sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

February 23, 2006

former students, spreading the birthday out, and singing aloud
posted by soe 2:20 pm

Three beautiful things from the last week:

1. After a bunch of coworkers joined my friend (and former student employee) Jason and me for dinner Saturday night, one of them said that seeing us interact made her want to get in touch with some of her former students.

2. Today, some of my coworkers took me out to lunch to belatedly celebrate my birthday. It’s nice having coworkers who care enough to want to take me out, and it’s nice that I get to make my birthday last more than just a day.

3. At the party we went to at the City Museum Sunday night, they had an ’80s cover band. Suzanne, Chickona, and I are all in our 30s, so we knew the words to far too many songs — and sang them loudly while dancing along.

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February 22, 2006

the advent of the daffodil
posted by soe 4:34 pm

A great column on the etymology of the daffodil, appeared last week in Britain’s Guardian newspaper: Daffy days.

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much like nbc (knitting olympics, stage 3)
posted by soe 11:47 am

knitting olympics logoOver the next five days, I will be flooding the airwaves with information about the Olympics. NBC seems to be all-Olympics all the time. I will try not to be that bad, but we’ve reached the critical mass point where it is necessary to focus obsessively on the end goal.

Remember the four little mousie socks I was competing to finish? Well, progress has been slow.

One little bootie is now sitting done, sans ears, eyes, and whiskers, and in need of sewing up. One little bootie has the ankle done and needs to move on to the foot. The next little bootie was accidentally knit in the round before I realized they should be knit flat and is waiting for me to figure out how to adjust the pattern or to frog it in desperation. And the final little bootie exists right now only in my imagination (where, by the way, it’s adorable).

Once the Olympics are over, I promise not to give you knitting updates multiple times a week. I promise to devise other topics of conversation. Ummm… Spring training? Books? Next Tuesday’s jury duty? Next Friday’s KT Tunstall concert? All will be fair game next week. I promise.

But in the meantime, we now return you to the Burrow, the site of our current Knitting Olympics event…

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February 21, 2006

upon returning home
posted by soe 2:25 pm

It’s so strange to return home late at night after working through a long weekend. Other people are well-rested and relaxed, and you’re still trying to sort out what town you’re in, whether you’re still speaking your native tongue, and where you might have put your license after you went through the security screening at an airport five states away.

Those of us who came home on flights last night slowly wandered into the office this morning. It is not a day for difficult tasks or complex thoughts. Today is a day for getting caught up on email, for cleaning the desk, for going over details of the weekend past.

It will not be a late night. I will go home at the appointed time. Things do not need to get done quickly today, although it would be good if a thing or two were to get crossed off the list.

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February 20, 2006

redeemed trip
posted by soe 9:56 am

Three of us decided to turn down a party invitation to stay in last night and work on our knitting projects. Suzanne and I are both behind our desired schedule for our Knitting Olympics projects, and Chickona is working on her first sweater.

Much to our surprise, at 8:30, our friends called. Please come to the party, they said. There’s food — and you’ll love the location. You’ll be disappointed if you miss the City Museum, they claimed.

We grumbled. We groaned. But eventually we gave in and agreed to come join them.

And thank goodness we did.

The St. Louis City Museum is awesome. It’s like a children’s museum, but aimed at everyone. So there are quirky things like an architectural hallway with pieces of St. Louis buildings (including a surprising number of doorknobs). And there’s an arts and crafts corner. But there are also slides all over the place. And areas where you can climb through and up and across the building. There’s an aquarium with petting tanks. (Turtles are surprisingly cold to the touch, even when one remembers they are cold-blooded.) There’s a section of caves. There’s a whole outside component (which we did not take advantage of in the balmy teens).

So after a trip where the biggest (nay, only) crowd we saw was when the SuperCross was letting out and where abandoned buildings outnumbered those in-use, it was a huge relief to discover that there was life in St. Louis after all and that people were putting old buildings (in this case, an old shoe factory) to new and creative uses.

St. Louis had been disappointing; the City Museum salvaged my impression of it. And in the process, it vaulted to the head of the line in terms of my best museum experiences.

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February 19, 2006

knitting olympics, stage 2
posted by soe 5:49 pm

I managed to knit 24 rows of my first bootie last week before discovering that I shouldn’t be knitting in the round according to the directions.

I put that yarn aside in order to try to work the pattern flat, but only picked it up again last night after getting back from a late night. And, I’m sad to say, that my poor, tired brain couldn’t wrap itself around knit 2, purl 2 on straight needles. I know the knowledge is there. But either the yarn or my brain refuses to cooperate, so we’ll see how this goes…

Maybe I’ll take my President’s Day holiday on Friday in order to stay home and knit all day. Is that cheating? Is that a waste of my carefully accrued vacation time? Am I still upright? Where am I?

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