Monday, October 24, 2011

Go Tea Party!

Who would have ever believed I would be routing for the tea party and agreeing with them on so much?

Being Co-opted
The Tea Party started with some great ideas about getting government out of our personal affairs and getting rid of the corruption that is rampant in Washington.

Shortly thereafter, they had nut-cases like Michelle Bachman and Sarah Palin tagging on their crazy agendas and soon, I found there was little or nothing in common I had with the whole movement.

Now, with the Occupy Wall Street movement promoting some of their most cherished ideas again, I'm starting to see commonalities again.

My biggest concern is that with the power of the almighty dollar, the movement will be taken over again, and big banks will rule the agenda. I'm hopeful that with a more condensed and powerful message, the Occupy Wall Street people has more likeliehood of success.

We shall see.

Rhinebeck 2011
I spent a few short hours at the New York State Sheep & Wool Festival last weekend.

Mostly, I wanted to try and see some of my friends there, and I also ended up buying a book and some yarn.

I met up mostly with some of the guys from the Men's Spring Knitting Retreats. Good friend Jeff and I bounced around the fairground checking out fiber and meeting up with some of the other guys.

As part of that, I also got a chance to purchase Alasdair's "Extreme Double-Knitting" book and have him sign it.

That's Jeff on the right and some other Alasdair fanatic between us.  I don't usually do this, but I read Alasdair's book from cover to cover.  He is so adept at this technique and his book is the most comprehensive resource on any specific resource that I've ever read.  I will plan on designing a double-knitting project of my own.

The yarn I bought was irresistible...

This is a wool/mohair blend, so the base yarn is soft and beautiful to begin with, but the irresistible part was the dyeing that this dyer does.  It's Persimmon Tree Farm yarns, and her work is spectacular.  While I'm not sure what I'll do with this fantastic yarn, I am sure that I will be ordering more of this yarn (if I can figure out how to order yarn from her).

Current Knitting
I mostly worked on the honeycomb blanket this past weekend. I've finished over two rows of hexagons so far, but I don't have a photo to post.

In anticipation of a cold Winter in Edmonton, I have also started working on a fun little balaclava-like hat

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Occupy My Mind

With all the problems I see with our society today I often wonder if I was naive or ignorant when I was younger, or whether the current situation with government and finances is just a lot more dire than it used to be.

Occupy Wall Street
I love this movement. I'm thrilled to see that people are pissed off enough to camp out and protest and make clever signs.

The organizers of the movement have done an excellent job of distilling a very complex issue down to it's basic concepts...simply that corporate greed and government corruption are ruining this country and it won't be tolerated any more.

There was a recent GAO audit of the Federal Reserve, which clearly states that there is massive conflict of interest (if not outright corruption) within the ranks of the board members of the Fed.

Read this - GAO Finds Serious Conflicts at the Fed - Newsroom: Bernie Sanders - U.S. Senator for Vermont - and tell me it doesn't make your blood boil.

And with Republicans insisting we need LESS restrictions on banking and corporations, I'm surprised there aren't pitchfork-wielding citizens storming the House of Representatives.

I did send my congressman a terse, but well-phrased e-mail.

Current Knitting/Spinning
I've been working on a couple of things. I've done a bit more spinning of the Ultima Merino, because I can't wait to see how the resulting yarn turns out. The fiber is unlike anything I've ever spun before and I'm hopeful the yarn will be amazing.

I've also knit at least three stitches on my current sock project - I know...but in my defense, lately, when I'm not working, I'm sleeping or eating...even on my flights.

Finally, I have been enjoying some leisurely knitting of the honeycomb blanket when I'm home.



As you can see, I am doing continuous rows of hexagons instead of creating each one separately. This allows me to not have to keep doing figure-8 cast-ons and Kitchener stitch grafting at the top.

Readers' Comments/Questions
Thanks to everyone who either commented about missing my posts or sent me personal e-mails. Work has been brutal, but it seems to be getting better and I think I'll be able to both knit a bit more and blog more too.