January 2007

Yesterday morning, the following words were spoken, “No, that is not a blizzard. That is merely a snow burp. And no, the university never closes for anything!”

Famous last words.

Because by mid-afternoon, everyone got an email that school was suspended for the rest of the day because of this –

outside building

Outside our office. Piles of snow. Lots of snow. There was also this piece of news

ERIE, Pennsylvania (AP) — About 50 vehicles — including an ambulance carrying patients — piled up in a chain-reaction crash on a snowy interstate Thursday, killing one person, officials said.

So I trudge home in the snow. Ahhhh….snow. So white, so fluffly, so light and airy and fun. What they don’t tell you is that when it snows this much and the roads don’t get plowed right away, snow very quickly turns into an icky, muddy, slippery pile of slush. Also, wind chill sucks. Anyway, I come home to a freezing apartment. Turns out the heat is out at our apartment building. Lovely. Also uh-oh.


That outfit is pretty much what I wore to bed. At least, the handknits are getting a lot of wear. I did manage to take my shoes off long enough to snap a picture of my latest project –


The beginnings of Conwy socks from Nancy Bush’ Knitting on the Road. On Louet Gems Opal in a super bright shade of hot pink. Because I’m already dreaming of spring.

  • Sign that adulthood may have caught up to me:


Yep. A couch. I got tired of sitting on the floor. I like it – it’s comfy, has storage underneath, unfolds into a bed, and was purchased painlessly. A colleague of mine was nice enough to volunteer her husband and their truck so we could bring it home.

  • Sign that my dad is cooler than I am – excerpt from yesterday’s phone conversation. Chinese in italics:

Dad: HALLO? HALLO? Jen! This is your FATHER!

Me: Hi Dad. No need to yell, I can hear you fine.

Dad: Oh good. Guess where I am calling from?

Me: Where dad?

Dad: From my cellphone! Why don’t you become more modern and get one for yourself too?

Me: Modern? You don’t even know how to use email!

Dad: No, but your uncle E does. He got himself a laptop. He practices using the internet everyday. Do you have a laptop?

Me: No, but I have a desktop.

Dad: No laptop? Be more modern and get yourself a laptop too!

Me: Have more pressing needs than a laptop right now.

Dad: You have all this education – you should be more modern. You don’t want to be a loser!

Me: <blink, blink> Sigh.

  • Sign that the cosmos thinks I am a loser: dropping my keys in the toilet, then getting locked in said toilet stall. I had to inflict harm on the locking thing to get out. Sometimes I think I exist to amuse the gods. Oh, and you guys too.
  • Sign that I am a hopeless fangirl:

absolute sandman

There was squeeing when I saw this at the local bookstore the other day. The words, “My preciousssss…” may or may not have been uttered. I’m a huge fan of Neil Gaiman’s work, so I was excited to see this. The hefty book is actually a compilation of the Sandman comic book series, the first of four volumes. Damn these people for making me want to shell out more money times four! It’s a bit spendy so some penny saving is in order.

  • Sign that I managed to unearth my knitting mojo:

stripey socks

Pattern: your basic toe-up socks with short row heels
Yarn: Regia Crazy Color DK #5400, 2 balls, size 2 DPNS over 52 stitches

These socks were done using the magic cast on, and Amy’s patient tutelage. They fit great, and I really like the colors in the striping. The heels leave a lot to be desired, as they came out holey-er than I’d like. See?

holey heels

The second sock was a bit better, but not great. Somehow, when I wrap and turn for the short rows, my tension goes out the window. Nonetheless, I’ll be using short row heels in the future. I did have to undo the bind off edge three times because my poor brain couldn’t process “bind off loosely.” In desperation, I had to bind off using a size 8 DPN. Hey, it worked.

Down with walking pneumonia. It has been quite a sniffle-hacking cough-fest the past few days. Damn you cold, rainy gloom. Unfortunately, the work show must go on, so I really haven’t been able to just rest up. Whatever energy I have left has been spent doing this –


so I could turn this –


into this. There’s another one of those on the other side of the TV.


Turns out I can follow instructions (relatively speaking). Whatever didn’t fit together got a good whack and superglue reinforcement.

On another note, remember the not-so-secret purple project? Well, I finally finished them! Here’s a picture from Okee, who’s great to knit for because he makes the appropriate grateful and appreciative noises. And he actually wears/uses the hand-knits!


Pattern: purple-icious Rib and Cable socks by Nancy Bush in IK Fall 2005.
Yarn: Louet Opal in Violet 2453, a vibrant purple, almost exactly 2 balls. Size 2 DPNS.

I cast on 10 more stitches than the pattern called for because, hi! Plus-sized feet. Also continued the rib and cable pattern down the heel. The pattern has a nifty toe treatment which resulted in not-so-pointy toes. Yay! The yarn was really nice to work with, pretty soft and knitted up to a dense fabric. And it’s superwash too.  I’d use this yarn again.  Maybe a sweater?  Hmmm…..

I live in a converted hockey puck factory. It’s actually pretty cool looking, with exposed beams and old creaky floors. Here it is from the outside –


And here it is from the inside. This was taken a couple of days ago, when my stuff hadn’t gotten here yet. Look at all that space!


That side of the room still looks pretty much the same. The other side of the room is now a chaotic sea of boxes, because my stuff finally made it off the moving truck.

The good – most of my worldly possessions (really mainly my computer and books) made it to Erie relatively intact.

The bad and the ugly – ahhh, where do I start? Should I begin with the part where the moving company tried to charge me extra (a lot of extra) during pick-up in Houston because I had 5 more boxes than their inventory list said? Or how about the fact that they dropped off my stuff at 10 freaking 30 at night, in icy, cold rain? Or that I had to threaten to call the cops on them so they would start unloading? You know, because I didn’t want to pony up two hundred extra dollars because of the “long distance from the unloading area to your apartment.” Or the fact that many of my boxes came off the truck looking like this –

crushed crushed too

Serious party-ers, my boxes. Some of my stuff seemed to have been tampered with too, because things that I’m pretty sure I packed together ended up in separate boxes. With strategic holes in them too (the boxes, I mean).

With the unpacking and work starting in earnest (I had my first “what the hell have I gotten myself into” moment today), there has not been a lot of time for knitting. This is the stripey socks progress so far –

sock progress

Pitiful progress huh? At least I have small feet.

Howdy!  Just a quick post to let you guys know that I have landed in Erie.  Picture-free for now because I seem to have misplaced my camera cable. 

So far…

  • the weather has been mild (relatively speaking).  Knock on wood.
  • I have only managed to get lost, well, most of the time, if you must know the truth.
  • my worldly possessions are still on a truck somewhere in the Midwest.  Remind me to tell you later about my semi-shady mover story.
  • I managed to get stuck in the elevator at work.  For half an hour.  There was cursing like you wouldn’t believe.  Quit laughing.