Monday, September 29, 2008

Media News

I want to start off with some knitting, since I haven't been writing about that for a while.


Accomplished procrastinator that I am, I've managed to put off knitting the sleeves for my Celtic sweater by working on this poncho.

It was originally slated to be a Ravelympics project, but I doubted that I'd finish it. Well, I didn't even start it before the end! So, at this point, I am down into the border around the bottom and nearly finished with the first skein of Lion Brand Homespun. I have two skeins of that, and I expect to probably use all of it. I promise a photo when it's done.

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When I originally moved into where I live now, I got a lot of stuff out of storage that had been there for a while. It got dumped in the bedroom with a promise that I'd unpack it a little at a time. As mentioned earlier, I'm really good at procrastination.

In the middle of October, the management at the apartment place will be inspecting apartments. There were still a lot of boxes in the bedroom when they came through last year and they OKd it, but said that if it was still that way for this year's inspection it would not be OK!

So, I'm trying to make a decent dent in it every day so I don't break my back in a couple of weeks.

The good part of that is that I'm finding clothes I had forgotten I had (just when I need them for Fall and Winter) and things to sell!

One of those things is an Ashford distaff (shown below).



This was intended for an Ashford Traditional Wheel. You can see how it looks on the wheel here. That little block of wood on the left in the photo will fasten to any narrow, flat piece to support the distaff. A few years ago, I saw some small, unfinished stools in the craft stores that had a hole in the middle of the seat that probably would support the distaff just fine.

If you are interested, leave a comment.

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You may have noticed that I'm putting a row of asterisks to separate topics. That way, if you aren't interested in the knitting, you can skip to the science fiction or whatever.

There has been progress made on the cover for the first Steve Canyon DVD (see the Special Edition here) of the series. John and I have been on iChat and the phone and been sending files back and forth, and have been having an exciting time putting together the first cover.

We're down to the nitpicking details at this point.

I mentioned to him how exciting it was, and he said not to exaggerate. I asked how many people he knew that were doing covers for DVDs (excluding us), and he said, "42, excluding Douglas Adams!"

So, now that the front cover is almost done, we have the spine and back cover to do. At least.

I'm excited! 

No matter what he says.

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Well, I don't plan to work late on the cover because there's so much science fiction and other good shows on TV tonight!

The SciFi people, in their wisdom, are showing four more episodes of Lost, in their effort to help me catch up to what's happening. As you know, I missed out on the beginning of the first season, and have been lost ever since as far as the show goes. But it's getting good!

Over on NBC, they are trying to duplicate their Monday science fiction night from last year. The evening starts with the season premier of Chuck. Aside from having Adam Baldwin (whom I love from Firefly), I find I always tend to enjoy SF or spy stories where the science fiction (or spying) is mixed in with healthy doses of everyday reality (like working in a store). Somehow it always makes the SF or spying more real.

We'll be getting to see the third episode of the new season of Heroes right after Chuck!

Then, they'll be showing the season premier of Life, which is not SF, but good. It's about a cop who was convicted of a crime, sent to prison, cleared, and then freed and given an award in the form of a cash settlement that is big enough to live on forever, but he goes back to being a cop because he likes it. Check it out!

Tomorrow, on their daytime rotation, the SciFi Channel will be showing Jake 2.0, one of my favorites.

We won't be getting a new Eureka, though, or any Eureka at all tomorrow evening.

We will be getting The Mentalist (CBS), and Fringe (Fox), though.

Check your TV schedules and have a great beginning-of-the-week!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Steve Canyon Flies Again!

Last night, I got the last of the files from John I'll need to create the cover he designed for the first Steve Canyon DVD of the series. And a few extra, really neat photos!

Such excitement! I was up until almost 5 am downloading files, and going into ecstasies about some of the beautiful art coming up!

The photos are about 50 years old, so they'll need a little help before they're ready to be shown off at their best, looking better than they did when they were taken. This is kind of the the artistic version of "digitally remastered."

Here's one of the photos I like. It's of one of the pins, which has seen better days.


The pin is original, but the photo is new. This is what some of the art looks like before we spiff it up. Look for this in the future cleaned up and looking brand, sparkly new!

I think that even after being in the Air Force and flying T-34s (fighter trainers), I'm still a kid at heart, and would love to have a set of Steve Canyon Airangers wings! My mom always did wonder what I was going to be like when I grew up!

For a taste of what's coming, see The Steve Canyon Blog, and get a copy of the Special Edition Steve Canyon DVD at a really low we-want-to-let-people-know-about-this price!

And check this out!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Tropical Storm Kyle on the Way

It was overcast and rainy all day yesterday, and it looks like it will be for a while. I usually tune in to the TV station that just says what the weather will be for today and a few days into the future.

But it doesn't show a map with information about highs and lows and so forth. I should watch the map more often because I had some meteorology training when I attended ground school to learn to fly, so I can look at the data in raw form and usually come up with a more accurate forecast than the weather people on TV.

So, we're going to have bad weather for a few days. Well, rainy, anyway.

I have to get moving if I want to get to the library during a lull in the rain, so this will be short.

The SciFi Channel will be showing Knight Rider tonight along with a new episode of Stargate Atlantis.

The episode of Knight Rider seems to be a repeat of the premier earlier in the week, which I missed because it was on at the same time as two other shows I really didn't want to miss, and which wouldn't be shown again until reruns. I am a little ambivalent about Knight Rider, but I'm going to give it the benefit of the doubt until I actually get to see it.

One new show that's really exciting (at least to me) will be on tonight on the History Channel. It's called Hacking History, and is about the history of more recent technology. There was an article about this on io9, but I can't find it anymore. It raved about Nicola Tessla, and his experiments with electricity. The show's listing says it does deal with the history of electricity. I don't know if that's all it's ever going to deal with, or if that's what it's about this week. But it sounds like it will be fun finding out.

I have to run, now. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Short Post Today

It's been an overcast, rainy day all day today here. This is the kind of day where I used to wake up, look out the window and want to crawl back into bed and hibernate until the sun came out again.

So, not much happening here.

Tonight, Supernatural will be on, and the website won't commit itself about whether it's the season premier, but I think it is. Anyway, Dean will be back from the dead, and nobody knows why.

This isn't science fiction, but Ugly Betty and the season premier of Grey's Anatomy will be on, too.

I have to go, but just thought I'd say Hi!

Have a great evening. I know I will.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Creepy Books

I read a blog over on Xanga by Fibermom. She's looking for some creepy books for a group she joined that's starting to read creepy books now and up until Halloween. What Fun!

She asked for recommendations for creepy books and I thought you might be interested in my comment (which got out of hand and ran on and on).

Here's what I said:

I was surprised to find that I don't have many creepy books on my bookshelves.

I read Lightning by Dean Koontz recently. It's a time travel story told from the perspective of one person traveling through time in the normal way, so the story happens out-of-order for her, if you can follow that. Some arbitrary and scary things happen to our heroine, and she is saved over and over by a man who doesn't age. But will he continue to be able to save her? 

I also have A Wizard Abroad by Diane Duane. It's a youth book, but very good about a teen named 'Nita who is a wizard, and is sent to Ireland for the summer and runs into a lot of very old Irish myths come to life. And some of those myths are pretty scary. I enjoyed it tremendously. 

If you want evil sorcerers, vampires, werewolves and wizards, there are the Dresden Files books by Jim Butcher. They start with Storm Front. I can't recommend them highly enough, but in spite of all the magical creatures, not really creepy. They're scary, but not creepy, if you catch the difference. 

There's also Tam Lin by Pamela Dean.  articular version of Tam Lin, but I've heard praise from so many people about it. The traditional story has Tam Lin captured by fairies (more like Tolkein's elves, but with an evil streak). Tam is convinced that the fairy queen has bad plans for him, and tries to escape on Halloween with the aid of his mortal girlfriend. Fairport Convention has the Childe ballad of Tam Lin on a few of their CDs, but you can find it on Amazon available as a single song. It's VERY spooky! This is classical horror that's probably well over a thousand years old. 

My coat finally arrived yesterday, and it almost all that I could have hoped for! It IS faux suede, but, except for the weight, indistinguishable from real suede. The toggle buttons are plastic, but a pretty convincing copy of horn. And, amazement of amazements, they included an extra button (which immediately went in my button box--the one that I'm going to have to replace soon, because there's no room left in there). The buttons I bought from JoAnn Fabrics match them perfectly, so I can add them to fasten the mittens and hat to my coat so I won't lose them, once I figure out a good location for them.

I'm in ecstasy about the coat. And it's getting cooler lately, giving me hope that I may be able to wear it soon.

I'm going to regret that last statement later this Winter, when the high for the day doesn't get up to 22 degrees (F).

In intended to go to WalMart yesterday, but I got a late start, and due to a dead spot in the bus schedule, had to wait almost 45 minutes until the bus was due. It didn't show up until more than 15 minutes late, and then it wouldn't stop for me! Between the late start, and another half hour wait, I gave up on it. So, I have to do that today. And once it's done, I doubt that I'm going to want to walk over to the library, too.

There's not much on TV tonight. I'm going to be watching Bones. It's not SF, but it's good.

Have a great Wednesday!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Happy Autumn Equinox!

It's officially Autumn!

Today, the day and night portion of the entire day will be equal lengths. Days will get shorter as they've been doing since June.

It's time to get prepared for those gloomy Winter months, as I've been doing for a while with my hat/mittens/scarf set.

I should be out doing things today, but I don't feel well, and don't want to stray too far from a bathroom. So, no bus rides for me. I'm not sick. Just blah.

The premier season is really getting underway on TV at this point.

After a day of Dark Angel, the SciFi Channel will be showing 4 more episodes of Lost tonight starting at 7:00 pm (here). 

At 8 pm, NBC will be showing a recap of the previous season of Heroes, followed by the two hour premier of the new season of Heroes

Also at 8, The Sarah Connor Chronicles will be on.

For those of you who feel that three things you want to watch on at the same time is causing scizophrenia, G4 had the episodes of Lost that were shown on SciFi on later in the week last week, so it seems reasonable to think that they will do that again next week. Check local listings.

Looking forward to tomorrow night on TV, we will have a new episode of Fringe, a new Eureka, and the premier of The Mentalist, all on at the same time.

To prevent DVR meltdown, it should be noted that the new Eureka will be repeated at midnight, so you can record them all. Oh, and there will be a showing of the Eureka episode from last week at 8, too.

Such excitement!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

More Finished Knits!

Last night I stayed up late and finished all the stuff I made out of the Moda Dea Sassy Stripes (the color is Swish).

The reason for staying up so late is the edging I put on it. I've always wanted something with a whip stitched edge, but I knew it would be a lot of work. It's so much work that if I had stopped before finishing, I know I would never have finished it. I used some yarn from stash for the edging.

So, I found out two things about whip stitched edges. I really hate to do them. But I really love the result.


See? Isn't it pretty?

It works especially well with the cast-on and bind-off edges I used. The edge shows exactly where to insert the needle so that I get perfectly even whip stitches.

The total set includes: mitts, previously made in another almost matching yarn that's been discontinued, and are not shown here; a hat (with button loop on the top); mittens to go over the mitts, also with button loops at the cuffs; boot toppers for my navy Wellingtons; and, of course, a loooong scarf!

It was all made to go with this coat (which hasn't yet arrived):



and the Celtic sweater, which is my next project to finish.

You can't see it well in the photo, but the coat has a crochet slip stitch around the edges in an off white. That makes it look sort of hand stitched, and will go well with the scarf, etc.

All have a rich, expensive, hand-made feeling about them. I have a pair of Uggs boots in the same color as the coat, which I think will look smashing with it for times when the Wellies aren't appropriate, like when it's just cold. I suspect that I can use the boot toppers with them, too, if I want to.

So, the moment of truth comes for the sleeves for the Celtic sweater. When I was doing the cable for the shoulder straps, I originally planned to make drop shoulders. Then, for no reason I can explain at the moment, I actually made a fitted shoulder without thinking about the fact that it would mean I'd have to knit a sleeve cap. I'm actually going to have to write out the directions for that so that I'm sure the second one will be a duplicate of the first. Can't have miss-matched sleeves!

I've also been delaying working on the sleeves because I have no idea how I want the cuffs.

Do I want the set-in sleeves to act like normal set-in sleeves until the elbow (or just below) and then flare into bell sleeves? Probably. Sleeves that taper all the way to the cuff just don't seem like they'd look right with the rest of the sweater.

I'd actually like to do a knot like the one on the top of the hood on each sleeve and have it go into a braid like the hood does. But I'm stumped about how to do that.

Once I solve those problems, there are pocket linings to knit, and a few places where a couple of things need a sewn stitch or two. The braid goes right off the front of the sweater into button loops, but the loops want to twist. A stitch or two will make them lay flat and look professional (once they're blocked).

Then there's the blocking and the buttons and I'm ready to  wear it in public and impress people.

I need some new clothes to go with all that. Some of my winter shirts are so threadbare that you can almost see through them. They'll need replacing. Most of them are over 10 years old!

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In other news, you probably already heard this, but George Takei got married or partnered, or whatever they're calling it these days.



You can see Nichelle in the background, and almost see Walter, too. Read more about it here. There are lots of photos, too! I envy everyone at the wedding. Nichelle is such a good hugger!

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I wish I had some science fiction news, but I just read io9, and feel like I know nothing. If you're a SF fan, you should read it!

We have Lost to look forward to tomorrow night on SciFi of course. And Sarah Connor, of course, if you want to miss the recap of Heroes.

The really big news Monday evening is the season premier of Heroes, though. One of my favorite shows is back! 

My DVR runneth over!

Have a great weekend!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Strange Saturday

I woke up really early this morning (for me, almost middle of the night). I staggered to the bathroom (which was what prompted awakening at that insane hour), dragged myself back to bed, and the phone rang.

I answered it and was greeted with my daughter's voice demanding "Why are you up so early?"

Half asleep, I had visions running through my brain of causing cosmic ripples through space and time just because I was awake. Ramifications so dire that she had to call to find out why the planet was tilting.

Once I explained, then she wanted to make sure that I was aware that I had listened to bad information on the news. My mistake was listening to a news report on a broadcast TV station. She proceeded to explain that Robin had listened to the news on PBS, and it was so much more reliable. She may be right about that. 

She then launched into an explanation that there's no basis for thinking that the bank I deal with might fail because 39 banks have recently failed according to the FDIC (plus two more that I know about since then). She said that those banks failed because they were "playing the stock market."

When I was in Junior High (about 50 years ago), the teacher told us about banks. He said they make money by "investing money." I asked how they invested money, and he said "By loaning a portion of the deposited money (such as for mortgages) and collecting interest on it, and by investing in stocks and bonds." That seemed like a risky plan to me when I was 14, but it's worked pretty well up until now, so maybe I was wrong about the risk.

But I still don't see how that means that keeping money in a specific bank is safe.

Oh, and she said that even though the news report I saw said specifically that the FDIC was broke, they were WRONG! They also said that some people high in the government had a meeting and said that the problem is fixed (without saying how).

Then she said that the broadcast TV news programs were reporting that the FDIC was broke because the government wanted them to do that.

The US government wants to convince citizens that they're incompetent and failing? Well, we knew they are anyway. 

Did I miss something?

Probably. I was half asleep at the time. It's possible that she didn't say what I think she did.

Then, she called back later to say that when I wrote "Arrrrg" yesterday, I misspelled it, and that it should be spelled "Arrrr."

I want to go back to sleep!

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Somebody in the apartment place I live is moving out, and I got some stuff for almost nothing in their please-don't-make-me-move-all-this sale. 

Once I actually unpack at least most of the stuff I've been slowly unpacking for the past year, I should have a workable bedroom. And maybe I can find some stuff to sell.

Monday evening, we will have four more episodes of Lost. And I found a really zany article about the show online here. It favors the explanation that Lost actually has it's plot taken from an episode of Red Dwarf.

And, speaking of Red Dwarf, more news about the revival.

The same blog has a post about talking like a space pirate, too.

This all comes from a fabulous blog (news site?) I just found called io9.

The wit and the news keeps rolling on this not-to-be-missed site. I even found an article about Fringe being the most reassuring show on TV.

The new Primeval is about to come on BBC in America, and I want to catch it, so I'm going to stop writing now.

In the meantime, I hope you're having a great weekend!

Friday, September 19, 2008

It's Talk Like a Pirate Day Today!



I have lots of stuff to do today. I'll try to get a real post up later.

In the meantime, have fun talking like a pirate!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Depression Depression

I'm depressed because of the financial depression. And there is a depression. Read on...

The FDIC has published a list of recent bank failures.

They are full of such joy!

I read somewhere today that the FDIC has compiled a list of 124 banks in danger of crashing. There was no link provided and I haven't been able to find it.

I am investigating how to survive without a bank account. Well, I will be investigating right away.

I do a little investigating, and then it makes me nauseous (again) and I take a little time off before doing any more investigating.

I'm also looking for ways to make some money. Well, I've been doing that for a while, but without results so far. Any ideas would be appreciated!

Do not forget! I am available for a reasonable fee to create fabulous knitted Christmas presents for all the people on your list! Leave a comment!

Hats, scarves, mitts, mittens, wimples, hoods, Christmas stockings, shawls, sweaters and lots more are only limited by your imagination. For those with a limited imagination, I have a great one. Comment and tell me about the intended recipient, and I'll find a way to make a gift they'll love!

The next big event coming up is the Fall Fiber Festival. We'll be going on the 4th of October. I wold be really looking forward to that if the economic situation weren't so bad. I can't believe that I can't drum up some enthusiasm for this.  I feel like Marvin in Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.

The season finale of Burn Notice will be on USA tonight! You can also see a rerun of Supernatural on the CW.

Hopefully, I'll be less depressed tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Talk Like a Pirate Day!

Friday will be Talk Like a Pirate Day, and you can read more about it on the Anticraft blog.

I took the test for the name, and this was the result:



My pirate name is:


Captain Morgan Rackham



Even though there's no legal rank on a pirate ship, everyone recognizes you're the one in charge. You have the good fortune of having a good name, since Rackham (pronounced RACKem, not rack-ham) is one of the coolest sounding surnames for a pirate. Arr!

Get your own pirate name from piratequiz.com.
part of the fidius.org network

Thought I should warn you so that you can get ready.

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In the meantime, I turned in my homework for herbology in the Harry Potter KAL.

We were told to make a washcloth in hemp, or if hemp wasn't available, cotton. This is the result.


Regular readers of this blog (if you're out there, let me know) may remember this yarn from the Douglas Adams Towel Day KAL I was involved in earlier this year. The moss stitch it's knit in matches the border on the towel, and it was made from left over yarn from the towel, so I now have a matched set.

Some of the washcloths were spectacular. If you're on Ravelry, you can see the thread here.

In other knitting-related news on Ravelry, I have gotten into almost an argument about Knit Picks Telemark yarn. It's labeled as sport weight, but it's really like a worsted weight with a bit more twist. You can read about it here. I made a statement, and then got several comments saying that what I said was all wrong, and then repeating what I said to prove I'm wrong.

I'm feeling really bad about this. 

I don't want to argue. 

My last post on the subject pointed out that it is my opinion, based on my experience, and they're not going to change my mind by telling me I'm wrong (especially by repeating what I just said), and I'm not going to discuss it any more. I don't want to be cranky with people, but repeating what I just said to prove I'm wrong is not the way to make me agreeable.

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I tuned into the news last night while it was already in progress. They were talking about a large bank in DC that crashed yesterday and was bailed out by the US Government. I missed a lot of the details, such as which bank. But they ended the news story by saying that the government has bailed out so many banks that there is no more money left in the F.D.I.C.!

So, even if your bank is insured by F.D.I.C., that may not help you if they crash.

Nobody (including the government) seems to have a clue what will happen when the next bank crashes.

Since last night, I heard that another bank crashed yesterday. That may have been in the beginning of the news story I caught. The part I missed by tuning in late.

And in related news, I had some extra money last month, which was lucky, because I had the money to keep my phone from being turned off. So, I spent $100 on that project, and a small amount on a few very inexpensive things I had been wanting for a while. So, I should have had nearly $200 left of the extra money. $100 at the least. But when I went to check this morning, the online section of my bank said I had been overdrawn, and took $100 out of the money I just got from Social Security today.

I have to go back and really read everything and check out what happened. It's possible that I made an arithmetical error, but I don't think so. The company that financed my car has been threatening to (illegally) take money out of my checking account. If that's what happened, they're going to be sorry.

If that's what happened, I won't be having a bank account anymore. I have already been thinking about closing my bank account in an attempt to forestall the personal problems that my bank crashing might create for me.

The reason I didn't check through my account earlier to find out what happened  is because I checked through it carefully less than a week ago, and there were no unusual withdrawals, I checked my arithmetic, etc., before I took out a little money for the Renfair. And because I got so sick to my stomach looking at what little was left that I thought I was going to throw up.

When my stomach settles, I'm going to go through everything and see what happened. In the meantime, I'll be giving up eating for the coming month. Whether I want to or not.

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As far as TV and science fiction are concerned, there's not much on tonight. In fact, there's really nothing at all. I'll be watching Bones, because it's interesting, but it's not science fiction.

The same could be said for tomorrow night. A rerun of Supernatural will be on, and that's always worthwhile.

Monday, Heroes will be back, though! I can't wait! They'll be putting on a recap of previous events before this season starts. Check your local listings!

I need to go, now.

Have a great day!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Bank Crashes!

First, let me get the fiber art content out of the way.

I found a video on how to make a lucet cord. You can find it here. I haven't really watched it yet. My computer doesn't do well with videos, and I have more trouble hearing them since the sinus/throat/ear infection and bronchitis in June, so they're usually not too interesting to me.

But lucet cords are so useful that I think all knitters and fiber artists should learn to make them.

I started reading a blog today, and the blogger (Jane) was talking about bank crashes. She lives in England, but she pulled my head out of the sand. I did a quick Google of bank crashes, and came up with a lot of scary information. 

Banks in the United States are crashing! It's happened to several already. And economists are predicting and preparing for more. Freddie Mac and Fanny Mae have had to be bailed out by the US government, and are essentially now government owned.

Everybody's marveling at the fact that banks are crashing and we're not even in a recession. 

I've said it before, we have been in a recession for years. About the time economists started speculating on whether we were going into a recession (at least a year ago), we had already started into a depression. The government is just pressuring authorities not to say that.

And while we're on the subject of US Government, since I live near DC, I can say with authority (because I saw it) that after the "plane" crashed into the Pentagon, there was no plane. There was lots of rubble from the building, but no plane. Somebody (apparently) bombed the Pentagon. Who?

Which is causing a personal depression for me. I'm wondering if I still want a bank account. At all.

Well, on to happier topics, namely Science Fiction and Fantasy.

There will be a new Eureka tomorrow night on the SciFi Channel! And Return of the Jedi will be on Spike.

Tonight, on the SciFi Channel, they will be showing reruns of Lost, from the very beginning. There will be the two hour pilot, followed by two episodes.

I missed the beginning of it on the first go-round, tried to start watching in the middle and found it confusing. So many people have told me such good things about it that I just have to watch it, though.

More great knitting stuff tomorrow.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

The Maryland Renaissance Festival!

The Maryland Renaissance Festival was wonderful yesterday.

It was also way beyond warm and into danger-to-life-and-limb territory.

A lot of walking can be a problem for me, but yesterday I didn't do much walking because of the heat.

It was so good to see Malaia and John again! They are both so much fun! They showed up in Renaissance garb, and Holly was determined to do the same, even though she arrived wearing shorts.

Everett, Jeff and Ashton were welcome additions to the group, too.

After looking around a bit, she found and bought this outfit. Very Pirate. She later bought a tri-corn hat to complete the look.


I was afraid that I would be having so much fun that I would forget to take any photos. Well, I remembered, but I didn't take many photos, and that's always a mistake. One of the major secrets of really great photography is to take lots and lots of photos. Some of them will be exceptional just out of shear happenstance.

I didn't take enough photos of Malaia and John, and this is the poor result:


Well, we'll be going back to the Renfair again before the end of the season. I know. Holly bought me a two day ticket, so I still have it left for the next trip.

I bought a few pieces of really beautiful rocks (amethyst and fluorite) and a cup from the Dancing Pig.

This has a rounded bottom on the inside, and that means it's useful for scooping out small items stored in it. Oh, and it has a star on it. I love stars.


I finished the mittens (which only required blocking--I'll do some garter stitch at the cuff next time instead of going right into stockinet stitch) and the boot toppers witch also required a bit of steam in spite of having a garter stitch border.

Here's a photo of two of the mittens. Since they're ambidextrous, I always make three so that when you lose one, you still have a pair.


I haven't gotten around to taking a photo of the boot toppers yet. When I finish the scarf, I plan to take a photo of them all together.

On Monday evening, (early), the SciFi Channel will start rerunning the entire Lost series. I know so many people who love that series, and who swear it's science fiction, so here's my chance to find out.

I watched two or three episodes from somewhere in the middle, and didn't get it, and didn't see anything to suggest that it was SF. So now I can find out if I was wrong. They'll be showing the two hour pilot, and two more episodes, so I can get a good, big dose of it.

You may notice that they'll also be showing Charlie Jade later (early Tuesday morning). I had heard a few good things about it, but it's very muddled. The plot seems to mill around in a circle most of the time.

John Ellis is bugging me to finish this post and get it out so he can see the photos.

I hope you all got the chance to see the big announcement on his blog yesterday. If not, check it out here.

I hope your weekend was as much fun as mine!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Hi! It's Friday!

It's Friday, and tomorrow I will be at the Renfair, so don't expect a post.

And today, I have lots of stuff to do, food shopping (because I need some), a trip to the library (a book came in), filling out more paperwork (because it's the only way I'll be rid of it) and laundry (which I hate, because it exposes me to all sorts of allergens and makes me want to pass out afterward). So, I have to get started on that.

The paperwork will be easier because I finally got System 9.2 installed, so I can now use Quark XPress to write letters. I know that XPress is overkill if all I wanted to do is write letters, but I have it so that I can do other things with it, and since I'm so used to working with it, it's a shame not to use the program that makes things easy for me.

Finally! It's taken me more than a year to get this computer up and running and capable of doing what I need to do on it! And, I even got the cable earlier this week to plug into the internet permanently and not have to run a cable across the living room floor and then unplug it when I'm done with the internet. 

I have a whole pile of knitting projects that just need a few more stitches and/or some blocking to be finished. If I don't get them done tonight (unlikely), I may make a stab at them on Sunday, depending on how bad I feel. I expect to be doing a lot of walking tomorrow, and that usually makes me feel bad the next day.

I know. That actually means that I should be doing more walking every day to build up to it.

So, anyway, photos coming up real soon now.

There is news on Dollhouse! Check it out!

For all you Steve Canyon fans, be sure to check the Steve Canyon on DVD blog tomorrow! There will be big news. I've been sworn to secrecy (due to having gotten details wrong in the past), but can tell you that John has big things planned. While you're there, you can get the special edition DVD at a good discount. 

H, have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Important Notice!

The Doctor Who episode, Blink will be on tonight (more accurately, tomorrow morning) at 5 AM on the SciFi Channel (check local listings for exact time where you are).

This is a stand-alone story. You don't have to be interested in Doctor Who to watch. It's a quiet, understated little horror story. The Doctor does appear in it, but he's just there to provide the time travel aspect of the story.

This is the only episode of Doctor Who I've found that nobody dislikes. It's the one episode that everybody wants made into a spin-off series.

This is not really a post. I'll put a post up later.

But this is important.

******************

Addition:

I just found a neat group on Ravelry: Folklore and Fairy Tales. They're having a Fall KAL with the theme of Tam Lin

For anyone who doesn't know, it's an old Scottish legend about a knight who falls from his horse and is caught by the queen of fairies. She keeps him prisoner for 7 years, during which he meets a girl and they become very close (she's having his baby). At the end of 7 years, the queen must pay a tithe to hell, and Tam Lin is afraid it's going to be him. He tries to get his girlfriend to save him.

Fairport Convention did the song, and I love it. The lyrics to the song are here. There was also a movie made, which was originally called Tam Lin, but has been rereleased as The Devil's Widow, which is a name that does not fit at all. 

Anyway, I started to realize that I really do like fairy tales, so there is a whole new Fairy Tale section in my Amazon store, and a link for it in the sidebar full of stories and movies recommended by the participants in the group.

I may or may not get an actual post up here today.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Hi, Jean and Harry!

My sister got an email from my aunt and uncle, (Jean and Harry) who have moved and wrote to let her know. She forwarded it to me, and I sent an email to them with my information, and they checked my blog!

Unless Harry's interested in science fiction, I expect him to be bored with this pretty soon. But I think Jean will be interested in the knitting and what's going on with the family.

Jean and Harry met because of a different historical reenactment group, the N-SSA (the North South Skirmish Association). They reenact the Civil War. I used to go to the events with Jean, and that's how I met Harry, too. He was in Hampton's Legion. Every once in a while, I see a car or (more usually), a truck or van with a Hampton's Legion sticker on one of the windows, and I feel nostalgic.

I may not have mentioned to them that I went to some N-SSA events after I stopped going with them. 

One day, a friend of mine, Randy, showed up all happy. He said that he was tired of me knowing all about everything, and he was sure that he had found something that I didn't know anything about at all.

He went into a long description of guys getting dressed up in Civil War gear and going and shooting muskets and cannon in competition. I said, "Oh, the N-SSA!" He looked a little confused, and said something about "Yeah, I think that's what Doug said."

At the first event I went to with him, we were signing in, and I looked over my friend's head, awestruck and said "Oh, wow! A Gatling gun!" Someone really did bring a Gatling gun!

Anyway, I went to a few skirmishes at Ft. Shenandoah in the Virginia hills out West from here. As usual, it was loads of fun! I love shooting black powder!

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I thought I was going to have the glow-in-the-dark Christmas stocking done today, and I probably will have it done later today. But no photo yet. Tomorrow.

***********************

My TV watching (Fringe and Eureka) was interrupted last night by a phone call from John Ellis. That's always a happy interruption!

If you click the link for John, you'll see information about some of the things he's done. I also worked on Invader and New Genesis. New Genesis had the working title of Twilight of the Dogs.

He wanted to alert me to the fact that we will be doing covers for new Steve Canyon DVDs real soon now. Well, I knew that, but it's always fun to talk to him. He was trying to see how many Steve Canyon episodes he could fit on one DVD without losing quality while he was taking to me. There is some new technology he's trying out. Unfortunately, it all went horribly wrong while he was talking to me and he had to hang up to go fix it.

You can see the cover I did for the first Steve Canyon DVD at the site above and order a copy there, if you want.

*************************

I've been thinking for a while that I might like to write a biography. As biographies go, it doesn't have much in the way of a plot.

But then, I thought it might be interesting to somebody if I wrote a little bit of a biography one day a week. Just a post about something that happened to me.

When I was 17, I thought about what I might want to do with my life. And I thought about all the fun things that I could do if I wanted to. And I resolved to have an exciting and fun life. I think I've done well at that goal, and I'd like to share the fun.

So, what I want are opinions. Does this sound interesting? Do you want to read about it?

Let me know.

Have a great Wednesday!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Quick Update

Here's a current photo of the progress on the Christmas stocking for the Harry Potter KAL.


The top of the stocking is at the left. There is a line of grey yarn where I'm going to put the heel, and I have started the toe over on the right.

By the time I got to the heel, I had enough star beads (in white) to do one more round, so I switched to the sort-of-round ones so I'd have enough for the whole stocking.

I got a big, (I think it's one pound) bag of glow-in-the-dark beads. But I think less than half of them are stars. And some of those stars are fluorescent orange, bright pink, yellow, green and purple. Maybe another color, too. So, that doesn't leave much when you just want white stars.

I expect that it will be done tomorrow.

Tonight is the premier of Fringe! I can't wait to be impressed!

And a new episode of Eureka is on SciFi.

I have lots to do today, so I have to run.

Have a great day!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Photos and Science Fiction

No, I don't have  a photo of the mittens yet. I haven't blocked them.

But I have so many photos today that another one would really jam things up.

Friday, after I left JoAnn Fabrics, I was standing out by the curb, waiting for the bus and I looked up and saw this:


One of the prettiest skys I've ever seen. The fact that hurricane Hannah was arriving later in the day may have had something to do with it. It really was pretty, though.

Yesterday, I bought my bad weather boots. By that I mean boots for bad weather. Pay attention to this. It doesn't seem like it, but this will eventually be knitting-related.


I have a choice between a long scarf and boot toppers or a really long scarf to finish up my blue multi set of stuff.

I chose the boot toppers. So, the finished parts of the set include: mitts, watch cap, and mittens. The still-to-be-finished part includes a scarf and boot toppers. The boot toppers haven't been started yet.

So, the photo shows you what one of the boots looks like all by itself.

I have to have my charms project for the Harry Potter KAL done by the first of October, and I just got the final component to make them, so I started on that last night.

Here's a photo of the sample swatch. I just want white (glow-in-the-dark) stars strewn across a dark blue background. I used the fluorescent orange beads for the sample because I can't envision a project that could possibly use beads in orange, so I can keep the swatch without unravelling it because I know I won't need the beads.


Here's where I've gotten so far:


The navy yarn does not glow in the dark. All the white stuff does. It's going to be very Ravenclaw.

************************

Now on to the science fiction news!

The SciFi Channel is putting on some neat stuff this week during their daytime rotation.

Tomorrow will be a synopsis of the first year of the new Doctor Who, starting with Rose, and finishing with The Parting of the Ways. Since there are too many episodes to fit in that time frame, they will be skipping some of them. One that will be skipped that I will miss is Boom Town. The story isn't among the best, but I love the scenes with Rose, Mickey, Jack, and the Doctor. They're such a terrific group! 

But The Empty Child and The Doctor Dances will be included, as will Bad Wolf and The Parting of the Ways. So, you'll get to see the episode where we seem to first get to meet Captain Jack Harkness. You'll also get to see where we actually first get to meet Jack in The End of the World, even though you won't recognize him. And you'll get to see what Rose does that will change Jack forever.

Oh, and, very important, the Doctor Who episode Blink will be on SciFi on Friday morning at about 5 am. Blink seems to be everyone's favorite episode, and the Doctor hardly appears in it at all!

Continuing with the daytime schedule on SciFi, Wednesday will bring us Stargate SG-1. Highlights from that include 200, where the team tries to help Martin Lloyd with a script for his TV show, and The Quest (a two part episode) followed by Line in the Sand, where the team has an adventure based on the Arthurian legend.

Thursday during the day on SciFi we have The Twilight Zone, followed by Dark Angel on Friday.

Tuesday evening, SciFi will be showing a new episode of Eureka, (Phased and Confused) right after they show again the episode from last week and two weeks before that. If you want to watch Fringe, the new Eureka episode will be rerun later.

Tuesday evening will also be memorable for the premier of Fringe on Fox.

Well, it's Fall on TV. We new that good, or at least new things were coming.

******************

In the meantime, I'm looking forward to Saturday and the Renfair. The question is, do I want to dress up for this? Holly pointed out that Malaia and John will be wearing garb, and she probably will, too, unless it's really warm.

Well, that about does it for one day.

Have a great Monday!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Castle

For all you fans of Firefly, who are keeping track of the actors who were in it, there is a new TV series coming up midseason this Winter that you'll be interested in.

The new show is called Castle, after it's main character, Nick Castle, played by Nathan Fillion.

Just click on the the link for Castle, it says it all much better than I can. OK, so it's not science fiction, but it looks like it's going to be good.

********************

Today, Holly and I went out together.

First stop was Michaels, where I bought 4 balls of white glow-in-the-dark yarn for the Christmas stocking I'm making for my September Charms homework in the Harry Potter KAL.

I have a swatch for the beads nearly done, and there will be at least one photo tomorrow.

We stopped at WalMart and picked up some miscellaneous necessaries, and then it was over to TJ Maxx in the Potomac Mills Mall to get the boots I saw on Friday and didn't get. Photo tomorrow.

Then we walked around the mall a bit, and Holly got one of the prettiest heart necklaces I've seen. She had it engraved "Holly" on one side, and "Robin" on the other.

We got pretzel dogs from Aunt Annies, and while we were sitting and eating, she said "I have bad news for you. You're going to have to get up early next Saturday morning." I was delighted!

Yes, it's true, we'll be going to the Renfair on Saturday. I'll try to remember to take pictures, but usually I'm having so much fun that I don't remember to take pictures.

It's been a long day, and I did a lot of walking on Friday and today, so I'm going to cut this short.

But not before I remind you that the premier of Fringe will be on Tuesday night on Fox.

I hope you had a great weekend!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Hannah Came to Visit!

Yes, folks, hurricane Hannah is here. She's planning on leaving soon, though.

It was pouring down rain when I woke up, and it's still falling out of the sky.

There are flash flood warnings in my area.

Holly sent me a text message and asked if we could postpone going out.

Really, it's not so bad. A lot of rain is coming down, but I'd never guess it's a hurricane from the lack of wind. Yes, I saw the radar images on the weather channel, but this is more like a warm front rain.

Cold fronts bring storms. Warm fronts just bring rain that goes on and on.

Yesterday, I went shopping at Potomac Mills Mall. People are starting to speculate on whether we're into a recession or not. We've been in a recession for about five years (although the statisticians have played with the figures to try to prove we're not) and we're in a full-blown depression now. The mall is the proof.

This is the first year that I've gone shopping in September and could find almost nothing in the way of Fall and Winter shoes, clothes, etc. The mall was a very sad place yesterday. I was looking for Fall and Winter shoes, and they had lots of summer sandals on clearance, but not very much in the way of real shoes or boots. It was pathetic.

I found some Totes boots on clearance for $10, which I would have bought in an instant if they had been navy blue, but they only had black. I was thinking about going back and getting them, but I think (after a lot of consideration) that the navy rubber boots at TJ Maxx may be a better idea. They would be warm with heavy socks (if they're big enough) and waterproof for when the snow turns to slush. And tall enough that the snow isn't going to slosh in over the tops of the boots and treat my feet to a dose of frozen water. 

There may be something wrong with me. I've always wanted navy blue Wellingtons, and never had them. At 65, I may not have another chance. They'll look good with my new coat, and boots for under $20 has to be a good deal. What am I waiting for? I should just get them.

I'd like some dressy shoes and some sneakers, too. I was hoping to remedy that situation yesterday, but no luck.

I did knit almost half of a mitten on the bus and waiting for the bus, though.

At this point, I have three (ambidextrous) mittens and a hat finished, and have enough multicolored blue yarn left for a very long scarf. I keep thinking that there must be some small item that I'd like to use some of that yarn for. Maybe a tam? Will that go with my coat?

Time to dig out my copy of Homespun, Handknit. This is one of the knitting books I love most. A magazine (I think it was Spin-Off, but I'm not sure) had a contest for patterns for small projects using handspun yarn, and they published the winners in a book, and this is it. It's a great book to just sit and read. Even if you're a very experienced knitter, it's got so many tips and tricks hidden in the patterns that it's really a treasure. One of my all-time favorite knitting books!

Oh, the mittens are knitted, but the cuffs want to roll up, so they need a bit of blocking before they're ready for their close-up.

On the way to the mall, I stopped at JoAnn Fabrics and got some nifty things.

First, there are the glow-in-the-dark beads for my Harry Potter KAL charms class. That was good. The mittens and hat I just made all have button loops on them so I can park them on a button and not lose them while at the same time not filling up my pockets. The coat will probably need some extra buttons just for them, and I found some beautiful ones that I think will match (or at least go with) the buttons on the new coat. If not, they will match some buttons I already had for future projects. I love my button box!

I also got some things to go with the single Options needle that I've bought so far. They had some coiless safety pins in the bead department for 30% off. Others have pointed out to me that these are great to pin to your project to use rather than the little wire things that go with the needle or cable sets. The little wire things are just guaranteed to get lost, they're so small. But a pin fastened to your project is not going anywhere and is perfect for tightening the cables.

I also found some needle pullers. They're small pieces of a rubber-like material to grip a sewing needle that's stuck in some fabric and doesn't want to move. They're also great for gripping the Options needle tip so you can fasten on the cable.

Well, there were several things I planned on doing today, but they involve going out, and I don't happen to have an ark handy, so I'll probably do them tomorrow.

A rerun of Chuck is on tonight. And a new episode of Primeval on BBC in America.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Eureka! (again)

No, this is not about the show on SciFi.

This is about the Harry Potter KAL that I joined. It's very different than most. Each month, various "teachers" assign "homework" to do.

For instance, for Herbology, I need to make a hemp (or cotton, if I can't find hemp) washcloth. That's simple, straightforward, and only tricky if I decide it's so simple it's a foregone conclusion and I forget to do it.

For one of the classes, I have my choice of two projects: "Lumos" and "Wingardium Leviosa."

For Wingardium Leviosa, you have to make a project that either depicts something that flies, or (for extra points) something that actually flies (like a kite or something). I have no idea how you would make a kite that's functional.

The first thing that leapt to mind was something with a snitch on it like I made for  the other Harry Potter KAL.



I thought that would be the easy one, but It turns out I woke up in the middle of the night with a great idea for Lumos, which is a project that lights up.

I want to make a Christmas stocking out of dark blue yarn with glow-in-the-dark star-shaped beads strewn across it. This would not only glow in the dark, but would also work well with my house (Ravenclaw) since it's their symbol (as it was mine before JK even thought of Ravenclaw).

So, I'm off to JoAnn fabrics to buy some white, glow-in-the-dark star-shaped beads!

I'm going to love this one!

Have a great day.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

I Finally Finished Something!

I finally got so frustrated that I've finished the blue multi watch cap. 


I put a loop on the top of it so that I could fasten it to a coat button if I decided to take it off my head.

Tonight, the season opener of Bones will be on Fox Network.

I thought that the SciFi Channel would be showing a new episode of Eureka last night, but was disappointed to find that they were rerunning the third episode of the new season. What kind of a network does that?

I was rummaging around for new things to put in my Amazon store, and found a collection of the Complete Emma Peel Avengers. It doesn't have any episodes that don't have Diana Rigg in them, but there are three Avengers episodes that have her in them that never made it to TV, and they're included! Three Diana Rigg Avengers episodes that I've never seen!

Have a great day!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Exciting Day

I woke up this morning, and turned on the TV and sat and knit for a few minutes. I'm never really awake right at first, and usually do something fairly mindless for just a little bit rather than do something more complicated and mess it up.

So, I was sitting there watching TV and knitting, and I started to realize that there was a lot of NOISE.

I hit the mute button, and the sound from the TV went away, but there was still a lot of noise.

As I said, I'm not really awake when I first get up and walk around.

Checking out the window showed a hook-and-ladder fire truck. It had it's "feet" down and planted and looked like it meant business.

They raised the ladder, which was more of a cherry-picker, in this case, and swiveled it around, right past my window to stop next to the balcony next to my apartment, in front of my other window. The gentleman on the ladder had a conversation with somebody on the balcony.


Then they took the ladder away, packed up, and left. Another fire truck pulled up and unfurled it's ladder. They went to the same balcony, and then started to take it back to the truck.


Then they maneuvered to get next to my window.


As it turns out, they wanted to get in some practice using the gear, and decided to do it at my apartment place.

I don't like the way the mitts are turning out, and since I have mitts that almost match this yarn, I'm thinking that I might be happier with mittens to go over the existing mitts. So, I'm switching to mittens, and I'll frog the mitts if I like the mittens better. I'm thinking that I'll put a loop on each mitten (at the cuff, opposite the thumb) so that I can fasten them to a button on my coat when I take them off, and thereby not lose them.

So, now I have a scarf, hat, mitt and soon a mitten started and none finished. I think I'll have to finish the hat soon just to lessen the number of WIPs.

There's a new Eureka on the SciFi Channel tonight!

I hope you all got to see the Middleman last night. It was great!

Have a great day!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Happy Labor Day!

There has been lots of knitting going on, but it doesn't look like much. I did a gauge swatch for the mitts, but it was too loose, so it got ripped out and reknit, so there's not much that's actually finished.

The IRS made a big mistake and sent me a stimulus payment. I suspect that I'll have to give it back to them to pay taxes, but in the meantime, I have it.

My winter coat is ripped and looks old and really bad, so I was looking for a new one today, when I found this coat. A winter coat for about $30 including shipping? I couldn't let that pass. It doesn't look like it'll be very warm, but it looks wind resistant, and with warm clothes underneath it, it should be very warm. Which is good, because with lighter clothing, it'll be a good coat for chilly days, too. And for $25, I couldn't ask for more.

There will be what appears to be a new episode of the Middleman on ABC Family tonight.

I hope you're having a great Labor Day!

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