Wednesday, May 04, 2011

We’re back, at least for a while. Exhausted to the core. Got a lot done, much remains to be accomplished.

Anonymous, you struck a nerve with your comment. What I meant by “exercise my husband’s franchise” was that he must vote tomorrow, both on the question of whether Britain wants to switch to a system which allows the voter to list second, third, and however-many choices; and on seats in the Scottish parliament. I’m not British so I’m not involved.

The Oxford dictionary defines at least one of the meanings of “franchise” as “the right or privilege of voting at public elections”, derived from the Old French. My tendency to express in Old French or Latin, what might have been said in Anglo Saxon – “he’s got to vote tomorrow” – is one of the many things that annoyed C. about me. The last words she spoke to me on earth were, “I don’t understand”, although all she meant that time, I think, is that I had turned up unexpectedly at her bedside when she thought my husband had made the trip to visit her that day by himself.

Lady Macbeth switches elegantly between the two modes of speech:

“…this my hand
Will rather the multitudinous seas incarnadine,
Making the green one red.”

Where to turn from here? Knitting? Vegetables? Knitting.

That rustic computer really isn’t up to the job. There I was at 8pm on Sunday, logged on, fingers poised over the keyboard, ready for Knit Nation registration to go live. I struggled for an hour, and failed. I started again first thing on Monday morning. That time I got all the way to the final hurdle after much further struggle, sun pouring in the window all the while, inviting me out to my vegetables. But then my credit card was rejected, and the “Try Again” button didn’t work.

I sent Rachel a mournful email (the computer will do at least that), as her children would be needed to keep my husband company while I waltzed off that weekend in July. She rang up and said, why don’t I do it on my computer? So we did it that way, and it all went through rapidly and smoothly (including my credit card number) – but it was already too late to get into Franklin’s “photographing your fabric” class on the Sunday morning. I’m on the waiting list.

One serious problem has at least been solved. I am going to meet one of you tomorrow at K1 Yarns for I guess what might be called a Yarn Crawl, although there’s nowhere else to go but there, and then lunch. Can one possibly not buy yarn, on such an occasion? Ahah! I can buy what will be needed for the classes I have signed up for – Franklin’s Tomten class, and a Travelling Stitch class on Sunday afternoon although I probably won’t go to that if I can’t get a place on “Photographing Your Fabric”.

Much else to say, including some breathtaking pictures of vegetables growing and not-growing. But that’s enough for now.


  1. Go for proportional representation! Where I grew up in Cincinnati, we had PR for city council elections. It was the only way to preserve a third party and kept the republicans and democrats honest. Cincinnati had a black mayor in the '50s (from the Charter Party) It otherwise couldn't have happened in a city that segregated back then.

    In the Clinton administration the President wanted to appoint a progressive black woman to the post of Attorney General. The nomination was withdrawn because her advocacy of PR was considered "un-american". My, my.

  2. Ruth in Ottawa2:04 PM

    Hi Jean,

    I'm another Canadian, and I knew what you meant by exercising one's franchise - for whatever that's worth!

  3. kristie2:24 PM

    Our province, British Columbia, attempted to put through that style of voting. In the end everyone was so confused about how it would work it got voted down. We were all understandably reluctant to vote in a system the government couldn't explain. And C. might have complained about not understanding you, but one of the many things I enjoy about your blog is how it expands my vocabulary. I don't have to sign up for a "word of the day" to come to my inbox. I just read Jean's Knitting. :-)

    I was surprised to read that you don't have British citizenship. Is it not possible to hold both US and British?

    I hope Franklin reads your blog and gives you permission to slip into his class!

  4. Sorry to leave a second comment but there was no way to fix the last one. For some odd reason the comment went through before it filled in my whole user name.

  5. You know my mom has never gotten the hang of the computer- she has an IPad and uses it to browse the web, to read and watch stuff but when it comes to ordering stuff she is at a loss. So usually she calls me up, tells me what she wants, gives me her CC number and has me order it for her. Works fine that way... until she is buying me something for my birthday or for Christmas. Then she has to rustle up my nephew who lives with her and make him order it and he is less patient about the whole thing (he is also 16, so they tend to be more impatient at that age.)

  6. Anonymous1:41 AM

    Thank you for explaining that. I say that it is time to vote. The next time that an election rolls around, I think I shall say that I am about to exercise my franchise.


  7. I agree with kristinbc. I appreciate your "phraseology" - I always learn something new when reading your blog.

    That word is from one of my favorite musicals, The Music Man. Mayor Shinn is constantly telling his daughter, "You watch your phraseology!"