I'm transfixed. But transfixed enough to solder? Hmmmm.........


I Really Want to See This

Maybe I'll brush up on my listening skills in French first.


Please have the Olympics in Chicago. We have everything here! Crime, corruption, pee on the trains, and shitty fucking weather! The IOC committee is visiting our fair city this week, and I doubt that they're going to pick us. Big sigh of relief. Political scandals have dominated the news for the past several days and the weather has taken a dramatic, yet typical, turn for the worse. It was pleasant this morning, but that rapidly turned into rain, hail, sleet, and snow. And there was nary a snow plow in sight as I cautiously drove home. If you're not from here, that might seem unremarkable, but it's shocking to see snow stick on the expressways here. Usually the plows are out before the flakes fly. I'm sure the city had other things on its mind.... Makes Rio look better and better.

I've been AWOL lately, due to an intense schedule. Rehearsals starting for an upcoming show, as well as two two-show days in a row on the current one. Not matinee and evening performances, but morning and evening performances, with a good six hour gap in between calls. I've worked a similar schedule before, but I don't remember how I pulled that off. I had to get up while it was still dark out, which is really rough for me. Then, there were those six hours to kill in between shows. One of my friends let me crash at her apartment, where I chilled for a while. I stumbled upon a Sigur Ros concert on Current tv (a very awesome channel and website. I highly recommend it.), which lulled me to sleep. I needed that nap, but getting out of the theatre did wonders for my morale as well.

On the knitting front, I am working on a couple of lace projects. This might not seem ideal for travel/ mid-show knitting, but they are very portable. My lace-reading skills have also improved. The first project is a pair of lace socks, Vog-On from Knitty. The lace pattern is an easily memorized seven stitch, four row repeat. I can even knit it while drinking, with a minimum of mistakes!

The second project is Ysolda Teague's Ishbel shawl (pictured right). I am knitting the smaller size, out of Socks That Rock lightweight. The yarn is a pale blue, with shades of silver, which should make the lace look more delicate. This pattern seems to have really taken off on Ravelry, leading me to believe that it will go viral like the Clapotis did a few years ago. Ysolda is an awesome designer, so it couldn't have happened to a nicer person. That's her modeling her design. If you're a knitter and you're not familiar with her work, I strongly suggest checking out her website. Beautiful, well-well written designs with excellent pattern support. You may recall that I knit three versions of her Liesl sweater for Christmas last year. There are very few patterns I'd knit twice, let alone three times.


I just tore out half of a sweater. The temptation to just keep going was strong. The sweater was half-done. One big push (like a Grey's marathon) would have gotten me through it. When I stopped to look at it, and really thought, I realized that I would never be happy with it. I could finish it, but probably wouldn't wear it. So much work to be wasted, but I am confident that I made the right decision. I should have pulled it out sooner, instead of steadily knitting on with a nagging doubt about the design. All that remains is the collar, and that may marinate for a while until I figure out how I want to proceed. What about the design made me rip out so many hours of work? Details. Proportion. Art school adjectives. Without ever trying it on, I knew that it wouldn't be flattering.
Fortunately, I have a few other projects to occupy my time. A cotton sweater, for example. I keep forgetting that I hate cotton. It has no memory. The fabric gets heavy, dragging the garment out of shape. It's pretty punishing on the environment, and my hands as I knit it. But somehow, I keep knitting with cotton. This is even the second time that I've knit this pattern, even though the first one got stretched out and pilly. Hope springs eternal. This time, I mean business. Cotton on bamboo needles? No. I went down a size and switched to Addis instead. Firm gauge, solid but not stiff fabric, and cotton ball soft hand. It might need a couple of visits from the pill shaver after I've worn it a few times, but I'm okay with that. That said, I doubt I'll buy a worsted-weight cotton yarn again.

I'm reading a lot of non-fiction these days. Not a conscious choice, but what followed me home from the library. Last week, I read a book about Roald Dahl's intelligence work during World War II. While I learned more about British Intelligence, it wasn't as dashing as I thought it would be. Dahl seems to have cut quite a swath through Washington society, but he was hardly James Bond.
Currently, I am reading a biography of Edward VII of England. It's disappointingly discreet. Was I looking for something salacious, like a historic tabloid? No, but a little more bon vivant, some of that famed Edwardian naughtiness. I am determined to read the entire book, even though I am quite tempted to start Antonia Fraser's The Wives of Henry VIII. Her biography of Marie Antoinette was excellent, and I doubt it will be a dull read. I need something engaging to read as I lie in bed, ride the train, or just want to give my hands a rest.

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