Friday, August 29, 2008



You Are 50% Weird

Normal enough to know that you're weird...

But too damn weird to do anything about it!

We always suspected.

I'm copping out today. A quiz, a cut-n-paste of a perfume review, and I'm on my way home.

Miss you already.

Red Roses - Jo Malone

Marin says: Wow. Roseroseroseroserose.

Did anybody else have solid perfumes when you were little? Those flat disks of waxy white from Avon in unmistakable single scents? I had rose. It smelled a lot like this.

I've been looking for this rose... so many rose perfumes are rose mixed with a bunch of something (often my nemesis, sandalwood) that renders the rose not a rose, proving a rose by its own name may yet not smell as sweet.

Also? There are eleventy-three kinds of roses. They don't all smell like roseroseroseroserose.

For Jo Malone, this is a really strong scent. Most of her stuff is elusive, designed to be layered and mixed. But this is strong and staying strong.

For all my gushing, I'm not sure roseroseroseroserose is something I want to smell like.

Jo Malone says: Composed of seven types of roses from around the world,§ red roses is a surprisingly clean, voluptuous scent. With a heart of crushed violet leaves and hints of lemon and spearmint, it unfolds like a bouquet of fresh-cut flowers.

The Perfumed Court says: Made of seven types of roses,$ crushed violet leaves, lemon and spearmint, Jo Malone red roses is one of the few lighter, green# rose scents, just beautiful.

Hans says: It smells like asparagus pee. No, wait... roses. Is there a word for when you first spray it on? Tell them it started out like pee, but it changed.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): L'Occitane has a rose scent called Eau des 4 Reines that combines four different roses. When it first came out, they had a station with the four separate rose scents. Every one of them, you'd recognise as rose, you'd call rose... it had never occurred to me how different roses smell within their species. For the record, Eau des 4 Reines smells like baby powder.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): It's making me sneeze, for one thing.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): See? The thing I most think of as "rose" is an amalgam of SEVEN roses. It was probably always that way. I just associate that particular smell with my childhood version of rose.

$FOOTNOTE (on the money!): Ha! Got one! And I'm *so* proud of being able to name rose out of the roseroseroseroserose scent named "Red Roses."

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): I beg to differ. This isn't just the strongest Jo Malone scent I've tried, it may be the strongest scent PERIOD.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Green? Really?

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Do Pigs Get Hairballs?

It's possible I do.

Last night, I finished all the knitting on the Vampirates sweater. Then I wove in ends.

For someone who knits in most of her ends as she goes, I sure had a lot of needlework to do.

First I tried spitting on my fingers and mashing the yarn ends together to suitably configure them for threading through the eye of the needle, but they'd be just damp enough that the fibres would stick to my fingers and actually pull apart more.

So I stuck them in my mouth like my ancestors before me.

And ended up with a throat full of superwash.

Imagine the cat's surprise when I started *hornking* when he tried to sit in my lap.

[SUMMARY: Hornking a hairball on the cat? Priceless.]

Our fantasy draft is tonight. Brother has taken over commissioner duties for the league.

Thank the holy cats.

I used to have a lot of fun with it. I wrote funny, insightful, clever articles every week. I trash-talked with the best of them while maintaining benevolent stewardship of the rules.

Every year the whining got worse.

Last year's "Jack gets up earlier than me and gets better players. Can you change the add/drop every week... maybe make it random so it's fair to everybody?" left me completely cold. And over it.

I think it's good for the league and for their ex-Commishette to change regimes.§

But it's really hard not to keep calling Brother to remind him to bring pens and draft sheets and bye week sheets and...

[SUMMARY: Fantasy leagues come and go, but a big sister is forever.]

Unfortunately, our fantasy draft is tonight, coincident with the grand finale of the DNC.

Back story: historically, our drafts have been twelve rounds. Tonight, we're doing fifteen.


I couldn't care less about missing Obama's acceptance speech.

I am a little invested in the state of traffic as we try to make it home past the population zones, possibly when they're letting out.

There's some consolation in the fact that we'll be mostly streaming toward downtown while the masses are streaming out of downtown.

[SUMMARY: Did you not hear? I'm not commissioner. I'm allowed to whine now.]

Hans and I are going to take one last lunchtime peruse of the 16th Street Mall today and say farewell to the DNC and all its pamphlet-passing glory. You should see the pile of political paraphrenalia I've amassed.

All I need is the "Make Out, Not War" sticker and the donkey frisbee to make my life complete.

[SUMMARY: Marin's goals much exceed her reach, or what's an Internet for?]

CNN gave a shout out to my neighbourhood. Or at least that portion where we shop and drink.

If you look at the photo, go down the street as far as you can, you can just not quite see the Coral Room just beyond the tree.

[SUMMARY: That's two of my fifteen minutes.]

Paprika Brasil - Hermès (Hermèssence)

Marin says: With a name like "Paprika," it's hard not to be influenced to think of a spice. And I definitely got strong spice at the first blast -- I would have called it pepper all on my own.

After it bloomed for a minute, I got violet and pepper. Or maybe violet and cedar. Cedar is kinda peppery. Since this is a Jean Claude Ellena, we'll see what the roll-out looks like.

After a half-hour, its lightened up a lot and now smells like fading violet with a slightly petroleum edge.#

Late in the evening, it reminded me very much of my Pink Jasmine, with its bright jasmine and white pepper notes.††

The Perfumed Court says: A woody spicy scent with notes of pimento,$ clove,‡‡ paprika, iris, green leaves, reseda, ember wood§§ and woody notes.

Hans says: It smells like... I always do that: "It smells like... I don't know."

I think my allergies are deadening my sense of smell. It smells like... wood! You know the wrappers, the little [Hans sign language for wrapper]... cedar? The wood wrappers on a cigar? It smells like the wood wrapper on a cigar.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Which seemed way more Miss Manners than stuffing yarn tails in my mouth.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): And sending emails to say, "Please print this email and take it to the mirror. Read it out loud to yourself and if you still want to put forth this idea once you've done that, make an immediate appointment for a vasectomy. We don't need your kind breeding."

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Before someone's head explodes. I'm not naming names.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): And by, "we," I mean, "I."

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Not as bad as it sounds. I think violet has a slightly petroleum edge anyway -- it's what makes it violet and not, say, lily.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): And I think I completely failed to mention the pepper in my review of Pink Jasmine. It has pepper. So now you know.

$FOOTNOTE (on the money): I'm giving myself credit for recognising pimiento as part of the pepper family. Otherwise I'd be o-fer and nobody wants that, right?

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Clove! Cool! I love clove! I can kinda see it now that I've read it.

§§FOOTNOTE (look behind you): I looked up "ember wood" on Wikipedia, but mostly I got firecraft and a character list from Elfquest.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Secret Pal 12 Question 12

I'm sure most of us have a proudest moment when it comes to knitting. A project or technique that you've tackled and completed beautifully. What is your proudest knitting moment?

If you've been around me enough, you've heard my bird-by-bird philosophy of knitting. It's not pretentious or flip, it's really how I feel.

Generally, pride comes simply from finishing something§ because I have yet to find a pattern that didn't fall under that "it's either knit or purl" umbrella.

[SUMMARY: Pride is a sin, you know.# I'm still running for saint.]

And on the flip side? What is the one thing that you can't get right? What is that one project that you've never been able to complete? Or that you did complete but then hid away instantly because it was too embarrassing?

I have a *lot* of projects I haven't completed.

I haven't completed them generally because they aren't birthday or Christmas presents for someone else†† and birthdays and Christmas rolled around, necessitating deadline knitting.

Oh, wait... not quite true.

We've all of us KALers given up on the stupid Sebring tank because the pattern sizing is so very wrong and none of is *that* interested in fighting it.@ It's just a tank top. It shouldn't become rocket science.

But not because we "can't get it right" -- just 'cause the pattern is so bad.

[SUMMARY: I sleep well at night with my clear knitting conscience.]

Trust me... inasmuch as this is still a knitblog, you will know when I find that stitch that ties me in knots or that technique that simply eludes me.

There will be cussing.‡‡

Bois de Iles - Chanel

Marin says: Heavy and sweet. I don't know if it's power of suggestion from knowing "Chanel" is in the name, but I get a lot of aldehyde right off the bat. Also rose and sandalwood, which I'm starting to recognise as a classic -- overdone -- combination.

It's a Bois, so there should be wood, but... well, I guess sandalwood is wood, but when I see "wood," I'm always hoping for something more like tree bark.§§

The nice part is that the aldehyde seems to be under the other stuff, so it isn't too overwhelmingly No. 5 for me.

There's some other flower... I'm thinking lilac.

Oh, there's some wood. Aldehyde + sandalwood = cedar.¶¶ I like cedar.

The Perfumed Court says: The first woody fragrance created for women (in 1926). This Oriental woody scent has notes of sandalwood,$ vetiver,% tonka bean, vanilla, ylang ylang,^ iris, coriander, rose,$ jasmine and aldehydes.$

Hans says: Whoo.## That smells like baby powder! Only... something else... my first impression is baby powder, but... I want to nail this! Maybe I'm just thinking lavender baby powder. Only it's not really lavendery.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Or been around the Rickety Blog enough.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Seriously. I've never looked at a pattern to see if I could do it. I just look to see if I like it, then figure I can do it. Wouldn't it be lovely if I could approach all tasks with that kind of calm confidence? Like dating? For instance?

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): The bigger, the prouder. Square footage counts.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Not that I'm looking.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): OK, OK... I will admit I was inordinately proud when Genius Sarah told me last week my stockinette is amazing. Do I get points for confessing?

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Which is to say there's an assload of stuff I've started for myself, some experimental just-because projects for other people and poor Brother's sadly overdue Arrrgyle socks, which now take a back seat because they're already late and I don't see the logic in making everything else late on their behalf.

@FOOTNOTE (atted): I don't think I mentioned Bag Lady Kathryn wrote to the designer of the Sebring (there's no errata available for the tank) to ask if corrections were forthcoming or if she could give us some tips, as even the fattest of us (*ahem*) knitting an extra-small were in danger of slipcovering a Jeep with the results. Said designer said nobody had ever complained and very helpfully suggested we hadn't checked our gauge (that was sarcastic -- of COURSE we checked our gauge. If you have to start a project for the third time because it's waywayway too big, you check the gauge). Then she suggested the gauge for the lace panel should actually be smaller (7 st/in) than for the stockinette (6.75 st/in). Which suggested to me she's not thinking clearly and maybe never had a test-knitter on the thing.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): And vodka.

§§FOOTNOTE (seahorses!): Pine. I mostly think of pine when I think of wood. I bet there's a fancy term for sandalwood wood vs. pine wood.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (noses!): Just a theory.

$FOOTNOTE (on the money): Ha! Got one!

%FOOTNOTE (percented): I still don't know what vetiver smells like.

^FOOTNOTE (careted): I'm beginning to think I only hate ylang-ylang in bubble bath and shower gel. Maybe it doesn't react well with soap.

##FOOTNOTE (pound one in! Wait! Pound *two* in!): He may even have said, "Whoo doggy!"

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

4:01 p.m. Tuesday...

...and we have our first asshole with a megaphone.

It's gonna be a great week.

Hi, My Name is Marin...

(Hi, Marin)

...and I'm bad at dating.

(encouraging applause)

Not in a cutesy, "Oh, isn't dating just the worst... heeheeheeheehee," way, but I'm really and truly terrible at it.

I've been "dating" via the innernets for more than ten years and I'm just fucking awful.

When I go on that first date with someone I've been talking to on Match, I'm filled with apprehension and I render myself unable to talk.

I grow to dislike and distrust myself, the guy who has to put up with me and -- really -- just about everyone in the world except the waiter who's bringing me a drink.

[SUMMARY: You can see why I'm single.]

I'm sure there are several guys out there who wonder how the vibrant, witty creature who intrigued them so on her profile could be the short,§ dull thing that lets the whole evening go one-sided in two minutes flat.#

They probably think I paid someone else to write my profile.

When I have a chance meeting in a happy place,% it's all good. I can tease and flirt and sparkle and revel in my dorkness and my twelveness.

When I email someone for a week or two and set up a date, it feels like a job interview.

[SUMMARY: Guess what I did last night?]

On the plus side, I got to see a lot of DNC stuff -- pretty people in suits going to TiVi interviews, TiVi cameras on every corner,†† vendors selling Obama yearbooks for $40,‡‡ a dog in a baby sling dressed in an Obama photograph, white boater hats with red-white-and-blue grosgrain ribbons 'round the crowns.§§

Riot police in vans... on bikes... on motorbikes... on horseback...¶¶

Protestors and Democrat supporters dressed as hippies... dressed as prisoners... dressed as display racks.##

And the tear gas didn't start until I was back at the office to pick up my purse.††† Two nice security guards in the building apprised me of the spray-painting, window-breaking and the consequent tear-gassing and told me to be careful.

[SUMMARY: They like me! They really like me!]

So at least I have that going for me.

L'Eau d'Hiver - Frederic Malle (edp)

Marin says: I'm anticipating a roll-out on this one. It's the one thing I really expect from a Jean Claude Ellena creation.

The initial blast was citrus, but a carmel scent came up from beneath that pretty quickly. Then something sharp, like menthol.

About a half-hour in, it smells like green wood‡‡‡ and carnation, a wet nature smell like woods after rain.

An hour in, it's wood and carmel.

Four hours down, it's very, very soapy. Meh.

The Perfumed Court says: An Oriental blend of bergamot,$ angelica, iris, hawthorn, jasmine, honey, carnation,$ white heliotrope, caramel$ and musk.

Hans says: Ooooh. That smells like licorice!§§§

FOOTNOTE (crossed): And the closer I get to date time, the more I want to call in sick.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Charming, no? If it makes you feel any better, I rarely drink more than one on a first date. Surly, paranoid, uncommunicative and drunk. Line up boys, I *am* your dream date!

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Not height. I don't like about my height. But snappish. And monosyllabic. Can you imagine the girl who regularly uses the word "monosyllabic" being monosyllabic?

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): More than one guy has said, "Am I asking too many questions? Is there anything you want to know about me? Is there anything else I should know about you?"

Yes... I can't date.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): The exception that proves the rule is Soldier Boy, which explains why he calls every time he's in town. Psych 101: Soldier Boy was home for two weeks on leave and was returning to Iraq. Stakes were minimal. Expectations were limited.

%FOOTNOTE (percented): Like bars, football games, BBQs or the book store.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): News teams from everywhere were getting background/stock footage of DNC crowds. I must've walked through two dozen view screens yesterday. Look for me on a TiVi set near you!

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Yeah, I don't know what an Obama yearbook is either. Or why it's worth $40.

§§FOOTNOTE (wafts): A look I find charming, though it reeks of political events and barbershop quartets.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (meerkats): It was really impressive when they all took off to do riot control last night. I know a lot of people think Denver is still a cowtown, but it's been a long time since horses have galloped down the streets here.

##FOOTNOTE (two pounds, two pints): You know how some people have so many bumper stickers on their cars you wonder if there's anything they won't honk at? There are human equivalents with t-shirts, hats, buttons and banners all over the place.

†††FOOTNOTE (scent strips): I didn't want to take it into the throngs. Just in case. I left it safe in my office.

‡‡‡FOOTNOTE(like tracks through my nose holes): Which is a bitterly green smell.

$FOOTNOTE (on the money!): Ha! Got one!

§§§FOOTNOTE (Hans twirls his hands as he ): Hans got to smell five minutes after I sprayed -- and I bet carmel and menthol smells a lot like licorice.

Monday, August 25, 2008

I Love Fireworks

Um... I didn't quite finish my Ravelympics stuff. In fact, I only *technically* finished Grandma's slippers.

But the Vampirates sweater is almost done. And it's really cool.

I shoulda brought it to the office. Y'know... just in case.
Marin says: It seems just this side of about a dozen things I don't like: vanilla, Channel No. 5 aldehyde, toilet paper... but I love it. It's woody and spicy with a tiny bit of patchouli -- and when I breathe it in really deeply,§ it has a tinge of cinnamon candy to it. It's sweet, but rich and tempered by that woody, spicy thing.

Love this.

It was still good at 6:00 that night -- no roll-out, no blossoming, per se, but holding steady.

DK says: Inspired by the finest of cashmere, Black Cashmere is the color of mystery, the texture of luxe, the scent of sophistication. Wear it with anything or nothing at all.#

The Perfumed Court says: With notes of saffron,$ patchouli oil$ and African wenge wood,$ Black Cashmere eau de parfum is a gorgeous, dark fragrance.

Hans says: Is that patchouli? I dunno. I get patchouli.†† It's definitely earthy.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): But technical's all I needed to get one of these:

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Back, both sleeves, and I'm halfway up the armholes on the front... despite the fact that I keep freaking myself out and nearly frogging half of it because of a perceived fatal error.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Like, stick my nose right on my wrist and snork. I don't get cinnamon candy from what wafts up while I'm typing.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Y'know... the black kind.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): OK, I can get behind that.

$FOOTNOTE (on the money!): I am getting so good at this. Even if I couldn't identify saffron *specifically* or African wenge wood *specifically*... I am SO in the ballpark.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): How does the guy who comes up with "diaper" half the time manage to identify barely identifiable patchouli? Or maybe it's just me.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Secret Pal 12 Question 11


And can I tell you how thrilled I am the SP question finally came up this week? I'm tapped. My brain is no longer generating useful or entertaining bits... if it ever did.

What is the best thing you've ever received in the mail?

Wow. That's a kind of difficult one.

I've been to Girl Scout Camp, was an exchange student in Mexico for most of a summer when I was 13 and went to Antarctica for six months -- letters% from home were always fantastic.

[SUMMARY: Oh, the places I've been!]

I received my AP English test scores, college acceptance letters, title to the first car I bought myself, and the neighbourhood covenants§ when I bought my house.

[SUMMARY: Validation of a life well-documented.]

I do have a story, though, about one of my favourite mail moments:

My freshman year in college, one of the first people I bonded with was Chris Erikson. He was gorgeous# and a Rush fan†† and one of those naturally popular people it's just good to have on your side.

I was in the basement of the Union getting my mail and he detoured from the pool table to say hello and, "Hey, what'd you get?" I handed my meager stack of mail over to him and he zeroed in on a letter from my friend Mark in England.

"Can I open it?"


"Can I read it?"


Now, Mark is funny as hell and creative, so I figured it'd be a good letter. And I knew there wouldn't be anything incriminating in it.

Only Mark had annotated this letter with pictures cut from magazines. And the picture that popped out‡‡ first was a photo of an erect penis, separate from its owner, with the handwritten note, "This isn't me."

Chris crowed with glee and read the letter out loud to me, giggling the whole time.

I never got a penis letter from Mark before or since, but that letter cemented me in Chris's mind as a cool chick who knew cool people, and we lived happily ever after.§§

[SUMMARY: Never has one person gotten so much credit for doing so little.]
Bois Farine - l'Artisan Parfumeur¶¶

Marin says: It smells kinda like peanut butter. Not Jif, but the stuff in a Reese's peanut butter cup. Fake peanut butter. A little sweet, a little unnatural.

I know this is supposed to be an innovative perfume and it does, indeed, smell like flour. Like flour and water paste, to be more specific. It's not unpleasant, just really odd.

Three hours in, it smells a tiny bit flowerier, which helps it be less... odd. Yeah, I'm running out of words for this one.

Oh, wait. Wait. There's a roll-out with this one! It's making me very happy -- almost giddy. The flour paste and light floral is there, but blossoming, and there's something astringent and vaguely medicinal that reads like camphor or cinnamon -- something that would make you hot or cool if you rubbed it on your skin.


l'Artisan says: Created by Jean-Claude Ellena, perfume composer of great talent and international fame, Bois Farine (Wood Flour) is the product of his encounter with a magic tree in the Reunion Islands.

Here, in a forest known as the coloured wood forest, surrounded by evocatively named trees , red wood, yellow wood, iron wood and milk wood, he unexpectedly discovered the fragrant white tree - a rare and nowadays protected species, reputed to have magical powers. This tree is specific to Reunion Island and its red flower smells like flour.

Bois Farine is a single and unique fragrance,## a magical union between witch wood and flower powder … As rich and fresh as flour rain.

Hans says: Oh, that does smell like diaper. *sniff* Yep. Diaper. Like baby powder. You know, like when you go into a baby changing station?

%FOOTNOTE (percented): And M&Ms.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): With the letter saying I'd earned the highest score in the state. Yay me. Oh, let me brag... I don't have that much to brag about.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): A milestone.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Which I read cover-to-cover that night in bed.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): I *always* have a story. You may have noticed.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Looked like a blond David Cassidy.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): And was, in fact, driving on the epic road trip from Gunnison to the Rush concert in Denver (2/14/86) that turned my bladder into the camel's hump it is today.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): So to speak.

§§FOOTNOTE (won't that turn your head around?): He even called me once a couple of years after graduation just because he found me in the phone book.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (put your hands up!): For those of you who may be interested (*coughSylvia* *coughRosie*), l'Artisan will ship you five samples of your choice for the price of shipping and handling ($7). Along with a catalogue that is the most beautiful, expensive example of the printer's art I have ever seen.

##FOOTNOTE (pound that point home!): Um... because nobody else would try to make a perfume smell like flour?

Thursday, August 21, 2008

This is My Pig Nose

A funny perfume story: I've learned not to use my right wrist when reviewing perfumes.

All day, it sits on my glow-in-the-dark pig rest, and the pig rest has taken on all my perfumes. So my right wrist smells entirely different from my left wrist, and not at all like the perfume I put on that morning.

[SUMMARY: I'm making my own perfume.]

A funny knitting story: I've only knit one sweater before and it was top-down and seamless, so the Vampirates sweater with set-in sleeves is new territory.

This was never more obvious than when I knit up the first sleeve and tried to figure out how it would fit into the armhole and realised§ I hadn't knit the shoulder cap.

I had to un-bindoff and finish the thing properly.

[SUMMARY: When dorks knit sweaters.]

A funny book story: I came back from the bathroom at 4:00 this morning to find Cat for Scale lovingly licking the edges of the pages of the second Vampirate book. I wash my hands before I read it,# so I don't think there's residual food anywhere.

Weird little cat.

[SUMMARY: Weird little household.]

I believe that covers that covers all the major hobbies. Except drinking.††

We're clear for the day -- I'm going to go wash my pig.
Clair de Musc - Serge Lutens (edp)

Marin says: Perfume. Kind of non-descript and remarkable only in that it had no alcohol or aldehyde edge and an undefinable sweet smell.

I've had conversation recently that musk may not be quite the animal/sexual smell I thought it was -- everything I've smelled that says musk lately seems to be sweet like baby powder. Not my cup of tea.

The Perfumed Court says: A floral-woody-musk fragrance with notes of delicate orange blossom and white iris from Tuscany.

Hans says: Definitely soapy, but a particular soap... *sniff*

Dove. *sniff*

Dove lotion bar.††

FOOTNOTE (crossed): With 45 hearts!

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Green Gable.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Only two days later!

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): That damned pee-every-time-I-roll-over thing.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): It is, technically, someone else's book. And he hasn't even seen it yet, so I have to keep it neat and clean.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): I think I will now have a drink.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): I actually don't have a footnote. Just wanted to say hey to Lyda, who was worried when there were no footnotes yesterday. I know she has a system and everything.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


It's a lovely day.

I could bitch about work, but it's a lovely day.

I could bitch about the DNC, but it's a lovely day.

I could bitch about repetitive knitting injuries, but it's a lovely day.

And the Vampirates books are *outstanding*

And I just learned how to use gmail chat.

And I'm done with the four square feet of black stockinette on the Vampirates sweater and I'm allowed to start the skull with joy and no four square feet of black stockinette hanging over my head.

And Genius Sarah said my four square feet of black stockinette is amazing.

So let's just call it a good day. Only I have to get back to work.

And gmail chat.
Fleurs d'Oranger - Serge Lutens (edp)


I'm pretty sure I already told you this story, but when I was 14, we drove to Cali for spring break. On the way, we stopped to visit my godparents in Scottsdale. When we got out of the car in April in Scottsdale, I thought it the most magical thing ever -- the whole world smelled of flowers. I made appreciative noises and Mom said, "Those are orange blossoms."

Within about ten minutes, I was a little over orange blossoms. By day three, the smell of orange blossoms nauseated me.

It's a largely pleasant smell, sweet but natural and a tiny bit tangy, but it's enveloping to me. It's thick and I just can't get away from it. I'm a little dizzy right now. Wait... now it smells like tuberose. Or jasmine. I can't tell the difference off the tip of my nose.


Give it a couple of hours and it's almost gone. What's left is a hint of fleurs and a touch of something woody.

The Perfumed Court says: A stunning Floriental fragrance that blends orange flower blossoms, white jasmine and tuberose from India along with white rose, green notes, musk, cumin and nutmeg.

Hans says: It smells earthy. Like incense. Does that make sense? It's incensy. I don't know how to spell that.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

I Changed My Mind Again: I'm Running Away from Home

I've been blithely drifting along, secure in the knowledge that Barack Obama will be on the other end of downtown next week, so I'll be unlikely to be caught in a tear gas attack or a fecal fling.

I'd completely blocked how close Civic Center Park is to my office:

Civic Center Park is where Recreate '68 will stage many of their disruptive activities. I'm guessing it's the most likely site for tear gassing.

[SUMMARY: Hoping for winds out of the north.]

That's OK -- our crack office building security team has been practicing turning the HVAC system off and they can do it in under a minute.§

And we'll have total lockdown if necessary to maintain safety and security.§

Never in my life did I want to have to think about this shit.

I'm laying in a supply of Cheetos and vodka in my desk.

Just in case.
Chinatown - Bond No. 9

Marin says: Interesting. It falls somewhere between incense and the candle department at a Hallmark store.

My first impression was, "Christmas," because it reminds me of those bayberry candles so popular with the Yankee Candle set during the holidays. This should be a bad thing, but I actually like it. It starts out a little too Kool-Aid fruity, but mellows into a sandalwoody, floral fruit. I'm thinking jasmine or tuberoseover sandalwood.

Yeah, I should probably hate this, but it's not too bad. It gets more woody as time goes on and it's almost as much cedar as sandalwood -- dry, rather than sweet. I still smell like a new age gift shop a little, but a *sophisticated* new age gift shop.

Bond No. 9 says: Superpower Meets Supercity: The Emerging Superpower Energy with the Avant Garde Cachet of downtown New York. NOTES: Peach blossoms, gardenia, tuberose, patchouli, cardamom#

The Perfumed Court says: A Floriental†† with top notes of peach blossom and bergamot; middle notes of peony, gardenia, tuberose,$ and orange flower; and base notes of patchouli, cedarwood,$ vanilla, sandalwood,$ guaiac wood‡‡ and cardamom.

Hans says: Sweet like... there's something it smells like... potpourri dish! Like fresh-dried potpourri, if that makes sense. Not like a Glade Plug-in, but the actual bowl.§§

FOOTNOTE (crossed): And their brethren and sistren of all ilks.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): I'm not being snarky or Republican here. They actually have a sister site to called DNC Disruption 08.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Simultaneously horrifying and comforting. On the plus side, we may be able to watch rioters from the locked-down, air-free safety of our own office windows.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Because, while I'm sure jasmine and tuberose are different, I can't tell the difference... maybe I could if they were right next to each other. I dunno. I've never seen them in the same room together. They could be the Batman and Bruce Wayne of flowers.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): I'm quoting. The capitals are all theirs.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): I'm pretty sure that's a semi-technical term, but it sounds gratingly cutesy to me every time I say it in my head.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): What an education. If you put guaiac into Wikipedia, one of the options is stool guaiac test, which tests for fecal occult blood, which sounds like something Recreate '68 might be planning for Civic Center Park. Also? Oil of guaiac was a pre-Renaissance remedy for syphillis. You will never get that question on Jeopardy.

§§FOOTNOTE (turn turn): I'm so glad I work with Hans.

Monday, August 18, 2008

I Haven't Had My Coffee Yet... the contract rider involving "Sheep Tight Fences" seems really funny.

It's Raining, It's Pouring

Despite the rain, I didn't get much knitting done Saturday.

You'd think the dark, raininess would be the perfect backdrop to a day of cosying up in the recliner with a ball of string, male swimmers on the TiVi and maybe a hot toddy of some sort.

Just look at that knitting weather! And this is the sunniest it got all day!

[SUMMARY: Yes, I'm really talking about the weather.]

And the sharpest among you might put together the reason there was so little knitting: I was at work. The lack of urgency by those providing the work has created panic on the back end§ and I was in the office on Saturday.

And Sunday.

And that's OK. Once in awhile, I like to do something that makes me feel really self-righteous like work on Saturday. And Sunday.

I always be sure to send a couple of emails out on the company account so people *know* I was working on Saturday.And Sunday.

[SUMMARY: There's a Loverboy re-mix in there somewhere.]

Anyway, despite all the work, it was a refreshingly knitterly day.

I started out by going to the grand opening of the brand new Origins store in Cherry Creek. I'm not a subscriber to the Cult of Origin,# but they sent coupons in the mail -- one for $25 and one for a free medium whatever-you-want-to-drink from their coffee shop.

No purchase necessary.

As I drove in on empty streets, I figured the rainy weather might keep the crowds down.


I got my tea and wandered around a little. The crowds made it too miserable to do any real power-shopping, which is good for me. I probably could've talked myself into a couple hundred dollars' worth of products if I'd had the time to lollygag around the store and talk to the nice salespeople.

So that was one nice thing. I got my $22.50 tube of moisturising body wash†† and stood in line.

And stood in line.

And stood in line.

[SUMMARY: Never underestimate the power of a free $25.]

And started to wonder if I was in danger of getting a parking ticket in the 2-hour space I'd nabbed.

And started thinking I should have called Tani to see if she wanted to stand in line because these things are tolerable with good company.

And started to think about giving up. At my per-hour wage, $25 didn't seem like that big a draw anymore. But there's that point where you feel you've invested too much time, or you're sure the registers are going to speed up any time or maybe the woman with the four kids is going to get tired of the whining and just GO...‡‡

Then the lady in line behind me started talking to me. Small talk. Then I held her place while she went and got some tea. Then she held my place while I went to the bathroom.

Would you believe we were halfway through the line before she said, "I'd much rather be home knitting right now."

I said, "Me too!"

Then she told me how she was getting errands done in the morning so she could sit in front of the Olympics in the afternoon, and I told her I was heading to work and when I told her I'm in the oil business, it turns out she's from Oklahoma and worked in the industry for quite some time.

Then she said, kinda timidly, "Were you just joking when you said you'd rather be knitting?"

"Oh, no. I'd *much* rather be knitting!"

So we talked about knitting and the hours passed pleasantly until we got to the front of the line.%

Isn't the world a marvelous place sometimes?

Omanthe Yunnan - Hermes

Marin says: So light.

There's some very light floral and fruit, but I can't tell what kind. It smells a little like carnation, but not as cold, and with something a tiny bit deepter and woodier on top -- not that this is a woody scent, but maybe leaves. Or bamboo. Which is what I think of every time I think of a watery wood.

It's incredibly light, but that very light cloud gusts in every now and then so I know it's still there. When I nuzzle my wrists, there's almost nothing, yet there's... something. I'm not sure if I'm in a zen place or I just don't know what the hell I'm talking about.

The Perfumed Court says: Tea, flowers$ and fruit.$ Osmanthe Yunnan is smooth and tart, with a lasting tea note that is perfect for occasions when you want an original perfume that is not heavy, but lasts.

Hans says: I like that one. It's light. It's... I can't put my finger on it. It's refreshing.§§

FOOTNOTE (crossed): And you'd be right.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): 'Cause, y'know... you'd notice that was taken out my office window.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): I am the back end. I'm always the back end. Some day, when I grow up, I want to be the front end.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Passive-aggressive, anyone?

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): I didn't know there was one until I was invited onto their mothership.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): I don't know. It was an impulse. It was free.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): And by "you," I mean, "I."

%FOOTNOTE (percented): It also didn't hurt that Origins people kept bringing around Origins things to keep us entertained while we waited. There was the hand massage and the spearmint refresher stuff and these:

A trial-size tube of their most popular product, a sachet (it's zippered! I can use it again!) filled with lavender and roses and a blackberry bran muffin. That's all that's left of the blackberry bran muffin. I was hungry when I got to the office.

$FOOTNOTE (right on the money!): Ha! Got one!

§§FOOTNOTE (the world keeps turning): I'm giving Hans credit for that -- tea is refreshing, isn't it?

Friday, August 15, 2008

Not My Tale to Tell


So Favourite Bartender had a birthday last Friday.I took him a bottle of wine on Saturday and he told me this very funny story:

He and his girfriend and a bunch of friends were bar-hopping LoDo, when someone said, "Hey, let's go to the titty bar!"%

Brooks's first blush was to worry what his girfriend would think, but she was all for it.

So they went to La Bohème. And someone bought Brooks a lap dance.

The lap dancer sat him down, turned her back to him, straddled him, bent over, then... walked away.

Everybody just sat for a moment, sure she was coming back.


[SUMMARY: Customer service in this country is just going down the tubes.]

As the disgruntled lap dancee, Brooks went to the manager and turned on the charm and drama,§ "My friends paid their hard-earned money to buy me a lap dance... on my BIRTHDAY..."

The manager was largely unmoved by the tragic tale, saying, "Yeah, we'll check the film later. Here's a voucher for your lap dance."

And he gave Brooks a coupon.

Saturday night at the bar, he said, "So... what? I'm supposed go up to any stripper and say, 'I have a coupon...'"

I really wish I could've snapped a pic of the lap dance voucher for you.

I really, really wish I could've gotten some video of Brooks saying, "I have a coupon" in that mildly retarded, slack jawed voice he used.

But it's funny anyway.

[SUMMARY: Well, laugh.]

Borneo 1834 - Serge Lutens (edp)

Marin says: I have a history with this perfume.

See, when I professed my love for patchouli, eBeth told me about this in the comments. Marin be Marin, I rushed over to The Perfumed Court to order some.

A few days later, eBeth and I were at Book Club and she produced hers from her pocket so I could try it. I put a dab on the back of my hand. I started out surreptitiously nuzzling the scented spot, but went to full-on, devil-may-care public snorking as the night wore on. I think I spent a good five minutes doing meditative breathing on it when I got in bed that night.

It was wet as wet could be, like the richest black earth and wet wood just after a rain. The patchouli wove in and out of it with great sensuality and depth. I was enamoured.

Mine arrived in the mail shortly thereafter and went into the heart-shaped perfume dish on my dresser.

It was raining this morning, so I thought it would be a perfect mood accessory. I sprayed some on my wrists and fantasised about a day of secret wrist love.


It went on in a burst of cocoa.¶ Then it deflated. Now it's just kind of flat. And not that wet. Dusty, even. And the patchouli... I don't really get patchouli so much.

I have theories (those of you who already heard my theories can skip to Hans's review -- I know that's why most of you tune in anyway):

  1. Mine sat for several hours in my mailbox. Maybe it got hot and degraded a little.
  2. eBeth gets the little sample vials with the toothpick-like wand in them. I get little spray bottles. Maybe spraying it caused a lot of air to mix in or a finer, thinner coating of scent.
  3. Actually, I thought maybe I was in a different place in my cycle last time, but last time was July 16, so it's right about the same time, hormone-wise. Huh.

Where did my lovely, lovely, intoxicating scent go?

I think I'm going to wait a couple of weeks and try it again.#

The Perfumed Court says: A woody chypre with notes of Indonesian patchouli, floral notes, galbanum, patchouli, cacao$ accord, mahogany, ebony, cardamom, and ciste†† labdanum. Borneo 1834 is an eau de parfum, edp. This is a European exclusive and is not available in the United States.‡‡

Hans says: It smells like cornbread. With honey.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Luck 8/8/08.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Lower Downtown -- the hip part of town.

%FOOTNOTE (percented): I'm betting it was a guy.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): "We'd had a couple of drinks by then," he says. Which may explain why his girfriend was so enthusiastic about seeing naked women.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Not chocolate, mind you -- cocoa.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): 'Cause, you know, if you do the same thing two or three times, maybe you'll get the result you want eventually. Remind me to tell you a story about a goose.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): I found nothing on ciste labdanum. Near as I can tell, "ciste" is Gaellic for "chest." And that doesn't make much sense, does it?

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): I left that in there. That way you'll fully understand why I'm fighting so hard for this to work. Y'know... exclusivity, limited edition, not available anywhere... the stuff that makes Marin dork.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Gimme Ten

Ten reasons I love the Olympics:

  1. Male swimmers
  2. Bob Costas§
  3. The world record line
  4. Architecture
  5. Technology
  6. Fireworks
  7. The torch#
  8. The Olympic Anthem††
  9. The American Anthem‡‡
  10. Hours of socially acceptable, internationally-supported knitting time§§

Lovely - Sarah Jessica Parker

Marin says: It was pleasant but nondescript right out of the bottle. By the time I'd furrowed my brow and sorted out a couple of impressions, it had changed drastically. From what I remember, the first blush was a sort of green, soapy clean with a light flower to it -- like a soft lily. A woody, kinda smoky scent came up from underneath that pretty quickly.

Sorry to sound like a broken record, but when I smell something very light with a touch of discernable wood and random flowers, it always reminds me of toilet paper. I reiterate: this isn't a bad smell. Toilet paper is pretty gentle and pleasant. But I prefer to smell sexy or mysterious or exotic or... hell, even fruity.

This was basically half of The Perfect Scent. Everything I read on perfume blogs¶¶ indicates this is a much-lauded fragrance.% After all the hoopla, I thought it would be more remarkable.

SJP says: Blossom with exotic patchouli, the perfume of paper whites and creamy orchid. Seduce with sensuous cedar, white amber, sultry musk and woods linger. Sparkle with fresh mandarin, bergamot and radiant rosewood rushing into lush lavender and crisp apple martini.

The Perfumed Court says: ...has notes of mandarin, bergamot, rosewood, lavender, apple martini, patchouli, paper whites, orchid, cedar, white amber, musk and woods.

Hans says: It smells like... water.

Did I mention that it doesn't last long at all? Poor Hans got it an hour-and-a-half in and it really does smell like water.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Not exhaustive. Not necessarily in that order.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Duh.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Remember when Ben wanted to name my breasts Keith and Dan? I suggested Bob Costas to complete the holy trinity.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): There's always cool new stuff that comes with the Olympics. It's like the space program used to be, with Tang and space blankets and those astronaut food sticks.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Always cool, but nothing will ever match the flaming arrow torch lighting.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): I sing along. Sometimes I make up words.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): I tear up.

§§FOOTNOTE (shifty): Note how cleverly I steered this into knitblog range. Speaking of knitting, the back on the Vampirates sweater is done and I'm two inches from finishing the first sleeve. Can I get a world record line?

¶¶FOOTNOTE (how will I hold my little head up?): Used to be every obsession had its magazine. Now every obsession has its bloggers.

% FOOTNOTE (percented): And further adding to my suspicion that I'm not particularly sophisticated when it comes to perfumes.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Secret Pal 12 Question 10

Which Olympic event would best describe your knitting/knitting style?

Well, I've already likened my Ravelympics events to swimming events. Let's explore the analogy:

While a swimmer (knitter) may have several different strokes (types of projects) in which they're proficient, it's still just swimming -- on your back or on your front (knit, purl). Sometimes you sprint (knit a pair of baby booties), sometimes you you're in it for the 800m haul (knit an elaborate lace shawl). Sometimes you even do all your strokes at once in the IM (lace AND cables in a sweater).

And you may be able to wow the world with new fastsuit technology (Addi Turbo needles) or develop a kick-ass flip turn (knitting backwards), but when it comes right down to it, it's all just basically kick and stroke (knit and purl).

[SUMMARY: And by you, I mean "Michael Phelps."]

Says the girl with 14 projects on the needles at any given time.

One thing I do want to know: where's my world record line?

[SUMMARY: Oh, the delusions you'll have...]

Cockaigne - Black Pheonix Alchemy Lab§

Marin says: It smells like heavy, sweet, creamy coffee right off the bat and mellows quickly into something a little spicy -- like nutmeg. Or mace. And it lasted a long time, as oils do. It reminds me of Miskatonic University, but not quite as buttery and lush and smelling of books.

BPAL says: The weather is always mild, the wine flows freely, sex is readily available,# and all people enjoy eternal youth. The Land of Plenty, also called Luilekkerland – the Lazy, Luscious Land: milk$ and honey, sweet cakes†† and wine.

Hans says: "It smells spicy. Like cinnamon and nutmeg mixed together."

Later, I told Hans the BPAL accounting of it mentioned milk and honey cakes‡‡ and we decided honey cakes would be a lot like sopaipillas and we could see how that might involve cinnamon and nutmeg. I will admit I did get the honey once I read that and the perfume had rounded down off the coffee a little.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Don't you love the world record line?

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Yeah, I got excited too. Then it became an educational experience.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): BPAL always sends an extra or two. I fantasise they look at my past purchases and say, "Hey, here's a girl who really needs some Cockaigne in her life."

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): I love my wrists, but I'm not *in love* with my wrists.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): I'm calling my travel agent.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Is that anything like honey cakes?

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): I was going from memory. Tells you something about my memory.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Well, Spork Me

You should have seen me, picking this up off the floor of the elevator, carrying it to the kitchen to wash it off... oh, the lengths I go.

After all my fuss in the Great Utensil Debate of 2008, I feel a little sheepish to find sporks are actually the bullies of the kitchen drawer. I don't think I want to be a spork anymore.

Though it might be nice to be on top for a change.

Kelly Calèche - Hermès

Marin says: I am so sad. This is a Jean-Claude Ellena scent. My first JCE was such a revelation, such a pinnacle... I guess I'd hoped it would always be that way.

Turns out it *does* happen to every guy one time or another.

I found this very bitter and green - like one of those sappy grasses or the rind of a lime.

It started very strong, astringent, almost acrid, and only rounded out slightly. Hours of bitter green smell. In the evening, it finally softened into a sweeter, more floral smell, but still green and a little edgy. I'm disappointed how little change there was.

Hermes says: The unexpected caress of leather among flowers. Mimosa, iris, tuberose, and climbing rose. A floral perfume touched by leather.

Hans says: It smells like flowers. [long pause] I'm reverting. With a brain that's not working at all... be sure you tell your blog I'm having a rough day... wait, it smells like that spray stuff [international Hans hand signal for spraying stuff] ...not perfume, of course... like, body spray? Yeah, light and flowery like body spray.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Yeah, that way too. We're all twelve, but apparently we're twelve-year-old cowgirls.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Leather? That was LEATHER?

Monday, August 11, 2008

Play that Funky Anthem, White Boy

Before we talk about all the things I'll be finishing, let's talk about something I'll be starting:

Out of this:

Which wasn't supposed to come in until the beginning of September, but my pusher, Sylvia, lured me to the House of Fuzzy Crack Friday to pick it up.

This yarn is 30% rock.

When Sylia got the sample cards for this, it didn't matter how much yarn I already have. It didn't matter how many projects are already on my needles. I started thinking of knitting something out of rocks.

My geology-lovin' little heart grew three sizes that day.

And I liked the pattern when I saw it in the new Interweave Knits and was considering what to knit it of when the Yarn of Rocks came in.

So happens the pattern's even written for that EXACT GAUGE.

[SUMMARY: Fate.]

And before we get into things I'll be finishing, let's take a quick look at a couple of things I'm in the middle of. Like this:

That's the Malabrigo Lace Secret Pal sent for my birthday, and I finally found a project for it, the somewhat inelegantly-named "Scarf with French trellis border from Weldon's 1890 and bramble leaf center."

I'm calling it Purple Prose.^

Then there are Dad's Low Tide Socks, which now have heels§ and a little bit of leg.

I used a new heel method# that I really like: Short row, with no wrapping and turning and picking up wraps. Look how pretty it is:

But I'm not working on those projects for a little bit while I complete my Ravelympics events.††

Oh, look how much a knitblog this really is!

[SUMMARY: Just showing off.]

I completed one event in WIP Wrestling‡‡ mostly on Saturday,§§ and did fuck-all on my other WIP Wrestling event.¶¶

I wove in the ends on the Malabrigo slippers that are -- technically -- a Mother's Day present for my grandmother, and washed them and stuffed them with washcloths to block them into some form that didn't look like crumpled paper.

I then sat down to knit the acorn embellishment. I determined that said embellishment mostly resembled an oddly-coloured, hand-knit sperm, so I decided to leave the embellishment off.

Sunday morning, when they were dry, I took them out to get artsy photos of them for the blog and Ravelry.

I believe I succeeded in stirring up bees more than I succeeded as an artist, but I think I should get an A for effort.##

[SUMMARY: I did little, yet accomplished so much.]

I had already determined my final event in the Ravelympics would be the Sweater Sprint, because I wanted to knit a skull sweater for Tallest, Hairiest Nephew's birthday.

I found a skull chart on Flickr (the skull designer is on Ravelry under the same name)...

...and then I went to Barnes & Noble at lunch and found a series of kids' books called "Vampirates."

So THN is getting the books too and I'm modifying the skull to have fangs.%

I'm giving myself a little pat on the back††† for remembering how fun and quick the colourwork was on the Monkey Pack and how dreary the miles of solid stockinette was.

I started the back of Vampirates and am saving the skull part for last, just to treat myself.

[SUMMARY: Old dog, new tricks.]

I fully embrace my dorkness in getting excited over something called Ravelympics.

Mostly, I embrace the fact that the threat of public humiliation in the face of failure of the stated objective is a powerful motivator for me. So I'm confident I'll finally finish the Lizard Ridge and have THN's birthday present done on time.

Know thyself.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): OK, I was going there anyway and she hadn't actually managed to get the email out to me before I showed up on her doorstep, thumping a vein and jonesing for yarn, but I'm going with "lured" anyway.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): See the label?

^FOOTNOTE (careted): Note the lifeline. I am smarter than I look. After three frog sessions, I'm smarter than I look.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): No longer dick warmers!

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Technically, the It Happened One Night phase.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): New to me.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Being a competitor is really hard. You have to devote yourself to the competition. You can't be distracted by rock yarn.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Grandma's Blues, the 100m freestyle of my WIP events.

§§FOOTNOTE (flip turn): Lizard Ridge, the 800m IM of my WIP events.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (two little Ravletes on the podium): I'm disciplined, not insane.

##FOOTNOTE (pounding to the finish line): Kinda like the Special Ravelympics.

%FOOTNOTE (percented): I have it on good authority that I'm not just playing to my own inner eight-year-old boy. THN will be thrilled. Brother and eBeth both say so.

†††FOOTNOTE (gold, silver, bronze): Another one.

Friday, August 8, 2008

It's Like This, Cat:

Bag Lady Kathryn wanted to have dinner at the Coral Room last night, but she bolted before I was finished with my wine, so I said I was going to hang around for a few minutes.

Then George§ and Candice came in with Dena and they invited me to come sit with them and I did and we got to talking and drinking and drinking and then they wanted to go down to High Pac and listen to some band from Alabama and did I want to come and I did and then it was 1:30 in the morning, so...'s 7:30 and I'm going to go knit in front of the Olympics for a brief spell and go to bed early.

Welcome to another scorching hot Friday night at Chez Barfly.

Miskatonic University - Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab

Marin says: I am in love with myself again.

Well, mostly I'm in love with my wrists.

The coffee smell is heavenly and somehow buttery. I feel like a Werther's candy.

As it spreads and mellows, I'm getting more old paper and wood. I can actually smell that slightly sweet, musty-woody scent of books yellowed with age.

The buttery note is fading into leather or floorwax or some other slightly oily, tangy scent. Oh, wait... definitely leather. Leather and old books with a cup of coffee with cream -- just gone cold -- sitting nearby.

Oh! Wait! I got it! My dad has smoked a pipe for years. He has pipe tobacco that smells like this -- kinda woody and sweet. Gosh, I'm happy right now.

BPAL says: The scent of Irish coffee, dusty tomes# and polished oakwood halls.$

Hans says: "I can smell it from here.†† It smells like caramel."

[international Hans sign for "bring me your wrist."]

"Oh, yeah. Caramel to the max."‡‡

FOOTNOTE (crossed): I fully intend to blame this whole thing on Kathryn.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): She had to pack for an early morning flight -- it's not like she abandoned me, though in the spirit of "blaming this on Kathryn," I think it's downright saintly for me to admit this.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): George and I are going to open a brothel in Rifle, Colorado. We're going to make a billion dollars of the oil roughnecks, then I'm going to get indicted and write a sexy, scathing, tell-all book about my experience and retire to the House of Fuzzy Crack.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Cold coffee smells different from hot coffee.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): OK, I'd read this and remember the coffee and books part, so it's not like I was a genius about picking out notes.

$FOOTNOTE (right on the money): Ha! Got one! I didn't remember the part about the polished floors, but I did say "floorwax."

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): The doorway.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): On beyond "soap."

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Yes or No

I got this from my darling cousin Jacquelyn's blog, under the blogtitle "Simplemente Sí, o No."

I want to footnote the beejebus out of it.

I want to tell you stories. I want to explain. I want to qualify.

In some cases, I want to defend myself.

But I feel the spirit of the thing is to leave some mystery. Yes or No. No stories.

[SUMMARY: I'm showing a lot of restraint and I intend to get credit for it.]

Taken a picture naked? Yes
Made money illegally? No
Had a one night stand? No
Been in a fist fight? Yes
Slept with your best friend? Yes
Had sex in a public place? No
Ditched work to have sex? No
Slept with a member of the same sex? Yes
Seen someone die? Yes
Ran from the police? No
Woke up somewhere and not remember how you got there? No
Worn your partner's unmentionables? No
Fallen asleep at work? Yes
Used toys in the bedroom? Yes
Ran a red light? Yes
Been fired? Yes
Been in a car accident? Yes
Pole danced or done a striptease? Yes
Loved someone you shouldn't? Yes
Sang karaoke? Yes
Done something you told yourself you wouldn't? Yes
Laughed so hard you peed your pants? No
Caught someone having sex? No
Kissed a perfect stranger? Yes
Shaved your partner? No
Given your private parts a nickname? Yes
Ever gone in public without underwear? Yes
Had sex on a roof top? No
Played chicken? No
Mooned/flashed someone? Yes
Do you sleep naked? Yes
Blacked out from drinking? No
Felt like killing someone? No
Had sex more than 5 times in one day? Yes
Been with someone because they were in a band? No
Taken 10 shots of liquor in a day? Yes
Shot a gun? No
Gone outside naked? Yes

Parfum Sacre (edp) - Caron

Marin says: Honestly? The first impression was "Robitussin." Very heavy alcohol and deep, black almost cherry scent. After a few seconds, it smells mostly like amber and vanilla, but with a backdrop of black licorice or cocoa.

And Aqua Net.

It's highly evocative of Aqua Net, not just for the kinda sweet, kinda alcohol smell of it, but because I can almost taste it, just like when there's hairspray in the air.

Oh, It's definitely too sweet for my taste. In fact, I think it just went sugar cookie about two minutes ago (that's about 45 minutes into the roll-out, for those of you scoring at home.)

Epilogue: I tried like hell to wash this stuff off. Several times. If you liked this scent, it would be an excellent investment, since even soap and water can't erase it.

The Perfumed Court says: The notes are vanilla,$ myrrh, civet, cedarwood, lemon, pepper, mace,$ cardamom, orange blossom, rose, jasmine, and rosewood. This is a comfort scent. While not as rich as the extrait, it is a lovely woody, warm perfume.

Hans says: Smells like Bed, Bath & Beyond. Or the Body Shop. It's seriously soapy.§

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Of course, I've already told so many of these stories, I feel I pre-cheated the rules. I can't lie, it's a good feeling.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Before you laugh, light black licorice isn't too far off light strains of cocoa to my nose. Sure, if they were strong enough to be easily identifiable, I might not think they smelled so much alike. There's something astringent and sweet (but not sugary) about them both.

$FOOTNOTE (on the money): Ha! Got one! And may I say, "Holy shit!" When I was reading about mace on Wikipedia, thinking it may be that alcohol/astringent thing I'm getting, I scroll down to the "essential oils" section of the entry to find it's *used in cough syrup*. Damn, I'm good. Well, mostly kinda smart-ass, but if your ass is as smart as mine, it doesn't really matter if your head and your nose can get together on this stuff.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): There's that boys and soap thing again. Man, I got no soap at all with this one. Maybe the astringent thing reads "soap" to Hans...

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

I Ran Out of Footnote Symbols

We all knew it would happen someday.

At least we get to start fresh with a whole new post and a whole new set of symbols.

I do have a perfume review today. I have a perfume review every day for the forseeable future, because I have a perfume problem that has manifested itself as about seventy tiny little vials of perfumes sitting in a heart-shaped dish§ on my dresser.

And did I mention my obsessive nature?

[SUMMARY: OCD, light on the C.]

But first, for Anna-Liza, whose bat comment seemed to have enormous subtext and reminded me of this:

Need I point out there are two definitions of "depends" here that could make for a really funny joke if one was so inclined?

[SUMMARY: I think I'm funny in a really subtle way.]

Au Thè Blanc# - Bvlgari†† (edp)‡‡

Marin says: The initial whiff was very aldehyde (read: borerline Chanel No. 5), but it quickly calmed to very nearly nothing. Like, in five minutes. I kept snorking on my coffee§§ to clear my nose's palate¶¶ and try to catch something.

After a half-hour, it kinda blossomed, but the roll-out smells like the last legs of a strong aldehyde -- perfumey and chemical-sweet musk rather than any identifiable notes.

These tend to finish powdery, which is not my favourite thing, though never truly unpleasant.

The Perfumed Court says: A gorgeous floral-woody-musk fragrance with notes of artemisia leaves, ambrette, white pepper, musk$ and woody amber.

Hans says: You smell like my mom.

Some of you may be wondering, "How does Marin have hours and hours to devote to her blog every day. Doesn't she work? Doesn't she work in the oil business? Isn't she busy finding oil to lower my gas prices?## Hey! Where are my lower gas prices?"

A legitimate line of questioning. Allow me to explain.

I am working on yet another divestiture. To make a long story short, I must wait for the Billings††† office to provide me with the properties they wish to divest before I can adequately research the information I am to provide.

They are dragging their feet.‡‡‡

The deadline is looming.§§§

My blood pressure is so high my eyes are about to pop out of my head and run screaming around my desk.###

Thus, I blog.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): And, y'know... breaking up the vast verbiage to save you the eye-strain. I'm thoughtful that way.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): *ahem* Not to mention the eight or so full-size bottles I kept around before this obsession really took wing. Oh... and the back-up bottle of Sake (I'm pretty sure nothing smells sexier on me than Sake) I keep in the closet because I'm terrified they'll discontinue it soon since it was came out the same time the Memoirs of a Geisha movie and may be a sort of tie-in, thus limited of shelf life.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): It's purple. Don't judge.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Yeah, I'm a joy as a girlfriend too.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Which I originally had on my spreadsheet (yes, I have a perfume spreadsheet) as Au de Blanc. Then I realised it was Au the Blanc, which I thought was odd, mixing English and French that way. Then I found out it was Au Thè Blanc, "white tea."

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Bvlgari does not acknowledge its fragrance department. They only cop to leather and accessories, so they don't get a say in their perfume review.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Unless I note it's an edp, or unless it's BPAL (which I believe are all essential oil mixtures), it's an edt. In case it matters to you.

§§FOOTNOTE (waft): That's what they make you do in the candle store to clear your nose palate. It works better with beans than with brewed coffee.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (nose holes): Surely there's a special word for that.

$FOOTNOTE (on the money): Ha! Got one!

##FOOTNOTE (pounded like a head on a desk): Days like today, I feel I've driven the price of gas up by two cents a gallon just by being largely unproductive and getting paid for it.

†††FOOTNOTE (triple crossed like a heist movie): As in "Montana," not as in "invoices."

‡‡‡FOOTNOTE (train tracks to hell): read: Interacting like the three stooges on amphetamines but providing no useful assistance.

§§§FOOTNOTE (seriously, people, I'm getting dizzy): Two weeks. It was going to be almost impossible to do in three weeks. Now we have two weeks. OK, let's all take a deep breath (yes, you too -- I need all the deep breathing I can get now). It has been pointed out -- by me, by my supervisor, by my supervisor's supervisor -- that if they make it impossible, it *is* impossible and that's not my fault and Billings will just have to live with a later sale... but they're still going to get the info to us and I'm still going to try like hell to get it all done by the noted deadline. Did I mention Hans is in North Carolina for the rest of the week and the computers are going to be down for five days just before the deadline? I need an aspirin...

###FOOTNOTE: No real footnote... that's just the pounding of my head. Is it getting louder?

Secret Pal 12 Question 9

In many communities, "the fair"† is a great place to visit and spend time with your family. It's also where many have entered one product or another (jams, cakes, even knitting)...

Have you ever entered your knitting (or anything else) in the fair?Would you ever consider it?

The first question is easy: no. I've never even been to a fair -- not the kind that has pie-baking contests and knitting displays, in any case.

The second question begs a little explanation and a tiny story.^

See, there's no Denver County Fair.@ There is a Colorado State Fair, but it's all the way the hell in Pueblo and I've never found a compelling reason to go to it. My extremely limited understanding of the Colorado State Fair revolves around two things:
  1. It's all about livestock and D-list musical acts% and, while I like looking at livestock, I don't want to drive 120 miles to Pueblo to do it, and
  2. I once kuyped the cow from Colorado State Fair advertising to make Brother a fantasy baseball logo.§

Honestly? I read Stacey's account of entering her Lizard Ridge¶ in the North Carolina State Fair last year and my interest was piqued.

North Carolina has its Fair in a very reasonable October.+ Colorado's is in August.# So when I checked into it in October, prompted by Stacey's adventure, there was very little information. It was all gone until next year. Um... this year.

This question wound me up again, so I did a little research†† and found... there's still very little information.‡‡

So I emailed Debbie at the Colorado State Fair. If I find anything interesting,§§ I'll pass it on. As it stands, I'm sure it's too late to do anything for this year, as the Fair starts August 22.¶¶

Shame. It woulda gotten me out of the city for the DNC.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): [sic] The superfluous quotes are making my teeth itch. I don't want you to think I chose them.

@FOOTNOTE (atted): You can check. I'll wait here.

^FOOTNOTE (careted): There's *always* a story, isn't there?

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): 120 miles. And I'd have to get past the temptation of all those fossils and scenic byways, knowing it was hot, dusty, small-town Pueblo at the end of the trip.

%FOOTNOTE (percented): I freely admit this may be completely off-base. Though a quick glance at the concert package for this year's Fair tells us I may be closer than my ignorance should allow.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): All his fantasy teams are Cult of the World, COW for short. The Cult of the World cheer is, of course, "Moo." Also? This year's logo? No cow. Thus:

In case you were wondering, my fantasy team is the Beasts of Burden, or BOB for short. The BOB mascot is Donkey. The BOB cheer is the Outkast song, "B.O.B." BOB likes long walks on the beach, boys with a sense of humour, vodka and kittens. You're welcome.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Did I mention I'm going to finish my flippin' Lizard Ridge this month? I've entered the WIP Wrestling event in the Ravelympics. Yes, I am that dork. Of course, if it's anything like Greco-Roman wrestling, I get to grapple with sweaty menz. Dontcha wish your dorkness was hot like mine?

+FOOTNOTE (plussed): Just sayin'.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Just sayin' again.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): We're all about accuracy here at the Rickety Blog.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Question: In this day and age, why wouldn't you post everything you have on your website? Why have information available only by booklet and only by emailing someone? OK, end rant.

§§FOOTNOTE (tilt-a-whirl!): Like it's all knitting or there's no knitting and we need to stage a protest.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (are those alpacas at the Fair?): And even if I got a wild yarn up my ass, y'know... Ravelympics.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Monkey Business

I am not likely to ever get political here. I have my politics. You probably wouldn't like them.I don't care enough about either your politics or mine to make politics a rift between us.

So this isn't political, so much as news stuff. I just want y'all to keep that in mind. Don't assume that my using "shit" and "Democrat" in the same blogbit has anything to do with anything.

As some of you may be aware, the Democratic National Convention will be in Denver shortly.

[SUMMARY: Urgh.]

Civic Center Park will be an even scarier place than it already is.

Our office building will be locked, accessible only via key card all day, every day. Many companies have installed serious security systems in preparation for the onslaught of wound up, emotionally- and politically-charged people.%

Local businesses near the Convention ground zero have been notified they may be shut down, locked down or otherwise screwed with if security becomes an issue.

Denver Water puttered through downtown a couple of weeks ago and put locking caps on the fire hydrants.§

And the City Council passed an ordinance yesterday calling bodily fluids illegal.

OK, it's both broader¶ and more specific# than that, but it's funnier and more shocking the way I say it.

[SUMMARY: I think I'm funny. And sometimes shocking.]

So the radical fringe is officially banned from maintaining feces bombs in Denver.^

While this is oh-so-comforting, I'm torn between renting my house out for $1200 a night during this ordeal to get *something* out of it, and just battening down the hatches and skipping town.

Hermès - Un Jardin sur le Nil (Hermèssence)

Marin says: Started with a bitter green scent, like when you break some thick grasses and they have sap rather than just juice... reminiscent of the smell of multi-vitamins. It was so light that even though I didn't particularly like it, I was OK with it.

Then the roll-out started.

Oh, my gosh, this is a gorgeous perfume.

It's lightly floral†† (water lily? lotus?) tempered by a dry wood,‡‡ but the greenish scent lingered behind that. For a half-hour or so, it was like lemon verbena, with a hint of bitter and wood. Then it turned woody-grassy, but the floral lingered behind that. I've honestly never experienced a real "roll out" like that before in a perfume. I'm astonished and delighted.§§

Hermes says: A perfume of light and life, generous and sparkling. A bottle reflecting the shimmering green and ochre tints of the banks of the Nile River appreciated by women and men alike.

The Perfumed Court says: A fruity floral scent with notes of green mango,¶¶ lotus flower,$ aromatic rushes,$ incense## and Sycamore wood.$

Hans says: It smells like lemon!

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Don't paint us all with the same brush. It's funny to me that so many so-called liberals are so narrow-minded when it comes to Republicans, while Republicans -- long thought to be the narrow-minded ones -- are well aware that there are degrees and flavours of Democrats. Though one of the funniest politicist (is that the political version of racist?) remarks ever came from The Boy, back when we were actually dating instead of just fucking through the drunken nights of everybody else's celebrations*:

"So the president gave a speech last night."

"So I hear."

"You didn't watch?"

"Nope. I try to avoid Bush where I can."

"Huh. I thought you'd invite your Republican friends over and pop popcorn or something."

*FOOTNOTE WITHIN A FOOTNOTE (asterisked, as always): Wasn't that evocative? How come I can evoke about sweaty, ill-advised, illicit sex but I can't communicate what the hell water frickin' lily smells like to me?

Reminds me of the trophy for getting the lowest possible score in the bowling tournament (I threw a 67. Over two games. I'm a *terrible* bowler), which was inscribed, "Stick with what you know."

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Y'all know how I love to keep you informed.

%FOOTNOTE (percented): 'Specially oil companies, with their double-whammy of highly sensitive, proprietary information and their current target-worthy social position as Evil Overlords.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Five years of drought and never locking down the hydrants until the wingnuts come to town.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): In that it also encompasses cement, barricades, Super-Soakers filled with Kool-Aid and anything that can be used as an assault mechanism or barrier.

^FOOTNOTE (careted): You may think that goes without saying, but there was a news story a couple of weeks ago wherein police were tipped off to a home in Denver that was the site for the stockpiling of human waste for use at the Convention.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): In that it specifies possession with the intent to harm or hinder. Funny note: Denver police have to prove whatever material was intended for sinister use in order to enforce the ordinance. If you have a bucket of human waste in a political crowd, what other use would there be?

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Water lily? Lotus? Sheesh, I wish I knew what those actually smelled like rather than just guessing at what I think of as water lily or lotus.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Y'know -- not sweet, heavy or wet like some woods... more like the woodpile out back than the depths of the rainforest. And not as distinctive as cedar.

§§FOOTNOTE (round and round and round she goes): For the record, this is one of the two perfumes that is the subject of the book I got from eBeth for my birthday (The Perfect Scent, by Chandler Burr.)

¶¶FOOTNOTE (stoppers!): They talked about this a LOT in the book. It may be that bitter smell I got to begin with. Then again, it could be the lemony smell. I don't know what a grove of green mangoes smells like. Is there an "E" in mangos?

$FOOTNOTE (on the money): Ha! Got one! And, yes, I'm counting aromatic rushes as sappy grass, taking full credit for blundering into lotus and surely sycamore is a perfectly adequate dry wood... even though I have no idea what a sycamore smells like. Or even looks like. I don't think we have sycamores in Colorado.

##FOOTNOTE (pounding like a perfume headache): Huh. *Never* got that. And I thought I was all sensitive to incense.

NOTE: In case you didn't get it, I'm really not against the Democrats as a group.

I'm against large, life-changing groups of people overrunning my world and I'm whole-heartedly against wing-nut protestors and feces-flingers, who will be out en masse at the convention. Normal, everyday Democrats are OK by me.

Some of my best friends are normal, everyday Democrats.

Please don't go all politco-guerrilla on me.

And I don't have to explain the title, right? Y'all get the clever reference?