Posted a crapload of Bethany’s pictures. Ow! You go, girl! I love her mascot, Stripes.
Archives for September 2003
September 2003 Archive
Whew. I made it to my new weekend (TWT). Didn’t know, for a minute, if I was going to make it or if I was going to just stay at work, forever. And ever. And ever. Like a record when it skips, like Bill Murray in Groudhog Day, I would stay in my headset, trapped at a computer terminal until I was old and grey.
Yesterday I managed to perfect my (new) morning routine. Up at six a.m. (OMG, usually just going to bed at that time), sat in the living room to check email and write a blog entry, made a little breakfast, DID MY WRITING (gold star, wheee!), took a walk, did a little yoga, took a shower and made it to work by nine. Felt like a million bucks. Then someone called in sick which meant I had to stay for twelve hours. And feeling so great and efficient, I volunteered to stay for fourteen. Dumb ass. Dumb ASS. Oh, yes, by eleven that night, I could no longer type. I MEAN it. I was writing words as they sounded in my head – I typed TIME instead of TYPE just because they kinda sounded the same and had the same number of letters. I couldn’t get a verb in the same sentence as a noun. Total disconnect occurred. It’s not that bad to work a fourteen, but not when you’ve been so very effing productive for the three hours prior to the shift.
Then, of course, I got home and Digit was making VERY good use of the while-the-cat’s-away thing and partying it up with the boys down the street. Never did get him inside – he rolled in about seven this morning, dirty and smelling like whiskey, yelling for his food.
And of course, I couldn’t sleep. I started another Booga J bag while watching the taped season finale of Sex in the City (I can’t help it – did anyone else besides Carrie and me (and I didn’t buy Carrie’s reaction) find Mikhail Baryshnikov hot? I could NOT believe I thought he was sexy. But I did. I didn’t expect that). Then I got in bed and read, expecting to fall asleep. Nope. An hour later, I gave up and sat up with a Koigu sock and a New Yorker and read for another hour. (Why didn’t you all tell me how great Koigu was? Oh, yeah. You did…..)
So it’s now almost one in the afternoon, I’m just getting up, and I feel like I’m back on my old schedule. Blast. And I’m also feeling lazier than hell. I had grand visions of laundry and cleaning out closets today. Ehh. Whatever.
Bored with myself. Means you must be, too. Off to be actively lazy. Yoipes.
That’s the thing about being sick. I missed a night at work, but by doing so worked some serious OT on the Wave-Along, and I’m DONE! And it’s HUGE!
And seriously, that Cascade Indulgence was some of the nicest fiber I’ve ever used, sooooo soft and whisper smooth and strong. It was really difficult to give it to Marama. But I did it, last night (after taking no less that eighty-two pictures of it. Not exaggerating. Difficult to get a good picture of dark grey yarn).
So here are some shots:
Just being finished on my lap, Adah helping the way she does best:
With Adah in the background for size reference (it’s about 70 inches long by 30 inches wide, I added two extra repeats across for a total of 116 stitches, on size 9 US, 4 skeins of Indulgence).
Oh! And the Wonderful Greta has finished her shawl, too! And hers has a great story behind its making. Whoo hoo! Anyone else? (remember, no deadline. Just whenever. That’s the way we play this one):
On a totally different subject, just to show you what happens in my brain when I’m sleepy, if you’re reading quickly (and you miss the word TOXIC) and you read this:
You think, how cool! Mother’s milk really IS the best! Baby’s extra-safe, flame retardant built right in.
I dreamed this morning of being in on a rollercoaster ride, a rickety old one that had no seat belts, and it went around the side of a mountain. To the right was the ocean which was at first beautiful and then turned rough. Really rough. The rollercoaster took us right under and through great towering waves of water, hundreds of feet over our heads. We made it (barely) to the end of the ride. Isn’t this an odd dream for someone who feels pretty grounded right now? Other than changing shifts at work (which is weird but not life-transforming), I can’t imagine why I would dream so vividly of two such worrisome images. Can’t get more cliched than rollercoaster and wild waves, can you? Hmmmm.[Oh, I just figured it out. It was the Wave-Along! Duh. What a ride!]
See? It takes all y’all whapping me upside the head to figger it out. Alison’s was the best: “Don’t worry about calling in sick, you knob. You’re SICK!” Oh, yeah. Then I guess it’s okay to call in sick.
Novel idea, eh? (hmmmm…. novel idea……)
It’s just that…. At some jobs, when you call in sick, your work piles up. You’re gonna be screwed when you go back, and other people may be inconvenienced if you’re not there, but their lives aren’t really overly affected. At my job, if my ass ain’t in the seat, someone else’s ass has to be there instead. You don’t close 911 due to staffing. So by calling in sick, I’m forcing my friends to have to stay twelve or fourteen hours, overtime that they weren’t planning on, probably cutting into plans that they already had, and they can’t say no. It’s forced overtime. It’s usually just easier for me to go to work sick.
Eh. So it’s almost a relief that I woke up this morning still feeling awful. “Whew! I really WAS sick, wasn’t I? Hey! Good thing I didn’t go to work.”
(I think this is why I’m drawn to all things Catholic (girlfriends, candles, countries) – searching for a place to lay my guilt. At least if you’re Catholic, you have a REASON to feel guilty. Or at least a long tradition of feeling so. Being raised Episcopalian, I got nothin’ but some good hymns and a love of liturgical robes.)
(Judaism also appeals, gotta tell you.)
(It’s got to be wrong to be attracted to a religion for its romantic aspects, doesn’t it?)
(Now I’m just abusing parentheses.)
So I loved hearing the common-sense you all gave me. I’m taking it very very easy today, just knitting and reading, and then I start the new day shift tomorrow, Sunday morning! I’ll be healthy and happy and raring to go.
PS – That lick/spit thing worked SOOOO well in splicing the ends that I was actually able to go back and fix my glaring error in judgment. Thanks to Rob for suggesting it and Lisa for giving me great directions on how exactly to do it. If she hadn’t, I would have probably just licked the ends and done some kind of macrame-wishing dance that would have ended horribly.
PPS – I was noodling around, taking pictures of the thing that I always take pictures of: The Adah. Look, ain’t she purty?
And then I was feeling a little off, and wanted to scroll through the pictures on my camera, so I put my feet up on the divan and rested on my back on the carpet. This is what I could see from this vantage.
To my right:
To my left:
And looking down:
It only takes a second for her to settle in (and don’t expect my socks to match my pants on an in-house Saturday – I know yours don’t, either). Enjoy your weekend, all!
Erg. Sniffle. Whine.
I feel like crap, so will keep this short. Called in sick tonight, so feel even worse. But I couldn’t sleep all day – have been mostly awake since I got off work this morning – fever and bad tummy. That’s on top of the nose that doesn’t stop and the scratchy throat that feels like it’s heading to a cough. And I HATED calling in sick, especially since it was to have been my last midnight shift (new day shift starts Sunday morning), but I’m pretty positive I wouldn’t have made it to Sunday morning if I don’t rest tonight.
Which is worse? The crud or the guilt?
Need to get over myself. I don’t like me sick. Glad I live alone. I can throw my kleenex all over the floor until I get so disgusted I can’t see straight.
My friend Brandy cracked me up last night when she said, apologetically, “You know, I still like your blog, but I think I like your sister’s better!” And when I told Beth that this morning, she hollered with laughter, she was so happy. And so cute. Go see her.
1. Attempt open-heart surgery.
2. Have open-heart surgery.
4. Make evident your laziness by tying a knot between the two skeins of yarn and telling yourself you’ll just weave in the ends nicely.
5. Make evident even greater laziness by discarding the weaving idea and simply clipping the ends at the square knot.
6. Clip those ends closely (like, say, less than a millimeter, ‘cause you’re cool that way).
1-3 – No problem. What, you think I’m stoopid?
4-6 – Well. Yep. There’s the problem. Knitting back, the row AFTER I perform 4-6, the knot slips and I’m looking at VERY short ends rapidly unraveling (blast that gorgeous soft slippery fiber).
What do you do?
No. WHAT DO YOU DO?
I have no clue what the right answer is. I stopped breathing for a while but that gave me a headache. I swore a LOT. The cats went up onto the top of the refrigerator – where they go when the bad man picks up the trash outside or I run the vacuum. Then I kinda caught the loops that were now exposed, pulled the ends, caught some more weeping loops, got enough of the ends between my fingers to tie about seven (not exaggerating here) knots which are now sticking out in a twig-like formation and which I’ll have to sew into the finished shawl later (don’t tell Marama, the gift-ee). Still not sure it’ll hold. I’m having wild-man thoughts about things like a dab of Krazy-Glue on the last knot before I weave it in.
‘Scuse the French, but FUCK.
I tell you, it’s always right when I’m being smug, too. Pride goeth…. Look, how gorgeous and even and I ain’t done nothin’ wrong. Yep. What a great knitter I am! Let’s tie a knot!
Lordy. I need a drink.
And some soft kleenex. Still have the crud. Bleah. One of the things in life in which I believe most is the power of Kleenex ColdCare lotion tissues. I just ran out, so I’m off to the grocery store, where hopefully Bethany’s pictures are in – if they are, I’ll post some tonight on her site!
Unless it’s wool, don’t tie knots. You hear me? Don’t do it!
With permission requested and received, I present you the photo that my friend B sent me.
Yep, that’s B in the middle (her name’s actually Brooke, I’ll give that to you). Yep, here she is, with her pals Amy Ray and Emily Saliers of the Indigo Girls. Yep, this is a real “hanging out” shot, not a panting can-I-get-a-pitcher-wit-ya-please shot. Yep, she’s down south with them as they lay mixes. Not sure what that means exactly, but it sounds impressive and vastly musical.
I am star-struck and can admit it freely – they’ve been my favorite musicians for the last, say, thirteen or fourteen years. In fact, I remember where I was when I first heard them. I had graduated high school, and I was getting in shape for college. Still thinking I was straight, I was working out at my gym, trying to look cute for all the college boys I planned to meet (interesting, though, that I chose a women-only gym….) I was on the Stair-Master, hating my cardiovascular life, and I heard “Galileo” for the first time. I got off the machine and stood under the permanently-set-on-VH-1 TV (this was the early nineties, remember). I watched the end of the song and memorized the name. I showered, dressed, and drove to the music store. That was the beginning. And actually, I don’t remember even going back to that gym. Who cared? I had the Indigo Girls – I didn’t need a gym! They brought me to me.
And years later, I don’t rely on them anymore, not in the same way, but I don’t miss a concert when they’re in town, and I know all the words. I’m first in line when an album comes out. I still get goosebumps when they start “Galileo.” Memories are traced onto and around the lyrics. My favorite parts of their concerts are when they just stop singing and the entire audience picks it up and fills in, every word, in harmony. It’s GOT to be a fantastic feeling to have aided so many women (and men) in finding and believing in themselves.
And Brooke and Amy are pals. Lordy. I just think that’s super neat.
I’ve got the most annoying cold today – I caught it from Christy. I can sit in the TB ward, also known as my workplace, all week, stuck for fifty hours with people who are hacking and sneezing and blowing their noses all over communal keyboards, and I won’t catch a single teeny germ. I can hug snotty, feverish kids and kiss their heads and not get a thing. I come within a hundred yards of either of my sisters when they’ve got a little sniffle, and I catch it instantly. I’m immune to everything but them.
It’s not a bad cold. Just an irritating one. Bleah. I got up early today – couldn’t sleep – and I’m going to do my writing and then cuddle on the couch with my Wave-Along until I have to go to work tonight (only three more midnight shifts!)
And thanks for your comments yesterday! They helped so much. I’m writing. And I’m gonna keep writing ‘til I’m done. Then I’ll start something else. It’s a good life, huh?
Bethany’s too cool.
I’ve had an extremely low-key weekend, which I needed. I spent hours and hours in front of the television working on my Wave-Along shawl (for some reason, this is the shorthand way I think of it – not the awkward long name it goes by to the right). And ohmigod, I love that thing. I’ve already told my friend Marama, who kick-started this whole thing by asking me sweetly for YEARS when I would have time to make her a little shawl, that she might not get it after all.
And a detail of the Indulgent softness:
I even took the shawl outside to get these pictures (it’s REALLY hard to get pictures of dark grey fiber, especially when it’s lacey). Today is the first day I’ve felt Fall approaching – there’s a warm wind, and leaves are clattering on the sidewalk. I took Wave-Along outside, put it on an old white nightie for contrast, snapped a couple of shots, AND THE WIND CAME UP AND PUT LITTLE PIECES OF TWIGS AND DIRT ALL OVER IT. I haven’t shouted at the wind in years. But I did today, godamnit. Then I hustled inside; the neighbors were peeping out windows. “My god, I think she’s taking pictures of dirt. And is that, no, a nightgown? This is Oakland, not San Francisco! She cain’t do that here!”
I re-read Stephen King’s On Writing this week. I’m not a fan of his – he’s just too frightening for scaredy-cat me – but I think his book is one of the best out there on writing. It’s one of the three I re-read (the others are Lamott’s Bird by Bird and Ueland’s If You Want to Write). He’s a good one for motivating. He’s not for the faint of heart, though. He doesn’t say you’ll be great if you work hard. He says you’re either born great (like Faulkner and Eliot) or you can practice a whole hell of a lot and maybe get pretty okay at writing. Maybe even good. But if you’re not great today, you won’t be great tomorrow. Instead of pissing me off, this is kind of reassuring to me. Well, okay then. I’ll just plod along (typo: plot along) and get this book finished. Then I’ll start the next one.
I’m also reassured by his belief in letting the story take you where you need to go. It’s when I start to think about Plotting The Novel that I get frustrated. It’s like pushing mud. I can’t make the pages behave, I can only get the words onto the paper. He, too, is advocating the shaping of the work coming after it’s totally written. THEN you make it into something. Thank god. ‘Cause it ain’t much now.
I figure, with work, I can finish this bad boy up in about a month or so. Two at the outside. And then, says Stephen King, I need to take at least six weeks away from it before starting to revise. That’ll be enough time to order me up some more Indulgence as a reward, dont’cha think? I need a carrot on a string. I’m a simple girl.
Oh! Here’s Joan-in-Reno’s Wave-Along, made in a mohair/acrylic Lion’s Brand yarn, and a shot of pretty Emma checking it out, too.
Happy Monday! I typed Happy Homeday on accident, but I like it. I don’t work ‘til tomorrow, so happy homeday it is. That’s kind of what yesterday was, too. I had lunch with a friend and then I stayed home for the rest of the day. It was gorgeous. Luxurious. Hey! I told you that I finished these:
In Fortissima Colori, can’t remember the colorway since I throw everything away. It’s an annoying habit, this twitch I have to recycle every little bit of paper lying around my house. If I don’t, then Adah eats it, which is even more annoying.
So yesterday, I got to start this:
It’s the Wave-Along Shawl! Crappy pic, I know. But it’s in Cascade Indulgence, and as I have discussed with Marcia, it is nothing BUT indulgence. It brings to mind old Catholic rites – I HAVE bought this indulgence as remission of punishment for old sins. How could I have EVER thought I could work the pattern in Wool-Ease? In fact, Marcia’s poem goes like this:
A little wave.
A little shell.
With perverse Indulgence,
I’m going to hell.
I sat and knitted and made wild plans about selling my body on East 14th, just so I could buy enough of the stuff for a sweater. Come on. You would have thought the same thing.
So my night was this:
1. Sitting on the couch with a cat or two, knitting.
2. Watching Carnivale and K Street and movies I’d be too embarrassed to admit to watching (okay, one was The First Wives Club).
3. Eating dinner: A Luna Bar, some Pirates’ Booty (thought it was appropriate), a V8 for my vegetable and a banana for dessert. (And this is what I do when I HAVE food in the fridge. I’m a snacker by nature.)
Okay, I’m writing about everything except the one thing I want to write about, which is how hard it’s been lately to get off my ass and do my real writing. This is why I started this blog. I started it as a check-in with myself, as a writing prompt, as a way to talk myself into getting to the page. Lately it’s turned into a great way to get me to the knitting needles, not the novel that needs to be finished.
So new goal: One thousand words a day, six days a week. With the new shift at work starting next week, this means I’ll have to get up at six in the morning (after being used to getting up at six in the afternoon). I’ve made this goal before, and I swear it’s the only way I got so far into the novel in the first place. I slacked, though, and knitted my wooly way downhill, and I have to now slog back up to where I was. I can do it, though. I know I can.
See? Back to cheerleading for myself. Go me! Rah! Give me an Are! Oh! I know what I need.
Oh, and I succumbed to the goodness that is Knitty’s new tee-shirt – Yarn Ho!
(and that’s my new didn’t-need-it-but-had-to-have-it used black Yugoslavian leather jacket, justify, justify, justify, it gets COLD here in Cal-I-Forn-I-A)
And Bethany’s in North Dakota!
Let it be said:
I think I might be a little in love with Kris Delmhorst. But can you blame me? The Freight and Salvage was packed, standing room only, and we (all) watched rapturously as she stood unselfconsciously on stage in her black outfit (an homage to Johnny Cash) and cute little black hoodie and sang, letting her voice do what it would. And what it does it perfection. It makes me ashamed that I thought I could sing, once, back in an old life of mine. She closes her eyes…. and it just happens. Click here to download a song that breaks my heart every time. (after you’ve read the rest – this’ll navigate you away – and hey, press the green triangle after it loads – I always have to figure that out the hard way….)
And then today was Christy’s official birthday party! Whoo hoo! Thanks for the messages yesterday! Want some cake?
She likes her Booga J bag. It’s also useful as a hat when one is stuck on Telegraph in Berkeley with nothing else to wear on one’s head. God forbid.
Me, Christy, and her boyfriend Kent at the show. I LOVE taking pictures of myself while holding the camera out. I mean it. I’m stooopid that way.
Luau cake. I mean, really. What are you going to do?
Dunno if you can see this, but it’s a Wonder Woman postcard.
I believe “Suffering Sappho!” is going to be my new war cry!
She got hold of my camera. And some beer, apparently.
Gratuitous coconut shot:
Me’n’the birthday gal. Her friend crocheted the hat for her. Didja know I love love love love my sisters? Go thirty!
Now go back up and load the Kris Delmhorst song. Listen to the words. Sigh…..