So, to everyone who says I "never" update my blog: I've been off in Iowa City for the past week. Now, I'm not claiming that they don't have the internet in Iowa. I was busy doing other things. I'll try to post about some of them soon.
Other things I've done lately: I went to a really wonderful wedding yesterday with Lewis and Wayne. The bride and groom hired a caller to lead the guests in Contra Dancing, which was quite enjoyable to watch (I was, as usual, tethered to the sound board, but confusingly, not running the sound for the reception). It was very charming.
I've lined up another gig, which bookends the one that starts tomorrow. God only knows the next time I'll have a day off!
So, if you want to know what I'm up to these days, email me. I'll tell you.


I hurt my shoulder last night. Sleeping. I never knew it was such a dangerous activity. Well, my pal Lewis was paralyzed for ages after allegedly injuring himself in his sleep. The doctors never really determined the cause of it, but gave him that old "you should make your bed every day" lecture. So, I slept on the stack o' futons at the studio last night and awoke in the wee hours with unbelievable pain radiating from my shoulder. And, since the futons are as supportive as a sack, there wasn't a position in which I could lie where there was no weight on my shoulder. This was somewhat ameliorated by a trip to the Swedish Bakery on North Avenue and screening a wedding video in the basement. It's odd watching the videos of highly emotional events of strangers, but easier to concentrate on the editing.
I got a call from Peter at Peace Fleece this afternoon. I'd decided to wait to talk to them before making version 3.0 of the sleeve. When I checked the pattern last night for the number of increases in the sleeve, I realized that I'd missed half of them. I had misread the pattern, with disastrous results. Since Peter isn't a knitter, which surprised me (he's the founder of the company, and from all my reading and interactions with the company, pretty cool), he vowed to have one of the knitters on staff give me a call regarding my question. He appreciated my desire to start soon, as it is cooling off in Chicago.
Despite my sore shoulder, I'm driving to Iowa City to visit some friends. It's been some time since I've been to the Hawkeye state, even though I keep getting mailings from the university alumni association extolling its virtues. They keep trying to lure alumni back to the state, to reverse its depopulation trend, but I am resistant to their pitch. How many Chicagoans will fall for the convenience of being "just three and a half hours away from cultural gems like the Art Institute of Chicago"? I'm forty minutes away from it now! We'll not even go into the fact that there are virtually no jobs for people in my profession in Iowa. I'm just going to see my pals.


I'm tired of hearing about the California gubernatorial recall election! I can only imagine how hard it must be for actual Californians...But they need to be informed on the subject, and I don't, really. So, they've decided that they're tired of the way that their state is being run. I decided that about this country a good 15 months ago. My decision didn't bring everyone from former child stars to former porn stars out of the woodwork, though. And, of course, some candidates seem to be getting much more attention than others. What is it exactly about being a former Mr. Universe that qualifies Ahnold to run California? Or is it because he's married to a Kennedy cousin? I am amazed at how people fawn over him, making comparisons to Ronald Reagan (like that's a good thing). I even read someone's statement that Ahnold could follow his path to the White House. That person must have failed civics class; our constitution requires the president to be a "natural born citizen". That is, foreigners need not apply. Voters should also be concerned that he has no policy concepts and told Oui magazine in the 70s that he'd participated in gang bangs.

Congress is close to passing a bill banning so-called partial birth abortions. This will be the first time that congress has banned a safe medical procedure. We've been on a slippery slope ever since the current administration moved to confer "personhood" on fetuses. They don't care about the women carrying those "persons", though. Fucking Republicans. The US government has cut foreign aid that funded women's organizations around the globe, that ran clinics that educated women in family planning and provided basic medical services. Why should women be trusted to make decisions about their own bodies? That's just aberrant thinking!

Other aberrant thought...Like something straight out of Orwell's 1984, Bush claims that the government never said that there was a connection between Saddam Hussein and September 11th. Huh? And any inference or assumption to that effect was misguided or incorrect. So, was that a mass hallucination?

Somewhere in the world it's still 1986. Lewis and I went to check out the new H&M on Michigan Avenue, and judging by several of their design lines, that place is Sweden. Neon colors and pseudo-silk Members Only jackets? Supply side economics and Republicans in the White House? Must be an 80s redux! H&M was seriously crowded, so Lewis and I quickly lost each other in the fray. The snippy clerks claimed that they couldn't page people "because the speakers aren't hooked up". They said that with a straight face while loud dance music, coming from visible speakers, pumped in the background. Next time, Lewis and I will have to take walkie talkies.

I started on my Peace Fleece kit yesterday. I was busily knitting away on a sleeve when I tried it around my forearm. Oddly tight, even though the underarm measurement for that size is large enough. The fabric created, which has just a hint of boucle texture, is pretty thick. Good for a Russian winter, my mom observed. Good for a Chicago winter, I hope, since it's starting to get cold here. The next size up is nine inches larger than my measurements at the underarm. Which is quite roomy. Maybe I'll email the people at Peace Fleece for sizing advice, then adjust the pattern as needed.


Rainy days and long pants don't mix. And since I'm 5'-4", all my pants are long.
I went out in search of a new pair of pants, to no avail. I though that I had a promising pair until I headed to the dressing room. I can't really describe the funky way that they pulled, but I blame it entirely on the pants, not my body. Though my body seems made for casual clothing. Sigh...
Why this interest in new clothes when I'm broke? Well, I need interview clothes. I thought I'd get some unemployment rolling in (ha!) and then head down to the new H&M on Michigan Ave. (also known as that storefront that cab drove into about a month ago. Whoops), but then I got an interview for tomorrow. An interview is great, but what am I going to wear? My last workplace was so casual that we could drink on the job, so I don't have a lot of fabulous career-minded ensembles....And I'm a thousand miles away from my lucky Gap outlet.
I tried on a corduroy blazer at Target, designed by Isaac Mizrahi. It was awful. It was oddly boxy, giving one the impression that I was playing dress up in one of mom's suits. That's not the image I want to put forth, so if I land this gig, I'll sink some of the money into a real suit. Or at least a career-minded trip to H&M.
It's funny, when I told my mother about the interview, she asked if I had a good skirt that "we" could put a blazer with. Gave me the impression that she hasn't been paying attention the past 24 years.


I Am A Knitting Machine
Since I've returned from summer stock, I've finished two sweaters and started a third. I've finished a pair of hand-dyed merino socks for my grandmother and started a pair of Bert and Ernie style self-striping ones for myself. I'm already on the second sock! And there was a silk scarf and knitting lessons for a friend...
And, as usual, I have a few projects planned:
*Fix the straps on my cotton tank so that it doesn't gap in the armholes.

*Finish the cotton and viscose tape boatneck shell currently on the needles. It's self-striping, too, but the yarn is a bit odd. The matte areas are all cotton and the shiny areas viscose, which makes for very different textures. The viscose tape is very slippery to work with.

*A pair of socks for my grandfather for either his anniversary or Christmas. They're both in December. It's a joy making socks for him because he really appreciates them. He takes better care of them than I do! I'd pulled a hank of Cherry Tree Hill Supersock in Green Mountain Madness, but he told me that he doesn't like the color green. What an odd color to dislike, but I suspect that it dates back to his days in the army. So my mother and I headed up to Arcadia Knitting, where I picked up a more suitable handpainted Wildefoote yarn in Rhapsody. There's some green, but it's balanced by the other jewel tones.

*My long-awaited Peace Fleece Everyday Cardigan kit. I didn't have to wait long for it--SAW is very quick--but I've been waiting for the weather to cool off before starting on it. I've admired it for a long time in their catalog and even bought the sample color. Maybe after I make it, I'd like it in another color. I'm pretty fond of the tweedy moss green that I bought.

*Many, many pairs of socks. Lewis pointed out to me that one day all of my socks will be handknit. Ironically, I rarely wear socks unless it's really cold or I want to wear my shit kickers.

*I'm looking for a project for the amazingly luxe charcoal grey Peruvian alpaca that I purchased in SoHo last year. I've got about 1300 yards and it knits at six stitches to the inch. I've been waiting for the perfect project.

In Other News:

I finally got paid for the overhire work that I did in July. The check really was in the mail.

Leni Riefenstahl died this week at age 101. She was a remarkable lady. I wonder when it will stop being so damn controversial to admire her work. As she put it, the Nazi era was a mere 7% of her life (possibly less as she got older). Here's a link to the obit the NY Times ran: Riefenstahl link

I got a letter saying that I've been denied unemployment benefits. I went to the IDES office for clarification, as the reasons given seemed wildly inaccurate. The agent I saw didn't listen to anything I said, couldn't get my SS# right after being told three times, and didn't even stamp my card. I cried. I hate crying in public. So, I'm going to go back tomorrow and try to speak to another agent to get this all straightened out. As I said jokingly to my grandmother, for all the work this has been, it would be easier to just get a job. I'm sure that's their intent.

I went in for my annual and was told that I have to cut back on my sugar intake. I love sugar. I'm upset about this. It'll be another difficult behavior modification for me. I used tootsie pops to wean myself off of cigarettes and now I have to quit the pops too. I asked my diabetic grandmother for advice and she advised all things in moderation.

I turned down a stage management job tonight. The producer was offering $50 for a month's worth of work. With remarkable restraint, I told him that it was financially impossible. Just to cover transportation, I'd need $250!

Someone posted a factory management job on Backstagejobs.com. They were apparently drawn in by the term production management, but didn't read anything before making their post. Are there a lot of steel workers looking for theatre gigs? Or stagehands looking for second shift work?

One of my neighbors has a wind chime that plays the same notes as the ringtone on my phone. Sometimes, it will play them in the right order and make me paranoid about missing a call all night. Some people like wind chimes, but to me they're just noise pollution. Like the other neighbor who uses his leaf blower right outside my living room window everyday. Always when I'm watching something engrossing on TV, too. And if the noise weren't bad enough, there's also the crazy gas fumes wafting in the window. I often have to retreat to the other end of the house, which isn't cool. I wonder what he'll do when there are actually leaves on the ground!

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