Monthly Archives: September 2004

Book Signing

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If you’re in the Boston Area and haven’t already heard: Amy Singer will be at Circles in Jamaica Plain on October 12th to support her new book Knit Wit. Amy is the editor of Knitty.

Rumor has it there is going to be a potluck. If you’d like more information contact Circles cause I ain’t got any more than dat. With any luck and pot(kidding) I’ll be there!

Coming soon to a blog near you…the first (and last) installment of: “How I wore Mens Underwear to Work”.

File Under: Too much information

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In this installment of “I Wore Men’s Underwear to Work”….

My brother-in-law works for Fruit of the Loom. We get a lot of underwear for Christmas. It’s nice, if not a bit awkward. My husband received a set of adult sized Superhero under-roos for Christmas last year. Who knew they even existed? Well, we are now the proud owners of a Superman t-shirt and the matching flaming red briefs.

I also received flaming read undies, a female version in a “boy short” style. Now, my husband doesn’t wear briefs.

That, coupled with the fact that both garments are flaming red, led to their stay in the bottom of our laundry basket for TEN MONTHS.

TEN MONTHS? Are we horrible housekeepers or do we have an obscene amount of underwear to hold us over? Neither. We were simply without a washing machine for those TEN MONTHS. Good God, can you imagine a worse kind of hell? But I digress. We weren’t willing to shlep these measly pairs off to the laundromat and then proceed to pay a butt load of money to wash them. So in the basket they remained.

Ahh, a new washer comes home to us. We are back in the laundry business. I wash away. A single load of red clothing is laundered and returned to their proper drawer homes. Or so I thought….da dun dun duuuuuuunnnnnnn .

This past Wednesday I woke up to another day of rainy cold miserableness. I decided that I needed a little spark in my day. This could be accomplished by donning a pair of flaming red women’s “boy short” underwear. I dress in the dark of my bedroom and then negotiate my way to work with an unlikely kick in my step. Soon after arriving I take my first bathroom break.

Ekkk…I’m wearing my husband’s red Superman briefs.

Embarrassed? Me?

Nah, I just zip up, giggle a whole bunch, and spend the rest of the day saving the world.

Have you hugged your banned book yet today?

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This week is National Banned Book Week. I spent some time at The Book Store tonight putting together a display. I learned a lot. Aside from the obvious government bannings in the early century it seems that there are a lot of books out there that have complaints (or challenges) filed against them . Book ‘em Dan-O! (Pun intended…just wanted to hear you all groan.)

Are you There God it’s Me Margaret by Judy Blume being one. (Side story here. I had a male customer bring his young daughter in to buy this book the other day. He said he read it and loved it and felt she HAD to read it. Go Dad!) And who could forget everyone’s favorite boy wizard? I feel as though these are fairly innocuous books. I read many of them as a child and student. It seems that some parents out there are compelled to file complaints against them for filling their children’s minds with swear words, sex talk, and (horror of all horrors) stories of deviant behaviors. They’re asking that these books be removed from bookstores and libraries. These books are the least of their worries! They certainly don’t force themselves into the hands of the innocent. Some may brooch subjects that are difficult and should be exposed at the right time for the child. But to say that no person should be able to read it ever?! Especially books that are innocent – The Giver, Harry Potter Series(#7 most challenged books),Daddy’s Roommate(#2 most challenged book), and Where’s Waldo?! I don’t care what you say, these are books are not corrupting our youth.

I’m guessing the fear is that letting kids and “young adults” (really, what is a young adult? I’m 28 and I would argue that I’M a young adult) read a few challenged books would raise a generation of tolerant, swearing, and sex-loving deviants? Hmmm, I’ve read at least a third of the 100. Shit, I’m going to go seduce my husband and then tomorrow I may even call my gay friend to see if they want to pick up a copy of Where’s Waldo instead of going to work. Is that so freakin’ wrong?!

The Big Sack

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This is the name of the sweater that I’m knitting for Rob. I’m part of the man-a-long over at Knit-o-Rama. I did have to wait until we were married to knit my beloved something. I don’t care what you say…I wasn’t risking it for anything. That damn curse. Curses are for real. Look at the Red Sox.

Could there be any more unattractive name for a sweater pattern? Who wants to wear a big sack? My husband. Of all the patterns I showed him (and there were a ton) this is the one he chose. It’s a fun knit. However, my bossy-ness got the best of me.

I swatched and didn’t get gauge. Rather than change my needles I decided to change the size I was knitting. I am knitting a large, ready to get a small sized sweater. My row gauge was also off. Now here comes the bossy part. I decided to adjust the pattern to meet my row gauge. It involved Excel Spreadsheets, hair being pulled out and all kinds of yelps. I triumphed. I was worried about the sleeves. The Big Sack is designed to have raglan sleeves. I figured if my row gauge is off, I need to adjust the rate at which I do the decreasing for the armholes. And on it went. There was some complicated ratio of decrease two stitches for every 2 rows and then every 4 rows or some retardedness. Notice the *was*. Yah, you guessed it, it didn’t work.

Rob will just have to wear this (beware of flagrant product placement):

Bossiness is dangerous. Mind you, most of my wedding pictures include scenes of me bossing people around. Not pretty. With this project I was proud of myself for figuring it out. Adjusting the pattern to meet my needs. The end result? The sleeve shaping looked uneven and not so much raglan like. So much for that. I did learn that Raglan’s need to be decreased EVENLY across a pattern. Fun lesson or lesion as I originally typed it. Uh-huh. Sure. Knitting is learning to recognize your limits and learning to accept defeat. And putting up with all the lesions.

But did I give up, nah. I ripped and I’m just following the pattern for the sleeve shaping. I finished the front this weekend and I’m a few inches short of the arm shaping on the back. I’m thinking that it’ll be alright. It’s a big sack for crying out loud. It’s big and bulky…arm holes that are a bit shorter than the intended pattern shouldn’t change the earth’s orbit.

A few yarn details…I’m using Green Mountain Spinnery’s Mountain Mohair. I love the feel of the yarn. It’s not itchy and very soft. However, there are quite a few spots of white along the yarn where the dye didn’t penetrate. This is annoying. Knot annoying. Some of the strands get mighty thin in some places. I wonder how they’ll hold up to the activity of a winter wear sweater.

Love Hate Relationship

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I hate knitting. Really. I hate it. I’m done. Throwing it down. For real.

Okay, not really. But that’s how I feel right now. I went ahead and bound off the rest of the collar on my Shapely Tank. I had picked up the stitches and knit 6 rows in Garter Stitch. As I bound off and held it up to me I saw that the collar flared out from the body. I thought, huh, this isn’t going to do. I considered my options. I figured it would most likely flatten out when blocked.

Then I went to Google and found this…“Pick Up The Correct Number Of Stitches” and this….“Picking Up Stitches For Necklines and Armholes”. In fact, there is a boat load of know-how here. El sucko. Apparently I picked up too many stitches. What the heck? How was I to know?

I hate being a beginning knitter. Why can’t every skill you learn have all of the disclaimers outlined from the beginning. How did I not know this? Total bummer. So, I’m taking a break from the Shapely Tank. Sorry, no finished pictures.

I am going to pick up the Big Sack Sweater from Stitch ‘n Bitch for Rob. I’m doing this as part of my first online knit-along.

This is a fun knit and I’ll post pictures of my progress next week. It hasn’t been without its drama. I have definitely learned a lot and have come a long way. I just have a long way to go.


I started another book. It had to be a thin paperback. These are easier to take on the train. Michael Chabon is one of my favorite authors. In fact, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay is one of my favorite books of all time. It’s pretty incredible. I picked up The Mysteries of Pittsburgh last night. This is his first novel. The voice is much different than The Drink Before the war. It’ll take a bit to switch gears. So far, so good.

Erin, not to worry, your book is my home book now I’m hoping to be done with it next week.

And she’s off…

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I finished A Drink Before the War by Dennis Lehane. This is his first book. Apparently he is like a fine wine, he gets better with age. This is a good thing, because all of those people that rave about Mystic Riverwould be labeled “crazy” in my book. And really, who wants to be labeled anything in anyone’s book? The book wasn’t horrible, but I definitely wouldn’t recommended it.

I’ve successful mastered picking up stitches. Thanks to Allison at Circles and a nifty new pair of #5 Addi Turbos I’m in the process of casting off the collar. I had already been shown how to pick up stitches once before…thick head!

So, I’m in bed last night knitting. I REALLY wanted to finish everything on the tank last night. My husband is convinced that my knitting in bed is some sort of horrible statement about the state of our relationship. I’m trying to convince him that it’s just like reading in bed, only I’m using my hands. His biggest complaint, I talk too much when I’m knitting. He used to be able to read peacefully in bed before the knitting joined us. And now, now I chatter away about everything and anything that pops into my head. At that point in the day it’s nothing really interesting or even compelling – just chatter. Humph. I don’t think there is anything that’s going to convince him that knitting in bed is a good thing…

In closing, I’d like to introduce another one of my family members:

This is FutureMan. Named after a character in this movie. There is nothing dainty about this cat. There is nothing stealth or agile about this cat. This cat is large and in charge. Or at least he likes to pretend he is. He eats a ton of food and behaves as though he has never been fed in his entire life. Think Chunk from the movie Goonies and you’ve got our cat to a T. He’s kind of cute though.


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Has anyone picked this book up yet? It’s massive, 800 pages. I’m intrigued. Check out this review at from a September 17th post. The byline is, “When Harry Potter met Jane Austen.”
It looks wonderful. Better yet, it’s a first-time novelist. Which is one of my favorite categories.

However, I really would have to take out a second mortgage to buy it and then have to go to the gym just to be able to carry it around. Why are hard covers so damn expensive? And 800 pages, that’s crazy talk. All the same…it’s going on my virtual nightstand.

It’s 6am do you know where your Husband is?

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It’s 6am and where am I….work. Blech. This man is the best husband ever because he drove me here this morning.

Little old me forgot to check the train schedule before I committed to this duty at the ungodly hour of 6am. Can’t get here from there….

I’m off to Circles this evening to finish the Shapely Tank (or at least give it that old college try).

I finished Bone People last night. All I can say at this point is – wow. One of the best books I’ve ever read. I definitely need a few days to process internally and then I’ll review it here!

Learn something fun today!