Needed: Sock Yarn Bits and Bobs -- Contest!

So here's the recipient of the Monster Hat. It looks much better on Zack than I ever could've imagined--so good, in fact, that all his friends out in L.A. are clamouring for Monster Hats of their own. Yours truly has been enlisted to come up with some.

Hence the contest...because I need some more bits and bobs of sock yarn with which to make them, and I figure the best way to secure a wide variety of yarns is to appeal to the generosity of my knitting friends, who I figure will inevitably have some short, odd, hopefully brightly-coloured bits of yarn floating around.

Sock Yarn Bits and Bobs Contest!

Have you got bits of sock yarn left from various projects? A few yards here, a few yards there? Well, that's exactly what I need! Send them to me, I'll reimburse you for your postage, put them to excellent use, AND enter you to win some nifty prizes!

All you have to do is email me at sohopixieATyahooDOTcom and I'll send you my mailing address. Also, you can let me know what you'll need for postage. If you send me some sock yarn before Halloween (that's before October 31, 2008), you will be entered to win one of three cool prizes:

A $25 gift certificate from Yarn Lust
Your choice of any item from ObsidianKitten.etsy.com
Your very own copy of I Can Has Cheezburger ("full of awsum and kittehs")

First-drawn wins choice of the three prizes, second-drawn gets second choice, third drawn gets the last prize. Got it?

So email me now at sohopixieATyahooDOTcom and send me your unwanted bits of yarn that are looking for their forever home!

** The Fine Print: Odds and ends are great, ideally sock or similar weight yarns. Preferably lengths of at least five yards (remember I can't knit with 2-3 inch bits) but short lengths (10 yards and up) are fine. I'm making hats for kids so bright/varigated colours are ideal; however anything is welcome; even fuzzy and/or novelty yarns can be used for the brims. Please note that I am well-stocked with Red Heart/acrylic type yarns, so please keep those at home. Many thanks! **


The Pattern

To Take a Gander At

I've gotten hooked on watching Fringe. (I guess I'm a bit nostalgic for the X-Files. Or something.) So far I like it, especially the vaguely sinister idea of "the pattern" behind all the strange happenings. And lurking behind the pattern of course is the tremendous global conglomerate Massive Dynamic--who just happen to have a brilliant faux(?) website. Very clever, methinks.

I've begun a reversible cable-knit scarf. You can find the free pattern at the lovely 144 Inches of I-Cord.

This section that Isis is so interested in turned out to be just a swatch; I'm working the actual scarf in purple.

The only thing I don't like about it is working so much 1 x 1 ribbing. But it does look lovely, so I guess that's the price you pay for the reversible aspect of it. The cables are only worked every eighth row, though, so that makes it a really easy pattern to knit.

To Cover a Head

Not so exciting, but I did finish something--this little white chenille hat.

To Listen To

A new obsession--The Ricky Gervais Show podcasts featuring himself, Karl Pilkington, and Steve Merchant. I know, I'm a late adopter. The hilarity is beyond belief--and it's great stuff to knit by. If you haven't discovered these podcasts yet, they're available on iTunes.

Manchester phenomenom Karl Pilkington is now so well-known from these podcasts that graffiti featuring his perfectly round head has been found in places as remote as the town in which I grew up--Augusta, Georgia (shown above in a photo by Sir Mildred Pierce). Wikipedia informs me that Augusta's motto is "We Feel Good." Wha--? They couldn't come up with anything more articulate than that? Pretty much sums it up for you, I suppose.


3 Cats, 2 Monsters

Morgan muses.

I got Mr. O'Kitten an early birthday/Halloween present in the form of two little monsters from MintConspiracy. She does special stuff for Halloween and I thought the Mysterious Masked Somethings were too adorable to resist. Her tagline, "So many things you never knew you needed," pretty much says it all. Now Gort will have some more company.

Also tagged under things I never knew I needed--this shirt...

...because it's got cats on it.

Emma looks askance at silly shirts with cats on them...

...while Isis tries to wrap her brain around the concept.

What do you mean it's got cats on it? How do you get them to stay on the shirt? And what if they get hungry? You'd never catch me on a shirt--HA!


I Fell in Love with a City

I saw the following E.B. White passage on the bus yesterday and, as someone who fell madly in love with the city on my first visit back in 1985, it touched me. Mr. O'Kitten was born and raised here, and I moved here in 1990.

In 1948 E.B White wrote this about New York City:

"There are roughly three New Yorks. There is, first, the New York of the man or woman who was born there, who takes the city for granted and accepts its size, its turbulence as natural and inevitable. Second, there is the New York of the commuter--the city that is devoured by locusts each day and spat out each night. Third, there is New York of the person who was born somewhere else and came to New York in quest of something. Of these trembling cities the greatest is the last--the city of final destination, the city that is a goal. It is this third city that accounts for New York’s high strung disposition, its poetical deportment, its dedication to the arts, and its incomparable achievements. Commuters give the city its tidal restlessness, natives give it solidity and continuity, but the settlers give it passion. And whether it is a farmer arriving from a small town in Mississippi to escape the indignity of being observed by her neighbors, or a boy arriving from the Corn Belt with a manuscript in his suitcase and a pain in his heart, it makes no difference: each embraces New York with the intense excitement of first love, each absorbs New York with the fresh yes of an adventurer, each generates heat and light to dwarf the Consolidated Edison Company. . . ."

~ from "Here is New York" (1948), E.B. White

Home Sweet Home

Pet Affection Graph

song chart memes
more charts


Putting Robots in the Mosh Pit

Headline: "Scientists Train Robots to Love Punk Music." I file this under Intriguing. Then again, I like robots. I like punk music. And AI is fascinating.

That's the robot at left.

Mr. O'Kitten was not as impressed, but he isn't as easily amused as I am. However, I maintain that this is scientifically very interesting. And satisfyingly weird.

Last Lazy Days of Summer

Before I say goodbye to summer and hello to fall (my favorite season of the year, by the way), I have a few last pictures of Seaside Park.

I love the wood-shake-covered Borough Hall.

View of the bay and, at far left, the bridge you drive over to get to Seaside.

Stuff you need for summer!

Last sights on the boardwalk...

And some last glimpses of the beach:

So long summer...

...time to snuggle up for fall.


We're Still Standing

I just realized that August marked my third blogiversary. I didn't begin posting with any regularity until the spring of 2006, but still. Times flies by.

This will be the first time since 2003 that I've been in the city on 9/11. We were living here in 2001, as well as 2002 and 2003--before we moved to Michigan. Now we're back in NYC and it is good to be home again. But this is always a hard day.

Mr. Kitten took some amazing photographs that day that I posted here.

Another 9/11 story here.

A bit more about the photo above.


It's a Pretty Big Apple

In case you didn't know, New York City is more than just Manhattan. It's a city of about 8,275,000 people distributed throughout five boroughs whose individual populations (according to 2007 Census numbers) are:
Manhattan - 1.621 million
Brooklyn - 2.528 million
Queens - 2.270 million
Bronx - 1.374 million
Staten Island - 481,613

And here's a really cool map by Very Small Array [go there for more highly entertaining maps and charts--seriously, go now] showing which U.S. states have populations similar to those of each NYC's boroughs.

Well, Mr. O'Kitten always said he wanted to live in New Mexico.


Water Just Like Mom Used to Serve

Many consider the real secret behind New York pizza and bagels to be our water--and New York City water, to the surprise of many non-NYers, is some of the cleanest drinking water around.

And now something new has hit the fridges in our local delis...

Yep, you got it. According to Tap'dNY, it's local, it's honest, and it's "Water Just Like Mom Used to Serve."

"Refills Available at Any New York City Tap."


Jersey Shore Stylins and Good Eats

I've been going down the Jersey Shore for 22 years now, and one of the things that never fails to entertain me is the seemingly endless supply of shore fashion. For example, no one seems to tire of "Italian Stallion" wife-beater tank-tops or airbrush t-shirts. In recent years, there's been a plethora of short-shorts with phrases emblazoned across the rear. Here's a sampling of this year's favorites.

Notably, "Save the Drama for Your Mama."

"I <3 Guidos" is a classic, second only perhaps to "I <3 my Italian Stallion."

If you're "Mike's Girl," you're in luck with these shorts.

Airbrush designs--perennial favorites.

Even yours truly has an airbrush design all her own.

In a different vein, there's the fisherman-themed souvenirs (despite the fact that there are no fishermen here), including a sign that promises, "The flogging will not stop until morale improves."

Of course there's also the more traditional beach fare that you will need for your sand-castle building and your beach-buddy burying.

And let us not forget beach food. For us, the one mainstay that cannot be missed is Maruca's pizza, a Seaside Heights landmark since 1950.

You all know how much I missed eating real pizza while we were in Michigan. Maruca's may not technically be in New York City, but their pies are virtually matchless, and Mr. O'Kitten's family has been enjoying them pretty much since they opened their Seaside pizzeria.

A blissful Mr. O'Kitten.

Can you see how thin, crispy and perfect the crust is? Mmmm...

The other place we must stop at is Kohr's. Mostly I like it for the signs, but they have really good soft frozen custard and ice cream, too.

Mr. O'Kitten especially likes their orangeade.

Mrs. Lillian says, "O'Kitten has more Seaside to come, so stay tuned!"