Thursday, January 31, 2013

Do you know Conrad Aiken’s short story, “Silent Snow, Secret Snow”? My sister introduced me to it, many years ago. It’s sort of scary. It occurred to me yesterday that old age is like that, like snow filling up the crevices, cutting off the options. I’ve just ordered a copy in a reasonably-priced paperback called “50 Great American Short Stories”. I’ll read it again and report back.

I have dealt with the spam problem, for the moment, inspired by Kristie’s comment yesterday, by taking “word verification” off and putting the whole show on moderation. That will mean a delay between your posting a comment and seeing it published – a fairly brief one, much of the time; longer, during the hours I spend under the duvet. That’s what happened to yours, Nanette. (The grown-up Scotland team is travelling to London today. Our new, Australian temporary head coach is a delight on the television news. I wonder if we will see a difference on the field.)

Spam continues at an inconvenient level. They’re all rather similar – in poor English, expressing admiration for the blog, ending “Feel free to visit my website”. My impression is that no two of the websites are the same. Some sound saucy; most not. There were a lot yesterday on the theme of water damage, rather appropriate around here. Needless to say, I wouldn’t dream of clicking on any of them.

Knitting, miscellaneous

Do we know anything about Bargello Knits? I had an email from the Cooperative Press yesterday (thoroughly in favour of them) about a new book of that name, promising to solve the problem of hand-painted yarns which look stunning in the skein and knit up to something resembling vomit. What was it Kaffe said in that talk I heard him give here in Edinburgh a few weeks ago? It was approximately that rude.

Kate Davies has posted (Jan. 29) an essay about the new book, “A Legacy of Shetland Lace”.

Knitting, actual

I have finished the first shoulder of Ed's Gardening Sweater, cast off half, and am knitting across the back neck to make a shirt yoke. After the catalogue of miscalculations you have heard, you will be glad to learn that I paused at the cast-off point, actually to think.

I had inserted some short rows in the back, way back when. That meant that back and front were distinct from each other. That meant that I had to ascertain which was which before casting off half the shoulder stitches. And I did.

Last night on the One Show – we try to avoid it, but it comes on after the news and sometimes we aren’t adroit enough – a pleasant garden-designer woman said, When you have an idea, draw it.

I thought, that could apply to knitting. So I drew – not a schematic, just a sketch – the tee-shirt-like top I am thinking of instead of the Japanese shirt. It looks great. And – serious confession here – I ordered from Loop some skeins of madelinetosh sock yarn to make stripes with the wonderful stuff I’ve already got.


  1. Anonymous2:57 PM

    I think that is a wonderful tip about making a sketch of the sweater that is in your head. I am going to definitely try it.
    Ron in Mexico

  2. Anonymous3:13 PM

    Hello Jean, I went back to yesterday's comments and saw that you're able to reply to comments now. I remember when that was a desire and a frustration- so, some progress, eh? And re: designing a tee shirt, you go! I know you have the skills and I had been slighly puzzled by your reluctance. Good Knitting. Marilyn from Minneapolis

  3. Spam is the most awful nuisance!
    I now have a copy of A legacy of Shetland Lace. I felt I had to get the book in order to support the people who are trying to keep it alive. There is also an international lace conference coming up here in Adelaide in 2014 and the organisers are looking for Australian examples of Shetland style knitting. Unfortunately I am too lazy to follow other people's patterns!