Monday, September 29, 2003 

I'm one proud crabmama today. Ephyra and Neptune are celebrities! Check them out on Wendy's site. For those of you wondering why in the world I would have hermit crabs for pets, here's the answer. My landlord wont allow pets, like cats or dogs. I really wanted a guinea pig, but figured that would really be pushing it. Plus, I don't have a ton of time to devote to caring for an animal right now. Fish are just too boring for my tastes. You can't even take them out and play with them. So one day, about 6 months ago, I was at the mall and I came across a kiosk that was just being set up that day. Inside this big sandbox were a bunch of these cute little hermit crabs running around. Then and there I decided I wanted one. Of course, I went home and spent days researching them so I knew I'd be able to properly care for them. Then I went out and spent close to $100 on supplies (cage, food, toys, sand, heater, dishes, chemicals, etc.) and set up their crabitat. A few days after that I rushed to Petsmart just before closing and picked out four. My parents get a kick out of calling them their grandchildren, and my family likes to joke that the guy at the pet store gave me crabs.

The next Stitch and Bitch meeting is tomorrow, so I'm looking forward to that. I was kind of hoping I'd have a few finished items to show off, but unless I get my shirts seamed up tonight, it probably won't happen. Tax class is just keeping me too busy right now to be super productive. But, I hope to have a new FO very soon!

Friday, September 26, 2003 

I saw Stalker Boy again today. He got on the train the station after mine. And as he walked past me, he made some comment like "see, you're here today," or something equally asinine. I just sort of smiled, and then turned back to winding the ball of yarn I was working on.

But also related to yesterday's post, there was a girl sitting next to me working on either an embroidery or sewing project. We struck up a conversation about our crafts, and I invited her to join my Stitch and Bitch group. Like I said yesterday, sometimes you meet some weirdos, sometimes you meet some cool people.

I've started seaming the Tahki Ravello shell. It said to block first, but I didn't. I just want to get the damn thing put together. And I also finished the two pieces for the BNS, and I just have to pick up and finish the neck and shoulder edges, and seam it together. I'll probably be bad and not block it either.

I also picked the felted tote bag back up this morning. It's been such a while since I last worked on it that I forgot what size needles I had been using (I'm using needles from my Denise set, so I took the needles off and put the caps on the end of the cord to make it a stitch holder). But, I took a guess, and I think I was right. If not, I guess I'll find out soon enough. I'm going to try (try!) to finish that this weekend so I can get it felted.

As promised, here are some pictures. The lighting in my apartment was pretty bad when I took these pictures, but I didn't realize it until I got back to work this morning and started transfering the pictures over. I won't post any pictures of my bag for that reason, but the other pictures are at least sort of see-able.

BNS waiting to be seamed

Tahki Ravello Shell (the color is actually a lighter purple. This picture is a lot darker than the top actually is)

I also took a number of pictures of the catnip mice I made for the mouse-a-thon. Everyone was taking pictures with their cats (or dogs), and I don't have either. But, I do have hermit crabs, so I picked Neptune and Ephyra to pose with the mice for me. Nixie and Dax were left alone (this time). Here's are those pictures. (BTW, those are the dining chairs I picked up at the thrift store a few weeks ago and reupholstered.)

Thursday, September 25, 2003 

One of the side effects of knitting in public is receiving unwanted attention from others. On most days I work on my knitting on the train to and from work (though less frequently now that I have homework to do for my tax class). At first I noticed fellow passengers watching me as I worked every stitch. Sometimes I'd look up and they'd look away quickly pretending they weren't staring, despite it being obvious.

I've never been one to mind being noticed. But sometimes it can get a little creepy or feel a little awkward.

One time I was waiting on the platform for an approaching train when this middle aged asian woman remarked that she had been watching me knit for a while. She claimed to remember me knitting something burgundy, but I knew for a fact that nothing I had been working on was either red, burgundy, or any other similar color. Despite telling her this, she insisted that she had seen me knitting something in that color. I finally just shrugged my shoulders in an effort to quash her persistance.

This morning as I was getting off the train a man approached from behind me. Suddenly he asked if I had moved recently because he claimed he didn't remember me "getting on the train so late." So late? I got on at the same time I always do. At first I just looked at him oddly, and then I politely said no. Then he said "I usually see you sitting, but this time you were standing." Which confused me since I had been sitting until just before I got off the train. Finally he left me alone. But, I remember this same guy from a few months earlier approaching me in the same manner as I was leaving the station. Out of nowhere he asked me if the object I was working on was my "first sweater" because he had seen me working on it for quite a while. I informed him that it was not a sweater, and that it was an afghan, for my boyfriend. I thought maybe he'd get the hint. Something just felt really wrong about this guy, and he kind of creeped me out. I'd hesitate to call him a stalker, because I too recognize a lot of faces form the train I ride every day. But, this guy does seem a little weird.

And it's not that all attention is bad attention. I've struck up some really great conversations with people on the train because of my knitting. Some people have been very interested in knowing what I'm making. Some were amazed that you could knit with anything other than wool and wanted to know what else you could knit with. Some said they kind of knew how to knit and asked me for a few pointers. And I even showed one woman how to knit with a set of circulars she had in her bag, yet couldn't figure out how to use. But I think there's something about someone indicating that they've "been watching you" that feels really off.

Fortunately my boyfriend works for the police department for that train agency, so if this guy starts to get on my nerves I can have him dealt with. Perhaps I should see if I can visually locate this guy on my train, and arrange for Jon to stop and talk to me on the train a few times, just so the guy gets the hint that not only am I not available, but that I'm involved with a cop. Maybe that'll scare him away from creeping me out again.

Tuesday, September 23, 2003 

I shoulda waited....

The haircut is done, and I'm not happy. I told her specifically shoulder length, yet she cut it to my chin. It was obvious even when it was wet. But, I guess once you've cut it too short, there's no going back. The only thing I can hope for is that it grows out quickly. And I think it will. In a month it should be the perfect length.

Here are before and after shots.



Keep in mind that the before shot is my hair more or less unstyled. I didn't wash it this morning, and instead threw it up into a ponytail. I took it down for the picture, so it looks a little messy, and not like it usually does (er, did).

I mean, I guess the new cut is okay...but it's not what I wanted. I'll just have to play around with it at home for a while to see if it can be salvaged.

The only good things about it are that it will be quicker and hopefully easier to wash and dry, and hopefully style. Plus, it does make me look a little older. And considering I'm always being told how young I look for my age, that's not a bad thing.

Monday, September 22, 2003 

One of these days I'll stop making appointments to have my hair cut a day in advance.

I have this bad habit of deciding suddenly that I can no longer live with my current do, which leads me to call a salon near where I work and ask if they have anyone available over the next few days.

For years I've been a haircut slut. I've rarely been faithful to a stylist for long. Sometimes I may stick with a stylist for a year or so, but usually at some point I find myself yearning for more, and thus having an illicit affair with another stylist. This typically leads to awkwardness when I return to my "regular" stylist because she can tell it's not her work. And that's usually when I realize that I cheated not for fun, but because my relationship with my "regular" wasn't right.

So then I begin chair hopping again, making last minute hair booty calls -- to stylists I don't even know. Desperate to find someone who can pleasure me in a way no stylist has ever done before, to send me in to a tantric hairgasm, I latch on to the first person that comes along. And then find myself disposing of them just as quickly when I realize they just don't know how to weild their tools the way I like it.

I try to be assertive and tell them what I want. Some just awkwardly fumble around my head, looking for the sweet spot, but never finding it. Others seem more into their own pleasure, giving me a cut that's more to their delight than mine. And sometimes I just want someone to have their way with me, yet still leave me in utter bliss at the results.

I've tried asking friends for recommendations on who they've enjoyed. I've tried seeing those with fancy credentials and years of experience. I've tried posting on message boards looking for people willing to share. So far, not so good.

One of these days I'll try doing lots of research, maybe seeing someone who is booked up weeks (or months?) in advance. Someone that busy HAS to be good, right? All I'm asking for is a cut that continues to look great even weeks after. I'm tired of this short lived post haircut glow. I want to be feeling it for weeks, and even months. I want something so good not even a cold shower will wash it away. Ah, one can dream....

In the meantime I'll ho myself again tomorrow. This time at one of the top salons in the area. The woman I'll be going to charges $80 for a cut and style, and the guy on the phone said she is "really good" (though I know to take that with more than just a grain of salt). If she really is as good as the guy says, and she finally does it for me, the $80 wont matter one bit. I'd pay quite a bit to find a stylist that can give me the kind of cut I'm after. Plus, that would mean I could finally settle down and be committed to one, and only one stylist.

In knitting news, I got nothing done this weekend. But, I will have pictures up over the next couple of days! I'm in the market to buy a new digital camera, so I'm going to borrow the one from work. I picked it out for our office, but I'd like to test it at home to see if it's one I'd like to buy for myself. I figure that will give me the perfect opportunity to snap some pictures of my current projects to post here. Look for those soon!

Thursday, September 18, 2003 

My first quiz in the tax course is over, and it was actually pretty easy (especially since the teacher did a "review" before hand that turned out to consist of all of the questions on the quiz). I've already got people hitting me up to do their tax return for them next year, for free. I don't know about all of that. Since I'll be working for H&R Block I'll be allowed to do a certain number (I think last year it was 15) of returns for free using H&R Blocks system (of course I can do as many as I like by hand for free). My boyfriend, parents, brothers, and best friend already have one of the coveted spots. My boyfriend's friend was trying to hit me up to do his return free too. This from the guy that never gives out Christmas/birthday gifts to anyone (or even a card) and instead says he's giving them the "everlasting gift of friendship." Yeah, well I have news for you buddy, that's all you're getting at tax time.

I spent a couple of hours after class last night stuffing mousies. The bells seemed to work fine inside. I just stuffed them down into the nose, and then packed a bunch of catnip inside. I have one more mouse to stuff (I've done 6). I may try to do a few more mice before I send them off, but that all depends on time. I'm trying to finish the BNS that I started a month ago. I had put it down for a few weeks while I was focusing on other things, both knitting and non-knitting related. But, I'm almost done with it, so I might as well finish it. Once it's done I'm going to finish the felted tote bag which is close to completion. I never did get any other yarn to make a stripe on the bag. I think instead I'll leave it all blue and add some decorative features after felting, like maybe some cool buttons or something. Or maybe I'll sew on some trim, or add a fun liner (even though I really don't want to have to sew in a liner).

Also, I'm a little behind on this week's Knitworthy. So, without further delay, here it is. Queer Joe posted a pattern for a Willy Warmer (or Peter Heater, or Weenie Beanie, or whatever you'd like to call it) on his site the other day. I had another printed pattern at home somewhere, and I was going to make a few up as gag gifts for some people. I liked QueerJoe's pattern, and decided to share it with those of you who haven't already seen it. Below is a picture of QueerJoe's completed Schlong Thong.

Tuesday, September 16, 2003 

After spending the last hour and a half perusing through the new issue of Knitty, I'm happy to say that I've found a few goodies for later.

The first is an article by Bonne Marie on how to make items that actually fit! My boyfriend doesn't know it, but next time he comes over I'm slapping a tape measure in his hand and making him get to work. I'm sure he won't mind wrapping the tape measure around various areas of my scantily clad body.

As for the patterns, there were some that just didn't do anything for me. But hopefully you, or someone else will enjoy them. What did turn my head and pique my interest were the following:

Accordian: This sweater is cute, classic, and looks very cozy. I love the fact that you can make it in both big people and little people sizes. How cute would a mother/daughter matching set be? Very cute, if you didn't already figure out the answer. Plus, it's very stylish, so if your little one has discrminating tastes (i.e. won't wear anything that didn't come from the Gap) this might just be the ticket.

Rosedale: Another winner from Amy at Indigirl. This would make a great casual jacket for fall. Will I end up making it? Maybe or maybe not, depending on what happens with all of my other projects. But I definitely like it and would consider it if I had the time.

Saity: When I first opened the page for Saity, my eyes popped and my mouth uttered "wow." I love peacoats, and this one looks really nice. It's the sort of garment I can see getting tons of compliments on -- especially people insisting that I couldn't have made something like that. The only thing I would really change is to add an extra piece of collar to the neck. Otherwise, for me, it just seems to be missing something. But overall, it's a great, and different design.

Sonnet: Looking for a quick, easy project? Sonnet would fit that bill nicely. This is very likely to end up on my WIP list at some point in the future. I'll make mine more fitted, and probably something work appropriate. If I like it enough, I'll probably make others for casual wear, gifts, etc. This is great to customize with your own special buttons too. I'll be on the lookout for some unique buttons to add to this cardigan.

Hoover: This is a must make. Not only is it a little piece of history, it's also super cute! If only one of my friends were pregnant so I'd have an excuse to make it...You heard me guys! Get busy making babies so I can make you great stuff like this. I'll probably knit one up in advance anyway, so that way if someone has a "surprise" pregnancy, I have a surprise gift waiting.


Yay! New Knitty out today!!!

I'll be back later with my thoughts on the anniversary issue.

Friday, September 12, 2003 

Must.... not.... fall..... aslee----zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. Oh! Sorry! I'm pooped, and dinner hasn't even been served yet. I was up until after midnight again. Although this time it was mostly my fault. I was behind in schedule, so I stayed up until midnight to compensate. Then, just as I was in that not-quite-but-almost-asleep state, a van pulled up outside my apartment (my windows were open because it was really hot yesterday) and woke me up. I think it was the company in charge of the lighting doing some repairs. But, they were making a lot of noise, and sticking ladders along the side of the building (by my windows!), opening and shutting the door of the van, chatting loudly, etc. They were making me nervous, and keeping me awake. So, I finaly had to force myself to fall asleep. Needless to say, I feel like a zombie this morning.

I started on the cake last night, although I'm a little upset because the cake layers came out a little flatter than I would have liked. I dicked around with the cake mix a little (added some sour cream). Maybe I shouldn't have done that. Oh well. I also made a chocolate mousse filling/frosting from scratch and I'm going to fill/cover the cake with that, and fresh raspberries. It was my first time making whipped cream out of heavy whipping cream, and my first time making mousse from scratch. But, so far I think I did a good job. My mother is an excellent baker (not as good of a cook, but her cakes and pies are out of this world). So, I've had plenty of experience watching. I just don't want to disappoint her! As long as it doesn't taste like poo, I'm sure she'll be happy though. I was hoping to get the cake finished last night so it could sit in the fridge all day, but it didn't happen. I got started too late to do it. So, I'll have to finish it when I get home.

And I was going to prepare the stuffed mushrooms last night so that all I had to do was pop them in the oven, but I realized that I didn't have any parmesan cheese!! WTF? I could have sworn I had parmesan cheese. I did have a wedge of asiago that I could have tried to use, but I think it wasn't quite hard enough to grate well. Maybe....but I figured I'd just stop by Walgreens after work and grab a can of parmesan cheese, and red wine vinegar (the other thing I thought I had, and didn't).

At least most of my apartment is clean. I just need to vacuum, straighten up the slip covers on the couch, make my bed and put away some laundry, screw the seats onto two of the dining chairs I bought the other day, take out the trash, and clean the toilet. Jon is coming over after work, so I left him a list of stuff he could do to help me out -- and a lot of that stuff was on there. That way, I can get home and worry about cooking instead of worrying about cleaning. The only thing I just realized I wont get to do (I should have done it this morning before leaving for work) is to mop the kitchen floor. I guess it'll have to do with a sweep, and a quick wipe with a damp washcloth. It's not like it's that dirty. It mostly needs to be mopped.

Other than that, I just need to finish the cake, make and cook the mushrooms, make and cook the herbed potato wedges, make the green beans (which will take more than a few minutes because I'm making a special dressing for them), set the table (which I can probably get Jon to help me with), and keep myself from drinking the entire bottle of wine before my parents get here. I'll relax once dinner is served. And then tonight, I'll sleep like a bear.

Unfortunately I wont get to sleep in much tomorrow because Jon and I are going to a Giant's game. I wonder if I should take my knitting with me to the game....probably not. Jon would probably give me a hard time about it. Although, if the ball came my way, maybe I could catch it by spearing it with one of my knitting needles. Ha!

Thursday, September 11, 2003 

In Memoriam of 9/11

I'm so tried I could fall over dead. Someone in the complex was having a little party last night (on a Wednesday night?!?!) and all the "homies" were being loud, drinking in the parking lot, urinating behind the utility fences, throwing trash around, etc. Since I don't live in the ghetto, I don't expect this sort of behavior. Two individuals (a guy and a girl) were fighting pretty vigorously for about an hour. She was sitting in her car, he was leaning in her window. Every other word was "f**k" and the words in between seemed to all be expletives too. My windows were closed tightly, yet I could hear every friggen word they were saying. Finally, I got sick of it (it was 11:30 at night, and I couldn't get to sleep with all the noise), and I called the cops. They showed up, broke up the arguing, and at the very least allowed me to get to sleep -- at almost 12:15. That left me with about 6 hours of sleep (during a week that I'm running myself pretty thin). Damn hoodlums. Take your disrespectful ghetto trash elsewhere. But not in my community. Next time I'll just have to go out there and stab you in the eye with my knitting needle, if that's what it takes to teach you some respect. (Okay, I'm really not that violent, but last night I wished I had a sling shot or gun that could shoot DPN's at the punks).

Listen to me. I sound like an old lady.

Oh my God, I AM an old lady! First of all I knit. And I knit in public. And I've knit in a rocking chair. Plus, I'm wearing knee high stockings under my slacks. That's what little old ladies wear! Then there are all the miscellaneous gray hairs I've found since I was 7. Add to that that I have no patience or tolerance for these disrespectful young punks today. Why in my day....(WTF? this practically is my day!) I've been looking to buy one of those granny carts with the handle and the wheels that you can use to tote around groceries, and useless junk. I collect useless junk. My bones get creaky and achy. I have doilies on some of my furniture!

Just call me Granny Dani, I guess. Hey! That rhymes!

Tuesday, September 09, 2003 

I've become increasingly aware of a disturbing trend in our society these days. Despite the seemingly unlimited modes of communication, the ease of movement and travel over short and far distances, and the mass quantities of people inhabiting small areas of land, there are too many lonely people. Occasionally I'll peruse the ads and posts on Craigslist, which is very popular here in the San Francisco area. I've noticed a plethora of posts from people looking for someone to connect with. Some people have recently moved, others have lost touch with other friends over the years, some have worked too hard for too long only to find that when the work slows down, there's nothing left. These aren't low-lifes, freaks, nerds, criminals, or unlikeable people either. They're often people who would make good friends.

I must admit, I find myself in common company with many of these people. After leaving high school, I left behind some of my high school friendships. Not because I didn't care, but because many of those people were moving in a very different direction than I (some were going absolutely no where), and with college starting, it was going to be hard to maintain those friendships. Other friendships just sort of died from neglect - people moved too far away, became too busy, and lost touch. Of course, I never forgot any of those people, or what they meant to me. And some of them I've even recently gotten back in touch with in an effort to rekindle the old friendship, or at least share some old memories. Since I didn't live on or near campus while I was in college (I lived with my parents a few cities away, and commuted to school every day) it made it harder for me to make friends. While most people were forced to meet others in the dorms, I only had my classes. And it wasn't easy meeting people there because there wasn't much time for socializing in class. After two years, I finaly joined a campus club. I met a lot of great people there, and made some new friends. But it was hard to really grow those friendships because I lived so far away. And when I graduated over a year ago, many of those people moved on too. Some people went right into work, some moved back to their parent's house, some went on to grad school elsewhere in the country. I keep in touch with a few of the people on a regular basis, but once again, many of those friendships just drifted apart.

And it's not like I'm not trying. Often I feel like I put more effort into keeping touch with people than other do with me. I'm usually the one to write the email, or make the phone call to see how the person is doing, even when it's been two or three years since we last connected. Sometimes something comes out of it, sometimes it's just nice to catch up. But, I've realized that sometimes old friend's don't have room for you in their lives anymore, and that's why things died in the first place.

But when you lose a number of friends, it leaves you with this empty hole. And filling that void can be difficult, as showcased by the posters on Craigslist who write the equivalent of single's ad's - except that instead of looking for a date, they're looking for a friend. I wonder how successful that is for them.

In a way though, it makes sense. Making friends is a lot like dating. It takes time to get to know a person and decide whether or not they're someone you'd like to keep around. The whole process can be very similar to dating as well - going out to pre-planned events, asking interview type questions, fretting over making the right impresssion. Shouldn't meeting new people be easier than that?

And how bad is it when people feel they have to resort to posting friendship wanted ad's on bulletin boards? It just goes to show how closed people are in real life. You walk down the street and see someone that looks like they'd be interesting to meet, but you can't just go up to them and say "hey, would you like to be my friend?" It's a little easier when you're in a more structured environment, like work, but even that can be tough. Some people can be very closed off in those environments as well. Almost like they're adverse to connecting with new people. Yet, the people who bemoan the fact they have no friends often seem just as closed as everyone else.

Personally, I try to combat it by being open and friendly to everyone. I've met some great people that way - though some of them aren't people I could see myself hanging out with on a Saturday night. But even with that, and making efforts to meet people, it still seems so hard to make new friends. I'm tempted to write to those people in those posts, just to see what comes of it.

It just doesn't seem to make sense that it's so hard to find good friends in a time when meeting people is easier than ever before, and when you're constantly being exposed to new people every day. Yet, many of us walk around in our own closed little worlds, oblivious to what else is out there, and uninspired to test other waters. What are we afraid of? That we might find someone really great? I sure hope that's not it, because it would be a true tragedy to miss the opportunity to make a true friend, which is something everyone needs.

Monday, September 08, 2003 

Happy Monday! Only four more days until Friday...can I last that long?

Before I get started with the rest of my post, here is this week's Knitworthy. It's a pattern for knitted dice ornaments. You could easily knit them with some mohair and make them fuzzy dice. Perhaps make some thin i-cord to tie them together and hang over your rearview mirror (Actually, don't do that. In some places it's illegal to hang things from your rear view mirror. It blocks your full view of the road, which could cause an accident. Hang it somewhere else in your car instead.)

Once again, I didn't do much knitting this weekend. Did take a trip to Ikea on Saturday and picked up a patio set (with my Abercrombie & Fitch settlement check...though, I didn't spend the whole check), some miscellaneous items, and three small rectangular mirrors for my entry way. Hung the mirrors yesterday morning, and it helps add a little light and interest to the entry space. Plus, it's great for being able to get in one last check of how I look before I leave the house. Only bad part is that I get to see, right away, how frazzled I look when I come home. It's like I walk out the door, and into a tornado every morning.

I also hit up a few more thrift stores. At one I found three dining chairs for $5.00 each (marked down from $10.00 each). Then I ran down to the fabric store, picked up some fabric, and reupholstered them when I got home. Now I just need to (at the very least) clean the wood. I may, at some point, sand them and either paint or restain them. But, not right now.

After picking up the dining chairs (which were fun to stuff into my little 1982 Celica), I swung by my parent's house to pick up some mirrored tiles. My dad had built a bar in the family room years ago, and used mirrored tiles to make a mirrored wall behind it. They took down that bar about two years ago, but my mom still had a few of the tiles cluttering up precious room in the garage. So, I did them the favor of taking them off their hands (and they did me the favor of not making me go out and spend $10 for a box of them). I'm going to use a couple of them to tile the backsplash above my stove. The kitchen has no direct lighting, and is kind of small, so I figured making a mirrored backsplash would bring more light into the kitchen (the mirrors will be facing a small window), and add some depth to the kitchen as well. As for the other mirrors, I'm still deciding what to do with them. I may use them for some other crafts as well.

Knitting time is going to become tighter here over the next few months....right in time for the Holiday Season. I start the H&R Block Tax Course tonight, and that will be two 3 hour classes a week, plus anywhere from 3-6 hours of homework a week. Say buh-bye to my free time. I'll probably use what little time I have to make ornaments and Christmas gifts for people. Making stuff for me will either have to get squeezed in when it can, or will have to wait until AFTER Christmas. Sob.

Friday, September 05, 2003 

Not much knitting going on lately. I've been spending most of my time working on my apartment so it doesn't look like an undecorated disaster area when I have the 'rents over for my mom's birthday. Not that they'd think any less of me or anything. But, I've only had a few close friends over in the 7+ months I've been living there, and I'd like to have the place looking good so I can start entertaining. Especially since Christmas is right around the corner.

I have however finished a few mousies. I've gotten three ready for stuffing. I haven't done that many, but they only take me about an hour and a half to finish, so I should be able to get quite a few done. I'd like to have at least 10 to send in to Wendy. I also picked up some little bells to put inside, but I need to test it out first to make sure they'll jingle in there.

I also stopped by the two thrift stores near my complex last night. I picked up a bag of yarn from one. And it was fairly decent stuff -- it didn't smell bad, or look dirty, and the colors were actually useable. Of course, the quantities were small, but you can always find uses for them. I haven't really sat down and sorted through it yet though. At the other store I found two books, titled Stitch By Stitch Volumes 1 & 2 (check out this Ebay auction of the same two books). Not only did they have info on knitting and crocheting, but also on sewing and needlepoint. I wasn't going to buy them, but the store was having a 1/2 off all books sale, and decided that for a total of $1.40, I wasn't losing much if I never used them. They appeared to have some good info on the basics of each of those crafts, including clear illustrations. Plus, there were a few patterns for each craft too. There were only about two or three I might consider making...most looked garishly 80's. Though, if you look at recent fashion magazines, the 80's are making a come back. God forbid. There are just some trends and fads that should never be revived.

Wednesday, September 03, 2003 

We're in the money, come on, my honey,
Let's spend it, lend it, send it rolling along!

I went to pick up some mail from my parents' house last night, and noticed an envelope from Abercrombie & Fitch amongst the bills and junk mail. Almost two years ago I worked there for about 3 or 4 weeks during my Winter Break to make a few extra bucks (of course, they only paid minimum wage - $6.50/hr - which is low by my standards...but I was looking for a different environment than I was used to -- which is offices). I remember A&F had this insane policy while I worked there that you had to wear their clothes. And not only that, but you had to wear current, non-sale items. Out of season/sale items were NOT permitted. They even had rules on the kinds of shoes you could wear (there was this chart in the back of the store with about 2 or 3 dozen "acceptable" shoes), and rules about makeup and accessories as well. Now, I have no problem with having to dress a certain way for a job. But their rules seemed a little oppressive. Especially since they only gave you three items a season (a pair of pants and two tops) at 50% off, and only 30% off any other items you bought. This was made even more ludicrous by the fact that their employees only made minimum wage (or slightly above it), and the clothes weren't exactly cheap. So, it basically seemed that employees spent most of their paychecks on A&F clothes. I mean talk about a purely genius move by A&F. Pay your workers shit, then tell them they have to buy your overpriced clothes or they won't be allowed to work, and then watch as the money you paid out in wages rolls right back into your coffers for your cheap, poorly made clothing.

I left there for a variety of reasons - school was starting, awful pay, promises made during the hiring process by the manager that were not kept, etc. etc. etc. I chalked it up to experience, and moved on with my life. Almost two years later, here comes an envelope from them in the mail. When I opened it I was shocked to see.....

A CHECK FOR $178.32

I instantly remembered hearing about a law suit being brought against A&F for their uniform requirements. Turns out their practices were illegal in the state of California. As a result a $2.2 million settlement was made by A&F, which allowed for the reimbursement of those costs to former employees. Since I happened to work there for a few weeks in December of 2001, I too got a check. In the end, it probably reimbursed me about 3 times as much as what I actually paid, but I feel I deserved it considering the amount of work I did (I worked the front & back of the store keeping the store organized, stocked, etc) and the wages they paid. So, I'll happily waive my rights to file suit on this matter in the future (not like I ever intended to do such a thing anyway), and cash that check.

Now....what to do with all that moola!

Tuesday, September 02, 2003 

Genia of Genia Knits and Rock Chick of Purl Jam have both signed up to be interviewed by Yours Truly. Go check out their sites, and their interviews!!!

And, this week's Knitworthy is....a Smocked Eye Pillow!!!!! Yay! Great to go with the Herbal Neck Warmer. Remember, Christmas is just around the corner, so it's time to get busy making those gifts. These two would certainly make a well received gift for someone special.

Not much knitting got done this weekend. Let's see...I finished two mousies, and strated on a third. Though, I have a feeling the third is going to come out too big, so I'm going to rip it out. Otherwise I spent my weekend doing other stuff. I spent lots of time on Saturday and yesterday with Jon. I'd always pick that over knitting. And Sunday I spent half my day playing The Sims (love tha game!) and the other half of the day cleaning out my spare room/office. Let's just say it became my "dumping ground" when I moved in back in January. I had boxes of stuff stacked in the closet, in the corners, here, there, and everywhere. Then there were mountains of papers to be sorted through -- some to be filed, some to be tossed. Plus, my yarn stash was highly disorganized, swimming in a sea of bags. So far, I've taken care of all the filing/purging, emptied out the boxes, sorted through some stuff to keep/give away, straightened out the bookshelf a little bit, and generally made it look much better than it had. I need some more storage units in my closet in that room to store all of my yarn. Does anyone have any creative ideas for how you store your yarn? Right now it's all heaped up on the floor of one side of the closet.

My mother's birthday is in a week and a half, and I wanted to have her and my dad (and maybe my brother) over for dinner. But, my apartment has hardly been in decent enough condition for serious company (which means that since I moved in last January, I've only had a few people over - my boyfriend, my friend Alicia [and her friend Kristin once] and I think that's about it). So, I've been working my butt off to get it looking good by the 12th. I purchased some curtains for the living room; put the headboard behind my bed (it still needs upholstery tacks); purchased and installed an etagere for my bathroom; built some CD, DVD and VHS holders out of a leftover cardboard box to fit inside the deep, skinny cabinets on my entertainment unit (I was going to buy something but couldn't find anything that would fit AND didn't cost an arm and a leg -- the boxes still need to be covered with either wrapping paper or contact paper so they look a little nicer); and I've started hanging up pictures. There's still a lot that needs to be done, but it's coming along!

About me

  • I'm Dani
  • From San Francisco
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