Wednesday, November 26, 2008
This chick has a baby face and a very feminine body. Or feeble.
Or feeble, indeed. Nobody ever offers me naked men.
Happy Thanksgiving, everybody.
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): Thank the holy fucking cats it's a Wednesday that could be mistaken for a Friday.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
At least that's what Mom always used to tell me when I'd start a day's skiing.
"When we were in Gunnison,‡ the broken legs always started coming in around 5:30 because those skiers had to get one. last. run. in before the lifts closed and they were too tired. You don't need to take that last run."
If Mom was watching me knit lace, she'd probably say the same thing.
[SUMMARY: Holidays bring out the Mom in me.]
I swear it's two steps forward, one back.
Or sometimes one forward, three back.§ Depends on how late I'm lace knitting.
[SUMMARY: Maths. It sounds like maths.¶]
See, it's a 10-row pattern. I try to always work five rows at a time so I know where to start when I pick it up again.
Except sometimes I'm all groovy and rhythm-addled and I think I should finish a whole pattern or start a new one at, say, 10:00.
That's where the trouble starts.
Currently, I am ignoring the Purple Prose scarf, as I appear to have dropped a stitch that ran down three or four rows and I haven't had the motivation or presence of mind to sit down and figure out where the YOs are and where the k2togs are so I can pick it up all pretty.
I also haven't been able to bring myself to frog and tink my way back to pristine ground.
I *really* need to start a mindless knitting project so I have something to do after ten o'clock that won't land me in the metaphorical ER.
[SUMMARY: Deep. Very deep for a Tuesday.]
Anyway, just thought I'd let you know I'm still knitting.#
Cabaret - Grès (edp)
Marin says: This perfume is confirming and solidifying an internal game I play with myself.% You've played along too, but maybe you didn't know it.
There are scents that are remarkably similar, only I *think* most people wouldn't agree. I can't think of any off the top of my head, except... this is supposed to be a woody rose or a rose chypre,†† depending on who you read, but I get a remarkably transparent patchouli.
Patchouli was my first guess,‡‡ and when I read roseroserose§§ all over the Innernets, I closed my eyes, breathed deep and said, "Oh, yeah. I can see that."¶¶ Some roses do have that itchy, sharp, camphoresque smell like patchouli. But this one isn't as thick and wet as "other" patchoulis -- it's dry and, yes, woody. Like rose and cedar, maybe.
Which, by the by, smells like a remarkably transparent patchouli.
It starts in camphor, spreads out into a dry, pencil shaving cedar with a hint of something sweeter, then brings the powder up from the rose as the amber rounds up from the depths to finish it off.
I rather like it.^ And it falls in the increasingly rare category## of "wearable" for me.
Grès says: Michel Almairac, the famous perfume creator, has pursued his vision to create a new classic based on rare natural materials. The result is a truly exceptional woody-floral fragrance with an ambery inflexion.
Hans says: I'm losing it. They're all starting to smell alike. Unless... is this a popular thing? [yes] It smells familiar. That's what I have to say about it. It's familiar. What is it? [well, I get a lot of camphor, so it's probably patchouli]. Yeah! I get camphor too. You can tell them I get that too. [You know I quote you directly, right?]†††
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): I have some weird theatre-skiing continuum scrambling my clever cortex right now. I need an Advil.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Ski college town. Hatching ground of your dear ol' AntiM. And where I went to college. Legend has it it's where I must go to spawn and die.
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): I'm very suspicious there's a lot of four in there, actually.
¶FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): And fours.
#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Which makes this... still a knitblog!
%FOOTNOTE (percented): Raise your hands: who went all twelve on me there? Besides the playing with myself thing, this also marks the taking of my little perfume hobby to a whole new level: decanting and swapping perfumes. This is in a batch of perfumes recently swapped with my very worst influences. Yay, obsession!
††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): And if I had bothered to brush up on chypre *before* I linked it for your convenience I might have noticed three things:
- Chypre is French for cypress, and cypress is a sharpish scent that, according to some very welcome knowledge laid upon me by the inimitable Nathan Branch, may have some aesthetic common ground with camphor/patchouli, being sharpish,
- Modern chypres may include patchouli, and
- Saying "woody rose" and "rose chypre" is a little like trying to distinguish between a cheese sandwich and bread with cheese.
I'll do my research up front next time. You're welcome.
‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): And it may have to do with having just read Nathan's (yes, I feel we're on a first name basis) email on benzoin vs. camphor vis-a-vis patchouli. Hey, if I wasn't a slave to the power of suggestion, I wouldn't be so enthralled by Limited Edition! Limited Quantities! Goodie bag for the first fifty attendees!
§§FOOTNOTE (spiralling petals): That one's for you, Mary Kay.
¶¶FOOTNOTE (like stoppers in a flacon, so are the days of our lives): Um... smell that.
^FOOTNOTE (careted): And I love the bottle, as pictured on the website:
##FOOTNOTE (there's my pounds of flesh): You know how people tell their kids some things are for holding and some things are for looking? Well, the more I smell, the more I think some perfumes are for sniffing and some are for wearing. And those that are for sniffing aren't all bad -- just not our kind, darling.
†††FOOTNOTE (triple dipping): All this took place before I did my research, of course. Hans has been subsequently educated.
Monday, November 24, 2008
I happen to be reading Succubus Dreams† even as we speak,‡ so when I saw this poster for the movie Hitman,§ I almost drowned in a wave of déjà vu.¶
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): Don't judge. It's escapist and occasionally prurient, but it beats all shit out of those awful Twilight books.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Well, not precisely. Even as we speak, I'm "working."
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Reading a largely unrelated article. Hey, I made the air-quotes when I said "working." We're all about truth in advertising here at the Rickety Blog. And may I add, if we weren't waiting on the labyrinthian cluster-fuck that is our ESL office in Montana, I'd actually have something to do or I'd be able to go home and get off the suburban welfare that is my job at this moment. Even as we speak. That is.
¶FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): And purple, purple prose.
Rickety Blog... now with 20 times more footnotes than content!
Seriously... 607 words in footnotes, 30 words above the fold.
Friday, November 21, 2008
We think http://theantim.blogspot.com is written by a woman (82%).†
I am grateful to the GenderAnalyzer for not finding me too butch, even though it hypothesised Ann Coulter is a man.‡
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): I'm pretty sure that outstanding 18% is from Wednesday's post, when, despite the fact that it has "pink" in the title, I talked about packages and video games and used the term "chickless dicks."
‡FOOTNOTE (cross dressed): Don't get too smug, it thought Katie Couric was a man too.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Lorain: How long have you been at St. Mary?
Marin: Almost a year-and-a-half. I showed up July 2007.
L: Wow. It seems like you've been here forever.
The elevator arrives.
M: Some days, I would totally agree with you.
ride ride ride
L: Your floor. Have a good day.
M: You too, Lorain.
L: Oh, no! Marin, your...
Elevator doors close.
I batted at my hair, tried to look down my back, brushed my shoulders to remove spiders or other things that would make Lorain go, "Oh, no!"
I walked back toward my office and stopped off next door.
"Avis, do I have something on my back? Or in my hair?"
"No, I don't see anything."
"Maybe I got it, then. Lorain tried to catch me, but the elevator doors closed before she could tell me what was wrong."
"Looks OK to me."
I turned to walk out of her office.
"That's what Lorain said."†
"You have a rip in your pants. Your butt is showing."‡
I reached down and sure enough.¶ Pasty white butt flapping in the breeze.§
So I yanked my sweater down, crab-walked to the break room and grabbed the sewing kit. I locked myself in the office and sat half-naked in my chair in my downtown corporate office,# mending the rip.
The good news? The repair job was invisible.
The bad news? Lorain may be scarred for life.
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): Yes, I did think, "That's what she said." Thank you for asking.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Thong. So you don't have to ask.
¶FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): This is not the first time. You may remember a blogpost cleverly titled "Ass." Same rip, same place. Apparently, the stitching on the pockets is like a "tear here" perforation over time.
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): In the interest of full disclosure (heheheheh), when I got out of the car that morning, I had a weird feeling that turned out to be a pair of underwear stuck inside the leg of my jeans. I did not have the weird feeling that I was mooning all of downtown as I walked to the office.
#FOOTNOTE (pounded): An experience I highly recommend if you can find a way to swing it.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Last night, there was a small, square box on the welcome mat and I got all excited, only it wasn't the box I was expecting.†
My friends at Nintendo sent me another present.‡
[SUMMARY: Better lucky than good.]
Let me give you a little background on my relationship with video games.
Way back in the dawn of the 80s, when Pac Man and Tron started taking over from Pong and pinball, I resisted.
You know that scene in Say Anything where the skate dudes are hanging out in the parking lot talkin' 'bout bitches and Lloyd says, "I got a question. If you guys know so much about women, how come you're here at the Gas 'n' Sip on a Saturday night completely alone drinking beers with no women anywhere?" And there's that little pause and Joe says, "Bye choice, man," and they all chime in like, yeah, I meant to do this?§
Yeah, I resisted like Joe and his chickless dicks chose to fly stag.
I "resisted" because I was lousy at all those TiVi screen games and there may not have been enough quarters in the world for me to put the time in to get good. So I stuck with pinball, whose low-tech charm and straight-forward, transparent game play suited my Luddite sensibilities.
With pinball, I could accidentally win at least part of the time.
If I had been cooler, I probably would have turned my nose up when my friends went to conquer Galaga. I might have played the Velvet Underground card¶ and claimed a longtime love of pinball. Maybe could've spouted something about the digitising of America or the lack of punkish grit in Centipede, if I'd been really on my game.
I wasn't remotely cool, though, so I readily admitted I didn't get video games and was no good at them and I'll be over here in the corner with the pinball machines, let me know when you're ready to leave.
We did have an old Atari system at home,# and eventually Dad hooked it up to the big screen TiVi. I got pretty good at Space Invaders and Q*Bert†† through home study, though I still never played them in the arcade.
But I never played any of the Mario games. I certainly haven't played Everquest‡‡ or Prisoner of Zenda or anything like that. I like the puzzle gams on my DS. I can happily do electronic word search and hidden picture games for hours.
Actually, since I'm perfectly capable of starting in on computer solitaire and looking up to find it's four o'clock in the morning and I have been sitting on my foot for six hours and it got really dark... well, it's probably best I don't get too involved in anything too involved.
[SUMMARY: In which I sound cooler with every passing word.]
Only now I have Kirby.
You'll forgive me if I tell you Kirby is a lot like Mario Brothers and it really isn't. It looks like it to me.
Kirby runs around different levels, eating cherries and bananas and fighting with chickens and sometimes he sucks things in and he can spit them out at his foes. Sometimes he sucks his foes in and if he swallows them, he gains their special powers.§§
He can go through doors.
And up ladders.
And when he rides the star, it takes him far away to other ladders and foes and cherries.
There's underwater stuff.
I find little, pink Kirby weirdly compelling and charming.
I cleared a couple of levels last night. Mostly, I just ran like mad, fought with no strategy or grace and went through every door I found. Despite having no idea what the actual objectives might be, I managed to reach them.
[SUMMARY: Better lucky than... oh, wait, did I already say that?¶¶]
Come to think of it, that's how I play pinball too.
Kama - Farmacia SS. Annunziata dal 1561
Marin says: Powdery. Not in a wholly bad way. There's something really salty running under that classic powdery rose smell. Vanilla too. Rich, warm vanilla, not sugar cookie vanilla. A hint of patchouli - mostly camphorous (like Carmex). The longer it sits on me, the saltier it gets (like Play-Doh).
It's kind of olfactorily pornographic when it's salty -- like an intimate bodily fluid.
Luckyscent says: A mysterious veil of rose$ and musk that hovers close to the skin, Kama is all about nuance and whispers. A hint of grapefruit, a delicate dusting of rice powder, the faintest suggestion of salt$ and ink -- all working with your skin to create a subtle aura of seductive grace that fans of understated scents will adore. Even typical powerhouses like vanilla$ and patchouli$ tiptoe in silk slippers here, adding watercolor washes of sweetness and earthiness without disturbing the feather-soft layer of rose petal and musk that makes your skin smell like you just might be an angel. Kama notes: Petit grain, red grapefruit, dog rose, rice powder, patchouli, musk notes, vanilla, ambergris
Hans says: It has that stuff that smells like baby powder. What's that? Aldehyde, right. [Hans sign language for give me another sniff] I want to say it smells brown, but I don't know what that means.## This is what brown would smell like. Musty, musky brown. But I don't know if it's actually musky.
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): Yes, my Sister of the Travelling iPod, erstwhile girlfriend of Jay Smooth, Nintendo got my hopes up and it wasn't your package. They did redeem themselves by sending me a present, though, so I'm prepared to forgive.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Oh, Nintendo, you shouldn't have!
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): If you check way back to the beginning of that sentence, it is, indeed, one sentence and a question at that.
¶FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Y'know... where every musician claims to be strongly influenced by Velvet Underground, even though VU is about half unlistenable, they're just such an iconic touchstone of American music that everybody wants a scrap of their shroud. VU is to the Jonas Brothers as pinball is to Marin, c. 1980.
#FOOTNOTE (pounded): By all rights, I probably should have been the coolest kid on the block, given we had video games in our home in 1977. Some of us just shed cool like a duck sheds water.
††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Q*Bert on a 60" screen is like a Mack truck going down the stairs of the Philadelphia Art Museum.
‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Evercrack.
§§FOOTNOTE (whirling blades of doom!): Take your pick, Kim.
¶¶FOOTNOTE (two heads are better than mine): I think we have a theme.
$FOOTNOTE (on the money!): Ha! Got one!
##FOOTNOTE (tic tac d'oh): I assured Hans if scents can be labeled "green," brown is a valid option.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
In any case, a very inspirational trip leading to an appropriate blogtitle. Totally worth all the hassle.¶
Last week, I had some earnest discussion about going to the gym. I was even going to go talk to personal trainers one night. Only I couldn't find my gym card.
Which may tell you a little something about how often it gets used.#
[SUMMARY: Blue moons and flying pigs.]
So I went to the 24 Hour Fitness website to order a new one. Technology-wise, 24HF is a step behind the world, and their website is surprisingly unhelpful.
First, I had to enter my membership number. Which I don't have. Because it's on my membership card.
The next step was to call customer service in Bangalor and get said number.
Then plug it into the website.††
Then enter my name, address and phone.‡‡
Then write a paragraph on why I needed a new card.§§
Then receive instructions to print out a form¶¶ and mail it, along with a check## for $10 to an address in California, where they would hold High Council to determine if I am worthy enough to receive a new card in four to six weeks.
[SUMMARY: Customer slavery.]
So I closed my web browser without completing the process and vowed to make a concerted effort to find the original card.
I received a new membership card in the mail last night.
I believe this is the universe's way of telling me to get to the gym already.
[SUMMARY: I hate it when the justification goes the wrong way.]
Hmmm... maybe this could count as another miracle under my belt.
Osmanthus - The Difference Company
Marin says: I tried this while Hans was in Thailand, with the idea that he would have to sit and olfact a whole assload of perfumes when he got back. I re-tried it today when I made him smell it.
Osmanthus is one of those things I don't know. What does osmanthus smell like, all on its own? This is the second Osmanthus I've smelled and I don't think it smells anything like the other one. This is like a SweeTart, but soapier. It started out more botanical, but as many of these things go, it's become increasingly soapy/musky.†††
Second time around, I was intrigued by a delicate lime -- almost like lime leaves rather than lime juice -- and a light, elusive floral. Then the floral roared up and I smell like lipstick and cheap rose perfume. If Bonne Belle made rose Lipsmackers, it would go something like this. It's surprisingly strong for a Jean Claude Ellena scent.‡‡‡
The Perfumed Court says: An elegant fragrance that with delightfully fruity,$ floral$ notes of osmanthus, green leaf,$ bergamot,$ orange, mandarinee, rose,$ baies roses,$ castoreum, hay and musk.$
Hans says: That smells a lot like that one yesterday.
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): Greek for "assload."
%FOOTNOTE (percented): I am not categorically opposed to Jesus. I am, however, categorically opposed to bumper stickers.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Including, "Real Men Love Jesus" in a "Frankie Say Relax" graphic format. I think most of you are old enough to remember Frankie and his Relax shirts.
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Particularly since the saintly asshole rode my bumper, whipped around me, cut me off, then somehow managed to cut me off twice more -- howintheHELLdidhegetbehindme -- on the way in to downtown.
¶FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): I only wish I was being funny there. Sometimes my devotion to clever blogthings (read: what I think of as clever blogthings) overrides better reason.
#FOOTNOTE (pounded): I believe the exact answer is "twice in the last two years."
††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Because "Melanie," the nice Mumbaian woman who gave me my membership number couldn't help me with a new card.
‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Check me: shouldn't this have come up with my membership number?
§§FOOTNOTE (fine Spencerian script, like I do all my essays): OK, a tiny exaggeration here, but I did have to give the specific reason I was requesting a replacement card.
¶¶FOOTNOTE (oh, my aching heads -- softball, Kim): Which I didn't actually see, but I suspect was not filled out through prior information gathering.
##FOOTNOTE (how many pounds before I get my gym card?): I've used my checkbook fewer times than my gym card in the last two years. Who requires checks anymore? Oh, wait, I just answered that...
†††FOOTNOTE (Oh, look! A bumper sticker!): Did you know musk isn't all animalic and sexual and rutting? I always thought it was, but it's actually soapy. And if we're talking "actually," it's sort of a reverse-engineering thing. The scent added to laundry soaps starting way back in the 30's (I may be making that up) is a musk, so we associate musk smells with soap now. You're welcome.
‡‡‡FOOTNOTE (supply lines are getting thinner and harder to maintain): Nathan Branch said Grain de Musc said of another JCE creation, "...one of Jean Claude Ellena's many variations on the smell of water."
$FOOTNOTE (on the money): Well, if you count bergamot as close enough to lime leaves for our purposes.
Monday, November 17, 2008
I can't believe I forgot to use these pigs on Halloween. I was so giddy over the Hersheys with Omens cartoon I flat forgot.
So, Happy Post-Halloween Thanksgivingish Continuum.
And I find I have a bunch of little things and nothing worth its own blogpost. That's what licking the pig is all about, my friends.
[SUMMARY: To recap...]
First, there was a little nudge in the comments to spill the beans on my cereal purchase. I may have been remiss in where it came from. Their contact address is in New Hampshire, the "about us" mentions sublets in NYC and the cereal came packed with wadded Boston Globes, so... east coast. Possibly New York.
Anyway, it's a company called [me] & goji† that I found through Gizmodo or Geekologie. The cereal is spectacular. I'm a cereal fan in general, but this cereal takes the cake.‡
On their website, you§ travel through a list of ingredients -- different flakes, grains, seeds, nuts, berries -- and add what you want to your cereal bowl. As each item is added, the nutritional information label on the right reflects your choices.
Then you name your cereal.¶ Then you buy your cereal. Then your cereal is hand-packed by a REALLY cute boy.# It's almost like having cabana boys. In New York. Or maybe New Hampshire.
It is, of course, a little expensive for cereal. Like lovingly hand-knit socks are a little more expensive than socks-by-the-dozen from Old Navy.††
Also? You can buy carbon offsets to ameliorate the guilt of having cereal shipped across the country.
Also? Goldenberries are really, really sour. You should get something sweet to go with them if you get goldenberries.‡‡
[SUMMARY: I have impulse control problems in so many arenas.]
Lace knitting may be the death of me. Despite my chest-pounding over being able to count on beyond four, I'm not sure that's accurate. Or maybe just not consistent.
The good news is Malabrigo Lace, despite its fuzziness, holds up pretty well through multiple froggings.
[SUMMARY: Says the voice of experience.]
Last week, a new billboard went up. I called Hans, excitedly,% and he immediately decided we should bet lunch on what the billboard would be.
"Category. Specific category. I'm going to say... ski resort."
"Shit. That's a good one. I bet you win. Um... health care!"
Of course, I have to look at the surprisingly creepy guys§§ on the billboard until they take it down. I'm guessing since everybody finds it so creepy, this billboard is the one that will stick through the next six months.
[SUMMARY: A message of hope.]
A chocolate eyeball escaped from the Halloween candy some time within the last couple of weeks and got covered by a knitting pattern then ground into the carpet. I'm blaming it on the cat.
If anyone knows how to get chocolate out of shag carpet, let me know.
[SUMMARY: The joys of homeownership. And cat ownership. And chocolate eyeballs.]
Today I wore my jacket when we went to lunch. Friday I bought a snow brush/scraper for the Cutest Little Car in the Whole Wide World. Seemingly unrelated events.
I believe they are both important steps on my campaign to become St. Marin of the Mountains, patron saint of fuzzy crack, fuzzy cats and odd sexual positions.¶¶
See, I know if I had not sweated my way through lunch today unnecessarily, if I had not purchased a $12 snow thingie, it would be cold and snowing for the rest of the winter. As it stands, I have assured my fellow citizens a pleasant Monday's lunchtime and a minimum of snow this season.
If that's not martyrdom, I don't know what is.
Unfortunately, I haven't heard a peep from the Vatican yet. How many miracles does one woman have to perform before the frickin' Vatican will take notice?
[SUMMARY: Not a theology major.]
I'm pretty sure I had more to share, but I don't know what it might have been. Hell, I gave you Terry and Chas. What more could you want from me?
Champaca - Ormonde Jayne
Marin says: The first blast makes me want to say "lime," only it's not quite that bright -- more like one of those tough, bitter grasses that you'd nibble on when you were a kid and too young to worry about how bitter it was.
It dries down within minutes to a watery, woody, slightly citrusy smell. There's something dry and sharp in it, like pepper, but very little scent of any kind left.
I feel like I'm missing the whole lovely roll-out because it's too small to smell.
This may be the first Ormonde Jayne I'm not delighted with -- the scent itself is fine, but it's so fleeting it's best on the cuffs rather than the wrist.##
Ormonde Jayne says: (A tiny pale orange flower from India) Related to the magnolia and deemed sacred in the Indus Valley, Champaca flower absolute is a heavenly, creamy floral scent - both elegant and intimate.$ Blended with neroli and bamboo and underscored with fragrant rice and green tea notes, this is a distinguished perfume of rare beauty.
Top: Neroli,$ pink pepper$ and bamboo
Heart: Champaca and freesia absolutes, basmati notes
Base: Myrrh, green tea notes and musk
Hans says: Sour smelling, like... I almost got it... right at the end, like an herb. Just at the end.
[like lime, but not limey enough to be lime, I said]
Yeah! Not super-citrusy, more earthy. Earthy sour citrusy. Write it down.
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): Their grammar, not mine.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Heh.
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): And by "you," I really mean "you," 'cause I'm guessing a solid majority of those who go check out the website won't be able to resist building their own cereal, even if they never actually order. It's like some low-tech, high-fibre video game.
¶FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Like having kids or getting a puppy, naming rights are part of the charm. My cereals are "The Bible Tells Me So" because it had a lot of biblical grains in it and "Hopin' Sesame" because there are sesame seeds in it and I'm the biggest dork in the world.
#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Adam packed mine. He hand-signed both containers in blue Sharpie, which I think is a charming touch.
††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): If I speak your language, it's so much easier for you to understand.
‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): The Bible Tells Me So contains artisanal cereal, spelt flakes, goldenberry and chia (runner up name: Chia, My Pet). Hopin' Sesame contains: flaxed and flaked, rye flakes, goji, bananas, blueberries and sesame seeds (runner up name: Goji, bo-boji, banana-fana, fo-bluberry, me-my-rye flake, sesame!). I know you wanted to ask.
%FOOTNOTE (percented): Excited because it was a political billboard, referencing some ballot issue we were sure we'd have to look at for months after the vote was in and counted. Not excited because they were changing the billboard. They do that about every other week.
§§FOOTNOTE (how are we going to spin this?): We have nicknamed them Terry and Chas. Chas's full name is Charles "Meatball" Thoroughbrace III. Only his mother calls him Trip and nobody's really called him Meatball anymore since Winky Bushmeyer died in '97. And if you think they're not creepy, click for big.
¶¶FOOTNOTE (heads up, Vatican City): Still working on the particulars. I figure I don't need to have it all nailed down until I make my acceptance speech. There's an awards ceremony, right?
##FOOTNOTE (reasons too numerous to number): A concept I ddn't figure out for the longest time. When perfumes evaporate too quickly, they'd apparently be better off sprayed on the clothing, which will absorb and hold them, then on the skin where they eventually wear off. At least, that's what I think it means. That's what I'm talking about, in any case.
$FOOTNOTE (on the money!): I'm counting "intimate" as "nobody can smell it now unless they're intimate with me."
Friday, November 14, 2008
It's a tired Friday that started with snow,† so it's kinda nice to meme and not be clever‡ without a net.
That said, I may have a funny little story later today if things don't get too hairy to slack off and blog.
For now, on to the meme.
[SUMMARY: See? There was a point.]
Here are the rules:
1. Link to the person that tagged you and put the rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 weird or random facts about yourself.
3. Tag 7 random people at the end of your post and link to their blog.
4. Let each person know they have been tagged by leaving a note on their blog.
My Tagger - Laurie
First, I'd like to commend Laurie on warning me *yesterday* that she would be tagging me today, even though I had to stay awake like a kid waiting for Santa last night, leading seamlessly into my first weird thing:§
1. I have bravely¶ outlined my increasingly weird sleep habits here. I've slept reasonably well for a reasonably long time, so it's clearly time for some sleep trauma. About a week ago, I stopped knowing WHERE TO PUT MY SHOULDERS. I am baffled. I didnt know there were so many wrong ways to arrange one's shoulders when the lights go out.# I'm not sure what the next solution will be, but I hope it involves a crane.
2. I have secretly assigned a sex to each number and letter. Some are actually hermaphroditic and take their gender cues from their surroundings.††
3. I feel inordinately smug that Helen, my last Secret Pal, sent me a Noro striped scarf prior to the Yarn Harlot's recent canonisation of said project. It makes me feel fashion forward.‡‡
4. I mail-ordered custom cereal from New York last week.
5. I can smell when it's going to snow.§§
6. I hate the word "stink" the way a lot of people hate the word "moist," and I actually react like someone used a particularly nasty four-letter word in front of my grandmother¶¶ when someone says it.
7. I hate eggplant because it feels like a tongue in my mouth.##
Oh, the tagging part is always the hardest. Lyda and Anna-Liza.††† Donna. Kim. Kelly.‡‡‡ Karen. Yvette.
Some of you are getting tagged because I can. Some of you are getting tagged because I haven't heard nearly as much from you lately as I would like. Some of you... well, let's consider it proof of life.
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): Which everybody in Denver acts as if they've never, ever seen before and the freeways turn to parking lots every first snow, even though we only got less than an inch, but that entire sub-inch fell in great white wads during the very peak of rush hour, so it was scarier than we could have imagined. I'm rolling my eyes so hard right now my eyelashes are curling.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Or just coherent.
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): A segueway of beauty is a joy forever.
¶FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Some would say shamelessly.
#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Not in the really good way. In the sleep way. I don't know if there's a wrong place to put your shoulders in the fun way, unless it's squarely in your partner's sensitive bits. I suspect even that could be fun. I'm thinking about this *way* too much.
††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): You're backing away from the screen right now, aren't you?
‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Please don't remind me eleventy-billion people have worn the scarf before me. It taints the illusion.
§§FOOTNOTE (swirling like a blizzard): Not totally weird -- lots of people can, but so many people can't, they think I'm insane when I say, "It's going to snow -- I can smell it!"
¶¶FOOTNOTE (turning my nose up. Twice.): Internally. I try really hard not to hold my weirdities against other people.
##FOOTNOTE (pounded like a dance club beat): Again, not in the good way.
†††FOOTNOTE (double-crossed -- hey if I can count Lyda and A-L as two separate meme targets, I am surely capable of miscounting crosses): Yes, I'm counting them as two.
‡‡‡FOOTNOTE (the train tracks less taken): Remember Kelly?
Some of you may note (and I'd like to receive credit for) my new-found skill in counting to four and beyond. I owe it all to lace-knitting.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
A pair of size 13 men's socks.‡
ANOTHER pair of size 13 men's socks.§
I fancy y'all are as sick of seeing my couch, my chairs, my porch as I am,¶ I took the pictures at Bag Lady Katherine's house Sunday.
On her chair.#
Pattern: Rippling Dunes Socks by KellyK Designs††
Yarn: ShibuiKnits Sock in Pebble‡‡
Needles: US size 3
Method: Two at once, toe up§§
Size: Men's 13. THIRTEEN. And about 11" of leg. But I really liked the pattern. It's one of those that has enough mindless stockinette (four rows out of every six), but then a set-up row and a simple cable row to keep things interesting.
I am only hoping Brother has glanced at this post, seen it involved knitting and moved on. I don't need him remembering his Father's Day socks from 2005 are still unfinished while I have managed to finish two pairs for Dad.
Dad did not choose to make me try intarsia in the round. This is his reward.¶¶
Call me Spindoctor Marin.##
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): F'd it's little brains out. Heheheheh.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): For those of you scoring at home, that's roughly six cubic centahares of stitching, known in layman's terms as "an assload."
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Also for those of you playing at home, that's two full assloads of stitching for a man who announced his recent engagement to me VIA EMAIL.
¶FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): You may not even care, but I like to imagine your world revolves around my knitting pictures, so I feel good about expanding your horizons.
#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Which has a horse.
††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Dad picked it out himself.
‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Though I thought it was Beach, hence the slightly misnamed "Low Tide Socks."
§§FOOTNOTE (what a spin): The only way to fly.
¶¶FOOTNOTE (clubbing?): And this is my justification.
##FOOTNOTE (pounded like and F'ing O): Please? I think it'd be a really cool nickname.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
I suspect there's something in swapping that smacks of scrapbooking and tole painting -- something geeky in a just-so way -- but I love getting the mail.
My very own Dracula swap package came yesterday.
I kinda dig the Victoriana of brown paper packages tied up with string.† Seems Dracula-appropriate.‡
There were munchies too.
In all my travels this Halloween season, I never saw the Ghirardelli bat-black chocolates. Also? I forgot how much I love those barber pole hard candies of the many flavours.§ I must go add them to my Secret Pal list.
And I'm very excited about the idea of pomegranate green tea. I don't know why -- teas purporting to fruit are usually disappointing, but this is pomegranate! And green tea!¶
There's squishy sock yarn in classic Dracula colours#:
What I believe is a dumpling bag with -- get this -- bite marks. I think that's brilliant.
I got a set of stitch markers.
I think the bats in particular are wicked cool.†† Very detailed.
We're clearly into photo-sucking season, boys and girls. I get home too late to take advantage of natural light, but I'm too greedy and impatient to wait until daylight to open stuff.‡‡
I'm NEVER going to make it to saint at this rate.
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): I also dig knowing somewhere eBeth is wandering around singing that to herself.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): I think we need more buzz-words like "Dracula-appropriate" and less "child-friendly" or "action item."
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Like old-school Jelly Bellies. Only without popcorn flavour.
¶FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): And with all those exclamation points, it *has* to be good!
#FOOTNOTE (pounded): In a colourway that used to be Yarrrrn, but has been dubbed by Kat (my upstream swap buddy) "Dracula's Lust." It has "lust" in it... it *has* to be good!
††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): I can't pull that off, can I?
‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): I tried. Really. But it was like a mosquito bite -- I could try to ignore it, try not to scratch it, but eventually I gave in. I can't lie... it felt good.
1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
Merino, BFL, Cormo, silk, bamboo, cashmere and various combinations thereof. I love alpaca in theory, but it's too warm for anything but maybe accessories. I'm pretty much over big, fuzzy, synthetic novelty yarns and only buy them for very specific projects. Generally, plant fibres hurt my hands when they're not mixed with lovely wool.
2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?
On the floor, in a box, on a table, under the chair, in the packages they came in, inside a project bag, in the UFOs they support...
3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
Mom taught me almost exactly 31 years ago. I'd say I'm intermediate/advanced -- I *can* knit anything (I'm convinced), but I'm not so much a process knitter that I want to knit difficult things just to prove I can.
4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?
Nope. If that really bothers you, I can cobble something together.
5. What's your favorite scent?
Cedar. Lime. Clove. Cardamom. Numerous others. In candles, pumpkin spice and wintery, piney things. It can be a mood thing, too.
6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?
Sort of. I'm getting pickier all the time -- dark chocolate, real caramels and salt mixed with sweet or chocolate tempered with nuts are my druthers. ETA: And, thanks to the Dracula swap package discussed in tomorrow's post, I remember how much I like those old-fashioned striped stick candies in all the cool flavours -- raspberry, peppermint, root beer, grape, cinnamon, orange, cherry...
7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?
I putter through various hobbies as the mood strikes me - origami, stained glass, things with beads, warm glass, sewing. I do not, however, spin.
8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
Not country. Not jazz. Rush, Neil Diamond, Blue Oyster Cult and The Sisters of Mercy are probably in my top twenty favourite all-time acts, if that gives you an idea. I can play almost music format.
9. What's your favorite color(s)? Any colors you just can't stand?
Purple, chocolate brown, rich red, almost any green. On the other hand, yellow. There are very few yellows I like -- and I like orange, but only dark orange tending toward the red.
10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
I live with a cat. Just me and the cat. You had to make me say that out loud, didn't you?
11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?
In order of frequency: Scarves, mittens, hats (every day it's cold, when it's really cold, when I'm going to be outside a long time and I don't care that my hair will turn into a dandelion clock, respectively). Never, ever ponchos. I have bad poncho memories from childhood.
12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
Socks, scarves, lace.
13. What are you knitting right now?
Sockse, scarves, lace.
14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?
15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
Circulars -- I rarely even use DPNs, as I'm very fond of the two circular needles thing. Generally I prefer aluminum and I kinda hate plastic.
16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?
17. How old is your oldest UFO?
Very, very old. At least a couple of years. Maybe more.
18. What is your favorite holiday? What winter holiday do you observe?
Halloween. I observe Christmas, but only in the crassest consumer way. Well, not entirely true -- it's the best time of year for family togetherness, but I'm not religous by any stretch.
19. Is there anything that you collect?
Skulls, orchids, dragonflies, bath stuff, pigs, perfume samples, dust.
20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?
I subscribe to Interweave Knits and Piecework. I have a ton of books and buy many of the big ones as they come out (perhaps I should have included "knitting books" on the last question). There is one pattern I'm itching for, but because it isn't available for download (and I can't see paying $5 to ship a $5 pattern), I haven't got it for myself yet: the Playing in the Leaves pattern set from Heartstrings.
21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?
Not that I can think of. Lace knitting is pretty satisfying as process knitting for me. OH! I may have lied. Knitting with beads is intriguing (have you seen Jung at Heart's work?) but I'm somewhere between intimidated and unmotivated to actually do anything about it.
22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements?
Yes I am. I don't know -- I'm a Women's 8 1/2 long.
23. When is your birthday?
June 27. You're off the hook.
24. Are you on Ravelry? If so, what's your ID?
Yep! TheAntiM, oddly enough.
Friday, November 7, 2008
When Hurricane Ike hit,% it wreaked havoc on some of the offshore rigs operated by the company for which I am currently working. At our monthly departmental meeting,† we learned about the clean-up process and just how arduous and expensive it is.‡
This is all sad.§
But I learned about the most marvelous creature, and I can't help but feel optimistic:
As long as there are crane barges¶ in the world, it can't be all bad.
%FOOTNOTE (percented): I probably shouldn't make jokes, since I'm about to tell you how sad it is that rigs were harmed in the making of this storm, but I caught the giggles in the meeting because they ran down the storms that have affected offshore ops, and it went, "Katrina, Rita, Ike..." and I thought, "It's like the ouija board of the gods. They're trying to spell something out for us." My guess is it has something to do with Krispy Kremes. I know, I know, but I crack me up.
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): Which I have been asked to attend even though I am not an employee and they mostly talk about employee stuff like annual bonuses and why everybody's stock options suck like Paris Hilton right now.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Not to mention the loss of production and equipment. For those of you scoring at home, my client leaked a total of six gallons of petroleum products through the entire storm season this year. Y'know -- in defense of medium oil.
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Not puppy-kicking sad or children starving in Africa sad, but havoc is havoc, even if it does happen to the mildly evil oil not-quite-congomerate.
¶FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Ocean-going cranes, my friends. And only 48 shopping days 'til Christmas.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
[SUMMARY: Connecting the dots to give you the whole picture.]
They say money can't buy happiness. It's a pretty little thought, good for Aesop and bedtime stories, but a steady stream of deliveries from Internet retailers gets me pretty goddamned giddy.
For instance, when I fully realised you can purchase discontinued perfumes at any number of online venues, I immediately went to look for Scaasi, my signature scent from 1990 through 1993.
I tried periodically, and finally a week ago, there it was.
So I married a discount code to a sale price on a website with free shipping and pennies later...
Still as big and bold and stupidly beautiful as I remember it.^
And I read a little something a little somewhere about a niche perfumer offering a sample set and voilà!
Don't tell me I didn't just buy myself some happy.‡
[SUMMARY: Feel-good psychology is lost on the capitalist.]
Then, because this is still a knitblog,§ there's the singular joy of the yarn club.
My new-found fibre lust for lace knitting¶ was slaked by the arrival of about 1000 yards of Black Bunny merino/silk laceweight in totally -licious# purples.††
It doesn't hurt that the purple goodness came in this‡‡:
Carol was kind enough to let me stay in the Black Bunny club even though I'm just *barely* bright enough to work PayPal to finance it. That in itself makes me happy.
[SUMMARY: The gods look out for the feeble.]
Best for last, there's the even-better of receiving unsolicited items that didn't even require a credit card number in the mailbox.
Brought to you by Skull a Day, the Magic of Kim, the number four...
Kim... seriously, better than Nintendo in the mail.
[SUMMARY: Good things come to those who stop whining for five minutes to appreciate them.]
Know what else makes me happy?
[SUMMARY: Proof of life.@]
Améthyst - Olivier Durbano (Bijoux de Pierres Poèmes)
Marin says: My very first impression was, "Oh, no... Chanel." I was sure we were heading straight into That Aldehyde, but the alcohol burned off and it was a lovely ride.
Much like its companion scent, Black Tourmaline, there is a soft richness to this that probably shouldn't appeal to me. It's very nearly vanilla, very nearly aldehyde, very nearly headshop.
Maybe this an olfactory tour of negative space, harmony, background and all those things that make good art great.
I smell cedar and pepper, I got a whiff of bitter orange, something powdery -- which always makes me think of iris¶¶ -- and a touch of those vanilla/amber/sandalwood headshop things I usually hate.
The tiniest hint of smoke?
I really like this, but it may be too pedestrian to consider buying a bottle.## Something about it just says blah, blah, masculine cologne, blah.
Upon revisiting, I'm getting more of the soft, tempered cedar, which I lovelovelove. And I have no idea what kind of crack I was smoking to get The Aldehyde.†††
Luckyscent‡‡‡ says: The second in Olivier Durbano’s Perfume Poems, Améthyst takes its name and mood from amethyst, the prized purple gemstone of lore.% The gem itself is a symbol of heavenly understanding, and of moving with ease in the religious, spiritual, and material planes. In antiquity, the gem was thought to serve as a talisman against poison, drunkenness and bad luck. Durbano’s interpretation of amethyst into perfume form has made for a deeply peaceful, mysterious scent that debuts with a surprising pepper and fruit mix before it slowly swirls into palisander wood and the silky powder notes of orris. A soft amber, sandalwood, musk and vanilla are the base upon which this purifying scent is built upon, playing upon your senses with their sweet and musky natures and sending you to a place of contemplation and reverie. The majesty, the spirituality and the intensity of the color purple all rolled into one beautifully mysterious and forever haunting fragrance.
NOTES: bergamot,$ pepper, grape, raspberry, incense,$ palisander wood, jasmine, orris, vegetable amber, sandalwood,$ musk, vanilla$
Hans says: Mmmm... very citrusy. Like orange juice. You can tell them I said it smells like Yazoo spicy barbecue sauce.§§§
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): If even one of you got my tortured jape, all the set-up will have been worth it. I am just that dork.
^FOOTNOTE (careted): And even if it's awful, it will always remind me of Mom -- who bought me my first bottle of Scaasi -- and that will always blind me to the possibility of awfulness.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): And the chance to dabble in what I fool myself is Nathan Branch-esque perfume photography doesn't break my heart neither. On the other hand, the Scent Systems Jasmine is to ass AS cat piss is to honeyed rose petals. This did NOT make me happy, but I will chalk it up to the greater good and... happy again. Lalala.
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): *cough*
¶FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Despite having frogged and re-knit the first two repeats of the body of the Purple Prose scarf roughly eleventy-seven times.
#FOOTNOTE (pounded): It used to say "Marin-licious." I simply couldn't keep a straight face.
††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Purples even a digital camera can love.
‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Which furthered my happiness because Cat for Scale tried wildly to catch and bat and bite the ghosts.
¶¶FOOTNOTE (beat the drum, don't eat the drum): AAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!!! WOMAAAAAAAAN!!!
@FOOTNOTE (atted): And proof that, though the damned cat won't sit still for a decent portrait, he can't resist hanging around when the camera comes out.
§§FOOTNOTE (the swirling elegance of irises): Largely because all the real perfume critics say iris is powdery. I don't think I'd know if an iris bit me in the ass. Rest assured if an iris ever does bite me in the ass, I'll share the pictures with you.
##FOOTNOTE (pounded like cross-wise logic): Yes, upon re-reading that sentence, I realise just how dorky and sort of elitist it sounds. I never promised you logic or reason. Or a rose garden. Though I think I did just promise photographic evidence of ass-biting irises.
†††FOOTNOTE (obvious is my cross to bear): Aldehyde crack, apparently.
‡‡‡FOOTNOTE (cryptic triptych): I usually try to quote the actual perfumier (or the soulless conglomerate that markets the stuff), but when I went to the Olivier Durbano website, I found a cryptic splash page -- a login, an animation about beauty and truth or some such drivel, and no content to be reached without the login and password... no way to even sign up to get a login and password. I'm thinking I have to buy a bottle of something Olivier Durbano to learn the secret handshake so I can share with y'all. That's the sacrifice I'm willing to make to help further your education.
%FOOTNOTE (percented): And my very favourite stone of all time, for those of you scoring at home. Only 49 shopping days left 'til Christmas.
$FOOTNOTE (on the money): Ha! Got one! And if palisander wood could be mistaken for cedar, maybe even two!
§§§FOOTNOTE (smokey joe): This isn't like the elephant comment. We had BBQ for lunch and I had a blob of Yazoo spicy on my left wrist right next to the scent zone. BBQ trumps cedar/citrus and Hans thinks he's funny.
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Monday, November 3, 2008
I actually knitted something. This may not shock you so much, but I really haven't knit for about a month. No reason, just didn't.
But I'm back with a vengeance.§
Once I got this little guy done...
...I got all inspired and I wound up the remaining yarn for the Low Tide Socks and unscrambled what I screwed up on the Purple Prose scarf.¶
Who wouldn't be inspired by this little lopsided face? these sweet wings?
[SUMMARY: Awww... wookat da bat!]
I also made my very first stitch markers. Note the Dracular theme:
So the outgoing mail was almost as much fun as incoming mail.
[SUMMARY: You have your pleasures, I have mine.#]
Did you notice how I hinted there may be multiple posts this week? I bet you're thrilled.
Multiple is good.††
Yohji Homme - Yohji Yamamoto
Marin says: Mmmmmm... licorice and lime. I know that probably sounds awful, but trust me, it's lovely. Similar to bay rum, but edgier than most bay rum scents because of the distinct licorice.‡‡
As the brighter lime wisps off, a powdery cocoa smell is revealed. Actually, it's very much like the patchouli in the Angel line, where the chocolate notes in the patchouli are emphasised.
Eventually, it becomes a powdery cedar with a hint of chocolate, which (come to think of it) may be a patchouli.
Oh, wait! Old books! Mmmmmm...
The Perfumed Court says: Yohji Homme is a fabulous gourmand scent with notes of licorice,$ chocolate,$ coffee,$ rum,$ cinnamon, sandalwood, amber and leather.$ And this is not just for men; ladies would love this one too. The perfect winter scent!!§§
Hans says: I smell licorice in that. And spice. Spicy licorice.
†FOOTNOTE (crossed): Alright, you caught me... ship has sailed. It probably started when I decided my freshman year in college I wanted a bat tattoo. I've only gotten battier since.
‡FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): That would be *gasp* as in "*gasp* how many more commas could she have possibly used," rather than, "*gasp* I simply don't believe it!"
§FOOTNOTE (swerved): The Dracula swap on Ravelry made it all possible.
¶FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): I have made excellent and noticable progress on each.
#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Heheheheheheh.
††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): That's what she said.
‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): And because most bay rums are like Old Spice in terms of edgy.
$FOOTNOTE (on the money): Ha! Got one! OK, counting coffee + leather as books. Trust me, it's pretty close.
§§FOOTNOTE (a graphic representation of the boggling of my mind): Why? Why two exclamation points? WHY?