Friday, June 30, 2006

opiate mon amour?

Well that was certainly a justice dealing ending. And the moral of the story is: don't be wishy washy. If you're gonna be a depraved, liscentious, ravisher of innocents sign the contractual parchment adn stop wasting my time. Lucifer will think so much more of you. If not then you better durn well believe in the ultimate's ability to pardon ANYTHING or you are so gone.

Auto de Fe comin' at ya in tech-ni-co-lur.

(SRC) The Monk, Matthew Lewis (442 pp)If you have never read a gothic novel (and gothic romance is so not the gothic I'm referring to) then this would be a good start. It's got everything gothic. Cliche? Pshaw. Only 'cause everything that came later copied what this novel has. Bad poetry! Sulpherous sepulchers! Malicious dominas! Lascivious abbots! Bleeding specters! Banditti threatening honest Marquis' and Duchesses! Purity vanquished and mob frenzies of retribution! Plot twists that make no sense except they are needed to move the story along. (Golly that last sounds a bit like the Sargasso Manuscript which is such a cool book) Really bad spelling and mixed tense usage (Dude you are an Englishman don't you dare harp on Americans when you use past to mean passed and past). No rats though. Only slimy reptiles (oxymoronic what?) and ringworms.

As I was reading this I was mentally reaching for a Dumas. Yes! Now I must read the Man in the Iron Mask oh wait that's not on my list ..... but lessee ..... oh look Sir Walter is :) ooooo and so is Lefanu: Midlothian, Uncle Silas, Midlothian, Uncle Silas......

Neko was sold out. I pretty much thought she would be. Thus I ended up in the DDE across the street and purchased botht a Neko Case solo work and a New Pornographers. According to the DDE employee (I am so onomotopoeic :) NP is much poppier than Neko's other work.

I also ordered some yarn from fearless flyer and bbunnies on etsy. One of those will be for my KSKS swappee. Speaking of I'm having trouble contacting my swapper (gremlins of the net I presume). I get her messages but she's not getting mine. So KP3 my address is correct but the final # is #404. I don't think you have that part.

I am now off to investigate the make up of a couple of Tarot decks I saw today. One looks Arty (Gustav Klimt) the other may be more symbolic. We shall see. Oh and I found the most wonderful set of chiming bells. All soft and tinkly *sigh* I love bells :) ***CV

Thursday, June 29, 2006

kooreon or koorayon

While sipping my green tea latte in a local cafe today I had the oddest experience of entering a Woody Allen movie. At a table next to mine was an older man earnestly explaining (for a good 45 minutes) to a younger man the " inherant philosophy of .... which includes german expressionism .... political ..... but the romantic aspects ..... so you see he will never .... because in England or the greater European community ....... according to ... that is why ......."

(Somebody pass me a beret ;)

Meanwhile, I was learning that if your Duenna insists on creeping around and listening in to your private assignation as you plot to disguise yourself as the Castle's resident ghost (otherwise know as the Bleeding Nun) then she has the temerity to say you can't carry through with your plot; and golly you already got the cool veil and habit from a local convent and it wasn't easy let me tell you; it is good if your cavalier has no qualms with bundling the nosy lady up like a sack of potatoes, carrying her off to his acommodations, stashing her in a closet and liberally supplying her daily with bottles of cherry brandy.

(Why yes I am halfway through with The Monk (page 193). I am now at the chapter where Ambrosius -the Monk, is beginning to feel guilt/remorse for seducing his novice, 'cause like you know it will make him less saintly. Um Ambrosius that is not Rosario aka .... oh! but that would spoil it).
Yesterday I picked up my first skeins of Kureyon for the KSKS. Then I found out my swappee doesn't really like pink and then I found out Kureyon (the Noro) doesn't really make red shades (it does in the silk blend). So today I went and bought another three skeins in number 157. It's the closest I could find. I'll practice with the other six -yes 6. Maybe early winter gifts?

I also picked up a copy of Not Just Socks (more) and a Rowan pattern book that was on sale. It's the Plaid Collection which is filled with all these beautiful cable sweaters. Not cluttered cables but simple open spacious ones. It is so funny how the models in it (except the child) are all arching a brow quizzically as they gaze into the camera.
Neko Case is performing tomorrow and I don't know if I should go or not. ******CV

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

the Lady of Cobwebs

(SRC) Poison, Chris Wooding (273 pp) Poison is the name of the heroine of this work and she chose her own name. Most of the other female residents of the Black Marsh would have chosen Azalea, Marigold, Buttercup, but not Poison. Poison is what she sees herself as and nothing will change her mind. To tell you anymore would actually spoil the ending so I can't compare it to other works which are fairly obvious as you read the story but I will say that I really like the Spider Queen. She's so delightfully Mad and Gollum like :)

I started The Monk by Mathew Lewis today and I'm on page 93. So far we have met a squinty red headed femme fatale, two debonair cavaliers, a pride filled "virtuous" monk who as of the last section is having a night of abandon with one of his novices (oh like I couldn't see that coming - it is a gothic novel after all) after condemning a Sister to the pennances of St. Clare for daring to be with child which happened, I might add, BEFORE she entered the convent; and by the way dude you were a foundling left at the abbey so no one knows who your parents are; and a rhyming gypsy who drops her "h"s like Eliza Doolittle (I can tell because she puts an "an" before every word that starts with an "h").
I recieved a DPN case today, that I swapped some STR for, from Trek :) It's pink paisely on the outside and OJ on the interior pockets. At last my DPNs have a home :)

I also purchased some Noro Kureyon (colors 102 and 148) to make the Booga Bag for my KSKS partner. Has anyone done this pattern? If so how small is the final product? I'm willing to get more Noro if I should to make the bag a decent size for a sock project.

Had another dizzyness attack - but much milder - in practice today. So I spoke to the teacher afterwards and I'll try her feedback tomorrow.
Oh and I found the Panda Bar made by Endangered Species. It's dark and white chocolate combined ..... *****CV

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

che sera sera

The Japanese garden in Portland is truly a peaceful place. I never realized though exactly how close it was to me until today. Admittedly I found that out by returning downhill from it which means heading upstream (well it does start out on Salmon street) could prove a mite more challenging.

It is a long and winding road that leads to my door but fortunately I wasn't left standing at the bus stop (the attendent at the garden - who was reading Thus Spoke Zaruthustra, wasn't sure where it stopped) because I figured downtown must be "down", directionally speaking.

Cooler by 10 degrees today which helped ALOT in my decison to walk and explore. Along the way I passed by a resevoir. I think this is the one the MAX travels underneath on its way to the zoo. I also walked past alot of houses which reminded me of the more upscale houses in San Francisco. Particularly the ones near the nude beach (Do Not Ask How I know, I just do. And I might say that while it may be sheltered a more claustrophobic sand spot I have yet to see.)

(SRC) I finished the Wild Ass's Skin (285 pp)and save for a rather gratuitously cheesey "I love you do you love me?" "How could I not love you you are so lovable" half chapter (so let's say 50 pages) it was a definite Balzac on a philosophical and let's throw a few digs at: the current King, critics of my work, and, oh why not, french societee in general, tale. It was not the fairy tale I was expecting from the back description. Several references to other Balzac works were included as well. Having never read Proust I cannot say whether this internal referral, multigenerations, episodic (oh please, soap operatic) writing is similar to Proust or not, but something tells me it is.

Let's hear it for creative punctuation! Dickens challenge here I come :)

I have begun Poison by Chris Wooding (he who authored the Haunting of Alaizabel Kray) and may be finished tonight.
Yesterday afternoon I picked up three new CDs

Leonard Cohen, Songs From a Room
Iggy Pop, the Anthology
(my goodness what an Eddie Grant looking cover)
The Wild Swans, Incandescent

and two books:

PG Wodehouse, Leave it to Psmith
Banana Yoshimoto, Asleep
I also discovered that if you push one too many of the buttons on your new disc player one too many times, even if it looks like nothing is happening something is, your CD player will go on strike.
I am so glad I kept the manual. *****CV

Monday, June 26, 2006

gracias mi amigo secreto

Y'dream of blondes and y'dream of beer
and life gets terribly stale
It's dead in the morgue, but it's deader in here
There's no night out in the jail
There's no night out in the jail
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds

Appropo nothing in particular just a lyric from B-Sides. But then a blackthorn would be reeaallly nice about now and maybe a Raphael to fetch it for me.

I said it once and I'll say it again: it is HOT! But apparently the studio has air conditioning which was nice. It's the kind of heat where, after walking about 25 blocks, you get on a train and after sitting for 7 minutes (no ac on the train BTW) you feel as if you walked though a fountain. Yes: you are the fountain.

Then I walked to the post office and ... Ellie ... y'know that best SP nominating thing? Consider yourself in ;)

After being very good by waiting until I got home I carefully opened the box (which a very nice postal worker spent ten minutes searching for) and was immediately transported to Haight Street (patchoul-i!) via cones of incense which are now filling my house with their scent :) And what else? Orange tissue pretty pretty! Orange is such a cheerful colour. Then a square candle which I carefully unwrapped to admire its pale yellow shimmer. I considered my holders ... maybe the red cylinder is wide enough ... then I found that thoughtful Ellie had packed a square holder for it. Thank you!

I do wish I had a camera to show the beautiful skeins (2) of Claudia handpainted yarn. I have read about this yarn but not seen any until today. The colour reminds me of ruby slippers by Blue Moon Fibers but deeper and more muted. The texture seems similar to Koigu.

But that is not all. Oh No. See Ellie and I ... ummm think books are ... okay. Y'know if there's nothing better to do one could, I suppose ... I dunno ... read; if one had to. She sent me a book which she had no way (I think) of knowing is the one Diana Wynne Jones I always pick up and consider buying: Deep Secret.

So as I slowly but surely melt in this slow oven of an apartment I would like to say. Ellie thank you. This was worth walking all 36 blocks in 95+(F) weather to receive. :)

Sunday, June 25, 2006

wingnut ears

It is so very hot today. At least into the 90s(F) and with the natural humidity one feels as if one is going to melt any moment. After practice I walked to Powell's and spent a good hour in the coolness that is towering bookshelves and concrete floors then I caught a train to a cafe and read there for about an hour before coming home to collapse and finish Lupin III vol. I

So why do I say Lupin is very '60s? Could it be the Sean Connery 007 facial features? Could it be the oh so mod carpeting? Could it be the "Hi. My name is Shauna and I'll be your flight attendent" minidress perkiness of the girls? Maaaaaybe ;)

I see another two volumes in my future (especially since Hikaru no Go #7 which was slated for June release is STILL in the warehouse)

I decided to pick up the Ass's Skin again and Raphael (the hero) is recounting his backgoround, at a very drunk and rowdy party, to his friend Emile. This edition has footnotes at the bottom of almost every page. Normally I like this feature as it can help me better understand what a book is about. However this particular story, or perhaps it is this particular translator, has so many references I almost wish it was left to my imagination. Particularly as many of the references are to Gargantua and Pantagruel which is on my reading list but I haven't read yet.

So apparently I not only booked an extra day at the end of my trip I did one at the beginning too. Okay life must have something in mind for me to spend so much time in VA*****CV

Saturday, June 24, 2006

cool thing

What a beautiful day today! I went in to school after first getting some large crickets for the class gecko. (Interesting point is that it takes 2.5 medium crickets to equal the size of one large cricket. Needless to say, but I will anyay, ms. gecko was mighty happy wth her gourmet three jiminy breakfast.

Then I had a green tea latte before practice. This was a mistake (even though it was an hour and half before practice). Apparently caffeine and a practice of standing forward/twisting/balances do not go well together, and I will not be repeating it. I have never fainted in my life but I almost did in class today. On a more cheerful note it seems hanumanasana is still available to me (yay! it's my favorite pose :)

(SRC) The Book of Atrix Wolfe, Patricia McKillip (247pp) I started this book this morning and finished it late this afternoon. Regular readers will recall that I was fairly adamant about not liking Ms. McKillip's work and it was based upon this very book. It would seem that in the interim of then and now I have come to appreciate her writing. It happens. This story combines the themes of the wild hunt and Deerskin as well as other seasonal myths. And the dark haired glasses wearing hero is pre HP (so there!)

I have my ticket for Social Distortion and I'm still considering Sonic Youth. There are some songs I like but the last time I saw them live it really hit home how feedback and noise oriented they are.****CV

Friday, June 23, 2006

"it's nice to be nice"

I just received the sweetest thank you package. Part of it was this cute, cute amirigumi book. Oh true it's in its native language but I've worked with similar books before and the photos are just darling :)

(SRC) Love and Longing in Bombay, Vikram Chandra (262pp) A collection of five stories, each respectively titled: dharma, shakti, kama, artha, shanti. The unifying thread is a storyteller and his unknowing disciple, who may or may not be the author of this book. I am glad I continued to read past dharma. I can thank Soeseki for this as it was his last tale (the Heredity of Taste) which allowed me to complete dharma. Somewhat appropriate I suppose considering the title of Chandra's first tale. All of the stories, with the exception of shanti, are set in modern India. There is much refernce to the combination of past and present colloquiallisms as well as technologies. As I reflect upon it one of the subthemes was how the exterior of the world may change as well as our perceptions of these surface appearances, but the interior realm varies little. This was not as an engrossing read for me as another of his works, Red Earth and Pouring Rain (which I loved) but it was a worthwhile read.

No bridge crossings today. I decided to have a real summer vacation day just reading and sitting in a cafe.

I did send off a package to my SP and I listened to B-Sides vol III. The first song of which is Little Boat where the narrator soliloquizes about a woman chatting to him at aparty. This chatter seems to be of the conversion kind. I do like the response lines: "I've already been born once and I don't need to be again" as well as "I am the resurrection and you're standing on my foot"

Have I mentioned that Nick has a rather dark sense of humour in his lyrics?

Well I'm off to see how much hiragana and katakana I remember. ****CV

Thursday, June 22, 2006

and a bumblebee

Portland has 14 bridges, not counting the trestle ones which are for trains only. Three of the 14 are not pedestrian accessible and, as I review my handy dandy Portland Bridge book, it looks like three are just out of reach for me to cross without making an event of it. *yawn* I am Eyore: See me yawn :) So this leaves me a grand total of eight to walk this summer. Today I crossed number three: the Hawthorne Bridge. It's the prettiest so far; once you get on it. Until then its lots and lots of concrete motorway stuff *cough*hack*cough*

While crossing and dodging bicyclists I listened to Nick's charming version of Bettie Coltrane and Froggie Goes A'Courting. Bettie is the charming tale of a woman who married five different men and they all hunt her down but she emerges victorious ('cause she knows how to use a pistol) and Froggie the poem will never be quite the same again for me.
(SRC) Thebes at War, Naguib Mahfouz (242pp) A romantic, in the true sense of the word (NOT the Harlequin presents sense *ick*ick*ick*) telling of Egypt's rising up against Hyksos rule. There were brief, very brief moments, when I could see the Sheik in this story. But those moments were very few and due more to my own associations with certain situations then anything Mahfouz put in. This story was written in 1939, a time when Egypt was not ruled by its people. A satisfying read. My only question is why so many of the cities have Greek prefixes in their names. As far as I know Ahmenhotep (who is born at the end of the story) was before Greek "sharing" in Egypt occurred.
I realised after I had booked my flights and approved the non refundable tickets and said please charge my card that I have extended my stay by one day. While I could sit in an airport for 18+hours, I'd really rather not. Now I must find exciting things to do in Norfolk while carrying luggage. ****CV

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Memphis on the Nile

I have left the Valley of the Moomins and have now discovered Thebes at War, Naguib Mafhouz.

(SRC) Moominvalley in November, Tove Jansson (175pp) Unlike other moomintroll books I have read (and I think I have read all of them) this one has no Moomins in it. No, not one. Oh there is mention of the moomins but they are not present. This is a much darker story then even Moominpapa's Memoirs. Toft is the central character but Fillyjonk, the Hemulan, Mymble, Snufkin and Grampa Grumbles all have important parts as does the ancestor. It all ends well enough but there were some moments when I wondered how comfortable I would be reading this to a small child.
Anyone know a cheap flight to Virginia? ***CV

update: got my flight (fingers crossed with internet booking) Anyone know an inexpensive means of getting from Norfolk to Williamsburg?

Tuesday, June 20, 2006


Experience is a wonderful thing! Last year, when I donated dyeing, spinning and knitting for the annual auction I never got to the knitting. We just ran out of time. Three hours is not enough if you really want the participants to experience the work. So this year we only did dyeing and knitting. We kind of got to both but I think next year it will be dyeing only, with a bonus of knitting as an extra donation. I haven't figured out yet how to teach somone joining in the round and at the same time answer questions or assist people in three differnt stages of the dyeing process.

Again I used what ever was leftover from the color selection to dye my skein. Last year I ended up with a really pretty orange. Think a mellow pumpkin on the vine colour. I think I used three red and a yellow but I can't recall. This year I used four packets of strawberry and two of cherry. It's a very pretty pink toned red, more watermelon then anything else. No one used the orange or the yellow (except for one packet of the latter).

It's so fun to see who is into the "science", who is into the technique, and who just loves playing with water. I did have to be firm with two water babies :)
I am going to be on the East Coast at the end of July. I think a few skirts and tank tops yes? Booking a flight *yowza* Let us move to less hectic and far more charming subjects shall we?
(SRC) Strandloper, Alan Garner (2oopp) Based on a real person (William Buckley) though not sticking to historic facts per se unless they happen to be recorded. Strandloper is a very well told tale that starts out in England and moves to Australia and then comes full circle. What I especially enjoyed was that throughout the story the main character stayed true to himself and to what others knew him to be. Are there songlines in Northern Europe? Aren't there songlines everywhere?
I listened to most of the first CD in B-Sides and Rarities: very blues and dark country. One of the tracks is a narrative piece in which you can tell that Nick is australian. All the time that I was reading Strandloper I was reminded of And the Ass saw the Angel and this narrative piece was eerie. I did enjoy Black Bettie which is a cover of a Lead Belly song. Another track was called Scum and I could swear that it is Nick Cave parodying Bauhuas (a/p Bad Seed he didn't think much of Murphy and co.)
Now I am in the land of Tove Jansson. She of the Moomins, Mymbles, Fillyjonks and friends. Where can Moomintroll's family have disappeared to?******CV

Monday, June 19, 2006

crystal hive

I finished the Giver and Elementals last night.

(SRC) the Giver, Lois Lowry (177pp) this is the first in an ongoing series involving a society which has become very structured and rule oriented. If you can imagine 1984 without the militirism and with kindness being the basic rule you have a general idea. The main narrator in this story is a 12 year old male named Joshua. I noticed a tendency to use biblical sounding names: Joshua, Gabriel, Jonah. Joshua is waiting to be given his assignment, or work, as an adult and that is where the plot develops. The ending was framed in such a way that it could either be a tear fest or not. I am curious now how Gossamer (the fourth in this series) will turn out having already read the middle two.

(SRC) Elementals, AS Byatt (230pp) this is a collection of short stories which have as as their premise some element, the most obvious being earth, air, fire or water. The water element is told via a Lamia in a swimmming pool and an artist obssessed with color. Cold is a fairy tale that gives new interpretaion to the title Snow White and incorporates elements of East of the Sun and West of the Moon. One of the final tales reminds me of some of Leonora Carrington's works. Especially her magical mexican kitchens.

After finishing Elementals I was still awake so I started to read the manga I had purchased on Saturday, Lupin the III by Monkeypunch. It is sooo 60's. I wasn't expecting that at all.

This morning, instead of returning to Balzac or Stendhal, I chose Strandloper by Alan Garner. Greenman meets the aborigines and speech ala Euchrid Crow. Two new epithets: "His garrett's unfurnished" and "I wouldn't trust his arse with a fart."
After practice today I crossed the Burnside bridge (c.1924). I believe all the bridges along the Willammette are constructed so that they can seperate for tall ships yet none of them seem in a state to do that. There are all these concrete barriers in place and construction work happening.
Tomorrow is dyeing and knitting in the round. I found these japanese plastic circular needles today. I'm planning on introducing worsted yarn on them before going to sockweight on DPNs. And when I went to purchase koolaid for the dyeing part the shop only had nine varieties - one of which was invisible rasberry. Last year thay had about 15 different kinds. ***CV

Sunday, June 18, 2006

ache ache ache

In answer to Carrie's question: yes I did make it across the bridge.

I'm listening to a CD I picked up last night and it's convincing me that I need to go see Social Distortion (tho' need is not precisely the right word, more like think it would be really really fun to go -and, hey I know where the venue is!)

But anyway, continuing the adventures after my exciting escherian (thanks Chris) bridge walk, I went out that night to ... can you guess?? Powell's :) And I was bad (hangs head) I haven't met my quota but I still got new reads. One was a manga, one was a Patrick Stewart revisit, and the last was a trip down memory lane. I will finish my quota first. Pinky swear ;)

I also got to meet my SP8 :) No, I don't know her real name (I think) and I don't know her site or anything like that, but, now I do know that she is as entertaining in person as she is in corrrespondance.

After Powell's I went to the DDE and found a CD by my all time favorite group: Particles and Waves, Cranes, and I also found B-Sides and Rarities, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds as well as the aforementioned Social Distortion, Sex Love and Rock 'n Roll.

I finished Bad Seed this afternoon (305pp). What a life he's led so far. Considering it ended with Nick married in London, with a son (who would be about 15 now)I'm curious why he is now married/seeing another woman. But you know, that's simple snoopiness on my part. I am almost finished with the Giver (177pp)and will be done tonight but I'll save my review for tomorrow. I should also be finished with AS Byatt's Elementals (230pp) too.

Must meet quota, must meet quota.

Portland only has 11 of it's 14 highway bridges listed as Pedestrian friendly. So it's 1 down 10 to go. ***CV

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Hiding all away

I had a very pleasant day today. It didn't start out so great (waking upat 6:50 worrying about school situations) but I went back to sleep and when I woke up again it was time to go to the new studio.

I went and had my first class in nine months. Ohboy. But that's a good thing. I found out I can still do sirsasana and Pichmayurasana against the wall (I'll save handstands for later) and I still detest parsvakonasana. It was a basic class which is what I'll stick with for about two weeks before doing anything else. Then there was a sanskrit class which was nice and mellow.

After the class I walked home via the Morrison Bridge. Portland has 14 main bridges and I've made it one of my summer things to do to cross all 14 on foot. The Morrison bridge was interesting because it looks straightforward: get on on one side and walk across to the other. No. Too easy.

Get on walk and walk and realise that the pedestrian walkway follows the turn off to Seattle. Uh I don't wanna go to Seattle. Oh look there's a stair case. Guess I'll descend and figure another way to get to west Portland. Oh wait now the staircase ascends and I haven't gotten to the street. In fact I can't get to the street. (Meanwhile Nick Cave is singing "I was hiding dear, I was hiding all away")

It would seem that this bridge is full of freeway intersections which means no crosswalks. But there are these staircases that descend then reascend to the bridge. ("I was not sitting with the gargoyles, I was not swinging from the bell, I was hiding dear...") Three of them.They seem to be inhabited at night by two footed critters. ("I had to get out of there babe, hiding all away....")

One down thirteen to go. I can't wait to see what these other crossings will be like. Morrison is very concrete modern. Each of the others is constructed differently.

I'll share my other adventures tomorrow :)***CV

Friday, June 16, 2006

burning in ice

I am now at the part where Nick is changing his song/screenplay Swampland into a possible novel called King Euchrid. This will of course eventually become And the Ass Saw an Angel.

In many of the events related in Bad Seed it's hard to tell the truth from the embellished and the downright falsehood. It's so difficult to believe that someone could live this life and not only be alive today but still admired.

And I'm still trying to picture a guitar being played with an electric shaver.
Sonic Youth and Social Distortion are coming in July (seperate venues and dates).
Stephenie Meyer will be in Seattle at the end of the month.
Yarn Harlot will be here in September.
I have a Sanskrit class tomorrow :)
Here is the questionnaire for KSKS:

What are your favorite colors? Reds, oranges, pinks and browns
Are you a new sock knitter? How long have you been knitting socks? I started knitting socks last summer
Do you prefer solid or multicolored yarn? Multicolored is what I tend to purchase but solids are fun too
What fibers do you prefer in sock yarn? Wool blends
Where do you usually knit socks? On the bus, in lines, between here’s and there’s
How do you usually carry/store small projects? I have a small felt bag which came from a bath shop (I returned the items and kept the bag :) )
What are your favorite sock knitting patterns? I have Nancy Bush’s books but have not really attempted a pattern as such. I keep looking at the various ones on Knitty
What are your favorite sock knitting techniques? I’ve only used DPNs and knit from the cuff down
What new techniques would you like to try? Toe up or with two circulars
Do you prefer circulars or dpns for sock knitting? DPNs
What are some of your favorite yarns? Well I tend to purchase Blue Moon, Lorna’s Laces and Opal but I haven’t gone beyond and would like to try something new
What yarn do you totally covet? I am curious about koigu and fleece artist but if I really wanted it? *tsk* I’d get it :)
Any pattern you would love to make if money and time were no object? LOL any pattern period
Favorite kind of needles (brand, materials, straights or circs, etc)? I use bamboo or wood and 5.5 inch DPNs are comfortable
If you were a specific kind of yarn, which brand and kind of yarn would you be? Oh I took that quiz and it said I was mohair. But I wonder about that. I really like the wool cashmere blend I’ve been using for Rosalind. It’s an amazing texture.
Do you have a favorite candy or mail-able snack? Not that I can think of. I do like green tea (but not mints)
What’s your favorite animal? Oh dear: living
Do you have pets? What are their species/names/ages? I do have a cat who is almost two years old and her name is Chai
If you were a color what color would you be? A friend once told me she thinks of the color amber, which could be yellow, orange, red, green or white (but green?? I’d rather not)
Describe your favorite shirt (yours or someone else’s) Long bell sleeves, v neck, soft and somewhat fitted. I hae been told my clothing taste verges on the gypsy
What is your most inspiring image, flower, or object in nature? The New Mexican mesa or the gullies in Death Valley
Tell me the best quote you’ve ever heard or read. Oh I find such wonderful one’s in everything I read that I couldn’t limit myself. I’m sorry.
Do you have a wish list? Yes. Powell’s

Thursday, June 15, 2006

fulsome blues

Last night I started The Wild Ass's Skin by Honore Balzac. Lots of exposition at the get go. But I liked it. The main character (who remains nameless until page 50) is wandering the streets of Paris bent on suicide but leisurely enjoying this his final day. Balzac is particular in his descriptions of the characters and habitues of the street. (You know that suicide rescue station sounded absolutely deadly.) So it isn't until page 40 or so that we get into what will be the plot of this fairy tale.

I do love the fact that when the main character is complimented on his ability to read sanskrit the actual writing is arabic. I was mightily confused. Was this mockery, irony, inaccuracy? I still haven't figured it out yet. Oh, and one of the wishes, or curses, so far is that a 100+ year old man fall in love with a ballerina.
I also started, Bad Seed, a biography of Nick Cave. Wow, Just wow. Nick had quite the escapade like lifestyle. I love the brick in a handbag (poofter eh? whap!) and the Fulsome Prison Blues (lol) I know that last has to be a typo. Oh, and Tracy Pew drinking all 12 bottles of Monet that were supposed to be for the Split Enz, only they didn't work Xmas so they didn't deserve it. Which is why Tracy decided to unwrap the packaging, in the process leaving a clear trail to the studio where he and his mates were working, um, sort of.
This bio has pictures and as I was leafing through I had this realization that the men I've been serious with: look like Nick.
I decided to talk with my co worker today. I need closure. I guess I got it.

Me: "I know that we're not friends but have I done something or spoken in a way that was hostile or unfriendly? If so I apologise."

C-W "Since I'll probably never see you again it doesn't matter." Door closes, literally.

But I did pick up my knittin' kali t and cup so that's alright :)

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Read read or Capitalist jackboots

So I calculated my average book read to meet my challenge of 48 books by August 31 (which does not take into account any KTC or the three I tacked on or anything else that catches my fancy (which would bring it to 54 'cause Bad Seed already caught my eye).

The average (of 48) is 1 every 2 days. So I need to read three more this week to be on that track.

It's the nonfiction that's worrying me.
Finished Wuthering Heights this afternoon (337pp). I am impressed it ended so well. I was expecting carnage and much girning, but no. I wonder about being moor bred though. I was led to believe, through Miss Burnett's writing, that heather and moor air was good for you. After meeting the Lintons and Earnshaws? I think I'll not breathe so deep nor so long if I head out that way.
Spoke with Anton at customer service and here's a tip: if you are like me and prefer to speak to a human being rather than an automated system, when you get Ms. Automaton ignore her offerings and say, "customer service." She will come back with a disappointed voice, "Okay but we really don't have any more information. Are you sure you still want to speak to an agent?"

Just say: "yes". So much pleasanter. And Anton really made an effort to resend my delivery, which I appreciated.
Ever work with someone who is open and friendly with everyone except you? A person who, unlike anyone else if you were to ask a question or make a request of them you wouldn't feel as if you had suddenly sprouted a little square moustache, makes you feel as if you had done so and with matching jack boots (which would be cool to own for clubbing)?

How did you deal with it? I need some positive ideas. Think extrovert (other person) v. introvert (me).


Y'know that Ayn Rand/Objectivist Montessori link is really bothering me....

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

'Ware: Rant Ahead

Oh boy in brown? Let me 'splain somethin' to you.

You are in a service industry. Service. This means that you are paid to perform a service.
Said service is not "oh after your tea break and before your martini hour".
Said service is not coordinated to the time of day when the sun don't glare.
Said service is not because you feel in delivery mode or not

Service. As in:

You attempt to deliver three times: ON SEPERATE DAYS leaving a paper notice that you were there not counting on my bloodhound ability to detect your scent.
You ask me (the one whose name is on the f'*** tag) whether to redeliver it OR have it picked up at your oh so INCONVENIENT station.

If I were male and had the correct appendages I'd give you some very clear directions. I'm not. Lucky you.

Bah! where's Heathcliff when he's needed.****CV

On a more humourous note I read today that Objectivists reccommend Montessori schools. Isn't that funny :)

Monday, June 12, 2006

Mary meet Heathcliff

Well I am enjoying Wuthering Heights so far. I posted elsewhere that Cathy and Heathcliff are reminding me of Miss Mary and Colin from, A Secret Garden, grown up horrible. The fact that the servants speak with Yorkshire accents, Jacob could be Ben Weatherstaff gone religious zealot and Hindley could be Colin's father turned drunkard does little to dissuade me.

Heehee! So much fun.
So, looking for a suitable "wuthering" project I picked up some Cascade 220 (3)black, (1)purple, and (1)light purple, yarn. A shawl both Murky and Moor like -though I consider the purple more representaive of imperiousness for that is what I have in mind.
Finally indulged and bought a new Discman today. Apparently it will also play MP3s. I got tired of the old one continually saying SOrrY as I was walking along. Too, the batteries kept popping out at the most inconvenient times. (I really don't need to hear about the butcher and the meat cleaver over and over and over: once is enough per play thankyouvery much.)
The local kingdom is having an exhibition this weekend, or next. I may go as I've been invited.
Powell's has a new short story by Murakami (and no this isn't the book due out later this year). While I want to read it, part of me hesitates at spending $14.95 for a 43pp book***CV

Sunday, June 11, 2006


Books I have read or finished as of June 1, 2006:

The Wrong Side of Paris, Honore Balzac (223pp)
In which the reader realises two things: one, that JK Huysmans was not the only french author to wax philosphic re catholicism and the materialistic nature of human beings. Two, that soap operas have a very distinguished ancestry. (I really like Balzac and I'm looking forwad to reading the Wild Ass's Skin)

(SRC 1) The Eye, Vladmir Nabokov (102pp)
Or how self observation is all fine and well until it becomes denial of existence, unless it gets you a well paying job.

(SRC 2) Goodbye Tsugami, Banana Yoshimoto (186pp)
A girl reflects on growing up at a seaside hotel in Japan. (Boy does that not cover the story :) Sweet story told trough the voice of a girl whose mother was a kept woman and whose closest friend was a sickly Katherine Hepburn meets Betty Davis meets Lauren Bacall personality. (Much better)

(SRC 3) Invitation to a Beheading, Vladmir Nabokov (223pp)
A man, a fortress (alas not of solitude), a fey headsman, a nymphomaniacal wife, a spider and a 12 year old girl. Really I saw this whole thing as a script for the theater of the absurd. I found an example of Nabokov's passion for butterfly collecting particularly interesting, and his librarian was absolutely pre Mervyn Peake.

(SRC 4) Ten Nights of Dream; Hearing Things; The Heredity of Taste, Soeseki Natsume(203pp)
The first story went well with my Nabokov readings: absurd, surreal, dreamlike. The second felt like the Hound of the Baskervilles meets Murakami, and the third story became so bogged down with the narrator's focus on minisculae I had no idea it was a memoir until the end. However, Soeseki does have a way with static imagery that is almost painterly.

(SRC 5)The Messenger, Lois Lowry (167pp)
The third in Ms. Lowry's series which began with the Giver. In this story the narrator is Matty the artful dodger of Gathering Blue. Each narrator has a special gift or talent which serves the greater whole but also possesses a challenge whether it be physical, mental or emotional. All things balance in the world of Lowry. Thank goodness the puppy lives.

Today I started Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte. I must say the narrator was unexpected. He seem like a visitor from Poe land. I am curious to see (having read Jasper Fforde's interpretation of Bronte characters) how Heathcliff and co. manage themselves.

Challenges for the summer include:
Amanda's SRC
Kat with a K's reading challenge
Scout's Sock kit Along
Finding a studio to take up practice again***CV

Saturday, June 10, 2006


I got up early today in order to get down to Pioneer Square for WWKIP. I looked all over for the group that was supposed to meet there but didn't see any conspicuous knitting, so I found a spot for myself and cast on Rosalind. It's an 11 section repeat and I managed four of them. This was 4 hours worth of work. Either illusion knitting takes a lot of time or I have really slowed.

It could also be that using Inox #3 with a 4ply cashmere/wool blend may have had something to do with it as well.
I finished Messenger by Lois Lowry last night, and have a little over 100 pages of Invitation to a Beheading left. I have not read Lolita but there are moments in this particular Nabokov that strike me as Lolita esque. Especially the descriptions of the jailers 12 year old daughter.
Powell's has a copy of Kumiko Sudo's Circles East in stock; instead I picked up two volumes of Fruits: collections of fashion photographs from Japan. Not reading material as such so I do not consider this a step from my SRchallenge.

I do wonder, though, if these pictures are of everyday street fashion or are deliberately posed? It seems a mixture of both, but, when I consider how craft oriented the culture is, it seems entirely credible that this is what some people are dressing as on a daily basis. (It's fun to imagine the characters of Murakami or Yoshimoto going around like English punkers or Haight street hippies gone Bollywood :)
Thanks to Chris I have joined Kat with a K's reading challenge as well. I really am becoming conscious of what I have set myself up for so I am now trying to make myself as accountable as possible :)***CV

Friday, June 09, 2006

Nick or Vlad?

Free at last :)

This year has been so full of challenges. Ironically education in its academic sense was not among them. Yow! Now all I need to do is put what I learned from year one and what I learned from year two together and hopefully all will coalesce positively.
Next week is cleaning and inventory, which I started somewhat today before saying, "I have next week to do this. I must be crazy." So I closed up and came on home. But......I did make a little stop 'cause Bad Seed is in stock ,used, and I just haaaad to have it. I promise: I'll finish Invitation to a Beheading and Messenger first. I even put back Triskell Tales 2. And if you love deLint like I love ... heck, if you even like him half of what I do then you know how hard that was.
:) One of my end of year gift was something called BookDarts which are these flat metal clips used to hold pages in a book. I had mentioned my SRC in a family letter and one family had thought this the perfect gift. I also recieved from the community a gift card to - (oh I think you know and no I didn't use it today), they know me too well :)

And I was gifted the coolest carved poplar wood Miao mask. It's all purple and black with shaggy painted eyebrows. When I saw it on my table I just had to say" How cool! Who put this here?" the gifter was in front of me but was being mum, "Was it you?! I love it!"

Well I did and I do***CV

Thursday, June 08, 2006


*zzz-t*and we have contact! *bzzzt*bzzzt* hello, hello, control, can you hear me?

Well wasn't that exciting. Just me and Cinncinatus C. wandering in our own wonderlands there for a while.
I seem to have befuddled some of my readers by mention Eugene Ionesco and Edna St.Vincent Millay. Ms. Millay wrote a play called Aria da Capo in which there are two scenes: one involving Pierrot and Columbine from the Commedia del'arte and the other in which two shepards end up coveting the others property though at the beginnig neither had any property to speak of.

Ionesco wrote several plays, perhaps the most famous being Rhinoceros in which a character finds himself slowy changing into such a creature (shades of Kafka). However, I have always preferred the convoluted language of the Lesson (though it is cruel at the end) and the pre-Python dialogue between an old Married couple about a family in which everyone is called Bobby Watson.

There was a point in my HS drama class where Ms De fairly insisted that I not do theater of the absurd anymore. So I turned to Oscar Wilde ;p

I saw that Powell's has a used copy of a Nick Cave biography, so I am busily reading two books to meet my quota of five so I can go get it.
KIP at the Rose Parade is fairly in place. I think I may work on a Rosalind using the yarn I was intending for Moll but never got around to. Rosalind is the illusion Helix scarf on Magknits.


Wednesday, June 07, 2006

A macaroon.....

I set aside the Red and Black for Invitation to a Beheading by Nabakov.

Ahh absurdism. I love the sense with no sensibility. Aria da Capo was one of my favorite plays in highschool along with the Bald Soprano, Rhinoceros and the Chairs.

But of them all I loved best the Bobby Watsons and Pierot. Though I detest coconut***CV

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

fish out of water

Shelter from the storm is all he sought. Really. Nothing more. But, if he had had the opportunity to choose the shelter provided it would not have been this. Really. It was not that he was too good for such surroundings. No, no nothing of the sort. Excuse him as he loosens his collar. It is just that, well, he really, no really, didn’t want to impose. He nods, yes, that’s it. Didn’t want to impose; to bother; to disturb.

Too late. Been disturbed. For quite some time now, couldn’t he tell? Oh, that’s right. New here wasn’t he? That’s alright. Learn in time. Nothing but time here so hurry up come in, come in. Don’t stand on formality. Don’t stand and drip. And whatever you do: don’t stand on my toes. Thank you. Now then, where shall we keep him?



In the pantry?
In the cupboard?
In the chandelier?

The chandelier?!

Oh that’s right. Sorry. Chandelier’s dusty. He might be allergic. Well then….
The well?
No, not the well! What would the fish think?

Follow me.

Who? He is thoroughly lost though he hasn’t taken a step. Really.

Who he asks?
Who indeed?

Muffled sniggers.

Her that’s who!

As he follows her out there wafts from behind him the faintest whisper:

Well, if that’s what the wind blew over what do you think the cat will drag in?


Monday, June 05, 2006

Darker with the day

I decided to skim one book from each of my stacks for theSRC. This means that this week I will be reading:

Alchemy of Mind, Diane Ackerman
Something Rotten, Jasper Fforde
When Fox is a Thousand, Larissa Lai
The Eye, Vladmir Nabokov, and
The Red and Black, Stendhal

I started The Eye this morning on my way to school and I'm almost half way finished (it's a little over a hundred pages). It has been a while since I read any russian authors and I had forgotten how grim and bear it they can be.
I cut out the dragonfly cloth for the peace cranes. Next comes sewing. I hope to have them all sewn and stuffed, ready for wrapping, by Wednesday. Shoot for the impossible I say :)
Wow No More Shall We Part is a ballad album with Nick playing piano and crooning. Oh My. Be still my heart;)
I think if I had bone needles that would be appropriate to KIP at the Vampire Ball. I do have a couple of bone crochet hooks.....****CV

Sunday, June 04, 2006


Two down forty-nine to go.

Soseki Natsume, Trio
Banana Yoshimoto, Good-bye Tsugumi

And now I have returned to The Other Side of Paris to finish what I started before the challenge began. Also I need to start Wuthering Heights. Sadly I did not read Pride and Prejudice last month though I did read the first chapter which was enough to convince me it's worth reading.

Shock I know. When I told a mom that I had never read Austen she looked flabberghasted so I had to say.

Yes but then I had never read Fitzgerald and now I love him.

True, the reason I had avoided Fitzgerald was because once a classmate had compared my writing to F. Scott so I swore I would not read him and thus avoid being accused of copying ..... Can't you tell I have Puritan in me somewhere? Several years later I realized how ridiculous that was and promptly devoured every book I could find *yum*

Speaking of yum, Endangered Species is changing more than its packaging. I recently picked up one of its new Tiger Espressos (Blech). I am now hoarding all originals I can find.

Not much in other news but I did find out that Tove Jansson apparently wrote stories for adults as well as children so I am on the hunt :)

The Vampire Ball is an annual gathering of a festive nature (dancing, booths, stuff). I think it would be fun but unlike concerts I would rather go with someone than alone. I think it would be so much more fun that way. Maybe young Nick is free ..... And considering it's KIP day too I could bring my needles yes ;)**CV

Saturday, June 03, 2006

old black mariah

I am almost finished with my first of fifty one books for the summer reading challenge. I am not sure which I will read next. I'll have a look through the stacks tonight. Ooo "a look through the stacks" that almost sounds like I have a library in my house :)

This summer I plan to do some serious rearranging and actually make the sunroom a library.
I attempted a sample of the fabric peace crane this morning while checking emails. I'm glad I did because it is simpler than I thought and allowed me to concretely realise that the seams are supposed to be visible from the top. Now all I need to do is find where I can buy dried lavender. Though I might just find a variety of dried herbs instead.
Since I may not purchase any new books until I have read five from my list I went to the DDE this afternoon, after bringing in crickets for the class gecko.

Five new listens:

Murder Ballads, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
No More Shall We Part, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
Tilt, Scott Walker
Scarlet's Walk, Tori Amos
Agaetis Byrjun, Sigur Ros

I had figured out the total cost and was thinking 'well I don't have to get two Nick's .... I could wait on the Sigur .....' and then I was at the counter and the young Nick looking clerk saw what I was getting and said:

"We have this one used" and went and took out Murder Ballads from the bottom of a stack.

(oh young cool Nick thing - I think I love you :)

Pleasant conversation about Nick and did I listen to the Birthday Party and How it was a good idea to be reading something along with And the Ass Saw An Angel like a biography for a light read. Yeah ATASAA is a rite of passage in my book. I have never read such a harsh book where there is no happy ending, middle, or beginning.

Nick the clerk mentioned something about a DVD of a tour that Nick did which is either for Murder Ballads or No More Shall We Part. That would be '01 or '02. It sounds like the tour I saw at the Wafield. The concert where I recieved a rose from the goth flower boy.

It is odd to see how cheerful Nick fans are. I mean really. Nick is no Pollyanna.

The Vampire Ball is next Saturday. Should I go?****CV

Friday, June 02, 2006

mint green toes

I went fabric shopping today to make the cranes from Omiyage. Such pretty pretties (anyone know where that quote is from?). One is a blue and purple chrysantamum petaled cloth, one is dusky pink on blue poppies in bud and blossom, a third is muted pink and orange lotuses on a salmon background and the fourth is dragonflies.
A really sweet coworker's last day was today :( My class chose a card for just us to sign and give her and there was also a general community card as well.
I went to Powell's today looking for Kumiko Sudo's other books but they're sold out. Probably for the best as I'm still on book one of the challenge (a collection of Soseki Natsume). I did get two craft books that I can use for the class next year. They are, Color on Color and, White on White, and are filled with pillow, bag, quilt and small projects that learners can really have fun with while mastering new stitch skills.

Oh! And one of my neo knitters who will be in my yarndye/DPN fest started her first knit stitch today :) I was cruel. I had two of them only casting on for a couple of days.

"But we want to know the bunny cast on* "

"Uhuh "

"Okaaaay. Can we knit now?"

"Hmmm Cast on twenty stitches three times and then we can knit."

She cast on herself, did two rows, only lost four stitches and didn't stop trying for an hour. I think that 's pretty good for a first try, ***CV

* Look at the first part of a long tail cast on and tell me it doesn't remind you of bunny ears :)

Thursday, June 01, 2006

six days

What is it about the ages from 8 to 10 that can either make or break you? That make you one of the group or a potential victim? It often seems that one is either completely oblivious to social hierarchies or prey to them.

I have learned so much from this year.
Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte
I am busily trying to figure out the construction of fabric peace cranes. I found the pattern in a book called Omiyage by Kumiko Sudo.
We went through 48 pieces of origami paper in less then an hour. No papercuts :)***CV