Not exactly an issues-oriented piece, but cute nevertheless. Thanks to soxanne for the link.
Intelligence is your strongest virtue
Intelligence (also called intellect) is an umbrella term used to describe a property of the mind that encompasses many related abilities, such as the capacities to reason, plan, and solve problems. And you? Your brain shines. All 7 virtues are a part of you, but your intelligence runs deepest.
It is likely you're a smarty-pants. And it's likely (but not necessary) that your discipline score is high also. It takes a certain resolve to maintain all those neural thingies.
Intelligent famous people: Einstein, Shakespeare, Da Vinci.
Your raw relative scores follow. 0% is low, and 100% is perfect, nearly impossible. Note that I pitted the virtues against each other, so in some way these are relative scores. It's impossible to score high on all of them, and a low score on one is just relatively low compared to the other virtues.
No huge surprises there, although I was rather alarmed to see that my courage is the lowest of my attributes and that my humility outranked my compassion. Huh. Coulda fooled me on that last one.
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I finished off the Noro scarf that I started a few
weeks months ago. Here are a couple photos when it was just a baby.
I shall attempt to get a better photo of it in its entirety. Instead of the usual Silk Garden, this yarn is Noro Aurora #7 (blues) and #9 (reds), which will coordinate nicely with my brick red winter coat. Its special appeal was that it has a shiny thread running through it. Ooooh, a sparkly!
Once I had finished that scarf, I decided it was time to return to the kimono cardigan I started almost a year ago. The last few days have added about 6" at the top of the back, which is nearly finished now.
Soon -- well, sometime -- I will have a warm sweater.
In the meantime, my mindless on-the-go knitting is the lacy scarf of handspun cotton to go with my jean jacket.
That's the initial swatch, which was frogged. The scarf is now about 36" long with none of the irregularities seen in the swatch. But there are no photos to document this; you will just have to trust me.
The A4A sweater is sleeping.
Since I missed the October deadline I figured I would instead work on my own sweater and save this one for later.
And that's it for the knitting. Except that I have a pile of bibs knitted, all of which need their ends woven in and a button found and sewn on. All in good time.
We (the finance committee of the county board of supervisors) did eventually balance the county budget, although not without a fair amount of pain. And it won't be over until the November 12 meeting where the entire board votes on the budget, i.e, when 18 other supervisors get their chance to twiddle and tweak. I won't go into everything we had to cut because county business is not the focus of this blog. This blog is all about the knitting. And the people.
Welcome to our last budget meeting!
Here is Gary, who chairs the committee:
That is the look of a man who is tired. Very, very tired.
Here is Tonya, the county's finance director:
I suspect that her expression is the result of some incredibly stupid comment that one of us made. She has a formidable task: educating us about government accounting, ensuring we don't stray from the published agenda and possibly violate the open meetings law, AND making sure we don't attempt to do something really stupid with the budget, like throwing in a line item for expensively catered meals at all budget committee meetings. Stuff like that.
Mick is the senior member of the committee:
Mick apparently does not care to pose for photos. He also has rather less patience than others with a certain member of the finance committee who thinks everything should be photographed and blogged about.
Brian, on the other hand, is always ready for fun:
The other Brian on the committee was absent from this meeting.
Deb works in Tonya's department and has the unenviable job of taking the minutes of our meetings. She tackles this with a great deal of animation. Here is a typical Deb pose:
Last but not least, yours truly:
Here we are in action:
That is another board member in the peanut gallery. He -- and the chief deputy sheriff, who took this last photo -- stayed through the whole meeting. Maybe to be sure we didn't screw up royally. Hard to say, really. Once again, Tonya is trying to explain something to us. Imagine a thought bubble above her head: "Okay, one more time, in words of one syllable..."
There you have it. County government at its finest.
There was was in the mailbox a couple days ago.
What might be in there?
Well, yeah, it's yarn, we all knew that, but what kind of yarn?
To be precise, nine (9!) gorgeous skeins of alpaca, which I won in Dr. Mel's raffle to raise money for an animal shelter in Maine.
These colors are fairly true, although the red is a bit deeper and the one on the right is really a brown-gray, not just gray. Yummy stuff, and the colors are absolutely perfect together. I may see a warm vest in my future.
That is the leading edge of a bike helmet that has encountered the pavement. What does the head that was contained in it look like after that encounter?
At first it looked like this (warning: do not click if you are the least bit squeamish).
After self-administered first aid, the head -- which belongs to #2 son -- looked like this:
(He emailed me those last two photos the night this happened. The others I took today when he came to the lake for the weekend.)
Those are just scrapes, though. Check this out:
He must wear the wrist brace until Tuesday or so, when he will get a cast. Yep, he broke his wrist -- specifically, he has a radial fracture.
The story is this: he was biking to his car after work and was a block or so south of Franklin on Lyndale, for those of you familiar with Minneapolis. He had just checked his helmet-mounted rearview mirror for traffic behind him and while his eyes were averted from the road immediately ahead, his right handlebar clipped a parked car. Bam! and down he went, skidding across the pavement. He said his first thought upon raising his head from the ground was, Damn, my bike in in the street! Did it get run over? Then he stood up, leaned over the bike, and wondered why there was blood dripping onto the street.
I am so grateful that there was no moving automobile involved in this incident. It could have been so much more serious. He could easily be dead had there been a car coming at the wrong moment. The other thing we are all grateful for is that he has health insurance (which only went into effect in June or July) through his job that covers these medical bills.
THU., OCT 23, 2008 - 1:33 PM
Judge tosses lawsuit challenging voter registration checks
A Dane County circuit judge today dismissed a lawsuit by Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen to require the state elections agency to check voter registrations against other state databases dating to 2006, which critics said could have thrown hundreds of thousands of registrations into doubt.
Full story here.
Guess which subset of the population of voter registrations would be more likely to be put into doubt? Those who move more often -- the young, those who rent, i.e., those more likely to vote Democrat.
I am bored. I haven't been bored in so long that I almost didn't recognize the feeling. What I am bored with is the limited number of activities available to me in a wheel chair or on crutches/a walker: read, knit, surf the net, take a nap. I have managed to do a few loads of laundry, and I have gone to some meetings. But overall, my time is pretty much spent reading/knitting/surfing. Given that I am a relatively quiet, sedentary person, I find it remarkable that I have reached the boredom plateau. The idea of nothing to do but read, knit, and surf the net has long been my idea of heaven. (All together now: Be careful what you wish for.)
It really hit me Saturday, when I realized that I had a actual, literal visceral desire to get up and walk around. Of course, I could not indulge that desire, so instead I slept until 12:30 pm, took a 2-hour nap in the afternoon, and went to bed at 10:30. Perhaps boredom is not the right term. Maybe what I am is depressed. How does one get the endorphins to flow -- without drugs, that is -- if one cannot move?
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In spite of my boredom, I have done some enjoyable things. I made myself another toe sock:
That is one strand of Online Highland Color #841 held together with one strand of Lane Cervina Calzetteria fingering in a very dark gray solid, knitted in 2x2 rib on a US#1 needle and using Cathy-Cate's decrease method. Yes, that makes a very, very dense fabric -- I live in Wisconsin and it's getting cold.
There is a second toe sock OTN:
That one is a strand of the same dark gray yarn held together with a strand of Schoeller + Stahl Fortissima Colori Socka Color #4006 (the link will take you to a photo of what the yarn looks like knitted up by itself as intended), once again knitted on a US#1 and yielding a very, very dense fabric. Hey, our floors are cold!
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I have been remiss in not telling the world about the goodies I have won/acquired in the past few months.
First, this emergency knitting kit bag from 1870 Pearl, which I won for leaving the 400th(?) comment on her blog.
Thanks, Abigail! I put that puppy to good use during the Wisconsin Counties Association conference I went to last week. Let's see what I was working on, hmmmm?
Yes, another Noro striped scarf. This is my fourth, I think, and it is just barely possible that this one might actually be for me.
This next one was not a contest prize; it was a gift from a very sweet and generous knitter. It is a stitch saver, to be used in those knitting-out-and-about moments when you drop a stitch and do not have your usual crochet hook handy:
Thanks, Ruth! She enclosed this when she sent me her copy of Greeley's Cove, a scary thriller that she had blogged about. Please notice that this stitch saver is personalized Just.For.Me. Ruth sells these in her Etsy shop. Go. Buy one. Or six. I love mine.
Did you wonder what that objet d'knit was in the emergency knitting kit photos, the thing that the kit is resting on? Let me tell you right now, it is gonna blow your [hand-knit] socks right off. You are all gonna be soooooooo jealous of The Kat™.
Does anyone recognize this?
How about if I show you a larger photo:
That, my friends, is the grand prize from Claudia's MS Ride fundraiser back in June, knit by Angela. If I were to wait until I knitted a lace shawl for myself I would have been waiting -- and shivering -- for a long, long, long time. I have been wearing this beauty proudly and happily and gratefully ever since the weather turned chilly a few weeks ago. Thank you, Angela, and thank you, Claudia! The shawl is lovely and soft and warm (and has not been used as a cat bed; it is way too wonderful for that, much to my kitties' dismay).
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Well, guess what? I am not bored now. The key is just to Do Something. Doing Something motivates me to Do Something Else, and so on, and so on.
More blog posts need to be written. More knitting needs to be done. There is laundry I can tackle. I need to get myself over to the county clerk's office to do some research on previous board resolutions.
Time to go. Thanks for reading!
Back on September 16 (Hey! That's the day I broke my ankle! Little did I know what lay in store for me when I wrote that post.) I gave a link to the May 9 episode of This American Life. This one-hour broadcast gave the clearest explanation anywhere of how the sub-prime mortgage crisis came about. If you have not heard it, I suggest that you grab your knitting, sit back, and listen to it. (Click on "Full Episode," above halfway down the page in the left column.)
Today someone sent me a link to a follow-up episode produced by the same two journalists that did the first one. In this show they explain what has been happening since Lehman Brothers went bankrupt in September and all hell broke loose in the financial markets. Once again, I suggest that you grab your knitting, sit back, and listen. It is relatively easy to understand -- these guys are great at with simple explanations of complex things -- and highly informative.
And scary. Very scary.
Recovery from the ankle break continues apace. On Thursday (yesterday) I had a follow-up appointment with the ortho doc. He took off the soft cast, inspected the surgical incision, and pronounced it good. Yay! Smokey happened to be sitting in a position where he got a good look at it and he concurred; back in his days as a public health nurse he got to see a lot of incisions and wounds and to change their dressings and administer various kinds of therapy, so his opinion counts.
I have a new cast now, a *real* cast, the kind with fiberglass, and, most importantly, the kind that people can sign. Our first stop (after the bathroom) after the clinic appointment yesterday was at Office Max to buy a pack of multi-colored Sharpies for that very purpose.
Did you know that casts now come in a variety of colors? I didn't know that, either. We spotted, on the cast cart, red, fluorescent pink, yellow, lime green, kelly green, blue, and perhaps a few others. What did I choose? Boring off-white, but only because (wait for it)
it glows in the dark! My inner 8-yo is apparently alive and well :-) Sorry, no photo, it's still daylight here.
Anyone who has been reading this blog for 2 years (you poor things!) may remember that I happen to have some glow-in-the-dark yarn. I do believe that that yarn, in combination with some superwash something-or-other from the stash, will make a dandy, Halloween-appropriate toe cozy.
In the meantime, though, my toes have been saved from the chilly temps by the generous and sweeter-than-springtime Cathy-Cate.
(please note the painted-on Betadine tan)
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So, what's all this about The Dells, Kat™?
For those of you who are not familiar with the Upper Midwest, Wisconsin Dells is the convention and conference center of Wisconsin. Tourism has been a mainstay there for 150 years, according to their website, primarily because of the scenic beauty of that part of the Wisconsin River. Here's the Wikipedia photo of the Dells of the Wisconsin River:
In the last 25(?) or so years, though, it has become known more for man-made attractions, in particular, indoor waterparks. It's a bit like Las Vegas without the gambling or shows, Las Vegas as designed by small-town Midwesterners.
The city proper has a truly amazing assortment of cheesy attractions. There is a life-size replica of the White House sitting haphardardly upside-down, supposedly after some catastrophe; for a admission fee you can go inside. There is a 50-foot tall replica of the Trojan Horse; I suppose you can go up into it after paying the admission fee, although I have a hard time seeing the attraction. I also seem to remember a huge rocket ship that promised some kind of thrill and other attractions promising a various and sundry assortment of doubtful excitements.
Because of the indoor waterparks attached to hotels, The Dells has become a family weekend getaway place for many Midwesterners. It also hosts lots of conferences, with the attraction of You can bring the family! There's fun for everyone! And thus, the Wisconsin Counties Association is holding their annual conference there this year, and I and 10 other members of the county board, along with assorted family members, are going.
Here's what, among other things, we will be doing:
I'm riding down in the county Impala with two other board members -- plenty of room for my wheelchair -- and my roommate, the only other female board member attending from Polk County, offered to wheel me anywhere I needed to go. So I am going.
You may or may not remember this vital mathematical equation:
4 hour car ride + 2.5 days of lectures/speakers/seminars = LOTS OF KNITTING TIME!
I wanted to knit something for Matthew's girlfriend Maggie's birthday last month. She likes pink. A lot. I had a skein of pink Tilli Tomas Disco Lights in my stash. Presto! Birthday present!
The yarn was lovely to work with, as long as I didn't need to frog. The fine thread onto which the sequins were threaded did not always want to work well with the the silk base yarn. But it felt yummy in my hands while knitting, and happily I did not ever have to frog, only to tink back a few stitches occasionally.
Here it is after knitting but before blocking:
(The spooky framing effect is due to the automatic shutter cover on my camera not being happy with me after I dropped it. On concrete. Wah.)
I pinned and pinned and pinned. It fit onto my ironing board -- the blocking place of choice for a scarf in my house -- but only just barely:
The pattern is another of the faggoting variations in Barbara Walker #1:* K2, yo, k2tog,* repeat between *; end k2, except that I changed all the knits to purls because it was somehow easier to do it that way. Easy peasy.
I mailed it off to her a mere week after her b'day, but she was nice enough not to give me hard time about the tardiness. After all, her birthday was the day I broke my ankle. Happy birthday, Maggie!
Awesome. Totally awesome.
Cursingmama thanked me today for a little album cover meme, which is, like, fun and kinda creative, but really nothing more than a little time-killing fun.
This YouTube video, though, which I found at her blog, is awesome. Totally awesome, yo. Thank, C'mama!
From the immortal Dr.Mel...
The first article title on the page is the name of your band.
The last four words of the very last quote is the title of your album.
third picture (direction not specified, so this could theoretically be
horizontally, vertically or diagonally), no matter what it is, will be
your album cover.
Caveat: You should be very careful with this last one, as most people retain all or some rights for their photos. I only used photos with Creative Commons requiring attribution and permitting derivations of the original, which did require reloading the page several times but keeps me safe from lawsuits. (Clearly, Dr. Mel has more patience than I. After doing the random image thing for a loooong time and finding exactly one image with a Creative Commons license, I gave up on that method. I searched for "creative commons" in Flickr and chose from the images whose ordinal number, if I were to assign such numbers, would have been divisible by 3. Much faster.)
Use your graphics program of choice to throw them together, and post the result in you blog because it’s more amusing that way.
So. Ya wanna see what I came up with? I had to use Paint b/c I am using Smokey's laptop in bed; imagine these 1000% better if I were at my desk, using my Mac.
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or maybe this one?
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The last one I did, and my favorite:
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Dr. Mel is often in my thoughts these days. He drew my name in his raffle and has promised me something yummy from his stash. Although Lucy is hoping that "something yummy from the stash" implies four legs and fur, I am hoping for some yarn. We really, really do not need another dog.