Tuesday, January 2, 2007

New Year, So Far

My new year, so far:


A bit of cauldron work turned what was left of the Christmas roast into consommé clear enough to read a newspaper through a bowlful. Pity the headline isn't happier.


A set of faux tortoise Swallow dpns recently emerged from the wormhole roundabout Exit 151, so I put them to work on a pair of fingerless mitts. The yarn is "fat" Claudia Handpaint in colorway Poppy. Last summer some shipments of Claudia fingering were unaccountably more like light sportweight – too heavy for the project I bought it for, but just right for pretty mitts.

Fat Claudia mitts

Swallow casein needles are nicely bendy and seem warm to the touch no matter the ambient temperature – perfect for outdoor knitting at busstops etc this mild winter (metal dpns quickly become too cold for me to handle comfortably). At SnB someone advised against snacking on them because they have a bitter, lingering taste. Er, I've never tried them myself – good tip.

On New Year's eve, DH and I met some friends at First Night. We thought the mild weather would encourage a large turnout,First Night but attendance seemed 'way down from previous years, no doubt because many of the various attractions were somewhat lackluster. Apart from time with friends, my favorite part of the evening was when a trombone player from the New Jersey Symphony demonstrated an astonishingly loud and musical "horn" made from a trombone mouthpiece, 10 feet (3 m) of clear aquarium tubing, and a funnel, which sounded different when the tubing was straight or coiled. That's just sad. Even the midnight fireworks show was greatly attenuated, only six minutes long. Annoyingly, as we were heading home we could see fireworks going off all around Exit 151.

The cure for New Year's eve grumpiness was to leaf through my new books. This was a Christmas of books – I received enough reading materialCrafty Christmas books in various genres to last through several blizzards (although it's misty rather than snowy at the moment). Most of the crafty books are celebrated titles recognizable at 20 paces even from a partial view, but the one currently getting the lion's share of attention is a slim, somewhat obscure volume, The Whole Craft of Spinning by Carol Kroll. It's encyclopedic in its list of spinnable fibers (dandelion fluff? milkweed floss?? deer hair???) and bargain-priced. There's even advice on spinning yak down, still my personal Everest of fibers.

That helped to decide what I'll be spinning for the Spin to Knit Swap, which I think will have to be a stealth project. But I've been in touch with my "downstream" pal, a spinner of formidable accomplishments – just a bit intimidating! (I'm waiting to hear from my "upstream" pal.) For all that, I'm looking forward to the challenges of S2K with considerably more enthusiasm than the Y2K scare. DH was on standby alert that New Year's Eve – happily, there was no meltdown.

Last but not least, I happened upon photographic evidence that the blog was indeed abducted by space aliens. That would explain a lot. Image courtesy the Street Sign Generator.

Jersey Knitter on Mars

Amazing to think the first image to show the Earth as a distant blue marble over an alien horizon, Earthrise at Christmas, was taken by the crew of Apollo 8 while in lunar orbit 38 years ago.

1 comment:

Deborah said...

Yeah First Night here at exit 165 wasn't very exciting either, mostly for the preschool and geriatric set.

The best ever First nights were spent in Maplewood where I used to live. They were all serious, big time artist who either didn't bother to get gigs for New Years or rather they preferrred to perform in the neighborhood where they lived.