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February 20, 2009

The Chronic(what?)cles of Yarnia

So how many times have you walked into a yarn shop and been all, "Dude... if this orange alpaca had a shot of silvery thread through it it would be the BOMB"? All the time, right? Well today I discovered a veritable haven for fiber-philes that solves this very problem: Yarnia.

The walls of this smallish shop are lined with cone upon cone of single strands of cotton, alpaca, wool, acrylic, silk and blend yarns in every color you can imagine. The idea is that you combine multiple strands to achieve your desired color and thickness. The proprietor takes your chosen cones and hooks them individually into her windy machine, like so:



The machine combines all your threads together and winds them onto a new cone to create your custom yarn. To be 100 percent honest, the yarn I made is probably the best that shop has seen. The owner even told me I was "good at color." I always knew I should have gotten my degree in Color Studies...

I promise to post more pictures of the yarn and the finished product after it's presented to its intended owner (who will no doubt faint with delight).

By the way, the only other known shop of this kind is in Montreal. I'm not going to say it's another reason to come to Portland to visit me, but you know it is.

February 16, 2009

Is this ironic yet?

The outrageous popularity of the "25 Things" note on Facebook has made participating so very tempting for this lemming, but I've heretofore resisted. Now that it's dying off (and being replaced with much more obnoxious chain questionnaires for couples and new mommies), can I get away with posting mine on this blog without seeming like a total dweeb? I guess I leave the answer up to you, dear readers.

1. As a child I liked to sit in the crab apple tree in my backyard with a bucket of crab apples and a book, thinking I was teaching myself to survive in the wilderness.
2. I also used to practice going up and down our creaky stairs without making a sound-- a skill I was convinced would save me if kidnappers ever entered the house.
3. When I went to China as a 10-year-old for a world conference on women, I repeatedly referred to presenter Betty Friedan as Betty Crocker. After reading The Feminine Mystique I now realize just how hilarious that was.
4. In fifth grade, after watching Clueless for the first time during spring break, I thought I would be able to negotiate my C+ in Life Science to a B when I returned to school.
5. In sixth grade, when glitter make-up was popular, I used one of the roll-on applicators (meant for lips and eyelids) to coat my entire face. My teacher, who had me go up to the projector to work a math problem, told me I was blinding her.
6. The same teacher gave me one of the sole disciplinary marks I ever received for using a bobby pin to pinch my nose shut.
7. In high school I often walked around with what I thought was a sorrowful look on my face so people would think I was experiencing depths of emotion they could never plumb. I later found out this scowl made people who didn't know me think I was a bitch.
8. I tried out for cheerleading as a freshman. It started off as a joke but then I really wanted to join. I still remember the routine they taught us. "East fans/In the stands/We wanna hear you yell!" Unfortunately, this white girl can't jump.
9. My brother and I had newspaper class together when I was a junior, and we liked to aggravate our adviser by playing with her creepy rabbit fur-covered kitten things. Once we hanged one from the projector screen pull. Another time we left it in a precarious dance with the paper cutter. Yet another time we kidnapped one and made a ransom note asking for cookies. I believe he still has one of them in his room at home.
10. The same brother and I spent most of our lives not getting along until midway through high school. Then we started singing songs like, "He is my brother and my brother is my friend/ she is my sister and my sister is my friend/ friend friend friend friend friend friend friend."
11. When I lived in the dorms I felt guilty every time I took the elevator from the dining hall in the basement to my room on the third floor. One time I got in and thought I would be able to take my clandestine ride up in solitude, but a guy squeezed in and pressed the "6." Feeling like a lazy jerk, when I departed the elevator I dragged my left leg behind me so he would think I was injured and unable to use the stairs.
12. I was so convinced that the landlords in my Minneapolis apartment were creepy enough to broadcast images from hidden cameras to a lewd website for monetary gain that one night I enlisted my roommates' help in removing all our vents so we could peer inside. The fact that we found nothing doesn't change my conviction.
13. I found out I had mono a week after smooching a guy I was sweet on. Trying to be a responsible citizen, I called to tell him and added that I knew he didn't have health insurance and would help him pay for the doctor bills if he did in fact have the disease. Some time later, he called me back and left the longest, most awkward, most epic message ever to explain that he wasn't sick. I rue the day I accidentally deleted it from my phone.
14. The best work days of my life were when a coworker brought a tent to the office and we edited from within it.
15. One of my boyf's favorite things to do is to startle me, which is a pretty easy feat and is usually rewarded with a scream. This summer I tried to scare him back by climbing in through the open bedroom window. All I got out of it was a pulled muscle.
16. It is impossible for me to exit my boss' office without bodyslamming into the door frame.
17. My mom has cheated at Scrabble since before we were old enough to know any better. I beat her for the first time this winter and don't feel the need to ever play her again. It was my greatest triumph.
18. I'm obsessed with checking the Google Analytics for this blog. The search terms people use to end up on the site are so random. This month, for example, people have landed on TP by searching "Teenuh M. Foster," "at least I know I'm alive," "campus + 'relieving herself'" and "stuttering dude can't escape from his girlfriends moms."
19. Since starting my current job, I think I've used more exclamation marks and smiley faces in emails than in all of my previous years of existence combined. Maybe this means I'm getting nicer.
20. I profess to like cooking, but I tend to swear up a storm and injure myself whilst in the process. I can't cut things uniformly and I rarely stray from the recipe. Maybe a better statement would be "I like eating."
21. I wake boyf up before I go to work every morning and won't leave until he tells me that I look pretty.
22. I used to tell people I decided to become a reporter because my middle name rhymes with "truth." That is a lie.
23. I get immense pleasure from mocking TV newscasters' voices.
24. I never want to live anywhere again that doesn't have a good mass transit system.
25. I'm sorely tempted to defriend dozens of people on Facebook, but the last time I defriended someone they confronted me and I had to pretend the site had malfunctioned. Someday I'll have the courage... the courage to only be friends with my friends. Sigh.

February 14, 2009

Love is so delicious

Would you behold that beauty? This is what the boyf gave me from Pix Patisserie (my favorite place in Portland, hands down) this afternoon. It is a heart-shaped puff pastry shell topped with something more delicious than whipped cream, fresh raspberries, rose-flavored macarons and a rose petal. It was filled with raspberry mousse with chunks of chocolate-covered pop rocks here and there. That's right-- one bite and my mouth literally exploded. Oh, and my camera failed to capture it, but this confection was also sprinkled with pink glitter.

Wuv. Twoo Wuv.