Thursday, May 26, 2005

The CIA is Visiting...

According to MSNBC, the CIA is conducting cyberterrorism simulations here in Charlottesville this week. (Go anonymous news sources!) You can read about it here.

Last summer I worked for the Vanderbilt University police department. A relatively unexciting job, I did ocassionally get to meet interesting people (these people do not include the tobacco-chewing mysoginist who was obsessed with Batman). My goal, by the end of the summer, was to meet an agent or officer from most of the major government conspiracy-farms (CIA, FBI, DoD, Secret Service). By the end of the summer I had met several Secret Service agents (who should really wear larger jackets to hide their guns), several FBI agents (who, sadly, were nothing like Mulder and Scully from X-Files. Damn TV and its illusions!), and people from a variety of branches in the Department of Defense. Oh, and one guy from the Dept. of Agriculture.

Sadly, though, I never met anyone in the CIA. At least that I was aware of. So now I'm tempted to go find these folks with their little InternetAttack game, and see if I can fulfill my lifelong ambition of meeting a CIA agent.

No, I'm not really serious about that - I have no intention of squirreling out a secret CIA office (something that would surely get me arrested, or at least body-cavity-searched), nor is it my lifelong ambition to meet a CIA agent (who, I'm sure, are nothing like the ones on TV). While it would be a neat experience, it's not something worthy of my tombstone (Here Lies Cathy: She Met An Obscure CIA Agent 50 Years Ago, And Wouldn't Shut Up About It). So no worries; the next update of my blog will not be from prison (or an undisclosable location, where I'm sure they wouldn't let me have a computer anyway).

I'm taking this too far. I should get back to work. Have a good day everyone. Maybe tomorrow I'll guide this back to knitting and talk about yarn-based government conspiracies.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Have Blog, Will...

... Update? Apparently not. :)

Nothing exciting going on right now. Andrew and I went to see Star Wars last week, at the midnight showing on Wednesday night/ Thursday morning. I really liked it. Yes, the acting was less-than-stellar, and the dialogue downright bad, but I don't watch Star Wars for an Oscar-winning screenplay. Episode III definitely gives a new perspective to the original Trilogy, and makes the character of Darth Vader quite tragic. I'm looking foward to the release of all 6 movies in a box set so I can have a Star Wars watching marathon (maybe over 2 or 3 days) to see how it all really ties together.

Knitting hasn't been too exciting lately, although I did finally buy yarn:

This is from Blackberry Ridge. I also bought two patterns from them, one for the Evening in Eden stole (burgandy yarn), and one for the Falling Leaves scarf (green yarn). Because, yes, I need more scarves and shawls.

Of course, I am not working on either one of those things right now.

(Thank you to Jon Stewart and his book for modeling my scarf.)

This is the Chevron Scarf, from Scarf Style, in 5 different shades of purple Koigu. The yarn was originally purchased to make a Charlotte's Web, but I've already got one of those on the needles (in Helen's Lace, naturally), so I decided to put this to other use. What I'm most looking forward to, though, is weaving in all those ends. Oh yeah, someone pass me a darning needle!

While waiting in line for Star Wars, I worked on the second Multi Effects sock:

I'm now half done with the heel flap. No real pressing urge to finish these, as it's pretty warm outside, and I already have a full sock drawer.

I started knitting the cover scarf from Knitting on the Edge, but I couldn't get my cables to cooperate (or I was just being overly negative and sensitive), and I wasn't sure I really wanted that scarf in red, and blah, blah, blah, I frogged it. Then I started the Chevron Scarf. So much for cables.

Monday, May 16, 2005

The Yarn Diet Has Left The Building...

My yarn diet officially ended yesterday. It's now been 5 months and 1 day since I purchased any yarn. Naturally, my stash hasn't shrunk much during all that time.

I haven't bought any yarn yet. Not that the thought hasn't crossed my mind, but I'm just not sure what I want to buy. I haven't been all that interested in my knitting over the last week (I didn't knit at all yesterday), and I'm not sure if it's because it's time to start my Summer Cross-stitching Phase, or if I'm just bored with my mostly-mindless projects (everything I'm working on involves stockinette or ribbing; a bit of a letdown after the slightly more complex FBS). So... I'm debating - do I abandon my current projects and start something complex and cable-y, or do I abandon my current projects and just pick up my cross-stitching again? (Notice the project abandonment theme here.) Meh. We'll see how I feel when I get home tonight. In the meantime, the Yarn Diet continues.

I'd also like to give a big wave to Val, whose birthday was on Saturday. Happy Birthday, Val!

Friday, May 13, 2005

Show Your Tattoo Day

Never someone to pass up the opportunity to show off my body art (so long as I don't have to peel off clothing), I couldn't pass up Nancy's open invitation to participate in Show Your Tattoo Day.

So here are my tattoos:

I got this one during my sophmore year of college, way back in 1999. A bunch of friends were all planning to go just before Spring Break, and I didn't want to miss out on the chance. I'd been wanting a tattoo for a while, and this was the perfect opportunity. This one took about 45 minutes, and is on my back, on my right shoulder blade.

About 6 months later, in October of 1999, I decided to get another one:

This one also took about 45 minutes, and is on my upper right arm. I was originally thinking about an eyebrow ring, but decided it might not look too good on me. That, and I'm reluctant to pierce anything but my ears. The dragon's tail shows under the edge of the sleeve of some of the shirts I wear to work, but I haven't gotten any complaints from my boss yet. I went by myself to get this one, since I was housesitting for a weekend and had a car to use. It was probably more fun to go as part of a group (and I'm glad I did for my first one), but I wouldn't mind going alone again, either.

I'm contemplating a third tattoo, but have no definite plans right now. For now I'm content with the two that I have, and my 10 earrings. ;)

Oh, and I've definitely learned something from this experience. Trying to take a decent picture of your own upper back, even with the help of the bathroom mirror, requires feats of contortion that I never again want to attempt. Next time, I will enlist Andrew's help (even if it means enduring the 10 minute conversation in which he expresses bafflement at why I would want to post pictures of my tattoos on my blog).

Knitting progress has been slow this week. I've started the second Multi Effects sock, and am almost done with the toe of the blue/green sock for Val (and obviously have no hope of completing them for her birthday, which is tomorrow). Hopefully I'll get a bit done this weekend while Andrew is grading exams.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005


Well, almost 2 months after the end date, I finally received my pair of Sockapalooza socks in the mail. It turns out my original buddy waffled on me, so a generous knitter named Marti stepped up to knit me a substitute pair. Thanks, Marti!

I love these socks! They're knitted in Koigu, in the diagonal rib pattern from Interweave Knits. Needless to say, they fit perfectly, and are super comfortable. I couldn't have asked for a better pair of socks to be knit for me. :)

I also finished my Flower Basket Shawl over the weekend while Andrew and I were up in Woodbridge spending Mother's Day with Marcia (sigh, only mere miles from MDS&W). The weekend was a bit long and tiring, but at least I had plenty of knitting time. I need to get some blocking pins and give it a good soaking, but I'm pleased with the way it turned out. Not that I have any idea what I'll do with it. I know I'd never wear it, and can't think of anyone I know who would want it. I'll hang on to it and see if a good recipient appears....

Sorry for the long gap between posts - it was a long weekend, and the week itself has been a bit busy. I hope the rest of the week goes well for everyone. :)

Friday, May 06, 2005

Somewhere Out There...

... a plastic bird has taken flight.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

666... no, wait, 616... no, um...

Well, it looks like 666 is no longer the mark of "The Beast." Check out this article. (I especially love the quote from the Satanist at the end.)

Biblical scholars, rejoice!

[Knitting progress slow. 20 rows to go on FBS, and a foot on the blue Regia sock.]

Sunday, May 01, 2005

The Blog Next Door

Okay, no political or religious rants today, I promise.

Meet my Flower Basket Shawl. No clue what I'll actually do with this when it's done (I'm 90% sure I'll never wear it), but I had a sudden urge to make one, and it's a great way to use up the cotton yarn that's been lingering in my stash for several years. Maybe I'll give it to my mother for Mother's Day. Which reminds me, I should buy her a card this week....

I started a new pair of socks, these with a double strand of Regia (sorry, the color number is downstairs with the yarn). They knit up awfully quick on size 2's, although I'm a bit concerned they'll be slightly too large for the intended recipient. We'll see. The pattern is very simple: k4,p4 for 4 rows, then k 4 rows. I liked the chunky/boxy look the pattern gave, while still having a bit of stretch (which is irrelevant, since I think the socks might be too big. Welcome to my life).

Finally, my first complete Multi Effects sock. I love this yarn. I finished this sock last weekend, and haven't started the second one yet. It's not in danger of becoming a UFO, I'm just realistic about the fact that it's too warm for wool socks now, and I've got other things to knit that are slightly more pressing. (In the meantime, I've started another pair of wool socks for a gift. What was I saying about the weather?)

No pictures of Charlotte, since there's not much to show at present. I put her down to work on the Flower Basket Shawl, which I think was a good idea. I haven't done a whole lot of lace knitting, so the FBS with the thicker yarn on bigger needles will be a good learning experience before I try to continue on with Charlotte. In the meantime, she's resting happily at row 26 with her first lifeline in.

Okay, that's all folks! I'm off to make dinner, and prepare for the return of Family Guy.