grad school, politics, knitting and other meanderings. And not enough time for any of it.
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Wednesday, June 29, 2005
(on) nodding (off)
Last night I had terrible insomnia. It wasn't the kind of insomnia that makes me toss and turn and feel generally miserable about not sleeping. It was the kind that keeps me wide awake (maybe that was the coffee I drank?) staring wide-eyed at the ceiling. Here's a snapshot of the crap going through my head that was keeping me from sleeping...
...maybe my tables are stretching out when dreamweaver renders them because the height for the whole table is off?......I could get up really early and finish some more book editing to get it done......will my prelim committee be finished grading my prelim before the ASA meeting in August... will I know the results before I leave?...while I am there... should I tell them to wait to after my presentation?......will I have to stare at them wondering what the results are...will I be happy?...embarrassed?......maybe the cells in the tables are the correct height and the whole table height is wrong so things get stretched out that way......Mohanty has that critique of Western views of non-Western women... what was that about again?......hey, July 4th is some kind of holiday and I don't have to work... I can stay home and get a full day of studying in......who is that person who critiques the term "difference"... is that King? Deborah King... oh hey, I remember something.....maybe the website from the first time they did the course is still up....maybe I can look at that for some more ideas about the organization of this website.....should I turn off our a/c?...
You get the idea. I got up and worked some more until 2am. Today at work I was so tired I could have slept at my desk.
See, I have this problem (Jo knows about this all too well) of thinking too much all the time. She understands that when I say things that seem out of whack with the conversation we are having, that it isn't because I wasn't listening, it is because I was thinking something else at the same time. During the last couple weeks Jo has been noticing that I nod my head a lot sometimes. The first time she noticed this was while we were watching Six Feet Under. I was nodding my head like I was agreeing with something on the show, but there was nothing to agree with. I guess she also noticed me doing this a lot at the talk we went to at Rainbow Community Bookstore. I know that evening I had a lot of information to mull over, so while the talk was going on I was thinking about many other things. I was totally multitasking while I was there. Then, I noticed myself nodding a little on the bus this morning. I was reading, and had music playing and I was also thinking about something else entirely. Have I become so totally strange that I am nodding along with whatever is going on in my head? Jeez. I really hope not. Am I just too tired to hold my head still? Let me know if you see me doing this, please.
posted by knit wit | 6/29/2005 04:19:00 PM
Tuesday, June 28, 2005
lupins for you
I have neither the time to blog right now, nor anything even slightly interesting to blog about. So, I give you this beautiful picture of Lupins, seen throughout Maine in June. I took this picture on the side of Route 1 in Woolwich. Enjoy!
posted by knit wit | 6/28/2005 09:07:00 PM
Sunday, June 26, 2005
the way we were
While we're on the topic of movies... tonight Jo and I were going to rent Suspect Zero (pay per view on digital cable) but of course, the digital cable kept giving us some kind of "system not available error." I seriously considered going back in my office to study instead of watching a movie, but good god, I can't spend 12 hours a day sitting in there! So we flipped around and found The Way We Were on AMC. I've never seen it (Jo had but it had been a while). I'm not one for romance movies. I am just not into them at all-- unless they have some kind of interesting plot (beyond romance as that alone doesn't count as an interesting plot), and are set in some equally interesting time period. This movie satisfied both those requirements. I loved the character Katie. I love the late 30s-40s and I love that the film was made in the 70s (it had that wonderful 70s feel but also the song Memories would drift in an out so often in a way they could only do in a 70s movies). So, I loved it. Yes, I actually loved (and maybe cried during) a romance movie.
Now it is back to finishing up some studying before heading to bed. I think I have indeed reached the point where sleeping seems like a waste (but I know I need at least 7 hours or my mind can't function, and I know that keeping my body generally healthy is key) BUT I know tomorrow morning at 6am I'll wake up and instead of lying around drinking my coffee, I'll end up in here and try to get something done. Is there enough time? Have I done enough by this point? The hell if I know. If I think about it too much I'll loose it. My enemy and my friend is always thinking too much all the time. I just keeping plugging along. Its all about balance and movement.
And thanks to Ang for the words of wisdom. They really mean a lot, Ang. (And I am taking you out to eat after this exam for putting together the gender prelim bible.) I'll bookmark that post and read it again sometime soon. Its good to know I am not alone in this insanity...
posted by knit wit | 6/26/2005 09:12:00 PM
"party on Wayne!"
As Ang and Dorotha did, I'll post some movies I am ashamed to admit I love. I've been so deep in feminist critiques of white, middle-class, Eurocentric ways of thinking that anything to distract me is welcome...
Wayne's World: This movie just takes me back to junior high when Jony and watched it probably over 100 times. I'll still watch it when it is on, but it isn't as funny as it used to be. Except for the part where Garth looses it and stabs all the donuts- that just always cracks me up for some reason.
Centerstage: I agree with Ang on this movie. For some reason I love dance, especially the hard work it entails and there is something about this movie that I just love. The acting is bad and the ending is trite- but it is great. I've seen it about 5 times.
9 to 5: This has been one of my favorite movies since I was very little. I don't know if I consider to be all that bad in terms of movies (I think it is a freakin' great movie), but most would probably disagree with me so I added it to this list. I used to love to run around saying "sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot" when I was a kid. I still do.
Big Business: Speaking of Lilly Tomlin... this time with Bette Midler (oh- should I admit to loving the movie Beaches? Nah.) Big Business is truly embarrassing to admit. It's bad- just really hokey and silly. Its about 2 sets of twins that are mistakenly split up at birth. One set of un-matched twins ends up in the big business world of NYC and the other set winds up in some very small and shamelessly hickish town that of course the other set of twins is out to strip-mine.
10 Things I Hate About You: "Taming of the Shrew" but with kids in a super-rich Californian high school. This movie is all about one of the things I hate about movies- upper class everything. People with money dripping off of them and it isn't even necessary for the plot. But, what can I say, if it is on, I watch it!
posted by knit wit | 6/26/2005 05:49:00 PM
headache, headache, go away.
I woke up with a heachache yesterday. Instead of beginning to study early in the morning, I did everything I could to get rid of the headache, and didn't start until 10am.
Yesterday the reward for my studying was taking my BBBS little sister to a "carnival" at the Boys & Girls club. It was fun- they had all kinds of games to play and they gave all the kids dinner and prizes. My little's entire family attended, so her mother asked me to drive the youngest three there with my little sister. Well, it took me 15 minutes to dig the seat belts out of the backseat of my volvo. Its been a long time since someone sat back there. Then, there was the argument about who had to sit in the middle (the youngest ended up there even though she wanted the window but she was small enough to just be moved there by her older sister). Then, I had three kids laughing, singing, moving around a lot and kicking the back of my seat for the entire drive across town. My little was in the front turning around every few minutes and telling them to knock it off. They really were cute kids, and for their ages they were well-behaved, but the experience just gently reminded me that 1 kid is perfect, and 3 are a handful. I don't know how my parents did it!
Anyway, back to the exciting topic of headaches. Just the other day I was congratulating myself for being so good to my neck and shoulders and for keeping great posture. I haven't had a bad headache in a couple months now. Then, I get one yesterday and I have one (not quite as bad) again today. Maybe it is the heat, humidity and rain? I don't know, but I am going to finish my coffee, get up and take some advil and a long shower. Then, it is on to cover as many prelim questions as possible so that I can feel good about renting a movie with Jo tonight. Work starts again tomorrow. I get so much more done when I don't work during the day, but complaining about having a job just isn't right, right?
posted by knit wit | 6/26/2005 08:24:00 AM
Friday, June 24, 2005
After studying for the prelim until 2pm, I decided my reward ought to be going to the recycling center with Jo. It was too hot to be outside driving around in a volvo without a/c. By the time we got home I just felt like I was melting. I guess that's not much of a reward. Tonight is a better reward. We are going out to dinner with Bob and Jodi. A beer and a good meal will hit the spot.
I got through 3 whole prelim questions today! I am just charging ahead with this and kicking any kind of panic aside. At least the material is fascinating. I listened to the new Indigo Girls collection "Rarities" 10+ times today. I can't focus when it is quiet. Will that be a problem for the actual exam? Jeez I hope not.
I should warn readers that I anticipate my blog becoming pretty boring in the upcoming weeks. I apologize now for this and I promise that in August it will return to whatever is considered "normal" for this blog...
posted by knit wit | 6/24/2005 05:58:00 PM
Thursday, June 23, 2005
all I did tonight was read one article, and then I decided to make study schedule for the rest of the days before the prelim. after typing out a schedule the remaining days, and seeing that (smallish) list of days on paper, I proceeded to panic and then shut down. I downloaded a bunch of cool widgets for my dashboard. constructive use of time, eh?
once I filled my schedule with everything I still have to do and saw that it all fits, I felt slightly better. of course, my schedule leaves no time for any fun or goofing off. I swear to god I will not let fear and panic rule studying for this test. I will not pass that way. I need to shake this off.
tomorrow is a new day. I'll get up early and hit the books.
(I'll also go out and buy some kind of natural eye drops. Working on one computer or another for 10+ hours a day is really not great for my eyes. Last summer I thought my sore eyes were from allergies. Now I know it is just from trying to cram work into summertime.)
posted by knit wit | 6/23/2005 10:15:00 PM
to my gray hairs
I see you all the time now. I don't dislike you. I really don't mind that you are there. I believe, afterall, that gray hair (or white hair in my case) and wrinkles are a sign of wisdom and maturity. So, I won't dye you- although my hairdresser suggested this when I last got my hair cut. I won't pluck you out, either. I'm not very vain- I really don't care. Just like I don't care about the wrinkle lines around my eyes. You won't see me wearing eye cream at night. I have one question for you. My question is not why are you showing up all over the place (that can probably be chalked up to grad school), but why you need to be kinky and stick out in strange ways. I've always had very straight hair so finding kinky white hairs sticking out of my head a little weird. I finally found a hair cut I like, but if I keep getting more of you, I'm not sure what my hair will look like.
posted by knit wit | 6/23/2005 06:57:00 PM
Wednesday, June 22, 2005
What are the chances?
We all get email spam. It tries very hard to look like email a person might want to open up. The emails use crazy name combinations and subject headings trying to sound like normal email. Once I got an email from Edgar Allen Poe with the subject "I'm not mad at you any more."
I filter out spam email with the wonderful little app SpamSieve so I don't have to constantly look at emails about viagra and large penises. Every once in a while I look through the folder of filtered spam for anything important.
Tonight I got an email from Irma Grace.
What is odd about that? Well. That is the name I would want to name a baby girl. Irma was my grandmother's name and Grace was my other grandmother's middle name. That was the name Jo and I were set on until my mother told me that not only did my grandmother not really like her name (Irma) but that she made my mother swear that no one would be given that name. That kind of puts a damper on the name Irma, although I still think it is beautiful. (Instead we are going with Charlotte Grace.) (I'm not pregnant or anything- that takes some planning- which I am sure I'll blog about in due time.)
So what are the chances of getting spam from an Irma Grace? I think it is pretty damn weird.
posted by knit wit | 6/22/2005 05:39:00 PM
Tuesday, June 21, 2005
the end of a long day
Well finally I am sitting in front of my computer. Am I making copious notes from the meeting I had with my advisor today? No. Am I studying for the prelim? Nope. I am blogging before I go into bed? Yes. I have a tall glass of water and the apartment is cooling down to a nice chilly sleeping temp thanks to our wonderful a/c.
I feel like I crammed a lot of stuff into today. And my brain is a little on overload. I worked a bunch of hours this morning and crossed a fair amount off of the work to-do list. I had that 2 hour lunch meeting with my advisor. I raced home from that to pick up my BBBS little sister. She got to pick dinner and a movie as her birthday was this past weekend. She picked out frozen pizza, ice cream and the movie White Chicks. Yes, folks, I watched White Chicks. I wouldn't recommend it by any stretch of the imagination, but it had a plot and was more interesting that White Noise. After my little sister (who turned 11 this Saturday) told me no one in her family really remembered her birthday, I found some b-day candles and made her go into living room while I stuck them in her ice cream. She made a wish and blew them out. Everyone ought to at least make a birthday wish with some candles. Especially an 11 year old. 11 seems like such a great age to be.
Then, Jo and I raced off to an actual evening activity/social event! Yes, blog readers, Jo and I, the usual stay-at-home-types went out to see a presentation at Rainbow Community Bookstore by people from Bitch magazine and LiP magazine. It was really great. It is good to get out sometimes, I guess. Even when it means venturing down to State Street, parking and dealing with the crowds of diners and shoppers.
So I think I might start getting up early to work on my own writing every morning. I know I tried this my first year, when I decided that I ought to be getting up at 5am and cranking out tons of academic writing. At the time that self-set standard crippled me for a very long time. This time the decision came more organically. I didn't even decide this because my advisor told me to write more (although I do remember her saying years ago that writing was what academics get paid for doing). I just think I need to be working on stuff more. I've been so caught up in the prelim that when I talked about my own work today it made me realize that I can't let myself get too far away from it. I guess I better go to bed now then. I'll start in the morning with at least typing up some notes or something...
posted by knit wit | 6/21/2005 10:06:00 PM
Monday, June 20, 2005
I'm back in the midwest...
Well I am now back here in Madison. I arrived yesterday morning and spent the day running errands, and then watching some movies with Jo (skip White Noise- it wasn't worth it). I actually unpacked everything from my trip already (this usually takes me days) and put my snazzy new suitcases away (I came home with far more stuff then I left with- highlights include the new suitcases with really nice rims on their little wheels, some ceramic cookware, and some yummy fiddleheads!) I fell asleep at 8:30pm. I was up at 4:30am EST to catch my 6am flight, afterall.
I went back to work today. I wasn't as swamped with emails and things to do as I thought I might be, though. Everything at work was pretty quiet and slow. Just the way I like it.
I just need to get away from Wisconsin (well, actually grad school) every few months, and I also need a Maine-fix twice a year or so. I feel generally refreshed and so much less frazzled. Even about the prelim. Maybe I had to hit sheer panic, and then come out of it into someplace of cool composure (well, not actually composure, but some kind of disassociative survival mechanism). Could I panic again tomorrow? Tonight? It could happen. Whatever it is, it is working for me right now.
And speaking of work I ought to be getting something done. Jo is playing piano, the a/c is working and I am drinking ice tea out of one of our new lovely amber-colored glasses. And I have fiddleheads to eat tonight!
posted by knit wit | 6/20/2005 03:47:00 PM
Friday, June 17, 2005
Tonight we had lobstah for dinner (I like spelling it that way, ok?). It was wonderful! Some truly yummy, yummy food and now I am too stuffed to think about eating anything else (well, there is always room for ice cream). I ate so much food I feel intoxicated.
Here's the lobstah in Dad's lobstah pot. Everyone in coastal Maine has one of these big pots and you can practically buy them at the drug store (well, I don't think CVS sells them but the grocery stores do).
Here's Maryann bent over the lobstah after Dad dumped them out in the sink. She is either trying to eat them, or getting an open-mouth seafood steam facial.
Another amazing element of the meal- my Dad's broccoli and cheese sauce.
And the bowl of shells and stuff at the end of a wonderful meal!
Now I really want ice cream. I think we might have to go across the bridge to Dairy Queen to get some.
posted by knit wit | 6/17/2005 06:45:00 PM
Looney Lagoon is one of those strange local landmarks that has been there forever and is actually pretty creepy. It is on the Old Bath Road between Brunswick and Bath. I've never actually seen anyone stop and look at it, as if it were a tourist destination. I stopped once and looked around a little during high school. At the time the water in the lagoon was pretty low, and I noticed that painted on the bottom of some of the "characters" was "666." Well, this just made the lagoon even creepier. I don't know much more about it. I guess the guy mowing the lawn in the last picture might be the owner/proprietor who lives near the lagoon.
The lagoon in all its looniness:
Another picture showing the variety of "characters" surrounding the lagoon:
Here is the picture with the guy mowing in it. This shows the other side of the lagoon.
I am heading back to the Midwest early Sunday morning. I haven't checked my work email account yet so I'm probably in for a zillion emails on Monday. I've gotten a fair amount of prelim studying done. Not as much as I imagined (I brought some methods books, but I am still on theory) but I am finally getting into the swing of it and while I am developing Reba's Twitchy Eye Prelim Syndrome I am doing pretty OK at remaining relatively calm for now. But, you might not want to be anywhere near me in July. I'm just warning you...
Well dad is home today and is going out to get lobstah for dinner! So, I'll get my butt off the couch now and get in the shower. Enjoy the Looney Lagoon pics!
posted by knit wit | 6/17/2005 07:29:00 AM
Thursday, June 16, 2005
One of the things that fascinates me about small towns is the history that surrounds so many of the houses, buildings and places. And I am not talking only about the kind of history that might wind up in the town's historical society, but the kind of history that intersects with generations of families, town legends, and people's personal history. This history is the kind of history that makes Bath a community- that makes me know the place even 10 years after living here just by driving around.
So, I'll give you an example of a building steeped in such history.
This is the old Henderson's Greenhouse on North Street.
I guess now it is a daycare. When it was a greenhouse, the white structure on the right was the glass greenhouse. I didn't even know all of this history until I had my mom drive me by to take a picture and she told me more.
My Nana had a best friend, Murphy (yes, somehow that is a woman's name. Mom isn't sure if this was her real name or not) who I vaguely remember from when I was little. Murphy, I guess, worked at the greenhouse when it was owned by Mel Henderson. Mom thinks that is maybe how Nana met Murphy. Nana used to get all her flowers for Eastern Star* at the greenhouse. I guess Nana also used to make cookies** for Mel and his boyfriend/partner.
When I was born (near easter), my dad stopped at the greenhouse and made Mel sell him the huge stuffed bunny on display in the window. I remember going to the greenhouse for different things when I was very young. They also had antiques that they sold in the back and I think I used to go their with Grammy (my father's mother) to look at them.
I remember Mel's Greenhouse mostly from high school. Our theatre director, Mrs. M. knew Mel and we would go there to borrow furniture and props for plays. We used to walk through the many back rooms of antiques with Mel and Mrs. M. would pick out different things for our plays.
Well, during my junior year in high school Mel Henderson was shot and killed right in the doorway of the greenhouse by a young man who had worked for him. It was pretty well known in town that the reason for the murder was because Mel was gay. There were never-proven allegations of sexual molestation, and it came out in trial that the murderer was mentally ill.
After that, the greenhouse stayed open for a while, run by Mel's partner. It was closed for years, and now it is daycare center.
I guess that is probably more of a history than most places in Bath have! Tomorrow I'll post pictures of our famous landmark, Looney Lagoon.
* Yes, Eastern Star is truly a creepy Mason thing. My aunt and grandmother were very involved in it for many years, holding offices with titles like "Worthy Grand Martha." The Masonic Temple here in Bath was sold recently (too expensive to heat) and is going to become (Bath's first?) art museum.
** My Nana made cookies for everyone she truly liked. She made especially amazing Snickerdoodles and Ginger cookies.
posted by knit wit | 6/16/2005 07:32:00 AM
Wednesday, June 15, 2005
again, drama with the local paper
Well it seems that once again, the local paper made me come very close to writing another letter to the editor. But, I figured that since I don't live in Bath anymore, and since I just wrote a letter to the editor recently, that someone else could write in or people might think I have no life (I wouldn't want them to know the truth).
Why? Well someone at the paper decided to give the following headline to an article about the upcoming performance of the Vagina Monologues at our local theatre:
"The Vagina Monologues Opens for a One-Night Stand"
What the hell kind of town do I come from anyway? Good god! Well thankfully today, there are two letters to the editor about the sexism of the headline (here is one of them). I'm glad others were also outraged.
It is very cold and rainy here today. I'm happy I thought to bring a long-sleeved shirt and sweater. I spent the day helping mom get her website online. She officially a business owner today! I also spent the afternoon installing Quickbooks on her computer, and trying to wipe viruses and spyware from her PC. That was actually kind of novel, with my imac and ibook I never get to fool around with such stuff! Mom and Maryann are at the dress rehearsal for their dance show that I get to see this Saturday. Dad and I are heading to Fat Boy for dinner and some shopping. Maybe I'll read something for the prelim tonight, like Black Feminist Thought or Feminism & Postmodernism. Otherwise, I'll feel totally useless (academically speaking, anyway).
posted by knit wit | 6/15/2005 04:32:00 PM
ok, I'll play along
Sir Edwin has passed the baton to me...
Total volume of music on my computer:
1855 songs, 5.3 days, 7.89 GB
(Last CD I bought:) New version: "What is the last music you acquired?"
Well, I "acquired" the unreleased (and not as great as the hype surrounding it) Extraordinary Machine by Fiona Apple though bittorrent. The most recent CD I purchased is Ani Difranco's wonderful new album Knuckle Down.
Song Playing Right Now:
"You Come Through for Me" on Uh Huh Her by Polly Jean Harvey.
Five Songs I Listen to a Lot:
I have to pick only 5? Okay, I'll try.
"Rise Up" on All that We Let In by the Indigo Girls
"Sitting" on Tea for the Tillerman by Cat Stevens
"Up Up Up Up Up" on Upx5 by Ani Difranco
"The Hunter" on Homogenic by Bjork
"Recoil" on Knuckle Down by Ani Difranco
"The Big Sky" on Hounds of Love by Kate Bush
oops- that was 6. I can't delete any one of them. oh well.
I'll pass this on to these 5 people:
the maryann show
posted by knit wit | 6/15/2005 01:10:00 PM
Tuesday, June 14, 2005
a new look
Knit me more time finally has a new look. It took me a while to find a template that didn't look terrible, wasn't very common, and wasn't too boring. I think this one is pretty nice. What do you think?
Because I spent so much time tweaking this template today, I won't actually post. I have a post mostly written about my reunion this past weekend, so I'll post those details tomorrow.
posted by knit wit | 6/14/2005 07:31:00 PM
Monday, June 13, 2005
seen near the ocean
I spent a relatively productive morning studying at the local library. It isn't air conditioned, but it had wireless internet. I tried not to be too distracted by the internets, and surprisingly resisted the urge to blog. Tonight we are heading to Freeport for dinner and LLBean. I guess I need one of those LLBean travel bags for my toiletries instead of the plastic ziplock bag I've been using for months now.
I meant to post these pictures last night when I posted the other pictures from Reid State Park.
Here is some of the local scenery. An old boat and lots of lobstah traps (they are not in the ocean b/c the red tide is bad here right now).
And here is one that isn't really anything to look at, but it is pretty funny. On our way back from Reid State Park, Maryann and I went to pick up a friend of hers from college whose family has a summer home in that area. We had to find "Moore's Turnpike" and below is the turnpike in all its costal-Maine glory.
posted by knit wit | 6/13/2005 02:02:00 PM
Sunday, June 12, 2005
Yesterday Maryann and I went out to Reid State Park. It was very hot in town (in the 90s) but the coast was cool and misty. Of course there were people swimming- both in the warmer lagoon and the (much) colder ocean. I walked alone the edge of the ocean for a little bit, but it seems I have lost my ability to stand the freezing cold water.
Pine trees at the ocean's edge. It must be difficult to be a pine tree so close to the rocks and the ocean, but they do a wonderful job.
It was very foggy at the beach. Thick fog that made the islands and parts of the coast vanish from time to time- it made me think of the movie The Fog.
posted by knit wit | 6/12/2005 07:58:00 PM
a thousand words
This picture totally sums up the differences between my sister and I. (This was taken at Reid State Park yesterday- more pictures of that, as well as a post about my reunion last night are coming soon.)
posted by knit wit | 6/12/2005 04:12:00 PM
Saturday, June 11, 2005
Bath is quite a bit more busy than usual this weekend, with hundreds of Morse High School alumni in town. Last year was a little more festive, with the parade and all, but this year businesses still have "welcome home alumni" signs in their windows.
I went shopping with my mother yesterday for a dress for her to wear to her reunion (it is her 35th). I am really not the person to take dress shopping as I generally don't like dresses and by the time we found one, and then went shoe shopping I was too disgusted with the tiny little high-healed things to even pay attention to them. So she has a pretty cool dress and still has to get shoes today. She and I also have a bet going that everyone wears dresses to their reunion. I am wearing my "conference" outfit as I am very comfortable in it. It is (*gasp*) pants and a linen shirt. I even wear (*gasp*) a necklace with it. I know Jony is wearing cords and birks. I wonder if everyone else tonight will be all glammed out. That would really be funny if that were the case.
So today we are heading to a huge yard sale. Bowdoin College collected all the stuff students left behind after moving out and is selling it for charity. Should be kind of interesting, I guess. And then the rest of the day I'll get some reading done and then head off with Jony for the reunion later. I'll take pictures with my dad's camera and post them later. For now, here is a picture of the inside of my Nana's house which was sold last week. It was in the family for generations so it is very strange to drive by it. This is the kitchen, the cabinets were made all by hand by a relative who used to work on cabinets in ships. This is not how I remember it as it is all cleaned out and empty. I have a wonderful picture somewhere of my Nana ironing in her kitchen, totally unaware I was taking a picture. When I find that one I'll post it to.
posted by knit wit | 6/11/2005 06:45:00 AM
Thursday, June 09, 2005
"breath easy- you're in Maine*"
I'm in Maine now. I am so very, very sleepy that I don't think I'll blog much. My flight left at 6am, which meant getting up at 4am. My plan was to sleep on the plane, but for some reason I was wide awake so I decided to get some work done on my laptop inflight. I was literally the only person not sleeping. The guy next to me was snoring and I was typing away.
I spent the day catching up on gossip, and finding out about the new buildings and things that spring up around time. On the way home from the airport we got lunch at my favorite place, Fat Boys and I thoroughly enjoyed my lobstah roll and onion rings. Fat Boys is right across Route 1 from BNAS (Brunswisk Navel Air Station) which was on the recent base closure list. Planes are still flying in and out but there is a much uncertainty about what the closure will do the the area's economy. And Bath Iron Works has cancelled its 3rd shift, and laid off some employees (and there are rumors that more will be laid off with each pay day). Its just very uncertain times around here. But, of course the Wal*Mart is expanding into a Super Wal*Mart-- Wal*Mart just thrives on hard times like these...
I am so happy for the change of scenary. Whenever I have a chance to get out of Madison, I always need to sooo very badly. This time I am just feeling a little too frantic and less in control of everything on my plate the past couple days for my taste. Work has been crazy and finishing up all I wanted to slowed down a little with my swollen hands last weekend. It's always something, isn't it? I seriously need to lie in the cool sand on the beach tomorrow night for a little while (and the weather is beautiful so hopefully lots of stars will be out). The ocean, the sand, and the stars are just so focusing and grounding.
Maybe I will try to do some more work before I go to bed? No, maybe I'll just do it in the morning.
*This is on a huge poster in Portland airport. I must take a picture of it on my way back to Wisconsin. It is very new looking, but the family pictured in it looks like they have stepped out of the early 80s. Did I mention I packed my digital camera, but not the extra battery and charger?? Duh. I'll have to borrow my dad's and sister's while I am here...
posted by knit wit | 6/09/2005 08:37:00 PM
Wednesday, June 08, 2005
I was having a pretty crappy, busy day at work today when I got an email from Jo titled "blog for my girl." I opened it and found this wonderfully brilliant blog, the Rubber Nun! Check out her nun photos- very, very funny stuff.
See, Jo knows I have this fascination with nuns. I can't really explain it. I remember when I was about 12 I wanted to either be a truck driver or a nun and I used to tell my parents that (to shock them) all the time. I love all movies that have to do with nuns- the Sound of Music would be my favorite but also A Nun's Story, the Devils of Loudon, Nunsense, hell, even Sister Act cracks up.
I would blog more but I am tired, and I still have to pack. The next time I blog it will be from Maine (the way life should be)!
posted by knit wit | 6/08/2005 06:19:00 PM
Tuesday, June 07, 2005
How much do I dislike this template for my blog? Very, very much. But I dislike blogger's other quick and easy options more. At least I added back the links (from google's cache).
I decided that things happen for a reason (well I didn't just decide this, but rather I reminded myself that this is the case) so I will be re-designing some totally new look for my blog. The thing is that will take me a few days of sneaking it in between travelling and work. So, knit me more time, you'll have to hang tight until there, looking rather murky and green in the meantime.
I am also trying not to panic tonight about how painfully swollen and sore my hands (and now my feet) are and how that makes working on a computer for any long stretch of time uncomfortable. That just doesn't work very well for all I have to do right now. I went to the doctor today and they took a ton of blood from me to test for thyroid issues and other stuff. Fun. Nothing to worry about, I guess. I'll have the results tomorrow. And I have a very low dose diuretic prescription to help the swelling go down. Having to visit the bathroom all the way on the other side of the huge building I work in tomorrow (while sitting through 3 meetings) will be just freakin' great.
posted by knit wit | 6/07/2005 10:41:00 PM
Monday, June 06, 2005
Oh the horror!!
I deleted somehow (I think it was blogger's fault) my self-designed blogger template!! Ugh! And what is worse is that I save everything like a crazy, but did I ever bother to save even once the code for a template I have been tweaking for the past 8 months to get it just the way I wanted? No. Of course not.
So, I am piecing it all back together from google's cached source code, which is really pushing my html skills.
Hang in there, hopefully Knit Me More Time will look more like herself tomorrow.
posted by knit wit | 6/06/2005 10:14:00 PM
six feet under
Tonight was the bittersweet season premier of the last season of Six Feet Under. Yeah, there are other TV shows I enjoy watching, but this was the first and only show that I (a) watched from the very first season, that (b) I would race home to see after work, and (c) that makes me cry at the end of every episode (and usually during most episodes as well). I don't know what it is. I just think the show is brilliant- I love the Fischer family, all of their issues, and all of their growth over the past years. The actors are incredible- real. The show should have won awards, and it didn't. Instead for the last season it got moved to Monday night instead of its usual Sunday spot. The only other show that comes close is Dead Like Me, but they just cancelled that too. So, I'll look forward to every Six Feet Under this season, and I'll have to own it (as well as the 2 seasons of Dead Like Me) on dvd.
I am typing using an ice-pack as a wrist rest. My hands have been getting all swollen, and alternating between painful and prickly-numb lately and I don't know why. Even having them at desk-level makes all the veins pop out in a kind of freaky way. It could be the heat, it could be bad circulation but it has gone on for too many days now so I am seeing the doctor tomorrow about it. It makes computer work and writing kind of hard. This leads me to a confession. I didn't study for the prelim today. Yikes. Well, I thought about it, and that really does count- although only in terms of emotionally preparing myself for the thing- it doesn't actually count for cramming any knowledge into my head.
posted by knit wit | 6/06/2005 09:03:00 PM
Sunday, June 05, 2005
This Thursday morning I will be on my way to Maine. I originally wanted to fly into Newark, NJ and drive up to Maine with Jony, but that planned assumed that tickets to Newark would be cheaper than flying to Maine. This was not the case. It is, in fact, about $550 to fly to Newark and only $300 to fly to Portland. Strange, I know- who would choose to fly to Newark over Maine (especially at that price)?
So, Jony and I won't have our road trip. I am kind of sad about that, but I will get to see her while I am home. We already have plans to go out for food and beer before our reunion even begins. I wish that I could actually take 10 days off from everything, but that's just not possible. But, it will be a much needed break from work, and before I leave I am frantically finishing up some lingering projects... just the prelim will be left (did I just type "just the prelim?" hahaha that's a freakin' riot). I'll spend a few hours a day at the Patten Free Library in this room I always used to study in when I was a kid (and I used to be extra slow shelving books in there when I worked there as the room is so old and beautiful). See that table by the window overlooking the river? That's where you'll be able to find me.
I promise to blog a lot. I love the way Nina blogs about her trips, so I will try to pay homage to that with some photos of my activities and meals in Maine. I'll try to take pictures at my reunion and post some of those too with details. Here are some of my other plans while I am in Maine.
- I'll eat a bunch of meals at my favorite place for Lobstah rolls- Fat Boy's. I'll also try to have plenty of their mocha-add-banana frappes and onion rings.
- I'll eat as much as I can at home. Dad said he'll make fiddleheads, broc&cheese, scallops and maybe even some lobstah.
- (enough about eating) My sister and I want to drive up to Fort Fairfield in Northern Maine too see our grandfather who I haven't seen in quite a while.
- Sinking my toes into the cool sand at Popham Beach, at night. Jony and I always love to go to the beach at night and just sit and talk.
- Maybe the Montsweag flea market on the weekend (my Nana used to have a table there). Maybe I'll go through the old photos at the antique stores downtown. Maybe they'll also be a trip to some of the used books stores on Route 1? Those things will all depend on time, I suppose.
Okay- back to work now. Since I have been posting what I am listening to a lot lately-- right now I have on an itunes mix I made of all Cat Stevens and Simon & Garfunkel. It is wonderful. There are songs coming on that I never think to listen to usually (like Rubylove, Somewhere They Can't Find Me, Overs etc...)
posted by knit wit | 6/05/2005 10:56:00 AM
Saturday, June 04, 2005
to me from some guy named Michael
Jo and I just got back from picking up our veggies (we got pea vines, asparagus, arugula, salad, green onions and blue potatoes, but that's beside the point). While we were picking up our box, a man was also picking up his box. He approached us and told us that he noticed the bumper stickers on our car and wanted to give us something. He wrote on the back of a postcard that is was to me from Michael. He told me he was trying to sell these pieces of his "artwork" on State Street but had only sold 2 so he was now giving them away. He said someone warned him it could be perceived as threatening to the president. I took it and was actually kind of surprised by it.
Hey, I'm one of the first people to call Bush the most terrible name I can think of when I happen to hear his voice on the radio or see him on TV. Hell, I even have a talking Bush doll stuffed in a desk drawer, and Jo and I contemplated buying the Bush pinata for election night. But, this was kind of out there. It is a postcard with a yellow ribbon drawn on it. The ribbon says "$upport our president!" and the ribbin is tied like a noose. Interesting... but needless to say, I don't think I'll be waving it around anywhere as it could be considered more than a little messed up.
It reminds me of a t-shirt that a woman my sister used to work for sent to me completely unprompted. It said "Ban Abortion- We Need More Troops." Clever, yes, but I haven't worn it anywhere. My car may be covered with the kind of bumper stickers that either make people wave at us, or wave their middle finger at us, but these are just a little too out there.
posted by knit wit | 6/04/2005 01:33:00 PM
how the summer is shaping up...
I am starting to really get into the prelim studying now. I decided starting with theory and methods is not only motivating (as I love it) but also is logical as it serves as a foundation for everything else. I am finishing up some of those stray projects so that very little else will be taking up my time.
So, the prelim is taking over my summer. I know other things will fall by the wayside- following politics, watching movies, knitting for more than a few rows a day, organizing my files (currently I just have 3 full draws of notes and articles that need to be sorted and filed and that's not happening any time soon) etc... I also want to start re-reading some Virginia Wolf and Gertrude Stein, but that will also have to wait until August. I need to keep possible distractions at a minimum.
But I have other plans beyond prelim studying. I really do. Here are some of my no-pressure summer goals:
- Canoeing as much as possible. At least an hour or 2 every other day, or every day if the weather is nice.
- Cooking great food with our Harmony Valley farm share. I am thinking about rhubarb muffins this weekend.
- Keeping my kitchen herb garden alive.
- Learning how to cook a mean Squash Curry.
- Slowly and steadily working on my cotton cardigan.
- Utilizing everything I know about taking care of myself physically and emotionally to try to curb the damage that could be done by prelim-related stress.
And if I can make it to August 2nd, there is plenty to look forward to the rest of the month- my sister is planning on visiting, I'd love for my parents to visit, the conference in Philly and seeing some great people while I am there.
posted by knit wit | 6/04/2005 08:50:00 AM
Thursday, June 02, 2005
I am fascinated by urban exploration. When I lived in NY I was always drawn to the oldest details of the city- the oldest houses and taverns, the old subway trains and lines, the smooth cobblestone streets on the lower West side and the old houses found below West 4th St. I also love abandoned places others might dismiss as kind of creepy- abandoned buildings and cemeteries. On my commute to school I passed the entrance to the abandoned King's Park Asylum. I used to stop there and wander around the huge grounds and peak in the windows of the buildings. Pilgrams State and the soon-to-be torn down Danvers State are among my other favorite modern ruins. It is some combination of the history, the architecture, and the atmosphere that draws me to these places.
Anyway, there isn't much in the way of urban exploration here in Madison. The old brick factory near us is actually being used to store supplies for the town- so it isn't really abandoned nor very run down. Who would have thought our canoe would bring us some semi-urban exploration opportunities?
We have been exploring the various branches of Starkweather Creek. On Friday, we took the creek in one direction, and ended up going under East Washington in some very freaky, and not so pleasant tunnels. It was actually pretty terrible. I still think that beyond that section, the creek lets out into a pond in a park up by Wright St, but we were too creeped out to try to get there, so with the rushing traffic above us, we turned around and called it a day. There's something about looking up from your canoe to see a MacDonald's that is just really, really wrong.
On Monday, we headed out on the creek in another direction- toward a farm. We had been up that way before, but not very far. Here's a little photo chronology of our adventures...
The trip began as most do- some wonderful paddling under the bridge near our place.
We noticed that the baby ducks we've seen on the creek for the past couple weeks are growing- although they are still staying close to their mother, who yelled at them to move away from us soon after I snapped this photo.
Turtles are a frequent site on the creek.
We headed down one not-very-wide branch of the creek (I had seen from the very cool satellite feature in google maps that there was a rather large pond in that direction). Well, we ended up in the middle of a large field, with a smallish tunnel in front of us. As we approached, a flock of birds started to really freak out, flying around us and making all kinds of noise. What was odd was that usually when a flock of birds is disturbed, they'll just fly away- these birds stuck around us in a fashion similiar to Tippi Hendren in The Birds. It was unsettling to say the least. I don't know what they were so upset about. Here is a shot of the tunnel we were thinking of going through. We decided that since the birds kept flying through the tunnel (see them?), there was no way we were going through it.
So, we got out of the canoe, and decided to lug it up over the tunnel to the other side. The birds still continued to freak out over head.
Instead of dropping the canoe in on the other side, I decided to walk to check out if doing that was going to be worth it. The field we were in was filled with old rusty farm equipment and was really kind of creepy and cool, not unlike the old abandoned buildings I love.
I walked for a ways and found this beautiful, remote pond.
But, then before the pond I noticed not only a huge "no trespassing" sign, but a wall across the water. We decided that was way too much to bother with so we put the canoe back in the little creek-branch, and paddled away.
We followed the main branch of the creek further. I think this is really somewhere near Fair Oaks Ave, but from the wilderness around us, it is really hard to tell we aren't out in the middle of nowhere.
Beautiful lillypads have sprung up everywhere. But, no frogs. We see turtles everywhere, but no frogs.
Alas, we reached the end of this branch of the creek too soon. Whoever put these little, super-tiny tunnels under whatever highway that is wasn't thinking of the paddlers who might come by! Thwarted, again, we turned around and paddled the whole way home. Next time I think we'll try going back out to Lake Monona, and if the speedboats stay away, maybe we can make it to the Yahara river.
posted by knit wit | 6/02/2005 06:48:00 PM
Wednesday, June 01, 2005
time keeps movin' along...*
Yes, it is 12:24 am and I have officially missed a self-imposed deadline with my advisor by 24 minutes. Have no fear though, the draft is nearly done, I just need to tweak the conclusion a little bit more before sending it. It will be sent off by 1am, only 1 hour late.
This is the latest I have been up in a while. I am mostly an "early to bed, early to rise" person, so presently I am kind of jittery from coffee. And listening to Janis Joplin.
Okay back to writing... Sending these things off for scrutiny is always a little frightening.
*from the opening of Kosmic Blues- and now the song has just ended. now Dar Williams is on: "when did you cave into this role that you were cast in..."
posted by knit wit | 6/01/2005 12:24:00 AM