Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Not much to report, today. I filed the income tax – they say I owe them money. I made a dr's appt for myself, and pursued the question of why the cleaner didn't turn up last Friday. It was only this morning that I grasped that these two achievements overlap – I am to go see the dr early on Friday morning while the cleaner is supposed to be here. I'll have to think about that one. It might be better if she didn't come.

It has been a long time since I went to see a dr for myself, so I just asked to be assigned to anyone in the practice who had a slot free. I have wound up with the nice young man who made the house call to see my husband a fortnight ago, so that's good. I am now watching myself anxiously for fear of feeling so much better by Friday that there's no point in going.

34 scallops done on the third side, edging the Unst Bridal Shawl. The first ball of yarn obstinately refused to expire yesterday, but I don't think it can hold out much longer.

Last night we watched the Coen brothers' “A Serious Man”. We had seen it in the cinema when it came out, and I was eager to see it again. I didn't knit a stitch. I was struck with how economical it is, as so often with a good film. The effects I remembered so vividly – the unctiousness of the dreadful Sy Lieberman, for instance – were conveyed with far less screen time than I would have thought possible.

I still don't see the relevance of the prologue, involving the appearance of a dybbuk in the snow in eastern Europe somewhere. Life is absurd, and tilted against us? The film itself could well be viewed as a retelling of the Book of Job.

I was puzzled the first time I saw it by the word “hashem” which several characters use, referring (clearly) to God. That first time, I had forgotten the problem by the time we got back. Yesterday, at home with my iPad, I looked it up. It means “the name” and Jews use it to avoid using the Name of God in speech. (Everybody in the film is Jewish except for a sinister next-door-neighbour. At the end, after the credits, there is a little Coen-brothers disclaimer: “No Jews were harmed in the making of this film”.)

Catch it if you can.

It is nearly time to think of ordering long rosewood circulars for knitting the body of the Unst Bridal Shawl. Sharon Miller seems to think that 24” is all that is required, and I think EZ says somewhere that that is the only size you'll ever need. I would have thought something a bit longer might be useful when you've got the whole circumference to deal with.


  1. rosesmama10:11 AM

    Yes, I think that, in the interest of stretching out your work to read it and catch mistakes, a longer needle would be useful.

    Congratulations on finishing the taxes. That is always a relief..

  2. I often think of EZ writing that 24" is the only size you'll ever need when I plunk down money for a 32" or 40" needle. I also seem to remember her giving tips for keeping all those sts stuffed on the needle when necessary. A rubber band around the body? Something like that. The right size needles make it more relaxing. Go ahead and order them. Order them all, what the heck.

  3. Anonymous6:25 PM

    I understood the prologue about the dybbuk as explaining the curse on the Serious Man.

    Kate in IL

  4. Ellen9:28 PM

    The movie was filmed in Minneapolis, my (adopted) home town, as well as the hometown of the Coens. Many of the characters, especially the small roles were based on people in their own lives, and some of them actually played themselves. It was filmed in neighborhoods all over town, and so we often ran into them shooting. A very funny article was written by one of the extras about her experience dressing in the clothes of the era. They were all sent home with instructions for setting their hair in pin curls and rollers, and the women had to wear the old style cotton bras and panty girdles or foundation garments with those awful snap suspenders that held up your stockings, Some things HAVE gotten better since the old days.
    EZ was very spartan; get a 40 " needle for now, and switch to a smaller one as you progress inward. It's not fun if you can't stretch out your work and admire it!