Wednesday, March 05, 2003

The question of the day: "How much caffeine does it take to make Velma amusing?" You'll have to answer that sticky question for yourself.

Onward, into the void! We had quite a mellow little gathering last eve, Fat Tuesday (heh heh, we luvs Mardi Gras), as 7 stalwart knitter babes and one knitter knave met at Plaza Grill for the usual Patter on a Platter. Our ranks were diminished by the continued influence of the Humboldt Crud, still being passed around and now felling both Tamara and Natalie, as well as maintaining it's grippe on Kathleen. We send you good chicken-soup vibes and our wishes for a speedy recovery, girlz. In addition, the Exam to Achieve Registered Geologist Licensing and General All-Around Rock Goddess Status is being administered in our State Capital (aka Sackatomatoes, CA) this upcoming Friday, and we lost Eileen and Chris to Study Hell. To them, we wish Bon Chance and a celebratory pitcher of Cosmos after!

But even sans regulars, we turned out and knit up a storm. Your author was pleasantly surprised by the presence of one Heather B. and her self-designed scarf. She, it was learned, just returned from the jungle wilds of the Yucatan, where she spent 2 fun-filled weeks with her beau traipsing up and down the steps of the ruins of Chichen Itza, Coba, Tulum and Ek Balam. How much fun is that! If asked, Heather can produce lovely pics of her excursion, comprised mainly of shots of the botanical wonders found there. (Oh, and on a side note, please contact Heather if you, or any intrepid soul you know, is interested in posing nude for one of her legendary photo sessions. She is embarking on her newest 'photo weaving' project, which, your author can attest, produces beautiful and surprising results. Velma loves her "Punkin' Butt" series ;)

In addition to Heather's participation, we had our very first Knutty Knitter! (This is in contrast to all us Pussy Purlers, I suppose). Give it up for Jay, who arrived toting his newly-acquired yarn and needles in a vintage Samsonite briefcase; very creative. Without our Knitting Instructor Extraordinaire, Eileen, Jay had to rely on the substitute teachings of Velma. Musta worked, though, as Jay is well on his way to being the proud owner of a lovely garter stitch, fuzzy scarf knit up in complementary brown wool and butter-yellow mohair. Although he seems to be wound pretty tight, judging by how hard he tugs on that yarn (wouldn't want it to go anywhere) when knitting, he's the speediest learner in the West.

Let me introduce you to our third new participant, Mary U., who is a compatriot and colleague of the Velmster. She, like the mystery Liz whom only Jay has met, works with Velma at Internews, but way out in Sunny Brae at the accounting office. Mary is a lapsed knitter, coming back to the fold with a vengeance, working on her first-ever pair of socks. Mary, I feel your pain! Those #2 needles are bitch, especially when you forget your glasses, eh? ;)

Who else graced our table with their presence? Hmmm, let's see. Well, Simone was back from her backpacking sojourn, and although she said she drug her knitting along with her on said trip, she only made it as far as casting on. Way to stay focused on the wonders of nature, Simone. Her seed-stitch scarf is now underway. Kat was there, and her she got her scarf to the stage where she is ready to re-learn how to bind-off (bind on, bind off, bind on, THE BINDER -- to be sung to the tune of 'The Clapper'). She shoulda watched Cheri, who also got to the bind-off stage last night. After Velma got done with Jay, she moved down to Cheri's end of the table, and now not only does Cheri know how to bind-off, but she's the proud owner of a beautiful 2x2 ribbed purple scarf knit in Merino Frappe. Congrats on your first completed project, Cheri! Trooper that she is, she says she's now ready to try her hand at a hat (more below on hats).

We also had one fiber arts-free participant last night, who instead of string-and-sticks brought her medical terminology homework with her, and studied up to become an x-ray tech. But she DID sport a fantastic, albeit machine-knit, hat reminiscent of Dr. Seuss, featuring several wool 'fingers' sprouting from it. Velma wants to attempt to replicate the pattern for the upcoming Hat Contest (again, see below). And who was this mystery guest? Why, our Honorary Hurler, MIKKEL.

And where was Anna? And Gwen? And Steph? And Ev? Shame on you, we missed you! They must have been home gettin' some; what else would keep them away? Hope to see 'em all next week.

So what's this about a Hat Contest, you ask? Well, I'll tell you. Ms. Diane, who many of you know from your shopping excursions to Fabric Temptations, our wonderful LYS (Local Yarn Store), suggested it. Her idea: each P&H'er can make a hat of their choosing, and Diane will create a window display around 'em at Fabric Temptations. Employees there will also participate, and we can all cast a vote on which hat we like the best. I'm even hoping I can convince 'Lenny, the esteemed Proprietress of F.T., to put up some scrumptious wool for the winner. Whatchya think? Eileen and Velma could do a Hat Clinic in advance, so everyone would be armed with the knowledge of how to knit in the round (necessary for making a hat). Your author is already designing a Reservoir Tip Redux-Hat for her contribution, in addition to copying Mikkel's chapeau. Weigh in on this subject and more at the next Purl & Hurl gathering.

Which leads, gentle reader, to the close of this missive. I'd like to end with a juicy link to the new Spring issue of Knitty, found at, and a reminder that we next meet Tuesday, March 11th at 6:30pm at Plaza Grill. Come one, come all! Until then, I wish you happy knitting and adieu.

Cheers, xoxo Velma

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