memes & quizzes

Because I spent last night reading Pretty Birds instead of spinning, here’s the knitting meme that’s been going around:  Take this list, and use bold for stuff you’ve done, italics for stuff you plan to do one day, and normal for stuff you’re not planning on doing.  (in the extended entry)

[edit: I have no idea why everything is showing up in bold on bloglines, but it looks right in situ.]


Questions from Mim:

1.  You spin a lot of very small skeins of yarn.  Do you have any plans for all those wee bits?

The green ones are probably going to wind up in my green freeform blanket.  The yellow/gold/red/brown ones are probably going to wind up in the red/gold/brown freeform blanket I’m going to knit around a couple of rectangles I knit for a blanket a couple of years ago.  The white (plain wool blend/plain cormo) will be for dyeing experiments.  Anything that doesn’t end up in a freeform blanket (or pile of yarn for such) will probably find its way into a stripy something for Dulaan or maybe a pair of wristwarmers.  (My handspun wristwarmers from last spring took less than an ounce of wool each…)

2.  What area of science do you work in?

Developmental neuroscience, specifically axon guidance.  I’m studying how neurons find appropriate signalling partners as they extend their output bits.

3.  What is your favorite thing about living in Philly?

It’s a small town in the degree of commmunity feeling (and the number of people I’ve met in multiple contexts), but with the benefits of a big city–walkability, museums, music, good restaurants, public transit…  (As much as everyone complains about SEPTA, it is worlds better than the public transit anywhere else I’ve ever lived.)

4.  What is your favorite type of fiber?

Wool.  BFL and merino are particularly nice kinds of wool, but some preps of corriedale are really nice, and general, all-around basic wool is good.  Silk can be fun, as can mohair, but I really like wool.

5.  What is your favorite food?

Perfectly-ripe sugar snap peas, eaten while still standing in the garden.  Mmmm… 

If you want me to ask you five questions, leave a comment.   (I don’t really expect it to become an issue, but I’m not going to come up with questions for more than five people.)

Tagged by Anne:

First Things First

What is the first thing you did in the new year?

Finished a game of Settlers of Catan.

What is the first thing you ate in the new year?

Half a (very large) pumpernickel bagel with some smoked bluefish.  Yum.

What is the first thing you knit in the new year?

Well, I haven’t finished anything yet this year, but I started a hat out of purple Lamb’s Pride that will be either a birthday present for my grandmother or another item for Dulaan.

What is your first ‘blessing’ of the new year?

Games with friends!

What is the first thing you will do to make the world a better place in the new year?

I may have to go with Anne and Rachael on the not-stabbing-people thing.  But I am continuing with the local foods…I’m getting my January Winter Harvest delivery tomorrow.

Post the first photo you took in the new year!

I will, as soon as I take one.  Sorry.  It’s been a little crazy around here.  I would’ve taken a picture of the "Godfather of Cement" trailer that was parked somewhere in South Philly on Monday, but my camera was too slow–the light changed by the time it’d woken up.

I’m not tagging anyone, but if you answer this, let me know.

Most of my energy this week has gone into work and packing (and watching season 6 of West Wing…), but I have done a little bit of spinning and knitting.


This is some of the silk cap that I bought at MDSW. I did some spindle spinning last Sunday morning at the campsite, and it reminded me that spindling is fun, too. So I’ve been spinning this silk–sorry, Steph, but the Grafton batt is first up for the wheel–and it’s really impressive. Aside from it being pretty and shiny, it’s just amazing to see some of the “yarn” I’m winding onto my spindle looking like my hair except that it’s purple and shinier. (I’ve decided not to care about evenness for this; it’ll range from thread to fingering with some slubs and neppy bits, and I’ll use it for something lacy. I think.)


This is a better picture of the whole silk cap than I showed last week.

While I’m on the subject of things I could’ve shown you last week, here’s my favorite picture of our campfire from Maryland.


And…this afternoon, I went to a concert at the Kimmel Center (ahh, Beethoven), where I had plenty of time to knit. This is the second corriedale wristwarmer.


One more thing, while I’m posting. I found this handwriting meme on Miriam‘s blog, and thought it looked interesting. So here we have a pangram and my first name, in my handwriting. I’ll just have to be careful if I ever want to send an anonymous package again…


Here’s hoping my dozen or so boxes and crates of books will waltz to my new apartment.

Book meme:

I’ve changed this a bit, but the rules I used are as follows:
Look at the list of books below. Bold the ones you’ve read, italicize the ones you’ve been meaning to read, cross out the ones you probably won’t read, underline the ones on your book shelf, and place parentheses around the ones you’ve never even heard of. Books in plain text are things I haven’t read and feel neutral toward.

To answer Mim‘s question: There are books I would only read if I were stranded someplace and didn’t have much choice of reading material, and there are books I probably still wouldn’t read (like horror stories) until I’d been stranded for a month. I figured I should make some sort of distinction among the books I have yet to read. Of course, I should also note that I might not have gotten around to reading Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, which I really liked, had I not been staying with friends for a month with only about three books of my own (one of which I finished on the train on the way there).

The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown
The Catcher in the Rye – J.D. Salinger
The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy – Douglas Adams
The Great Gatsby – F.Scott Fitzgerald
To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee

The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger
His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – J. K. Rowling
Life of Pi – Yann Martel
Animal Farm: A Fairy Story – George Orwell
Catch-22 – Joseph Heller
The Hobbit – J. R. R. Tolkien
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon
Lord of the Flies – William Golding
Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
1984 – George Orwell
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – J. K. Rowling

One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
(The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold)
Slaughterhouse 5 – Kurt Vonnegut
(The Secret History – Donna Tartt)
Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe – C. S. Lewis
Middlesex – Jeffrey Eugenides
(Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell)
Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
(Atonement – Ian McEwan)
(The Shadow Of The Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon)
The Old Man and the Sea – Ernest Hemingway
The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
Dune – Frank Herbert

Yarn quiz in the extended entry.


Now that I’ve been tagged for this meme/quiz twice, by Cyn and Emily, maybe I’ll post my answers.

(Fours meme in the extended entry.)


In lieu of actual knitting or spinning pictures, I present two memes or meme-like things. Both of them are things I meant to post a while ago.

First, I have set up a Frappr Map. Maps are wonderful things, and they’re even more fun if they have people associated with them. So wave hello!

Second: a picture of my usual knitting spot, for Scout‘s meme.


This is my couch. There’s also usually a table in front of the couch with my laptop on it, and sometimes a blanket in some of that empty space. And sometimes the cat curls up next to me instead of sitting on the back of the couch. (Actually, you may recognize the back of the couch from the number of times it’s appeared as a background in my progress and yarn pictures.)

…and because I didn’t want to go back to working so soon after getting home, I present to you a quizzy thing (in the extended entry).


As you may have noticed from the button in the sidebar, I’ve joined Secret Pal 6. My answers to the questionnaire are in the extended entry.


via Cynthia.

1. Do you knit continental or English?
English. I’ve debated about learning continental (for real), but I like being able to free my left hand for taking notes while knitting. I plan to eventually brush up my continental knitting so I can knit two-handed fair isle.

2. How long ago did you learn to knit?
About three and a half years ago (late August, 2001)

[3. Who taught you to knit?
My friend Emma V., who was one of my housemates at the time.]

5. First FO?
A green hat, entirely in stockinette (in the round). I learned circs and dpns really early.

6. Favorite yarn?
My consistent favorite is Manos del Uruguay. I particularly love the prairie and jungle colorways, (Who, me? Variegated brown and green?) and I like the subtle variegation in the solids.

7. Favorite pattern?
I don’t think I have one, really. I have pretended to follow Knitty‘s fuzzyfeet pattern twice, though, which is more than any other pattern. I tend to either adapt existing patterns or just make up my own, at least for anything simple and fast enough for me to make more than once. That said, I really liked both the Highland Triangle Shawl and the felted turtle from FiberSpace (via Patternworks).

8. Favorite pattern source?
Quite possibly Folk Shawls. I’m also rather fond of Interweave Knits.

9. Favorite needles?
My favorite needles that I own are my Brittany birch 5s. Sometime when I have more money in my knitting budget, I want to get some Lantern Moon dpns and some wooden circulars.

10. Nicest thing you’ve ever knit?
Probably my Highland Triangle Shawl, or maybe the snowflake hat that I designed and made for my dad.

11. Most hated project?
Sophie. Waaaay too much i-cord.

12. Who are you going to pass this on to?
Emma C., and Anne (assuming she ever reads this to find out).