I have a shower sponge. Not a real sponge that grew somewhere and had a full life, but one of those plastic poufs. A couple of weeks ago, one end of its little cord handle detached from the sponge. So, I've been tying various knots into the handle so that I can still hang it from a little plastic hook in the shower. Because I'm a real techie. It's kind of hard to tie any decent knot in a wet piece of nylon cord, but i've made almost daily attempts at it. You see, all my knots have slipped out. Today, I threw a clove hitch in it. Cloves are one of my favorite knots for their stability and security. It's already started to slip. Impossible! Maybe I need to use a bend instead. The real question is, why don't I just buy a new sponge?


My new employee has arrived. So far, she has fetched things and coiled cable. I haven't thrown the cable yet, so I cannot tell if it was done properly. Still, I have some reservations about her abilities. I plan to give her a chance, as I should, since her position is considered on par with an internship. I've been spoiled by having a highly trained, super cool board op for the start of the season. So, I'm working on making work for the new employee to secretly, or not so secretly, test her skills.
I've finished knitting the back of the Jaeger silk v-neck. The pattern was poorly written, in a stereotypical european way. That is not to say that european knitwear designers are bad, but that they assume a level of knitting skill or sophistication that is not assumed in american patterns. Basically, I needed a diagram for a tricky decrease, which I and my veteran knitter roommate couldn't puzzle out. Eventually I got it, and I'm glad that the decrease is only used a few times in the pattern. It does make me less likely to make any of the other sweaters in the book. I love the drape of the fabric, so I might forget and make one of the other projects in a year or so. There is a lovely cardigan in the book.
I had a chat with my mother today about sizing in knitting patterns. I was looking at a very charming book of rewritten vintage patterns, none of which came large enough to fit my bust size. Did women in the past only have small breasts?! If I were a savvy knitter, I sould adapt the patterns to fit, but with so many lacy and otherwise complicated patterns, I had to conclude that it wasn't worth the effort. I find that to be the case with a lot of the european pattern houses and often with Vogue. They sometimes omit larger sizes from a pattern that are available in the manufacturer's pattern.
I broke down and bought glassware for the apartment. I'm tired of drinking out of red plastic tumblers like I still live in the dorms. How did all of our glasses disappear? So Travis and Lisa and I broke them in on a bottle of four dollar wine. It was kind of like a classier version of Boone's Farm. None of that kid's stuff for us! I happened across a $1 sale on cobalt glass at Pier One and may return soon for more tumblers. They seem the most likely to disappear, and how many martini glasses do we need?
I'm still working on the pair of merino socks for my grandmother. So, they'll be a belated birthday present. After that, I've another pair to finish for my mom's birthday. I was overly ambitious in my yarn packing, but it's hard to predict what I'll want to work on. I've decided to stash the Peace Fleece cardigan kit that I bought. I don't want a million projects going at once. Also, I'm not sure that I'll want to work on a big worsted weight sweater in the august heat. Maybe when I'm spending more time sitting and waiting in tech, I'll be able to knit more. I did some turbo knitting while teching my last show.


I'm just as bad as the person I was bitching about in my last post. He came strolling in unexpectedly around 930 (who knew?), while I was taking a small break from the stresses of show work. That is, I was listening to some music and chatting with Mike online. And I'd left my media all over his work area (that is, the space next to the board, which he has not so subtly angled towards himself). I had the decency to tell him that I'd repatched the minidisc deck and unpatched the crap mac. I don't, however, plan to repatch the computer for him, or drag my ethernet cable back over to it. There are some things this girl just doesn't do! So, I buckled down and generated some paperwork, looked busy until he left. He seemed aware of the fact that I wanted the place to myself. Oh well.
I got a call from one of the assistant stage managers, who charmingly introduced himself by his full name as though we'd never met. He requested a cd player for rehearsal, which is strange, because they got the one that I'd been using in my living room on Sunday and I never got it back. I informed him of that, and he seemed not to know of its whereabouts. I hope that it hasn't walked off, because I had illusions of being able to listen to music at home again. Also, it is the only portable stereo that we have. I'll have to ask around.

It's a word that describes both my work and a period of my work that I dread. The rest of my summer will be filled with both. Yesterday and today, filled with the latter. I feel like I should be invigorated to put up a new work, but instead, I'm exhausted. I *messed* up my disc/deck structure in my show discs and don't have the time to remaster the whole show. There were expletives used when I explained this to the stage manager, who asked me to move every bloody track in the show. I can assure you that such measures are unnecessary. I shouldn't have taken the choreographer's instructions at face value when I mastered the show. She spent so much time and detail on fades out, but never once mentioned a cross-fade. So I didn't build the show to do that. Whoops.
So I got up at an ungodly early hour to come into the studio to repair some cues. The staff designer had moved many of his things onto my desk, which understandably had me more than a little pissed. I don't want his old styrofoam coffee cup on my desk, or his damn little jar of peanuts. He'd also yanked my ethernet cable and repatched the board, so that I couldn't record from one minidisc deck to another. That is essential to my tasks today. I don't like wasting time pulling cable after someone else's crazy repatch. I don't like not being able to do my work in a timely fashion. I am in a grouchy mood now. Just what I need to take into tech with me!
Maybe I'll partake of a bit of listening therapy--- some Margaret Cho or my new Pretenders cd. That is, once I'm done with the ho-hum studio work.


I just like the word.
Today, I finished-for the time being-my analog editing. Analog, as in, done with my own hands. Fortunately, there was only one tricky edit in the whole show, but that took a half an hour to cut instead of five minutes on the computer. I'm pretty proud of the edit, since I had to match the beats. Thank god for all that musical theory in the hazy past.... As much as I joke about being an anachronism because I learned to edit on tape, I'm really glad that my professor used reel-to-reel (ie, manual editing) as an introduction to editing. Otherwise, it wouldn't have occured to me how to do it. I'm also glad that I know the format and minidisc decks really well. My favorite feature: the frame by frame adjustments in track marker placement. Marvellous! My right shoulder and arm are tired now, from holding it extended against the deck waiting to pick up my cues. Well, we all have to suffer for our art.
I talked to my business partner today, which was a great relief. He is, it seems, still on the qui vive, and out of the hospital. I was concerned about him. It's very hard to maintain a life at home and one out here as well. And it's hard to fag-hag long-distance.


Two posts in one day---must be a red letter day! Alas, no. Today has been such a long day. Or I should say, the past couple of hours have been very long. I had to wait for the other designer to leave so I could get some work done, then I couldn't get any work done. It seems that I cannot import any sound files into my free copy of ProTools. This tool a while to sink in, since the mac that the program is loaded on is super slow. I'm sure it was fast at some point, but that wasn't during this century. So, I couldn't do any digital editing for my show. Why not make some rough cuts on the minidisc, I thought. The right channel on the deck decided to finally give up the ghost, after a long period of intermittently working. I tried all of my stupid sound tech tricks (plugging and unplugging it, blowing in the port and cable, turning it off and on, etc.), and finally decided to swap out the deck for one of our other minidisc components. Well, the deck that I grabbed out of storage doesn't want to record at all. Perhaps it had been used solely for playback before. My frustration level was quite high at that point. Tomorrow, my assistant and I will go through and test and label all of our decks. Maybe we'll even send the sick ones out for repair. It's hard to say with these consumer grade decks. You can only overhaul them so many times before you've spent all the money that you "saved" in not buying the pro grade deck that you should have purchased in the first place.
I'm still at the studio, editing a few minidiscs that I burned for Willlie, and trying to relax. It's nice having the place to myself, but I'd feel better about it if I were able to get something accomplished.

So, I haven't been as faithful to my blogging as I have been in the past. I'm doing summer stock. I've got meetings, meetings, and more meetings, not to mention loads of mundane administrative tasks. So, when do I get to do any engineering?
Well, it isn't as bad as all that. I just haven't been able to get much done in the studio, because the staff sound designer has been tying it up. Hypothetically, we could both work in here at the same time, it just hasn't worked that way. I got used to having solo studio time in college, but I had to sign up for blocks of time, usually in the middle of the night, there. I don't feel like I can enforce such a system here. So, even though I need to edit a show whose tech is fast approaching, I can't really work on it while someone else is blasting their work. I suppose I'll have to come into the studio in the middle of the night. It's been a while since I've done that, though I do still keep late hours!
Such as last night, when I went to the bar (again, there's really only one that we go to in town) and drank three martinis. I'd only intended to have one with the new roomie, but it didn't work out that way. All the booze and smokes did little to repel the mosquitoes last night, nor did the girly-drink scented insect repellent that I sprayed liberally about my person. So I really needed a shower this morning.
My blank media shipment arrived today from the lovely cheddarheads at Full Compass. It turns out that they sent me thirty gold minidiscs when I thought I was ordering from the color collection. What a bargain! It also means that I can reimburse myself, since I had to order them using my credit card. Yeah, cash! I can't believe that this company doesn't have purchase orders or a credit card or something. I can't exactly hold up a hundred dollar bill to the phone while ordering.
Maybe I'll go take a disco nap so I can come back and edit later. Sigh.


Girl Eaten Alive in Own Living Room
The mosquitoes are out in full force. I was innocently watching television, unaware that some hungry bitch was biting me all over. Every single limb of my body has mosquito bites on them. My right foot is swollen from multiple bites, making shoes, and going anywhere, almost impossible. So I decided to fight this on several levels. First, I am taking Benedryl internally. It would be a waste to slather cream all over myself. Second, I treated all of the bites with Adolph's Meat Tenderizer. I decided to go with the unflavored version. Third, I employ rubbing alcohol for touch ups, whenever I have a strong urge to itch. Fourth, I broke down and bought insect repellent, even though it seems sick and wrong to need to wear it indoors.
I watched the Tony awards last night. What a disappointing lot of dross. The ceremony was poorly produced and largely predictable. And what happened to the hour long special ceremony for the design awards? That's the main reason that I watch them every year!
In other news, I talked to the friendly ladies at the IRS (no sarcasm, they were unexpectedly nice, even if they called me ma'am a few too many times) this evening. It seems that further refund will not be forthcoming. I'll jsut have to scale back my expectations. I still haven't received my refund from Massachusetts. Massholes!


The rain season in the Berkshires has finally broken. Yesterday was the first lovely day since I arrived. It was kite flying weather, or lie in the grass listening to Joni Mitchell weather. It was also my day off. I went shopping. One of my roommates and I drove up to Williamstown, which is even more beautiful out of season, and visited a few of my old haunts. I bought/made a name bracelet at Where'd You Get That? (no fooling, that's the name of the store. They rock). The letters are reminiscent of the ones used to designate trains on the MTA, and mounted on a slim black band. It's very retro, but not at all like those horrible engraved ID bracelets. We also went to my absolute favorite record store, which is run by an older gentleman out of the first floor of a Victorian house. He knows everything about everything. I picked up a couple of albums for myself and a Father's Day present for my grandfather. I hope that he likes it. It's a Smithsonian heritage project collection of folk songs. He really enjoyed the Oh Brother Where Art Thou soundtrack, so I suspect this will go over well.
After our daytrip, Nat and I went home and had a lovely dinner. She made an incredible dish of chicken breasts, potato, onion, and untold spices. We also had a bottle of Riesling, purchased from the Store at Five Corners. It was a great change from the hurried nights of ramen noodles.
Other exciting elements of Monday: I had my laundry done, and it came back better than I would have done it myself. It was so neatly folded, with the shirts and sweaters hung in a garment bag. All for the bargain price of eighty cents per pound! Now I have clean clothes to wear, shich shouldn't seem like a luxury, and oddly is.
My minidiscs, purchased from eBay at an unbelievably low price, arrived. I bought fifty of them, so now I can stop being hording the sony minidiscs that my aunt gave me for xmas. This is very nice timing, since I'm throwing together a box to send to Willie in Iowa. I can write minidiscs in the studio, though only at realtime rate. It's fabulous because I have much greater control over the recording level than I do when using my portable. Burning from my laptop is pretty hit or miss, because I usually forget to watch the tiny level display on the portable, or just walk away from it.
Also: I got my palm pilot back online, so I no longer have to rely on the palm of my hand as a reminder system. I had to wait for my cradle to arrive from home before installing new batteries, because all of my records were lost. Thank god I'd recently backed everything up on my laptop.

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