Wednesday, April 29, 2009

"All this has happened before. All this will happen again."

If you've hung around me recently you may have become aware that I'm a fan of Battlestar Galactica (BSG from here on out) and I recently caught up to the rest of the geeks and finished the series. I'm not going to talk about how I felt about the ending here, let's just say I wasn't as thrilled as I expected to be. What I am going to talk about is how it seems I can't not have a tv show to obsess over.

I have never had cable outside of my parents house. In college I didn't even own my own tv. These days I do have a tv and dvd player, but no channels. This will change soon but for now it means that I watch tv shows online, on dvd, or at my boyfriend's place. This is why I was behind on BSG. It's also why I lost touch with my favorite show of all time, though I'm slowly building my GG library (though I have already watched them all multiple times online). And, most noteably for this post, it's why I never started watching Lost. Until now.

The thing about BSG is that it consistently blew my mind and had such amazing cliff-hangers that I couldn't wait to start the next episode. And since I was watching them on dvd, so long as I had the next disc, I didn't have to. I even upped my Netflix account from two-at-a-time to three-at-a-time so I never had to wait. And once I finished everything that had been released on dvd, I promptly bought the rest of the series on iTunes. I dreamed scenes from it, I related everyday situations to it, I thought about it non-stop when I wasn't parked on my couch actually watching it.

You might imagine this left a pretty big void in my life once I got to the end of it. And you'd be right. Enter Lost. My boyfriend is a big fan, as is one of our mutual friends who was also into BSG (not to mention the rest of the country). I tried hard to wait. I knew I'd like it once I started it, but I also knew it'd probably be healthier if I gave myself a break from addictive tv. Alas, my boyfriend is a total enabler and borrowed the whole first season from a friend for me. I'm 7 episodes in and all I could think of at work today is how long I had to wait before I could get back to it again.

*The title of this post, of course, is a majorly repeated quote from BSG that creator Ron Moore stole from Peter Pan. And it makes me wonder, what show will I watch obsessively after I catch up with Lost? Will I ever just watch a show as it airs? Would that be as satisfying? Who the heck knows...

Sunday, April 26, 2009

OMG so embarrassing

I was in Target the other day shopping for a friend's bridal shower. It was a little last minute, too late to order something online and have it shipped, and there was nothing left on the registry that was actually in the store that I could afford. So I decided to go "off registry" and get some cute undies and a gift card. That's the great thing about Target, you can get kitchen supplies, games, groceries, and thongs!

That's also the horrible thing about Target. A guy I met once or twice happened to cross my path as I walked up to the register and caught my eye just long enough to recognize that we knew each other. But I just blew by him as fast as I could, no way was I going to do the "Oh hey you're so and so who was at so and so's party a couple weeks ago" while holding a handful of panties!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

I know I'm making a bigger deal out of this than I need to

Soooo.... I didn't tell anybody about this blog for a while cause I wasn't sure I wanted to. But now I do so it's time to do an intro post. You know, one that's a little more insightful than this.

On "Foggy Outlet":
The day I created this blog address it was a very foggy morning. I LOVE foggy mornings in WV, it reminds me of being a kid and walking to school when it was so foggy you couldn't see the end of the block. And then it all burns off into a gorgeous sunshiney day (hopefully). I like how there's a fog line too. Up at my parents' house it won't be foggy, but as you drive down into town there's a specific point as you go down the hill closer to the river where the fog starts. It's cool. But I also like "foggy" cause I don't really have a plan here. I've posted about knitting and crocheting, dreams, and weird stuff that makes me laugh. Whatever's in my head. And that's how it'll likely continue.

And obviously, it's an outlet. I'm blogging for the same reasons any random person might blog: it's cheaper than therapy (but not necessarily as effective), I'm bored, I think I might have something to say, I want to do something creative. I found myself reading a couple of artsy/folksy/diy type blogs and feeling a particularly nasty kind of jealousy. As I processed it out with B (she's also cheaper than therapy and at least, if not more, effective) I realized that I was having such a strong reaction cause I wanted to be doing what they're doing. And you know what? I'm never going to be a renown writer, or a professional artist, or even a particularly stylish dresser. But dammit I want to do something creative. B suggested I start a blog. I balked at first, but here it is.

On my blogging history:
This is actually my fourth blogspot address. They're all gone now so I won't bother telling you what they were. The first one was much like this one, I'd blog about whatever was in my head and all my friends read it and occasionally left comments. It was a happy little place. Then months after my ex moved out I discovered he was still reading my blog. This made me feel very weird and I didn't like it. Plus I didn't have a whole lot of non-depressing things to say at that point and I wasn't updating very often. So I deleted it.

The second one was a super short lived "I'm going to have fun now goddamit and I don't care what you think" angry kind of thing and I managed to offend B in the very first post. She called me on trying to cop a bad girl identity that wasn't really me (which she was right about). But I didn't like her critique so I deleted that one too.

Then I started a third blog that I didn't tell her about so I could further explore trying to be a bad girl without her input. But it's not very fun writing about being a bad girl when no one is reading. And truth be told, at the bottom of it I'm just not that much of a bad girl. So I deleted that one too.

That was all a while ago and I sort of swore off blogging. I thought the world had enough random bloggers, surely I didn't have anything to contribute that would be worthwhile. But screw that, it's not like I'm wasting paper with this. And it's a way that I'm putting myself out there. I'll definitely show off more knitting and crocheting, maybe some sketches, maybe some poetry. Or maybe it will only be more YouTube videos. But it will be videos that reflect parts of my personality, so that's something.

On having an audience:
I'm going to do my darnedest to genuinely not care what any of you think. I mean that in the best way, I want to do this first for me. I have this tendency towards perfectionism, and if I start to feel like I'm doing something "wrong" I will very quickly spiral down and want to delete this blog too. I want to avoid that so I'm going to try and practice not caring if you don't like it. Conversely, I will be grateful for any kind words you may have for me here, but I'm going to try and practice doing it first because I want to.

For that reason I'm not putting a site meter here. I don't want to know how much traffic I get, or what city my readers live in. If my ex happens to find it, I don't want to know. If no one stops by for three whole weeks, I don't want to know. If it blows up and I have tons of readers, I don't want to know.

So there's my very wordy intro. Sometimes I just have to say things aloud (or, ya know, type them) to give myself permission. Hopefully no more disclaimers or justifications after this.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Get outta my dreams, get into my car

I used to be really into dream interpretation. Not so much lately, but I still like it when I have an interesting dream. The other night I dreamed I was in my car and I shifted from park to drive. As far as dream symbolism goes, transportation of any kind is pretty cool. Driving yourself is cooler. And the car in my dream was my real-life car, my little Ford Focus! Not just some generic dream car. Any time there's ever been a car in my dreams before it's been some random car made up by my subconscious. Obviously the action is significant, shifting into Drive like that. Overall I think this dream is a very good sign.

And since it was so realistic, I can recreate it for you now!

Here's what my dream looked like. I shifted from Park:

to Drive:

It's like you're inside my dream! Dream-blog-vision!

And cause I can't leave well enough alone:

More to laugh/cry about

Just sitting here in my office, clicking around when I found this. Had to shut my door so I could laugh myself into tears without gaining an audience.

Maybe I just have a scatological/bodily humor issue?

Monday, April 20, 2009

Why you shouldn't take me anywhere

I have this issue that occasionally embarrasses me in public. Sometimes, I don't know why, funny things will randomly hit me in that laugh-so-hard-you-cry kind of way. I don't think there's anything wrong with that in and of itself, I quite enjoy laughing that hard. If I'm by myself, no problem. If everyone else is laughing that hard, no problem. But not infrequently it happens to me and nobody else. It's so embarrassing.

Like the other night I was hanging out at a restaurant with a group of people that included a couple and their little baby. The baby got passed to one of my friends and all was well and good and cute. Then my friend casually took a swig from his beer bottle, set it back down, and looked a little alarmed and used his sleeve to wipe off the top of the baby's head. Me and one other person saw this and while she definitely laughed, I couldn't stop laughing and had to forcibly choke down the rest of my laughter. I also couldn't look at that friend holding the baby for a good 10 minutes before I finally really calmed down.

Also recently, I was recounting to a friend the scene from The Wedding Singer where Drew Barrymore's character gets drunk in a bar and pukes. She comes out from the bathroom and says to Adam Sandler's character, "I vomited in my hair. Does my hair smell like vomit?" For whatever reason, I could not say those lines without laughing. Particularly the word "vomited." Even now I just said it aloud to myself and it's making me laugh. I can't tell you why it's so funny.

One time a few years back, I was hanging out with friends at someone's apartment and one of the guys was talking about his recent trip to NYC. He mentioned going to a concert and another friend, who happens to be Australian, asked "Oh, was it a pianist?" And I knew what he said, but I couldn't help hearing something else, and it just made me giggle. A couple of other people giggled too, but while they all stopped giggling, I couldn't stop.

I know that I get this from my mom. It happens to her too. But the great thing is that if it happens to her while I'm around (or vice versa) I start laughing uncontrollably just because she is. And then she starts laughing harder because I'm laughing too and we just lose it completely. This is great because it's not embarrassing when it's not just me. Instead, it feels like we have some completely hilarious inside joke that no one else gets. Though even still, sometimes she calms down way before I do.

Just for the sake of another example, this video always makes me laugh that hard:

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Crochet Rug 2.0

So I started over with just the t-shirts and I'm much happier. My camera still sucks though. Oh well. I fix as much as I can but there's only so much you can do with a crappy shot.

It's so much thicker and wider and better. I'm 10 shirts into it here and I've got 10 more that I've pulled out to use. We'll see how far that gets me.

I'm most excited about that dark pink shirt there. The color doesn't exactly come out here, it's more vibrant than it looks in this picture.

The only part I'm displeased with is how big the holes are in that white section above the purple. I may cut a strip just to weave through there to fill it in. I'm not feeling that particular about being able to see the stitches here, I just want it to be squashy and comfy under my feet.

Friday, April 17, 2009

A year ago today...

I was living in Cambridge, MA. I was working full time but I took that day off. I woke up without an alarm and got ready. Got some coffee and a bite to eat at the cafe and hopped on a bus to East Cambridge. I went into the courthouse there, the second time I'd had occasion to visit. I paid some nominal fee and got the official decree with the raised seal. I got back on the bus to Davis Square and I went to the Social Security office, took a number and filled out the paperwork. Showed them the official decree and they said, "Yes of course you can have your name back, paperwork looks good, have a nice day." Then I went back home to show my roomie. She was pleased. I was pleased too.

I am living in Morgantown, WV. I work full time but today I got to leave a little early. I woke up late, grabbed some fruit for breakfast and hopped in my car to go to the office. I came home for lunch and made myself french toast. Went back to the office to wait out the afternoon till my boss said "Yeah of course you can take off, nothing's going on here, have a nice weekend." Went to the grocery store. Now I'm sitting here, having a little glass of white wine and feeling pleased.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Crochet Rug Update

In a previous post I alluded to needing advice on the crochet rug. "Needing advice" - at least in knitting circles - is usually code for "I hate this now but I've spent so much time on it I can't bear to redo it and I'm so emotionally invested now I can't make a rational decision." I didn't really need advice, I needed to acknowledge that this simply wasn't going to be a perfect start to finish project.

You can see here how I started adding t-shirts to the end where I ran out of sheet. What's not completely apparent from the picture is how much thicker the t-shirt section is. I should have realized this before hand, although I cut the t-shirt strips to about the same width, the fabric is much thicker than the sheet. So the rug got much thicker in the t-shirt section than the sheet section. I stood on it several times to test, it was clear that was going to annoy me if I kept going this way.

What also started happening is the t-shirt rows were noticeably (to me) wider than the rest of it too. What to do? I loved making the part with the sheet so much cause it went so quickly and smoothly and it was my first real crochet project. But as I fixated on the thicker t-shirt section, I realized I liked that section better. The holes in the first part of the rug suddenly seemed so big and weird, I think the hook I'm using (size Q) was too big for that part.

So I tried think of ways to save it without undoing it, but deep down in my heart I knew what I needed to do. I just had to take the time to come to grips with it. I unraveled the t-shirts, vowed to figure out what to do with the sheet part later, then started again with an all t-shirt rug. I'm about 8 t-shirts into it (but no pictures yet) and I'm not sure I have enough shirts that I'm willing to cut up on hand to finish it, but I'll find them somewhere. I decided to make the whole thing wider too, I really want this baby to cover up some serious real estate on my gross linoleum kitchen floor. And I'm much happier with how it's progressing now. Pictures of Crochet Rug 2.0 to come. In the meantime, here's some gratuitous cat pictures.

Mindy is unimpressed with the whole thing.

But she does like the hook. It's too bad she doesn't have thumbs or she might have actually been able to get it. Mork is in the back marveling at how much my cheap little camera sucks. Why is the only part in focus that little bit way on the right side?

I have a cat named Mork. Mork has a cat named Mindy.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Amazon Rank: Behold the power of the internet

I think stuff like this is really cool.

Amazon Rank

As if I needed another reason to love Smart Bitches, Trashy Books, they've done this in honor of the Amazon debacle involving stripping sales ranks from books with "questionable content." Here's a couple of updates on Amazon's response.

SBTB was actually how I first found out about Flight of the Conchords and I have enjoyed many a laugh since then. About a year and a half ago, a co-worker pointed out the Smart Bitches blog to me and on the day that I clicked over to their site they had fatefully posted the "Business Time" video. I laughed so hard I disrupted work for an entire morning. Though I am not a romance reader per se, I really enjoy how much they enjoy the genre. And the cover snark is hilarious and awesome.

In honor of SBTB and the genius of the Amazon Rank Google bomb, and how much I like Flight of the Conchords, and my previous history of posting lots of YouTube videos on my blog, I leave you with this oldie but goodie:

That's why they're called business socks.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

I feel fat... Gonna try to sleep it off

I've talked about my scale before. I dislike how much I weigh. And it's not just the number, I dislike how I feel in my jeans (and these are jeans that I bought last summer because I was feeling fat in the jeans I had before that) and my arms are getting flabbier and my waist is getting thicker. And I ate three doughnuts at work today.

My new year's resolution was to either get down to 130 pounds - or, if I fail at that, resolve to stop caring about my weight forevermore. So far this year I've put on about 6 pounds. hmmm.

I've tried different stuff and usually something works for as long as I can stand to stick with it. The Sonoma Diet worked well for me but I lost so much so quick right in the beginning (5 pounds in 5 days) that I freaked out and stopped doing it all together. And it made me a little crazy about my food: I almost started crying once because my mom made something for dinner that involved white flour and I didn't want to offend her so I ate it. I almost started crying about eating a refined grain. I become an emotional cripple when it comes to diets that scare you into eating healthy.

And that seems to be the major issue for me, I don't want to do something that makes me mad at food. Or guilty about food. Or scared about food. I have too much inclination to go off the deep end with it.

B posted this about a picture food diary. I've done food diaries before, but it's the same guilt/anger issue for me. I don't want to be shamed into eating less. I do like the idea of using pictures more than just writing it down, cause then maybe you're more inclined to see patterns, and you're doing the recording before you do the consuming... But still.

Then I read this and I'm so all over it. Sleep more and lose 10 pounds? Sounds perfect. I need to lose more than that to get to 130 but still, it's a hell of a start. And I love sleeping. I was already thinking about how I wished I got more sleep more consistently. So I'm going to try it and I'll let you know how it goes. =)

Crochet rug update later. I've hit a decision point and I'm in need of advice. I'll post about it when I have access to the pictures on my camera.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Almost finished before I even blogged about starting it

I didn't go to church today, a fact about which my grandmother had uncharacteristically non-passive, yet still aggressive, things to say. Instead of church, I listened to my heathen boyfriend play Phish bootlegs on the college radio station while I drank tea and started making this:

The sheet I'm using is a batik style print that I used to individualize my bland as bland can be comforter freshman year of college. Over the years it's gotten worn thin in places and the cats have clawed holes through it. So now I'm excited to give it a new life. I cut it into a long continuous strip about an inch and a half wide.

The rug is 20 stitches across and I'm just going to keep going till I think it's long enough. It's already more than twice as long now than it was this afternoon when I took these pictures. But my camera battery is low and I don't have any more lovely sunshine coming in my bedroom window so I may just wait to stage another photo shoot once it's done.

I think I'll have to cut more rag strips to get the length I'm looking for, not sure how that will look with so much of this patterned sheet. But I'll cross that bridge when I come to it, I do have a lot of t-shirts in colors that would look interesting striped on the end. Or I may expand it by doing denim around the edges. We'll see.

I'm pleased to have such a successful project to post about after the last post of failure. Happy Easter to all the other pagans out there! I had a lovely day despite the fact that I'm going to hell.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

When do I just give up on this yarn?

I really wanted to make this adorable little capelet/cropped cardigan thing that I found randomly clicking through knitting blogs. I even happened to have two leftover balls of Rowan Polar (the now discontinued yarn that this pattern originally used) that I bought along time ago for a different, and also ultimately failed, shrug/cardigan thing. She only uses 1 1/2 so I thought I'd be able to motor along just fine and wind up with a cute little thing without spending any money.

Now, I should have known better. I've knitted long enough to buy into the superstition of the craft. I originally bought this yarn for the Hot Lava cardigan but I ran out and some wonky things had happened along the way that I don't even remember now so I decided to rip it. Of course when I did that it stuck to itself and got kinky and weird so I threw it in a basket without even winding it. Then I found the kitty pi and figured some frogged yarn that had practically felted itself already would be perfect. I knit it up, felted and blocked it, but I quickly realized that the increases that I had ad libbed to try and accommodate my two cats were deeply flawed. And to this day no amount of catnip will get either of my kitties into the pi. They hate it. Since you can't frog a felted project that left me with just two skeins. I was going to make a hat, but I don't really like wearing hats all that much so I never got the mojo for it.

Then I saw that little capelet and thought it would be perfect. The major problem here is that while my neck is skinny like the blogger who designed it, we have vastly different proportions below the neck. I knit it to just below the underarms and I've only got a few yards left. I think it'd take at least another skein if not more to get this thing to cover my boobs. And even then I don't think the shape would wind up very flattering. I could make a smaller version and foist it on my friend's 8-year old daughter. But even if I managed to crank it out in her size without screwing up, I'd be paranoid about giving her bad luck via this yarn that been involved in so many failed projects.

So when do I give into my suspicion that anything I try with this yarn is doomed? Maybe I'll just knit a big stockinette rectangle for a felted bag. Hard to mess that up.

B, do you like how I keep writing posts like anyone might be reading when really it's only you?

I hate snow.

Say what you will: it's pretty, it's romantic, it's fun to play in. But whatever, I'm so over snow. We had freak snow showers last night and predicted again tonight and it just makes me want to curl up and die. It's definitely better here than Boston (except for the past 24 hours) but still. I really think I could live somewhere that it never snowed and I'd be a better person for it.

This morning I went out to my car (after procrastinating about leaving for work for as long as possible). I opened the door and slid halfway in to turn on the car to warm up while I cleared off the snow. Of course since it was rainy and gross last night, I had left the windshield wipers on without realizing it. They kicked on and promptly dumped a windshield's worth of heavy wet snow on my leg. Official sucky start to a sucky day. If it had been sunny like this weekend I'd be singing and dancing around the office right now. I would. I swear. I hate snow.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Want to make it, can't decide how

For a while I've wanted to make a t-shirt rug like this. I have this problem where I can't seem to live without at least four Old Navy Perfect Tees (currently I'm into the v-neck version) in my wardrobe at any given time. But as t-shirts are wont to do they stretch out over time and become unflattering to my figure. As I am wont to do I save the ones that don't fit. My mom sews a lot (well she did when I was little) and I used to make her remake my old clothes into other stuff, all hippy style. I've always wanted to be more crafty, but I've never really gotten into sewing. So I have just saved all these old t-shirts, meaning to repurpose them but not knowing how. Then I saw that rug idea and it was perfect. (I've been knitting for a little over two years.)

But then when I went searching for the knitted rug blog post to link to, I found this and this and now I think maybe I want to crochet it instead. I think I know how to crochet enough to pull it off (and if I don't, I already have this to help me) and the only new thing I'd have to buy is the fatty hook. I like the idea of crocheting such a heavy and thick project cause I feel like my wrists would start to hurt knitting it. And I can make it as wide as I want without having to buy a size 19, 46" circular.

B, if you're reading this, what do you think?

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Thinner - or - How my scale ironically scares me into eating

I have a bad habit of weighing myself every morning. When I'm standing on the scale, I'm focused on the number (and it never makes me happy which is why I consider it a bad habit). But when I'm in there doin my business (what kind of blog is this!??!) sometimes I look over at the scale on the floor. The brand name is Thinner, which I kind of have issues with. Why can't the name be something that invokes the idea of being healthy, not just thinner? The font actually gets skinnier over the word too. The T is nice and thick and the R is all slim and withered away. Kinda weird.

But the real issue here is that it always reminds me of "Thinner": the only Stephen King movie I have watched other than "Carrie". (Has anyone not seen "Carrie"? I had to read the book for a Women's Studies class in college and it was super interesting. Freaked me out for sure, but it made for a great class discussion.) In "Thinner," A kind of douchey overweight dude does something kind of douchey to a gypsy family and gets cursed to keep losing weight. So he keeps losing weight till he looks like a shrunken head. I don't remember how it ends. Oddly I saw this in the theater when it came out, not on VHS at some torturous bad-movie-watching-party (which is a theme that has cropped up in multiple circles of friends of mine). This theater to be precise. At least I didn't pay much for it.

So now when I look at my scale I think about how much I don't want to look like a shrunken head and then I go eat a lot.