Monday, March 30, 2009

Still Knitting

So I really have been knitting, albeit not as much as I would have expected over a long weekend.

I finished the first Wisterious Monkey - I love how it's looking, but find it impossible to photograph. Here's the texture:
And here's something kind of close to the correct color, but not really:
The wool/elastic turned out to be trickier to work with than I expected - I had to rip back a bit since it was starting to pool unexpectedly and looked like it was two different yarns with the same colorway:
I thought I would be going to clinic at the Yarnery for the sleeves this week but I don't like the way the seam looks so I guess I'll go this week for seams and next week for sleeves:
This is the third button band (don't ask):
We had fun going out to dinner out with Girl-child home on Sunday:
What a pair!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Young At Heart

Your result for The What is your REAL age Test...

You are 44 years old!!

Take The What is your REAL age Test



Saturday, March 28, 2009

Advertising the Library

So let's hear it for my VERY FIRST COMMENT BY A PERSON WHO DOESN'T KNOW ME (woot!).

If I weren't such an idiot I would be able to e-mail her a note, but I haven't found her e-mail yet...

Anyway, apparently the Wyoming libraries' campaign that used mud flaps with a naked woman reading a book (see previous post) was not popular with some ... which reminded me of that 2005 Minneapolis Library campaign that many people didn't like.

As an example, take a look at this post from (and, just for the record, I thought that campaign was clever too):

May 9, 2005

The Minneapolis Public Library is trying to promote the library with an ad campaign featuring "famous" librarians. Their picks? J. Edgar Hoover, Mao Tse Tung, Cassanova, and Batgirl! A concerned individual writes:

The Iibrary is supposed to stand for freedom of information, access to all, and democracy. Mao and Hoover are the antithesis of these things - both of them ruined many lives, prevented free speech, and used fear to gain power. Mao killed, tortured and imprisoned thousands of people. Hoover was instrumental in doing surveillance against people during the McCarthy era. He spied on Martin Luther King, and was a bigot, a homophobe, and a racist. In the 60's, during the Berrigan brothers' trial he even had a real librarian imprisoned because she refused to testify against them! Why then, use these people's images - at all- when there's so many better people to pick from?

Let the library know that you find these ads offensive. Also let them know if you're a person that Hoover or Mao would have silenced (eg. person of colour, an artist, etc.). You can also contact the Friends of the library. You can suggest other famous librarians for their ads.

(Personally, I think these people need to find a sense of humor.)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Does John Ashcroft Know About This?

It's work related ... really ... I found it on ALA's electronic, weekly update ... who knew they had such a good sense of humor in Wyoming?

They have mudflaps too. Take a look at it here.

It makes me giggle.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

My Director

Your result for The Director Who Films Your Life Test...

Steven Soderbergh

Your film will be 55% romantic, 36% comedy, 48% complex plot, and a $ 38 million budget.

Filmography: Sex Lies and Videotape, Traffic, Ocean's Eleven, Ocean's Twelve, Erin Brockovich, and various other homemade independent films. He may just want to follow you around for a few months and construct a film out of that. Your humor is either dry or non-existant, but your life is somewhat exciting romantically because you're "bad." At least you'll be surrounded by the best-looking people who will be cast as your friends, who in real life are probably just as good-looking. Then when he wins the Academy Award for your film, he won't have to make anymore "Ocean's" films.

Take The Director Who Films Your Life Test
at HelloQuizzy

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

New Words and Other Stuff

Things I've stumbled upon recently:

Neuroeconomics* I'd never heard the term before. These are the people who are trying to figure out how we ended up with the economy in the state it's in. Take a look a the books written on the topic here.

Good luck with that, I'd say.

*not to be confused, by the way, with Voodoo Economics or Freakonomics

I also found out that there is such a thing as a Black Velvet beer cocktail. This merits further investigation. I find the idea of a beer cocktail rather silly since I've always seen beer drinkers as one group of people and consumers of cocktails as another, completely different group.

There are also two things I'd like to share about the Library of Congress' good sense (of humor) in subject classification: 1) that snakes are found under QL666 and, 2) that Biblical studies are filed under BS. Of course, it is a system based on the orgainzation of Thomas Jefferson's personal library.

And today's favorite news story would be the one about the 93 year old man who is a certified survivor of both the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings.

Makes you wonder, doesn't it?

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Old Pictures

So, Franklin's unforgettable capture of a baby not-smiling brought to mind an old photo; this was taken the first time we took the kids to Disneyland (1996?).

I don't remember why Boy-child was unhappy, but there you have it:
I can't believe, really, how accurately this photo illustrates their personalities.

In the meantime, Girl-child was cleaning her room and found these from the summer of the Lucy statues in St. Paul (2002).

Taken in front of the Science museum:

Thursday, March 19, 2009


This is one of the most amazing maps I've ever seen.

Check it out here.

It's U.S. immigration since 1880. Check out different decades. Check out different countries of origin. Alter the bubble sizes. Have fun. Comment, please.

Also, for a visual of World War II - If Maps Could Fight take a look here. A playful twist on war - how creative is that?!? (yes, in a sick way, but creative nonetheless)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Button Band

The colorway is called Wisterious, the pattern Monkey so I've dubbed this pair Wisterious Monkey:
I forgot to mention this pair which is made with Soxx Appeal - a wool/elastic combo that is pretty cool to work with (I wanted something in stockinette but using a new yarn for variety, even though I haven't made the second sock of the Pair I Accidentally Started in Chile):

The button band is done, I think, although I may have to re-do the button holes:
I'm not really doing anything else.

The weather is lovely. Book club is tonight.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Long Forgotten

Many years ago, when I was an AFS student in Caracas, I refused to let anyone call me Anita (the diminutive of Anne in Spanish) because of Anita Bryant and her anti-gay campaign.

This was something that I had totally forgotten about and, in fact, there are people in the Spanish speaking world who call me Anita now; it doesn't bother me.

All of this came back to me over the weekend when P and I went to see Milk.

It was a good movie. I remember a lot of the story; I was coming of age at the time, but I'm glad that the movie filled in some holes and reminded me of different things that I had forgotten, or that I understand differently now that I am an adult. It made me happy to see people fighting for their rights and gaining from their activism. It made me sad that he was killed. It made me sad too, because it reminded me of friends lost to AIDS since then.

Sean Penn is a fantastic actor. I'm glad he won the Oscar.

So of course the question came up after seeing the movie, "What ever happened to Anita Bryant"

The answer is not pretty. She paid dearly for her campaign against the gay community.

Makes you wonder.

Karma and all that.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

The Socks

I started a Monkey sock using pink Smooshy:
I finished the first sock of the Pair I Accidentally Started in Chile:
And P's psychedelic socks are done:

The sweater seaming has started.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

More Weird News

Evo Morales went in front of the U.N. chewing a coca leaf.

I'm not kidding.

Read about it here.

It's a hard headline to beat, but I'll keep looking.

(and btw, the weird, wormy thing in the pot on the previous post is a brain cactus)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Blizzard, Schmizzard

Well, the storm was a bust. It rained too much and then we didn't get much snow but I guess it's going to get cold now; that means we get the worst of both worlds.

Oh well.

I've got some photos from last weekend and yesterday stored up so here we go:

Yesterday I found these in the Conservatory and the Library at the Arboretum:

This is what the big storm that wasn't looked like from the library:
And from the outside:

Summit Avenue last weekend brought a surprise:
Here's a detail of her shawl:

This was the other day during a meltdown:

Can you guess what part of the city this is?
Outside the St Paul Student Center:
This is a cool building in St Paul that I pass every day but only noticed in the sunshine recently:
It has some wonderful details:

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Storm Brewing

First of all, for those of you who wanted to find the Cultural Identity Test from the previous post, I've added the link (sorry). It's actually not quite as silly as the others - give it a whirl.

This morning there is a storm coming our way. Of course, I have a "retreat" for work at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum so I have to drive to Chaska instead of hopping on my handy bus.


One of the things that we are going to try this time is, because the storm warning is for Hennepin but not Ramsey county and we live in Ramsey, a mere three blocks from the river which is the dividing line between the counties, we thought we'd head down to the river and watch the storm from our side ...

I found some interesting tidbits in the Audubon magazine yesterday at work. First of all, there's an octopus who loves to play with a Rubik's cube. Seriously. It's her favorite toy. Read about it here.

Second, there's a guy who does beetle art. We have some beetle art at the library, but this guy's art is for art's sake and not for didactic or illustrative purposes. Take a look at it here. Interesting story.

And finally, from WCCO, a bit of weird news ... there's a 79 year old woman in Fair Oaks, California who teaches adult tap dancing. I guess sometimes people don't read the sign/adverts quite right and they think it's for lap dancing. It's usualy men who are confused. Imagine their surprise when they find a 79 year old woman in charge. I like her response to the men when they call ... "Helen says when men call, she just tells them to bring their daughters over so she can teach them to tap dance. That usually ends the conversation."

Way to go, Helen.

Friday, March 6, 2009

I'm Sticking With the Savant Part

Your result for The Cultural Identity Test...

The Kaffeeklatsch Savant

55% Traditionalism, 74% Knowledge, 71% Diversity, 36% Contemporary and 44% Untraditionalism!


You Scored 36% Kaffeeklatsch Savant, Congratulations!

Hey there, Modern Thinker! At the forefront of your generation, you possess the uncanny ability to ride the waves of untraditionalism that course through our fickle society and remain at the crest! Ever aware of the changing tides of politics and philosophy, you have your own niche and you stick to it. With a healthy disdain for hypocrisy and pretense, you have the temerity to say so, and are well aware of the unpleasant facts that your contemporaries try to brush under the rug. Perhaps you're even something of a cynic!

Not into the latest headlines or 'ground breaking' news? Don't really care about that archaeological discovery in Tibet that suggests Cro-Magnon man had twenty five teeth instead of twenty seven? You find other cultures interesting, but you most likely won't go out of your way to do anything about it. You know where you stand, and that's the bottom line. Well, you aren't alone, and you're actually in some pretty good company. Oscar Wilde, John Simon, Dorothy Parker and George Bernard Shaw were some of the great modern thinkers of their time, and they maintained their positions by steadfastly refusing to succumb to either the preposterous notions of the past or the rambling obsequiousness of trendy and idealistic fads of the day.

Less of an idealist and not so devoted to traditions, there's a good chance your idea of the world is your own and you don't necessarily care about what others think you should be thinking. The past? The future? This is the present, and no amount of planning for the future or lamenting the past will change that. So, you probably have a good idea of where you stand and what makes sense. And then again if nothing makes sense, it's ok, because it probably isn't that important anyways. Apathy towards current affairs can be a good thing often times. After all, are those vicissitudinous ideas the politicians spout all the time really that meaningful? They really just want your vote, and you aren't fooled by all the clever talk.

You were scored as a Modern Thinker because you most consistently chose answers relating to contemporary ideas. Concepts like race, tradition, history, and your heritage don't appear to have all that great an attraction for you, which is just fine, because most of those things don't seem to affect your day to day life. If you can get along without worrying about the traditional mating headgear of the Papu Papu tribe of Eastern Samoa, then that's just one less thing to worry about. And if you do care about such things, then you've managed to find the perfect blend between contemporary ideas and the enriching intellectualism that is so readily available to questing minds.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Another Chance to Vote for Senator

Well, it's not exactly voting ... but the National Wildlife Federation Action Fund has a game posted that allows you to guess who will be seated for the open Senate seat, what day that will happen and, for a "tie" breaker, what color tie he'll be wearing when he's sworn in.

Click here to play the game. You can win a Congressional Directory signed by the seated senator if you guess correctly!
(photo courtesy of Sweet Pea)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Square Root Day

Apparently today is a Square Root Day (3-3-09) which only happens nine times every century. The last one was 2-2-04 and the next will be 4-4-16.

Magic can happen anywhere.

Mozart doesn't care much, however:

In the meantime, this is what I'm doing to maintain a semblance of sanity...

I'm reading about a notorious double agent from WWII:
My book mark is a souvenir from the 50th anniversary of the University of Salamanca choir, which we went to on a family vacation in May 2000. I belonged to the choir during the school year 1979-80 when I was a student there.

This is where we used to practice:
(Gracias, Fede, por el comentario, y saludos a todos)

On the knitting front, the sleeves are coming along nicely after a few false starts:
Actually, I have ripped them out enough that I probably could have five sleeves by now, but I don't, I have two sleeves that will be done relatively soon.

P's psychedelic socks are coming along nicely; this is the second:
And can you believe, that sock I accidentally started in Chile is now done to the toe:
Yesterday I had to go to the LYS to pick up reinforcement thread. Amazing, given my "stash" (which P was trying not to make fun of me about yesterday - thanks for that):
The gal at The Yarnery was asking me if more than one spool was necessary for a pair of socks. I told her no ... she wondered ... asked if I had color issues ... really, it's hard to explain ... but in my defense, I just want to say that I am not quite crazy yet.

If I make a hamburger dress, then maybe you can call me crazy (we all have our limits):

(turns out it's crocheted, but you get my drift)

Monday, March 2, 2009

Diagram Prize Revisited

Ok, so my good friend Sue got Strip and Knit With Style from the library and we had a look; it's an ok book but the title isn't really that strange... (thanks for sharing, Sue).

I still prefer Baboon Metaphysics for the winner.

And today I present to you my first suggestion for the next list: An Anecdotal History of Nematology (J.M.Webster, K.B.Eriksson & D.G.McNamara Editors).

Also, one that was missed in years past: Control of Sex in Fishes (ok, there was no Diagram Prize in 1974, but it could be a contender for a weirdest title ever prize, dontcha think?)

I'll get back to work now...

Happy Monday.