Saturday, February 02, 2013

Calcutta Cup (and Groundhog) Day

The sun is shining brightly, here in Edinburgh.

Those young men down in London are getting up around now, eating their healthy breakfasts, setting out towards Twickenham, without a thought, any of them, for the fact that what they do or don’t do this afternoon will affect my knitting for much of the rest of the year.

Scotland last won the Calcutta Cup in London 30 years ago. I was pleased to see in the Scotsman yesterday that that entire team will be there again today. They must be men in their 50’s, there’s no reason they shouldn’t all be there, but death is cruel and capricious as we all know.

The spam was much diminished yesterday – about 15 in all, and many of those were the familiar attacks on very old posts. Today I’ll count how many come in specifically for this message – those are the ones I worry about; the older ones are moderated anyway. I notice that the Socklady is suffering, and I know that Kristie is. Perhaps this is a concerted assault on anyone who blogs with Blogger?

The sad thing, yesterday, was not hearing from any of you guys.

If, by any chance, Scotland should lose today, my future is bright. I got the package from Loop yesterday – here is my striped tee-shirt:

Photography can but hint, of course, at the beauty of these yarns. The dark yarn is “Cosmos”, the light one, “Calligraphy”. “Cosmos” is/was the yarn for the Japanese shirt. Loop has an excellent selection of madelinetosh sock, and I considered striping it with one of the reds or a bold lime green. I’m very glad I chose as I did – sub fusc is essentially me, I feel. Perhaps I mean, I am essentially sub fusc.

As for actual knitting, I finished the second shoulder of Ed’s Gardening Sweater. Now I need to cast off half of it and graft the other half to the live stitches from the other shoulder and then pick up stitches for the neck ribbing. This is not the sort of assignment one wants for Calcutta Cup Day. Semi-mindless, as for the Australian Open Tennis recently when I was knitting the yoke, is what is required.

And I can’t even fall back on a sock, because of the difficulties mentioned yesterday.

And what do I do if Scotland should, per impossibile, win? I will need to design three sweaters (Archie and the Little Boys over there in the west) and order yarn and wait for it to arrive. No, that’s all right – I can fill the interval by trying to recover my sock-knitting skills, such as they were, from last year.


  1. Sub-fusc? Somehow that reminds me of my late great-aunt. When she needed a new winter frock my mother said she would make it. I went with my aunt to buy the fabric. We came back with bright red coin spotted Viyella - for a woman of almost 90. My mother duly made it up and she looked magnificent in it.
    Are you sure you don't want to sneak in a bright stripe somewhere? :)

  2. Sub fusc may be easier to wear, but there are still some long dark days to go. Knitting in subdued colours can be more lowering to the mood. Perhaps you could swatch a very narrow stripe of an accent colour between the two more muted tones?
    Re spam: I had some recently and would have preferred a straight advert. It was the creepy wording I hated: "I like your blog. Why not visit mine - Short-term"

  3. Dear Jean
    Re no comments yesterday, I tend to comment when I have something useful to add to the conversation. Sometimes I feel a little guilty for not commenting more because I enjoy your blog and also the comments on your blog. Each day I click on your site, I read all the comments from the day before before reading your current post. I certainly don't read the comments on all the blogs I visit, but as I said above, it is like being part of a conversation.
    Regarding the rugby, take something from stash and start a simple scarf or hat, you can frog it later if you dont like it.
    Enjoy the match!
    Dawn in NL

  4. Anonymous1:09 PM

    Except for the final grafting, this is a simple, mindless pattern and the resulting item does a magnificent job of keeping the ears (or, pulled down further, the neck) warm:
    For more of a challenge, you could even knit it with finer gauge yarn & smaller-sized needles!
    I don't pertsonally care for rugby (heresy, I know) but will cast my lot with Scotland on the off chance it might make a positive difference. Good luck!

  5. Anonymous1:38 PM

    Hi, Jean,
    Congratulations on Comments return, making your editorial work easier. More time for posting. Good luck with all your knitting and planning since I always enjoy your adventures.
    The new yarns are lovely; that Loop is so near is a mixed blessing.
    Greetings from a cold Toronto -15C with the wind chill: brrrrrrrrrrrrr

    China Doll 003

  6. I did a little research yesterday. Apparently spammers have found away around Google's filters and many bloggers are suffering. Have you tried contacting Google. I work under the theory that the more squeaky wheels the faster the fix.

  7. "I hope your team wins, Lady." that was some sort of a joke punch line my parents used, and it came to mind as I started to type. Wordpress seems to be very god at catching spam, but I'm sure it's time will come, as well.

  8. Anonymous2:32 PM

    Best of luck on the Cup!

    I, too, am concerned about grey on grey in the winter. I liked the suggestion made to put in a narrow stripe of colour in-between.

  9. My thanks to Theresa for researching this. I had suspected this was the case with the spam. Hopefully Blogger will get on top of it shortly.

    Isn't it amazing that no matter how much yarn we buy, there is still that thrill when a new parcel arrives with more?

    I will be checking the sports results online later today. I still think the newspaper should do a story on your Calcutta Cup knitting projects!

  10. Hello Jean, catmum waving from the foggy (my favorite kind of day!) left coast of the US. One of the high points of every morning is reading your blog post in my google reader.

  11. I've never watched a rugby match. I only know that the local women's team wanted my daughter because she was small enough to throw. After a few games with extreme bruising she decided it was fun but not for her.

    Looks like a very nice top, too. I am tempted.

  12. skeindalous10:00 PM

    No doubt, should Scotland win the Cup you will rise to the occasion with grace and style! It will be great fun to watch you plan and plot and finally knit.

  13. csj04232:52 AM

    So sorry the Scotland team lost the match. That said, it does relieve you of a significant amount of ordering and knitting for your clan - aside from the knitting you do anyway.

  14. =Tamar2:27 AM

    Shandy - when discussing spam, it is bad form to quote the actual spam site. Substituting something like "$obviously commercial website" will give the idea.

  15. Am catching up on my blogs and have to agree with Dawn in NL - yours is the only blog whose comments I read faithfully. Your readers are amazing, like you. I always learn something when reading each post and comments.