Saturday, October 11, 2008

The low hanging fruit

It is common practice at the local yarn shop to come in, sit in the sunroom, and knit, regardless of whether or not you plan to make a purchase that day. Today, I proved that there is good business sense to that policy. I intended to just knit today, but as soon as I was in the door, Burla points me at the wall of Cascade wool that came in yesterday, another wall of Manos, and the Manos silk. The silk was fantastically tempting, but I managed to refrain from all of this. Instead, I found something that I managed to miss over the summer, I'm guessing. Take a look.


This is Zitron Trekking Hand Art in the Feuerland (tierra del fuego) colorway. I am not a person that really gets struck by beauty often. People show me patterns and say "Isn't this pretty?" and I nod, because I don't know any better. Seeing this in the skein, the word gorgeous came to mind. I took it down, and then actually put it back up. I told myself that I didn't need any more yarn, that I want to start a sweater, that I should save my money. I went back to my knitting, and the longer I stayed, the more I couldn't live without this yarn. And now that it's home with me, I have no idea what I'm going to do with it.

As of last weekend, I had made it down to two WIPs, having finished my Lovikka mittens --except for felting and embroidery-- and the teddy bear --except for sewing in ends, blocking, seaming, and filling it-- so I started another project. Another pair of socks. See below.


I'm calling them my Wye Oak Socks (because the colors are similar to the album art of the band with the same name). This is my first project that involves yarn overs, which by itself isn't terribly exciting, but it does open up all new pathways. I would certainly like to try lace knitting at some point. Right now, I still very much knit for myself, and lace knitting doesn't really produce any manly wears. Until I find a more feminine person who would really appreciate it or a more manly lace pattern, lace knitting will just stay on hold.

And John Darnielle released yet another EP! He's calling this one "Satanic Messiah" and you can get it from the link below. Feel free to donate a few bucks for the songs, but don't feel obligated. That comes straight from the man himself. It is really fantastic though. I'd definitely have paid for it if I had to.

The Mountain Goats - Satanic Messiah EP

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

To get it right

Remember that post I made a while back about being inspired by the article that John Roderick wrote about beards? Well that night was the last time I shaved. I am totally giving this beard thing a go. I'll post a picture of how it is going at some point. It looks fine so far, and not shaving is definitely a plus. I'll see what happens when I have to get around to trimming it though.

I started another new goal last week. I decided that I was going to try to do the hundred push-up challenge over at The goal is to be able to do 100 consecutive push-ups after doing the six week training program. I started last Wednesday, was sore Thursday but still went to softball practice, and then ended up staying sore through most of the weekend. This week has just been crazy busy, and I've mostly just been using the downtime to relax. I think I'll try to get back into it tonight. Also, I never realized how much push-ups work your abs!

Knitting has finally progressed a bit. I finished the Salto socks from Knitty! This means I'm down to 4 projects on needles. I've got a second sock, a second mitten, a scarf, and two small teddy bear pieces still. I've decided that I'm going to refrain from starting any new projects until the beginning of November. I'm going to use my birthday powers to request a gift certificate from Fiberphilia, my local yarn shop, and get started on my first ever sweater. The plan is to do something from Elizabeth Zimmerman's book Knitting Without Tears, maybe something tweedy. I'm sure I'll do some consulting with Michelle, the LYS owner, and we'll figure out something grand.

Music music music. Oh man. New track from Frontier Ruckus. New album from Mason Proper. Bound Stems album from Kevin. And currently on my ears is the latest album from Alias, who I saw open for Why? the other week. Alias is Brendon Whitney, producer and rapper, and a native Mainer. I'd enjoy his music no matter what, but I especially hold local musicians in high regard. That brings my list of Maine musicians that I know and enjoy up to three: Alias, Nat Baldwin, and Ray LaMontagne. I'm going to have to talk to some people at the radio station (I have a show! Did I tell you? 91.9 WMEB FM Orono Mondays from 10 to noon) and see what they can tell me about local music. As for non-local music, I'm going with a friend to see Minnesota singer/songwriter Mason Jennings in Boston this weekend. Should be good times.

Now that was a lot of words, so here's a picture --even though it is recycled from a previous post.