We were supposed to tech the show today, which sort of happened. The company and artistic director were held up in the snow storm (it is the end of November, after all), and we had to wait. Luckily, it was a union shop, which meant that we had to be out of there by a specific time, rather than letting it drag on and on. And, thanks to all of the hold-ups, I managed to get a lot of knitting done on the *secret* xmas present that I'm making for a family member. I have a fair amount of down time during the show--the whole first act--so I'm knitting and getting paid. The hat looks really good. I'm making it out of hand dyed wool that I purchased at Colorful Stitches. The color blocks made interesting stripey blotches with a kind of lightening bolt motif.
We finally got our paychecks signed today. This is a bad sign. Late checks without apology. Checks on time without a signature. Postdated checks to the principle dancers. I will never work for this company again. And I'm cashing the check tomorrow.


It's Thanksgiving Day and I'm sitting in a hotel room about a thousand miles from home. It's week two of the bus and truck tour from hell. Actually, that implies that we have a bus; we don't. The company travels with two Penske trucks, two minivans, and various personal vehicles. We had to pester the production manager to get the minivan (into which the crew and our belongings barely fit), as we originally had a retired police cruiser, with broken spedometer. Five people in a sedan is a tight fit. Six people with their bags is impossible.
Most of our problems on the tour stem from lack of organization and piss-poor management. The company really needs a company manager in addition to the production manager. We just finished a rough week at a high school in Sheffield, mainly hindered by the owners of the venue. They refused to move giant piles of scenery and general crap, meaning many of our man-hours were wasted carting around their things. The we had to reset it at load out. I think that the school doesn't have vast experience in presenting.
Luckily, there are a couple of people on the crew with whom I would like to remain friends after this tour has ended: Matt, our master carpenter, and Karen, the master electrician. Matt and I became fast friends when we were stranded at the Albany airport for three hours by the company. That was a big bad omen, if ever there was one. Matt is another Chicagoan, with a wonderful sense of irony and sarcasm. We daily tell each other how glad we are that the other is on the tour. Karen is my road roommate (but not at the convent where we are normally lodged--luckily, the company recognizes that we need some personal space). She reminds me a great deal of Ingrid, my wonderful sophomore year roommate. They have very similar voices, and an easy going attitude that is essential when dealing with all of the mess this tour generates.
Karen and I went to Lenox on our day off this week. Lenox is quite different in the winter than in its tourist summer days. Our main objective was to visit Colorful Stitches, a LYS with a beautiful ad in all the knitting magazines, and to get a decent cup of coffee. The wonderful side effect is that I also got to know Karen.
I am teaching Karen how to knit. It's a pleasure. A little over a year ago, my mother taught me to knit. It was very hard for her to resist the temptation to take my first project away and do it herself, as her grandmother had done so many years before. So, when Karen complimented me on my patience, I also silently thanked my mom. My desire to take up knitting brought my mother and I closer together this past year, and I think that Karen's desire to learn is helping to forge a friendship between us.


Ok, I'm not very faithful to my blog. I don't update very often any more, probably because I don't have a lot going on at the moment. I'm passing time until I have to leave for tour. Yesterday, I decided to burn many of my cds to minidisc, to save space, etc. It has proven to be more time consuming than I had anticipated. My minidisc player is supposed to insert track marks in the appropriate places. This only happens sporadically, possibly because of the frequent bleed through of tracks on cds. So, then I must listen to the minidisc, sometimes in its entirety, to insert the track marks where they belong. Makes me a little envious of the people with NetMD players, but I'm generally satisfied with my little MZ-R700.
I'm still knitting up a storm, mostly in preparation of xmas. There is a limit to the number of knit garments that people need, so I'm trying not to overdo it. Also, I want to maintain the distinction between homemade and handmade. I'm currently working on a scarf made out Sirdar Snowflake for a friend who has pestered me for over a year to make a scarf---except she's allergic to wool. I am skeptical of all of the self-diagnosed wool allergies out there. Of course, some people may legitimately be allergic to the fiber, but I think that most people are just intolerant of the coarser fibers. There are some wonderful new blends (and old blends) of wool that are nothing like the dreaded wool sweaters from childhood.

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