••• Monday, November 28, 2005

Don't Touch That Dial 

Warning:The following update contains information that may shock the sensibilities of routine visitors of this site. Any feelings of disbelief or incredulousness (that was awkward) are not the fault of your receiver. This is not a drill.

There's been some knittin' going on. Umm Hmmm.

Saturday, I announced to my family, that I was not lifting a finger all day, unless it was related in any way to:
1) The Propagation and/or sustenance of my own happiness or self-gratification
2) The immediate needs of a child, under the age of 18.
3) Rid my fridge of the rotting flesh of fowl, without incurring the wrath of the resident, rotting flesh regulator.
4) Flipping off my husband when he asks "what's for dinner?"

So, mid-afternoon, after putting to simmer, a pot of turkey soup, (see item #3), I ran away to play at My New Yarn Shop.

I may have mentioned this before, but in September, a yarn shop opened just minutes from my home (for those of you who are not into time travel, that would be 1.8 miles). Before this place opened, the closest yarn shop was a whole 11 miles away. And, while that place is cute and cozy (read small), there's an air about it. No really. Smells like Poop and Potpourri. All day. Every day.

Above and beyond the convenient location,I love that My New Yarn Shop is staffed by people who are frieknowledgeabledgable and otherwise not at all annoying. The store carries a nice range of yarns, including Cascade, Noro, Manos, Debbie Bliss and Lorna's Laces. A couple of weeks ago, they had a Hanne Falkenberg trunk show. (And that Mermaid, in person/fish, makes me think things.) And there's always been some kind of instruction going on, any time I've been there, be it a large class, or an informal circle of 3 or 4.

On Saturday, I bought yarn to make Ryan's Dulaan Cloud Hat.

When I told the clerk what I was planning to make, she wanted to check it out herself, and fired up the internet. On my recommendation, she went to Norma's place where I knew she could quickly view a sample Cloud. But when Norma's site came up, on the screen, I experienced a peculiar sense of panic. The thought of my secret internet garden being invaded, by a stranger, right in front of me, made me feel vulnerable. Violated.

When I caught a quick view of my name on Norma's link list, I realized the specific, underlying source of my fear. The Pinker Pucker Post. And that this woman,standing before me, mouse in hand, was one click away from finding out that the woman standing before her, in the lovely Branching Out scarf, with the beautiful halo, is common blog skank.

I grabbed my bag and ran like the wind.

Later that evening, I was back on Cloud 1. ::Sorry, no modeling this one. I'm a member of the Sisters of the Pinheads, with Norma.::

In addition to completing one hat, I very nearly finished the finishing on the Vogue Cardie. Saturday and Sunday I seamed, and last night I put the fringe on the scarf ::much to Bella's delight-turned-horror. I'm gonna miss that cat.:: Only thing left to do is sew in a zipper. After I buy one.

For the most part, I'm fairly pleased with how the sweater turned out. For some reason, one of the sleeve-to-shoulder seams looks great, while the other one, not so much. I can't for the life of me, figure out why. I sewed them, one after the other, under the exact same conditions. Same needle. Same pins. Same 1.5 glass of wine. Per sleeve. Weird, eh? While it's not cutting edge fashion, it will be a great sweater for autumn strolls and hayloft rolls.

The Anti-Knit Content
Really, I don't think I've had so much knit shit in one post, ever. I think we need to digress.

Have you heard about the high school senior, here in Michigan, who ran for mayor and won? Imagine what it's like to be a teen living in this kid's neighborhood.

Mom: Did you empty the dishwasher?

Normal Teen: No.

Mom: Well, why not?

Normal Teen: I forgot.

Mom: Why can't you be more like that little Mayor kid, down the street?

Normal Teen: Ma, don't start.

Mom: I'll bet he remembers to empty the dishwasher. Every night. Just before he balances the city budget. He is responsible for the operation of an entire city, and here, you can't remember to do one thing. For your mother. Oy.

I wonder if in some weird, Freudian way, Kojak was sucking on his own head.- Steve Webster.

••• Saturday, November 26, 2005

They Came, They Saw, They Tooted 

Thanksgiving Dinner was a rousing success.

The good:
-Turkey rocked.
-Gravy really rocked.
-One oven mitt didn’t catch fire.
The bad:
-One oven mitt caught fire.
-I acquired a first degree burn after sticking my thumb into the fresh-from-the-micro mashed potatoes. ::Why? Well, to see if they were hot. Duh. They were. I’m a pretty good cook. But I don’t cook pretty.::
-I melted a knob on my stovetop while making the gravy
The scary:
I almost strained the gravy, and all it’s Martha-ly* goodness, down the sink. For some reason, every year, my dinner guests like to stand next to the stove and ask me probing questions about my general health and hygiene practices, as I brown my bits, for the good of the gravy nation. This is not a good thing, on account of me having the ADHD, which means I’m always an impulse away from a total fuck pas du jus. Luckily, as I was about to dump the load into the colander, in the sink, I realized I needed a sieve, not a colander. Even a goof like myself knows that a sieve needs a bowl. Whew.
Yesterday was spent cleaning up and running about 8000 loads of dishes.
And on third day. She sat on her ass.

Ether Or
The last three times my son has come home from college, at very nearly the very moment he walks into the house, my Comcast goes out. (okay, maybe it’s very nearly the moment he fires up his computer) The first time it happened, it was too random for a second thought. The second time, I took notice but didn’t say anything, because it sounded so stupid. The third time (this weekend), my son made the observation, about this now impossible to ignore pattern.

As you might remember, we’ve had this love/hate thing with Comcast since last spring. For the past couple months, however, and aside from this glitch with the boy, all things wireless have been full stream ahead. But still, this is a problem. And we're tired of problems. Even if it's an issue just once a month, we're just not putting up with it.

We’ve had enough.
We have our standards.
We will no longer compromise.

So, after a couple late night and emotion-laden discussions about priorities and realities and self-respect, my husband and I have come to a decision.

I’m sure gonna miss that boy.

*I used Martha’s method of tossing carrots, celery, onion and the turkey neckbone under the meat rack in the roasting pain. After the birdie is perty, you brown the veggies further, on the stove top for awhile. Add some wine and water and flour and stir and strain. And Mmmm. I’m telling you. This stuff is The Shit.


••• Wednesday, November 23, 2005

No Achey Bakey 

My Thanksgiving Things are going much smoother than I anticpated. My son ended up catching a ride almost home, with his roommate, who lives 20 miles from our home. When I first suggested this course, (all via IM), I was accused of being "totally against" driving up to get him. ::Totally, is such a strong word. Randomly Against would have been more apt, but I wasn't in a trifling mood,and let it lie.:: The almost happy resolve of that issue was quite the easement on my mind.

Thank you Nathalie, for reminding me in comments that I wasn't to do the pie thing again. At this writing, 4 pies have been safely delegated to dinner and dessert guests and my lone apple beaut, just came out of the oven.

While the pie baked, the taters shaked. All that's left is the stuffing and turkey, and finding linen napkin #8. Oh. And finding the China. And washing it. And taking a trial run on a new wine.

Low Branches
I wanted to share a picture of my Branching Out being utilized. This shot was taken before I left for work yesterday. At the time, I thought I looked fresh and clean. I see now that my blush needed blending (my mom always walked around with makeup dollops on her face,when she was my age, drove me bonkers.), and I should have refrained from finishing off the can of Salt and Vinegar Pringles before bed.

I'm sorry about the angle, but it was the only way to get most of the length. As you can see, it's ree-ree long. And I like it like that.

I'm currently long on topics, but short on time. So I'll just get the pluck outta here. For those of you celebrating the holiday, or not, Eat,Love and Be Well.

••• Monday, November 21, 2005

Knuckin' Futz 

Teresa tagged me for a MEME, as follows:

1. FLIP open a dictionary and point to a word.
2. Type the word into Google images.
3. PICK an image that strikes you.
4. Write a 10 line RIFF off the image.
5. Use the word or the meaning of the word at least once within the first 5 lines of your riff.
6. Tag 3 other bloggers on your list.

Like Teresa, I was a bit confused by the meaning of "Riff." According to Miriam-Webster it can mean A short, succinct, usually witty comment. So let the riffin' get stiffin'.

Every month, when the moon was full, the village elders anointed one eligible bachelor, to escort the sacred pig to the butcher, then assist in its eventual slaughter.

At the conclusion of this deed, the elgible designee was to bring the meat back to the village, where it would be barbequed and served that evening, at the courtship cotillion.

Days turned into weeks, as Clem and the pig futzed about the countryside,trampling generations of rich tradition. When Clem and his pork package had not returned by the next full moon, the elders had no recourse but to pass two new laws. The first law put the entire village on a strict vegan diet. The second mandated that all virgin daughters be given their dowries, and sent away, to live as they please.

Without virgins to marry, or meat to eat, the village people began to die off, or move away. The handful that remained, opened what is now a thriving bed and breakfast, with an adjoining bathhouse and Starbucks.
Futz was the word. Okay, I went over the 10 line spec. And yeah, the piece was neither succinct or clever. So, Pork Me.

And I tag, Sandy and JStrizzy and Gwyn.

Knuttin’ Honeys
I’ve finished the knit portion of the Branching Out scarf, and here it is, Branching Out to block.

Due to my off-balance, preoccupation with symmetry, I decided to knit the scarf in two pieces, which will soon be joined at the stitch.

In other knitting knews, the Vogue cardie is now fully blocked and awaiting final construction.

Knuts and Bolts
My personal and professional schedule over the past two weeks, has sucked some serious, un-pinkened ass. And while it always feels like I have a story or two, batting about my demented belfry, finding the time to actually pitch them, is another matter.

Maybe I can get to it, later this week. After I drive 2 hours, one-way, to pick up my son from college, just before I go to the grocery store, to shop for Thanksgiving dinner, just prior to baking some apple pies, and cleaning the house and fixing Thanksgiving dinner, and cleaning it up, and driving two hours, one-way, to bring my son back to college. Maybe after that.

Whatever doesn’t kill me, makes me stronger. Not lifting weights doesn’t kill me. Therefore, not lifting weights, makes me stronger. Jack Handey


••• Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Pucker Power 

::Tasteless, Tacky, Crude, even, Content Warning::

Aging sucks. No doubt.You got your mood swings. Boob swings. And pube things, on a chin.

There's the weird thing with the hips, where your once sweeping curves, seemingly overnight, fill in and square up, like a fine work of brickmanship.

Then, there is the issue with the ass. And I’m not talking about that thing that happens around mid-40's, when your two butt cheeks appear to merge as one, uncracked butt-circle (aka The Uni-Butt).

I'm talking about a deeper, darker issue. I'm talking about the bottom-line hallmark of our impending, aesthetic demise: The aging booty hole.

The tail of the old butt-hole is actually a bad news/good news affair. The bad news is, we’re all going to die. The good news is, we can now leave this earthly kingdom, with a brighter, shinier, pinker pucker. Thanks to this product (While you're down there,check out the cootchie shave.)(On the webpage.)(Of course.)

My husband introduced this subject at Sunday dinner, a month or so back. He saw it on a Reality TV show, where a real live woman went to her real live doctor's office, laid herself on the table, perked her rump to the heavens and lightened up, a hole lot.

First I was stunned. Then intrigued. Now, I have some questions:
1) What is the goodness in having a more youthful butt hole? Can a pinker sphincter improve the quality of my life, in any way? Does a woman with a pinkened poo-portal, project more pluck and poise, than your average brown-eyed girl?

2) What is the motivation? Does a woman just wake up one morning, take a look in the butt-cam and say that “brown-ass shit has got to go?” Or is it a decision made at the behest of a devoted lover, one whose secret sexual fantasy might include moist wads of chewed Bubble Yum?

3) Are there any post-procedural restrictions? Can a person still drink the Pinot Noir? Eat the blueberry pie?

4) Do you have to stick to your own, natural skin tone family, or are color palettes available? ::I'm thinking along the lines of Hiny Dancer Blush or Hole Lotta Mauve or Snow Ride, for the double bleach procedure::

5) Who thinks up this shit?
Just sayin'.

Okay, I think I've squeezed the most out of this orifice visit. I'll just leave you with this bit of asshole whimsy:
Does this hurricane make my ass look big? Saith an unnamed, former FEMA Director

P.S. Thanks everyone, for the Happy Birthday wishes. The celebration was a lowkey event, which included a dinner of take-out Mexican, in my jammies. (And my very own container of Guacamole!). Later, I enjoyed lovely Pinot Grigio.

P.P.S. We are currently under a Lake Effect snow advisory, which means a possible snow day tomorrow. To enhance the probability of having an undeserved day off, I must now take my leave of this station, to perform a ritualistic snow dance in the back yard, wearing nothing but Uggs. Think snowy thoughts.


••• Monday, November 14, 2005

Having My Cake 

Your Birthdate: November 14

You work well with others. That is, you're good at getting them to do work for you.
It's true that you get by on your charm. But so what? You make people happy!
You're dynamic, clever, and funny. And people like to have you around.
But you're so restless, they better not expect you to stay around for long.

Your strength: Your superstar charisma

Your weakness: Commitment means nothing to you

Your power color: Fuchsia

Your power symbol: Diamond

Your power month: May
What Does Your Birth Date Mean?

I'm 47. And this time, I really mean it.
(Last year, I miscalculated. Stone cold sober).

But now I am off to work. Late.
Birthday MEME courtesy of Rabbitch.

Oh Yeah, Uncle P00t's farewell gig was pretty cool. And Yeah, I know I overused that cool word yesterday, by about 3 times. How un. I'd love to talk but I gotta run.


••• Sunday, November 13, 2005

I'll Take WTF for 500, Alex. 

My daughter is either going to be the next Steven Spielberg, or Hannibal Lecter.

I came upon this scene, yesterday afternoon. She said it was a party. I didn't ask what was being served.

And poor Ken. Who knew that Mattel's best kept secret was Ken's family history being positive for male pattern hair head loss?

A few weeks ago, when Ken's condition was in the Pez-Dispenser phase, Cakers showed me the injury, without apparent concern. When I commented that Ken was not looking well, she used her finger to bob his head and said, "It's okay, Momma. Because now he can say 'yes.'"

I'll Take Tennis Balls Upside the Head for 200
For the past 10 days, or so, my life has felt like the unwitting target of a perpetual-service tennis ball machine. Doink. Doink.

First off, we had back-to-back family gatherings last weekend. Saturday, doink, and Sunday. Doink.

Then, there were two late nights at work, via the Parent/Teacher conferences. Doink.

After the last late night at work, I returned home to an empty house (husband took Cakers to see a live performance of Dragon Tales). So I put on my jammies, picked up my knitting and sat on the couch to play "Let's pretend to live alone." 15 minutes into this wild fantasy adventure, along comes the son, home from college. Wholly unexpected. Doink.

With a bag of laundry. Doink.
A big bag. Doink. Doink.....
And a greeting.
And a query: "Is there anything to eat?" Doink.

Friday: I come home from work and am pleasantly surprised to be greeted by my brother, who is in town from San Francisco. I am happy to see him. He's staying for dinner.

My brother is in town to attend a wake for our dearly, nearly departed Uncle P00t. Who resides in the state of Wyoming. Yeah. That's what I said. Nearly departed. As in: Uncle P00t lives. (I absolutely did not almost Doink that last one. Would be way wrong.)

The wake is later today, in a small town Up North. We're supposed to bring a dish to past. Doink. And cash. For the funeral fund. We're currently under High Wind Warnings. 50-60 mph gusts, are predicted. Gulp. Doink. ::I just asked my husband how fast the wind is blowing. Before he could answer, the Cakers says "Way, totally fast!" Each word punctuated with a knowing nod.::

It will be nice to see cousins, and such. Someday, I might tell some tales on this family of mine. And my childhood visits to a small, edgy town, in Northern Michigan. But not now.

Blocking on The Daily Trouble Double
For weekends, now, I've had intentions of blocking that Vogue cardie. Yesterday, between a cut and color appointment, laundry and another surprise visit from a brother, I got on it.

Like my cool blocking board? A while back, Juno mentioned finding these cool, puzzle-like floor pads at Tuesday Morning. Dirt cheap (9 bux?)and make a wonderful blocking board. The really cool thing is that you can make it square or oblong. Bigger or smaller.

Needless to say, I was relieved to finally get going on this. I was muchly disappointed, however, that mid-block, I ran out of pins. Doink. I have a box of t-pins somewhere, and ripped through drawers and bags and bins in search, without success. Doink. So I decided to just go with it, and block what I could. Only to find, the spray bottle was broken. Doink. And my bought-for-blocking steam iron had been sent off to college, early fall. Doink.

Maybe next week. I gotta get to a funeral. And start praying for the wind gusts to be at our back. (Our family vehicle is a large SUV. Yes I hate it. Seldom drive it. And in the wind, on the highway, it's like riding in a box kite. I'm scared, Wilbur.)

Never date a tennis player. To them, love means nothing. Jack Handey
Mom. I just CAN'T stop dancing.-The Cakers, yesterday. As she danced in her princess dress.


••• Wednesday, November 09, 2005

I Just Called.... 

To say,
I lab you.

Not that we need any more falling ass around here, but Stevie Wonders how long before that pathetic butt shot goes south.

Bella can only hide, in mortification. ::I think she thinks we can't see her.::

Hump Day Slump
This has been a hellish week. With no end in sight. Well, the week will end. Of course. But The Hellish, it will go on. I can't go into all that right now. I'm only posting at this time, so as to take my ass off the front page.

My nephew left this afternoon, with his new thinking cap in tow. Godspeed, sweetie.

Little Testies
Yesterday, I registered to take my licensing exam. ::gasp:: I'm shooting for the end of January, with the Testies-to-the-Wall studying, to commence immediately after Thanksgiving. Or Christmas.

Even though I haven't started hard-core studying, I have been perusing some of my test review materials. Following is a sample of the hell which lies before me. It's a word for word practice test question from my $300 study packet.
25. The primary symptoms of a patient's mental disorder are markedly diminished when she sleeps at night. Most likely, the patient has:
A. enuresis
B. major depression
C. Panic disorder
D. Tourette's disorder
Swear to Freud.
Needless to say, I got this one wrong.


••• Sunday, November 06, 2005

Wreakend Havoc 

Okay. I started this post last Thursday. Then I updated it on Friday, with new information. But when I saved the update, I somehow brainfarted it into pixel dust. Then I mostly rewrote it. And Blogger ate it.

And now, it's 9:00 Sunday night, at the close of a fairly suckass weekend. And at 10pm, I have a date with a cat and a couch and some Gray's Anatomy. Which means, at 10:00, I hit publish, no matter what I got. Serious. Ain't even dinkin'.

Lucky My Ass
You may remember my recent, lame-assed lament about how my jeans no longer fit? Well, last week, a friend happened to mention that she found the best jeans ever, for middle-age afflictions of the flesh. Lucky Brand Easy Riders. Because I had no time to, or interest in, going to the mall (and what would I wear, anyway?) I searched online and found a good, Lucky deal here.

I Lurve Them.
See for yourself. No more Credit Card Swiper Ass for me. (CCSA is Camel Toe of the Ass.)

These jeans remind me much of the boy's Levi's I wore all through high school. Nice and comfy, loose and tight in all the right places.

::How am I doing on time? Hmmmm....9:36. Not so good.::
Keystone Caps
Last spring I wrote about my nephew, who had gotten himself into some real deep and real stinky legal doo. Well, after seven months of much emotional and mental and legal angst, he's leaving the country to attend a residential treatment program for adolescents with B1-p0lar dis0rder.

My nephew is a brilliant, eclectic, artsy young man, and is almost always donning a knit cap of some kind. So, to commemorate this huge, scary and hopefully life altering journey, I decided to make him a cap. To help keep his thoughts in order.

Here's the picture I was going to post Thursday night, on my progress to boot. The yarn is Mission Falls 1824 wool. The pattern is a bastardization of Stacey Joy's Marsan Watchcap. (I'm leaving off the cuff, since he's going to tropical climes.)

::Okay, it's 9:49. It's gonna get wacky....Just sayin'::

So, it seemed to be going well. I was just knitting away, whilst sipping on Chambord martinis and wondering if I should fetch my row counter from my husband's car. Nah. Says I. How hard can it be to count rows of ribbing? I says. Followed with damn, my husband shakes a fine tini. Now, where was I? ::9:58. shit::

So, what's the toll for a night on the couch with boozin' and knittin' and good intentions?

Cakers got a brand new hat. My little Beat Chick.

::It's 9:59. I'm posting. No checkie the typo....no obsessing the boo-boo...I can't believe I'm really doing this...it's fun!::

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••• Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Dog Days of October 

There she is. My Princess Cakes. Wearing a beautiful, store-bought Halloween costume, and a leftover Birthday crown. (The girl can milk a birthday, I'm tellin' ya.)

When I was growing up, my mom would have preferred death, over being caught doing the following: 1) Going out in public with rollers in her hair. 2) Allowing her offspring to wear store bought Halloween costumes.

Item #1 didn’t affect me too much, except that my mom seemed to yell a lot more, when she had the gray brush rollers in her hair*, and what with her refusing to leave the house and all, we were pretty much sittin’ ducks. But I digress.

*I always assumed that had something to do with the pink picks, which appeared to poke directly through the roller and into the scalp of her head. When I was very young, I thought that the rollers were literally pinned to her head. And for awhile there, my mom was both the bravest and scariest woman in the world.

Item #2. My mother was a most excellent seamstress, and creative to boot, which translated into some pretty cool Halloween costumes, over the years. Some of my favorites were Raggedy Anne, gypsy, ballerina, and a hobo.

My most memorable Halloween costume, however, was a dog. It was a one piece dealie, with a hood-like headpiece, floppy ears and detachable mitts. The fabric my mom used was the color of oatmeal, with the look of fleece, and the feel of car upholstery. It was stiff and stuffy, with no ventilation. Damn near bullet-proof.

Back in the glory days of Urban Education, everybody went home for lunch, even those of us who lived six to twelve blocks from the school. This meant, on Halloween, that we had 35 minutes to walk home, eat lunch, get costumed and walk back to school. On time.

So, it’s Halloween, in the year of the dog, and I’m home for lunch, to eat and get dressed. After wolfing down a sandwich, I put on my dog suit for the very first time, and decide that, despite the texture of the fabric, it's really a great costume.

As I head out the door, mom makes a last minute determination that the oatmeal is a bit bland, and commences to paint spots on my backside, with liquid shoe polish. Aubergine.

I really didn't want to be late for school, on one of the biggest days of the year, so I tell my mom that I really have to go.

"I'll walk with you, and finish up," she said, as she poked a knife into the spongetip applicator, to enhance flow mojo. We had only walked for five minutes, before she announced that I was officially polished off. ::Obviously, she’s not wearing curlers on this day. 'Cause, you know, she'd sooner be caught dead. But hobbling down the sidewalk, in broad daylight, whilst painting her daughter-in-a-dog-suit, with a bottle of shoe polish? Triflin'. ::

Before she turned back for the house, my mom promised me that the polish would dry by the time I got to school. What she didn’t tell me, was that the well-doused areas would blotch and run, like blood from a gunshot wound. ::I’ll never forget Steve "Dimbulb" Dunski asking, in all sincerity, if I was supposed to be a dog who got hit by a car. Yeah. That new Saturday morning cartoon character, Dead Dog Walking.::

Okay. That costume was definitely a dog. But even the best costumes made with love, by my mother, could not satisfy my most wicked, repugnant, secret Halloween longing: The Snow White costume set from Cook’s 5 &10. Mask included.

And this wasn't just any ol' cheap, plastic-ass mask. This was one of those milky, opaque things, with light pink cheeks and ruby red lips. The mask was it. Who cares that Snow White’s “dress” was actually a one piece pant suit, with a dress and apron painted onto the front? Not I, said the dwarf.

I wanted that Mask since third grade, when Robin McNeely (the only third grader in the history of the world, to own a pair of red, patent leather go-go boots.) wore it to the school halloween party.

And when she agreed to let us all have a turn to try it on, I was first in line. How I loved the feel of the plastic, pressing on my cheeks. And the strange, crunchy noise that my eyelashes made, as they crashed around the eyehole. Then there was the sweat. And the smell...But my very most favorite part, was sticking the tip of my tongue out the mouth slit, and making everybody go “eww.”

In retrospect, of course, I realize that my mother's creations were spectacular. And that I was very lucky. I sometimes feel a little guilty not making The Cakers something from scratch, for Halloween. But truth be, I don't think she really cares.

In fact, she's already put her order in for next year's Halloween shtick. Snow White. I couldn't mask my joy if I tried.