Archives for September 2005
September 2005 Archive
Well, heck! Thank y’all so much! I really loved making that sweater, loved every moment of the process. I fully plan on doing a little post on How I Done That, but maybe tomorrow? Today, I’m busy setting up my new computer. Lala got to me. Yep, she did. My old old old laptop, which didn’t even support my iShuffle because the USB port was so old and slow, has been a pain in the ass for a while, not typing the M key unless it was punched four or five times, and now it’s not liking the J or U, either. And it’s been freezing and crashing for a while now, and I finally got tired of not being able to run more than two programs at a time. I used to open a program and knit a couple of rows while it went kachunk kachunk kachunk and thought about how much work it was opening a Word document for me. It begrudged every moment of it.
But as of last night, I’m running an Apple PowerBook G4, 12 inch, lots of things in it. I’d tell you, but I’ve already forgotten. 512mb something, and 60 gig something else. I know that the 512 part is like the stuff on top of your desk, useful and immediately to hand, and the 60 gig is like the stuff in your filing cabinets – you can still use it, but it takes longer to go reaching for it. And it’s cute! Did I mention how cute it is? And little? Oh, oh, oh.
I’m actually smarter about computers than that sounds. Not like Lala, who knows everything about Macs (helloooo, built-in tech support), but I can get around. But it takes a while, doesn’t it? I’m moving pics over and cleaning out my old computer, making sure I have the old important stuff carefully archived on my external hard drive, my Yahoo briefcase, AND the new computer.
Is it my imagination, or does iTunes sound better from a Mac? Can that be? They’re the same files played on the same speakers, just moved over (and it was so EASY), but they sound better, I swear they do.
Lala has a bandmate who is the best thing ever. Not only has she accomplished more at twenty-six than most of us ever will, but she can play any instrument that crosses her path, she can write songs to rival Nashville’s best, and she is doing a really unselfish thing. She’s pregnant, and because she’s a sailor with realistic dreams of sailing around the world, she knows now is not the time for her to raise a child. So she’s giving the baby to two daddies who can’t wait to meet their new son or daughter, which I think is totally amazing.
But she lives on a boat (a small boat), and it’s going to be winter soon, which means she’ll be pregnant on a boat in winter. I figured she needed something warm, and I figured she deserved it. Also, I just wanted to design an aran, so I did. Forgive all the pictures — I’m pretty proud of it. I hated to give it away, which was a good sign.
Pattern: Mine. Wheee! 40 inch chest, raglan shaping until the sleeve cap ran out, then a k2p2 neck rib until I liked the look of it.
Yarn: Peruvian Highland, from Elann in Malt Heather, 14 balls used.
Could use a blocking, I suppose, but I rarely block. Why start now? The cables are from the Vogue Bible and the ones framing the main cable are the important ones. They are the traditional horseshoe cable. Or, as I like to call them, the Whoreshoe cable. I ran them up the front, back, and sleeves, all facing up to collect the luck to her heart.
Shown: Both front and back of sleeves. I like the underside of the sleeves — I wasn’t sure how to fill in the space as I increased the sleeve width, and I was too lazy to deal with fudging another cable pattern, so I threw in k1tbl separated by single purls as the space allowed, stopping at a total of 11 k1tbls. Makes for a cushy elbow.
Note how I fill it out. Keep in mind that I am not pregnant.
Digit and I both like the neck.
And on Joni!
See how wee she is? I figured if it fit me on a good day, it would fit her pregnant. I was right. Sigh.
Now I’m vaguely worried about other friends being sad I haven’t made them a sweater, but most of them know I have to be moved to make one. And please, if you’re my friend, and you’re pregnant on a boat in winter, I’ll totally make you one. Promise.
I am sorely disappointed. You know when you get that craving for a good bagel, and I mean GOOD bagel, not a Noah’s bready bagel, and you have to have one? I crawled Oakland looking for one this morning, not willing to make the ten-minute trek back to the city where I worked until Sunday, and I now have to admit, there are no good bagels in Oakland. Sigh. I’m chewing dough here, people, and that’s not right.
But I must catch you up on the doings! Such doings lately, most of them to do with music.
Sister Christy had a party! No ordinary party, either, it was the preview performance of the band Deadpan Alley, which will soon be coming to a city near you. I think it will, anyway. They freakin’ rocked the house.
The band is Christy and her best friend Becky, and they’ve been playing together for, oh, maybe fifteen years? I think I last heard them live when we were in high school, and I thought they were fun then. Now, dude. They’re just plain great. And they have a Harry Potter song! Yay! (Also, Christy’s been saying for a while that she’s learning the bass. I believed her. If she tells you the same, don’t listen. She SO KNOWS HOW to play the bass. And she looks good doing it. As does Becky. Man.)
They had the party in a friend’s loft in Oakland, just off Telegraph. It was one of those beautiful last-of-summer nights, and my friend Winter took in the sights:
There was a veritable feast set out for us, and Becky and Christy were delightful hosts.
And then they rocked out:
And the crowd goes wild!
(Yes, that sure is Celia, in one of those weird cross-over thingies. Christy has worked with her for years and told her about my site when she learned that Celia was a knitter. Celia was all blog-what? Huh? And wow! The rest is history.)
So they rocked. I was very, very proud.
And more rocking was had when The Whoreshoes played the Ivy Room in Albany. Man, that’s a cool venue. Still feels like an old cowboy bar, so the girls fit right in. Not that they’re old cowboys or anything. You know what I mean.
And look who was there to hear the gals! More Celia:
There were other knitters in the crowd:
That’s Jane and Becca seated next to the Knitting Katherine, and I met a very nice new-to-the-area knitter named Cordelia (hi, Cordelia!).
I was just happy to hang out with my rockstar.
California readers who like me and believe in civil rights, this is for you (and it really did take less than 30 seconds):
If you support equal civil rights, please read.
This takes less than 30 seconds of time.
CA is so close to the passage of a same-sex marriage
bill. All we need
now is the Governor's signature. Though he's
threatened to veto it, he
HASN'T yet. He's claiming he is going to veto
it because the voters voiced
their opinion on the issue already, but that
was five years ago - and this
guy just announced that he's running for
reelection, so he should care what
you think. We need to tell him that the
people of CA are for legalizing
same sex marriage.
So please call him! It only takes a few seconds.
Call his office at (916) 445-2841 and follow
these simple steps. (You
don't even have to talk to anyone!)
1. Press "2" to comment on legislation
2. Press "1" to comment on AB 849 (AB 849 is the
gender neutral bill that
will allow same-sex couples to marry)
3. Press "1" to support it
That's all there is to it!
Please forward to friends and family who might
lend their support.
To all my Bay Area peeps, two chances to catch The Whoreshoes this weekend! Info on their site: Saturday night will be great at the 12 Galaxies, and I’ll be at the Sunday afternoon show at the Ivy Room in Berkeley. I’ll be knitting, of course, so come sit by me and watch the gals kick up their boots! It’s a good show, yo.
Well, I’m much better now. I must say, going home yesterday morning from work, curling up on the couch with a glass of wine, and flipping my TiVo to The Apprentice, Martha-Stewart-style, did wonders for my mood. Oh, my god, that show is so BAD, and therefore, so GOOD. She’s so trying to be the anti-Trump, and she’s almost pulling it off. Her creepy sweetness prevents her from getting away with it, though. I love it. Instead of saying, "You’re FIRED," she says, "You’ll have to go home." She writes a handwritten note of encouragement after the releasing. She smiles a lot.
I’ve never really been a Martha fan, but ever since the scandal I’m way more on her side. She’s interesting to me now, whereas before she was just too tasteful for garage-sale-me. So that was nice.
Also nice was waking up and meeting La for a little yarn therapy. There’s a baby being born soon who will need a cushy warm sweater, and isn’t that a fine excuse to go to the yarn store? After all, I have NO yarn. Nope. None at all. In the tub. Right now. That’s the truth.
So I’m pretty much over the loss of the house that wasn’t ours. It certainly is the right way to go, though, this whole fall-in-love, make offer next day, counter the next, lose it the next. None of those weeks of wondering and hoping. Now we can do it right, the way we’d planned, take our time, sell the condo if possible, and then buy a house with a little teeny cushion underneath us.
Tonight is my last night of work at this job! Hooray! It’s been great, but the climate is changing, and I’m getting out while the getting’s good. I’ve been stationary for a while now, and I’m looking forward to motion and learning. I need a new challenge. Yup.
Oh, well. All the DPNs in the world didn’t quite get it done…. But you all are amazing. And we were told that had it been a question of $20,000 to $30,000 difference, they would have taken the loss and chosen us, because they loved the letters we wrote. We wanted to keep the little wagon-wheel cottage as it was. We didn’t mind that the water wasn’t connected to the bathroom sink or that the electrical needed a complete overhaul or that the disclosures ran to 108 pages.
But the difference in offers was way WAY more than that (I’m guessing that it was at least $75,000 more than ours), so who can compete with that? We do wish the sellers the best, and hope that someone ends up living in the little cottage rather than tearing it down and building condos.
We know that our perfect house is out there. We just haven’t met it yet. Can you imagine how rad that’ll be? Now I’ll show you a picture taken with my camera phone from the car, because I just want to look at it sometimes….
That’s it, just peeking out back there. It was on 10,000 square feet of land, with apple trees and blackberries. There was an old broken wagon in the front yard, and a wishing well to the side. We would have had room for an alpaca or two. Of course, the counter-offer we made was so high that we’d have been so broke that we would have had to steal the alpacas. And then we wouldn’t have been able to afford much food, so we would have had to eat them, and that would have been terrible and sad. What a narrow escape!
I was purdy sad and had a little cry. Lala was very nice to me. But I like to fall in love, even with houses (okay, especially with houses, I’m a Cancer), even if it means heartbreak. It’s worth it.
Just as well, too, since I took a new job, and only have two more nights here at this one. Then I have a week off, and then I move to a fire/medical 911 dispatch job. It’s a slight paycut, but will eventually be quite a bit more money, and it will be 3 12-hour shifts a week with an extra shift every other week. What that translates to is I’ll have a four-day weekend every other week, and a three-day weekend on the other weeks. Benefits are much better and it’ll be less stressful than dispatching cops, which I can use right about now. It’ll be a commute of about 25 miles, and it’s a bad stretch of 580, but I’ll get used to it. I’m excited about the change. (Even though it’s completely self-indulgent and egotistical to point you to this link, my coworker and sweet friend Kelly wrote a love letter nonpareil, which is here. Thank you, honey. I’ll miss the crap out of y’all.)
So I suppose that would have been a lot of stress all at once, new job, new house, not knowing exactly how much I’ll be taking home in pay. It’s all for the best. I’m disappointed, but it’ll be okay.
And I need to get back to writing. I’ve been busy and preoccupied, and I’m looking forward to getting back into it.
I love you all. Have I mentioned that? I swear I’ll show you something knitting related soon. I still knit, I promise. Going to knit right now, as a matter of fact. We all know that works wonders.
There’s this house that Lala and I pass when we’re out in my neighborhood walking little dogs. Every time we’ve walked by it, we’ve looked and lusted. It’s a little piece of the country, set right there in Oakland. It’s perfect for us. Trust me on this. I won’t say more, lest I jinx it, but it’s perfect in its dilapidation.
Last week I saw online that it was up for sale. On Sunday we went to the open house on a wild fling. On Monday we started to write the offer. On Tuesday we presented the offer. Tuesday night, they countered (turns out that even when we thought we were recklessly overbidding, we had bid WAY lower than anyone else, but they liked our heartfelt cover letter). Today, Wednesday, we’ll accept the counter (they received fifteen offers and countered three of us) and then we’ll bite our nails and jump in very small circles and be unable to sleep.
The chances are so very, very, very slim that they’ll accept us, and IF they do, that we’ll secure the funding (we weren’t even in the market yet! We have no money! I haven’t sold the condo!), but we’re trying. If we don’t get it, we’re no worse off than we are now, which is nice, indeed. If we do, it’s our dream ramshackle-shack. I just thought it wouldn’t hurt to get all my knitter-peeps crossing their DPNs in our general direction.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, CHRISTY! My sister is the coolest, and she got her diploma, Master of City Planning, TODAY, which was nice timing. From Berkeley, might I add? She’s that fucking smart (and beautiful, to boot.) I’m very proud.
And THANK YOU for the response on the last post. It means the world that you’re standing by us, next to us, with us. Thank you doesn’t begin to cover it, but that’s where I’ll start. Thank you.
Oh, so very, very, very busy. Life is SUPER crazy right now, but in a good way. But I just came home from running desperately important errands (a quick coffee visit with my girl thrown in, and I learned that prosciuotto and pesto on a bagette eaten in the sun is very nice).
We had a fantastic weekend, what with going to Becca’s Knit Out picnic at Lake Chabot (I’ve lived here almost ten years and have never been there? What’s wrong with me?), followed by going up to Bolinas where The Whoreshoes (the original typo was The Whorehoes, which is hysterical) gave another outstanding performance. They’re so the favorite Bolinas band. People young and old showed up already wearing their tank tops, and it was standing-room only from the very first song. And they rocked out, honky-tonk style. It was a fantastic show, and we ended the night throwing our air mattress on the balcony (where Swearingen stands in Deadwood) and slept outside. Okay, it was a little beachy-damp. But awesome under the moon.
And now that most of my errands are done, and I only have a few more phone calls to complete, I’m glad to be home. On my doorstep this afternoon I found TWO good things:
So here’s my idea.
The signers of the anti-gay marriage petition in Massachusetts (the so-called Constitutional Amendment to Define Marriage) are listed here and are a matter of public record. It’s a hateful, unloving thing to put your name to, although I support their right to do so.
It’s just that I’d like them to make a positive difference, if only in spite of themselves.
The Human Rights Campaign is the nation’s largest non-profit organization working for the rights of all lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and transgendered individuals. They do a bang-up job, and they have a HUGE fight to fight on a state and a federal level. I throw money at them when I can, but it’s not often, and it’s not as much as I’d like.
But I’d like to donate a gift subscription in the name of the first signer of the petition. For $35, she’ll receive in the mail a cuddly equality bear, and for $50 she’ll get not only the bear, but a nice equality baseball cap, too! I get to include my own (very nice and loving) note to her, as well. I will refrain from asking her what the eff she was thinking, promoting the deliberate stripping away of her fellow American citizens’ civil rights, and instead thank her for opening my eyes to the fact that the divide between people like her and people like me is so wide that I need to take positive action. I will thank her for prompting me to donate to HRC, and wish her love in her life, which is what we all want, right? I just want to marry my girlfriend. It’s just about love, compassion, and respect. That’s all.
There are thirty original signers. I’ll donate $50 in a gift membership for Lois C (although if you can’t afford that, $35 gets the bear). Would you like to buy a gift membership for someone else on the list? Grab a name, in order please, and let us know in the comments section who you’re donating for. (And yes, husband and wife couples who are happily and legally married to each other deserve two separate memberships and their own equality teddy bears.)
1. Lois C.
2. Ronald L.
3. Nancy A.
4. Robert H.
5. Tom E.
7. C. Joseph
8. Raymond L.
9. Anita W.
10. Patricia M.
11. Richard F.
12. Bronwyn E.
13. Kristian M.
14. Lura L.
15. Roberto S.
16. Carole A.
17. Philip D.
18. Joseph R.
19. Jossie E.
20. Leonard L.
21. Richard W.
22. Thomas A.
23. Madelyn M.
24. Alana L.
25. David G.
26. Gilbert A.
29. Walter H.
30. Kathleen W.
Work from love, and have fun.[Added later – I just pledged, and here’s what I wrote (they don’t give you much room). "Thank you for helping me realize that for our laws to reflect equality for all American citizens, I must begin to take concrete actions, donate money, and raise awareness. I do know we both believe in love and respect, and I wish you both in your life."]