FO: a pair of unfancy socks.

I’ve finished a pair of socks, and it happens to be socktober. (How did I manage that?) I might like these so much that I’m going to cast on another equally unfancy sock or two. These are 64 st socks with 2×2 rib at the cuff, knit from the cuff down. I loosely followed the Knitmore Girls Vanilla Sock pattern after abandoning the Gentleman’s Fancy Sock I began with.)

Honestly, I wish I hadn’t finished knitting sock #2 quite so soon. See, I’ve spent my morning dealing with an unpleasant stomach bug, and all I’ve been able to do thus far today is sit quietly and knit. (No coffee, even!) I just ate some oatmeal, and so far, it seems to be staying right where I want it. (TMI?) I’m hoping to swap knitting for writing this afternoon — but I guess if working is impossible, knitting is the next best thing. And now I’ve got a new pair of socks!

Also, a new pair of glasses. What do you think? (Can this rooster pull off this look?)

Boh doesn’t seem to mind the new frames — so long as he can stay curled up on the couch. I’m happy to let him handle that part of today’s to-do list!

 

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sock satisfaction.

Remember this sock? The decidedly unfancy sock (so named because it was once the beginning of a gentleman’s fancy sock, and then I needed something mindless to knit on during a lecture, so it became stockinette, or unfancy) that I think I said I was going to finish before my exams? Well, last night, I was rooting around in my knitting bags looking for something simple to work on, and I found this, a row or two away from kitchenering. Yes, that’s right: kitchenering.

So I did.

And it felt great. About as great as actually writing 500 or so words yesterday. So I cast on the second sock. In looking for something to knit on yesterday, I realized that I have a lot of sock yarn. And that I like big (read: larger than one skein) shawls. Which means lots of stripes in my future, but also that I should try to re-find my sock mojo. So I’m on that.

mirror, mirror.

Idlewood. Again. Clearly I need to make another — after my exams. I snapped this picture before heading to one of my reading groups, where we discussed an excellent graphic novel (Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home) and talked about memoir, history, and voice — and about what makes something not feel self-indulgent. Which got me to thinking about blogging, especially because lately I’ve been snapping pictures of whatever I’m wearing (knits or otherwise) and posting them here. (Which seems incredibly narcissistic.)

On some level, blogging is self-indulgent. Really, all writing is. And I’m okay with that. The question we were wrestling with on Thursday night had more to do with the reader’s experience than the decision to write (or blog), and we kept returning to things like empathy, linking the ordinary and the particular to bigger (in this case, literary) themes, leaving space for interpretation rather than limiting how the reader understands and situates a particular moment, encounter, memory.

I want to think more about blogging as a form and as a personal process. How do conversations about blogging connect with discussions about memoir? In these genres, how do form and content interact? Can we identify conventions particular to blogging? In my own work, I’m thinking a lot about how I use the first person — what am I signally by choosing the personal pronoun? Am I actually revealing something personal, or is it a technique to make the reader identify with the “I”? (I’ve taken to calling this the “pretend personal” voice.) How much do I protect or reveal — here? In my academic writing? Once I’m on the other side of these exams, I’d like to spend some time (and space, maybe here?) thinking through, or maybe more accurately, writing with these questions.

Time for another picture of what I’m wearing? Clearly.

No knits in this shot, just a scarf that hasn’t been in rotation for awhile. Still faking it ’til I make it, and most days, I think it’s working. I managed to grade 10 papers yesterday, all dressed up. (She says, still in her pajamas.)

I knit less than five rows on this sock, and soon I’ll be ready to start decreasing for the toe. Ideally, I’ll finish the first sock this week, cast on the second and get through the ribbing before my first exam. That way I’ll have easy knitting handy to help with hard thinking.

Finished the carrot soup leftovers yesterday. There is another pot of this in my (near) future.

accidental socktober.

So, remember how I started a pair of Gentleman’s Fancy Socks? In January? Well, they are no longer fancy. I was running out the door yesterday to head to an afternoon lecture, and realized that I didn’t have any lecture-appropriate knitting. (Read: simple, involving wooden needles, and able to keep me busy for two hours.) See, I’m decreasing for the crown of the windschief hat, which means that at any moment I’ll need to switch to DPNs — and the circ is metal. And it will take less than two hours. And I am on one of the counting rows of the Citron, and the lace yarn is so thin that I really have to squint at it. And I’m still increasing on Idlewood, and my Kerrera is languishing, waiting for me to pick up the sleeve stitches…

So there I was, surrounded by WIPs with nothing to knit. And then I remembered these socks. And decided that I would work on the ribbing, and if I got past that, they would just become simple, autumnal, stockinette socks. And despite the pooling (not sure if you can see that super clearly in the photo, but it’s there), I love them. I even want to go to more lectures so I can keep knitting on them.

And now I need some guidance:

I got pretty soaked walking home (even with my umbrella) on Thursday in some blustery, rainy weather. And I accidentally ripped the bind off of these socks (which is bit tight) in getting out of my wet clothes. What is the best way to repair this? I’m sure I can just secure these stitches with some sock yarn, but is there something else I should be considering?

old sock, new sock.

Old sock — an On-Hold sock-in-progress from Socks from the Toe Up, initially begun for the KAL. (Looks sort of okay here, but the foot is baggy. I could really see the size difference when I compared this sock-in-progress to the superbly-fitting emerald city gusset heel socks I just finished.)

New sock. I love this yarn, which is Shibui sock in Ginger, and I’ve been feeling inspired by the (multiple pairs of) socks Lisa recently posted over at Knithound Brooklyn. This ribbed cuff is going to grow into a Gentleman’s Fancy Sock, from Knitting Vintage Socks by Nancy Bush, with a few changes. Because these are definitely for me, and I want them to fit, I went down a needle size to 2.5 mm needles, and cast on 64 st instead of 80 to adjust the pattern both for my yarn and for my foot. Because I have less yarn that is called for, my pair will have to be a standard length, so I’m foregoing the (lovely) leg shaping included in the pattern.

No hurry on this pair — there are lots of other projects in my WIP pile that I’d like to finish up. It simply seemed ridiculous to not cast on for another pair of socks after frogging the old ones, and these will likely live in my bag and do their part to keep me company throughout the coming semester, which starts Monday.

Speaking of which, somebody (ahem) around here needs to be better about getting out of bed in the morning.

While this guy normally stretches, sighs, and stumbles out of bed mere moments after I wake up, today he wanted nothing more than to lay his head back down on the pillow and doze while I made the coffee, fetched breakfast, and the like. Life is so hard for Boh.

Finally, it seems it wouldn’t be a complete blog post over here at chez Rooster without a picture of a delicious dinner prepared from Heidi Swanson’s Super Natural Cooking.

This is her Roasted Tomato and Paprika Soup, made with homemade stock based on her veggie stock recipe. This is the second time I’ve made this soup this month, and I’ll be making it again. (I’m also newly addicted to smoked paprika, and I blame this book.) Also, today over on 101 cookbooks, Heidi posted that she’s working on another cookbook! I’m glad to hear it, as this is one of my current favorites.

Off to bed — Boh is already there, of course.

FO: rusted root.

Excuse the mirror. I am super happy with the way this turned out. I wore it to work on Friday, out to lunch with a friend, and then to see Wilco last night. (Perhaps the best show I’ve ever seen. Period.)

Here’s one more shot of the neckline:

I also have a few goodies to share. These arrived in record time from The Loopy Ewe. My favorite bag was stolen a few weeks ago when my car window was smashed, so I decided to look for another cavernous bag to haul around with me. I settled on the Namaste Malibu, and I love it.

This bag is deceptively large — I can easily imagine a sweater’s worth of yarn tucked into one side — and the center zip pocket is the perfect size for a sock or a dishcloth in progress. Since I was already placing an order, I picked up some gorgeous Shibui sock yarn in honey. (It matches the bag.)

WordPress was a bit cranky last night, so it has taken me roughly 10 hours to actually hit publish. Planning to do some frolicking with the dog this morning before heading up to Santa Fe for more high school rugby and touristy fun stuff. Maybe I’ll remember to take some pictures…