Saturday, June 28, 2008

i am not a number...

I am a free man!!!! Well, I'm not a man...or a number...I digress...The sci-fi/fantasy savvy of you will recognize the title and lead in of this post from the British TV series "The Prisoner", starring Patrick McGoohan...which of course everybody has watched, right? (methinks I hear the sounds of crickets chirping...) Yeah, I didn't know it either...when my husband asked me if I'd heard of it and was incredulous that I hadn't, I inquired when it was broadcast on tv....turns out it was originally aired the year before I was even born, so gee, duh, wonder why.... It's a cult favourite, apparently, with a huge following. Cee's brother has the whole series, let him borrow it and we've been watching it here and there when there's time.

The thing that caught me originally is the opening of the show, when you hear the character tell the "Bad Guys" that they won't get any information from him and said "Bad Guys" say "We hook or by crook"...and this lightbulb went off in my head and I thought "Ah ha!!! That's why I keep getting all these weird search hits on my blog...another mystery solved!" (and now there will probably be even more since I've referenced dialogue, characters and the actor's name) Anyway, the premise of the show is that the lead character is a secret agent (See also "Secret Agent Man") who resigns, but apparently "They" think he knows too much, so he's gassed and wakes up in this place called "The Village", which appears to be this idyllic sort of seaside town but is actually a prison, and he is known only by a number, the number 6, which he keeps telling them he will not respond to, hence the phrase "I am not a number, I'm a free man!!!!" So far my favourite character is this giant white balloon/ball thingie called Rover that is sort of the security's kind of a weird show, we'll leave it at that.

I get a lot of knitting done while we are watching it, let's put it that way....I made another pair of Fetchings. I really do love this pattern, it just goes so fast (I'm not that fast a knitter, and I can usually get them done in a full day) I think I'll keep this pair as I gave the other ones I made last year to my niece.

It's been a long, strange week at Chez Kay & Cee...without going into too much detail, Cee's dad is having continued major health issues, so we've been spending a lot of time at his parents' house. So because I don't have enough going on, and because it's so practical to knit a big, bulky sweater when it's a zillion humid degrees outside, I cast on the Oblique sweater from the Fall 2007 Knitty.

Apologies for the poor quality photo...I don't know what it is with my camera and the colour red. I had to edit this majorly to keep it from looking radioactive. I absolutely love this pattern (even if the lacy lacyness is a bit confounding to me...I keep thinking I've screwed up and should frog, then realize I'm okay) and I've knit about 10 inches of the back so far...I'm using the yarn that was originally for my woman in red sweater, which has gone to the lily pond after almost a year and a half of neglect.

Oh, I also adopted a new motto this week, thanks in part to my sister's last birthday card to me, and also to lack of sleep, time to do my housework, yard work, work work, regular life-type stuff and all that kind of thing:

Appropriate for all situations, don't you think? Now if only I could put a little bubble text that says "let's knit!" under the 'screw everything' I'd be set....or possibly "Let's get pissed! or "Let's trash the place!" or whatever suits your's hoping the next week will be blissfully uneventful, take care everyone, and Happy Canada Day to all my fellow countrymen/women on July 1!!! Happy July 4th to all our neighbours to the south!!!...happy happy for all.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

did you know

that I used to smoke? Well I did. A lot. I was one of those people that actually enjoyed smoking, of those. I wasn't an inconsiderate smoker by any means...if people didn't want me to smoke in their cars or homes or near them, I wouldn't, I'd just go outside and freeze or get rained on with the rest of the social lepers, but baby, I loved me my smokes! I used to wake up in the middle of the night and have to have a smoke before I could go back to sleep, that's how much I loved them, and my smokes, they loved me in return....I never even gave one thought about trying to quit. Ever.

But then I met Cee. Cee doesn't smoke...never fact he gets quite ill around cigarette smoke.....awkward!! When we first met, I still stayed a smoker for a little while (of course, never around him), but when it became increasingly more apparent that our lives were going to be intertwined, I decided I'd better bite the bullet and at least try to quit....notice I'm not mentioning anything about quitting for my health. Well I did quit....over nine years wasn't pretty. Have you seen the commercial with the flight attendant screaming at the passengers on the plane and breaking into crushing sobs as she picks up the phone to page? Well that was me.

I tried cold turkey (anyone remember that movie? It's pretty accurate and funny) at first...I went to my mother, gave her my cigarettes, and said "I'm a non smoker now, you can put these away for me."...and she looked at me with that look that only mothers have, and said "Mmm hmm...ok." I made it almost 6 hours before I (quite logically, to me at the time) thought I should probably kill someone for their smokes. The addiction had me...hard. Luckily for my mum, she'd put my cigarettes where they could be easily reached in the case of my spectacular cold turkey failure, which of course, inevitably happened.

Two months later I tried the gum. I told Cee over the phone that I was quitting, and he said "Uh huh" in sort of an unbelieving tone, which to be honest, kind of pissed me off (it could have been the beginnings of nicotine withdrawal) and I thought, "Do I really want to quit for this guy?!" (still notice I'm not quitting because smoking is so horribly bad for me, but because Cee doesn't smoke) Anyway, I managed to make it through the first 24 unbelievably horrible hours and I knew...I just knew I was going to be successful. And every time I started to think about having a cigarette, I just tried to remember how horrible quitting felt, the shakes, the irritability, the wanting to kill people for their cigarettes, the uncontrollable heaving sobs...and I stayed not smoking. Now the gum (Nicorette Gum, to be specific) can be a double-edged sword....some people cannot stand the taste--I didn't mind it. Some people actually get addicted to the gum--I didn't like it that much. About a month or so after I quit, I stopped chewing the gum. Fast forward to 9 years and some months later and I am still smoke free. I don't miss it really, although I can smell it from about 50 feet away and sniff wistfully at times, and my eyes get all glassy with the fond, fond memories.... I do, however, dream about smoking. All the time...almost every night in fact. It's always the same...whatever dream I'm having, all of a sudden I stop and light up a smoke, and get about half-way through it, feeling absolutely wonderful. Then I panic, thinking "Oh no...I quit smoking...I can't have this!!" Then I look around sneakily and think, "Oh well, it's only one, it doesn't make me a smoker again." and then whatever other dreams I'm having continue. I think I have this dream for at least two reasons; 1. Because I know in my heart if I had even one cigarette, I'd be up to a pack a day in about a week. and 2. at least in my dreams I can still enjoy me my smokes...It truly is a hard addiction to break.

Sometimes I like to think that someone up there sent me my beloved Cee just to get me to stop smoking...and I got a pretty good deal in the trade.

Now on to things knitting and crocheting and fibre related, since it is World Wide Knit In Public Day...or something like that. For me, that's pretty much every day, since I drag my stuff everywhere, but I suppose not everyone is as wrapped up in this addiction as I am. (gee, do you think I've got an addictive personality or what?)

Cee's mum brought me an Avon catalogue a few days ago, pointed to a picture of socks with no toes (Spa Socks, they called them) and said "Do you think you could make me these?" and I of course said "Absolutely!!" and so I found the Pedicure socks pattern on Knitty.

I took some liberties here...she wanted them to wear in bed to keep her heels warm, so I used some baby wool I'd been gifted instead of the recommended Patons Merino, and I went down a needle size. I also ribbed all the way down the leg and the instep, because my MIL has very dainty ankles and narrow feet (lucky wench). She likes them, and they went fast because of the thicker yarn.

Then because I don't have enough projects going, I decided to start a new knitting bag. I'm using the "Mrs. Weasley's Bag of Stitch Witchery" pattern from Charmed Knits. I played around with colours and came up with a combination I thought was utterly brilliant, and I revelled in my cleverness, my ability to create something unique...then I went on Ravelry and found at least two other people had come up with the exact combination...great minds...

This is the centre front panel of the bag, which seems to be going quickly. Something tells me though that the rest of the bag will take me a while, since my right thumb has been giving me some weird pains, so I'm going to try to stay away from the needles and hooks for a while and give the paws a rest...don't know if I'll suffer withdrawals or not.

If you want to take a look at the Pedicure Socks pattern, you can find it a Knitty here.
If you want more info on the book, "Charmed Knits" (projects inspired by Harry Potter), click here.

Monday, June 09, 2008

a head's up...

(Subtitled: "Who the Eff does she think she is, anyway??")

Just a little bitty note to say that I've changed my author name on this blog to Kiki instead of cut down the confusion....if that makes any sense....When I started the blog I didn't want to use my real name so I used the first initial of my name, which is K...phonetically spelled; "Kay"...but then I started leaving comments on people's blogs and such and used my name; "Kiki" (still not my official "real" name) which is what most of my friends and family call me, but it would come up "Kay" as sometimes people weren't sure who I was, and perhaps thought that I was at the least Bipolar, and at the most suffering from Multiple Personality Disorder...which if you ask the people closest to me, they might say the jury could probably still out on that one....

Aaaanyway....I answer to most anything (with a few naughty exceptions), so you can still call me Kay if you want, or Kiki, or Weirdo...whatever gets you through the's allright, it's allright.

Saturday, June 07, 2008


Here I go's H-O-T hot outside! Wasn't I just complaining about all the snow we had? Wasn't I also just complaining that I whine about the weather too much? With the Humidex (that is a fancy way of saying "it's effing muggy!" or "close" as my mum used to say), the temperature today is 42 degrees (somewhere in the neighbourhood of 106 for all the Fahrenheiters)...which is waaay too hot for my aging circus-fat arse. I think I got about twenty minutes of sleep last night, which is more than the dogs had. You'd think, being a relatively smart person (shut up, I am so!) that perhaps I (or 'we', Cee makes decisions sometimes, too) would have turned on that most-appreciated invention called "Central Air" (Did you hear the Halleluiah chorus ring out when you read 'central air'? I did...) but no, our cheap, stubborn old hides refuse to accept the need for air conditioning this soon, after all it's only the beginning of June, for heck's sake....and if I'm honest, I'm not even used to having Central Air ("Ahhh-Ahh" Angels singing) in my house, since where I grew up, nobody has a/c in their house, because when you live close to mountains, you just don't need it, and there's no humidity (it really isn't the heat, it is the humidity that kills you--the cliche is right).

I appreciate all the kind words about the purely evil beehive tea's still working well, so the practical side of me can't bring myself to do away with it...and it's starting to grow on mould.

On a happier front, I completed a crocheted Care Bear, see if you can guess which one. This is for a very special, but usually grumpy boy, who shall remain nameless, although one of his nicknames is Misery Guts:

A fun and relatively easy pattern. Again, the devil is always in the details. In this case, they are done in size 10 thread, with the exception of the eyes & eyelashes, which are felt, so if you aren't comfortable working with the tiny steel crochet hooks, I suppose you could try doing them in felt as well, you'd just have to take an educated guess at the sizes of the nose/foot pads and the tummy symbols. They also have a little red heart on their backsides, which I'm told mimics the actual Care Bears (I was a little bit old for that craze way back when).

When the heat comes, I usually take out the thread and my steelies, and after taking a bit of time to get used to the thin-ness of the thread and the insanely small hooks, I am addicted to thread crochet again, it doesn't take long.

This is by far my favourite bookmark pattern, by the talented Cupcake, and is a free pattern on her blog, Crochetroo. Stop by and see her other creations, she is really gifted.