Sunday, March 11, 2012

Bench Racing (and a whole lot more)

Last weekend, Paul and I went to an auction at a car repair business in Cooperstown.  He was looking for some ..... car repair stuff.  We had to stand, since it was a full house, for two hours as they went through the list of 400 items.  FOUR. HUNDRED.  Paul was watching for several items on the list but was most interested in the car lifts listed as number 200-something.

Here we are at #67:
You can imagine this was incredibly boring riveting, so the only natural thing to do was:
I worked on my much-neglected, but very simple (garter stitch) fireplace rug.  I made this with two strands of Debbie Bliss Eco Cotton (aran weight) with a size 9 needle, to make a nice, dense fabric.  It now sits in front of the fireplace to catch the wood bits and stray embers.
(with permanent fixture, Phoebe)
It's pretty bland and boring, but functional.

But, while we were in Cooperstown (with nothing in tow from the auction), we had to stop at Sal's for pizza and the lake for a pretty view:
And on the way home we saw this along Route 20:
It's always so odd to see an Amish buggy on the road.  I can only imagine how they feel.

So, as a result of standing up for two hours with a knitting bag on my shoulder, and knitting for two hours (a physical therapist's nightmare scenario), I not surprisingly ended up with some sciatic pain.  Love that. (not)  In addition, I caught Paul's icky cold!  Let me tell you, it was a fun week.  Hence, the reason for the delay in blog posts.

I didn't knit much all week until yesterday (which I'll tell you about later...), but I did read some books!

The Jaguar (Charlie Hood) by T. Jefferson Parker (click there for the book or here: The Jaguar for the kindle version):  This was a recommendation by my mom and is the latest in a series with the main character Charlie Hood.  This is a book that starts out with a kidnapping -- a ransom request follows and the search for how to secure the release of the kidnapped woman.  She is being held in Mexico and the story revolves around drug cartels and her husband's involvement with them (whom she did not know has this secret other life).  Charlie Hood is a friend of the couple and is involved in helping with her release within a certain time frame, faced with the very real threat that if they don't get there, she will be skinned alive.  Overall, I was definitely drawn into the story line and I enjoyed the book, reading it fairly quickly.  However, the topic of drug cartels and military/political-type issues is not my usual interest, so I would look forward to the parts of the story that involved the kidnapped woman and her experiences (as opposed to the parts of the story that involved her husband and friend getting to her in armored cars, killing the enemy along the way).

Catching Fire (The Second Book of the Hunger Games), by Suzanne Collins, (click there for the book or here: Catching Fire (The Second Book of the Hunger Games) for the Kindle version) was the next book I read.  Oh. My.  Gosh.  AGAIN, couldn't put it down for the life of me.  Lots of excitement and the end (AGAIN!) leaves you with a cliff hanger that makes it nearly impossible to wait for the next book.  I am waiting, though, (and I've already read another book), because I like to let books in a series sit with me a little bit before I move on to the next one so I can think about them.  And enjoy the feeling of having read a really great book.  I love that.  Also, I don't want to risk feeling on overload by the story line, or worse maybe getting bored.  But, I must say with this one, it's more that I don't want them to be over so I'm dragging it out a little bit.

Heft: A Novel, by Liz Moore (click there for the book or here: Heft: A Novel for the Kindle version) was the last book I read.  This was a recommendation of Jennifer Weiner, an author whom I follow on Twitter.  I like her books (Good in Bed, In Her Shoes and more) and, usually, her book recommendations (not to mention, I like supporting someone that came from my hometown and whom I graduated high school with !).  She described this book as She's Come Undone (another great book by Wally Lamb) meets Anne Tyler.  I haven't read Anne Tyler but pass along the description for those of you who may have.    This was a really great book, centering around the lives of two people (mostly), a man and a teenage boy, and how their lives eventually intersect.  Definitely not a light-hearted book, and there are lots of heavy emotional parts, but really a nice story of overcoming hardships in life.  Another one I couldn't put down.

Yesterday, I went to the yarn shop for some knitting time with knitting friends.  I was telling Paul what a nice time I had, chatting with everyone not only about knitting, but books and food and that I was also telling them about drag racing things since a couple people had asked when he was starting (April, by the way).
Paul: "You were BENCH RACING???"
Me:  "Ummmmm. I don't know."

Apparently, if you talk about racing when you are not racing or are not at the race track, it is called bench racing.  Since I was talking about racing times and speeds and what you need for fast racing (a parachute), this qualified as bench racing.  Who knew?

What am I knitting you ask?
I finally got back to work on that project I was stringing you along about:

This is the Cranberry Capelet, which clearly in my case is not cranberry in color.  Mine is a pretty blue/gray.  After 8 inches of knit one, purl one ribbing (ugh), for the turtleneck portion, I'm ready for some more interesting knitting with the increases for the shoulders and cableing.  I think it's a very cute pattern and can't wait to see how it turns out.

Also, I started a project that I've been dying to do for some time, the Skew socks (that link is to, the free Ravelry download is only for non-english instructions):

This is a toe-up sock pattern with unusual shaping, for which you have to use one long circular needle or two shorter circular needles.  Because of the shaping techniques you cannot use double points, and at one point you have up to 102 stitches on your needle.  I'm using one long needle and the magic loop method.  As you can see, I'm only a few rows in, so stay tuned.  The pattern is 7 pages long, so it might be a while.  And I'm breaking my recently adopted policy of knitting 2 socks at the same time, since I have no idea how this pattern will go. Maybe as I get into it, I'll buy another needle and start the second one.  Don't you love those colors, by the way????? (Colinette Jitterbug in "Fruit Coulis")

Whew!  Hopefully you are still with me after this marathon blog post.  It's a beautiful day today (Sunday) and we are going for a drive.  More beautiful weather is in store for the upcoming week and I'm so hopeful for Spring....

1 comment:

  1. Love the drive to Cooperstown. Can't wait to see more of the Cranberry Capelet.