Day Seven: Time

SpringI would love to be able to claim that all my crafting time looks like this: sitting at a table sipping delicious tea out of a 1950s retro-futurist tea cup whilst a lovely tea pot matches my knitting. Sadly that was just today.

Like many other knitters and crocheters, I tend to make things whenever and wherever. I knit on public transport, when I'm waiting at the doctor's, during my lunch hour, and even very occasionally at work (I work within the knitting industry so many people assume that means I sit and knit all day. Ha!). Oh, and at knitting groups! I love my knitting buddies.

My favourite place to knit is my bed (which is also my favourite place to read). I prop myself up with pillows and blankets, get my iPod out and just relax into a current knitting project. I listen to audiobooks and podcasts rather than music. My brain is wired to it learning as much as possible so unless I am knitting something horrifically difficult, I do not listen to music.

Lately I have been listening to:

Today I finished my Catcher in the Rye shawlette (pictured next to that marvellous tea-cup above). Looking back, it was an underwhelming knitting experience but I think I burned out on making shawls during last year's 10 Shawls in 2010 knit-along. I have already cast on my next project: I now have six rows of 270+ stitches in Kidsilk Haze to rip back because I did not swatch (gulp!).

Wish me luck.

You can find more blogs participating in the Knitting & Crochet Blog Week by googling 2KCBWDAY7. If you have come here as part of the Knitting & Crochet Blog Week, thank you for visiting. I'll still be here once this week is over and I'm usually blogging about arts, books, films, language besides all the craft stuff. Do stick around.

Careful with Words

I'm not a huge gadget fan, but I love my green iPod, Darth Kermit. It's an old model, but it does the job every morning as I'm going to and fro work. However, I am yet to figure a way to make suitable playlists for Darth Kermit. I tend to make my playlists in the evenings when I'm a bit tired, a bit dozy and generally comfortable and content. This results in chilled-out playlists. Unfortunately I am in need of wake-me-up music in the mornings - preferably of the sparkly pop variety. I have tried to steer my playlist making in that general direction, but to no avail. Anyway, I have been listening to knitting podcasts instead. I listen to a lot of different ones - both current ones as well as a lot of old ones. I was listening to a relatively current one when I was jolted out of my morning sleepiness by the podcaster describing someone as being a bit "spazzy". Now, I realise that British English and American English are two very different things. I also realise that whilst I find expressions such as "that's spazzy" or "that's gay" very offensive, these types of expressions are accepted among certain young people who do not mean to be derogatory or offensive. The question is: do I contact the podcaster and point out that I find her language offensive .. or should I just let it slide and get less serious about words and meanings? I'm reminded of Josh Rouse's The White Trash Period of My Life in which he sings careful with words .. they are so meaningful. It is one of those songs I should never put on my iPod morning mix and yet I do.

My inbox delivered some delightful surprises this morning - lovely previews of the new Kim Hargreaves book, Misty, and the forthcoming Amy Butler yarn range - so even though I was stuck with melancholy songs and surprisingly derogatory knitting podcasts, I could enjoy my morning coffee and scone feeling a bit cheerful.

Welcome To My Head

I promised E. that I'd list the podcasts I like. I'm relatively new to podcasts (I'm slow on the uptake), so I'm yet to build up a list of definitive favourites. If someone has recommendations, I'd be happy to hear them! Left Field Cinema is an intelligent podcast looking at both arthouse cinema (like Kieslowski) and mainstream films like Alien. I like the podcast because it assumes the listener is intelligent and it covers a lot of films I enjoy.

The Knit Picks Podcast. KP is a low-budget yarn company focused on the North American market - and they've managed to produce a podcast which is both very informative and very intimate. Kelley Petkun will either irritate or amuse you - she reminds me of a good friend of mine and so I enjoy catching up with Petkun's wide-eyed middle-class commentary on travelling, dogs and golf. I kid you not.

Oxford University's Medieval Podcasts. I have really, really enjoyed their podcasts on Anglo-Saxon texts and culture. This may not be everyone's cup o'tea, but these podcasts have been right up my street. To be avoided if New Historicism gives you a headache.

Lingua Franca. An Australian podcast on language. So far my favourite episode focused on linguistic typology (i.e. classification of languages based upon structural rather than semantic or historical similarities) but the podcast covers a lot of ground: spelling, loanwords, coarse language usage etc.

I'm yet to find podcasts dealing with current literature, modernism, poetry, art history, entertainment or humanism. Anyone?

In related news - that is, "Karie starts using web tools that have been around for years" - I am now keeping up with blogs via a blog aggregator. Gosh, I'm so 2003 sometimes.

Finally, I have (re-)discovered The Phoenix Foundation in recent days. If you like your music indie, mellow, folky and kiwi ..