It's Good to be Queen

Well, I'm guessing it's good. So far I haven't realized my life-long goal of ruling over a vast and powerful kingdom but I'm sure it's only a matter of time.

Cumulus in the Ocean In the meantime, it's been good to be me. Matching necklace (above) and (below) from left to right, stitchmarkers, said matching earrings, delicious looking picture of a cinnamon roll - that's why I've been craving cinnamon rolls! (as if I'm not always craving cinnamon rolls.....) from Opal The Akamai Knitter at her shop Opalescent Jewels.

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Blog pix 1285 A bag from JessaLu , perfect!  (I've been stuffing my mom's stole into it and then stuffing it in my purse - finally it stops catching in the zipper - I have to say one fabulous thing about Misti Alpaca, that yarn is resilient.)

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The latest yarn from the Mean Girl's Yarn Club.........oh wait, I can't show you yet.

Knitting update: more done on my mother's stole. More yarn purchased just in case.

The Undulating Waves Beaded Scarf is now a little more than half done. It turns out I cannot count repeats accurately. I have approximately 5 feet of beads still to knit. I wish I'd measured the beads when I first started it.

More done on Fickleknitter's Market Bag. A lot more would've been done if I could count repeats accurately. (Hmm, I'm sensing a theme).

Zippo was done on Curve of Pursuit, the SIL's gorgeous cable scarf that I will probably be unable to part with, Dizzy Blonde Basic Noir Black shawl or my Dad's cardigan.

Blog pix 1296_edited My cousin flew into California on business this last week so after he was done with work, one night my Dad took us all out to dinner and since he admitted he'd never really been to SF, the next one we took the Oakland ferry over to the Ferry Building, ate at Mijita (scrumptious) and then wandered up and down the wharf. The seals/sea lions/sea creatures are still there but man, there are a lot of them! They've been given their own little enclave now too. We watched a hilarious performer at Pier 39 - okay he was probably more hokey than out and out hilarious but I like hokey.

We probably should've taken the cable car at Hyde up to Powell but the line was practically back to the sidewalk and I had visions of missing the last ferry boat and wandering Oakland, unable to find Jack London Square in the dark. (Which is unlikely but par for the course for things I worry about).

READING UPDATE: So far in August, I'm still reading Ring of Fire (I'm on the last short story by Eric Flint, The Wallenstein Gambit) but I've been seized with the idea that I MUST research the 30 years war so that I'll actually get the alt history bit so I'm also reading The Thirty Years War  by Geoffrey Parker and dragging around Moral Relativism by Steven Lukes because at least that fits in my purse. I am on roughly page 8 on both of those.

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Hez sez: "I am undercover, you maroon. I know it's the last day of your [*coughing fit*]XX-ies but you'd think you could at least keep my hideout on the down low."

Pimping for La and Quarterly Book Reviews

Doesn't that title sound both street and stuffy? Schizo.

First! Pimping for La:

La Mean Grils About the club: The website is The Mean Girls Yarn Club

Sign-ups begin April 3, 2009 

La being Laura Wilson-Martos: blog is Fibercrack'd

Store is Dizzy Blonde Studios  Ravelry ID is KnottyLa

Ravelry Group is Dizzy Blondies

Her cohost in Mean-Girl-ness, Bobbie Bowles, store  KnittyKnitterton's House of Awesome, Ravelry ID is KnittyKnitterton and her Ravelry Group is House of AwesomeDizzy Blonde - Michelle 

  • First shipment goes out in June

  • Shipments will go out every other month for 1 year

  • The cost: $150 for the entire year, payable either in 1 lump sum, or in three $50 installments. This includes shipping.

  • Membership will be limited to 50 people.

  • The colorways are to be club exclusives.

  • Never to be sold by us.

  • And it’s all super secret until you get your installment.

  • Feel free to guess to your black heart’s contents.

  • There’s actually a theme within the theme.

  • Each skein will come with a little something COLLECTIBLE attached to the band, and an additional little something extra.

Please continue to Save the Words

keleusmatically: in a demanding manner. 

You Are "alt"
Some people might find you to be strange, mysterious, and even a bit off putting.
You tend to be drawn to and influenced by alternative lifestyles. You're definitely not normal.

Once people get to know you, they realize you're interesting, intriguing, and very intelligent.
You have a lot of knowledge stored in that big brain of yours. Most of it is useless knowledge, but some of it is very useful.

Once they get to know me? Ridiculous. To know me is to love me. Shamelessly cadged from Purling Dervish.  Eons ago.

Books read since the dawn of time beginning of January:

1. Liberation: Being the Adventures of the Slick Six After the Collapse of the United States of America.  Brian Francis Slattery (2008) 299 pages - I liked this book even though it has its flaws but this paragraph alone would have sold me: "...the employees of the library made a spontaneous pact to defend it as soon as the police force stopped working, and now they just live in the building. They hauled beds into the offices and corners of the huge reading rooms, put plaid couches against the marble walls. An army of cats patrols the halls, has litters on the stairs. She imagines that some of the librarians are fulfilling a long cherished fantasy."

This struck me. It never really occurred to me how true this is: "He now understand that this expectation of progress applies only to young nations, for most of the planet lives among the ruins of dead empires: Angkor Wat, the Great Zimbabwe, Rome, the Mughal palaces."

The writing style is reminiscent of Thomas Wolfe. John Fowles, Tom Robbins.

Zeke Hezekiah one of the six. What a fabulous name! Hez concurs. Blog pix 289 There's also the New Sioux, slavery reinstituted. The Aardvaark using his real name once he's King of New York. Assassins, dot com, The Vibe, Dr San Diego and the Americoids (and Felix Purple, the bus driver).

2. Who By Fire by Diana Spechler (2008) 343 pages. Quotes:

"Musically, Arbahim sounds sort of like a Hebrew-speaking version of the Grateful Dead, but lyrically, I guess they're more like Whitney Houston, not that I would share that analysis with Todd."

"Kind of selfish, isn't it? " I didn't mean to say that, didn't want to get into it with Yosi. But I was suddenly throbbing with rage. "We apologize three times and if we haven't been forgiven we have permission to feel forgiven? What if what we did was really bad? Three apologies can't always be enough. A million apologies might not be enough for some transgressions. Now that you've apologized to three times to Janie's father, do you honestly believe that you're absolved? Honestly?"

Oh boy. Brutal but with familial love. Ripped, damaged, torn, bound. Religion, mindless sex, blame, guilt. This was a pretty darn good book. Go read Bookfool's review for a well written coherent review of this book (and more).

Hmm. Apparently I've taken up free association book reviews.

  • The Magicians and Mrs Quent Beckett, Galen L SF 2008 499. A little too heavily drawn from Jane Austen and Charlotte Bronte. The previously mostly Elizabeth Bennett character (Pride & Prejudice) morphs oddly into Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre. Not a half bad fantasy world though. I hope he writes more.  

  • Confessions of an Economic Hit Man Perkins, John L NF 2004 250. Oh man. He had an unusual perspective on corporate culture in other countries but for someone so revolted by it, he sure didn't mind making the money or blaming others who couldn't have possibly had a clue or done a darn thing. A little too Illuminati and One World Government for me, the author was just too self serving to be believable, excellent read all the same.

    Index to Murder by Jo Dereske pb M. Helma Zukas, librarian. A lovely antidote of common sense after reading John Perkins.

    Anne Neville: Queen to Richard III  by Michael Hicks, pb B 2006 243 I admit it, I think Richard the III was framed by the Tudors. History is written by the victors after all. His Queen had a fairly eventful life all on her own. She was married to the actual heir to the throne first and I don't mean Edward, Richard's brother either.

  • The Post American World by Fareed Zakaria L NF 2008 272. I had no idea I was so US centric. Fascinating. Explains a bit more about our current recession woes even before it happened.

    Fool by Christopher Moore  HB F 2009 336. Oh sheesh. I wanted to like it, a take off on King Lear? By Christopher Moore? With the witches of MacBeth thrown in (Parsley, Sage and Rosemary. Do not ask about Thyme) among other Shakespearian touches (footnotes!) But the unending relentless mindless sex stuff just wore me down. I felt like someone's disapproving maiden great aunt. It's just so........mindless. Constant. He does warn that it's a bawdy tale. Bawdy, my eye. Bawdy is fun. This was verging on cretinous. Go read A Dirty Job.

    Uncommon Reader Bennett, Alan pb F 2007 128 Excellent, excellent novella about QE2 discovering books. Highly recommended.

    House of Wits: An Intimate Portrait of the James Family by Paul Fisher,  L B 2008 669 Everything I never knew about Henry James and his family. Now I'm desperate to learn more about Alice James, his sister. Despite Henry James, patriarch, being such a free thinking man in public, he certainly had old fashioned ideals.

    Good Germs, Bad Germs: Health Survival in a Bacterial World by Jessica Snyder Sachs L NF 2007 273 pages. OMG, scary! Scary and at the same time, fascinating. Explains quite thoroughly why antibiotics fail, how bacteria has gotten the upper hand and why you should never skip a vaccine.

  • A Cold Day for Murder, Fatal Thaw 1993 208,  Dead in the Water 1993 224 and Cold Blooded Business L M 1994 240 by Dana Stabenow, follow the cases that Kate Shugak, an Aleut of Alaska takes on. I can't believe I've never read this series before but I love seeing Alaska through her eyes and Kate herself is a woman I admire.

    Paths Not Taken L UF 2005 272 and Just Another Judgement Day HB UF 2009 263 by Simon R Green, the latest installments in the life of John Taylor, son of Lilith and the day to day goings on in Nightside. One of my favorite guys.

    How to Write Gertrude Stein  1931. I ran across this my old fashioned way of finding books, by perusing shelves in a bookstore. It occurred to me that I'd never actually read anything by Gertrude Stein and in fact, could only attribute to her the famous quote about my hometown, Oakland CA "there's no there there." The book reads something like that quote.

    Lover of Unreason: Assia Wevill, Sylvia Plath's Rival and Tom Hughes Doomed Love Koren, Yehuda. Still reading.....

    The Lost Continent: Travels in Small-Town America by Bill Bryson, L NF 1989 Just picked up as a light hearted antidote to the current work mode but it's not exactly what I had in mind. I absolutely loved his delightful A Walk In the Woods but The Lost Continent? while it's occasionally pretty funny, it seems a lot more mean and mean spirited than I can take right now.

      Blog pix 936 I'm taking odds - can Marina finish her eight sleeves before I finish my second sleeve on Mary Tudor? (The answer for those of you who don't know is, heck yeah she can. But I have hope).