Friday, March 30, 2007

Garter Stitch Therapy

Yesterday, to help focus myself before the show, I put the finishing touches on this rather ordinary garter-stitch scarf.

The scarf is made from Lion's Brand Homespun, and the flowers are out of Knitpicks Crayola. I gave it to my director last night as an opening-night gift.

The flowers are simple little spirals; for the larger one, I cast on four stitches. For the smaller, I cast on three.

It's no testament to superior or challenging knitting. However, the simplicity was desperately needed. The meditative quality of the repeated stitches helped me focus just a bit.

There's this thing about putting yourself out there. It's a thing that many people before me have tried to describe, and if somebody described it accurately, we'd all just quote her rather than keep trying to explain to our non-artist friends why this life is not a good thing, why it in fact sucks really badly.
Just think for a minute about all the people you know who are afraid of public speaking.

Actors are just as scared, in their own way. And actors keep doing it. So do writers, in their own way, and painters, and anyone else who mines the shafts of their brains and experiences for something to present to other people. It's this thing you hate, but it's what you do -- it's your JOB, for crying out loud-- so you take a big breath and go do it again, and again, and again.

So phoo to all those people out there who want to be a Writer, but don't bother to write, or who want to be an Actor, because they think they can do it better than Cameron Diaz. They are looking for a thing that deeply sucks, but they don't have enough of a soul to recognize it.

My show is good. (That's another awful thing about this art thing, that you have to summon the courage to believe in your own fantasies and say good things about them. I don't think accountants or window washers or crossing guards have this problem.) So please come.

And when you come, disregard this entire post. Just try to understand why, even though the show went well last night, all I want to do is run away to a very foreign place with a long international extension on the phone number and not tell anyone where I am until they've forgotten they ever met me.
Only, it's my job.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Come to the best play EVER!

It's time, friends. Ohio Trip is almost here!

We open Thursday, and you'll want your seat reserved. Go here to read more.

Top reasons to buy advance tickets:
1. No surcharge for ordering online.
2. We can't take credit cards at the door.
3. Save your cash for tasty (donation-only) drinky drinks.
4. We might just sell out. Especially at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday.

Come to my play. You will be so glad you did.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

"Nobody. He's the author."

- Philip Henslowe, Shakespeare in Love

Not mentioning any names here. But last night it happened again. There was a rehearsal for one of my plays, I showed up on time, no one was there. Nobody told the playwright they'd cancelled rehearsal.

Either I'm too busy to get mad, or I've grown a lot in the year or so since this happened to me the last time. Either way, I'll earn nice-person points for being polite about it.

Ladies and gentleman, I give you... the Theater.

In other news: beanies knit only out of stockinette are very dull to work on after you get about 4" in. Perhaps my friend would like a hat with a hole on top?

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Another article due...

...which means more procrastination. There's still hope of finishing it by midnight...

1. The fellah and I ate tonight at an exceptional Greek restaurant. Of course I've already forgotten the name of it, but it's on Colorado between 8th and 9th Streets in downtown Austin. It was not only a good meal, but such a nice time. One of the best things in life is to sit and talk with good food.

2. I ran a terribly embarrassing time in the Bagelfest 5k last weekend. Perhaps waking up and scarfing down breakfast about 30 minutes before the gun went off wasn't the best strategy. As a former track athlete (hurdler or no) I should know better than to do that and then hope for anything better than ~32 minutes. (I don't get particular when the times are this bad.)

Ah, well... Something to improve on, right?

3. I broke my "no yarn purchases until April" rule and bought one skein of Blue Sky Organic Cotton (color 84) at Hill Country Weavers. Whoopsies. It's only that it's so soft, so pretty... so eco-friendly... and I want it.

I'll post a pic when I'm not on deadline. Till then, I've got roughly 150 yards of DK awaiting me... A hat, perhaps? A warmish weather lacey scarf? It could be the top of a pillow I've been planning, but it seems a shame to waste it in decor rather than wear it.

Back to work.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007


On Sunday afternoon, I attempted to dye my first hank of yarn with Kool-Aid. I went with Knitpicks Bare - Merino Wool Fingering Weight. It's only $3.99 for 440 yards, and I figured that was a good price for something I'd likely mess up.

I won't write all the details here for fear of leading someone else astray. However, if you want to try it yourself, I highly recommend these instructions.

After washing the wool, I mixed up the Kool-Aid (ice blue raspberry lemonade), and I placed the wool in the mixture in my biggest pasta pot and covered it with water. Then I began cooking it. Before it started to boil, I turned off the heat and covered the pot.

Then I made lunch. :)

After about 30 minutes of noshing and trying to learn lines for my play, I went back to the stove and discovered this:

(And this:)

I let the wool cool for a bit, tried to learn more lines, washed it once more, then hung it up to dry after a call to my mother to find out if that was really such a good idea.
It took forever to dry, but lookie!

You can't see it so much here, but the dye job turned out a little more uneven than I'd hoped. I figure I did two things wrong:

1. Press the wool when it's soaking, before putting it in the pot, so that all the air bubbles are pressed out.

2. I should have turned the wool over earlier in the process, so the part closest to the surface could soak up some of that ice blue raspberry lemonade, too.

However, it means I get some lovely varigated light blue yarn now. I think perhaps a shawl? Any thoughts?

I am so going to try this again with black cherry.

Saturday, March 3, 2007

Almost in time

My fellah has a couple friends who just had their second kid. Naturally, I viewed it as a chance to knit my first baby garment.

It's made on #10 dpn with Sensations Bellezza Collection Dolcetto, #6 (green). Alas, hand-wash only, but I figure the kid's mom can just dunk it in the baby's bathwater and then leave it out to dry, and nobody will know the difference.

I've enjoyed working with this yarn. I made a pair of Fetching and a mobius almost-cowl (more of a circular scarf, really). It's a wool-cotton blend, and one skein goes a long way (131.2 yards, 50g). In fact, I still have this much left.

Any suggestions? (I have a little left in #2 (yellow) as well.)