Friday, May 30, 2008


Things are going pretty well for Mr. Vincenzo. The wound is beginning to close and didn't seem to pain him when I cleaned it and put more Neosporin on it; he still isn't using his hind legs, but he doesn't seem to be bothered by the handicap. The hole in his shell should mend over time, too, but I don't think it's a good idea to just let him go and get caught by another dog after he's back to normal. Mom wants to keep him as a house pet. I'm not really sure about it. He's a wild animal and he survived without help up until the neighbor's dog caught him. But now that he's on the mend, I'm reluctant to just let him go be mauled by another dog. It's a difficult decision. Mom teases me and hums the melody from "I've Grown Accustomed To Her Face" when I try to puzzle it out.
I never thought I'd say this about something not covered with fur, but turtles are actually kind of cute, especially when they yawn. Vincenzo got to go outside again today for some sun and, sometime during the day, he consumed half a strawberry and some pieces of hardboiled egg. This may not sound like strenuous activity, but I don't suppose many people would feel like eating a cheeseburger and fries after being mauled by a tiger. After eating all that food, he Y A W N E D, and then sort of smacked his lips. And then he did it twice more; all three times made me chuckle. So, without further fussing over the cuteness of turtles, here are pictures of our crotchety house guest. He was most offended when Mom put the camera close to his face for the mugshot... but it could just be that he always looks that way.

Muffin Fiend

The sock, which started out so well, doesn't fit. I'm slightly distressed, though I shouldn't be considering the gauge was smaller than it should have been and I should have paid more attention to it before I started. The next attempt will be on bigger needles; the yarn will be the same. And hopefully I'll get it right this time! Part of my problem is that I knit tightly, which makes my gauge smaller. Now that I know what the problems are and how to do things like short row heels, I should be able to get through it without any other hitches. The finished one will be a trophy sock, I guess, 'cause I don't know anyone who wears a narrow size 8 shoe. Mmph.
And now, because I kinda-sorta failed at one thing, I'm making up for it by flashing pictures of muffins. See recipe below. Since we don't have any fresh fruit in the house, I used dried bing cherries, but other stuff would work just fine.

Cherry Muffins:
2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup plus about three tablespoons soy milk
2 eggs
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup dried bing cherries, roughly chopped (or a little more, if you want)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Whisk milk, eggs, and oil; sift dry ingredients together in a separate bowl. Mix wet ingredients into dry and stir until mostly smooth; add the cherries and stir a little more--lumps are okay, according to The Joy Of Cooking. Oil the muffin tin and fill cavities about 3/4 of the way. Bake on middle oven rack for about 20 minutes. Makes about 10 muffins, depending on the size of the pan.

Thursday, May 29, 2008


Well, here's the first of the produce from our garden. Radishes. Lots of 'em. They're planted in the same row as some carrots; in the row next to them, there are peas and tomatoes and lettuces of several varieties. The garden is sort of scattered around the property: an old wheelbarrow converted into a planter holding herbs and more lettuces and cucumbers, two enormous black rubber things for potatoes, several raised beds with strawberries, asparagus, and rhubarb, and a bunch of other planters with pumpkin seedlings and so on. I'm really looking forward to the peas.
Mr. Vincenzo--named after the cranky newspaper editor from the television series The Night Stalker--is still alive. I called DNR today and left a message saying yes, I would like to speak to a conservation officer at the earliest convenience, but no, it isn't an emergency. This was after I called county animal control. County animal control does not, apparently, deal with wildlife, and the lady I spoke to suggested taking Mr. Vincenzo to a vet in Purcelville, VA. Vets--at least, some of them--do accept turtles as patients. Mr Vincenzo, however, having been so traumatized by his encounter with the neighbor's dog, will be remaining here for another day or so, or however long it takes for the local DNR people to call back. Eastern box turtles don't have any special status as far as conservation goes, but it's possible the folks at DNR will want to take him. I sort of hope not. I've gotten used to having him around.
I hoped he'd start using his hind legs, but they're still tucked up inside his shell and he's still getting around by using his forelegs to drag himself. I'm not sure the problem is that they don't work at all; he had them out this morning and promptly pulled them back in when I gave him a little chopped up broccoli and hardboiled egg--thank you, Katie, for the suggestion. We'll see what happens tomorrow.
Otherwise, I was able to watch another two episodes of Supernatural. I was a little disappointed that the boys didn't leave Gordon to the vampires, but I'm guessing this means he'll be popping up again at some point. I've known a couple people who are poisonous enough to wither potted plants simply by being in the same room with them... I'm pretty sure they're among the living, though. I hope. Ick.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


He's looking a bit better. Very alert and very much alive.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Intensive Care For Turtles

We don't see box turtles too often anymore, but when we do we generally scoop them up, take their pictures, then let them go in the garden. This morning while I was out with the dog--who happens to spend a good deal of time indoors and never goes outside without a human attached to her leash--I found a turtle in the driveway. The turtle has a big hole in the top of its shell and seems to be partially paralyzed; it's unable to extend its hind legs and locomotes by using its front ones to drag itself across the ground. I won't be posting pictures of the injuries, which are rather.. erm.. gruesome. I feel awful about it, though, and don't really know what to do other than put it in the garden and hope it either heals on its own or doesn't linger in pain.
I saw an article about a man who found a turtle in a similar situation, and his solution was to epoxy wheels to her shell so she could still move unimpeded. I'm not sure that's really... I'm not sure what to think, honestly.
I hope the neighbor's dog doesn't make a habit of this.

Addendum: On closer inspection, the hole doesn't seem to be life threatening. The bone of the carapace is showing through, but the wound to the flesh underneath, while obviously painful, might not be as serious as I thought. The problem, now, though, is that the ants have found it and are interested in making turtle soup. I'm seriously bothered by this.
Okay. Brought the turtle in the house, got rid of the ants, put some Neosporin on the wound, and have put it in a box with some newspaper, greenery, and some carrot shreds. Next step is to find out what box turtles eat and provide suitable sustenance... assuming I can find some earth worms or whatever.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Sock Snags

And I thought things were going so well! The first stage of the sock is finished, which means I've done the toes and foot without any hiccups; the heel, though, is another story. Even though I've done short rows before, I've never used the wrap-and-turn method. I admit it has me stumped. It feels like the heel flap gets longer and longer, but there aren't any actual decreases. Most of my previous sock projects were based on the basic top-down pattern in Charlene Schurch's Sensational Knitted Socks, which means that the heel flap is pretty simple: you knit to the middle of the heel flap, do your decreasing, turn the sock, purl back the other way, and so on until you get the short row shaping done and are left with a nice little cup-shaped bit which conforms to the curve of the heel.
Okay. That's peachy, but how do I apply this to the task at hand? I spent about half an hour this afternoon looking at Cat Bordhi videos on YouTube and reading various descriptions of how to do this wrap-and-turn business. And you know what? I still don't get it. I'm sure I'll figure it out eventually. I mean, if I can learn how to at least get a toe-up sock started--even something mildly ambitious like tabi--then surely I can figure out how to handle this heel thing.
In other, unrelated news, I've finally been able to sit down and start watching Season 2 of Supernatural. The weather, however, is conspiring against me... it's supposed to rain tomorrow, which means no one--ahem--will be out in the garden. I was able to watch the first two episodes in complete peace, and I think the season started out strong. I felt bad for the poor Reaper; if Piers Anthony is to be believed, such creatures are supposed to rule supreme in their bailiwicks.
I'll try to watch some more when the weather clears.
Oh... and that clown? That was just creepy.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Tabi Toes

I won't crow and say I'm being completely successful until I actually finish the first sock and am certain it fits properly. I will, however, share pictures of my progress thus far and say that I'm enjoying working with needles bigger than a size 1; after two pairs of socks on tiny little toothpicks, I vowed never to use needles that small ever again. Size 2, though, feels comfortable enough for me to work with relative speed and ease.
As you can see, the first picture shows the finished toes. Those were a challenge, to be sure, which meant I had to learn some new tricks, like the provisional cast-on. Rachael, I can't thank you enough for that detailed description. I also had to learn how to do a three-needle bind-off. This was the lesser of the two evils, I thought, though it was kind of tricky keeping the stitches from sliding off the needles when I got to the point where there were only two or three left.
As usual, I've made things more complicated. It is, I've discovered, utterly impossible to do an isolated panel of colorwork when you're knitting in the round. I still want to add something to the instep and leg, which means I'll have to break down and learn to do duplicate stitch and just embroider the leaves after the entire sock is finished. We'll see, though. I may leave them the way they are and skip the intarsia altogether. And, yes, I do plan to ignore the no socks with sandals rule and wear these with my flip-flops since I don't actually have a pair of geta. This is, after all, their intended purpose. :P

Friday, May 23, 2008

Bees A-buzzin'

I hate carpenter bees! If you live in a log house or are moving into one, I strongly suggest you consider treating the wood with some sort of something; I speak from experience. We've lived in a log house for about 20 years and every spring there's quite a hoo-hah when the carpenter bees start coming around.
According to a number of sources, these guys are important for pollination, but they have a bad habit of making nuisances of themselves. If you've got one of those redwood swingsets for your kids, consider it a nice home for the bees, 'cause your kids aren't going to want to play on it while the bees are out and about. These sources also say that while carpenter bees are classified as a pest, they're not likely to do any severe structural damage unless they're left for successive--and numerous--generations; and contrary to what one might think, they don't actually eat wood. They just chew it up and spit it out in the form of extremely fine sawdust. So the problem, then, is that your house slowly begins to resemble an oversized, wooden Swiss cheese.
Today, mom decided it was time to start filling in the burrows. The MO was plastic wood a la Minwax.
Well, says I, what we really should do is measure the diameter of the burrows, head out to Lowe's, and buy some dowels, and use small pieces to fill in the holes.
Well, says mom, the bits of dowel will be visible and people will notice them when they come to the house--like the plastic wood won't be visible, right?
All right, says I, and into the house I go to get a knife and the jar of plastic wood to start working on the burrows.
Well, its three hours later and the bees have not only continued about their business, but they've begun clearing out the plastic wood so they can move back into their little houses. I called dad to tell him what happened and he said, "Did you spray the holes with insecticide before you filled them in?"
Well, gee, no we didn't. This, apparently, is what you're supposed to do for a more topical approach to the problem; it's also one alternative to painting your house with insecticidal wood preserver. And hope the woodpeckers discover the impromptu mid-morning snack... and don't decide to return at dawn to start hammering on the downspout.

And, just for kicks--and because Rachael's cool and she's doing it--I'm going to take another stab at knitting toe up socks. Thank you so much for your detailed explanation of provisional casting on; it's much easier than the figure eight cast on I tried before. :)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Dept. Of Tourism

Tourists are a fact of life for small town America. If you live in a small town, they inevitably find you because they read a story in the Washington Post or New York times about the bucolic setting, quaint B&Bs, and fine dining. They do not, however, bother to do their homework before setting out. This can result in rather amusing situations.
Today, on my way home from the post office, I came upon a carload--nay, SUV-load--of tourists from Virginia. These poor unfortunates were sitting at the stop sign at the corner of my street, pouring over a map and looking belwildered. I stopped, rolled down the window and mouthed "Are you lost?"
The driver was wary and only rolled her window down about a quarter of the way before saying, "We're looking for Antietam Battlefield...?"
"Oh?" I replied. "Why, you're in the wrong state! You'll be wanting Maryland, which is that way, across the river."
And then I gave them directions to Sharpsburg, which I hope they manage to follow.
When I reached the front door, I burst into giggles and said to myself, "Tourists...."

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Yoga and cats

I adore cats. I really do. Camille is such a helpful little dear: she bites my yarn when I'm knitting, she wakes me up in the morning by sticking her head under the pillow and yowling if I don't get up in what she considers a timely fashion, she fangs my bookmarks, and now she's started assisting me during my daily half hour of yoga. Her help thus far has consisted of rubbing against my arms and legs while I'm doing various positions, and waving her tail under my nose to make me sneeze; of course she purrs all the while and acts like this is the best possible way to lend assistance. I can't find the cartoon, but there's a lovely (and hysterically funny) drawing of a ballerina doing a yoga pose while a Siamese cat paws at the dangling ribbons from her toeshoes. I don't even know who the artist is, but he/she does a wonderful job of capturing the essence of cats and how their minds work.
I may have taken on more than I can handle when I decided to host a swap on the Pen Fetish Crafters group on Ravelry. So far only three people have signed up, and a few more have expressed interest, but I just thought of something important: Bottled ink is fine for an endless variety of fountain pens, but cartridges are pretty specific. It would totally suck if someone sent her swap victim cartridges that didn't fit a specific pen, 'cause then they'd either have to buy a pen to fit the cartridges--not necessarily a bad thing, provided it's not a Visconti or something--or not be able to use them. Oops. I guess I still have some bugs to iron out. This is my first attempt at organizing anything like this, and so far it's going pretty well barring that one blooper.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Boxes, boxes, and boxes

I'm on a Marion Zimmer Bradley kick for some reason. Years ago, when I was in high school, I borrowed a friend's copy of "The Mists of Avalon"; on my last trip to the library, I checked out a book called "Witchlight". It is, in a nutshell, the story of a former Wall Street trader who suffered a nervous breakdown and finds herself the victim of a poltergeist. On the surface it doesn't sound like much, but as the story progresses, it becomes more interesting.
Today I reluctantly took a trip to the library and returned my very overdue books and get some more. Once again, I neglected to look at anything but fiction, which means my planned research on Popul Vuh gets neglected once again--guilt, guilt, guilt--and that my research on Empress Theodora also gets neglected--more guilt, guilt, guilt. Not that there's any shortage of material on the Infernal Net, but I'm still addicted to paper and print media.
Books, though, see the listing to the right marked Bookshelf. "Terra Incognita" is from the previous batch of books, but since I didn't read it the first time around, I renewed it and intend to sit down with it tonight and then start reading the new MZB books. Rachael: I know how busy you are with all your projects, but "Terra Incognita" might be right up your street. It certainly seems promising from the jacket blurb; I won't say anything more about it in case you do decide to read it.
Well. Another interesting parcel appeared in the mail the day before yesterday. This one was from a fellow knitter and soapmaker in Indiana whose blog can be found here; I wish I'd taken a picture of the contents of the parcel, but I forgot, and since said contents are now scattered about the house in such places as my knitting basket, the bath tub, and the kitchen sink, I'll have to titillate you by describing the items Christine included.
Soap is always fun; soap that smells like and bears a visual resemblence to oatmeal cookies is even better. Christine's soap is made with lots of oatmeal, cinnamon, and other yummy spices, so it smells wonderful and is delightfully scrubby and lathery. She was also kind enough include a bottle of homemade liquid soap. I've never actually seen this stuff before, but it's pretty darned nifty! It's very lathery, too, and I would suspect it smells quite yummy. :) In addition to these, there was a tube of home made lipbalm (raspberry!) which is equally yummy; I <3>
I've never put silk in soap before, though I'll have to do a wee batch with the silk fiber Christine included in the parcel; she suggested adding just a pinch to the lye solution and stirring it until it dissolves. The idea of something with lavender, vanilla, and silk sounds pretty nifty, I think (I blame Melissa for this.. ahem). Now all I need to do is find a vanilla bean.
So, fank you Christine!

Friday, May 9, 2008


I just went to the post office and had a hard time keeping myself from squealing with glee because I'd gotten a surprise parcel. The parcel in question came all the way from Seattle, from a lady named Emily (whose blog is here) whose generosity overwhelmed me to the point of near speechlessness. She and I were among the 25 who signed up for the Yarn Snob swap on the Cuppa Tea Ravelry group; Miss Emily was the one given the task of "stalking" me. She did an excellent job of it and I'm truly grateful to her for the effort and thought she put into the box. So, without further ado, photos of my swap box:


Thursday, May 8, 2008


Just got a phone call from Obama's hard-working campaign folks. It went something like this:
*Phone rings*
Mom: Who's calling at this hour? Probably some campaign office.
Me: It's a 304 area code. *answers phone* Hello?
Man On Phone (hereafter referred to as MOP): Good evening. I'm calling on behalf of Senator Obama's campaign...
Me: Ahhh!
MOP: *nervous laugh* We're just calling to remind you of the upcoming Democratic Primary and to ask if you'll be supporting the senator.
Me: We're supporting whoever's a Democrat.
MOP: *pause and another nervous laugh* I see. We're trying to get some information for the polls. May I ask for whom you plan to vote?
Me: We haven't really decided yet.
MOP: *some more laughter* Thank you for talking to me. Have a nice evening.
Me: Thank you. *hangs up phone*

I don't know what these people are so giggly about... really.. O.O And this gives me a perfect excuse to post this, with tongue firmly in cheek.

More Quizzies

Got this one from Rachael. I actually have the Dragon Tarot, which is my favorite of the two decks I use.
You are The High Priestess:
Science, Wisdom, Knowledge, Education.
The High Priestess is the card of knowledge, instinctual, supernatural, secret knowledge. She holds scrolls of arcane information that she might, or might not reveal to you. The moon crown on her head as well as the crescent by her foot indicates her willingness to illuminate what you otherwise might not see, reveal the secrets you need to know. The High Priestess is also associated with the moon however and can also indicate change or fluctuation, particularly when it comes to your moods.
I'm not a snob. Snob is defined thus: noun [C] MAINLY DISAPPROVING; a person who respects and likes only people who are of a high social class, and/or a person who has extremely high standards who is not satisfied by the things that ordinary people like. When you knit, you find very quickly that there's a huge difference between working with natural fiber and working with acrylic. Not that there's anything wrong with acrylic, but there's definitely a difference and I've come to prefer wool and other natural fibers. Snobbery? Nah.
So, this snobbery thing applies to other things, too. Like... writing instruments. I have three fountain pens which I love very much; all three of them, rather than running on disposable cartridges, get fed with variously nifty colors of ink with such variously nifty names as Smokey, Fireball, and Blue Bahama. Bearing this in mind, I don't actually need another fountain pen or bottle of ink, I've been drooling over a couple websites (here and here) which cater to my papierophilia and plume-o-philia (is there even a word for a pen fetish?) and have a number of cute things, specifically, the Lamy Vista and the Platinum Preppy, both of which take either converters or cartridges and are what they call "demonstrator pens". The Preppy is just plain cute with its clear barrel and brightly colored nibs; the Vista... oooh, the Vista. It's nice to look at, and I suspect it's nice to write with, too. And who could go wrong looking at the Noodler's ink? Names like Dragon's Napalm and Summer Tanager are clearly designed to catch people's attention and complement the colors they suggest.
On the other hand, I can't help but go googly eyed at the J. Herbin inks, either. J. Herbin, according to the website's own blurb, started making ink 300 years ago; such luminaries as Victor Hugo and Napoleon Bonaparte, the website says, once dipped pens into ink manufactured by this very company. Here, too, it looks like the fountain pen inks live up to their label of "la perle des encres", especially with such names as Diabolo Menthe and Rouge Opera. I honestly don't know how people can pick one from all those options... I seriously doubt I could.
In an age when commincation can take place without the use of paper and postage stamps thanks to things like e-mail and instant messengers, I hope these things won't disappear. I told mom the other day that I have plans to learn how to do old-fashioned copperplate, which I intend to use to write letters.
Hoo! Hah! Long live paper, pens, ink, and postage stamps! I do so enjoy being anachronistic. :P

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Never A Quickie

Belatedly, a picture of the quiche. In the future I'd like to make this with something not quite so high in calorie content, and maybe even make my own crust next time. The asparagus is hard to judge because the stalks were so huge--homegrown, remember?--so I'll try to eyeball it.

Asparagus and Sausage Quiche

2 frozen pie shells
8 eggs
1/2 cup milk (roughly.. you can add a bit more if you need to)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 lb sweet Italian sausage, browned and crumbled--you could try substituting tofu sausage or something else if you're concerned about calories
8 oz asparagus, trimmed and cut in pieces (save the tips to do something artistic with)
1/4 cup ricotta cheese
2 tbsp chopped chives
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Peel and brown the sausage, and when it's cooked, add the asparagus and let it get just a little bit soft. The heat from the sausage will continue cooking it even after it's off the heat. Let the sausage/asparagus cool while you whisk the eggs, milk, pepper, cheese, and chives. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Divide the meat/asparagus between the pie shells when it's completely cooled, then pour the egg mixture over it. If there isn't enough to go evenly, add a couple more whisked eggs. Arrange the asparagus tips over the top of the pies, then put them in the oven on the middle rack for about 40 minutes or until you can poke them with a knife and it comes out clean.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Warm Fuzzies

You are Merino Wool.You are very easygoing and sweet. People like to keep you close because you are so softhearted. You love to be comfortable and warm from your head to your toes.

Take this quiz.

Okay. And now.... swag. The picture of the black Lincoln doesn't do it justice and doesn't really catch the subtleties of the color and sheen, even though I photographed it in direct sunlight. Nor does it show how soft and yummy it is. While Mr. Warrick doesn't have a website, he takes e-mails, so if I need more for my cardigan idea, I might be able to have it shipped. I haven't started spinning it yet, but it's really calling my name and whispering stories about cardigans and such. I'm seriously--in case I haven't mentioned this before--thinking of knitting something similar to the Zenia cardigan, with a different Fair Isle pattern around the hem and sleeves. This will be a big project in the long term, but I'm sure it'll be worth all the time and effort. Incidentally, this ball of roving, I learned, is what they call a "bump". It makes me giggle to say "a bump of wool".
And here, too, is the bamboo roving. As of this particular moment, I'm not sure what I'll do with it, so if anyone has any suggestions, please do let me know. It's also quite soft and fuzzy and has a seriously high "touch me!" factor. Rachael told me that Copper Moose carries this stuff, so I'd have a source for it if I run out in the middle of a project, which I'd hate to do.
No official MSWF merch, alas, but they've got stuff on their website, so there's still time. :P
Oh! And after living here and gardening for about 20 years, mom finally--FINALLY!--got to eat some homegrown asparagus. Dad, silly man, refused to believe the asparagus wasn't a weed and would pull it up by the roots no matter how many times we told him it was a vegetable. So, today, for the first time, mom actually harvested about six stalks of the stuff and we put it in a quiche.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Do you feel... sheepish?

Today was the start of the annual Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival, and bright and early(ish) we packed up the car with sandwiches, bottles of frozen water, the camera, and ourselves, and off we went down the highway toward the Howard County Fairground. It's a goodly drive down I-70, with lots of farms and grass and trees; and then, when the traffic starts getting a little more congested, you look to the right and see the smoke from the pit barbecues and you see lots of people milling around, and a big yellow sign saying "Sheep and Wool Festival".
This year there were an awful lot of folks wandering around with buttons with the Ravelry logo and their Ravatars; there were even fair few wearing Ravelry shirts. I only saw two people I recognized, but it was really, really neat to see all these people who, while I may have seen them last year and not had a clue who they were, have this addiction in common. I, alas, didn't find the Rabbit Building, so I didn't have a button, but I was able to pounce on a couple people and squeal, "Hey! I know you!" It was quite a bit of fun.
The set up doesn't really differ from one year to the next, though the main exhibits do: last year's was Navajo weavers, this year's is Renaissance textiles. There are lots of sheep breeders who come back every year, and vendors from all over the world who come to show their wares; I think the one who traveled farthest was from Wales. This year, too, there was a tent run by a group of SCA folks who attended the event in full garb, and all of them were doing something amazingly fibrous: knitting, weaving, and bobbin lace. They were nice enough to let me take a couple of pictures.
Speaking of pictures, I did actually take some... and managed to delete all but two before I got them uploaded to photobucket. The only two to survive my moment of mental density were one of someone's license plate--it was appropriately fibrous--and one of some of the ladies at the SCA tent. Check out that awesome umbrella! I left a message with M (K's mom) who has plans to go tomorrow, and asked if she'll take some pictures if she gets a chance....
So, without much fanfare, here's photographic evidence that I was at MSWF 2008. I'll take pictures of my purchases tomorrow so you can be green with envy; for now I'll just say I snagged a big ball of black Lincoln roving (very soft and yummy and hopefully enough for a cropped cardigan when I get around to spinning it) from Warrick Sheep and some gloriously blue bamboo roving in a colorway called Aegean. I've never spun anything but wool before, but since the ladies at the booth were kind enough to offer some suggestions it shouldn't be too hard if I remember to spin it pretty tightly. Since bamboo doesn't have scales the way protein fibers do, there's nothing much for it to stick to; this means you have to spin it almost to the point of overtwist, according to the ladies at Opalesscence.
Rachael: I saw a vendor from Lawrence, Kansas and it made me think of you. :P
Oh, and I got my hand kissed by a friendly sheep, which really made my day.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

They Do This For a REASON!

Okay. I've griped about local politcs a few times now, mostly because of the stupid parking crap. The latest piece of nonsense is enough to make steam come out of my ears.
Rumors have been circulating for a little while that there's a certain gentleman in town who wants the town goverment to put up soundproof barriers at the rail crossings--all TWO of them--because he doesn't like the noise of the trains' horns as they go through town. This strikes me as just plain stupid because, A. The barriers cost upward of $10k each, and B. The trains have to blow their horns to 1. let other trains know they're coming, 2. let traffic know they're coming, 3. let pedestrians know they're coming. They're not making noise for the sake of making noise, y'all!
So last night around dinner time, this lady shows up at the door with a stack of pamphlets saying that the town should be made a quiet zone and that trains should be prohibited from blowing their horns as they go through town. I just stared at her in a "What the hell kind of drugs are you stashing in your coffee cup, honey?" kind of way, and when I finally collected my wits, I said, "No thanks. You do realize they have horns for a reason, right? No. No thanks. Have a nice evening." And then I turned around, slammed the door, and locked it.
I swear. People just have too much time to sit around thinking up this crap. The horns are there for safety reasons. Why do you think school buses stop at rail crossings and open the doors? It's so the drivers can listen for the HORN and make sure there's no oncoming train that might squash the bus, driver, and kiddies. Naturally, the razor-sharp wit who concocted this idiotic plan didn't think of that; the sole concern is that the noise from the cute little train driving through the cute little town disturbs them, and those kids and the school bus can go fly a kite.
Do they ever look at the big picture, do you think?

Otherwise, today I got a haircut. Much needed. Not that I was turning into Cousin It, but I definitely needed a change. It's one of those angled, shorter and layered in the back, long in the front things; the front part is shoulder length and the back is about half that. I'm not describing it well. The lady who cut it did a terriffic job, but she zig-zag parted it... bleh. Still, washing it and parting it down the middle fixed it and it's mahvelous. :P
Speaking of which, the shampoo bar got a field test today and there were bubbles everywhere! There are a couple of people--you know who you are!--who will also be field testing (muwahahahaha, my dear guinea pigs!) and eventually give me some feedback. I hope. Don't worry.. my hair hasn't turned green and fallen out, so you guys should be perfectly safe.