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December 2007
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February 2008

Hallelujah Hezekiah is Unhappy

with me but fine. Not even bruised. Evidently the sensor in the garage door kicked in before it smushed her and caught her in the midsection which was why we figure it could go low enough to pin her but not do any damage. She's almost but not quite a half pound overweight but considering she (the vet) had wanted her to gain a whole pound just two years ago and her crappy weekend, not too shabby.

Mmip_548_edited That's a picture of her on the fence right afterwards telling me in no uncertain terms was she coming in with me right then so I suppose I shouldn't have been as worried as I was. She'd managed to climb the fence easily enough (and pose nicely too) but pin your cat under a garage door and see how sanguine you aren't.

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Cats. Mmip_541 Look what KSD sent me! Isnt that a darling scarf she knit? It's the perfect length and colors to go with my dress shirts for the office.

And check out the little mouse envelope sticky she used - is that not the cutest thing? A closer look: Mmip_541_edited_2

And now I'm off for some feverish knitting and annoying my cat. Maybe even laundry. Be still my heart.


Maudlin Monday

TV: Anyone watch Mansfield Park on the Masterpiece Theater Jane Austen series last night? Anyone else have a hard time placing who the sister Maria was played by? The New Bionic Woman. Could not believe it.

I think I caught a glimpse of Adam from MI-5 in the crowd during the wedding scene.

Well. I think they caught the, ah flavor of the book.  I haven't read it and was basically flipping through the book last night double checking the scenes, it seemed to be a somewhat faithful adaption if hideously abridged, not that the nuances of Sir Thomas and Lady Bertram's fondness of Fanny came through. It seemed to be somewhat added to the end. But oh well. Not half bad. How did it stack up to the book if I'd actually read the book beforehand?

And, typically, there's another good show on during the Austen series timeslot, if an entirely different century and culture. Breaking Bad on AMC at 10pm Sunday night is pretty intense. It's an interesting compare and contrast of society of 1808 to 2008 (note: blogging license with the dates) if you watch them back to back. (That link is a clip, so be warned.)

Knitting-wise: Blog_pix_793

That would be the back of the super secret not-jinxed-yet cable cardigan and another preemie cap for the K3tog Preemie Cap drive. Yes! Another! I have finished multiple caps! As in, more than one, which is normally quite pathetic but I was having one unbelievably difficult time with the first one. 

Here's a better another shot of the back of the cardigan: Blog_pix_794 It's just fiddly enough to keep it interesting but easy enough to memorize. Even the shaping is easily done.

In Bad Parenting Cat news, I managed to squash Hezekiah under the automatic garage door on Saturday coming home from work. I'm fairly certain I only managed to pin her but it freaked me out and I don't think she was all that happy with it either. She immediately ran away from me into the back yard but considering it was dark and rainy, deigned to come into the house about an hour later. She's been hopping in and out of her cat tree and hasn't missed a meal yet, but she's still going to the vet later this afternoon. I keep thinking internal injuries or hairline fractures. And the guilt! The guilt! I feel so horrible.

Blog_pix_788_edited Mt Diablo as seen from Pine Hollow Rd last week. No snow now, but there was still some over the weekend!

I have recently discovered The World of Podcasts (love my iPhone!). Anyone have any favorites to recommend? I've subscribed to

  • Cast On
  • Sticks and Strings Knit Science
  • Dan Carlin's Hardcore History
  • Hot For Words
  • Berkeley Groks
  • The Math Factor
  • Stash & Burn

Blog_pix_765_edited Hez sez: "How could you?"  And "Check out the 24th National Cowboy Poetry Gathering."


Snow! And Happy Birthday, Mom

Snow!Blog_pix_787_edited_2

2008 Presidential Candidate Matching Quiz. Very interesting. I was a wee bit shocked by my results.

Steven Pinker's YouTube lecture at Google on his Stuff of Thought.

See? All knit up. More or less. Blog_pix_784_edited See that little green stitchmarker? Right across the big gob of excess yarn? (Gah. That had better block out). That's my favorite muck up to do EVER. For some reason, I manage with astonishing repetitiveness to drop a a stitch on the edge. Good thing I generally add selvedge stitches but still.

And? Two of them! I have sleeves! Multiples! They even somehow managed to come out with the almost same row count which is amazing, after reading my notes with a Not Decimated By The Flu brain.

Now I just need a back and fronts and a collar and.......oh wow. One piece at a time. And shhhh. This is an semi secret project so that I don't jinx it.

I hope you're all watching The Sarah Conner Chronicles Mondays at 9pm on Fox. It's actually doing pretty good in the ratings which is either a testament to the genre reaching a more popular level or there's nothing else on. I don't care. Quit cancelling shows I like. However......uh.....I'm sort of watching Island At War and taping TSCC.

Anyone catch Northanger Abbey Sunday night? Second in the Jane Austen marathon on PBS this season. I love that particular novel and they did a pretty good job of translating it to the screen, unlike the previous outing of Persuasion. Next up: Mansfield Park, another Austen I haven't read. Think I can read it by Sunday? I'm really engrossed in Unspeakable. We're not that far away from when being black, or deaf, or different got you locked up, even by your family. We have so much, we need to focus occasionally on how very far we've come but not forget where we've been or where we want to go.


The Flu is not Fun

Blog_pix_768 Yucko, in fact. I thought I was pretty much cured after a weekend of coughing, congestion, stuffiness and snot but since walking upstairs to my office has left me pretty much wanting to curl up and sleep on my desk, maybe not. I hate having a fever that gives you the cold shakes and why on earth is sleeplessness part of the symptoms?  The least a cold should do is confine you to bed, knitting, reading, watching TV or sleeping. Sleeping. Not tossing around alternately freezing and boiling and going through a forest of Kleenex.

Oh well. I am pretty much over it. Just not the self pitying grumpy part, evidently.

There's been knitting but I'm afraid if I show it or name it, all productivity will cease.Blog_pix_779_edited (Oh, okay. Check this out. ) (Yes, that's productivity.) (It is too.) (I'm working under the assumption that a lot of the irregularity will block out. Which it might, you know.)

At least it wasn't as bad as knitting preemie caps for K3tog. Everything that could go wrong with the first cast on did. Moebius'ed. The cable cast on came apart. (I have never had that happen before. I've moebius stripped a join occasionally, but even that's rare for me, much less having the cast on itself unravel. I'm not even sure that's physically possible, other than it happened.) What else? The join was a mile wide. The number stitches I cast on was really off for the yarn I was using. Good thing they're tiny.

Did anyone catch Persuasion Sunday night? I'm fairly positive (which was confirmed) that no way would Anne go running down the streets after Wentworth. I have got to read the book. I'm on a PBS kick. I watched Island at War last night - part One of Five [gnashes teeth] and despite it being another Nazi flick, I was pleasantly surprised. Well, not pleasantly, the Nazis invaded the islands of Jersey and Guernsey, represented in the movie as St Gregory's Island. The story follows the islanders and how they deal with the occupation.

Tonight is Monarchy with David Starkey at 8pm. Blog_pix_780 Blog_pix_771_edited I'm on a PBS kick.

Happy Cat! Basking in the sun. Shivering on the cold deck, but basking in the sun. Basking in the sun inside too with the added bonus of having a lovely set of knitting instructions to lay on.


New 2008 Inane Babbling!

Check out the Traveler's IQ Challenge from Lawyers, Guns and Money.  Shockingly - I'm blaming it on the time constraints -  I'm unable to tell the difference between Canada, the US and South America. All those years calling myself an American evidently means I've staked the whole freaking continent.

Blog_pix_764_edited Walnut Creek's winter outdoor ice skating rink on Broadway, between Park Place and what's about to be the old library.

TV News: Dexter is coming to CBS on Feb 17th. Y'all have to let me know if it's vastly different from the original.

I hear The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and The Colbert Report on back on the air tonight, but only from the Candian Press? And Medium is back tonight, finally. Of course, Bruno and Carrie Ann of Dancing With The Stars show is on tonight too and yes, I will be watching it, live or taped.

Sunday night, the 13th, PBS kicks off The Complete Jane Austen with Persuasion.

Did anyone else catch Cartographia: Mapping Civilizations by Vincent Virga on BookTV last night? I have this thing for maps and the inside tour of the Library of Congress' Geographic & Maps Division alone was fascinating.

Knitting News: Ah, there is none, other than I have a depressingly small amount of stash that's enough to make a whole sweater. It's not like I have just one or two skeins of things either, but I have just-not-quite-enough for the patterns I was eyeing. This is going to make knitting from my stash harder than anticipated. I really do need to inventory it.

What pattern was I eyeing? Soon to be revealed. Maybe. If the gauge swatch works out. Oh sure, there are some people who probably think I'm going to knit poor Mary Tudor, but Mary Tudor is so last year. (Possibly so-the-year-before-last-year, come to think of it.)

I'll say one thing. Knitting abbreviations have come a long way in a decade.

Resolutions:

Hmmm. I know I had some.

Blog_pix_765_edited Hezekiah is deeply unhappy with the state of the weather. She would like someone - anyone - to please put the sun back and can you dial down the wind a bit? And quit it with the rain?


2007 Statistics

funny pictures
moar funny pictures

Statistics! Oh, I can hear the excitement. [Hmm. Sounds like crickets. Odd] Out of 81 books I started to read in 2007:

  • 53 were library books
  • I actually read 61 of them
  • 15 DNF
  • 5  'still' reading - 1968 by Mark Kurlansky, The Blank Slate by Steven Pinker, Madwoman in the Attic by Susan Grubar and Sandra Gilbert, The New Time Travelers by David Toomey and Books on Fire: The Destruction of Libraries Throughout History by Lucien X Polastron
  • 17 bought this year
  • 7 from my TBR shelves
  • 28 non fiction
  • 52 fiction
  • 8 collections of short stories by various authors
  • 2 audiobooks
  • 50 written by men
  • 20 written by women

Best Book? Oh, that's a tough one. My favorite two were short stories. The Secret Lives of People in Love by Simon Von Booy and The Devil's Mode by Anthony Burgess. 

Worst book - How to Read a Poem by Edward Hirsch. It was my only D rating of the year. My review back then: .... written far too strongly in his voice for my tastes. I really didn't feel like reading all about how Edward Hirsch felt/thought/dreamed/whatever about a poem. The glossary in the back makes the entire book worthwhile though and I'll probably pick up the book and enjoy it some day.

  • 7 published in 2007
  • 30 between 2000-2006
  • 1 in 1847 (Jane Eyre- Charlotte Bronte)
  • 1 in 1855 (The Warden by Anthony Trollope
  • 1 in 1862 (Lady Audley's Secret by Mary Elizabeth Braddon)
  • 1 1887 (She by H Ryder Haggard.)
  • 1 in 1909 (The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett)
  • 1 1940's (Earth Abides by George R Stewart
  • 3  1950's, two of which were apocalyptic stories. (A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter Miller Jr and Alas, Babylon by Pat Frank - I preferred Canticle)
  • So....7 in the Reading Through the Decades Challenge. And 2 that were on my list.

Blog_pix_760_edited KNITTING: Projects frogged this year: The Oldest UFO; the Wool Ease Norwegian Socks. The Retro Cardi. The oversized cable sweater. Kat with a K's UFO Resurrection had me rethinking more than a few projects, but like every other challenge, I didn't quite make it.

Actually, I'm not really sure about my knitting projects. In 2008, I think I'll keep an Excel sheet on those the way I have on my books. I know I finished the Mountain Stream Scarf (it's drying on the blocking board as we speak), the Annemor #13 mittens,  the Hugs For Snickers scarf and probably a bunch of dishcloths but other than that? No clue. (Possibly because that's all I've knit this year.....) Ravelry is a great help, but I like having the day and not just the month. If I'm tracking it at all.  Blog_pix_706_edited

This year is already getting away from me. Uh oh.

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