Thanks for the good wishes yesterday when I was under the weather. Actually what happened was I had gone the day before for my annual TB test. They give you a little injection under the skin and then you go back 48-72 hours later to see if you develop what is called a wheal. I get my "official read" tomorrow (although I can tell it's negative), but for the first time in ten years, I suffered some side effects from the test and got a fever and some malaise. It was a good excuse to go to bed early and read.
These shots were taken over the weekend in downtown Long Beach at the Blue Cafe. I was waiting for some friends outside on the patio, trying to block out the shitty blues band that was playing inside, and got distracted by these circles and lines. It should be illegal to play the blues in broad daylight. The whole vibe says "night" to me. The second band was much better than the first. Maybe I'm still a little cranky from yesterday. Maybe.
I'm under the weather with a fever tonight, so I'm not going to write too much. I'm behind on my "house" pictures, so I thought I'd add this one which belongs to my cousin. It's gorgeous, inside and out. Click for larger view. Enjoy.
In July 2004, I started a nearly 2-year-long knitting class. We met once a month for 20 months to make 20, 12 x 12 inch Aran afghan squares from the book The Great American Aran Afghan. Right now, I'm about to finish my final square (I got behind, so I did 16 instead of 20), which means that all I have to do is block a few squares, sew them together, sew a border on them, and voila, I'll have an amazing heirloom-quality merino wool afghan. Below are the 16 squares including the one nearly finished (as is).
The ones that still look "wrinkly," folded, or rectangular instead of square are the ones that haven't been blocked yet, probably still one-third of the total. Blocking is boring, and it means shooing my kitties off my bed for a day, but I'll get these final ones done this week.
When the class started, I was an okay knitter. I was knitting in the intermediate range, and the first squares we did (some of the rust ones) took me the entire month to do, and were a tremendous struggle. Now, almost two years later, and thanks entirely to this class and the fantastic teacher we had, I'm now an advanced if not nearly expert knitter. Same with my classmates. We all turned the corner somewhere around the 9- or 10-month mark.
Because I have to do things differently than the rest of the class, I didn't make an all cream-colored afghan. No, I opted for to make mine in four neutral shades as you'll see below. (If by some miracle I decide in the next few days to go ahead and make 20 instead of 16 squares, my next color will be sand.) This is almost two years worth of work, so be gentle.
These are the gray squares; obviously, the first one is still in progress:
These are the rust squares:
The camel squares:
And finally, the taupe squares. I don't know why this color photographed so inconsistently. They are all the same color, and I'd say that color is closest to this top one:
I suppose stranger things have happened. I am a published bead artist. Anyway, I'll let you know when/if this actually happens, but I have been approached by someone who publishes both a zine and a website, requesting permission to use some of my shots of a particular subject (the one shown is not it, although this one was shot the same day). Watch this space for info as it comes to pass.
You are a virtual roller coaster of emotions, and most people enjoy the ride. Your mood tends to set the tone of the room, and when you're happy, this is a good thing. When you get in a dark mood, watch out - it's very hard to get you out of it. It's sometimes hard for you to cheer up, and your gloom can be contagious.
This is Clapotis, the most popular pattern ever from Knitty. And just to the left is Phoebe wondering if she dare lay on Clapotis. She dare not.
It's for good reason that Clapotis is such a favorite pattern among knitters. It's a fun and easy pattern (at an intermediate level, I'd say) that makes an extremely versatile shawl/wrap/sofa blanket that will be the envy of all your friends. No seriously, it will. Whenever I wear mine in public, I get compliments on it from strangers on the street. Even a gay male airline flight attendent expressed his admiration of it the last time I flew. And I think it only took me about two weeks to make it.
Another great thing about it is that you can use just about any medium weight yarn to make it. I chose Noro Silk Garden, one of my all-time faves. Clapotis is knit on the bias, and the fun thing about using a self-striping yarn like Silk Garden is that the striping will come out in the opposite direction of the diagonal which makes it look like it was a much harder knit than it actually was, thereby elevating the knitter into genius master craftsperson status. And let me tell you something, I'm not too proud to admit that I love posing as a genius.
I feel quite bad that Paul McCartney's eponymous 64th birthday came to pass while he is in the midst of the demise of his ill-fated marriage. I really, really, really wish Linda could have been here for him today. Who knows, maybe she was.
And speaking of birthdays, be sure to pop over on Monday the 19th to wish Michael K many happy returns. Yes, our favorite gossip is celebrating his big day, and you know that's hot shit!
And no, my brother and wife are NOT expecting. I must be an alchemist because I make something from nothing. (Shout out to Joe O. for the poetry.)
I should just warn you now, I've got a bunch of Stevie Nicks avatars coming in the weeks (and months) ahead. So if you see Stevie on Haloscan, it's probably me. Here's the latest one.
Alfie's paw is all better, but his seasonal allergies are back. Poor little guy, he can't catch a break. And in total feline fashion, if I give him kisses, he waits two minutes and licks them all off. Brat.
Why am I listening to Billy Squier today? Yeah, it's a mystery to me, too. Two Days Gone has never sounded so good. I promise you, I'm completely sober right now, although I'm a little amped up on caffeine. It all started with a vague urge to hear In The Dark, and next thing you know, I'm letting the whole CD spin. Lonely Is The Night? Heaven help me.
UPDATE 6/18/06: Nope, they're not. This was a case of me reading into a perfectly innocent dinner invite. What can I say, I've always been a conspiracy theorist.
Are they or aren't they? My brother's been married almost two years. My sister-in-law just called to invite me over for dinner on Father's Day. Also invited are our other sister, and my sister-in-law's mother, grandmother, and brothers. (My mom lives out of state.) Thing is, our father is deceased and my sister-in-law's father lives in another country. So there won't be any fathers at this Father's Day party. Or will there? Stay tuned!
I've shown remarkable restraint and haven't featured any photos of Jake lately. But I'm feeling really hormonal, so here you go. I guess Jake and Sarah Jessica Parker were rehearsing lines together or something.
Here's a listing for a house a few blocks from me. Check out the price. The ONLY reason it's that much is because of the beach-front location. Personally, I don't think they'll ever get that much. The house itself is a tear-down or in serious need of a remodel at the very least.
This is my favorite part of the listing:
Estimated Monthly Payments: $55,064 *based on 30year fixed APR loan with 20% down and no points
When my heel settles down, I'll swing by and take a picture of it over the wall so you can see the house, although it's nothing special. (These two were taken from the car.) This is all that shows from the street. The two-story in the second picture is the next-door neighbor and not part of the property for sale.
When I first heard little Kingston Rossdale's name, I told my friends and family, "it's a shout-out to Jamaica and reggae music." Sure enough, check out little King's T-shirt in these pictures that were just released. What a little doll. Daddy's not too bad either. I'm digging this family.
This is Alfie. He's pictured here sitting on my desk while I'm trying to work (blurred out due to the confidential nature of my job). I can't begin to tell you how impossible it is to work with him stretched out in front of my monitor like that. But I digress.
Anyway, poor Alfie. Yesterday I noticed that when he was sitting, he was holding up one of his front paws. So I started to pay closer attention to him when he's ambulating and jumping, and sure enough, he's favoring the other side. Today, I saw him licking the pads on the affected paw, so I managed to take a look (against his protests, cats HATE being examined), and sure enough, one of his little pink pads is darker pink than the rest.
He may be experiencing sympathetic symptoms to my own. I have plantar fasciitis which is similar in debility to a heel spur acting up in my left foot. In fact, it's really bad right now, and it's all I can do to get out of bed in the morning and not fall on my face. Oh, and I had a fantastic Mexican meal the other night at Pancho's in Manhattan Beach, but my reflux has been acting up ever since. Wah wah wah. God, I want to whine! Did I tell you about my right knee? Oh, never mind!
Approaching Dodger Stadium. That's my sister in the blue shirt with the long hair. In front of her is my brother on the left, and the two young brothers-in-law on the right. They are my brother's wife's little brothers, aged 16 and 9 (the 9-year-old is directly in front of my sister, you can just barely see an arm). So the 16-year-old brother-in-law is like 6 foot 3 now, and when I met him three years ago, he was shorter than me (I'm 5 foot 2). Damn kids these days!
Look carefully in the top of the photo and you can see the blimp!
The next four pictures are of the interior of the suite. Thank goodness we had this because it was about 102 that day, and had we not had air conditioning, I would have passed out. These suites are pretty sweet. Yeah, that's a flat screen TV above the chow, but I gotta tell you, it didn't have a good picture.
This is the view straight out into the stadium. We had two rows of seats outside, and if you look in the upper right-hand corner, you can see that there's closed circuit TV of the game out there. There are alsofour (!) televisions above the window looking out (you can just see the bottoms of these four sets), in addition to the flat screen on the wall above the food. They really don't want you to miss anything on television!
This is the little seating area. New this year is a computer, you know, in case you can't find anything to watch on television and don't want to watch the game. The 9-year-old brother-in-law was on Ebay for about four innings, looking at Star Wars toys and Legos. He also had The Matrix on one of the televisions and was monitoring the action there in between pointing out which toys he wants.
Just in case you can't find anything on the other six televisions in the room, there is ONE MORE TV above the "kitchen" area. I don't think you can tell, but we were watching the French Open on that set. There was a single remote control that operated all these televisions, and I am still in awe that my brother knew how to operate it. Personally, I was over-stimulated by all the media options. Who am I kidding, I was on Myspace and Blogger within five minutes of walking through the door. That fridge was stocked!
See the guy in the yellow shirt, dead center in the picture? That's former Dodger manager, Tommy Lasorda (the new owner is one person over on the right). Lasorda was a friend of my dad's, so no shite about him is allowed in the comments or you will be blasted into deep space. Lasorda was actually the smartest guy in all of Dodger stadium Saturday. He sat in that blazing sun for about one inning and then took off for cooler environs.
That's T0m H@nks' suite, the last one just before the press box begins. No, he wasn't there that day, maybe because he didn't feel like slumming in a room that only has six television options. (Can you tell that I can't get over the fucking TVs?)
Yep, there is a big LA painted on the floor just outside the door where the two rows of stadium seats are. I couldn't resist taking this shot. Who knows, it could be my avatar one day. As Mike V. pointed out a couple posts ago, the Dodgers beat the Phillies 8-2.
Thus concludes my report on my annual trip to Chavez Ravine/Elysian Park/Dodger Stadium. Over and out.
We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. We must remember always that accusation is not proof and that conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law. We will not walk in fear of one another. We will not be driven by fear into an age of unreason, if we dig deep in our history and our doctrine, and remember that we are not descended from fearful men not from men who feared to write, to speak, to associate and to defend causes that were, for the moment, unpopular. - Edward R. Murrow