Well, I broke down and got a cat… we’ve been having seasonal problems with mice and they got much worse after they tore the house down on the corner. So here is lovely Caprilla, our new cat. I’m not sure that we’ll keep her name (given by the breeder) but it’s sort of growing on me.
She’s super friendly and very fiesty. She already destroyed the feather-flyer toy we got for her. And she’s quite a pouncer. We’re following the breeder’s advice and introducing her to one room of the house at a time. Right now, she’s curled up in a ball and sleeping on my lap. Last night she decided that yarn is her new toy
A Serviceable Sweater
I love vintage patterns. I was looking through the few books that are up on Project Gutenberg and I found this gem: http://www.gutenberg.org/files/26113/26113-h/images/illus-hr010-1.jpg
The book is called Handbook of Wool Knitting and Crochet and it was published in 1918. The main stitch pattern looks like a slipstitch ribbing. I think I could figure this out, but it seems a little cryptic. I wonder if “Knit 2, narrow” means Knit 2 together (k2tog). I really do like the collar on this sweater. I think I’d like to do it in a stone or pebble grey in a wool with a little alpaca for a bit of a halo.
The sweater pattern and the stitching seem very simple, but I’ve been taking comfort in knitting more simple things lately. I’ve retreated into knitting as my comfort zone, and now that the weather has become a little more chilly, I can spend nights knitting cozily with a blanket on my lap. I’ve also noticed that I’ve been finding working with mathematical adjustments to patterns a bit soothing as well. It feels nice to work through the math of adjusting the pattern size by figuring out changes proportionally. I’ve even found the process of swatching to get the right size soothing. Indeed, I think I’ve just come to enjoy the whole process from start to finish. Have I truly learned patience? I remember a time when I refused to swatch yarn at all. I wanted to dive into the pattern right away because damn it I wanted that scarf, hat, or sweater now! Knitting has taught me the virtue of patience and then some. Now I hope I remember this when I’m working on my next aran cable project.
But I found this pretty amusing. Dr. Who’s Sonic Screwdriver for sale for 14.99 here.
Sonic Screw Driver
Now there’s the total practical dork in me who thinks… you know I would get if it actually was a pen too… ’cause it really should do something… practical, and besides what the heck would I do with that but loose it in my purse? Then I read the description and it says… that it is a pen. Okay, maybe now I do have to get this…. but then I am bummed out again… because I find that they are sold out. Flap doodles! Five minutes later… I rationalize it thinking, “You know that is just UBER GEEKY.” This is UBER GEEKY… and no, I’m not buying that!
More classic Tim Conway from the Carol Burnett Show:
He does “Ow My Balls” without being so crass… and his physical comedy is brilliant.
I finished this in almost record time… less than a month. I aways do this with projects and fibers I love. I have decided that I am absolutely in love with Art Fibers Rush, and I’m planning to do one more sweater in it. Probably another pullover. I’m really happy with the drape of the fabric and even it’s warmth despite the fact that this sweater has a lot of lace openwork in it in the arms and sides.
Side Impact Sweater - Click the link to view the source of the pattern
I was also able to finish a scarf just in time for my brother’s birthday. It’s knit from Andy II Merino purchased at the Close Knit knitting store on Alberta here in in Portland. I really love this yarn, it’s spendy, but it’s worth it for a nice present for someone special.
Special Autumn Scarf
While I was at the store I was also able to pick up two skeins of Imperial Stock yarn… in a great heathered blue. Love this yarn. I also love that it’s locally based, and the colors are really beautiful. For the amount of yarn you get 200 yards of worsted 2-ply at little over 11 dollars a skein is quite a deal for locally grown and milled yarn.
Imperial Stock Yarn
We were once a big fan of Pix Patisserie, but my experience there Wednesday this week has changed my mind. Normally, I don’t blog about things like this but the service was so appalling that I had to say something. I thought there was something strange when we drove up to the corner of Williams and Shaver and noticed that the 5th Quadrant restaurant was overflowing with customers, while the patisserie had only a handful.
During the time we were there there were no more than four groups of customers, one being a single lone gentleman enjoying drink or coffee, but our waitress was one of the most addle-plated individuals I’ve ever seen serve a table. Several times we asked her to place orders for dessert and additional drinks, but she seemed very hard to get a hold of. When we did get a hold of her she would take one person’s order, then flit away. When we tried to stop her to let her know that others at the table were interested in ordering food, she flusteredly complained that she was the only waitress on staff (implying that she’d get to us when she could). Now, I would understand if the restaurant had been filled to the gills, but it was not.
For most of our visit, the staff played this music, not horrible to listen to but cranked up so loud and cacophonous enough to put anyone there in a sour mood. It was very difficult to talk or hold a pleasant conversation. To the restaurant’s credit, I think someone on staff got the clue and turned the music down about fifteen minutes before we left.
On top of this because we had more than 6 at the table she automatically affixed the 18% gratuity, and she got our orders wrong. While I can understand the normal 18% gratuity for a larger party, I felt that the charge was really unjustified considering the poor service we received.
Now I believe in giving people a second chance, because we all have to learn from our mistakes. I don’t think the waitress should be fired, but I do think that she should be given a battery of customer service courses, or maybe even think about having a different position that doesn’t require her to interact as much with customers. Our visit was so unpleasant that I will have to reconsider going there again for a long time, which is a pity because it was once one of my favorite places in North Portland.
Photo from the morgueFile