Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Yarn Aboard!

Knock, knock.

Who's there?

'Tis Meriwether and --

What? I don't know any Mary.

No, sir. We are Meriwether Lewis and William Clark.

Sorry, dudes, but whatever you're selling, I don't need any. Wouldja mind moving on? I'm kinda busy right now.

Sir, we're sorry for bothering you, but we seem to have become lost.

Dudes, go down to the corner. There's a bus stop and a map with all the bus routes.

Sir, please. We've been wandering for days. We have asked many strangers for assistance, and no one will help us. Everyone is speaking a language we don't understand, and we fear we have wandered into the Spanish territory.

Dudes, you are Very, Very Lost. That isn't Spanish, it's French. And you're in Canada, not the Spanish territory, whatever the heck that is.

Oh, my, we are much worse off than we previously thought. Please, sir, would you render us a kindness and assist us in regaining our way?

Dudes, I don't know what kind of game you're playing here, but if you don't move along I'm gonna call the cops. Go find some other scam -- this one is kind of lame.

Sir, we have no scam, whatever the heck that is, as you might say, but if you would but give us a moment of your time, we do have trade goods to recompense you for your efforts. We can offer you some wonderful tea and --

Tea, didja say? Well, umm, yeah, I could use some tea about now, but, you know, I'm really too busy to stop for tea right now.

Sir, we also have chocolate, which is a confection that is savoured --

Chocolate? Why didn't you say that in the first place? Come on in.

(a few minutes later, over a nice cuppa and a munch of sweetness)

Dudes, according to this map, all you hafta do is head south and west, and you'll eventually get where you're trying to go. It might take you a few days, but you'll get there. Hop on the No. 7 bus and transfer at the --

Sir, we know naught of any bus. To be honest, this strange country of yours has us totally befuddled. You have strange, hard pathways with eery lights and --

Yeah, well, all you hafta do is just walk along one of them pathways and stick out your thumb, like this. Someone will give you a lift eventually.

Sir, we beg of you. We are finding the language here difficult, and navigation next to impossible. Whatever path we take, they all seem to lead to a territory strangely called "Construction." Given your familiarity with this area, if you might take us only to the border of your Canada and our --

Take you to the border? Are you nuts? That's like an hour and a half away. The train station is just over --

Sir, please, we realize you are busy, but if we are only an hour and a half off our route, that is most wonderful news! We have other goods we can trade for your assistance. We have a wondrous letter-writing material, with incredibly beautiful pictorials of spun fibre that can be --

Spun fibre? You guys are starting to get a little more interesting. I kinda have a thing for "spun fibre." Those are really nice note cards. I guess I could give you a lift to the train station.

Sir, you drive a hard bargain. We need to get to the border, not a "station." Perhaps we can barter some livestock --

Dudes, I don't want any livestock. Trust me on this. I really don't need livestock.

Sir, this livestock is of a rare variety that you may have heard about but which you undoubtedly will not have seen previously. You may actually find it to be very useful, given your propensity towards the fibres.

Aww, dudes. That is so cute. Look at his liddle measuring tail just a'wiggling away. Err, ahem.

Okay, tell you what. I'll take you to the station and make sure you get on the right train, but I'm not going all the way to the border. That's too far, and I just don't have the time right now. If I were you, though, since you seem to be in such a hurry, I'd probably fly. Rather than a coupla days, you'd be back in Oregon in a few hours.

Sir, are you mocking us? You want us to fly like a bird? We beg of you, take our plight seriously. The American Congress has authorized us to --

Whoa, dudes, I am NOT getting involved in some international incident. Why didn't you say you were feds? I'm gonna turn you over to the embassy and they can ponder your problem. That should give them bureaucrats something to do for a coupla months.

Sir! You offer to assist us, and then you threaten to detain us? Your moods are most mercurial. We are not "feds", as you say. We have a commission to fulfil, and we must be on our way as expeditiously as possible. Perhaps you will reconsider if we offer you a bag.

A bag? Dudes, I'm gonna bag you if you don't --

Oh. That kind of bag. Wow. Look at that. You know, I think I could actually think of a purpose for a beautiful, hand-made bag like that. Yeah, it'll come in pretty handy. It's the perfect size for what I have in mind, the colours are fantastic, and the craftmanship excellent. Ok, no embassy. We're back to the train station.

Sir, you do indeed drive a hard bargain. We almost wish we would have started our journey with you in our Corps of Discovery. Perhaps our trading would have --

Dudes, I don't want nothing to do with no corpse. If you're going to get all weird, you can leave right now.

Sir, you misunderstand. Very well. You leave us no choice. We will offer you the finest trade goods we have in return for conduct to the border. We will give you .... Toast.

You are the strangest little dudes I have ever met. I can make plenty toast all on my own, thank you very much.

This is special toast, Sir, made by a woman in the fine state of Virginia.

Oh, great, stale toast that you've dragged all the way from Virginia to the "Spanish territory." Forget it.

Sir, this woman, by the name of Claudia, is world-renowned for her expertise. I think you will reconsider once you see this Toast.

Grab your coats, dudes. We'll hafta gas up before we leave town.


Fun courtesy Amanda, host of Yarn Aboard -- thank you, Amanda!

A most excellent Yarn Aboard package courtesy Allison , enabler extraordinare -- thank you very much, Allison!!

Monday, November 27, 2006

SAM2 - November done!

I finally finished my D-Mac socks! I can't find my sock blockers right now, so you get yet another "front stoop" photo.

I must say that I LOVE these colours. The yarn is Mama-E's C*eye*ber-Fiber in the D-Mac colourway. Very beachy -- steely blue, chocolate brown and a bit of misty green.

For some reason, these socks took forever. I've been knitting on them since the beginning of October, and now that they're done, I kind of miss having them on the needles.

I did the Vikkel braid short row-heel again, this time with a small gusset over the instep and the fit is improved.

However, just because production has slowed down around here doesn't mean that my mailbox has slowed down. The sock yarn still keeps pouring in.

I love Mama-E's yarn -- I've joined her sock club series twice now. I previously posted about how much I like Spunky Eclectic's wild colourways. I'm in her sock club too, and I'm always tickled with what comes in.

But I don't think I've posted about another one of my favourites -- this time more on the subtle side.

Jessie over at A Piece of Vermont does subtle like nobody's business.

She's been trying out different yarns, and now has one that is a mohair mix grown, processed, spun -- and dyed :-) --locally.

You know how sometimes you get some yarn and you just want to sit and look at it all day?

That's what I want to do with this ...

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

ISE3 - Rocked by Betty Crocker

It was a good mail day today -- my ISE 3 scarf arrived!

My swap partner was Liz, formerly bettycrockerpunkrocker, but now blogging here. She sent me this gorgeous scarf knit from Debbie Bliss Soho, some wonderful tea, chocolates, and a very cool "pencil case" which we know is not likely to see any pencils but will instead house a tape measure, stitch markers, scissors, etc. -- totally cool!

Thanks so much, Liz -- the scarf is perfect!

The mistake rib pattern really shows off the wonderful colours and texture in this yarn. This is exactly the kind of yarn that would follow me home from the LYS. The scarf is soft, cuddly, thick, warm ... and it smells real nice too. :-) Thanks, Liz!

In the Other News Department, I'm onto the second of my Socktober socks (yes, I know it's the middle of November), and I've finished the back of my Noro sweater and barely started the front. No progress pics, sorry. I also have a secret project that is temporarily stalled while I sort out some equipment issues. I've been digging about in my UFO pile -- chucked some stuff and resurrected others. What I really need right now, though, is something big that I can just knit away on without having to think too much and that won't have any tricky bits that hit me at 11 o'clock at night just when I don't want to get hit by tricky bits. I'm thinking afghan. I have the yarn and pattern in mind. Will it materialize? Stayed tuned.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Something old, something new

I went digging through the cupboard, looking for something to do, and look what I found.

A pair of mitts, started when? Last year? The year before? I can't remember. All they needed was one top finished and a couple of thumbs. Knit with two strands of Patons Decor held together, colour Tapesty, at a thick, warm and hopefully windproof gauge of 5 stitches per inch, based on the generic mitten pattern in Ann Budd's generic book of patterns. I finished them.

What looked like brown and beige as I was knitting them inside turns out to be brown and purple in the brighter outdoor light. Never mind, they'll be good this winter when I'm shovelling, sweeping and scraping my way through the snow and ice.

I also found this.

It's Noro Silk Garden, colour No. 203. I bought it a while ago as a bribe to myself. In an effort to overcome my sweater phobia, I said, "Dave, dude, you have two sweaters on the go. Finish them. One is a year old, and the other probably two years. Finish them. Then you can knit the Noro."

I don't always listen to myself. I really want a cardigan. I have two underway. Somehow, I find myself knitting a pullover.

Doesn't matter. I'm happy.