••• Sunday, October 30, 2005

Be Deviled 

When I was little, I used to hear adults talk about the Devil’s Night activities over in Detroit. In later years, the deviling of Motown took a sinister turn, but when I was young, I only heard about the innocent things, like kids throwing eggs, at unspecified targets.

Because Halloween was such a joyous and highly anticipated childhood pleasure, my brain could not accept this correlation with Satan. As is common practice in the child's mind, when I was confronted with an unacceptable thought or image, my brain simply twisted it into something more palatable. So, from the time I was about 6, until old enough to feel stupid about it, I believed that those juvenile delinquents in Detroit, made their mischief with deviled eggs.

And, mind you, this was not merely a fuzzy,distant childhood fantasy. I pictured this, as clearly as if I were there: Deviled eggs, arrayed on a tray (the kind with the little scoops), each with an olive garnish and light dusting of paprika, gingerly scooped up by urban greasers and thrown….at things.

Wouldn't it be great if we could hang on to that kind of magical thought?

My thoughts Eggzactly.

Carving Face
Here's a cool little site where you can carve your own, on-line Pumpkin, to send to friends as an email greeting. Be careful, it's kind of addicting.

Knittin' Knugget, Fer Real
My only knitting ops last week were Thursday and Saturday nights, and the forecast looks much the same for this week.

Here's my Branching Out scarf, at the half-way point. I'm going to put it on a holder and start the second half from the other end. I kind of like the tail on this, as it is, and would like both ends to be the same.

As I've said before, I really love the look of the pattern. I am not, however, thrilled with the knitting of it. Unlike the other lace patterns I've worked on, this one does not readily burn itself onto one's brain, for the purpose of being committed to memory. No, this here pattern definitely has committment issues. And if I have to tink and reknit rows 7 and 9 as many times on the second half, as I did on the first, my husband will be facing a distinctly different commitment issue, as in quickly finding which facility accepts my insurance and allows visitors. Or not.

Yikes. It's bedtime, already? I think Daylight savings got greedy and took a weekend.

Happy Weeners, everyone.

One thing vampire children need to be taught early on is not to run with wooden stakes.-Jack Handey

••• Saturday, October 29, 2005

Hello, Weenies 

Sorry about the dearth of updates this week, here at Chez Swine. Evidently a weekend in heaven has its price and I’ve been a busy girl, at work and home.

Without much else of interest going on in my life, I can only offer the following boondoggle:

1) If you buy a twinpack of Slim Jims from the office vending machine, and you notice that, after consuming the first weenie, the second weenie has an oddish, greenish pallor, do not eat the weenie. I repeat: Do not eat the weenie.

Evidently, the oddish, greenish pallor found on a tube of petrified cow-ass, is a sign. A sign easily misread as Green for Go Ahead and eat it. When it really was warning: Green is for the color of your face, in response to the pain. And Go, as in, you will. Much.

2) Every year, around this time, an insidiously repugnant disease makes its way around our neighborhood. It’s known as “Getting-Booed-Sucksalottis.” You can read about it here.
Sure, it sounds all cute and cozy and kind and neighborly. But I hate it. For one thing, since when is Halloween about spreading good cheer? Halloween is about dead people.

But the bottom line, for me, is that this Booed crap is a pain in the ass. In our neighborhood, the rule is you must Re-Boo two other families, within 24 hours, or a hex is put on your household. Yeah, nice.

So, you get home from a long day at work and find the bag of crap on the front step. The most important task is to get copies made of the ghost and the instructions, so you can get the ghost in the window to ward off further blessings and to give your anonymous donors a nod of recognition.

But a person might forget to bring the papers to work, to copy. And then her husband's copy machine might run out of ink, mid- copy, requiring her to fill in the weak areas of the copies with a purple crayon, because she can't find any black markers, or crayons.

Then there's the shopping for the gifts. And putting the bags together. And trying to sneak them on a doorstep, without being seen. Activities to cram into an already busy life schedule.

Lucky for me, the vending machine company at work was holding what they called a "Product Recall Sale," so I was able to get gift bag booty, right there at work. A half dozen packages of Slim Jims, for practically nothing. ::For some reason, however, I'm particularly anxious that my identity remains unknown,this year. Fortunately, there haven't been any stories of late night trips to the E.R., passing 'round the 'hood.::

And next year, I'm going to be one of the first people on the block with a ghost in the window. On Labor Day.

3) On casual Friday, we get to wear jeans. Yesterday I wore dress slacks. Why? Because some time Thursday, while I slept, I was abducted by aliens, who brought me up into their spaceship and took two scoops of my ass, and applied them to the sides of my hips. One mooshy scoop a-piece.

Seriously, I could not zip my jeans. Either pair. I even laid down on the bed. Here's the weird thing: I wore these jeans last weekend, and I have not gained any weight, this week. Keep in mind, I do 40 to 50 minutes of cardio, 4 or 5 times a week. In fact, I've lost about three pounds over the past 10 days. Yet, somehow,and practically overnight, I developed these lumps of fat on my hips. And now my jeans don't fit.


4) The other day I was reading an animal book to The Cakers. She's had this book since babyhood, so was familiar with all the names for the animals. Or so I thought. When I pointed to the chinchilla and asked her what it was, she said she didn't know. So, I gave her a hint by pointing to my chin. She looked at my chin for a few seconds, then said "Whiskers?"

Knitting Knuggets
I only had one knitting op this week, but an update is forthcoming.

This is my first weekend, in a while, where I don't have any place I have to be. I think I'm gonna go enjoy a little piece of that. I'll leave you with a shot of the lake I took last weekend, at twilight.

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••• Sunday, October 23, 2005


What was to be a simple weekend escape, somehow branched into a spectacular display of color and soul-enriching gluttony. In other words: I knit and drank and stared up a tree. Or two.

Of course, when it came time, we didn't want to leave for home. Our collective despair was best encapsulated by The Cakers, who, upon hearing the news, said "We can't go home. I still have three clean underwears!"

::I confess to spending more than a few minutes trying to figure a way to work this uncannily poignant logic into another, legitimate day or two off from work. Hello, this is Marcia. I won't be in to work today or tomorrow. We're stranded up north, on account of Too Much Clean Underwear. We're currently at two pair a piece, which puts our ETA some time after dinner,Tuesday. Wetting accidents notwithstanding.::

My special weekend project was a 5th of Vanilla Rum the
Branching Out scarf pattern, from Knitty.

The yarn is Nashua, worsted wool with a dash of alpaca. I bought it last week on my maiden voyage to a brand spanking new yarn shop, just two miles from my house. En skein, the yarn felt very soft. En knit, it's a bit scratchy and splits. But it is pretty.

The leaves are courtesy of our cottage neighbors' yard. I walked around out there for about 10 minutes, through damp leaves and a cold drizzle, in pj's and slippers, to find the least blighted leaves. For all the beauty they show on the trees, they were slim pickin's on the ground.

At first I felt a little silly walking around in the rain, wearing pajamas and slippers and a camera. I'm thinking my hair had a story to tell as well. But I figured this image was better than the last one the neighbors had of me, back in August...Severe Digression Warning...when I ran through the cottagehood, warning all of a sighting of a poisonous snake, in the water.
It's a Coppertop. My husband recognized it first thing. I said.

A battery? Asked one neighbor.

No, a Coppertop snake.

You mean a Copperhead?

Yeah, a Copperhead. They're poisonous. I took a picture of it. My husband told me that's what it was. And he knows this stuff. He was a member of Ranger Rick. And he once hiked some mountains in New Hampshire. Plus, I looked it up on the internet.

I didn't know Copperheads were this far north. Said another guy.

Looks like a plain ol' water snake to me. Said Juanita, the chain-smoking, 80 year-old, grand dame of the lake. Saw 'em all the time, when I was a kid. Can't hurt ya. See here in this picture? It has a yeller belly. Just like the ones we saw when I was a kid. Just a water snake.
Well, I knew they were wrong. So I went back online in search of more information. To bolster my claims. I ended up finding a picture of a water snake, indigenous to Michigan, called a copper belly sumvabitch. The snake pictured on the website could've been the less evil twin of the one I saw. Sssssshit. Said, I.

It would of been easy for me to just let it go. But no Yeller Belly am I. Armed with this new information, I returned to the scene of the faux pas, and confessed my stupidity. Juanita snorted, mid-exhale. The rest of them teased without mercy. I suspect this story will be fireside fodder for generations. I suppose there are worse ways for the neighorhood newbie to make herself known.

And now that my true assedness is known to all, I figure I'm free to be fucktarded.

50 Ways to Love Your Leafer
On the way out of town, my husband treated me to this view, from atop a local golf course. The lake you see is a bigger, more popular neighbor to our lake. I guess you can see why.

This was taken on the highway 115, just a couple miles out of town:

Now: Back to life. Back to reality.

Happy Travails.

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••• Friday, October 21, 2005

It Doesn't Always Suck... 

...to be me.

Last week my husband requested my presence, this weekend, on a trip north, to the cottage.

First, I sighed.
Then I said no.
Then I said maybe.
Then I said okay. Bastard.

I know I've said it before, so I'll just briefly rebitch. I hate coming home on a Friday afternoon, after a week of working with a fork in my eye, to bust a hump in preparation, so as to ensure we're on the road before the weekend traffic ensues.

But then I decided that with Thanksgiving break still a month away, I needed a bit of a holiday. So I took today off. And, aside from the torture of the 3-hour entrapment with the non-stopping-gum-flapping*, non-napping Cakers, I think I made the right decision.

Following is just a sampling of the ocular ambrosia to which we were privy, for nearly the entire journey.

This was on northbound 131:

This is the Betsie River, where it goes under 115.

And a rear view of 115:

Knitting Knuggets
I am almost done with the second sleeve on my cardigan. I didn't bring my blocking supplies, so finishing will have to wait. I know. I cried a little too.

However, I did pack a lovely weekend retreat project.** Hopefully, a real knitting post is forthcoming. Soon.

*This time the post-toddler-torture included a 5 minute fake sneeze fest, 10 minutes of "Bawk, Bawk, Bawk...I'm a chicken momma...bawk, bawk bawk...Momma? I'm a chicken..." And my favorite..."Momma, when I say 'momma,' you say 'Ana.' k? Momma? Momma!?!"
Momma? Ana?
Momma? Ana?
Momma! Ana!
Momma! Ana!
Mommamommamomma. Ananananna.

And all the while, I wondered if there is a 24-hour, emergency, outpatient, OB-GYN clinic up here, where I can maybe get my tubes untied. Then ripped out. And fed to a pack of wild boars.

**Am I the only one who finds selecting and packing the appropriate knitting shit the most stressful part of preparing to leave town? I mean, I can go a weekend without clean underwear, or makeup. But forget a key knitting project item? Weekend over.

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••• Monday, October 17, 2005


For those of you who did not go to Rhinebeck, but are new to the Left-Behindbeck-Post-Trauma-Blog-Drama experience, let me offer you some words of advice, and consolation. The pain; it will pass.

It's actually a lot like a bad case of cramps. At first, the pain is uncomfortable, but manageable. As the intensity cranks up a bit, you crank up the denial. Oh, it's not that bad. You say.

Eventually, you cannot ignore the debilitating waves of agony, shredding, ripping and tearing away, at your innermost, delicate sensibilities. Finally, you take to the bed, and give in to the misery. Between rolling tides of torment, you learn to appreciate the sweetness of brief relief, and gather strength to brace against the next round.

Then, of course, there is the vomit.
And the rrhea.
And the bloating.
Of the soul.

Mercifully, you will pass out, from the pain. ::The pint of Jim Beam didn't hurt:: ::Either.::
You sleep the sleep of the dead.
And dream the dream of the fiberly downtrodden.

By morning, it's the same as it ever was.
With fewer comments.

Olive You, Too
I'd been saving this picture for my With Freuds Like You... series. But tonight, for some reason, I was shaken, not stirred, to share.

Na-Na boo boo.

P.S. Thanks to the members of my special oracle for the testical encouragement, in comments.

••• Saturday, October 15, 2005

Let's Get Quizzical 

If you think my quizzies are hard, wait until you see my testies- Mar*k Lo*ndon, my Junior College Instructor, 1976.

Up until last year, my state was just about the only one in the country that didn’t require a specific license to practice in my profession. There was, however, this thing called “Certification.”

To become certified, at my educational level, one had to have two years of post-graduation experience, under the alleged “supervision” of a “certifucated" person. After which, some boxes on a form were checked and the form was sent to the state licensing bureau. Nobody checked the veracity of the information of the form. And there was lots of room for fudging. Lying, even. It was a documented system of professional nepotism.

Having this certification entitled a person to:
1) add “XYZ” to their signature credentials.
2) Sign off on someone else seeking the credentials.
3) Bragging rights to friends and family.

In other words, it meant Jack.

Two years after I was out of grad school, a co-worker, with her XYZ, offered to sign off on me. I politely declined. Although she was a nice person and all, I had more clinical experience than she did. And better skills. So if getting certified required her validation and approval, I didn’t want it. Or need it.

Last year, my state caught up with the rest of the world, and set new, stringent licensing standards. Anyone with a current XYZ was grandfathered in. Those without the hallowed credentials were fucked. Somehow I missed the memo on this.

So, as of July 5, 2005, in order to obtain the license now required for me to practice in my profession, at my current educational level, I have to take a test.

A ree-ree hard test.

A ree-ree hard test, on stuff I memorized and promptly forgot, over 13 years ago. Theories and shit. Both the Jung and the old. And the Classical and Operant and the fixed and the variable and specific distinctions between the several thousand family therapy models...(I'll take a Tank of Oxygen for 500, Alex)

On my current limited license, I can practice for seven years, without the exam. Initially, those seven years felt like a gift, but last week, on impulse, I decided to just do it. I'm planning on taking it some time in January.

Of course, the business of licensure exams is a huge racket. Several companies offer test review packets, that cost over 200.00. The recommended study prep parameter is two hours a day, for two months. That's right.

That's two hours a day, in addition to my full-time work day and family and 50 minutes of cardio and knitting and blogging and getting drunk and falling down and blogging about that.

In addition to buying a study packet (which has not arrived yet, after a week), I joined a website that allows me unlimited access to online practice exams, for 30 days. I'm starting off with this website, as it is giving a good idea on what areas to focus on and the trickiness of the questions (i.e. most of the choices are correct, depending on the context).

They also send me a dorky email, daily, with words of encouragement and a chunk of information to study. So, with the 30 day clock ticking on that paid membership, I've been spending most of my free time running through the tests.

Evidently, academia and humor don't mix, in my brain. Sorry for the bore. I guess now is as good of a time as any to be boring, what with all the worm eating, and what not.

I'm actually kind of excited to take this test. Because when I get these credentials, it's going to mean something. I just wish there was some way to indicate that I earned mine, the hard way.

I'm sure you'll be hearing more on this. In fact I know it. I hereby apologize, up front.

In the meantime, here are some leaves for La. I took this shot this morning, from my front porch, in my jammies.

Oh yeah, that Junior College instructor (a former state trooper, even), now owns and operates several strip clubs in the area. True story. Thus, the asterisks.


••• Thursday, October 13, 2005

Out of the Fryin' Pan 

I'm worn out people. Flatter'n a pope cake.

What's a pope cake?
This is a pope cake:

A pancake that contains a picture of the pope. This pope cake was cooked up by some people here in Michigan.

They say it's a miracle. I say pass the Mrs. Butterworth.

I'm too tired to explain why I'm so tired. It's a big bunch of little things and a little bunch of big. I really just need a good night's sleep, or two. In the meantime, I ain't got two brain cells to rub together.

I have been doing some knitting. I've finished both front pieces of the cardigan.

I found this Meme over at Isela's. You google your name with the word "needs."
All Marcia needs is her scarecrow….
Marcia needs to be fired.
Marcia needs to grow up.
Marcia needs new shoes every 500 miles.
Marcia needs to die.
Marcia needs dick.....
Marcia needs to be slapped over the head with a fence post.
Marcia needs to shut the fuck up.
If Google said it, it must be true.

I'm outta here.

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••• Sunday, October 09, 2005

She's Got Per-swine-ality 

I'm sooo behind in all things relative to my current existence, that I have no idea where to begin. So, I won't. Tonight I'm just going to pretend that none of it is true, and present to you, some Sunday Night Sillies.

Have you heard of the Draw-a-Pig Personality Test?.

Here's mine. I drew this the touch pad mousy thing, so it wasn't my best work.

Click to view my test results

Going to the Garden
Last week, Carole made up a button for bloggers who are not going to Rhinebeck, and not happy about it.

Before I saw her button, I had already started work on a similar item, to represent not only us pathetics who, once again, are not making the trek to upstate New York, but also to those of us who consistently miss out on the other blogger/knitter social fusions, such as those that occurred last weekend, in Chicago (Franklin, Bonne Marie and Stephanie) and Vermont (Lee Ann, Juno, and Norma).

Won't you join me?

(Before posting this button, I did check with Carole, and she gave me her blessing.)

Wanted: Freudian Slippers
Here's some Happy Blogiversary piggies for Mim. Yes, I really do have a collection of pictures of my feet. And that's all I'm saying on the matter.

On the other hand, we have different fingers-Jack Handey

••• Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Today my college boy turns 19. How can it be? Just yesterday, it seems, I was at Chuckie Jesus, celebrating a four year old's birthday.

Oh wait, that was yesterday. With the Cakers.

I was thinking of writing up a snarky review of the place, but the UpChuck Cheeses is simply too repugnant. It wouldn’t even be fun. I do, however, want to brag on myself for rolling a 450 in Skeeball, and winning the jackpot. That's right. 150 extra prize tickets, which allowed me to select a gift from the coveted middle shelf. I selected the tampon.

My son seems to be holding his own, away at college. We speak on the phone about once a week. Student initiated. We also communicate a few times a week, via the instant messenger. A tool with which, I confess, I keep track, of his comings and goings (i.e. if he's in his dorm room, or not).

Before labelling me Bad Chopper Momma, I think running into my son online is as innocent as running into a neighbor I'm stalking a neighbor at the grocery store. Right?

A couple of weeks ago, via Instant Messaging, my son mentioned that he has been seeing a girl. Okay, I can’t remember if he brought it up first, or if I happened to mention that I did not see him on-line all weekend and wondered what the hell he's been up to and went on to speculate that he finally succumbed to the demon beer bong and that pack of loose women with pierced cho-cho’s and diseased pelvic regions, who roam university towns of Northerm Michigan, preying on the unsuspecting, innocent offspring of mothers who did their best to raise their boys up right? It may have gone something like that.

Either way, the most important thing was that he told me he's been seeing a girl.

Boy: I met a girl.
Mom: Oh??? Who is she?
Boy: Someone who played summer ball with So and So, who told me to look her up.
::long pause::
Mom: So…
Boy: What?
Mom: What’s she like?
Boy: She’s a smartass. Funny.
::long pause::
Mom: So she plays basketball?
Boy: Yep.
Mom: Is she cute?
Boy: Yeah.
Mom: What’s her name?
Boy: Tracy
Mom: That’s a nice name.
Boy: Yeah.
Mom: Is she tall?
Boy: My height.
Mom: Where is she from?
Boy: ****ford (a suburb of our community).
Mom: We can have her folks over for Thanksgiving!
Boy: What??
Mom: It’s a joke, son.
Boy: Haha (he’s a firm non-lol-er. I love that about him.)
Mom: Are you going to see her again?
Boy: Yeah.
::more pause::
Mom: I don’t mean to be bugging you about this, but it’s kind of awkward to scrutinize you via the internet.
Boy: Haha, that’s fine.
Mom: All Righty then. I’ll let you go.
Boy: Bye.

Now, my son has never had a real girlfriend, with the exception of a four week steady in ninth grade. So, this was exciting for me. If he were at home, sharing this information, I’m sure I would’ve been able to ply a little more meaning from his mono syllabic responses, with the help of nonverbals.

Frustrated by what felt like a tease of information about what could be a very important developmental transition in my family’s collective life: A real, grown-up girlfriend. I did what any of you mothers would have done, in my position. I poured myself a Vernor’s and Vanilla, wiped the spittle from my chin, and proceeded to stalk her ass. All the way down to an aerial photo of her house. And I am not ashamed.

Of course, I was trying to be real cool about all this, and in subsequent IM’s, I never asked about her. And he didn’t offer.

Finally, last night, I asked. "Uh, we’re not seeing that much of each other right now. Things turned a little random." ::The new teen lingo thingo of the random use of "random" drives me nuts.::

Damn. I hope I didn't jinx it by casting on for a mother of the groom shawl.

(Please note that this post was intended to be published last night, but Blogger was down. Please play along. Also, I didn't get a chance to proof it my usual 6,437 times. Thank you for your patience in this matter).

••• Monday, October 03, 2005

Hearty Ho' 

I love fall.
And, gosh darn fuck it all, how I can't wait for it to get here.
Yesterday it was 84 degrees.In October. Today I asked my husband (weather nerd) how long this unseasonable heat was supposed to last, and he said "cold front comin' Wednesday or Thursday. Supposed to drop to 60's."

So we now refer to fall as a cold front? Good thing there's no such thing as global warming...

Anyway, even if it is hot in October, I still love that the days are getting shorter. Being forced indoors, long before bedtime. No more mandatory playing outside, until bedtime. Or the expected after dinner stroll to the park.

Nope. We're in the house.
All nice and cozy.
And bloggy and knitty.
Performing indecent acts of culinary.
In the kitchen.

This past weekend I indulged my inner squirrel, by cooking a couple big meals and burying half of each into the freeze for the future. Saturday was cabbage roll day. My first attempt. It did not go well.

Well, the meat filling was great, as was the lemon-based sauce. But the cabbage wrap turned out to be less an edible wrap, and more like a protective coat of armor. My sweet husband, who would eat dirt out of shoe box, if offered, said it wasn't that bad. Then added that the cabbage problem was probably his fault, because there were three different kinds, and he just didn't know which one...

Then he asked if we had any dirt.

Sunday I went with La's Drunken Bovine Stew. If you love the meat and the wine and the drinking of the wine, then you've got to try this recipe.

It's just, well, yum.

Rich, exotic, earthy yum.

Drunken yum.


I've tossed together a few culinary concoctions, in my day, but rustlin' up this brew was a bit of an adventure. First of all, I've never used turnips in a recipe before. In fact, I was not really sure what I was looking for in a turnip, at the grocery store. Which would explain why I came home with anise, instead. But I digress.

The turnips are perfect in this stew. Earthy. French. Provincial. Well, truthfully, I wouldn't know about that French part. Or the provincial. I'm just talking out of my butt, if you must know the truth.

But, back to the story. The recipe also calls for saffron. I've never used saffron in a recipe before, either. In fact, I didn't even know it was a spice. I thought it was some kind of neo-margarine thangy thing.

I wasn't going to use the saffron, at first. This was mostly because I was uncomfortable dipping into my son's college fund, to buy a spice I wasn't sure I was going to like. Plus, it comes packaged in these little glass vials, that look like something crack might be sold in. Well, maybe in the nicer crackhoods.

In fact, just holding the jar and thinking of crack cocaine, made me feel guilty by association. Then I wondered if buying glass vials of a mystical spice, was a secret gateway to the hard stuff? Well, the 15 dollar an ounce price tag didn't help either. So, I passed on the gateway spice, and decided that if Lawry's seasoned salt and worcestershire was good enough for my ancestors, it was good enough for me.

Back home, after a glass of wine (or so), and a sip of La's powerful broth elixer, I decided that I wanted this shit to be the best that it could be. So I said to myself, College Smollege. I'm going back for the stuff. And that I did. (I almost got into a verbal altercation in the parking lot, with the Spousetard of a Dicktard, but I didn't. I did decide, however, that it's not a good thing to drink and grocerize).

Anyway, in case any of you are thinking of trying the recipe, here's some notes:
1) Next time I'm putting in more turnips. Our store only had them in bags and they were smallish, I think. I wasn't sure how big a medium turnip is supposed to be, so I under compensated.

2)I wasn't sure where/when the garlic powder was supposed to go, so I tossed it with the flour. I only used four cups of water and 2 cups wine and added two extra dollops of bouillon dust. ::My husband has the gout. And I had a taste for the wine. But it came out perfect. Purrr-feckt. ::

3) I used about 1 teaspoon of salt and a quarter teaspoon of pepper. I might do more pepper next time. I love pepper.

In case anyone is interested, here's a shot of a vial of The Stuff

Kind of look like petrified pubes. Ancient, mystical, petrified pubes.

Anyway, hats off to you, La. You're a goddess. I see that today she has posted a cake recipe. With booze. No less. ::Is it just me, or is there a theme emerging, here?::

Knitting Knuggets
I finished the back of that cardie and am to the armhole shaping on the left front. I've had a very pissy attitude about this project, for some reason. I don't know if it's because it's boring, on the heels of lace, or that I feel guilty not finishing Peaches, or that the yarn is futt-bugly. But after I took this picture, I developed a new appreciation for it. It's purty. Dagnabbit.

It's nigh time for me to head to bed.
Tomorrow the Cakers turns four years old. ::sigh::
Wednesday, Cameron turns 19. ::Yeah, that's right. 15 years. And I wasn't young when I had Cam. No, it's not funny. I swear, I was sure my eggs had long turned to powder.::


Got a busy week lined up. Visits/posts may be few and far between. I leave you with some Handey purls.

I can still recall old Mister Barnslow getting out every morning and nailing a fresh load of tadpoles to the old board of his. Then he'd spin it round and round, like a wheel of fortune, and no matter where it stopped he'd yell out, "Tadpoles! Tadpoles is a winner!" We all thought he was crazy. But then we had some growing up to do. -Jack Handey

••• Saturday, October 01, 2005

The Descent into Ordinary 

I'm outta my mind this week, with job pressures. I love my job. I hate feeling like I don't have the time to do it right. This year the number of kids on my caseload almost doubled, and I'm loving each and every one of them. Those kids are why I do this.

I also started the school year having to conduct two complicated evaluations (in speshul etchakation, it's a vital, legally prescribbled element of my job). I take my responsibilities very seriously and want my reports to not only accurately represent facts, but also have meaning for both the staff and family. So, I write and rewrite. I word, and reword. I ruminate on the rewrite. And rewrite the rumination. It takes over my brain.

Having the extra students under my watch, has cut into my usually protected rumination time, which means I'm bringing it home. I think it's taking a toll.

Thursday morning, I go to the garage and get into my car to go to work.
So I'm in the car. The door is shut. The key is in my hand. The ass is in the passenger seat.

And then there's the knitting.... I've been working on the back of that cardie. I get to the armhole shaping, and shape it up in a snap. Except I'm missing two stitches. I rip it out, shape it again, and still, I'm short.

So I do the math. 64 stitches minus 2x4, minus 4x2, minus...well, you get it. I'm still 2 stitches short.

Last night, after ripping it back once more, I get the brilliant notion to count the base stitches. 62. The exact number I cast on, per pattern instructions.

Last week, when I started this sweater, I initially thought to cast on 64 stitches, because I wanted to make it a little bigger. Then I changed my mind. I remember it now. But those two extra stitches kind of stuck to my head, like a booger on the wall.

Yeah. I'm rambling now. And no, I'm not making excuses for my lameass posts this week. And my pathetic attempt at comment mongering. ::Let's just all pretend I didn't go so far as to create a second blog...::

The Mutha Hood
Last week we took the Cakers to the zoo, where they have a temporary exhibit, celebrating the animals of Australia.

Truthfully, it was pretty lame. The sign said that the exhibit was being held over, due to popular demand. But I'm pretty much thinking that the bevy of bedraggled birds, rodents and reptiles have been abandoned by their owners, and the zoo people are just making good in a bad situation. But I digress.

The most interesting animals in this exhibit, were the wallabies. A momma, a daddy and a large baby. When we first came upon them, the baby was in the mother's pouch. Awww...how cute. Right? Well, no.

In the picture below, you might notice the size of the baby. Particularly in contrast to the pouch. That's one honkin'baby.

So, there sat the mother, her pouch flap flat on the ground, like the back gate of a semi trailer. Inside, sort of, was this huge-ass baby, trying to wrangle a good suckle angle. Obviously, the mom is uncomfortable, and adjusts her position, which causes the kid to tumble out. ::I was too dumbstruck by the scene to take a picture of that part::

The kid tries, once more, to climb inside, but again, tumbles out. Notice the mother's expression in both pictures, taken minutes apart. I know that look. And I know that why-don't-you-just-kill-me-now-and-drink-my-blood-then-have-my-worn-ass-carcass-made-into-doormat-upon-which-you-can-wipe-your-feet-on-daily-basis? feeling of motherhood.

The baby eventually tires of the repeated and unceremonious dumping by the mama, and briefly moves away. My empathic relief for that ma-marsupial was physically palpable.

Then, along comes daddy....

Ain't that just the way?
Sometimes it all just sucks.

Go Green

Well, gotta get ready for the big game. For today, we are a house divided. (If you're from Michigan (or nearby) you know what game of which I speak. If you're not from Michigan (or nearby) you probably don't care.)

::Actually, with this being such a hugely ass-holed U of M community, it would be an ideal time to go to the grocery store. And perhaps save my marriage the unnecessary strain, to boot. .::