Enough Ranting

Back to crafting. I signed up for an apron swap a little over a month ago. Of course, I completely forgot about it and the deadline passed about a week ago. I managed to whip something up in a couple of hours which, is a record for me. I usually spend a couple of hours ripping out seams let alone complete anything. The apron is after the jump just in case my swap partner stumbles upon my blog. Don’t peek!

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Appalled

Okay, not so much appalled as surprised. (Al, this is normally your territory) I have been riding my bike in New Haven for a couple of weeks now with no complaints. I’ve gotten nods from motorists and shouts of approval from pedestrians but never have I experienced any hostility. That is, until today. I spent my lunch hour today at the local bicycle shop getting my handle bars adjusted and a rear bike rack put on. While, I was there I picked up a pamphlet titled “Share the Road”. I read it, stuffed it in my backpack and didn’t think much of it….until some rude motorist shouted at me and Conor. We were stopped at a stoplight and a woman pulled up aside us and told us in the most motherly way possible, “You should really ride on the sidewalk because you’re holding up trafffic.” My immediate thought was, “Bitch! I AM traffic!” but of course my sensible side took over and I merely said, “Actually, it is safer for bicyclists to ride on the street, with traffic”. But, of course, she wasn’t having ANY of it. Conor and I continued explaining what the laws actually are but they just kept shouting back at us. Finally, we yelled “YOU SHOULD DO SOME RESEARCH!” and we were met with one special finger. You know the one. The light turns green and VROOOM! they speed off. I’m thinking of keeping those “Share the Road” pamphlets in my back pocket from now on.

I guess it was naive of me to think that I could ride my bike on the streets of New Haven with no complaints. I should have expected this moment sooner or later. Why shouldn’t I have? It’s not their fault they don’t know where cyclists should ride. When I was in driving school, I never had one single thought for bicyclists. I only pictured myself alone in my car, listening to good tunes and just cruising along. Fine, these motorists are ignorant but why shouldn’t they be? I don’t read up on the “Rules of the Road” for fun. So, why should they? The real problem is with the city. Why aren’t there bike lanes? Don’t we even deserve a silly lane with an abstract bike painted on the asphalt? There are no street signs warning of cyclists, just a “No Turn On Red Sign” which, most motorists choose to ignore anyway.

So, the question the comes to mind “Am I upset with the woman for yelling at me?” OR “Am I upset with a society that doesn’t know any better?”

Ravelympics 2 of 2

Clarence

Clarence

Pattern: Sheldon from Knitty

Yarn: Plymouth Wildflower D.K.

Needles: US 3 and 4

Notes: So, this little guy is pretty cute. I like the construction of this toy better than the hippo I just knit. Minimal seaming, no felting and stuff as you knit. Can’t get any better than that. Plymouth Wildflower D.K. is no fun to knit with. It splits like crazy! Never again. Well, maybe it wouldn’t be so bad on US 5’s but never again on 3’s. Also, I really love the applied I-cord technique. I was nervous about it at first but I just dove in and followed the instructions word for word. After a few rows, I understood the concept a lot  better.

Applied I-cord

Applied I-cord

For those of you who don’t know, the Ravelympics is like the Olympics for knitters. Basically, anyone on Ravelry (a social network for knitters) could take on the challenge of completing a project or projects during the 17 days of the 2008 Olympics. There are different events (categories of knit items) you could choose to participate. I chose to participate in “amigurumi toys-n-toss”. I’m glad I decided to participate in the Ravelympics. At first, I thought the idea was silly but it motivated to finally knit some stuffed toys.

Someone went camera happy

Someone went camera happy

Ravelympics 1 of 2

I signed up to knit two stuffed toys for the Ravelympics. I finally finished Tums the Hippo:

Tums the Hippo aka Little H

Hubert

Pattern: Tums the Hippo by Anna Hrachovec

Yarn: Cascade 220

Needle: US 6 dpns

Notes: So, this is not my best work. The seaming is really really awful. I gave up on trying to make it look neat. Hopefully, my strategic photographing hides most of the imperfections. Kind of hard to hide the spaces above the nose though. I thought knitting a stuffed toy would be easy. I was so wrong. I think my hands are still sore from picking up 16 stitches on those tiny pink circles. I’ve really got to hand it to Anna Hrachovec. She is so awesome at designing and making these things.

Next up: Sheldon

Suéter de la señora de febrero

Before I jump into an FO post, I have to tell you about my Tarot Card reading. My new roommate, Devon, is hobby-less (sad, I know). He found that not having a hobby was really bothering him so he decided to go ahead and get one. Instead of just reading about various hobbies and choosing one, he decided he’s going to try a new hobby every month. You can check out his progress here. Anyway, back to Tarot Cards. His first hobby is Tarot Card reading and I got my very first one last night. I asked a fairly typical question about my future financial stability and actually got some pretty good answers. I basically need to learn how to make the right decisions regarding my finances and that I’m probably going to not only make sacrifices, but probably make sacrifices on behalf of others. Pretty scary stuff. I know it sounds like common sense but the cards really all closely related and  focused on balance in decision making. So, check out his blog! Maybe his experiences with these hobbies will turn you on to them.

Next, on the agenda:

Pattern: February Lady Sweater by Flint Knits

Yarn: 3.5 skeins Cascade 220 Heathers

Needles: US 6 circular

Notes: Love this sweater. It’s a simple pattern but the Gull Lace makes it a little interesting. I alway love making top-down raglans because you can try them on in the process of knitting it. Really helps to avoid knitting a complete disaster. I had heard that this sweater grows a bit after blocking so, with that in mind, I knit the length an inch or so shorter than I wanted. I did the same with the sleeves. Now, it fits perfectly. Well, the sleeves didn’t grow as much as I thought they would so I’m considering  a second blocking.

I had a tough time choosing buttons for this thing. I knew I wanted large, important buttons so I checked a few places online, including Etsy but nothing seemed right. I finally caved in and went to Jo-Ann’s and I found these:

I have to say, Jo-Ann’s really surprised me. They don’t usually have an impressive collection of anything but I’m really fond of these. They almost have a vintage look to them.

And finally, one other thing. It took me awhile to write this post after completing the sweater. Usually, I finish something and blog about it the moment it’s finished blocking. I have to blame Ravelry. Once I completed the details on Ravelry, I felt I was finished. Nothing left to do. It didn’t occur to me until a few days later that  I still hadn’t blogged about it. Anyone else have that problem?