. I love his cute little slippers.

P.P.S. Happy birthday to Knitmeister S! He's joining the quarter century club today.


Tonight was...

in a word AMAZING. (And I'm pretty hard to please!)

The evening began when A Fine Frenzy opened. Though I hadn't heard them before, they were quite good. The lead singer, Alison Sudol, has a really great voice and the instrumentation with drums and various synthesizers was really cool.

But Brandi Carlile was AMAZING. I can't even remember all of her set but it was really well put together. I've been listening to her albums for the past few days, and I have to say that not too much jumped out at me. Live, however, I was riveted. Her music style is pretty unique; she mixes bluegrass, country, and rock.

She performed her older stuff (even admitting she got her start as the opening act for Hanson - MMMBOP!), and peppered the set with new material. She switched back and forth among her acoustic guitar, a second amped acoustic, and her electric guitar. AND she opened playing the piano. She rocked the house, along with her two fellow guitarists ("the twins"), her cellist, her keyboardist and her drummer. After over an hour and a half of playing, she closed her concert with "The Story," which is my favorite song. Let me tell you - if you enjoy the recording, the live version is 200% more emotional and charged.

THEN she came back for a curtain call. She did what I've not seen any other band do - she played Johnny Cash's Folsom Prison Blues. The sound isn't great on that clip, but she and the band were just incredible. They took a big instrumental break in the middle and brought the house down. She followed up with one more older song, then a new one - an incredibly amazing heart-wrenching ballad which she performed by herself with her un-mic'd acoustic. I HOPE HOPE HOPE it's going to make her next album. Finally she closed with "Hallelujah".

Tonight was a definite don't miss - I'm glad we didn't!


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

I'd love to stay and chat BUT...

I have tickets to the Brandi Carlile concert at House of Blues tonight. We're leaving work at 5:30 and heading up there for a good southern/cajun dinner and then a night of entertainment. I'll be hanging with Knitmeister S and Bel and hopefully it will go better than that last concert I tried to attend there.

If you don't know who I'm talking about give this a listen. Hope y'all have a good night!

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Red Scarf 2008

The Red Scarf Project is a project of the Orphan Foundation of America. OFA, found at, collects red (and other unisex-colored) scarves to send in Valentine's Day care packages to college students who have aged out of foster care. These brave young people are going it on their own and trying to improve their lives and the community by attending college.

I first found out about this project last year, right at the deadline, and this year eagerly checked Norma's site to make this year's deadline. To make this scarf I used some TLC Amore in Red and some Knitpicks wool in Firecracker Heather. Then I used all the samples I have of yummy fuzzy and novelty yarns to give it a little pizazz. I wasn't sure how I was going to like it, but I do! Now I can't wait to do a bunch more in other colors.

So if you're a knitter, check out the Red Scarf Project!


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

9/11 Remembered

Every year on this day I'm not sure what to write. I don't want to let it go by without acknowledging it, and simply posting funny articles doesn't feel right.

I will never forget that morning. The phone ringing so early. My co-worker's voice in my ear demanding that I turn on the TV. Sleepily watching the TV and thinking that what I was looking at couldn't possibly be real. The way we were all shell-shocked and glued to the television for a few days. The way the world became a closer-knit, nicer place for a few days: people said hi in the street, and we all comforted each other.

I wish I could say that where we are today (the state of the world, the Iraq situation) honors those who died on 9/11 and those who put themselves at risk to rescue people in need. All I do know is that today is a day where WE can honor those people and never forget.


Monday, September 10, 2007

Things I might hate myself for in the morning.

1. I REALLY want a pair of crocs.

They are the ugliest shoes I may ever have seen. They are plastic. And they are SO comfortable.

I tried on a co-workers last week and I may be hooked. And look at the cute Mary Jane's that will show off all my beautiful knitted socks. AND they are antibacterial so if you have sweaty feet, and I do (oh the romance!), your shoes won't smell.

BUT, I might have to shoot myself... a little.


Pay it Forward

I found this on Twisted Knitster's blog a few weeks ago and eagerly signed up!

The idea is simple, based on the movie Pay it Forward. I will knit a gift for the first 3 people who sign up in the comments section or email me. Then those 3 people will "pay it forward" and make a crafty gift for three people who sign up with them! You don't have to be a knitter - just be creative and gift someone something crafty.

The nice thing about this is that there isn't really an official deadline. You sign up and I'll send you something in the next year. You have a year to create your own gifts. It's not intended to be a big gift - just a little handmade something to lift someone's spirits.


The Silver Screen

This weekend was spent (mostly) knitting and watching movies. There was a bit of activity in there - pole dancing at the new studio and some sushi - but otherwise it was pure relaxation. I watched the following treats:

Shinobi - This is a Japanese retelling of the Romeo & Juliet story in the 1600s in Japan. A boy and a girl from warring Japanese ninja clans living in the mountains meet. The cinematography is amazing in this movie, and just the style of the film is unlike anything I've seen before. A definite recommend!

The Groomsmen - Think about having a wedding and then think about how dysfunctional family can be and you have this movie! From the creators of The Brothers McMullen this movie was uncomfortable and touching at the same time. It gave us a few nightmares about our own wedding, but hopefully none of them will come to pass!

The Painted Veil - Edward Norton and Naomi Watts bring this film to life. It is the story of a bacteriologist in London who volunteers to go to China during the cholera epidemic. As the story unfolds you see how two people can be both cruel and tender to each other. I really liked this one.

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Friday, September 07, 2007

I don't know whether to laugh or cry.

Bush shows gift of gaffe at APEC summit

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Even for someone as gaffe-prone as U.S. President George W. Bush, he was in rare form on Friday, confusing APEC with OPEC and transforming Australian troops into Austrians.

Bush's tongue started slipping almost as soon as he started talking at a business forum on the eve of an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Sydney.

"Mr. Prime Minister, thank you for your introduction," he told Prime Minister John Howard. "Thank you for being such a fine host for the OPEC summit."

As the audience of several hundred people erupted in laughter, Bush corrected himself and joked, "He invited me to the OPEC summit next year." Australia has never been a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries.

Later in his speech, Bush recounted how Howard had gone to visit "Austrian troops" last year in Iraq. There are, in fact, no Austrian troops there. But Australia has about 1,500 Australians military personnel in and around the country.

Upon finishing his speech, Bush took the wrong way off-stage and, looking slightly perplexed, had to be re-directed by Howard to a center-stage exit.

But not before a veteran White House correspondent seized the opportunity to ask Bush whether there had been any new message in his speech. Apparently misunderstanding the question, he bristled and asked, "Haven't you been listening to my past speeches?" before turning away.


Thursday, September 06, 2007

Clapotis, c'est fini!

I started knitting my Clapotis when Wes and I left on vacation exactly 1 month ago. After I figured out the pattern, it was a relatively easy knit. I noticed in the last week or so that it felt like I'd been knitting this a really long time. I realized why today. I present to you all 110 inches of Clapotis. For reference that's just short of double my height. I knit it in a beautiful Regia bamboo sock yarn (only 650 yards - the pattern called for 800!) and ended up with a beautiful wrap. More photos when she is done blocking!


Dirty Jobs Quotables

Mike Rowe: "On a scale of 1 to 10, how do you think I'm doing?"

Supervisor: "I don't think suck is on that scale."

Mike Rowe: "So you're saying suck isn't a number?"


Nukes, Popcorn Lung and Pavarotti.

Today I found that I have an excess of articles to post. In an effort to not make you, my dear reader(s), die of boredom, I'm going to excerpt from them. I call this Nukes, popcorn lung and Pavarotti. Here goes:

1. In the height of absurdity:

'Popcorn lung patient' inhaled fumes daily

CENTENNIAL, Colo. - Wayne Watson loved microwave popcorn so much he would eat at least two bags each night, breathing in the steam from the just-opened package, until doctors told him it may have made him sick.

Watson, whose case of "popcorn lung" is the sole reported case of the disease in a non-factory worker, said he is convinced his heavy consumption of popcorn caused his health problems.

Who consumes 2 or more bags of microwave popcorn daily? Popcorn lung is the least of your concerns... how about Blocked Artery and Sky high Cholesterol and Blood Pressure? But this is my favorite part:

Watson said he still craves popcorn but has taken his doctors' advice and snacks now on fruits and vegetables. He said his breathing has improved and he's lost 35 pounds. He no longer uses an inhaler or takes steroids.

DUDE. Two words for you: AIR POPPER.

2. This one is absurd, bizarre and truly scary:

Air Force Mistakenly Transports Live Nukes Across America

"Surely the late Stanley Kubrick is somewhere smiling at this one. has a story about a B-52 Bomber that mistakenly flew 6-nuclear tipped cruise missles across several states last week. The 3-hour flight took the plane from Minot Air Force Base, N.D, to Barksdale Air Force Base, La., on Aug. 30. The incident was so serious that President Bush and Defense Secretary Robert Gates were quickly informed and Gates has asked for daily briefings on the Air Force probe, said Defense Department press secretary Geoff Morrell."

I'm not sure I want to think about this one.

3. And finally some sad news:

Italian tenor Pavarotti dies at 71

ROME - Luciano Pavarotti, opera's biggest superstar of the late 20th century, died Thursday. He was 71. He was the son of a singing baker and became the king of the high C's.

"The Maestro fought a long, tough battle against the pancreatic cancer," Robson said. "In fitting with the approach that characterised his life and work, he remained positive until finally succumbing to the last stages of his illness."

Pavarotti's charismatic persona and ebullient showmanship — but most of all his creamy and powerful voice — made him the most beloved and celebrated tenor since the great Caruso and one of the few opera singers to win crossover fame as a popular superstar.

"Luciano's voice was so extraordinarily beautiful and his delivery so natural and direct that his singing spoke right to the hearts of listeners whether they knew anything about opera or not," Metropolitan Opera music director James Levine said in a statement.

Fellow singer Jose Carreras called Pavarotti "one of the greatest tenors ever, one of the most important singers in the history of opera."

My grandmother LOVED opera and when I heard this news my first thought was of her. The world has truly lost a great artist.

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