| Thursday, June 30, 2005
Wednesday, June 29, 2005
Tuesday, June 28, 2005
My Dad sent me a letter about his little next-door-neighbour, Emma Bickel. Emma is four-and-a-half years old and last week she slipped while playing in the sprinkler and broke her femur. She's going to have to spend most of the summer in a half-body cast. Poor little thing! So to keep her occupied, she's trying to collect postcards from all around the world. I'm sending her a postcard, and you should too! (Even if you're from the U.S.; she's trying to get all 50 States.) So if you can spare postage and a few minutes of your time, leave me a comment with an e-mail address and I'll send your her details. (I'd post it here but I don't want to create a Craig Shergold situation.) Thanks...
(We interrupt this weblog for a special Big Brother related announcement.) Kick. Ass. She may be a John Howard lover, but this week Kate can do no wrong with me. Rather than uselessly take three nomination points off herself, she chose to face public opinion and take them off Christie instead... resulting in five nominees this week! Even better, one of those nominees is Glenn the Shearer, who I hate with the intensity of a thousand suns. Come on, Aussie women! Let's get this affront to humanity out of the house and off our televisions. Even if you don't watch the show, you should still phone in a vote to get the lying root rat bastard out. I won't even bother bringing up the awful Michelle situation - even Gretel was feeling sorry for her - but him then immediately making plans to get on Kate was disgusting. My jaw dropped tonight during the clip of Geneva talking to the guys in the bathroom, when she left and Glenn turned to the other guys and said, "We were all thinking it, right? *pause* She looked like f**kin' sh*t." HE MADE OUT WITH HER A FEW WEEKS AGO, and then he turned around and said nasty things to the other boys behind her back, just because he likes someone else now. It's every thirteen-year-old girl's WORST NIGHTMARE. The Shearer must go!
Monday, June 27, 2005
Sunday, June 26, 2005
Saturday, June 25, 2005
Friday, June 24, 2005
Thursday, June 23, 2005
I was checking out my referers list and it looks like I'm still getting hit hard by comment spammers and message board scammers. GAH! I figured the easiest thing to do was just delete a few of the problematic posts. People take everything out of context.
Wednesday, June 22, 2005
Monday, June 20, 2005
Sunday, June 19, 2005
(It's probably pointless posting that since his company doesn't let him read my site anymore, but I'll say it anyway in the hopes that someone else in my family will see it and tell him about it, and if they do, could they perhaps mention to him that he hasn't e-mailed me in MONTHS, and couldn't he maybe drop his first-born a line every once in a while? Thanks.)
I feel like a little kid that's found out DisneyWorld didn't live up to the hype. For the past two weeks you haven't been able to turn on a television in Sydney without hearing a manic guy screaming about the "MASSIVE LIQUIDATION SALE" going on at Fox Studios. "REPOSSESSED AND SEIZED GOODS! NAME BRANDS FOR A FRACTION OF THE COST! ADIDAS! VICTORIA'S SECRET! STAR WARS! LEVIS - $20! HARRY POTTER - 10 CENTS! MILLIONS OF BRAS! CDS AND DVDS! AHHHH!" Through sheer force of repetition I found it sinking into my brain. I started to get excited at the thought of all those bargains. "I could really use some new jeans," I thought. "Ooh, and the Snook's been after some new T-shirts." I talked myself into it. So tonight I finally caved and headed out there with the Barkers. What a load of crap it turned out to be. It made the Shipshe Flea Market look like Bloomingdale's. It was a big warehouse staffed by indifferent backpackers and dodgy looking types with walkie-talkies. We didn't find any Star Wars stuff, nor any Levis. The "massive" discounts all seemed to have been taken off massively inflated recommended retail prices. I found myself grabbing things because they were "on sale," only to realize that I wouldn't buy them from Kmart for the same price. I ended up getting a a comforter (which the Aussies called a "quilt"), a quilt cover, a Harry Potter magnet, two crap CDs (Acker Bilk's Reflections and The Very Best of the Allman Brothers, which I got because it will forever remind me of my roommater Eileen), and a packet of socks. SOCKS. I am officially old. I left feeling a little bit wiser and a lot more jaded. If you can't believe in warehouse sales of Star Wars merchandise, what can you believe in?
Saturday, June 18, 2005
This is the first unveiling of my latest knitting project, a cabled jumper for the Snook. The pattern is from the Sirdar Denim Book of Aran Knits (which for some damn reason isn't up on our site, so I had to link to it elsewhere). He wanted something warm but not itchy, something like a sweatshirt that he could wear around the house. So I'm knitting it in Denim Sport Aran (wool, cotton, and acrylic blend), which worked really nicely on my sampler sweater. I'm calling it the Looking Glass Sweater because, with all the naiveté of a rookie knitter, I decided to adapt the pattern to be knit in the round instead of flat. So I cast on the body stitches, knit my ribbing, and then knit the first round of the pattern. Then I stopped DEAD IN MY TRACKS. The first problem is that this annoying pattern writes everything out in words instead of using a simple, succint chart. (I hate words.) It wouldn't be such a bit issue except for problem two: every even-numbered round has to be knit backwards, and every single stitch has to be inverted (knits become purls, etc.). This is because in the original, the even-numbered rounds were on the wrong-side of the garment, and I'm knitting it from the front-side only. At any rate, I spent about two hours tearing my hair out before I cracked open Excel and plotted my own damn chart. It's now a hundred times easier. I still like the concept of every other row being inverted from the original though, like some sort of Mobius strip or 4-dimensional space, which is why I've given it the name that I have. Never let it be said that knitters are not philosophical!
On a side note, cables are really hard to photograph! If you use the flash you lose all shadow and definition of the cables. This is the best I could do without the flash. As you can see, the sweater has panels of double moss stitch on each side, followed by a braid, a section of slip-stitch ribbing, and a triple intertwining central cable. Pretty neat, huh?
Friday, June 17, 2005
Thursday, June 16, 2005
AVI: small (1.5MB), large (5.4MB)
MPG: small (3.0MB), large (10.0MB)
Yesterday was exactly three weeks since I was promised a replacement iMac G5. Unfortunately upon contacting the company, it seems they're still dicking me around. It's going to be yet another week. That makes more than TWO MONTHS that the machine's been sitting dead on my desk. To rub even more salt in the wound, they're now telling me that data recovery isn't covered by the warranty and I'll have to pay for that myself. Granted, I have 90% of it backed up (from the last time the damn machine broke down, which was a mere four months ago), so it isn't a huge loss, but there were a few dozen new photos that I'd be upset to lose. I just wrote a fairly scathing reply back stating that I'd be filing formal complaints all over the place and it seems like them covering the costs of recovery is the least they could do. Otherwise it looks like the Snook and I will have to shell out a hundred bucks for a Firewire hard drive enclosure, pry the drive out of the machine, and see if we can back it up ourselves. Bastards.
Update: I just filed an official complaint with the Office of Fair Trading.
SQUEEE! My good buddy Kelly McMahon just sent me a link to the official RENT trailer. Holy crap, how did I miss that it's coming out so soon? It's like I can feel the Christian Bale lust fading as my long-dormant Adam Pascal crush begins to bloom again. His long hair does look kinda wacky though. (That said, the two-second glimpse of "Roger leading his punk band" ROCKED MY WORLD.) It really does look like he's going to be the central character of the film. I think Rosario Dawson is going to be a great Mimi. Other than that, I'm just tickled to see so many of the cast back together. Anthony Rapp looks to be given short shrift (in the trailer, at least) but Jesse Martin seems to be nicely featured (and deservedly so, since he's probably the only recognizable face to most of America). I wonder if they're going to keep it a true musical, where the songs spontaneously arise out of the action, or whether they're going to do some cheat like in Chicago, where the songs are just fantasies in one character's head. I wonder how well it will translate to film, seeing as how the best part of the theatrical version was feeling like you were really there, that you were really part of the whole experience. (The finale - with Mark shining his camera all over the audience - used to bring me to tears.) Man, I just can't wait to see this! And hey, there's a blog too. It's nice to know that the Larson family is so involved.
Wednesday, June 15, 2005
Tuesday, June 14, 2005
Yes, it's true. As Tracey noticed, that was me knitting with the Nuala, the Channel 7 weathergirl, on the evening news tonight. A bunch of us from the shop went down to help promote the Salvation Army's Knitting for our Homeless event this weekend. Man, my hair looked RED! The Snook's extracting the video and I'll have it posted in the morning.
After the newscast I headed into Glebe for my catch-up Weight Watchers meeting (since yesterday's was cancelled because of the holiday). Again, I LOST WEIGHT. That doesn't sound remarkable because you people don't know what I ate this past weekend. On Friday night the Barkers watched me eat a veal schnitzel the size of a dinner plate with a side of deep-fried potatoes and wash it all down with three pints of beer. (Mmmmm, beer.) And I still lost over a kilo! My weight loss is now defying the LAWS OF THERMODYNAMICS. I can't explain it. It's like a sign from the universe telling me that my efforts to get rid of this virus are ALL IN VAIN, because it's a GOOD VIRUS, and I love it and want to keep it forever. My precious, precious virus.
Oh, yeah, and so I ended up doing some more famewhoring, because there was a journalist at our meeting covering the Weight Watchers group leader pay dispute (which is spearheaded by our leader). The journo explained that nobody had to be photographed if they didn't want to, but most of us ended up hanging around. The guy took a bunch of pictures from behind and then asked if anybody was willing to go up front for a few. Nobody moved. Finally I was like, "Sure, why not? I'm not from this bloody country anyway." So I stood up and told my little story while the the photographer circled the room. Later I asked the journalist where the story would run and she said - barring any legal complications - it should appear in Good Weekend sometime soon.
So keep your eyes out for my newly skinny form, soon coming to every form of media in Australia. I expect to be appearing on Neighbours next year...
Friday I had my first experience with dentistry outside the U.S. I know, I know... I've been living overseas for, what, over five years now? But we've got private health insurance now and I felt like it was finally time to do something about the way my wisdom teeth keep flaring up in this INTENSELY PAINFUL WAY every few months. Sure enough, it looks like they're going to have to come out. (The bottom ones, anyway.) I'm not sure how I feel about that. I've never had an operation. Everyone who's ever had them out has differing tips and horror stories too. At any rate, the HCF Dental Centre in Chatswood was really cool in a futuristic kinda way. I'm used to tiny little rural dental practices. This was like dentistry as practiced with economies of scale. I was directed back into a massive warren of cubicles, each manned with a little Asian dentist and assistant. I drew Dr. Tang, who had an extremely Ocker accent and threatened to beat me over the head with a book if I don't start flossing. I liked him.
After the dentist I had lunch with Rodd's sister Jeannie and his nephew Kurt. (Hey, I guess he's my nephew now too! Odd that I never really thought of that before. I'm an Aunt!) We had a lovely visit. Afterwards I had a long walk from Milson's Point over the Harbour Bridge into the city. What a gorgeous day. I was just walking along, listening to the iPod and having this total Tara D Moment where I just felt so in tune with the universe and in love with the city and so grateful about the state of my life. Oh, and obsessively poking my tongue into the seemingly gigantic holes between my newly-cleaned teeth.
I'm rambling on and on. I'll never get to Monday at this rate! I should go faster. On my way home I saw a car on fire in the middle of George Street. I called the Snook and took pictures with my phone but it never blew up or anything, so eventually I headed back to Chippendale. That night we took Amy and Rob over to Una's for some much-needed bratwurst and beer action. We finished the night watching Samson & Sharkey at the Nag's, where Sharkey was so kind as to dedicate an Elvis song to the Snook and me. Saturday, of course, we pulled up pretty short after all that beer. I just made it to the Knitting Guild meeting that morning. We spent the rest of the day eating zucchini bread and lazing about. I also managed to finish the Snook's Slytherin scarf - in record time! - in preparation for our trip to Hogsmeade. Sunday it was back to work for me, but luckily today was a public holiday so my week is all nicely broken up. (The colonials are all supposed to be celebrating Lizzie's birthday.) I spent the day knitting a new sweater for the Snook while he brewed a beer in honour of the sovereign. As it's a brown ale, I believe he's calling it "Her Majesty Mrs. Brown." Heh.
Saturday, June 11, 2005
Friday, June 10, 2005
Joey Potter would not lie to me like that. She didn't lie to me when she went off on that boat with Pacey, and she didn't lie to me when Dawson's dad died chasing an errant scoop of ice cream, and she wouldn't start now.And what's with Tom Cruise wearing the leather jacket everywhere? He wigs me out.
Wednesday, June 8, 2005
Oh, and #2? She was SO WRONG on that one. My Snookums only has eyes for me. :)
Tuesday, June 7, 2005
Monday, June 6, 2005
Well, guess what? The bastard won! I lost another half kilo exactly! I was in total shock. This goes down in the books as officially the Best Sickness Ever. That brought my total loss to date up to 8.2 kilograms. That's just over eighteen pounds in two months! How insane is that? I don't feel that different. I mean, my pants are looser and my new pink jacket buttons nicely in the front, but I feel like eighteen pounds should be more obvious, you know?
At any rate, I'm back on track with the program now. I managed to talk the Snook into doing the City to Surf with me this year, and it's only ten weeks away. Hopefully I'll be closing in on my goal around then!
Saturday, June 4, 2005
Nat's baby package is nearly ready to go out. On the left is the completed Baby Norgi sweater, which I finished up today. I pretty much followed the pattern exactly for once. The wool is Bambi by Grignasco, which is an extrafine 4-ply 100% Italian merino. (And it's nicer than anything I've ever knit for myself!) My only reservation with this project is the fear that the baby's head won't fit through. Babies have big heads. I tried to make the neckline as loose as possible, but who knows. Nat and Staci might have to save this one for their next kid and hope for a smaller noggin. :)
The second item is a secret one that I finished a couple of weeks ago: the Sirdar Sleeping Bag. Isn't it the cutest thing ever? It even has little teddy bear ears! The cuteness of it almost makes up for the fact that Snowflake Chunky is the worst, most godawful thing in the world to knit. It's as if someone took a nice terrycloth towel and cut it into a long, very fine strip. You can't see any of your stitches amidst all that fleeciness, which kinda defeats the purpose of hand-knitting something in the first place. I mean, if you saw that in a shop, would you think it was hand-knitted? (Slight wonkiness aside?) Nope. So while it's definitely a cute project, I don't think it's quite heirloom quality. At least I know that one will fit though.
Now all I've got to do is give them a final wash to get all the cat hair off...
Friday, June 3, 2005
Thursday, June 2, 2005
Wednesday, June 1, 2005
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