Tuesday, August 29, 2006

what puzzles me

Sour milk. Czech sour milk with Czech writings on one side of the carton and Slovak ones on the other side - quite normal, we were one country for quite a time. But, why the hell the 'best before' thingie is in Finnish and Swedish of all languages?

Mom was cleaning up a bit, digging up things from her wardrobe. She offered me several pieces, some I wouldn't touch with a stick (we have different tastes, not hygienic habits).. and today morning she told me that she found a nice top I might like. Bringing me my purple and gold Benetton top I bought in Firenze last winter and of which I thought that I left it in Copenhagen in April 2005. I asked about it several times and all she said was along the lines of 'could you start looking after your things one day'....

Yesterday I was sitting at the computer doing something useless and the boss exclaimed: 'Where's the teapot? I want to water the flowers!' and started looking for it, commenting that we all here are messy, me being the messiest one. I told her that I have the teapot, that I made myself a pot of tea. She was surprised.


Addenda to previous post

I'm bad with linear text. I just cannot get a nice, continuous flow. I'm digressing all the time. So, imagine that you take this and the previous post and maybe the other ones of your choice, mix it and shake well and then pour on the floor to get something coherent. Blogspot just doesn't alow me, as a piece of paper does, to use various colors, all sorts of asterisks, arrows and insertions extending all over the sheet creating a piece of graphic design on its own. So I'm simply being chaotic and it serves you righ, you should go and have a life instead of reading this crap.
So, here's the surgical pink yarn. In the reality it looks worse. If a puke should be expressed in yarn, this is a hot candidate. But - the greenish piece on the pic with the furry thing shows that even surgical pink is manageable. * I think I'll dye it with some greens and blues.
The furry stuff... is just a furry and cuddly stuff. Soft and probably machine-washable, thus a polar fox can almost equal it. A peeled polar fox is not machine-washable and you have to kill it first (and the nasty little bastards have sharp little teeth that make nasty little holes in yourhands. And they don't brush their teeth and eat dead animals so peeling a fox is in fact helluva dangerous thing), on the other hand, it's soft and warm and compostable. This polyamide, I think, you have to knit first but as far as I reckon there are no recorded cases of blood poisoning after pricking your finger with a knitting needle. And I must admit that polar foxes go in nicer colours.
I even bought a pattern book. In fact I saw it somewhere and not that I was too much into pattern books, I'm a chaotic improviser (as evident), but I wanted to learn to knit lace and it helps when one is told how to. The flower pattern is called blossoming wine. Maybe the translator got it wrong and it was originally in English just a blossoming vine. Wine (the thing that produces grapes aka Vinis vitifera) has ugli little green blossoms, this looks rather like wisteria. But anyway, the colours are nice... in the pattern. The yarn I dyed is too dark for what I imagined and as I dyed it in whole balls and first I dipped it into water and after taht I added the colorant, it's spotted. Can be redyed, though, but it'll still be dark. And, I found a patttern for creeper plant in lace, I wonder, can it be combined somehow?
And, I promise, I'll write about something else than the stupir knitting some other time.

*Beware ye mortals. I'm tough and nothings stops me if I don't let it.**
**You must not believe me anything. I'm just a stupid shy blonde who fights a huge amount of inferiority complexes ***, fears and stuff. I just managed the art of Public Relations passably well.
*** Such as: I have a thin fragile hair; I have big fat ass; I have bad skin; I have scars; I don't speak Russian; I have ugly and fat face; I have a deformed toenail; I have beer gut; I cannot drive even though our neighbour with the iq not exceeding the room temperature can;I always digress in the middle of the story... On the other hand, such complexes as I have an unbrushable shrub on my head or My legs are thin as nails have skipped me somehow. maybe I'm not totally doomed.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Back online

I spent three days in Prague in my reconstructed appartment. I have the internet conection there but no computer at the moment, and, there was lots of stuff to clean.
I thought that I'd vacuum clean it, wash it (whatever the 'it' might be) and it will all be ready in two hours and then I'll go have some culture and stuff. No way. I entered, I had to wash the chair so that I could put my bag on it. Then I sighed and wnt to the centre to do some shopping. Rubber gloves, CDs and stuff. I was cleaning until some 11pm - it showed that the floor tiles aren't of the wrong color, after a bit of hard work with a brush, they become red. And so on. Just the tub is covered by some stuff as the guys washed tools in it. I pured strong chemicals onto it and it started giving way but with such speed i'm going to get it clean no sooner than for Christmas. However, the toilet looks civilized, not like a backcountry outhouse (although I might send a pic to some lifestyle magazine creating a new bathroom fashion). I just need to install some sort of shelf for reading matter there.
Barka came on Thursday, I needed to get furniture out of one of the rooms to have the floor done... and we realized that the wardrobe is some two milimieters lower than the height of the door frame (newly painted, for that matter) is. So we somehow managed to get it through although we couldn't use the ladies' way of moving heavy furniture because of the height*. The Ikea furniture is awful, by the way. I know that the cheap stuff is single use only.. but trying to move something made of thin chipboard.. which means that it's heavy like hell and stable like a paper bag.. it sucks. And I have to add that shoe boxes have better design than my furniture and their only disadvantage is that there're none large enough to hang clothes in. Otherwise I have lots of shoe boxes. One of my favourite brands makes boxes of a size to match the CD boxes, for example... so why should I bother to get a CD stand (unless it's some nice design piece to please my heart, of course. That's why I have designer kitchenware, sure I can eat from a plastic bowl).
I got some more yarn. And some more yarn, three nice packets. Some silk for Juha's sweater (need to dye it beforehand and even before to rewind it into hanks, balls dye badly), quite a nice thin tape which has fascinating self-entangling properties, I'll have to handle it carefully because it's wound onto pieces of cardboard (what sort of idiot invented that, I wonder.), here featuring on yellow washing cloth, spread on a book of Swedish poetry Kaylee sent me. I liked that book.
Some alpaca. Pure alpaca, hear that? 45czk per 50g skein. Bargainy bargain.. It looked turquoise on the website, in reality it's the most terrible petrol green I could ever imagine, the washing cloth makes it look better. In reality it's a dark green.. imagine a muddy pond in warm weather including the smell andadd a bit of blue to this mental image. You'll get the color and the visual sensation... and it's so soft and cuddly... I'll try whether chlorine bleach makes it better. If not, I'll dye it black. Black covers anything. And makes me look thinner.
Half a kilo of mohair (35 czk/50g skein). Baby pink but light colors dye nicely. I'm thinking about some sunset-like color scheme. Blue, orange, gray, pink.. could be. Not that I had an idea what to make of it but it doesn't matter at all. Something nice and warm.
And another pack on Friday, fluffy poly-something which is basically against my principles but I got it with thison my mind. Well, I'll make it more covering. I have a beer gut rather than a sixpack in my belly area. the little piece of greenish something at the bottom of the picture is a dyed sample of the following horror..... so that you can be optimistic from the beginning... This weirdo yarn which was pale pink on the pic... and surgical pink in reality. It looked like a puke. However, it's quite ok to touch. What surprised me was the price tag. DM14.95, would you believe it? German marks.. how long is Germany in the monetary union, since 2001? And.... how much was German mark before, some 18 czk, i think... so the yarn was something like 270 czk and it looks like old rags of surgeon's working clothes? (I got it for 35 per skein... could be). It's rayon and cotton and flax, I guessed that something might dye and I added a piece to the pot of green in which I was making the pale green viscose more passable... and surprise, the surgical pink changed into beautiful deep green whereas the synthetic tape component retained a range of pastel colors. I'll have to invent something vintagey for this yarn. Any ideas welcome....
(pics coming gradually later)
*how to move furniture when you're fragile and weak or the furniture big and heavy: lift it on one side and kick a piece of cloth onder it. Something like old bed linen, folded to a nice rectangle to fit under. Do the same on the other side. Then you can slide the thing on the floor. Doesn't work for carpeted surfaces, stairways and things. But if you need to chase spiders away from behind your piano, it works ok. That's what my mom taught me, you know(-:. She's smart.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Lazyass invasion

Relatives came for a visit.
Not that my aunt and the cousins were worldwide renowned for their helpfullness and industry but this time it was too much even for me.
Aunt got slightly drunk on Friday (my instincts told me that I shouldn't come too early from work so I saw the party being dissolved. She however fuond a bit of time to express that 'what a beautiful kitty you have, so smooth and so blue-eyed' and whatever 'and the boys love her so and cuddled her all day because she has so soft little feet and soft little ears' etc. Sure i noticed that my cat has soft little feet and other externalities, after all, night by night, she spares a few moments to jump on me or something. Aunt also felt an urge to keep me informed about her younger son and his school troubles and sort of asked for help. As if I was i a state to tell her what to do... well, yeah, my cousin is a spoiled brat and my mom says that she could take him in for holiday and mold him into a civilized and well-behaved person but that it would be expensive:-).
Yesterday evening the lazyasses luckily left in the morning to see grandpa in the hospital (regarding that they left grandma's place for the hospital which is in the next town at half past nine and left for home after having had a lunch at eleven, it had to be a long visit indeed) so we could finish cleaning the carpets (something like two hectares of them; especially the white one was a bit of a problem but the dirt went off. Then the carpet was happily drying in the sun and the dog had no better idea than walk over it and leave a nice series of footprints there. Mom, frustrated by her relatives, gave a scream that hinted anything... anything that smelled blood), we went to do the big shopping - and didn't have a single argument. And the rest of the day was sunny, with beautiful clouds, just a step behind 'the photogenic clouds' which come twice a year, such nice cushiony clouds, totally blue sky, visibility 300 kilometers, crisp light and cold wind, this weather comes twice a year, mainly on a Wednesday when one has 72 important appointments and cannot go doing photography.
I've gone thru a major emotional disturbance so I felt simply miserable. I had a headache and the usual cure, drink a litre of water and wait until i get rehydrated, just didn;'t work so I simply lay in bed, ate the rest of Lindt Citron intense (expensive chocolate is a cure for basicaly everything) and knitted. The Stella yarn comes out nicely, although it is a totally deadly boring plain garter stitch - and notice my toenails... see the greenish shine? I have nail varnish on them, I felt a touch of vanity....
And I dyed the rest of the yarn to do the other half of the sweater.
No knitting progress otherwise.
No any other progress otherwise.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Nothing much

I'm still working on my thesis. Seems that right now I'm knee deep in problems, sort of low prices, wide choice. Was this piece of crap made in the 1390's in Italy or 'first half of 15th century' in a local workshop in Norrland? OK, maybe such details won't change te world but for me it means a lot. And as for that statue, no-one has hitherto bothered to state which tree was used.
And for most of the world, this stuff is incredibly boring, yesterday I came home and started talking about this st. Birgitta from Skederid and the only result was that mom told me to shut up and started to talk about floor varnish and things. Who the hell is interested in floor varnish... It was an interesting evening I came home quite late and they probably were already heated up by some previous discussions so shortly after my arrival they started to argue who is more stupid. It started with some problems concerning construction of doorsteps and really, then they started accusing each other of being idiots.
I left to read and knit.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006


Home improvement. I got an ugly file folder from the secretary so I upgraded it with a bit of Florentine paper. I also fished from somewhere some forgotten postcards with Tuscany landscapes. So.. I gave a deep sigh, mailed the postcards to random victims and went to refresh my folder with the irises. A few hints: if you use water-based glue, then, the backward retention or how the hell it is called, will occur, meaning that the water will get absorbed by the paper and it'll stretch. Not on the dry edges, though. And the glue will get dryer on the surface. So, dip the paper in water or spray it before, you'll avoid the problems I had. By the way, the paper store is in Via Ricasoli, just off the Piazza Duomo, but I forgot its name. They have beautiful things there. And expensive.
The top made of handpained Ganique yarn features beside the book on San Giovanni in Bologna. Not that i was reading it recently, I jsut dug it up when cleaning and the sky matches the yarn. The red dotted line shows where one skein ended and another one started - a considerably darker shade. It means that I'll have to redye the whole garment..... and I've fixed the dye bad anyway so my hands were blue when I knitted... which is certainly not practical, especially if you wear expensive pastel colored underwear (which is quite probable because it shows under knitted stuff) and the dye is loosened by sweat and fixed to the bra by the salt contained in it. It happened to me once with a bought garment and yeah, I was enraged.
Stella tape made into another top placed on a catalogue of French gothic art. That tape is lovely, mostly cotton with poly-something that gives it a bit of shine and it's soft and pleasant to touch and I invented a overcomplicated pattern I'm probably not able to make... but after all, it's easy to rip and nice to mess up with it again.

Friday, August 11, 2006

New arrivals

Eight skeins of ghastly green viscose tape. Viscose dyes nicely. And eight balls of bllue and white tape. The problem is that I have no ideas for tape at around now. But it was such a bargain that I couldn't resist. Its time will come, sure. And some more tape (another sale elsewhere) is coming, for a price even more bargainy.. and the silk yarn for normal, albeit incredible price... I'm getting it for czk 27 per ball, in one shop I saw it for 51 and in another for 80. Robbery. Anyway, I checked this store again today -they have a huge, get-me-rid-of-it-all sale. So I ordered another 8 skeins of pure alpaca (ghastly turquoise green, at least it appeared so on the pic), and some very mohairy mohair, ghastly baby pink..... but all this dyes nicely.
Speaking of dyeing, the remaining Angel yarn is immersed in brine with the dyes (salt-fixed ones, as you might guess, more domfy that the vinegar-fixed ones, the process doesn't smell), being processed to the irregularly colored almost-a-miracle. I confess, I'm fascinated by it.
And, most importantly of all, I startder writing my thesis. Not jsut making odd notes, but really writing, real text. I couldn't produce something sensible but I discovered that my main mistake was beginning from the beginning. So, one day I took a piece of paper, put down the actual structure and realized that I have lots to write about, started with the Italy part... and intro comes later. That's it.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

I've installed a counter on this blog (thanx, Sergio) and to my own surprise I discovered that there's people coming.
And, needing to sort out the everyday crap from serious crap, there's another blog. Not very serious, but about art.
I had a nice day. I went to the Archdiocesan Museum, it was open ij June and I haven't been there yet. It was cool, the new parts of the buildings are really good (There'll be some pics and things on teh art blog, someday, I was in one part on some tour for architects adn I have quite good pics. Already scanned somewhere) but the inside.. well, I was interested in the medieval stuff (as always) and I didn't like the tags. I could haggle about some attributions but what was quite annoying was lack of basic informations like material of the works. But the general impressions was good.
I walked a bit, found a nice edition of Michelangelo's sonnets, from 1941, bought a vase (well, something from the 80's, judging inexpertly from the shape) but quite nice and got some art books, one on Anonio Ciampelli, the guy who did some wall paintings in Il gesu in Rome, whose cartons ended up for whatever the reason in Olomouc library, and one on French manuscripts. The Ciampelli one was available only in Italian, they already sold out the Czech version, and as such it was heavily discounted*
And I did next to nothing about my studies and writing... again.

*Do you see why it is important to know languages?

Monday, August 07, 2006


The boss told me to take a week off. Something is stuck ( I have a vague idea what is stuck. I'd prefer to keep it vague) and she cannot invent any more work for me now. So it means that some of the thesis written and no money earned. I'll have to squeeze something out of the parents. Regarding that I've spent some 2000 czk on yarn again (end of summer sales, you know, and when there're 70%discounts... and I cancelled the order for the hitherto undelivered helluva expensive tape yarn, ordering something similar made of moreless cotton (dyeable) for less than half price so I'll get my tape top anyway.....). I'll check whether there's some user friendly boutique so that I could sell some of the products, Katarina's sister works in something like that...
Katarina came to call. She was in the neighboring village for a weekend and just dropped in. I gave her all my sorted-out clothes (as I desribed it last week), she was totally happy that she'll sort it out somehow, that her sister is in a remaking mood and that stuff which couldn't be used somehow can be exchanged with neighbours (after all, there was some brand stuff, we're a posh family after all:-)) for homemade pear brandy or something likewise useful. Tähti was happy too, there was someone who smelled of cats and general goodness.. and was dressed in black:-) so after five minutes of peeking from behind the chair she seated herself in Katarina's lap and was social. Katarina was enthusiastic. That the kitty is cute and sweet and elegant and whatever.
It was raining all day long and as I was walking around a bit, I got wet. The unwashed silk yarn of my sweater started to smell like a compost. Or a wet haystack. ON the other hand wet wool smells like wet sheep:-)
Another Monday, another bad hair day (I should do something about my hair). I still have a cold but it's at least getting a bit better, it's been raining all weekend long.. so I was sitting at home, knitting, studying and avoiding people.
And yes, I know, it's not absolutely correct to come to work, check e-mails, write a blog entry, make a coffee and then start really doing something. but I have nothing to do, the stuff I started on Friday was to be checked by the editor in chief and she's having her morning coffee at her home.*
Anyway, I knit half of a sweater... or rather a smaller half (mathematicians, don't come killing, It's a figure of speech). And I cannot continue, need to dye the remaining yarn first. And get some more. This is made of five skeins and I have five more. And should they have more... meantime I got paid fo July, you see, and this mohair/alpaca/something is a real bargain.
I'm adding another pic of the tree sweater. i just cannot sort of arrange it so that the pattern would be visible and it would look nice. So this one is approximately ok. And Tähti resides at her favorite place which happens to be my chair and looks cute. She's a real expert on looking cute. She even is cute although it doesn't mean that she couldn't be pretty mean, likepressing her wet cold nose against mine at 3 am when I'm fast asleep just for the heck of it.
I'm starting to be repetitive... the cat, me, yarn, another yarn.... I promise, I'll try to go out and have some life... someday. Today Katarina should be coming so there'll be something up, maybe.
(And, I plan to start another blog. On art. As soon as I'll get to the scanner to digitalize my pics froom Italy... don't expect it too soon, though. You know me.)

*The editor in chief came, asked what was I doing, I said sorting out the picture archive, i have nothing to do. She told me that she has no time to explain me all the stuff and that I do anyhting I need to for my thesis or something. So, I'm allowed to idle around.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Every day is a bad hair day

I finished the tree sweater. A few weeks ago. It was so hot that I didnt't feel like trying it. Today morning I guessed tahtI might feel a bit cold so I took it. A colleague of mine who saw it thrown acrosss a chair was totally enthusiastic and even more totaly enthusiastic when she asked wehre I got it and I replied that I made it by myself. (I'll have to make her repeat it when my mom is within the hearing range) I should put down the pattern but the problem is that I basically cannot knit. I mean, I can knit, but not in the knitters' way. When I was six, mom taught me how to knit&purl, probably hoping that I'd shut up for a while. All the rest is a simple exercise in topology - I just imagine how I'd like the thing to look and then I find a way how to get the result. I have no idea about knitting properly, with all the terminology and stuff. So, should someone want the pattern, leave a note in the comments and as soon as there's someone to do the photography, I'll make pics.
The hibiscus is a specimen of our office flora, by the way. And the shelf is an example of our ordinate and clear filing system. The files are probably extracted by a hayfork.
And I'm grinning. Along with the proverbally bad hair of mine, it makes me look retarded.. but I'm used to it, don't worry.

Office life

Yesterday I caught cold from a colleague. He claimed to nave it caught from the airconditioning but I don't believe it. I sit closer to the thing and I got cold when the heats gave in and rains started. Whatever the source, my nose and the cavities around are blocked by snot, my eyes resemble those of an used cosmetic rabbit and feel accordignly.
We're working on some stuff for teachers. The guys are putting together the links ('and for the theme Humans and their surroundinsg use the article in biology 5, page 47 on the left') and I'm doing templates for projects. Teachers are basically lazy so the aim is to get them everything instant, to have something to copy and distribute. I'm struggling thru something named like 'Europe has different pieces which differ from the other pieces'. Maybe I'm overestimating the kids but working on something like Reindeers live north/south/east from us which is Spain/Finland/wherever would have made me entertained for two minutes, it's all aobut crossing out the wrong things.... So I was toying with the layout and things and late in teh afternoon there was a blackout and the server collapsed. As I needed to connect to the network, I hung around for a while, then gave in and went home. Today I realized that the whole file got damaged, cannot be opened.. so my whole day's work is gone.

Quote of the day: 'The capital of Finland is Tampere, isn't it." (the editor in chief)

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Work in progress

I went home early yesterday. I had, thus, time to: work out, socialize with Tähti, study and knit.I made pics of things but uploads don't cooperate again...
The results of my dyeing session were already mentioned... so, this is the kingfisher batch of Ganique yarn, alpaca, mohair, poly something, thin, knotty, will have to be knitted double... but doesn't matter. I used the La nave dyes, light blue, violet (for the dark blue shade when mixed with the light blue) and light green (which produced nice malachite green wool, to be shown when I feel like it) to give it some depth. I'll make a tunic of it as soon as I have some unemploued size 5 circulars. And some idea for the pattern.
Two months ago I ordered some tape yarn which is still totally sold out both in the shop and from the supplier. It was a bit more expensive than my usual standards (which can be stated as ' buy something as natural as possible and give it the expensive fancy touch yourself) and it still is not. I planned to make a summer top from it. Seems that summer is over, it's raining outside and the forecast promises 50 mm for today (i. e. local floods) but anyway. When I was cleaning, I found some leftovers of blue (La nave, light blue) silk, teh garment made of it disapeared somewhere.. but I ripped the leftovers to strips and started knitting it. Everything can be knitted, basically. I ran out of material pretty soon, of course.... Long time ago, some 20 years, if you want to be exact, I read a redcipe how to make a sweater from old bed linen or something, which run like this: Get seven meters of calico and rip it to 1.5 cm wide strips. (Could be, lemme think, three old sheets)... Anyway, I'll have to drop at the art supplies store to check the silk, I just hope they have some.
And, the book underneath is Birgitta i Vadstena, open on the pages with a Birgitta cycle from the Tensta church. Shlould someone know something on wall painting in medieval Sweden, leave a note. I still have a few issues about it.
When I ran out of silk tape, I started the Alpine meadow thing. A sweater. I like sweaters. It knits nicely, I was reading my Complete scuplture of Michelangelo or how the hell it might be called and knitted without looking. I like to knit while I study which is particularly impractical for complicated patterns (they suit more to travelling) so we'll see when I reach the point where cables start. Maybe I'll go somewhere far:-)