Knit 2 Par 3

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Public Service Announcement

I had a lot of conversations today about dating: the problems of dating when you are young and poor and starting out in the world; the problems with dating when you are forty something or sixty something or after a long relationship; both hetero- and homosexual dating. I was quite a lively dater in my youth, but as that was so long ago I had no useful informaton to offer anyone. Until now.

Right away I found a dating service for golfers called, you guessed it, Date a Golfer. Unlike what I've heard about other dating services (mostly from the woman down the hall from me at my office) these folks seem to be posting their own pictures and true biographies. You can also search for folks up to age 100, further proof that either golf is good for you, or that if you keep up with the golfing you will end up alone and lonely.

While I could find no online date-a-knitter resources, I was happy to find scientific proof that 99% of thinking women were were secretly thrilled when, upon opening the Mystery Date door, there was the dud.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

And he was so young, too.

Death comes to us all, even golfers. Yesterday there were many obituaries for golfer Byron Nelson who died at age 87,654, but my favorite one was in this church newsletter. I am confused about why this church article and so many others makes reference to the man's nickname being "Lord Byron". Certainlyby all accounts, church or otherwise, it sounds like he was a gentleman, but has no one read any biographies of the original Byron? This is the guy who was described in 1812! as "mad, bad and dangerous to know"!

I am going to try some home remedies on my hands: two posts in one day, I really need to knit.

I can't knit, but I can dream

The knitting hiatus is an excellent time to assemble a long list of projects that you really, really, really will make once you get back on the sticks. Right near the top of the list is some golf club covers, for my new clubs, using this pattern I found on the Knit Like a Pirate link from the Yarn Harlot. Although I am not a pirate, I do like swag, particularly golf swag.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006


Looks like I am heading towards the knitting disabled list due to some carpal tunnel syndrome. I blame my enthusiastic efforts at competition sock knitting for this Sock Wars game. Its kill or be killed, even in knitting.

Enjoy this nice knitting movie!

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Please Don't Try This At Home

At the knitting group last week, it was suggested that I may sometimes be - judgemental about the knitting projects of certain members. Me! It's true. I think there are some things best not knitted. Or worse, crocheted.

Example number one is this knitted garden. When I saw the link I was looking for the garden part, with some flowers or even rocks, not just the cutesy rodents.

I also think you should only knit food if you are doing it for a toddler's kitchen set. Here is some very nice sushi, some pizza, and a fine Fiesta Ware tea set. That's okay, just don't ask me to admire it or to knit any for you.

For some reason, I feel more forgiving about knitted organs. The knitted uterus could also double as a hat, I think, which makes it useful. But in general, I think no one should ever, ever, ever knit a vibrator cover and one with googly eyes too! Keep it in your underwear drawer and it won't get cold. Believe me.

Knitting is craft. You can use knitting as a medium in creating art, but if you do I hope you are trying to say something bigger than look at this carrot I knitted with orange yarn.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Home Improvement

To the friends who are getting a new roof on their house tomorrow - we should have thought of this. I have enough leftover yarn.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

It's Magic!

On top of everything else that went wrong for me today, my golf outing was cancelled for next week. I had great fantasies of really phenomenal playing at the Fancy Pants Country Club. In my expert Magical Thinking I saw myself shooting, well, less than 150 I will tell you that!

I am taking a little break from the Majolica Sweater currently on the needles, having miscounted the stitches in the graph and causing what looks like an obviously unintended swirl. I am faced with the age old knitter dilemma: should I frog it, or pretend that the pattern is supposed to look that way? I find that if I put it back in the knitting bag, it may just correct itself, or else I won't notice it a second time. That's magical thinking applied to knitting.

Speaking of. Could this be a real book?

Monday, September 18, 2006

Club Hopping

I totally glossed over the fact that I bought a whole big set of clubs the week before last. I am quite excited about them, they look real impressive arranged nicely in my bag by the door. You can't help but notice them, all perky and shiny, big to small, all there.

But what do I do with them? Why are there so many? Like knitting needles, what you do with the clubs seems to have something to do with gauge. I found this helpful site that sort of gives a golf gauge: the bigger the club, the further the ball goes when you hit it. Tragically, and just like knitting, this site is peppered with the "it depends" caveat: everything depends on the skill of the stick holder and not the shiny clubs, not the shoes, not the silky yarn, not the hip pattern.

I am playing golf at Fancy Pants Country Club next Tuesday as the guest of a work friend. I believe this is a place that will certainly have a Youthful Cart Attendant and possibly a locker room with some nice toiletries. I have a nice outfit, and a set of clubs, and I'll get some balls. I found a whole load of tiddly winks by the garbage so I have a lifetime supply of ball markers now.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Panic! At the Knit Out

Em and I went to Knit Out New York today at Union Square Park and almost lost our lives in in a mosh pit of demented acrylic yarn users in pursuit of free needles.

We've been to quite a few of these over the years, and we have a technique for making sure we get all the swag we can as fast as possible. We stand at the furthest south east corner of the park on a wall and take a panoramic view of the happenings. This time we saw the masses were forming in a swarm going clockwise around the event. Our strategy is to always go against the crowd. It involves some upstream elbowing, and stepping on some tootsies, but it's effective.

I was lucky enough to get a picture of the mosh pit forming at the Clover Needles table, above. You can already see the crowding and jostling. We just had to run over to see what the commotion was about. Was the Yarn Harlot early for her appearance? Did Teva Durham just stroll by to say hi? Could it be Amy Singer hoisting the Boobie Flag in one of her pretty Big Girl sweaters? We shoved aside over two Bridge 'n Tunnel sisters wearing matching Martha's Prison Ponchos to find free size 17 clover needles flying out of a box into the overheated, scarf wearing crowd.

To give you some comparison, this is like being in a crowd where someone is throwing #5 fairway woods. These are big, heavy needles - you could use them as tent pegs. And there was so much acrylic yarn in these scarves and ponchos as the crowd grabbed and punched you could hear the garments squeak. Am I a yarn snob? You betcha. Except if it is used in craft items, like golf club covers or this:

In spite of the pushing and shoving, you could see that the mass manufacturers were trying to showcase their more "upscale"yarns. Lion Brand, for example, has put out a line of merino and 13% cashmere wool. It doesn't have the hand of, say, Debbie Bliss Cashmerino which is 12% cashmere, but at the price it would make a nice kids hat or scarf.

Also of interest was the publishers booths, at which I got to thumb through a new Vogue mini-book on gloves and mittens and that aforementioned Big Girls Knits book . I didn't know what to make of a new book called Never Knit Your Man a Sweater (Unless You've Got the Ring!) in which the promotion exhorts you knit small projects so as to "make sure you don't commit more time than he's worth". If asked, I would have suggesed: Never Knit Your Man a Sweater (Unless He'd Wear a Kaffe Fasset Pattern or Else You'll Die of Boredom!).

We did get to see Stephanie McPhee, the Yarn Harlot, as we were leaving and she was getting out of her car behind the stage. She was being filmed and had a crew with her and she looked a little tired. I wanted to yell - Hey Stephanie! Look out for that Mosh Pit!

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Golf Merch

I bought this tee shirt today, but I can't wear it out of the house. It's even too bad for pajamas. I will have to give it away as a gift.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Mainely Stuff that Wouldn't Look Good in My Life

Wouldn't be a Maine vacation without buying or coveting things that don't fit into my real life. I've learned to be as coveteous as I want, but to leave the money at home.

Nancy and Brendan went to Maine Cottage one day and came home with a catalog and a lamp. The catalog had beautiful and usual colors and fabrics; my favorite is a fabric called Fern Leibowitz. Remember? Fern died tragically in a kiln explosion at her all-girls college. I hope it wasn't while making that lamp.

Last year I coveted, and purchased, a lot of roving and top for spinning at Halcyon. I did teach myself to spin, but it took a lot of red wine to get into the groove. I spun enough for a few hats, but it's a lot of work. I also unfortunately purchased a whole load of mohair that I am still trying to unload. What could I have been thinking?

I also coveted Camper shoes just like this pair, but with patterns that looked like a heart when you put your feet together. I was feeling lovey that day, I guess. I got that lovey feeling back when I looked at the Camper website today; I may go back and get those shoes in October when we go to Maine for Canadian Thanksgiving.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Mainely Golf

Well, before we get to the talk about golf we played in Maine I'd like to report that I got a set of clubs today. A whole great big set, with two hybrids, a whole load of irons and woods and two hybrids and a pitching wedge. Alas when we went to the driving range after the purchase I learned that even if you have a full set of clubs, the balls don't hit themselves.

So back to golf in Maine. In spite of the rain, we were able to shoehorn in one round of Par 3 golf and two rounds of Big Golf. Finding the time for golf on vacation made me wonder how I am supposed to find time for golf in real life. Golf takes time: we got up and out early when I could have been rolling around in bed; it takes up the whole day when we could have been lolling around on the beach; and you have to take a nap afterwards, and you are too tired for any rolling or lolling of any kind. How do I fit this in with work, home and children? Less knitting, for one. No Victorian Novel reading of any kind.

We played the par 3 course at Merriland Farms for a little warm up at the beginning of the vacation. In retrospect we should have started out right away with Big Golf, but I was lured by the siren call of the breakfast at the little restaurant up the road.

Later that week we played at Cape Arundel Golf Course in Kennebunkport. The website talks about the history of the course, but fails to mention the weird golf crafts in the ladies locker room. There was a bulletin board that had nests made of spanish moss with little chicks in the baskets; if you hit a birdie, you were invited to write your name on a little flag and stick the flag in one of the nests. Brendan reported that the men's room did not have this ammenity. We had to hustle on this course towards the end and skip a hole, but I did have the opportunity to hit a really beautiful shot right into the Kennebunk River. I knew the ball was going to go into the river, but it was such a scenic location, and the ball made such perfect ripples in the still water in the bright sunshine, I didn't mind. I had golforia.

We also saw a similar craft in the ladies room of the Dutch Elm Golf course, which by my account was the better course of the two and the one I'd prefer to play again. This place had a better vibe, and was half the price of Cape Arundel. But most importantly, on the ninth hole there was a walkie talkie nailed to a post, with a menu, and you could order ahead to the club house and get a snack. I had a Jordan Hot Dog, which is bright red and native to the Portland Maine area. I had seen them in the supermarkets but never had one before; it tasted like a hot dog. It sure beat the smushed Snickers bar for the mid round snack, though. And if I had known about the ladies room on the 12 hole, I would have gotten a beer to wash it down.

We played scramble for both our games and I was sorry to say I found it somewhat unsatisfactory. I realize that we would still be there a week later trying to complete the course if we played individually. All of us had holes where our ball was the best shot, so considering the difference in our ability to hit the ball I thought that was fair. I just didn't groove on the group score thing. I know I need to play better and faster so that I am not a menace to others on the course and that is my goal for the spring.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Mainely Yarn

Wouldn't be vacation in Maine without dragging the family to every yarn store in a 150 mile radius of our house. I pray for rain so we can make these trips! And if it doesn't rain, I try to engineer a really bad sunburn for someone and the need to stay off the beach for a day. This year was further complicated by trying to work in four - count'em, four! golf opportunities. Yes, golf interferes with knitting, especially on vacation.

I had mixed feelings about Knitwits in Portland. The store had a great view of the Portland East End Cemetary and was roomy, sunnny and pleasantly arranged, with a very good selection of the usual: a full line of Cascade, and some local yarn like Peace Fleece (more about Peace Fleece later) and Nashua Handknits. On the day I went there was a great sale, with lots of yarn 30% off or more on prices that I thought were already reasonable by New York City standards. I thought wow- this could be the place! Groovy neighborhood, decent selection but...unfriendly. No one said hi when we walked in, and the staff was too busy putting labels on a mailing about the store to tell actual humans about the store.

Now you don't have to kiss me on the mouth but I like a little acknowledgement when you see me. It's hard to tell by looking at me that my pockets are bulging with money and my fingers burn with desire for some hot yarn action. I didn't buy a thing.

Next door was Ferdinand, a great little shop where I did buy something. And the proprietress did everything short of kissing me on the mouth by way of greeting. I bought this nice patch for Brendan who was working on his own crafts on this vacation, not all of them golf related.

Tomorrow - or later this week, depends, since I have to go back to work - detailed description of my trip to Halcyon Yarns in Bath, Maine.