30 November 2008

the Math of the Moment: in prose

Thanksgiving was awesome.

Wednesday, I spent a good chunk of time playing music with San, which was great. I really rely on other people to make me bust out the instruments and actually play music. I'm so fortunate to know so many musically-inclined people. Also, San is really cool for putting up with my gradual shift away from songs in Rise Up Singing and towards R.E.M. and the Cure. The new strings are fun and jangly; and they've been on my guitar long enough that it stays in tune now. Also realized that I need to play the mandolin more. (I had to look up all of the chords.)

Wednesday also marked the beginning of the serious knitting progress. I worked on the body and an arm of Blaze while I watched 2 episodes of the X Files (4-D and Badlaa), South Park (Lice Capades) and Firefly (Ariel). By 4:30 in the morning, I was starting the yoke!

Thursday I woke up obnoxiously late (see above paragraph), and went to Thanksgiving dinner at the Andrews', who I know from church. They're moving to Kendal (local retirement community) sometime in January, so it was the last Thanksgiving dinner at their house. Some of their family was over, including an adorable 2 year old named Timothy. Dinner was nice.

Around 6, I went over to Holly's. Holly works at the yarn store in town, and I know her from knitting circle. I arrived just after they had finished eating dinner. Holly and couple of the other guests went on a short walk, and Cory and I sat around and knit. Cory was about an inch above the heel of her second Gentleman's Fancy Sock. Size 0 needles. Teeny. Not long after Holly, John and Elsa returned, these two other guys from town (also Oberlin alums, I think), stopped by. We played Yahtzee (there are too many people who seem to have never played this game, which makes no sense to me at all), and drank wine. We played the game where you tell three things about yourself and only one of them is true (and everyone guesses which one). We drank more wine. There was a really good Shiraz that Holly had us guess the price of. Our guesses ranged from $9.98 - $25. Turns out it cost $3.39 at IGA. We ate pie. And more turkey and stuffing. And drank more wine. Cory and I left around 12:45. She had turned the entire heel of the sock by that point. I was a couple of inches into the yoke of Blaze. I walked with her to Firelands, and she fed a friend's fish.

Friday, Cory came over around 11:30 to work on a paper. She was far more productive than I. Around 2:30 we went to the bead store on our way to knitting circle. We split a sandwich at Subway, and spent a good chunk of time knitting at Smith's. Then Holly said, "So, here's what I'm thinking of doing this evening: I'm going to go home, take a nap, and then wake up and knit and eat leftover and watch junk television. You two [Cory and I] are more than welcome to join me." So we did. More progress on socks and Blaze. Got to see Fisher (Holly's cat) again, who has the most beautiful green eyes. Drooled over Cory's copy of the Winter Interweave Knits. I really want to make the Woven Bands Pullover. (I can afford two skeins of Cascade Ecological Wool, right?) Watched the end of Star Wars: Episode IV, House and Forensic Files. Left at 2:30 a.m.

Saturday, I don't really know. I'm sure I got nothing important done. I walked to IGA and got dumpling ingredients (potato and meat dumplings!). Got a burrito at Agave. Cory came over and we watched the X Files (Field Trip and Improbable) and listened to the latest Stash and Burn podcast while Cory finished her sock (which fits like a glove, except not like a glove at all. Fits like sock. In silly accent). When I say listen, I actually mean that we listened for about 10 minutes, and then started our own conversation on top of Jenny and Nicole. Really, it's better that way. I have a hard time with all of the IK bashing that happens every time a new issues comes out.

Oh, wait. Saturday afternoon, I watched the first half of Pride and Prejudice. I watched the second half after Cory left. I went to bed at 6:30 a.m., but had Blaze totally off the needles. Worth it. Also made a chart for the illusion part of the Dark Mark Armwarmer.

Sunday. Woke up late. Took nap. Ate some cereal. Worked on armwarmer pattern. Did not make dumplings. Did not read Река Потудань. Did not do laundry. DID do underarm bind-offs on Blaze. (Only ends to weave in now.) Did poke around on Ravelry. Did greet returning housemates. Did get another burrito from Agave. Also: blogged!

Well. That's about it. I'm leading my Russian class on Tuesday, and I'm hoping that I won't spend Tuesday morning gnawing my hands off as an expression of nerves. All in all, it's been a good weekend. And I TOTALLY will have a new sweater to wear this week. Heck, I bet by this weekend, I could have some more socks...

the Math of the Moment

My Thanksgiving break =

2 hours of folk songs with San + 13 hours at Holly's + 7 bottles of wine + 4 episodes of Forensic files + 4 episodes of the X Files + 1 episode South Park + 1 episode Firefly + 300 minutes of Pride and Prejudice + 1 trip to IGA + 0 dumplings + 2 burritos at Agave + 7 ends to weave in on Blaze + 3 days in a row of knitting with Cory.

16 November 2008

Ladies and Gentlemen and nongenderspecific good people: the OB-52s!

So my dad and his friend Ed have this church they made up (the Church of Ed and Dave) and the two sacraments are record shopping and live music. Now, I admit that since high school I have seriously been a disappointment on the record shopping front, BUT.

Tonight. Was. Awesome.

For those of you who don't live in my house and have not heard the B-52s on repeat for the last two months, my housemate Linden and I are both part of a B-52s cover band that started up this year. Well, friends, we just played our first show, and it was a BLAST.

I know my education is worth a hell of a lot and is doing me a lot of good, in the way that I need to eat my vegetables (in that it/they is/are good for me and enjoyable at the same time), and I'm trying to make this not sound like a livejournal post by quoting song lyrics, BUT.

In Bruce Springsteen's "No Surrender", there is the following lines: "Well we busted out of class / Had to get away from those fools / We learned more from a three minute record, baby / Than we ever learned in school."

I don't really have the capacity to explain it well at this moment, but this is one of those lyrics that really resonates with me. This band has been one of those things that is technically not related to my degree or what we (my parents) are paying Oberlin for, but it is one of the best and most valuable experiences I'm having.

It has been a great evening. To those of you who came to the Keep party, THANK YOU for your support. It was fantastic to see you. If you didn't come, and you're reading this blog, there's a high chance you live in Minnesota and/or are my dad. In which case, it snowed in Oberlin early this evening (around dinnertime) and I thought of you (you being Minnesotans in general), whenever I wasn't pretending I was in Russia.

So remember those orange and green socks I was making in Pace? (If not, I haven't really worked on them much between this week and Petersburg. Anyway, there's an orange sock with a green heel & toe and the matching sock is the opposite and I'm knitting both of them at the same time.) Anywho, I turned the orange heel today. I'm really digging this toe-up sock thing. Seriously. Not picking up stitches along the heel flap? Call me a convert.

Blaze is about two or three inches from the sleeve/body join. It should be done before November's out, for sure. Maybe I'll shoot for wearing it on Thanksgiving.

06 November 2008

Two-Tone Cables & Ribs

New hat pattern, fresh off the reverse-engineering track. Don't worry; the copyright (OH NO! I just said copyright!) is mine. I made it about two years ago, and winged the pattern. Worked out well, and is one of my favorite hats. I'll get back to you on gauge when I feel like taking out my measuring tape. I poked around on Ravelry to find approximately what size needles might use 72 sts to get an adult size hat and I might also have owned a 16" circular for at the time. My best guess is US 10.5. I probably did the decreases on 9s or 10s. (Didn't have 10.5 dpns.) Not that it probably concerns you, since this about the pattern and not the yarn, after all, but the third picture, while it doesn't show the pattern detail well, is the best depiction of the hat's color.

- 16" circular, most likely US 10.5
- dpns in a similar size (anywhere from 9-11 should be fine)
- 2 skeins (different colors) Patons Shetland Chunky, which in case you didn't notice, is only 25% wool. I did not notice this when I purchased it. It's soft, though. The cream (CC) is called "Biscuit" the blue (MC) had the word "Sea" in the name.
- cable needle is helpful
- aaaaaand get out that tapestry needle

will appear in this space later

C2F: place next 2 sts on cable needle and let rest at front of work. K2 from left needle. K2 from cable needle.
C2Fd: place next 2 sts on cable needle and let rest at front of work. K2tog from left needle. K2 from cable needle.

With CC, CO 72 sts.
Joining in round, work foll 2 rnds 10x:
Rnd 1: *k4, p1, k3, p1*
Rnd 2: *k1, p2, k1, p1, k3, p1*

Change to MC,
Next rnd: *k4, p1, k3, p1*

Work foll 4 rnds 5x:
Row 1: *k4, p1, k1, p1, k1, p1*
Row 2: *k4, p1, k3, p1*
Row 3: *k4, p1, k1, p1, k1, p1*
Row 4: *C2F, p1, k3, p1*

Decreasing for crown
Row 1: *k4, p1, k1, p1, k1, p1*
Row 2: *k4, p1, sl1, k2tog, psso, p1* (56 sts)
Row 3: *k4, p1, k1, p1*
Row 4: *C2Fd, p1, k1, p1* (48 sts)
Row 5: *k3, p1, k1, p1*
Row 6: *k1, k2tog, p1, k1, p1* (40 sts)
Row 7: *k1, p1, k1, p1*
Row 8: *k2tog, p1, k1, p1* (32 sts)
Row 9: *k1, p2tog, p1* (24 sts)
Row 10: *k2tog, p1* (16 sts)
Row 11: *k2tog* (8 sts)

Cut yarn, thread through rem. 8 sts and pull tight. Weave in ends. Adorn head.