Monday, September 29, 2008


I am having serious salt cravings today (Yay PMS!) and Mr.Q got his lip split open at work this afternoon (to any fambly who may have read his Facebook status - he is OK) While neither of us are suffering from any life-or-sanity-threatening conditions, I still think it's a night to stay in and indulge. Chocolate milk for him, potato chips (ripple) for me. A couple of brain-candy movies. And I believe there is both beer and Strongbow in the fridge. Also, he finally got a turntable that works, to go with the kajillions of vinyl discs chez Quimby, so we're listening to Tom Waits at the moment. I think it all adds up to a perfect Monday evening, frankly.

(Oh! And my Knit Picks needles all arrived today! Squee! More on that later....)

Meanwhile, I'm considering starting a Facebook group: Yarn Harlot for Prime Minister. Since she seems a little more in touch with "ordinary Canadians" than our current PM. Stephen Harper can kiss my arts.

(Hey, that's actually a pretty cool slogan...I might have to put that on a T-shirt! I wonder if it would be any harder to copyright that than parts of our National Anthem. Frack, I can't wait till the Olympics are over!)

(Seriously, even if you can't even remotely imagine knitting, go read her post today. Gawd I can't wait till the election is over!)

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Va bene!

I've had an almost ridiculously-busy last-half-of-the week, but mostly in a good way. My Dad came into town for work on Thursday afternoon, so I took the day off work to go pick him up from the airport and have a visit.

(TMI ALERT) Since I already had the day off, I decided to multi-task and go to the doctor for my annual Uncomfortably Invasive Procedure. Back story: this particular doc is helping with a focal study on HPV with the BC Cancer Society, and had sent most of her patients a request to participate by allowing her to take an extra sample & send it on to the study group. No problemo, I thought...though this was the only reason I went back to her. It's notoriously difficult to find a GP in Vancouver (as in many other places, I know!) who's accepting new patients. So when I was overdue for a physical last year, I was happy to find a doctor who 1) was taking new patients; 2) was a woman; and 3) had an office that was in a reasonably convenient location. She was on vacation when I went in last year. Her replacement was awesome, but the receptionist gave me the willies.

What I didn't know about this particular doctor at the time is that her primary practice is in esthetics. Yes, she's a licensed family practioner, but my patient history form included questions about whether I was interested in Botox, collagen injections, face-lifts, etc. I indicated that I am not. I wasn't going to go back, but then this focal study came up, so I decided I could suck it up this time.

I'm not sure whether she disliked me because I'm not into the medical esthetics thing (I'm sure she gets a lot more money from that, rather than the provincially-covered family medicine!) or if she was just not capable of making any facial expressions at all, due to all the fracking botulism injected into her face.

Am I being catty? Maybe. But I have to say, it's just plain creepy to talk to a person with a totally inexpressive face. Makes one realize just how much we rely on body language and facial expression when we communicate. Anyway, I do think she just didn't like me, coz she was way stabbier than you would expect a female doctor to be with that kind of procedure!

Anyway, that's over for awhile now! And I'll be looking for another doctor in the meantime.

Having survived that ordeal, I picked up the rental car & got to the airport just in time to meet Dad. We had a nice afternoon visit, and then I left him with Mr.Q while I went to my first Italian class....SO much fun! Though the instructor spoke Italian about 60-70% of the class, giving me a whole new perspective on what my students go through!

Last night, we had a fambly dinner with Dad, my sister, our cousin, and a couple of friends. It was rather crowded in our teeny place, but I think everybody had a good time. We don't often host people for dinner - the layout of our apartment just isn't conducive to groups larger than about 3 - but hey, we were all more or less family, and what's a little cozying-up between family?

This morning, Mr.Q and I both had dental appointments on Commercial Drive....good times! He returned the rental car while I got a couple of fillings (I don't mind the actual filling part, it's the freezing needle I hate...though I'm happy to report that it was much less horrible than I was anticipating. Also, there was a TV in the ceiling, so I got to watch Saturday morning cartoons.) And then he went in for a cleaning, while I took my Italian homework to a cafe. Being that the Drive is also known as "Little Italy" and I ended up in Cafe Calabria - full of Roman statues and photos of Italian was perfetto! I think I'll have to do it again next week.

(The homework in a cafe...and the dentist....eep!)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Humpernickle Bread Day

A rainy Wednesday...I've got a big batch of beef stew on the stove, and I just baked some chocolate chip cookies. I'm a little antsy, and tired, and need to stay awake till the stew's finished, at least. So here I am, with a few odds and sods from the last week...

Ravelry get-together on Sunday - good times with the knitter-folk, but my knitting was seriously kicking my arse. I was not feeling the yarny love. For anything. After a few frustrated attempts to work the decreases of Fawkes' Sock #1, I realized that instead of actually reading the chart, I had just been knitting the same damned row of the chart over and over. For about 8 rounds. Frack me. I ripped it back to the heel, picked up the stitches along the flap...and resisted having a tantrum. There wasn't even any pie to console me.

I put it away, thinking I'd cast on one of the front pieces for the cardigan...couldn't even manage a 2x2 rib. Very, very frustrating. And again with the no pie.

I realized that, while I have a number of projects on the go, most of them are "loose ends" pieces - obligations, and getting tedious at that. I needed something to inspire me, tempt me, seduce me. A carrot, if you will (do sheep eat carrots?) to get me through the "should-do" knitting, via the anticipation of the decadent knitting.

Fortunately, Three Bags Full was open, and I had the best kind of enabling company. (Or worst kind, if you want to look at the damage this association is wreaking on the bank account!) I found another skein of Malabrigo Sock in a sexy blue colourway called "Impressionist Sky" (Seriously, I'd buy yarn and paint my house based solely on the cool names for the colours. Ask my Sis how we ended up with an Easter egg for a bathroom based on that principle.)

Also....ummm....well....there was some lace-weight. Even though I don't really see myself ever knitting with anything that fine. I couldn't help it. It had to come home with me.

OK, OK, it was cashmere, alright? 100%. My first. I mean, I've done some "heavy petting" with cashmere blends, but this was the real thing, the full meal deal, the home-run of yarn lust. What was I supposed to do?

So. Yeah. Found me some inspiration. Coz you know, I need more blue sock yarn!

I played around this week with some different sock patterns...I really wanted to do Rivendell in the Malabrigo, but the gauge was way, way off. Maybe if I still played with Barbies, I could knit it for them. (And let it be known that the Barbies I did play with were only ever used as victims of the murderous lust of my Darth Vader action figure. I'm just sayin'.) But no way was that going to fit my foot, no how, not ever. Got to re-think that one, though, get creative. Coz that pattern makes me squee, in a sort of "I really should not make those sounds in public" kind of way.

Settled on River Rapids in the meantime. Knitting is my friend again. Though I still think it should buy me dinner. Or pie, at least.

In not-yarn life, Mr.Q came home from work with a giant zucchini last week. I mean huge. The kind of "huge" you have to say with a Mike Meyers accent. He was tricked into taking home by one of the guys from work - some story about what a great gardener his wife is, look at the size of her zucchinis....blah blah blah.

See what I mean? There's not-so-wee, and then there's frickin' huge! I had this irresistible urge to dress it up:

What killed me was that the hat actually fit it!

Then, I gutted & shredded it, to be frozen and used in soups and muffins. I have this food processor that I use maybe once a year, and somewhere at about the 6-month mark between uses, I start to wonder why I keep it around, it takes up so much space, etc.etc.

Then a giant alien zucchini from outer space comes along, and I remember why I keep the food processor.

Seventeen cups of shredded zucchini.

In other vegetable-related matters, somewhere in that last week of summer I raided the garden I'd helped plant in a friend's back yard. I use the term "garden" loosely, as we didn't do anything to the soil beforehand; I think it's been weeded twice all summer; and I'm not sure that it's been watered much more than that. And not by me. So I left the zucchinis for them (hah!) and if that pathetic spaghetti squash survives, they can have that, too. All I wanted was a tomato. Not even a tomato plant, just a tomato. One single, solitary, sun-ripened tomato, picked and eaten fresh from the vine. On toast, with cheese and fresh-cracked pepper and a dash of sea salt.

OhmiGAWD it was amazing!

Sunday, September 21, 2008


Well. I was going to blog about a giant zucchini on steroids, and how my Tuscany shawl is about 27 feet wide, but instead a certain somebody (or, somebodies) distracted me with this: (FSM only knows what kind of trouble they'll get me in today!)

(For some reason, you have to scroll way down....)

Behold... My Future
  I will marry Viggo Mortensen.  
  After a wild honeymoon, We will settle down in Costa Rica in our fabulous Shack.  
  We will have 2 kid(s) together.  
  Our family will zoom around in a blue electric scooter.
  I will spend my days as a Yarn Fondler, and live happily ever after.  
whats your future

Friday, September 19, 2008


You are The Cap'n!

Some men and women are born great, some achieve greatness and some slit the throats of any scalawag who stands between them and unlimited power. You never met a man - or woman - you couldn't eviscerate. You are the definitive Woman of Action, the CEO of the Seven Seas, Lee Iacocca in a blousy shirt and drawstring-fly pants. You're mission-oriented, and if anyone gets in the way, that's his problem, now isn't? Your buckle was swashed long ago and you have never been so sure of anything as your ability to bend everyone to your will. You will call anyone out and cut off his head if he shows any sign of taking you on or backing down. If one of your lieutenants shows an overly developed sense of ambition he may find more suitable accommodations in Davy Jones' locker. That is, of course, IF you notice him. You tend to be self absorbed - a weakness that may keep you from seeing enemies where they are and imagining them where they are not.

What's Yer Inner Pirate?

brought to you by
The Official Talk Like A Pirate Web Site. Arrrrr!

(Some poxy bilge rat stole my picture! When I find him I'll skewer him with my rapier and hoist him up on the mizzenmast!)

Happy Talk Like A Pirate Day! And if ye don't talk like the scurvy pirates ye are, I'll make ye swab the decks and walk the plank.


Monday, September 15, 2008

Very Important Day

I was feeling a little grumpy about the whole Monday thing when I first got up today. (Which was, oh, a half-hour ago!) But it's much better now. I should be making my lunch and eating breakfast instead of blogging, but I'm obviously not. I was browsing some Ravelry threads while having my coffee (what better way to start a day?!) and I realized: Today is my one-year Ravelversary! No longer newlyweds, the honeymoon over - Ravelry and I have settled into a comfortable-but-not-complacent relationship. Now, I can't imagine life before R, who continues to surprise and inspire me. Always something new to discover, to learn, to appreciate. Keeps a relationship dynamic, even spicy! I'm looking foward to many more years together.


Friday, September 12, 2008

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Everybody Sing!

Happy Anniversary,
Happy Anniversary,
Happy Anniversary,

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Da bus haz a better flavr

The bus home was more crowded than usual today. I don't mind the rush-hour ride home so much if I can snag one of the single seats and knit without feeling crowded, or like I might accidentally stab somebody with my needles if the driver hits the brakes suddenly. Today, it was not meant to be. I found a window seat on the shady side of the bus, at least - it was hot - and was just contemplating whether I had room to pull out my knitting, when a large-ish middle-aged suit carrying a huge backpack sat down next to me, effectively pinning me against the side of the bus.

"Oh, spot and bother," I thought to myself. (OK, actually it was more like "Oh, fuck." But I'm editing for the sake of my parents' delicate sensibilities.)

And then , he promptly pulled out his crochet.

I asked him what he was making. "A baby blanket," he said; then added, rather sheepishly,"It's just something to pass the time while I'm on the bus."

I pulled out my knitting. We had a great conversation.

And when he got off the bus, I decided that it was time to stop minimizing my knitting to the Muggles who look at me askance. Look all you want, baby, but I'm gonna have warm, sexy feets this winter! And I'm going to wear them proudly.

So there.

Not that any of those kinds of Muggles would be reading this, but still.

(Mr.Q just set a plate of pasta down in front of me, with a beer. Gotta run!)

1000 Words

This about says it all!

At least Mr.Q made me coffee before he went to work, so there's a caffeine-flavour creeping in there!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Monday Moods

Bit of a funky mood today, for no particular reason. The weather's gorgeous, I love this time of year! Work goes well - a big learning curve, of course, getting settled in a new environment, but most of the other staff are friendly and helpful. I finished the Tuscany shawl photos yet, though. I'm really not happy with the colour changes between the skeins that were theoretically from the same dye lot...and in reality, are about as similar as an apple and a bagel. OK, maybe I'm exaggerating a little there, but really - horizontal stripes across the back of a short person with the shoulders of a (padded) football player...not so sexy! But somehow, some way, it needs to be over-dyed. Soon, so I can wear it while the weather's right.

Went up Main Street yesterday to meet up with the Terminal City Ravelers...good times, as always! I even went into Three Bags and managed not to buy anything. (Ummm...that would be because I walked out of there on Saturday with 3 skeins of Malabrigo sock yarn. There was public fondling and squealing, and not just by me!)

I'm supposedly off to another meet-up tonight, but I am just sooo tired that I'm not sure it's going to happen. I still have a half-hour to decide. I want to go; they're a fun bunch, too. But. That whole "tired & dealing with public transit" thing is not motivating me.

Blah blah blah. I don't even really know what I'm saying! Think I'll go have a little lie-down and make up my mind...Yay for the end of Monday!

Friday, September 5, 2008

Procrastinator: A new superhero!

I should so totally be getting ready for work. (Oh, yeah, I found a job. More on that later!) But instead I'm playing on Ravelry, and got distracted by someone's blog, where I found this - and it's not, I think, too far off base!

Your result for The Perception Personality Image Test...

NBPS - The Idealist

Nature, Background, Big Picture, and Shape

You perceive the world with particular attention to nature. You focus on the hidden treasures of life (the background) and how that fits into the larger picture. You are also particularly drawn towards the shapes around you. Because of the value you place on nature, you tend to find comfort in more subdued settings and find energy in solitude. You like to ponder ideas and imagine the many possibilities of your life without worrying about the details or specifics. You are in tune with all that is around you and understand your life as part of a larger whole. You prefer a structured environment within which to live and you like things to be predictable.

The Perception Personality Types:


Take The Perception Personality Image Test at HelloQuizzy

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Queen for a day. Or something.

One thing I don't remember doing much of as a kid was playing princess...I was far more interested in playing Star Wars, or rounding up the neighbourhood kids and directing them in a made-up play or something. Or climbing on the roof. (Ummm...drove by that old house when I was home last and had another look at that roof...Sorry 'bout that, Mom!)

But today was a special day! I get to make up for that lack of princess-hood. Today I learned that I'm about to get my very own crown. In fact, I'm so fantabulous, I get two!

Yeah, I sure do love my dentist. My new one, that is. It's been five years since we've had dental insurance (that we've bothered to use...oops!) - since we left the Kootenays. So I went for a check-up and cleaning today. I also need three fillings. He's going to put them all in on the same day. Two on one side of my mouth, and one on the other. That should be all I need to perfect my squirrel impression! Coz you know, that's in the top two of my List Of Things to Do Before I Die.


But they did send me home with some new dental of those little teeny ones that will fit perfectly in my knitting notions pouch, for lo, I am a believer in the goodness that is a lifeline.

He asked, of course, if I floss regularly. I told the truth: I use floss quite often. For my knitting. He was...nonplussed. I refrained from the next obvious step: a lecture on the True Destiny of Ziploc Bags. He did have sharp pointy things in my mouth at the time.

I think I swallowed some of the flouride. I'm feeling kind of queasy. And I had to spit a lot on the way home. Gross!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Play Date

Mr.Q had some play money from a couple of gigs, burning a hole in his pocket. He decided (no surprise) that he wanted to go up to his favourite record store and poke around. Since he's been so busy the last couple of weeks with rehearsals and shows, yesterday was supposed to be Quality Time. So he bribed me. "Anything else you need from the yarn store, while that sale's on?"

Ummm....I'm sure I could think of something....Christmas knitting! Yeah, that's it! (We could never, ever live in that neighbourhood - there are two yarn stores and two record shops within an 8-block stretch.)

Seems I was not the only one with a weak will. It's nice to know I'm in good company! I was reasonably restrained, walking out with stuff I could conceivably have somewhat-immediate plans for. You know, if I was all organized and disciplined and stuff. And for once, Mr.Q finished at the record store before I was done. An interesting turn of events!

After he fetched me from the yarn store, he offered to take me to lunch. There's a wee spot across the street from Three Bags that I've been curious about - a sort of Middle-Eastern/Indian restaurant - I've had their mango lassis and they're quite good, but hadn't eaten there yet. It much fun! Low seats and benches along each wall, with low tables in front, lots of tapestries and carpets and candles and wood furniture. Like being in a yurt, but with plumbing:

They brought us tiny cups of incredible chai while we waited for our rotis. Love the pinky action!

I had paneer and peas, very Indian; Mr.Q had beef and lamb kababs, very Middle Eastern. He was calling it the "Peshawar to Kandahar experience" - and it was a combination that worked quite well! We'll definitely go back.

Waiting for the bus home, fall was definitely in the air. The light's shifted, the colours are suddenly changing, and the wind was tossing around the first few leaves on the ground:

We capped off the day by digging into the second season of Stargate SG-1. Great knitting time! I am on the last repeat of the Tuscany shawl...will have to start into a third skein of the Socks that Rock, but should have more than enough left over for a pair of socks or something.

Our vegetative viewing was interrupted at one point by a strange rustling noise on the table. It took us a minute to figure out what it was, but then we found this:

He stayed in there for a good part of the evening. I am heroically resisting the urge to make a joke about letting the cat out of the bag.

(But not quite heroically enough, apparently!)