The truth

My friends Pat and Steve have this very awesome sign hanging in their kitchen.


This was someone else’s book

We are a family of book lovers. Unfortunately, we don’t have the space to maintain an extensive personal library at home, so from time to time we have to get rid of some books by selling some, giving others to friends, and donating most to our local library.

During these book sorts, I occasionally come across a book that catches my eye, such as this.


The content looks interesting enough (how about those illustrations!). I often see handwritten inscriptions or owners’ names, but this book actually has a printed nameplate:


A bit of googling led to me to his obituary on the Princeton Alumni Weekly website. He was born in 1929and died in 1998.

In between, “he was an important figure in the revival of scholarly and popular interest in the British Romantic period (1780-1830). He published critical studies of Keats and Shelley.” The obituary ends with this statement: “We have lost a major preserver of English literature.”

I can see how this book ended up in his personal collection. But how did it end up my hands, I wonder? I don’t think I can ever know.

I just came across this post in my drafts folder. I’m not sure why I didn’t publish it earlier–maybe I was planning to do some big writeup about these items? No big writeup is forthcoming now, but I can share a few comments about these two projects

I made this Little Hanten (from Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders) for a friend’s daughter. My friend and I went to grad school together (I remember many late nights working on our research grant proposals together!), and she now teaches at the University of Toronto. Now that I’m seeing this photo again, I remember how much I liked knitting this sweater. Another friend just had a baby, so I think I may need to cast on for another one of these soon!

Several years ago, I purchased a British knitting magazine (one of those that costs $20 here in the USA) just so I could get this gnome pattern by Alan Dart. My daughter asked me to make this for her, and she loves it. It’s fun to make, but seaming and sewing together all the parts (which are knit flat in the original pattern) is a PITA. So the next time I make one of these, I plan knit it in the round as much as possible.


On executions

“If we as a society want to carry out executions, we should be willing to face the fact that the state is committing a horrendous brutality on our behalf.”

“If we as a society cannot stomach the splatter from an execution carried out by a firing squad, then we shouldn’t be carrying out executions at all.”

U.S. 9th Circuit Court Chief Judge Alex Kozinski (a Reagan appointee)

I’d prefer to see no executions at all, of course.

But I do wonder how much public support for capital punishment would erode if the executions were not longer as “clean” and “sanitized” as they are now. Or if members of the general public were forced to witness the executions. Or if members of the general public were forced to pull the triggers.



Free lunch: Hats

I like how this pixie hat looks as a semi-slouchy hat with the point jauntily sticking up a bit in the back

This twirl and tie cap reminds me a bit of a barbership pole, with how the stripes just twist around at an angle. (Sizes range from babies to adults.)

When you’re in the mood to make a hat and don’t want to bother with figuring out gauge or fussing about yarn, you can make an any-gauge beret or an any-gauge earflap hat with any yarn you have on hand (and without having to do any math in advance). Just start at the top, knit each section until it’s the size you want, then keep going.

Hey, hey, it’s Mike Nesmith’s hat from The Monkees!

Finally, here’s a lovely hat with cabled owls all around it.

. . . Cookie Monster is hands-down the best life coach out there.

This awesome Web cam is in Hanover, PA. Two eggs were laid in mid-February, and based on average incubation periods that means they should be hatching any day now!

Even when they’re just hanging on their nest, bald eagles look totally badass.



Hello, spring!

Of course, winter just couldn’t say goodbye today without making a dramatic exit. 


Wind-blown snow on the playhouse floorboards:


“I sense a disturbance in the snow . . .” 




Current projects in clay

This is in porcelain. I’m trying to decide whether to keep the whole thing white, to use one color for the whole thing, or to use different colors for the ginkgo leaf and the background. 

These are waiting to be trimmed. I think I will try more carving on some of them. 

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