Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Dear Life: Seriously, knock it off already

If I didn’t know better, I would swear that somebody is just messin’ with me right now. Like, there’s some kind of Top Secret Experiment on, to see just how many things can be piled on top of me before I completely lose my cool.

We had the windshield crack on the van – like, from side to side. Thanks to insurance it was only $200, but it had to be a crack big enough that we needed a whole replacement…not a small crack that would have been filled free.

The car then developed a slow leak in one tire. Which we ignored, refilling the tire whenever it got too low, until it became a less-slow leak. And then we ended up with a whole new set of tires, because the ones we had were (as it turned out) fairly old and weather-beaten and also had slow leaks here and there.

Apparently, if you park a vehicle outside 24/7 for six years (or so), it can cause wear and tear on the tires. Who knew. (OK, yes, I did know that. What I hadn’t really understood was the passage of time part. I thought those tires were “pretty new, maybe what, two-three years old?” right up until they proved they were manufactured in 2001, and hadn’t been purchased since the new owners took over in 2004, soooo, were probably installed somewhere between 2001 and 2003-ish. Oh.)

Both of my ovens are now completely unreliable. They might heat up to the temperature you ask for…then again…they might not.. And if they do, they might not stay there. They might simply slowly lose heat, or they might drop a hundred degrees and then hasten to make amends.

This does not work well with a lot of baked goods. Which I make a lot of. Especially in times of stress and duress. Because nothing says everything is going to be JUST FINE like bread-stuffs. Copiously spiked with chocolate. And possibly butter. Or filled with dried cherries, apricots and cream cheese. Or…you know? I’m going to go ahead and stop now. (Tart cherries canned in Plain Old Water were on sale last week. I know, right? That’s, like, a supermarket miracle. Those suckers are never on sale, and the sugar-infused ones just don’t make pie quite the same.) (Wait, I thought I said I was going to stop a minute ago…)

The ovens too are “old,” as defined by Sears. I’ve had them repaired three times since we bought them, and each time was a greater ordeal. At this point, I suspect new parts are produced by monks living in Siberia, who hand-craft each part out of recycled inner tubes only in the brief Siberian summer, making five of them total each year.

And one of the burners on my gas range stopped working. I eventually got it working again through copious use of cuss words exotic tools (like unbent paperclips, wire brushes, pocket knives and chopsticks), but now I regard it with Great Suspicion because it still acts a little…funny, sometimes. Doesn’t want to light, or only wants to throw flames around three-quarters of the burner. Hmmmmm…

Plus the dishwasher – which has never done a particularly good job washing dishes – now does even less of a good job.

Yes. We have to wash the dishes before we put them in the dishwasher. If we do not, we end up with whatever was on each dish evenly sprayed on every other dish, and then baked on. For meals that last a lifetime.


My problem there, of course, is that I don’t want to “just” replace them. Oh no. What I want is…well. Something simple, and reliable, and it doesn’t have to be, you know, gold-plated or anything…but…well…maybe…just…{all in one breath} a pair of industrial wall ovens [at least one of them convection] plus a separate bread oven WITH humidity control and then for the range eight burners should do just fine only one of them has to be that dual-type where you can have either two regular sized or one GINORMOUS burner, and of course if you’re going to have THAT you really NEED to go ahead and replace that remarkably crappy refrigerator with maybe a walk-in restaurant-sized deal PLUS I could surely use two or even three dishwashers and a walk-in pantry with maybe a climate-controlled area that can be a ‘root cellar’ would be nice.

Hey. They can be either Viking of Wolfe – I’m not picky or anything. And, yeah, I guess we’ll have to go ahead and build a new addition onto the house, because I have no idea where we’d actually put all of that otherwise…

I am only about $27,999 short of the $28,000 I’d need to get those appliances. And we don’t discuss the cost of an addition, because I’ve already had one nosebleed today and don’t need another one. (Captain Adventure, who didn’t mean to – he was just throwing back his head and my nose got in the way. Ow.)

The husband’s commuter card won’t work. The money is there, but it won’t auto-load. We suspect there’s some kind of algorithm going on there where they’re trying to match months to each other or something. Argh.

Then the health card got suspended. Because $2.19 of one of the dental bills wasn’t “verifiable.” Wha?

Then we had the tri-annual psych exam for Captain Adventure. Which went pretty well, except that the psychiatrist says that while he’s super-extra-crazy smart and that this will probably help him blend in a bit, he’s actually more obviously autistic-autistic than he was three years ago. He’s going to go with the old method of scoring, though, which still drops him into the higher-functioning category. But in a few months, he expects, he would have to use this other one, which would drop him squarely into this bucket. Which is a hard bucket to get out of, so, let’s keep him in this one as long as we can.

And then we get the call that he has been deemed ineligible for services because he is too high functioning. Frankly, they’re right. We don’t actually use any of their services, precisely because he is too high functioning for them. We don’t need respite care for him, he doesn’t require intervention services from them, and pretty much, most of what they have to offer is stuff we have no use for because he just doesn’t need it.

The one thing that has me wincing is that we’re also losing that third party observer when we have school-stuff to deal with; because dudes, it can be hard to know whether something is a good idea or not. And right now, there’s naturally a lot of effort being poured into how do we NOT have to pay for anything. Budgets are tight, blah blah blah.

So it’s been nice to have somebody who actually knows both how this stuff works, and Captain Adventure, to call and say, “Hey, they wanna do this – is that crazy? Or the best idea in the history of ever?”

Kids: 1. Mommy: 0.

Danger Mouse is having a rough time in middle school. Epic. Fail. She’s smart, but soooooo ADHD. Without the teacher looming over her, she is back to kindergarten in terms of her ability to keep her business together. And naturally, she’s got a teacher who is a bit…less than proactive about giving us advanced notice about what-all is going on with her. We can’t get her current assignments from him, so we’re stuck trying to winkle that information from her…and since the whole problem is that her brain was dancing with squirrels in the Rainbow Princess Palace when the assignment was being written on the board…yeah. Problem. And, he doesn’t update the post-mortem in a timely fashion either, sooo, we “discover” that she’s failing when it is way too late to do anything about it.

Kids: 2. Mommy: 0.

THEN, Boo Bug got her usual winter cough. She has gotten this cough every winter, right when the heaters first start coming on round town (not that I have any suspicions around sources, mind you), without fail, since she was six weeks old. This year, though, she started complaining about it hurting to breathe, or that her tummy hurt, and that made me go, “…dude, wait, wha?”, so I dragged her to the doctor, who promptly slapped about five thousand kinds of inhalers into my hands, each with its own complicated set of directions, and now I’ve got an asthmatic in the house. And I’m supposed to get my carpets professionally cleaned and also my duct work, plus I have to run, well, pretty much everything through the washing machine, which should be set to “kill.”

But at least we already use the Extra Tiny Holed Filters for the central system, and change them regularly. So, there’s that.

Kids: 3. Mommy: 0.

Then Eldest came along and…wait. {thinks for a minute} Well. Other than being able to wear my clothes much better than I do, and causing the coffee to disappear faster than I expect lately (she doesn’t actually drink that much of it – she just likes making it, it’s her father and I that are benefitting suffering on this deal), Eldest has actually been really low maintenance all year. Good grades, good behavior, careful with her allowance money…the only thing I had to go, “ARRRRRGH!” about all year was that she was showing some anime to Danger Mouse that was…ahem…slightly questionable for a younger audience.

But only slightly and in a way that probably shot over Danger Mouse’s head like a rocket ship already at 45,000 feet.

So, Kids: 3. Mommy: 1. A come-from-behind victory is still possible! Woot!!!

My hip doesn’t like the change in the weather, which is throwing my sleeping patterns off. My back keeps getting thrown out over Silly Stuff, like reaching down to pick up a ball of yarn off the floor or something. (I can shovel. I can vacuum. I can vigorously scrub the walls and ceiling in the kitchen [don’t ask]. But picking up a rubber band, or a 2 ounce ball of baby yarn? {crrrrrack!!!} What the heck, Me?!?!)

The husband is trying to get coworkers to come here for a potluck chorus rehearsal. Here. I told him he is only allowed to have people over if he makes sure the house is clean, dammit. (Not merely clean. Clean dammit. I was very clear on this point.)

Prediction: There will still be piles of laundry on the dining room table, the drying rack full of Unmentionables will still be in the middle of the music room floor (!!!!), the children will have pulled every object from every drawer in the Den, and there will probably still be dishes from the weekend marinating on the counters. Betcha. (I will be leaving tomorrow at about 4:30 a.m., and won’t be home before about 7:00 p.m.. The rehearsers are arriving at around 5:30. In the Absence of Me…yeah. This place is going to be a wreck.) (MAYBE…I just won’t come home! That’s it! I shall run away! To somewhere tropical! I’ll change my name and dye my hair and no one will ever be the wiser, bwahahaha, it’s BRILLIANT, brilliant I tell you, MWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!)

And also there is all kinds of stuff I’m supposed to be doing for this same potluck. I do not have time for any of it. I shall have to invent the time. Fortunately, I have magic powers and do that sort of thing all the time.

Unfortunately, I usually wake up before I derive any actual good from all my magic workings. Curses, foiled again.

AND THEN, our nanny tosses off casually that she has an interview this morning. And then she got the job. And it’s “only” on the weekends and “only” impacts her a little bit on Fridays and Mondays, which we already had to arrange for one of us to be working from home on due to her school schedule.

And I swear to Dog, I had A Moment.

I want her to have this job. It’s better for her in terms of building her resume and all that. And we know full well we’ll lose her fairly soon-ish; she’s gotten her phlebotomy license, after all, and is about halfway through nursing school. This isn’t a Forever Job. This is a ‘get me through school’ job.

But I’m still just kind of…pouting. And feeling a bit sorry for myself. Don’t I have enough on my plate right now, Life? Seriously? Can you please just STOP with all the Drama for a while?

We need to get this into production by December 8…and this by December 6…and then the initial round of testing for That Really Big Huge Thing starts on January 9, so, you will have the whole thing recoded and ready to go by then, right…oh, and don’t forget this and that and the other and what the heck is this QC item…?

WORST OF ALL…I need to go to bed. There is no time to make cookies or tortillas or pies or anything. I will have to bear up without any fresh carbohydrates to see me through. WHEN WILL IT STOP, THE PAIN?!?!

(Oooooh, probably around…March 30. You know, when this contract expires and I’m no longer employed? So, um, yeah. There’s…that.)

(Seriously, I think…I need another Advil…)

Friday, November 18, 2011

Next, on Geriatric Adventures

I almost got into an accident on the way home from the optometrists today. Totally the fault of my new – and dreaded – bifocals.

SEE, I was driving along? And then I glanced down at the gauges? And they were, like, sharp and clear and easy to read?

And then I was so distracted by the Look At Road Signs, Look at Gas Gauge, Look at Road Signs Again, Look At Speedometer game that I almost drove off the road.

Bifocals: They are dangerous.

Now, don’t get me wrong: I’m still way getting used to them. I’m having to learn how to hold my head so that I’m peering through the right “half” of the lens for whatever-all it is that I’m doing.

Reading labels: Looking down.

Reading store shelf tags: Looking up.

But I have to admit, I did not expect them to be so…cool.

Nor did I fully understand just how…wide the variance was, between my long and short distance vision.

I knew that I constantly played the “glasses on, glasses off” game – off to look at your face, on to read your presentation, off to drive, on to shop. Except off again to see the BIG signs. But then on again to read the tags. Argh.

And while I was getting them tweaked around to more or less fit me, I was grousing that they were going to be worse than before. Worse, I tell you.


They suck.

Then I started driving, poised to rip them off my face if they proved distracting.

But they were fine. Actually, it was very nice. I generally rely on my keen sense of direction rather than street signs , because, uh, I can’t see them all that well. With or without my glasses.

Now I could see them.

And then when I glanced down to check how fast I was going, it really was kind of startling. It was so sharply focused – where I’m used to just kind of knowing that around there is the 40 mph mark – that I really was driving a little distracted for a minute there.

Glance up, glance down, glance up, glance down…

Yet again, I am astonished by the cleverness of my species. Of all the things to figure out, you know? Not only mashing two different prescription strengths together in the first place, but to then figure out how to do it so that there isn’t even the barest hint of a line between ‘reading’ and ‘distance’ – that’s danged clever.

I am trying to look clever

Y’all were right. They’re not bad. They’re actually really neat, and exactly what I needed.

Still don’t like that part, though. Because inside my own head, I am still maybe…oh…twenty-six. Maybe. Occasional downgrades to eleven, especially when I’m playing Toontown and some kid is mean to me, like, saying my hat is dumb or that I’m not using the right gags or something (What? I only play it to make sure it remains a suitable environment for the kids. Because I am a crazy-awesome and devoted mother that way.)

I have no choice when it comes to growing old. Unless I manage to get myself killed off earlier somehow [not high on my “to-do list,” thanks], it’s kind of inevitable for me. But growing upthat I can resist until the bitter end. And I intend to be one of those ultra-embarrassing-yet-oddly-cool grandmothers someday.

With a motorcycle.

And bifocals with big, purple frames, possibly with little bug wings coming off the sides of them. Because how awesome would THAT be?!

I know. I’ll go away now, and let you ponder the awesome of enormous purple-framed bifocals now with big old bug wings coming off the sides of them.

Why Tama will never make it in fashion design: Exhibit One…

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Multi-Linguist Faux Pas

At Stitches last year, I took a workshop in Continental style knitting. Being left-handed and all, I picked it up very quickly, and it felt very natural - or at least, like something that would fast BECOME natural.

However, as it turns out, it causes the tendons in my left elbow to start screaming really fast, so...I stick with throwing rather than picking.

Except that occasionally, I forget which language I'm speaking, and absent-mindedly work a row or two Continental-style.

My gauge is different when I knit Continental. Not by a huge, obvious amount, which I might possibly notice right away, but by an ever-so-slightly amount that I only notice Much Later...when I'm trying to smooth out a "weird wrinkle" and go, "Wait...is that row of stitches just a little SMALLER or something?!"

I doubt you can see it in this, because it's definitely like that "enormous" face-eating sit only visible to others if they use a microscope, but, yeah. Did it again. There's a "wrinkle" all the way around it, where I sat knitting away in tired, brainless Continental for an entire round and a half.

Oh well. It's for me...and thus I am going with the theory that I don't generally hold stilll long enough for such a minute detail to be noticed by anyone.

Which feels much better than 'nobody would ever be surprised by my attire being Not Exactly Neiman Marcus.'

In other news, my laptop is taking approximately six hundred years to boot this morning (I think it is installing something), so I have time to tell you my latest  Adventures on BART. I know - RIVETING!

So the other morning, I'm sitting there...on the 5:15 train put of Dublin, knitting with my eyes closed. Because there has to be SOMETHING good about five hundred miles of plain stockinette in the round, right? Plus, probably thanks to the Power of Suggestion, my right eye (the one with the blister) has been sore and stingy ever since my eye exam, so I find myself wanting to "rest" it more.

And sitting there with only ONE eye closed while knitting is, IMHO, even WEIRDER than siting there with BOTH of them closed. Be just my luck that the next serial killer would decide I was giving him a come-hither wink or something.

So, sitting there...knitting away on my fat-yarn, round-and-round, plain old stockinette...with my eyes closed.

Suddenly, this cold, skeletal hand clamps on my knee.

I jumped ten feet straight up, let out an ear-piercing squeak, and opened my eyes to find a 390-year-old Chinese lady squinting at me anxiously.

"Are you asleep while you work?!" she demanded.

As always when confronted with these situations, which happen to me, it seems, so often that you'd THINK - wrongly - that I would be downright SMOOTH at handling them, I went, "{strangled nonsensical sounds, vaguely word like, more confused than indignant, while inside my self-esteem is screaming, "Man the cannons! Load the adverbs! View at will - let's show this blackguard what happens to those who dare come against us!"}

(Aside: I'm getting worried. I think my laptop is STUCK. Many of my coworkers have suffered Blue Screen of Death lately...hope MegaBank isn't force-loading something stupid on us here...)

And then, we ended up chatting all the way to Embarcadro. About knitting, crochet, grandchildren, BART train cleanliness, lack of work ethic in Kids Today (ohmygah, bifocals and discourses on the work ethics of the latest generation - where's my cane? Where's my fiber pill? YOU KIDS GET OFFA MAH LAWN!!!!!!).

Very nice older-than-me lady.

Could work on her awareness of Personal Space a bit, though.

OK...time out, laptop. Time for a hard reboot. See y'all on the flip side...and watch out for those concerned old ladies with cold hands and vice-like grips.

They can REALLY ruin a good meditational reverie.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

But does it amount to a hills of beans?

It’s a funny thing about this line of work: Everything is interconnected. Really understanding things is seldom simple. A doesn’t just go to B in a nice, sedate line…it probably darts around the world, picking up lint from here, there and everywhere, skitters around getting updated and appended, deleted and re-added, a million times.

Then we get it and do stuff, based on other stuff.

It’s like leaning down from your chair to pick up a cord you see lying on the ground, and tugging on it. Huh. Nothing happened…that you know of.

…meanwhile, three rooms over and unbeknownst to you, an entire house of cards somebody has been working on day and night for five years just fell right over…

What I’m working on right now is one of those things where I’m simultaneously learning something completely new, and bringing everything I already know into the frame to see if the overall picture is making sense.

Also pronounced, “Falling down massive rabbit holes for hours on end trying to figure out how this field, right here, gets populated…”

It’s worse than the ‘one more row’ syndrome. In a lot of ways, it really is like a video game – time passes without me being aware of just how much of it has gone by. I’m constantly missing my trains, because I was ‘just one more thinging’ when I should have been shutting down and leaving.

On the one hand, it’s a tremendous blessing. The days go by fast, I’m not bored, and I’m paid rather well for doing it.

On the other hand…I’m tired. Really, REALLY tired. I don’t realize it until I finally pry myself away – and then it hits me like a truck. I make grandiose promises about all the things I’m going to do to achieve a better “home/life balance,” and then promptly get sucked back into minute little details, until I lose the very last of my brain power, ambition and energy and just kind of slump over in my chair, growling at anybody who comes near me and refusing to budge.

And then my desk at home looks like this.


Yes way.

Which of course, only makes me more grumpy.

I get up too early, and get home too late. I think too much about it. Then I say to myself, “Dude, seriously – you don’t own this. You’re out of here in March. Relax.”

But instead, I end up going, “Holy crap, that’s right, I’ve only got until March to get this thing put to bed!!!!”


I am hopeless.

Really, truly hopeless.

And then I wonder…at the end of the day…will any of it end up amounting to a hill of beans?

kidney beans

First round of kidney beans

Eh, probably not.

But I’ll have fun with it anyway.

Because otherwise, well…it would be no fun.

And what fun is that?

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

I’d roll my eyes, but it might hurt

I finally got around to getting an eye exam. It’s only been four years, and I’ve only been kvetching about my glasses “not working” for two of them, so, this is practically a new speed record for me.


ANYWAY, so, I made the appointment and then I dutifully trucked myself into the tidy little office where they proceeded to take all of my paperwork and blah blah blah, and then they asked me to read lines and barely kept from snickering when they handed me the card and said, “Just read this as you normally would…” and I held it out almost at arm’s length and then tilted it until it was almost horizontal while lifting my chin up and no matter how I tried not to, still squinted trying to make the little dots hold still and be WORDS, dammit.

For everybody except me, the fact that I was going to be getting bifocals was a foregone conclusion. I know they have no lines. I know nobody else is going to necessarily know I’ve “graduated” to bifocals. I know that eye health and comfort comes first. And I also know that just because you have bifocals does not mean you are contractually obligated to put on silly looking hats or start wearing nothing but muumuus.

{kicks at dirt, mutters} I just didn’t want to hafta NEED them yet…

But, I do. I so totally do. I’ve been doing the ‘schoolmarm’ thing for years, where I’ll yank my glasses waaaaaaay down my nose and then peer up at you over them. This is because I can’t read without them, BUT, I can’t see your face with them.

This is why mankind invented bifocals.

ANYWAY. Having already received this unsettling news, I spent a rather sulky fifteen minutes as my eyes dilated (joy) picking out new frames (fortunately with a great deal of assistance from a more fashionable staff member…I don’t think I’ll look like too huge a dork in the new ones).

And then we started the final phase of the eye exam.

And then the nice doctor went, “Huh.”

And then we went through the “look up, gooooood, now down? Goooooood. Now, all the way to the left…gooooooooooood…” game again.

And then he said, casually, “Tragically, you are going to be blind within a month, BLIND, BLIND I TELL YOU, OH, THE GRIEF AND SORROW OF IT ALL, YOU ARE DOOMED, DOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMED, POOR CREATURE!!!! OK, so, I’m seeing something that might be a slight anomaly between your left and right eye. I’d like to use a stronger dilating drop and see if I can get a better look at it.”

To which I said, eloquently, “Oh, uh, rokay…?”

And then he seared the top five layers of…um…whatever eyeballs are actually made of…off my eyes. And rendered them incapable of filtering any light. Plus put me in this bizarre place where my long distance vision was actually better than usual but my ability to fine-focus (reading, television, KNITTING!!!!!!!) was so badly impaired it was just…not OK.

But at least then he was able to categorically state that it wasn’t this thing, it was this other thing, which is not exactly common or particularly good but it’s also not anything bad per se except that it can be an indicator of something-something-something and that I should use lubricating drops and come back in six months so we could see if it got any bigger or smaller or perhaps built a little house for itself and started homesteading – because the cattle could be a real @*^&@ on your retinas, you know?

(Optometry in general leaves me feeling like a magician’s rabbit…one minute I’m all snug in my warm, dark little hole and the next I’m being held up in front of a shouting throng by some overdressed con artist thinking, “Wait, WTF?! That was a hat?! When did that become a hat?! And what does abracadabra even mean?!?!”) (“Is it better one, or two? Gooood. One, or two? Gooooooood. One, or two, or about the same?” how did he KNOW they were going to be about the same?!?! - sometimes, I half want to lie and say ‘oh, no, two was much better!’ just to mess with him…) (…except that then, I’d end up with Cyclops Vision or something, so, I don’t. But I think about it, every single time…)

Afterwards, as I was complaining mentioning that a) this really hurt and b) like, the diffused lighting felt an awful lot like lightning bolts zapping straight into my brain and c) my ability to read the receipts and stuff they kept shoving at me was what might be termed minimal, he tosses off ever-so-casually that Oh. Ya. Blue eyes tend to be like that, actually. They take the drops harder and more thoroughly, and they also tend to experience more of the unpleasant side effects such as light sensitivity and ‘flashing’…and that sometimes they take longer to shake it off as well. Should be no more than six hours but could actually take a DAY OR TWO, he tosses over his shoulder as he runs for his life…

Only the thought of how much the bright orange jumpsuit would have hurt my eyes right about then kept me from murdering him.

I had planned to be out of the (home) office for about two hours for this. I ended up having to take the rest of the entire day off. I had some delusions at first. I got home and unlocked my work laptop and…a bunch of…ink smears, floated up at me. In a pathetic and useless gesture, I put on my old glasses. Great. Now, it’s even worse.

I read through one simple email. I picked out the words one by one. I began to develop a pounding headache. The light from the screen was torture. The words were twisted, blurry, dancing-dancing-dancing. Dammit.

So I opened up an email and typed in the generic distribution group I use for general ‘administrivia’ messages – when I’m going to be out of the office or have brought cookies to work or whatever. And I typed in a message about my eyes and that I was going to go sulk rest them in a nice, dark room and give them a little while to un-dilate themselves.

And then I proceeded to compulsively try again to read things. Again. And again. And again. And when I wasn’t trying to read? I was pacing. Or, trying to go outside to look at the garden. Which I could not do because the light, the light, it burnssssssssss…!!

Yeah. As it turns out, I’m not very good at waiting patiently for something.

I know. It was a shock to me, too.

Because I’m a slow learner, I then took out my knitting – which is this Bernat Fair Isle Yoke Sweater…which I only just cast on and the pattern for which reads like, “First, do knit-one-purl-one rib forever…then do straight stockinette for forever plus five years…and then it will get mildly interesting!”

I finally settled on this project, after a great deal of indecision, precisely because of its simplicity – because I felt it was something I could continue working on, no matter how tired I was, how dark it was on the train or bus, how stressed out or distracted I was, etc. etc. etc.

So I said to myself, with great confidence, “It’s OK, Self. You can still work on this. Heck, you worked on it all the way home yesterday while staring out the window most of the time! You don’t need to be able to see-see to work on it!!”

And then I learned something. I frequently think I’m “not looking” at my knitting – and it’s true. I can knit in a movie theater. I can watch TV and knit. And I do stare out the train window a lot while knitting simple things.


I also glance, in passing at it a lot. And without these swift glances, I become lost. And once you become lost on a k1p1 rib?

You end up with seed stitch.

Possibly quite a lot of it.


And the whole time, my eyes were burning. And itching. And even indirect sunlight was the bane of my existence.

It was not the best of days.


I’m getting bifocals.

{pause to contemplate the emotional trauma}

You know…I never should have gotten out of bed today.

I just shouldn’t have.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Like, love, life

This morning as I groped in darkness around the kitchen, I made a CHILLING discovery: We were almost out of coffee.

{dramatic music!}

How could this have happened? Dear $Deity, HOW?!?!

There was just barely enough left for two scant travel mugs of liquid ambition...and it is my habit to make AND take two Contigos worth with me every day.  Which would have made this news of having enough for same a big sigh of relief EXCEPT that there is this SLIGHT wrinkle called "the husband will also want - nay, NEED - coffee this morning.

I waffled for a moment.

Then I left the second for the husband.

And I will now preserve my dignity and the sense of nobility around this by not giving the precise count of how many times I sort of wished I hadn't when my share ran out not only less than halfway to BART, but when I was arguably only a quarter awake.

And then I arrived at the office, marched into the Starbucks, grabbed a bag of coffee and presented my gift card.

And then they gave me a free peppermint mocha. Because they are my REAL, TRUE FRIENDS.

Plus I have a carrot muffin. And it has dried cherries it. And I just started a new sweater that will hopefully get a whack of bulky yarn out of my stash, thus making it look that much less crazy-alot.

So to sum up: I like ny coffee.

I (apparently) love my husband.

And life is good.

Monday, November 07, 2011

An advantage to the early hour

Even though I didn't notice it for almost an hour, nobody witnessed my demented post-hat-wearing hair.

Or try to steal my apple turnovers.

Which is good. Because I would have slapped their hands HARD if they had.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

It’s perfectly logical

So, a couple hours ago I was heading upstairs to deal with the Perma-Pile™ (you know, that pile of crap that, no matter how often or diligently you shovel, always seems to persist in the same.exact.spot?!) in the hallway outside our bedroom door – the very last thing on my extensive ‘things to do instead of having fun on my PTO days’ list.

Yesterday, I slogged through about two and a half (possibly three) hours of anime while (almost) finishing my Galatian sweater. Because I am THAT dedicated to the cause.

Our nanny was here today, because it seems a tad unfair to cause my unpaid days off to result in her having unpaid days off. And besides, it left me free to do other things, like remembering at the last second that I wanted to go to Supercuts for a new “look” (just a little less ‘drowned rat’ and perhaps a bit more ‘can actually SEE because the bangs aren’t actually in my eyeballs, thx’) and get the ^*&@ing tire fixed on Albert the Civic – which I did not actually accomplish because funny story there…SEE, the tires came from Big O. Which means that they will fix or replace them free of charge when These Sorts of Things happen.

Which means that I am taking the car to Big O for the repair, because of course I am.

So I dutifully limp over there on my pretty-much-flat tire (I didn’t want to put any extra air in it, because I wanted to be able to point at the obviously deflated tire and say, “THAT ONE!” and not have them give me the ‘oh goodie, another crazy female who doesn’t know a perfectly fine tire from a flat one!’ look because I’d just topped it off with air on my way over.)

And as I was about to pull into their parking lot, there, in huge letters on their otherwise empty window, was the notice WE HAVE MOVED, and a new address.

Huh. Well. Alrighty then.

So I went the wrong way on Eleventh (because, of course I did) and then I tried to turn around and there was this weird ‘I didn’t see you, you didn’t see me, and then Crazy Happened’ thing that happened in the parking lot I was using as my turnaround spot, and man.

Nobody hit anybody else and all like that, but let’s just say that if a cop had happened to be driving by right when we were doing that fancy little ballet we put on this afternoon? He woulda made his ticket quota for the month.

I strongly suspect that my dance partner hit the accelerator when she meant to hit the brake. And this resulted in her suddenly bulleting at me as I was braking because I was doing the “Ack, there’s another car already in this particular corner of the space-time continuum?!” thing, and then I realized that I was about to get creamed BUT!, I could totally get out of the way if I pulled a kind of 007-Meets-Mario thing, so that’s what I did, however, it was a rural-restaurant parking lot, which isn’t so much as parking lot as a field with lots and lots and lots of heavy gravel?

Eeeeeeeyeah. Looked like Albert was auditioning for a spot on the next Dukes of Hazzard movie or something.

Plus I spilled my imaginary martini. Curses.

a-HEM. Moving on.

And then I went the right way on Eleventh for about sixty nine miles until I found them!


They aren’t quite moved yet! There are many, many cars in their parking lot and every evidence that eventually there will be a tire shop there…but no actual humans to be found.

So. The tire still has a slow leak.

But it is now nicely filled up, because when I got home I used our air compressor to fill it up. Again. (It will be moderately pancaked in about four-five days.) (Argh.)

BUT WHEN I GOT HOME!, I said to myself, “Self! There is only one thing left on your to-do list, and that is the upstairs Perma-Pile™. GO FORTH AND MAKE WITH THE HOME-FINDING FOR THE PERMA-PILE!!!”

Thus encouraged, I charged upstairs and began putting things away! I put away three books! I removed two bags of donations to their waiting spot in the garage! I put away two mailing boxes, and my seed container.

And then our nanny said, innocently, “Hey. Do you have any good crochet scarf patterns that use four colors of yarn?”

And that’s why the next three hours (and counting) were spent on Ravelry.

And why two of my ‘learn to knit’ books and three sets of needles went home with our nanny.

And why I’m suddenly up to my knees in yarn that has been pulled out of everywhere to be held up against this or that pattern, evaluated for suitableness of both pattern and train-ability, and not put away again after being discarded because the next pattern might be perfect for it.

And why the Perma-Pile™ remains four feet high and probably will stay that way for another six weeks or so.

It’s just perfectly logical, right?