Monday, December 29, 2008
My favorite thing to do is to knit and watch old movies. TCM was celebrating Humphrey Bogart's birthday (Don't we all?) on Dec. 25, and I got to Tivo The Maltese Falcon. FANTASTIC movie, although I don't know if I'd let the kids watch it. I think it's rated PG-13 just for all the smoking.
Anyhoo-- Near the beginning of the film, Spade (Bogart) returns to his room at about four in the morning after visiting the crime scene. I can't remember exactly what he did just then--pour himself a drink, I think. I do remember what he DIDN'T do:
He didn't check his email. Spade didn't update his Facebook status, "Sam is having a rough night." He didn't blog about the clues at the murder scene. He didn't delete his partner's photo off the Spade and Archer web site. He didn't search the bay area Craig's List for a bird statue. He didn't flip on CNN for the day's headlines. He didn't even play a game on his cell phone.
I couldn't get over how quiet his apartment was. Simple. Some pictures of horses. Tidy. Nearest thing to an urban Walden Pond you'd be able to get now days. What would you do if you lived in Sam Spade's apartment? Go nuts from all the clear-headed, uninterrupted thinking? Get lonely, and see what type of, um, phone "service" was available in 40s San Francisco? Get a cat?
Late in the movie, all the main characters are in Spade's apartment overnight (slumber party!). When the final scene begins, Gutman is holding some sort of bulky thing in his lap. (Not a PC!) Watch for it. It might give you some ideas.
Happy to be back blogging, though. Needed a little break. Thanks for the kick in the butt, Kathy.
Thursday, November 27, 2008
I went out to the Winn Dixie one night to get the kids pie, in my jammie-pants. KC and my wife said people do this ALL the time. It isn't like going to a snazzy restaurant in just your underwear, and accidentally running into Christina Aguilera on break from shooting a music video. Er, Christina would probably be wearing just her underwear, too, in that case.
Anyway, I went to the store about 30 minutes before closing wearing a hoodie and my Guinness pajama pants. I walked all over the store looking for a pecan pie, but ended up with just the pumpkin. And, y'know what I saw? There was a guy, about 20 years old, wearing his pajama pants. They were plaid. Not my style, but hey! I was hip! That never happens! I was wearing pajama pants in public! I even added a little strut to my parading around the Winn Dixie.
The next morning, it was about 50 deg. F (10 deg C). We were headed to the beach to clam (another story), but stopped off at the Dunkin Donuts. It was much too cold to be wearing anything as light and comfy as jammie pants. Oh, sure, there was the young woman wearing capris and a halter top. And the two little girls wearing matching tutus. One was bare foot.
Three young ladies (Two barefoot! In a restaraunt! --well, a donut shop) strolled in wearing pajama pants! They must have been around 20 yrs old, looking young, and much too hip for me to be talking to.
*** Here's a tip for all those married men out there. Do NOT point out to your wife how attractive the pretty, young lady's Tinker Bell jammie pants are. How they are light green, with Tinker Bells in various poses, and "Tinker Bell" written on them in fuschia with hearts. And, how well worn they look. Your wife will tell you she knows what you're REALLY looking at, and finish your damn coffee. ***
I got to thinking. (WAIT! Stick with me! I wasn't thinking that hard!) What if my wearing pajama pants in public is NOT hip (or cool, or sick, or damaged, or whatever the kids are saying), but just an old fart dressing too young? A cisvestite (That's a word, right? I saw it in a book.).
So, I won't be doing the pajama pants in public again. Unless someone out there needs a pie some night. That's right. Mild-mannered Tinkguy is really Pieman! Delivering pies to all good citizens, wearing his pajamas! Who wants pie?
Sunday, November 16, 2008
The mind is a tool. (I've been told I'm a tool, but I digress. My mind is like that.)
A tool. That's it. It is not the seat of a soul, nor the unruly monkey trying to guide me to an early grave. It's like a snazzy calculator. And, it's programmable! Sure, thoughts are the product of mind. How the thought comes to me, and disappears is the mystery. Like a wave.
Say I'm looking at a kitten, or a flower, or the way you look tonight, and I notice I have this thought, "Gosh, it/you are easy on my eyes." The kitten, flower, nor you put that thought in my head. Nor the next one that follows: "That kitten/flower/you would look great in my living room." And, guaranteed there are more thoughts that follow. How I'd get it/you there, what to feed it/you. Cats are good, flowers are best, all else is bad.--
I thought these thoughts were correct, just because I thought them! THAT'S crazy! And, maybe they will loop over and over. In a rut. Some thoughts that many, many people have, like: "I'm shy," "I suck at business," or "You look really great tonight." (Well, that last one IS right. You do look awesome tonight. Is that a new shirt?)
It's my senses taking in info, putting them in my mind-tool which makes snap-judgments of raw data at 1/16th of a second, THEN playing them, or replaying them. What if I could just think and stop the auto snap-judging!?! Take thoughts as only raw data? Like a bubble blown by a child floating through my mind.
I like it best when my mind is OFF! Crazy, I know. But, when I drew, all I did was draw. My brain wasn't chattering away about housework, politics, or the way you look tonight. (Seriously. You should be in movies, or selling me something.) I knew a musician who said the same thing happened when he played. The thoughts stopped. It's happened when I beat on my little drum player. (I don't care that I suck at drums. But, that's not my point.) And, every now and then, when the house is quiet, and I've got the pattern down-- knitting. Sometimes, doing the dishes. Scrubbing the floor. Walking for awhile by myself. And, just sitting.
It's not the thoughts that are good or bad. They are just thoughts. And, I'm just sick of having them all the time. I gotta go knit.
I reckon I've bored you enough. So, what do you think?
Saturday, November 15, 2008
I had brought my binoculars. I don't use them much any more. Star gazing, sometimes. Tonight, it was more cloudy than starry. Nothing really to point the binoculars at. There was a small, greenwhite pin-light near the ocean's horizon, about 5 degrees north of east. Through the binoculars I can see subtle shades of black of the fishing ship's shape.
There was a tanker. It was underway without lights. Creeping blacked-out city on waves. Safe passage through the Gulf. Socolddamnwind. Balls to 8 watch again. So tired. No stars. Socolddamnwind. Glow. Off starboard now. Water ablaze. Tanker. Thrashing souls. Screams in my head. So, so damn #$%&ing cold. Damn wind.
"Daddy, can I see?" my boy says, tugging at my pants. T minus 2 minutes and counting.
"Huh? Um, there's nothing to see out there. But, sure." I put the binocular strap over his head. "Y'know, your dad used to do this for a living."
A hoodie would have been nice.
Monday, November 10, 2008
The Fed. Gov't should license Obama! Take Obama's name, his head, his logo, and put it on EVERYTHING! Official Obama merchandise!
Wake up to a bowl of Obama-O's! Fortified with vitamins, minerals and hope! Don't think you can eat a whole bowl? Yes you can! And, each box has a free Obama bobblehead inside!
Obama T-shirts, tote-bags, towels. Obama coffee mugs, coin sets, and collector plates. Obama sun screens for cars. Obama teething rings for babies. Obama temporary tattoos for the tweens!
Obama's family sauerkraut recipe. Obama soap-on-a-rope. Obama pajamas!
And, not only does the Fed take the profits and put it toward the national debt, but all this stuff could be American made!
Save the US Auto Industry! Just put Obama's face on the hood of all the models that won't sell!
Obama (TM) is just the thing to get the American economy moving again! Heck-by-golly-gee-willikers! I'm betting all these goods will sell fast over seas! His international appeal is phenomenal! He might even be bigger than John Lennon! Imagine there is no more trade deficit!
Man, I've got to get a message off to Senator Bill Nelson. This could pay for two crappy wars, a bail-out of a corrupt banking system, and two skeins of sock yarn for every man, woman and child in the world! Maybe even some U.S. healthcare thrown in!
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Friday, November 7, 2008
Then, my wife and boy slipped off the bench, and they just disappeared into the crowd. I couldn't do anything to stop them! When I looked to my other side, I realized I was sitting next to (*gasp*) a lesbian! I had heard rumors back then gays and lesbians could destroy families like that. I had no idea it would happen so abruptly. Fortunately, I was able to shoo away the vile lesbian with the pocket New Testament I keep handy for just such emergencies.
OH, COME ON!!
Florida passed Amendment 2: The Marriage Protection Amendment that states a marriage is between one man and one woman. California passed Proposition 8 saying the same thing.
Love is love is love. "It's the only thing there's just too little of." So, stop trying to stop it. Love is like spring, a hurricane, or, um, a god(dess). Why all the hate, Califlornida? And twenty-some-odd other miserable states.
Someone told me that homosexuals won't get into heaven. Well, who died and made you king/queen of heaven? It's not for YOU to judge, if I recall. Maybe some gays and lesbians (and me) don't want to go to your heaven anyhow. The music probably sucks. I hear Peng-lai is quite nice. And, we're not in heaven, folks, but in the land of the free.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
I like the toy commercials for another reason. I like watching the hands that make the super hero action figures fly. The hands that make Barbie dance. I like the doll commercials best, because the hands make Barbie's head cock just a little to make Barbie look like she's listening, or twist slightly to show off her glittery salon quality tresses. What tiny, subtle movements are barely added to the shot to make the doll seem alive.
And, sometimes these hands don't belong to the kids you think are playing with the toys. Sometimes you can barely see them.
I imagine the hands walking into an audition, and the director telling the hands to give their best walk, and the hand saying they can play younger. May be the producer asks if the hands are comfortable with full bare-knuckle shots.
Well, have you thought this: Maybe you didn't misplace it! Maybe the "lost" thing was NOT sitting where you thought it was all along. Maybe it was borrowed. Borrowed by the fay.
Oh, go ahead. Laugh it up. Leave your comments below that I'm nuts.
But, it happens ALL the time to me. The item the fairies have been borrowing quite a bit lately is my pen knife. I keep it in my left front pants pocket-- when it's not being borrowed. It is usually returned to my pants pocket a day or so later. Just this past Saturday I found it in my knitting bag after about four days missing. The knitter sitting next to me wondered why I was giggling, but I didn't tell her.
And, now my pen knife's gone missing again. And, I don't mind. I just smile, and know the pixies are about. Some night, though, I'll be lucky enough to spot them borrowing. You let me know if you catch one, won't you?
Sunday, November 2, 2008
Obama's logo reminds me of a ball of yarn:
And, McCain's logo looks like two knitting needles and a stitch marker!
Which is more important to my knitting? Yarn or needles? AAAUGH! Politics is so polarized, so brain-numbingly complicated. I can't imagine what voting in America would be like if we had more than two political parties.
Wait. What's that? Nader? Keyes? You mean there are THREE socialist candidates (Gloria LaRiva, Brian Moore, and Roger Colero)? Ted Weill from the Reform Party? Shoot, I remember the Reform Party from way back. And, there are scores more!?!
You mean I can vote for Joe the Candidate?
Why hasn't the media told me about these folks? (Though, I DID see Nader debate a parrot.) But, seriously, I don't know where they stand on the issues knitters hold near-and-dear to their hearts. Where do they stand on left-leaning increases? Artificial fibers? Can we get our country off its addiction to foreign-spun yarns? Circular or DPNs? Is there a League of Knitting Voters I could ask for a pamphlet?
I am going to the voting booth wearing a blindfold. This is not going to be pretty.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
"Soooo. Pink and purple, eh?" W. says to me. He nods at me, and gives a little smirk.
"Excuse me?" I ask.
"Your lanyards. They're pink and purple." Smirk.
"Sure. Pink. Purple. They're for all the Tink pins." And later, after 10 hours around my neck, they will be HEAVY.
"Hmm-mm." He smirked even more. Didn't his mom tell him his face could freeze that way? "Are you holding them pins for someone?"
"Nope. These are all mine. I've got more back in the hotel."
"Hmm-mm." Still smirking.
"She's my favorite character." But, being a Disney cop, he already knew that. It's the first thing they train you to do at Disney Police Academy: to discover a person's favorite Disney character just by reading their body language, eye movements, and t-shirts.
"Hmm-mm." he said smirkishly.
"I finally got to meet her after all these years! A couple hours ago."
"Hmm-mm." he said smirkably.
Maybe I should have changed the subject to my sock knitting. THAT would have wiped the smirk off his face.
Have I mention I am totally bonkers for Tinker Bell? Kinda hard to pick that up about me.
It wasn't advertised. You wouldn't have been able to see it on the Disney World daily schedule when you got to the park. No signs pointing the way. Just a simple "Disney Characters" sign outside. My wife had gotten an email mentioning very little about it.
We ended up being about the 7th family in line, waited quite a bit, BUT IT WAS TOTALLY WORTH IT.
Disney shrunk all of us down and we went into Pixie Hollow. Here I am FINALLY standing next to my very favorite Disney character of all time!
Tink made me feel as young as this little guy next to his favorite fairy, Rosetta:
Later in the day, after word got out, we heard it was about a 4-hour wait to see Tink and her friends.
Say, did you happen to see all the "Lost Things," as the fairies call them, around my neck. Everyone of them is a Tink pin. I was the envy of more than one teen-aged girl. Oh, and I was NOT the only dad out there who liked Tink the best! I met another standing in line for ice cream.
And, yes, we watched the new Tinker Bell movie tonight! I'm still trying to work out the movie's theme. If you've seen it, maybe you can help me. Is it 1) Stick with what you're good at, don't bother trying anything new, or 2) Pulling an all-nighter will make-up for months of work down the tubes. Maybe I should watch it again.
Monday, October 20, 2008
"I have no idea."
"Maybe she just wants to look more cooler."
A six-year-old girl playing Pictionary with her Minnesotan family (friends of us, down here in Florida) had to draw the word "knitting." She drew me.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
She was hilarious. She was poignant. Piquant? Hmmm. I need thesaurus.com. Heck, I need to do some sit-ups (see above).
Anyway, I didn't have anything on my needles to knit for the shindig (seemed a knitting-sin not to), so I grabbed some Cascade 220 Superwash, and some straight number 3s. After I ripped-out the few rows I did at lunch, I started again on my cables. I made a flipping mess, but I learned:
1) I should have drew my very own cable pattern out using pattern symbols on paper first,
2) it sucked when I forced myself to make a cable where 1/2 my brain said it should be, and
3) I had more fun just playing with my impromptu knit/purl pattern.
Which is when I finally got over with my little satori and set my needles down.
Stephanie Pearl-McPhee is a fantastic public speaker, in addition to being an author and knitter. She had me laughing so hard, I almost had an asthma attack. Informative, enlightening, and empowering. (So what if my wife doesn't quite understand why I keep knitting socks?)
And, I didn't know Toronto worshiped skunks! Geez, all the homeowners (i.e., Mr. & Mrs. Pearl-McPhee) have to go through to get rid of a skunk in Toronto! It makes you wonder if Toronto has a skunk temple like the famous rat temple in India. Y'know there'll come a day when Toronto will have to kill the skunks, or the humans will have to flee the city like some sci-fi B movie.
Anyway, buy her book. Read it. Laugh. And, knit something!
Saturday, October 18, 2008
1. I'm a social misfit.
I got to spend some time with some really cool people. And, I met a very nice young lady, S. S mentioned she had this fear (I'm not going to mention it.) But, I think I reacted like I thought she was insane. AH! No, no, no! In fact, I wanted to compare seemingly irrational fears. So, S, if you're out there, this post is for you.
2. Every headache I get surely means I'm about to have a cerebral aneurysm.
Then, if I manage to get the headache to go away with acupressure, caffeine, or pills, I remember:
3. I know I'll die by getting hit by a bus.
So, I look both ways, usually twice, before crossing the street. I hate to jaywalk or cross against the lights.
4. I'm a major goopaphobe.
Coined by my wife, as a goopaphobe I don't like sticky fingers, my boy to wipe his nose on my arm, or guacamole on my elbow. I used to get a peeved face. I just stop what I'm doing and reach for the paper towels. Now, that doesn't mean I don't like my wife's guacamole, or my boy's nose. I'll weed the garden, or unplug a drain, but I'll de-goop as soon as I can.
5. I don't like to eat in front of strangers.
Geez. All sorts of neurosis there. I have trouble eating at buffets, 'cause I feel like all the humans (including me) are at the feed station of some barn, and all the eating and grunting noises are magnified in my head, seeing all the people hunched over, shoveling all-they-can-eat deep-fried everything into their maws, fattening up for the county fair...
...and, that's how I feel when I eat in front of strangers. I mean, which one is the nacho fork? Do I chug my Guinness too fast? What if a string of cheese gets caught in my goatee and no one tells me? What if I absent-mindedly wipe my goopy hands on my pants? My neighbor's skirt? Did I just talk with my mouth full? Laugh with my mouth full? I my mouth ever NOT full? I feel like a pig when eating in front of strangers. Which, of course, leads back to:
1. I'm a social misfit.
I don't know the polite topics, I cannot talk about football, and I feel dorky when I mention the weather we're having. I can't segue between topics without feeling I ran over a speed bump. If I say anything, I'm sure I offended someone. I feel like I'm leering when I smile, and when I look people in the eye, I feel like I see pieces of their souls, so I try hard not to stare, so I lower my eyes, which can be a problem if you're a guy talking to a lady, then I worry I look gawky and desperate -- for absolutely no reason-- and maybe I should just stay home and knit. I don't know how to say good-bye. And, when this all floods my brain...
6. I chant.
I chant, "I love my wife I love my wife I love my wife," under my breath. Now, true, I DO love my wife. That's not why I chant it. The reason I chant it is because I feel like I've done something incredibly dumb, and crude. I know no matter how stupid the incident, yet, incredibly, my wife still loves me. And, that's why I chant it.
So, S, see? I don't think you're crazy at all. Just crazy enough.
HEY! Hockey's on. Gotta motor.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Why not vote for a candidate that DOES have a magic wand?
VOTE TINK 2008!
Even Tink's campaign slogan captures the hearts and souls of both sides of the aisle:
Faith (Conservative Right-wing tells us is needed), Trust (Liberal Left-wing tells us is needed), and Pixie Dust (what we are telling ourselves is needed).
Yep! Lost your house through foreclosure? Got laid-off? Can't get a student loan? Family torn apart by a stagnate, unpopular war? Well, there's really nothing to it! All you need is a little faith, and trust. And... Oh, yeah, I almost forgot. A little pinch of Pixie Dust!
Get out there and vote! Make it count! It's time for a real change! Send a message to Washington! Vote Tink!
Sunday, October 12, 2008
My friend K.C. and her daughter took us downtown to the Jacksonville Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA). And, I had a freaking blast!
There were these ultra realistic resin cast sculptures of humans by Marc Sijan. Very cool. The guy knows how to paint skin tone. Though, I don't recall any but caucasian sculptures in this installation. Seriously, some pretty awesome work. The detail in the ballerina's toes with calluses. The slightly sun burnt skin of the overweight bald man in swim trunks (Standing Man). I loved the one called Hands on Shoulder (though the figure had one hand on her foot. Must be a zen thing. Or, a misprinted tag.) It was almost a classical or yoga pose, and I was trying to figure which muscle groups were flexed, and which were relaxed, and if the sculpture really reflected that. It was a pensive pose, yet so relaxed and inviting. I mean you have to really look closely to find any thing off about the sculptures.
KC took the kids, and let me wander through. I had finished studying the full figure of the big guy in swim trunks, when a family passed me toward him. I stood at the balerina and listened to the family mock his appearance, and the dad pulled out a slim, red camera. He took two steps back, and snapped the big guy's photo. At the count of two, a security guard swooped out from no where, and marched straight to the dad saying, "I thought I told you to stop taking pictures!" Whoa! He had to delete the pix, or get his camera confiscated.
I went up to the fifth floor to meet KC and the kids. They were making sculptures out of aluminum wire and Model Magic. Her kid made hearts, mine made two alien heads, and a loop-de-loop. I made a few different noses. I like noses.
Then we had lunch at the library next door, went to the library where I didn't find the book that I was looking for, but found two others. My boy got a kids book on Neil Armstrong.
Fabulous time. I want to get some Crayola Model Magic and spend next weekend making noses.
Next Saturday is Art in the Parks! Downtown. I hope I've got nothing else planned.
Thursday, October 9, 2008
My wife's first issue of Playboy should be arriving soon, too.
Hmm. There seems to be a crossed wire somewhere.
Magazines sitting on my toilet tank right now:
Vogue Knitting, Fall 2007
Disney Files, Fall 2008
and a DK book: Watch Me Grow: Panda
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Look at the cute skull I drew! It'd make a terrific temporary tattoo for my boy.
Best work all day.
Sunday, October 5, 2008
I've liked this one with the visible gray dots that aren't really there. I stared at these for hours as a kid.
Here's a whole page of them.
But the best optical illusions were the ones I could tell were screwing with my brain, not just the various weaknesses of the human eye.
Droodles. They've been around a very long time. I've since lost my copies of the little books. I used to carry them to school, study them during lunch, make up my own answers. I'll be getting the new copies very soon and showing them to my kid.
My favorite ones were the ones with multiple answers. My favorite (Watch your brain, now.) :
I think the official caption is:
Or, A Tennis Racket Needing to be Restrung.
Oh, and A Hairbrush for a Bald Man.
And, then turn it this way:
Hmmm. This is turning a little dark. Maybe I can make a little adjustment:
Anyway, time for the point.
I love the trick the Droodles play on my brain. It all happens in my brain!
How well do you know the people you meet? Isn't there just the finest of fine lines between what is an aquaintance, and what is a friend? How much time? How many hugs? Is "A stranger just a friend you haven't met"? Where is the line YOU draw between friend and enemy? Does it switch back from enemy to friend? How much of it is in your head?
What if, just, what if you could look at people like they were a Droodle? Let go of who they are in your head, and watch it change in your head moment by moment.
Get back to me on this, will you?
Thursday, October 2, 2008
What is a good little consumer to do?
Shop away your troubles!
How about hitting a mall, getting some new clothes, new hair, a tan, bleached teeth, new contacts, then hitting a dance club, down a few brewskis, build another chair, design a shirt, then hit a coffee shop and chat up some neo-luddite philosophy with some folks dressed as merpeople before working on your nose job, all FREE-- then click off your computer, and go to bed feeling like you partied like you were 21 again-- only there was something missing. Like, an honest heartbeat.
That's SecondLife.com. It's fun! It feels real enough! and instead of buyer's remorse, I get the "I'll never get that 8-hours of my life back" feeling. Of course, to solve THAT wasted feeling, just log back on to Second Life, and surf a big virtual wave on Weather Island. Heck, there's even a knit club there-- which leads me to:
To all my knitter friends out there, I look very much forward to seeing y'all every week, and making something tangible.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Monday, September 8, 2008
Until Sunday. I found a piece of mens wear that REALLY made me want to stop knitting socks and start putting together a sweater design. Can you spot it between all the fairies?
Sunday, September 7, 2008
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Yep, I just got back from Disney World, and I finally found Mallie's Psychic Outfitters and Fiber Arts Supply!
She had some of the most gorgeous fibers made from unexpected sources! Cattail, Frog Gut, and even some imported gold-spun lace weight, hand spun by Roger Schnitzelheim. No, that wasn't it. Russel Stiltonsong. Rummy Schlitzkein? How come I can't remember his name?
Anyway, I just HAD to pick up a few skeins of her latest shimmering blend. It's simply magical. Hand spun, of course, from the silk of spiders by the light of the full moon. Using her secret patented dying process, Mallie's made a fiber only the keenest eye of one highly skilled in the fiber arts can even see! Fantastic!
Check out this sock weight Nadazilchnil:
Definitely enough yarn here to make me a pair of flippin' knee-high cable socks if I want. Of course, I'd be looking aweful silly in Nadazilchnil knee-high socks, but you get my drift. 1600 yards! And light as a feather! Definitely the yarn to use for hot Florida summers!
Here I swatched a little bit of the Deaton pattern. Dangnabbit, I tell you, the pictures do NOT do it justice! The way this Nadazilchnil knits up to a fine drape-- it's almost evil!
I just want to leap into it and take a nap! A really loooooong nap.
I blew my whole yarn budget on Mallie's Nadazilchnil, but it was worth it!
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Here's the schtick. I got to thinking. (Yeah, I hate it, too.) Thinking and driving. I thought about people I've met this past eight/nine months or so, and I got to thinking about extremes, and it just smashed into me-- like my mind just flew through a windshield:
I have met many perfect people. Now, I'm not saying they all have a nice butt, and great chest, and a cute smile (not everyone can be Mike Rowe). I'm not even paying much attention to that, and that's no where near where I'm headed.
The people I know are perfect just the way they are! I wouldn't even dream of changing a thing even if I could! I'm surrounded by perfect people! They have their funny quirks, and buttons to be pushed, and every single one of them has a great laugh. They eat different stuff, and sleep differently, and all have different accents, and it's all too beautiful! They even make different mistakes, and handle them in different ways, just perfectly! Just the flipping way they should be handled by each individual! It's not like they should be called mistakes at all, but little tangents, or diversions, or artistic expression. Some even frustrate the crap out of me! They do it with such a perfect je ne sais quoi!
Except, I'm not quite sure these people realize they're perfect. So, if you have ever met me, realize that you are perfect.
There. That should do it.
That whole "Nobody's perfect" saying? Hogwash. EVERYBODY'S PERFECT!
Now, here's what blew my mind even more! (And, while trying to drive!) What happens when two perfect people don't seem to connect? When there's friction? You'd think perfect people would get along. Perhaps, it's like they are magnets, both showing each other their asses! therefore repelling each other! Hmmm. Butting heads? Maybe they don't realize they're perfect? Maybe they think only themself perfect, but not the other person? Hmmm. Luckily I need to sleep, or I'd be thinking for eight more pages.
Geez! Thinking confuses me. I've got to trade-in this cracked brain for something a little more slick. In fact, I just got some sort of spam about enlarging my something or 'nother. Let me see if I can find that email... Maybe I can make a swap.
And, yes, I already have the perfect wife.
"Daddy. What do sand dollars eat?"
"Um, I dunno. Loose change?"
Why doesn't he ask me something I know, like Emily Gilmore's code to her panic room.
Did you know a jiffy is 1/100th of a second? Keep that little nugget tucked away in case you meet my boy.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Me, a day or so ago--
So, this is what it looks like at about 9 am heading north on 9A in ~25 - 35 mph winds with 55 mph gusts. The road gleams gray as the dusky sky. Can't hardly tell them apart. There's not much traffic. Everyone is home watching 24hr weather or Sponge Bob-- if they have power. Rain blasts into the windshield. Wind howls forever like it's got no one to love. The car slides left from a gust. I tug at the wheel to keep my car in some sort of lane. How close are those tail lights ahead, smeared with rain?
And, then the perfect song to drive through a tropical storm by comes on my iPod. "Your Ass," by Hydraulic Woman. You'd think any song would do when driving through severe tropical weather, but, nope. It was definitely NOT a Wham!, "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" kind of storm. No snow, no "Sleigh Ride." If I had been doing some more hydroplaning, then maybe some Beach Boys.
But, really, "Your Ass" really made the whole moment. Made me glad I'm driving through a tropical storm, and enjoying the gray, the whining wind, and swissshquish of my wipers, easing up on the gas at my exit, glad I didn't have to take a bridge, and just being alive. It sort of woke me up to the whole perfect moment. And, I smiled at Fay.
Oh, this is a pic of what I get for dinking with the iPod when I should be driving.
Naw. Just kidding. I made it home safe. Hope y'all are safe and dry, too.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Not so much after some all-night drinking binge, but if it happened that way, so be it. "Whatever gets you through the night. It's alright." J. Lennon
And, when realizing you don't know who you are, you start to feel the pieces sliding into place in your self-being-consciousness-- like your vertebrae adjusting one-by-one as you slooooowly stand upright from touching your toes (or, in my case, aiming my fingers at my toes). Name-click. Occupation-click. Do I own pants?-click
Have you ever sat very quietly and dumped your identity? Then, realize you're closer to who you are than when you were keeping track of who you are?
I want to know. I know this makes sense to someone out there.
Sunday, August 17, 2008
I loved watching the magic shows on TV. Like the magician who could turn his lovely assistant into a tiger, then back again. I tried that on my sister. I kept saying the magic words over and over again, but she never got the hang of turning into a tiger. She never disappeared, neither.
Then, I got into advertising. Talk about illusion! Everybody is worried about their product and the image it portrays! What color label most appeals to their target audience of females 17-35. Having to choose the right font for a church to make it seem hip, but not too hip to exclude families.
It's like the kids in high school who need to wear the right jeans, comb their hair the right way, not wear certain colors. Is there ANYTHING a kid won't buy with the word Holister on it? Shoot, way back in my middle school days, you needed to have the right brand of a thick tube of candy-flavored lip gloss hanging around your neck by a cord, and the huge handle of a plastic comb hanging out your back pocket. Or, frankly, you were not cool.
We caught on, though. It's all an illusion.
Like a movie. There's some magic makers there. I swear I want to get a time-share on the planet Naboo. And, how long before you went back in the water after seeing Jaws? Ever shudder taking a shower the morning after seeing Psycho?
One of my favorite directors is Zhang Yimou. He directed Raise the Red Lantern and To Live, both with my favorite actress Gong Li. I could feel the torture of the Cultural Revolution in To Live, and I really want someone to tap my feet with little hammers, like in Raise the Red Lantern.
He also directed the absolutely magical 2008 Beijing Olympic Opening Ceremonies. 2008 drummers perfectly synchronized. Master calligraphers. Dancers. Singers. Joggers all over a globe. Fireworks. Some bizarre movable type board, that moved up and down in letter forms, and water-like drips, and-- there were people underneath each separate character-piece. There was thousands of years of Chinese culture displayed for the world. The Olympic opening ceremonies were the chance for the Chinese to put their best smiling face forward, and say, "Welcome to our home, world!" And, they chose a fantastic film maker to put together their image.
And, for some folks, the illusion was ruined because one little girl sang so beautifully, and another little girl mouthed the words.
Really? You want to pick on that? Miss I-Really-DO-Look-Like-My-Facebook-Photo-All-The-Time? Or, are you really a Mr? You can't find any other itsy-bitsy Chinese elephants in the room to pick on, but a prepubescent lip syncher? That really blew it all for you, Mr. I-Buy-Only-Family-Oriented-Under-Arm-Deordorants? That whole bit where the children dressed as the 56 minorities in China soft-shoeing the Chinese flag up to the soldiers who take it from them wasn't disturbing? I'll bet the 2008 drummers all synched up was looking a bit intimidating to Taiwan-- er, I mean, Chinese Taipei, or to the not-so-autonomous region of Tibet.
Really? Lip synching? The whole illusion is blown, and China sucks because the actual singer didn't look the image someone wanted to portray? Did you watch the rest of the ceremony? (Say, did you know Zhang Yimou was banned from China? And, now he is a welcome celebrity?) The show was AWESOME! It almost made me forget about the city-wide pre-Olympic political dissident round-up.
So, I woke up this morning to a wrestling match with my boy. (He's getting better. Nearly had one of my arms pinned down.) When I got around to saying good morning to my honey, she was working on her computer. "Blogging?" I asked.
"No," she said. "I'm making you a MySpace page."
I smiled a very big smile. I've got a groupie! who makes a MySpace page for me, like a politician, or an actress, or a tattoo artist. Wait-- You didn't think those MySpace pages were the REAL politician/actress/tattoo artists, did you?
Oh, btw. Way back when, remember the Taco Bell chihuahua? That wasn't the dog's real voice.
Actually, my wife made me the MySpace page so I could access and read HER MySpace blog.
"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful what we pretend to be."
--Kurt Vonnegut, Mother Night
Monday, August 4, 2008
So, I was crocheting at the zoo this weekend. My family and friends were petting stingrays. Sure enough, a woman began chatting with me. A friendly women from Charleston. She beads. Loves Italian food. Her husband took their kid in to see the stingrays. The woman was afraid of them.
Then, a little bit later, another woman had to ask what I was crocheting. It is a gauge swatch. I'd only been crocheting it for about 9 collective hours. I just started crocheting, and I just can't seem to keep the same number of stitches going after a row. Her mother is English, and forgot how to knit so couldn't teach her. So sad. I recommended a book.
FYI: I can crochet and walk as fast as two women corralling five young'uns through the zoo.
ANYHOO-- If you've ever knit in public, you know people just start coming up to you and chatting with you. Maybe it's the comfort of the yarn, or the creative process just out there in the open-- I dunno, but here's the thing.
Women have asked me how to find a man. Not very often, but they've asked. I don't know why they want one. They smell funny.
But, since I've been knitting, a stereotypically female activity, I've met some really nice people! Many of them women! Just sitting down, in public, and knitting! And, I didn't really want to meet anyone, but I'm glad I did! Knitters are awesome people!
So, women who want to meet men: Here's what you ought to try. Pick up a hobby that is stereotypically male! Say, hunting! There you go! Just stand outside the Range of the Jaguar exhibit at the zoo with a rifle, and I'll bet you'll be meeting guys in no time!
Sunday, August 3, 2008
So we all went to the beach!
My very favorite thing to do on the beach is to hunt seashells. I found this one (above) today within 90 seconds of dropping the cooler on the sand. I see all the shells, bits of color and light, dancing glints. And it's all so beautiful, and it's like seeing a crowd of people, how each one is beautiful and different, and -- sheeesh, what the heck did I put in this Diet Dr. Pepper?
I don't think seashell hunting could get much better.
And, then I go and start thinking again. Dangnabbit.
Which celebrity would I like to go seashell hunting with? I've seen people blog celebrities they'd like to have a dinner party with, slumber party, and (duh) do "it" with, but I'm lame.
So, I'm going to have to go with Lorelei Gilmore. Ok, sure, she's fictional, but it is my fantasy, right? Why Lorelei? She's quick witted, and I'd love to just chit-chat while hunting seashells...
"So, you're Eric?"
"Yep. Call me Tinkguy. No one else does. Have any trouble finding the beach?"
"Not really. Just turned east and kept driving until I found it."
"I thought you might recognize these daisy-dukes from episode two."
"Capris were in the laundry? The DragonflyInn.org shirt- Very chic."
"Thanks. It's Paul Anka's. He wears all my old stuff and then I steal it back. Shall we hunt seashells?"
"Oh, yeah, sure." I hand Lorelei her bucket.
"So, how do you hunt seashells? Do we need to put up a shell blind? Is there a shell call I need to learn? Here, Shelley, Shelley, Shelley? Here Percy Bysshe Shelley!"
"That sounded funnier in your head, right?"
"Say, here's a shell! Got one! Well, that's it. I had a swell time. We should do this again."
"Maybe in the next 10 seconds?"
"Ooo! I found another! Wow, I'm really good at this!"
"Bamm! In your face! I've bagged a half-dozen keepers, and you're just standing there like the beach's door greeter."
"Maybe we could walk a little ways?"
"Walk and hunt? At the same time? Do you think I'm ready?"
"Hmm. You might accidentally step on my foot."
"Not very Cheney-esque."
"I could accidentally throw a jellyfish at your face."
"Say, there's an orange flag over that lifeguard."
"It means the terror threat level is high."
"So, one of these plovers could be terrorist?"
"Just the ones on the Do Not Fly List. And that crab over there is looking shifty. I don't know him." I point to it as it ducks into a hole.
"Species profiling. It had to happen. Next, you'll be telling me I shouldn't be caught dead in the water with a shark."
So, what's your lamest celeb fantasy?
Hmmm. Celebrity I'd most like to knit socks for...
Maybe, just like that TV show, Man Vs. Wild, I could parachute into, say, Shanghai, and HAVE to use it to get around! Like, total life-or-death cultural immersion! I'd definitely have to learn more than just Ni hao! 什么是这炒饭成份？
Then, I got to thinking...
Kids. They are totally life-or-death culturally immersed in Earth.
Then, I kept thinking...
Do kids get angry? Do they get frustrated? How do they express it? Are they even "ALLOWED" to express it? Are they allowed to even experience anger and frustration, even with their parent/guardian?
And, still I kept thinking... (Dangerous pasttime, I know. (Disney fans?))
What if a kid is told, when angry, "No hitting."
And, "No screaming."
And, "Don't take that tone."
And, "You are NOT to use that word."
Ok, what is a kid to do? Is the five-year-old to simply tell his/her daddy, "Excusez-moi, mon père. Your not-so subtle suggestion I consume the buttered brussel sprouts placed in front of me frustrates me beyond wits end. I've found brussel sprouts spur my gag reflex, making them very unappealing, and hard to swallow. I would rather be politely excused from eating this serving and retire to my chamber for the rest of the evening."
#$%@ that a-hole driver just @#$%ing cut me the h$#% off! What a #$^%ing &@#%er! And she's %#^%ing talking on her #%^@ing cell phone.
There are extremes, of course.
When could a child begin to control their emotions? To the point of bottling them up to calmly express in words his or her frustration with the current situation? Why not simply say, "Crap!" Then, perhaps ask for assistance if desired?
Or, should they bottle up the anger until the day, months or years from now, when they can lock themselves in their room and tear the books from their shelves, and rend their bed linens...
Hit? Or say, "Crap, moron, idiot, stupid, damn?" I'm not saying kids should have free reign of the available vocabulary. BUT, should a parent blame the environment, the culture for warping the child? And, then attempt to wall-in the child from the "outside" world? (Or, is it just a world the parents find hard to swallow?)
Does anyone out there know how Siddhartha Gautama spent his princely childhood walled in his father's palace? The kid's got to get out there some day, and will s/he be prepared? Or, stunned?
Would it not be kind and understanding for the adult to NOT jump on the child with, "DON'T SAY THAT!" and instead probe the child's current situation BEYOND the words, and help the kid understand the nature of frustration and anger?
How old does a parent have to be to do that? What if the parent doesn't understand the nature of frustration and anger!?!
My wife, while a driver nearly hit her in a left turn, said, "@#$@!"
My boy said, "Can I say that?"
I really don't like to think that much. It's tiring. Where the heck did I drop my sock knitting...
Any thoughts? Be honest, now. It's just thinking.
Friday, August 1, 2008
Just like everyone you ask will say they have a good sense of humor, everyone will tell you they listen to a variety of music.
I've listened to Mariah Carey's Daydream at work for four hours straight today. Then, Christina Aguilera's Stripped for four hours. I've listened to The Corrs' Dreams in the car for over six months. Nothing but that CD.
I've got this iPod playlist I play when I need to work, and just can't get moving. It's got 54 songs in it now. From Girl From Ipanema to Prince's Sexy M.F. I add a couple new ones now and then. This playlist can make me breeze through a load of dishes, or two hours of house cleaning. (I watch old movies when folding laundry.)
Now, there IS some music I can't work to. It's not that I don't LIKE the music. I just can't listen to it AND work.
Like classical music. When classical music is on, I find that I've stopped working, and I'm just gazing off into nothing, listening.
Or, country music. When country music is on, I find I've stopped working, and I'm just crying and wishing I was drunk.
Anyway, at work yesterday, I found I can't work to Ray Charles. I LOVE Ray Charles since I don't know when. But, it was a sad moment when I popped the CD out of my work computer, and told Ray I won't be listening to him any more at work.
So, greater Earth-area, what music gets you working? Does it matter what the work is? Do you listen to Sinatra for yard work, The Kinks when dusting, and Patsy Cline when cleaning up from last night's lingerie party?
Sunday, July 13, 2008
I had a great time at a ball game! It was a minor league game between the Jacksonville Suns and the Mississippi Braves. The boy had a great time, too. He sang the team jingle today.
My friend, Kathy and her daughter got my family tickets and we all sat just off of third base. It's a seat where you HAVE to watch the game, or you could get beaned by a foul ball! Great weather that night, 80 deg F with a light breeze.
And, we stayed for all nine innings, PLUS the double header 7 inning game! And, Ellen got me peanuts, and Kathy gave me her Cracker Jack, and the boy found a Star Wars pinball machine behind the concessions store. What a great night!
Jimmy Buffet night is coming up! I doubt he'll be singing or pitching. Maybe there will be free margarita's?
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Well, it kinda goes without saying, but it's nice to hear it every once in awhile.
I had been looking forward to playing Guitar Hero (Aerosmith version) all day, and I had just got the game turned on, and my nearly-five-year-old was in his little chair, watching the beginning logos flash on.
Just as I start the practice, he sticks out his tongue and asks, "Daddy, is this Life Saver small enough?"
I bent down to look. I couldn't see the thing. Apparently it was green.
So, I started the practice again, and just as I was about to start the first note, the boy stands up, walks toward me, then past me toward his mother.
Sigh. He wasn't breathing. I took off my special Aerosmith guitar, and set it on the couch, and wrapped my arms around him from behind. I hit him with the Heimlich maneuver twice. I was a little low, but I could hear him at least wheezing. I know the story behind the hole in Life Savers candy.
He made it to his mom, and sat and coughed at her until he vomited all over her a couple times.
To make a long story not so long, I got four stars on Love in an Elevator on medium! Way cool.
So, today, I was talking to two mom's at the daycare. They are super moms, and their kids are darn adorable, too. One was telling the other about my boy's choking incident. It turns out, they both said they doubt they'd be able to remember the Heimlich maneuver.
I watched a lot of TV when I was a kid. Every TV series had an episode where someone was choking. I mean, if it wasn't Kris saving Bosley on Charlie's Angels, then it was some kid saving grandpa on CHiPs. Gopher saving Charo on the Love Boat, right before the episode where Charo saves David Boyle on Fantasy Island (fresh from being saved by Kris on Charlie's Angels). I think Shaggy dislodged a Scooby Snack from Scooby-do, smacking the Sloshing Swamp Ghost in the head, knocking it out cold. Hooray for meddling kids who know the Heimlich maneuver.
I think there was some sort of public service campaign. Lots of shows showed it. Then, TV tried it out with CPR. Wasn't there a Designing Women CPR episode after Dixie Carter has a heart attack seeing how they secretly painted her office all black.
Anyway, what's the big public service schtick now? I don't get to watch as many shows now adays. I should ask some kids. I think today is, Recycle.
So, kids, if I'm choking, go throw that water bottle in the recycling bin.
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Thanks to PicnicKnits.com for the suggestion on how to waste some time on Flickr. However, I couldn't get the app to work for me at the end. Dangnabbit. I guess I just didn't want to sign up for more crud on-line.
a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into fd’s mosaic maker.
1. What is your first name? Eric
2. What is your favorite food? Black Eyed Peas
3. What high school did you go to? Ramsey
4. What is your favorite color? Green
5. Who is your celebrity crush? Gong Li
6. Favorite drink? Guinness
7. Dream vacation? Ireland
8. Favorite dessert? Cherry Pie
9. What you want to be when you grow up? me
10. What do you love most in life? Liberty
11. One Word to describe you: Perplexed
12. Your flickr name. Wu K'ung
Monday, June 16, 2008
Sunday, June 8, 2008
Saturday, June 7, 2008
Okay, so can you tell it was my first time on a plane? But, I finally joined the Mile High Knitting Club.
Turns out, I was standing right in front of her books. I picked up the latest (Things I Learned From Knitting (Whether I Wanted To or Not)), and when they made their way to me I held it up and said, "Here's her latest. It's her funniest one so far."
The Borders lady took the book from me and told her customer, "Here's her latest. It's her funniest one so far, evidently."
So, the customer the customer was new to knitting, and asked me if I knit. Her husband asked if people ask me, "Where's the yarn?" Um, no. He was the first to ask me that. And, my knitting was in the car.
Maybe my male knittingness freaked out the newbie knitter, so I wandered off to the graphic novels. She left soon after. Without the book (sorry, Ms. Pearl-McPhee, wherever you are).
Let's see what my local Jim-Bob Community Dance Troop and Oyster Bar is putting on this weekend...
Ooooo. Daniel and Daniella in the Lions Den. Just bippy. They might have Guinness on tap, though.
Friday, June 6, 2008
Since my LYS back home is Knit Witz, I had to snap this pic.
Knit Wits is very well organized, and has a touch of SoHo in its overall feel. The sample sweaters were inspiring, and the owner was very helpful-- but NOT as totally awesome as my LYS owner and employees. And, I did buy a skein of a little something. Maybe I'll get around to knitting up something from it.
I mean, going to Mickey's brings back a lot of memories. I used to live a little over a block from there. And it is always open. The nicest people, and great diner food.
Neighborhood has changed a bit, though.
Thursday, May 29, 2008
I can ladder down and back up pretty quick, and I frog now with just a shrug, after I have smoothly weaved in a lifeline. I shifted over a nearly completed gusset 4 stitches. It was a lot more after I had to ladder down all the decreases! Not too smooth, but I did it.
I make mistakes. That's what makes my knitting charming, right?
And, I've become very, very good at tinking. I can tink back a row at just under purl speed!
Thus, I've become a Tinkguy.
And, I'll bet you thought my moniker had to do with a particular, popular pixie.
Monday, May 26, 2008
Then, I made a New Years Resolution to focus on my knitting.
Now, look at my knitstand, er, nightstand:
A bucket o' yarn. My dpn's, and, Ellen has just informed me, the World's Ugliest Bedside Lamp. (She's looking for a place to put one of her displaced lamps.)
All the books, magazines, sketchbooks that were on there a couple months ago are in the bottom drawer.
And, now lookie here:
My favorite bookcase is getting nooks filled up with yarn. I'll need to find new places for my favorite books. I mean, they are there in case I wake up with heartburn at 3:00 am, and need a little light reading (Jataka Tales anyone?) to entertain me until I can lay down again. Now, I'll be reaching for yarn.
Maybe I can switch the books out with the rest of my stash in the other room.
Does anyone else just want to crawl into their stash and roll around?
Um, I mean, not that I do, no, not me. I was, um, just kidding. Yeah. A joke. Tee-hee-hee.
Sunday, May 25, 2008
On Tuesday, I found a little green spider on my left forearm. I thought about Arachne, the Greek weaving goddess, and then about the four spider sisters in Journey to the West, evil, scary tricksters--
By the time my brain was done musing, the little spider had moved to my right thigh.
Wednesday, I sat under the tree, knitting my sock. About five minutes into it, I realized I had a green spider on the back of my right hand. I started thinking, perhaps the spider was watching my continental technique, and how I purl pretty darn quickly-- not a world contender, by any means-- but maybe it was interested, much like when one knits in public, strangers walk up to watch. Maybe it wanted to give ME some pointers--
Thursday, I went to sit at my usual spot under the tree, and walked through a mass of spider web. Sticky lacework.
I'm sorry. Were you expecting a point to this?
Saturday, May 24, 2008
And, I still don't.
But, I enjoy reading other people's blogs so much, I feel like I'm peeking in on their lives-- it's kinda like they are showing me theirs, without me showing them mine.
Oh, that made a lot of sense.