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Thursday, May 13, 2010

"It should just work!" and "Where did you say my truck was?"

I'm being petulant.
It should just work.

If I buy a Consumer-Reports super-blessed Security Suite to protect me from the unpleasant aspects of power-tripping jerks on the Internet - it should just work.
If I use the Internet browser at home that is so favored by our company's nifty IT security guys that they expect us to ONLY use that browser at work - it should just work fine at home.

I don't want to have to wait for my PC to get it's first Security Suite update of the day before I can do anything on the computer.
I don't want to have to take breaks or slay the Security Suite because it gets stuck doing an update and sucks up all the CPU. (Yes, the prescribed solution from the Security Suite help-it's-not-working site is "do a hard boot". Nice.).
I don't want to have to un-install and re-install the expensive Security Suite because it has a little bug in the last update so it stopped getting updates and wouldn't let me open the frigging program to run a scan on my PC.
I don't want to have to go through the Security Suite's learning process a 2nd time because I had to reinstall it - and now it doesn't remember on which sites I allow pop ups or that funny program I'm trying to open the Borders coupon link from is my E-MAIL.

I don't want to have to shift to the less blessed and supposedly less secure Internet browser because the latest version of the favored Internet browser did some clever updates so it doesn't play well with Blogger anymore. {grrrr/oy}
I don't want to revamp my blog format because... the nice people who let me blog for free...with all sorts of nifty options..and reporting, and.... yeah, I probably shouldn't be whining about this one.

Minor announcement! I'm revamping my blog format inspired by the latest blog system improvements.
We could use a change! There's a buncha new formats available and so long as I don't used that work-favored Internet browser I can even make some changes to my blog! Wish me luck!


Ain't technology fun?


Last night, I was merrily finishing a book and getting started on the 2nd half of my 4th pair of socks, when...

(And yet the 5th pair of socks (made for a friend) was finished a couple of months ago...go figure.)

Anyway - I had started on the 2nd sock when the doorbell rang and a gentlemen I'd never seen before asked if I had two white trucks. I cautiously answered yes, wondering if someone wanted to try and buy one again.
(No - not the newer one that's about 5 years old - people ask to buy the 20 year old Isuzu. Again - go figure.)
He asked if that was one of my trucks - pointing down the driveway. I looked 'round the entry way...
And there was my very well-loved little Isuzu sitting sedately in the street, hogging most of the two lanes, with the M&M sun shade keeping out the starlight.

And my intelligent reply to this spectacle?    "Well, that sucks."

I thanked the gentleman for bringing this to my attention mumbling "The emergency break must have let loose." and turned back into the house to get my keys. I heard a slightly disgusted "It's her truck." from behind me and the several cars that had stopped to ponder my sliding parking job began to dissipate.

I grabbed my keys and padded barefoot out to my little truck sitting in the street.
The emergency brake was on. I think it was in 1st gear too. Uh-huh. Lovely.
I re-parked it back up on our sloping driveway, set the Emergency break really hard, turned off the truck and sat in it for a while trying to rock it out of place - it didn't budge.
Inspired by the parking shenanigans, I got up to check a few times through the night to make sure the truck was still in the driveway.

I told the DH about the unsupervised trip the truck took last night and he mentioned something about how maybe the last time he changed out the breaks that he might not have re-tightened the emergency break.

(It should Just Work!)


Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Grand Sweater Resurrection Scheme

I have this great knitted sweater/jacket. LOVE it!
It's from LL Bean, circa 1985 or so. It's made of Shetland Wool.
It was a gift from a very special man who no longer walks this earth - but who had excellent fashion sense.
My first (less than enthusiastic) reaction when I opened it was:
"It's grey.".
I quickly figured out this jacket is comfortable, warm, and goes with pretty much everything.
With learning to knit in the past few years, I developed a grand scheme that I would someday be a good enough knitter to recreate it before it fuzzed apart.
I glibly mentioned this plan to a lovely woman at Kiwi Knitting who had generously complimented me on my sweater.
She then asked if I'd looked at my left elbow lately...
There was a hole.
Like a 2 x 2 inches hole!
And I was clueless - you'd think I'd have noticed the draft at my elbow..

The stellar Tracy at Purls of Tucson, in her role as "Knit Doctor" - identified that the sweater had been created in the Brioche Stitch, found a near-perfect grey wool to match, and patched my elbow quite nicely. She was NOT entirely thrilled with her patch (I was) and refused to charge me for her time but accepted a Starbucks Gift Card as a show of my appreciation for the resuscitation of my favorite sweater. (It seems Knit Doctors are largely fueled by coffee...).
With the obvious repair addressed, I began to realize my favorite sweater was showing it's age. (Not unlike myself, come to think of it...).
It's a teeny bit felted. And there are a few stitches on the cuff and elsewhere that no longer connect to each other. 
And there's these little piles of fluff I find collecting around my desk at work that bear a striking resemblance to the shade of grey in my favorite sweater...and they only seem to appear when the sweater has been to work with me a lot.

Being that the recreate-the-sweater-before-the-sweater-sheds-away scheme is becoming less of a some-day project and more of a kinda-soon project...
  • I took a class on the Brioche stitch with Janet Szabo. ("Oh - that's what that stitch is...")
  • I got a copy of "Knitting Brioche" by Nancy Marchant - quite a spiffy book. (I've already marked 6 wanna-do patterns in this book. Very tempting).
  • I figured out that my original sweater is not knitted in worsted weight...it might be 2 strands of fingering weight yarn.
  • I've e-mailed LL Bean to see if they might be able to hook me up with the pattern. (Hey - I had to ask. And a question like that will be cheap entertainment to the LL Bean help desk after all the too large/too small questions!)
Hmmm - I think I'm knit-stalling.
Ok - I'm a bit daunted (understatement) at all the counting I'll have to do to recreate the pattern. Woof.

So... the button.
Part of the plot in recreating the sweater was that I would just shift the old, charming, wooden button from the original sweater to the recreated sweater when the time came.
Not gonna happen.

Why? It would appear Gryphon (aka the "Gryphon-ator") applied his puppy-like chewing to the wooden button on my favorite grey sweater/jacket.

It's a good thing he's so frigging cute.


("baby" picture from July 2009)