May 22, 2006

@#$@#ing Heel Flap!!!

Posted in Knitting: WIPs at 2:47 pm by tatertot

This is entirely my fault. I admit it, and now I want the problem to go. away. For once, ladies, we're going to be getting into "hey, how does her real life go? does it suck as bad as her knitting?"

Usually, the answer to that question is no. It is why it still actually relaxes me to knit, even though I ALWAYS try to do patterns that are beyond my capability. It is because my life is generally smooth and bearable that I take such flagrant risks with sticks and string. This is not, dear readers, to imply that my life is always smooth sailing or that nothing ever goes wrong in my life. That would be misleading you horribly. What it means is: usually I am not blindsided, and usually it is not done by boys. So imagine, if you will, my mental state last night after realizing that I had been completely blindsided by a boy. I had been corresponding with him regularly and things were most definately moving in a… not platonic direction. And THEN my best friend found out he had a girlfriend. And she went apeshit on him (I love her). We're talking… no mercy, balls in his throat apeshit. And he starts arguing back and telling me she's a crazy bitch and all this while, I had NO idea they were arguing about him having a girlfriend. So there's a lot of me going "Huh?" and my best friend going "you son of a bitch!" and him going "your friend is a psycho!".

This is not to say he was an important fellow. He wasn't. The only important role he had in anything is that he was my best friend's fiance's best friend. And I'm not upset about the loss of whatever it was he thought he had going on. Because let's face it: as soon as he called my best friend a bitch, I was no longer interested in him. He did not have a snowball's chance in hell of ever doing anything with me ever ever at all.

So really, when I say blindsided, what I mean is: something was not what I thought it was. And though I knew Corrie and I were best friends, this had never really been put to the test. But she immediately came to my defnese and was SO loyal the whole time, because I know it would have been easier for her to say "Tasha, here's what's up. I can't really help because I don't want to cripple things between my fiance and him". But she didn't. She verbally assaulted him on every level. And then! Oh my! Then her fiance, of his own vocation, told his friend what an asshole he was and how "not cool" everything he had done was and they got into a heated arguement. This was after Corrie and I had smoothed things over with The Boy for her fiance's sake, because we didn't want him to lose a friend over something this silly.

I am going to knit her fiance everything he wants for the rest of his life. And her, too. That's how much I appreciate their loyalty. My friends are so totally kick ass.

But The Boy caused a rough spot. Because I suspected it for a little while but never called him on it or followed up on it and because I was so fascinated with how attractive he was, I ignored every bitof common sense I have ever possessed. I am not, I want you to understand, the kind of girl who is usually completely overthrown by some cute guy. That isn't me at all. This, though… Ugh. it rubs me the totally wrong way. It upsets me.

The conclusion to that story is: The Boy asked if we could still be friends, and even though I wanted to tell him to go fuck himself sideways, I said yeah (so that I wouldn't be the one to dissolve he and Corrie's Fiance's friendship.). (But I will now begin my Silent Treatment Campaign).

And in KNITTING NEWS: I have reached the heel flap of Keri's Sick Day Sock II. I only did two rows on the flap, and I did it wrong, because I was so distraught over this whole Boy Thing that I wasn't even paying attention. So now I have to tink back two rows of heel flap. Not looking forward to it, so I have pursued some… fortification, shall we say.

More word on the sock later today, probably.

EDIT: I have made it past the @#$*ing heel flap, and even past the turning of the heel.  I have picked up gusset stitches and am merrily decreasing my way to madness.  The sock should be done soon!
KNITTING: Keri's Sick Day Sock
LISTENING TO: "You Know What They Do To Guys Like Us In Prison" – My Chemical Romance
READING:: Meditations for Women Who Knit Too Much by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee


May 21, 2006

Have you ever noticed…

Posted in Knitting at 12:36 am by tatertot

That even when you have FORBIDDEN yourself from buying more yarn until you get your stash under control, you will still buy an unreasonable amount of sock yarn.

Okay, I will now clarify. There are several things coming to my defense.

    1. This was an online yarn shop that was new to me. I think all knitters will back me up on this: sometimes, you just can not STOP yourself from trying out a new yarn shop. You want to see what kind of deals you can get, what their selection is, how quickly they can get the product to you, how courteous they are, etc.The yarn shop in question was Angelika's Yarn Store. Her double point needles were cheap and metal, the way I like them. And she has, hands down, the largest selection of Lorna's Laces that I've ever seen in one place. FURTHERMORE, all the colors that I wanted were available. [In retrospect, I probably should not have told you about this, as now everyone might go there and keep her in a perpetual sold-out state. I hope not. This was a tremendous find.] I will keep you posted on how the rest of this goes.
    2. As stated above, this is the largest selection of Lorna's Laces that I've come across, with all the colors in stock. Anyone who buys Lorna's Laces Sheperd Sock knows that this is a rare thing. Certain colorways ('Bittersweet' and 'Layette', for example) have a way of flying off the shelves. Now, I LOVE Lorna's Laces. So at ten dollars a skein, I couldn't stop myself.
    3. I needed another set of metal DPNs very badly, and since Size 1 seems to be what I use most often, and they are already employed in another sock, I was desperate. In fact, this was the only thing I intended to buy. And yet I walked away with 16 skeins in 8 colorways of Sheperd Sock.

The colorways were Bittersweet, Layette, Mother Lode, Mt. Creek, Purple Iris, Lucky Stripe, and two colorways that were exclusive to Angelika's – Pacific Berries and Indian Summer.

Now there's probably a special place in Knitting Hell (you know the place: too hot for knitting and stocked full with bamboo needles and novelty yarns) for me. Because I am going to go against every nice thing that every knitter has said about the Princess of Sock Yarns: Koigu. Specifically, KPPPM. I had heard countless people singing the praises of this particular yarn and so, even though it felt a little rough to the touch at the time, I bought it anyhow. You will see the sock that resulted soon enough. But let me say this: this yarn is too rough for sock yarn, for my taste. And I dislike the color transitions in the variegation. (This could REALLY be the fault, however, of the colorway that I selected. A pukey blue and pink and purple blend that was for my mother and that I loathe entirely.) If someone can prove me wrong on this KPPPM thing, I will take it back. But I don't think you're going to be able to. I wasn't impressed with Koigu. It's not exactly awful, but it wasn't worth the praises.

Lorna's Laces, however, is. Go buy it immediately.

LISTENING TO: "Temperature" by Sean Paul
KNITTING: Sock II of Keri's Sick Day Socks (these have my undivided attention right now. I want to finish them already.)

May 7, 2006

I am not a Liar.

Posted in Knitting: WIPs at 12:16 am by tatertot

Okay, true to my word, I have brought a post with pictures. But before we get to that, I must say: does anyone else see the irony in my FINALLY coming through with the photos within the time frame that I swore I wouldn’t be posting? Really, I’m like the biggest liar ever. But a really honest one.

Right. So here are the pictures, and then there is even more posting. So if you need to go to the bathroom, and thought you’d just scan this quickly before you wet your pants, I have screwed you. Go pee now. Don’t wait. (Can you tell how often I speed-read before sprinting upstairs to the bathroom?)

These pictures, by the way, will open in a new window when you click on them.

This is a recent photo of yours truly. The last one did me NO justice.

This is the stash. Notice the top row is ALL sock yarn.

This is the sock I’m knitting my mother for Mother’s Day. Roughly 4″ have been added to this sock since the picture was taken. (What can I say? I have a LOT of knitting time at my job.)

These, at long last, are Keri’s sick day socks. Well, one of them.

And now that the knittery is done, I’d like to climb the stairs of my soapbox to say a short word about something near and dear to my heart: vegetarianism, and a cruelty free lifestyle. As a note, this could get long-winded and you are welcome to skip ahead. But if you do decide to do that, please at least look into vegetarianism at a page like VegSoc.Org or Peta2.

To those of you who may read my blog with anything resembling regularity (bless your hearts): this message is the most that I will ever address the issue head on here. I think. In the future, it might be mentioned in passing, but perhaps will not monopolize so much of an entry. Though vegetarianism is VERY important to me, I have a feeling that it isn’t what most of you came here for.

To the point: Go Vegetarian.

For one thing, it’s good for your health. Tremendously good for your health. It will cut down on your cholesterol, which contributes to 8 out of 10 of the leading causes of death. It will help out your digestive system – especially your colon- which has a very difficult time handling meat (especially red meat). If you’re trying to lose weight, the average vegetarian loses 27 pounds their first year of vegetarianism. (Less, if you weren’t overweight to begin with). And only 2% of vegans are obese.

Woah there. “Vegan?” You say. “What’s the diff.?”

Vegans, in addition to not eating meat, do not eat any animal byproducts. This includes dairy and eggs. They also don’t WEAR animal products, like wool and leather.

I follow a vegan diet, but don’t live a 100% vegan lifestyle simply because at the moment, I disagree with a few of their principles. Wool, for one, can be extracted without doing any harm to the sheep. If you practice conscientious consumerism, you won’t make the mistake of buying wool from a company that endorses cruelty to animals. Do a little research! It’s your money, and you should know where it is going!

So I am technically just a cruelty-free vegetarian. For now. Any vegans out there are welcome to persuade me to make the full transition (the only thing currently standing in my way is honey and wool/non-cruel animal fibers).

Some might argue that milk and eggs are okay if purchased from a local farm where it is ensured that the animals are not on hormones or treated cruelly. You are probably right, as far as ethics are concerned. But consider this: humans are the ONLY creature to drink the milk of another animal. Milk which is intended to bulk a baby calf up to 1,000 pounds within it’s first year. I, personally, don’t like weight gain. So why would I drink this? Furthermore, do you feed your cat or dog YOUR breast milk? No. Because it’s strange.

Or consider eggs. A chicken’s menstrual cycle. Literally. The sort of egg that humans eat on a regular basis is an unfertilized egg which the chicken produces. Why on EARTH would you eat menstruation? Again, the scenario of: what if it was a human’s menstruation? Lack of blood in chicken menstruation does not make this any less disgusting for me.

Even if you disagree with my milk/egg policy (which is fine, of course), there is NO reason that anyone should continue eating meat. It is cruel and absolutely unnecessary. People can most certainly satisfy their nutritional needs without eating meat.

Hopefully, after reading this, it will get a few of you thinking. Even if you aren’t sure if this is for you, please. Look into it. Do a little reading. Meet your meat. Look at the websites or check out books from your local library on vegetarianism, veganism, or meat production. End animal cruelty.

READING: Soldier by James Gibbore
LISTENING: “All These Things That I’ve Done” by The Killers
KNITTING: sock I of the Parrot Juice Socks; sock II of the Keri’s Sick Day Socks; Megan’s basketweave scarf; sock I of Mom’s Mother’s Day Socks
WATCHING: Hoodwinked

April 18, 2006

Thus far, an AMAZING day!

Posted in Knitting: WIPs at 7:53 pm by tatertot

Okay, delivering this bit of dodgy news to you guys is the worst thing I've had to do all day.  I finished sock One of Keri's Sick Day Socks (and I think it is beautiful; I'm quite proud of my handiwork) but can not seem to find a digital camera anywhere in the house so that I might upload a photo for you to see.  I will try very hard to get that done this week.  It might be that you have a picture of a finished PAIR of socks instead of a single sock.  Who knows.  🙂

Aside from that, this has been a pretty good week and an EXCELLENT day.  Most excellent.  My spanish class was cancelled, I was able to attend a speech that I enjoyed (relatively), and then I came home and have been drinking and doing pretty much everything that I really like to do.  

In an hour or two, I'm going to start drinking more aggressively and pick up around the house. Laundry and such.  i want the house to be really clean by Thursday and Friday, since I'll be having people over.  And I think it will be a pleasant surprise to the family to come home to a clean house.  I'm sure Mom would really appreciate it.

 So this is a pretty good day so far.  I might even indulge in a little drunk knitting – I'm feeling adventurous!

The only true downside to the day is all the work I have to do on my speech, which I will need to sober up and do after I finish cleaning the house. It needs a lot of work and so forth, but i'm not willing to do it while the day is still so pretty outside and I'm enjoying myself so much.

READING: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
LISTENING: "MakeDamnSure" Taking Back Sunday
KNITTING: Megan's Peony Basketweave scarf
WATCHING: "MakeDamnSure" music video

March 31, 2006

My head is THIS CLOSE to exploding.

Posted in Knitting: FOs at 1:18 pm by tatertot

Um… hello everyone.

I said in my first post, you may recall, that this was an exercise in consistency, or in maintenance of a journal/diary type thing.  I've always wanted to keep one, as I think they are incredibly useful and it always charms my socks off to find things that I've written a year or more ago.  Yes, you read correctly.  I charm myself.  Not that the old written things are especially good, but it amuses me to find things that I've written that I don't even remember writing.  It's like… I recognize my own writing style and word usage, so it's something familiar and yet new at the same time. 

Do I ramble like this all the time?

Anyhow, please forgive lapses in posting.  I am either knitting or studying or going to class or working when I'm not posting. I'm a very busy girl. I will try to be better about this though.

I did start this post with a point.  A few actually.  I will make you a bulleted list to try and control my rambling. 

  1. I have a feverish sinus infection.  So I feel like I've been hit by a garbage truck twice and then tossed in to the back with the refuse.  Needless to say, I think this sucks.
  2. I have to go to a military ball tonight with my insufferable infection.  And I'm wearing a strapless dress.  So there is a very real danger that I might sneeze/cough my way right out of the top of that dress.  If you don't hear from me for a couple of months and when you do, it's under a penname in a new state, you can assume that this is what happened.  I am thinking of wearing a suit instead.
  3. I finished something.  A while ago, and am just getting around to posting the photo, but nevertheless.

(A note. I am TRYING to post this photo. But wordpress is being a bitch about the whole thing.)

Boom, baby!

These are the Ribbed Socks that I've been prattling on about.  I bet you guys thought I was kidding!  I really finished them.  Here they are blocking.  As soon as they finished, I sent them to my grandmother, who taught me to knit in the first place.  You can read more about these socks here. (Please note: this is posted on a blog that I share with a friend of mine.  Please don't comment there. Comment here.)

READING: Capt. Hook by J.V. Hart
LISTENING: “For Miles” by Thrice
KNITTING: Keri's Sick Socks (I know. Another pair. Relax.)
WATCHING: The Simpsons: Season 7

February 11, 2006

Goodbye, mind! Hello, Knitting Olympics!

Posted in Knitting: WIPs at 4:04 pm by tatertot

A friend once said, whilst we were studying for an unrealistically large Shakespeare final, “Every time I turn the page, I feel myself slipping slowly into insanity.”

I am confident that she has not ever knit a single stitch in her life.  Last night, while watching the opening ceremonies and parade of nations for the Olympics, I realized something.  With every stitch, I feel myself slip sliding at break-neck pace into insanity.  (Truthfully, this is no different from any other knitting venture.  Starting with the shove off at the yarn store when I’m building my “don’t need any more, thanks” stash, picking up speed when I find the pattern, and finally shooting downhill like a rocket with every stitch).

And by the way, this Shaun White character who snowboards for Team USA?  He is totally going to eat up all my knitting time.  Wow.

So, I’m at 5% finished on the baby blanket.  I think.  Going to accomplish much more today for sure, and since a Nor’Easter is going to dump a good foot of snow overnight at Chez Tot, I’ll have uninterrupted knitting time tomorrow.  Maybe Monday! Oh glorious snow days, please come soon!

READING: Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell: a Novel by Susannah Clarke (I know! I’ve been reading this forever.  But in my defense, it is a HUGE book!)
LISTENING: “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown” by Jim Croce
KNITTING: The K.O. Baby Blanket
WATCHING: Donnie Darko 

February 1, 2006

A (fuzzy) mind of its own…

Posted in Knitting at 6:56 pm by tatertot

I think my stash is asexually reproducing.  Behind closed doors, when it has been untouched for a scant few hours, when nothing has been introduced from the outside world for a while.  I’m not sure at exactly what point that I began contemplating taking over a room in the house exclusively for yarn and knitteries, but I certainly realized today that it is a dire need.  (I ask that you ignore the fact that I’m in much more desperate need of an office.) 

When my stash isn’t inexplicably multiplying upon itself, it’s sending subliminal messages to buy more yarn with all the subtlety of a sledgehammer. I nearly purchased 5 (count them- FIVE!) skeins of sock yarn and two extra sets of double point needles, thereby talking myself out of nearly $75.  I was all the way at the “checkout” screen before I realized exactly what I was doing.  I need help. 

In the mean time, I’ve put myself on a yarn diet.  I’ve lost control of my stash and am forbidding myself from buying yarn until I’ve done something with all of the yarn that I’ve bought. 

This afternoon bodes a trip to the DMV, which guarantees an estimated four hours of knitting time, which will hopefully decrease the size of the stash…

Help!  I’m being overrun by a rebellious yarn stash!

READING: Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell: a Novel by Susannah Clarke
LISTENING: “I Will Follow You Into the Dark” by Deathcab for Cutie
KNITTING: Small drink coasters
WATCHING: Monk: Season Three


January 30, 2006

“I’m not sorry, and it’s probably going to happen again.”

Posted in Knitting: WIPs at 8:47 pm by tatertot

We’re going to start this off talking about you.  Yes, you.  It will, obviously, return to me (I do so love talking about myself) but initially, I will graciously share some attention with you. 

This is a vague little scenario, but I’m sure it applies to everyone at some point or another.  You get in a… perhaps not an all-out arguement, but a little angry encounter with someone.  Let’s just say it’s the little cashier/order-taker at Wendy’s whom you specifically asked not to put cheese on your burger and then furthermore had an extensive conversation about lactose intolerance.  Let’s just say.  And then you open your burger foil and can hardly believe your eyes.  Cheese is on your $#%@ing burger.  So you storm up to the counter in a fit of rage slowly, and with class, approach the self-same cashier who took your order, and then she looks at you blankly and says “well, if you didn’t want the cheese, why did you pay for it?” And at this moment, you are angry but can only manage indignant muttering and a lot of soundless mouth-flopping.  In the car, once you have slammed out of the fast foot restaraunt, you know exactly what you should have said.  But, that is neither here nor there because you will never have the chance to say it.  Which makes you the tiniest bit angrier. 

That was the “you” moment.  Now we’re back in “me” mode.  I have had countless moments in my life where I thought of the perfect thing to say when the source of my anger was nowhere in sight.  Well, last night had dinner in a reasonably well-respected dinner place, I had my vengeance.  I ruthlessly let the person (a sibling) feel the full force of my eloquent anger, and then when confronted about it by another person at my table, was given the opportunity to use ANOTHER line that I’ve always wanted to use.  Can you believe that?  Golden opportunity.  Of course, the line was only “I’m NOT sorry, and it’s probably going to happen again.  In fact, considering who we’re talking about, it most definately will.”

I looked smug for the rest of dinner.  It becomes me.

Just to keep it interesting, a little progress shot of the sock.  This is sock one (of two) and is my First Sock Ever.  It is surprisingly easy except for how annoyingly little you can do without needing to reference the pattern again.  I’ve heard that certain knitting persons, such as the Yarn Harlot, have knitted so many socks that patterns are things of the past (unless intricate patterns or new styles are involved, presumably) and I find this hard to believe.  But, since I’m signed up to participate in the 200Sox KAL, I might be of a different opinion by the end of the year, as I will be a sock knitting machine.


I stuffed the skein of yarn into the sock so that you might have a better ideaof what this bad boy looks like once something is actually within it. 

READING: Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell: a Novel by Susannah Clarke
LISTENING: “Buenas Noches from a Lonely Hotel Room” by Dwight Yoakam
KNITTING: 2×2 ribbed fire-colored socks (1 of 2)
WATCHING: Funny Farm