Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Shaun needs a good vet.

Help! My poor little truck isn't doing well. His starter crapped out on me. Took me ages to find a diesel one (the petrol ones won't work, so instead of $10 I spent $300). $350 of labor later, the "mechanic" (I use that term very loosely - we will not be going back to these guys) caused an electrical storm in the dash that has robbed me of my right taillight. And he still won't start. We had a similar problem when they worked on Preston, but they said they knew Rovers so we gave 'em another chance. What was I thinking? They couldn't even figure out how to start him. Instead of calling me, of course, they wired up a temporary glow plug starter. Idiots. Now it's looking like the starter was just fine to begin with. They didn't even diagnose him properly.


The Rover guys are all far away. I live in Paoli on The Mainline, home of new American cars. Shaun is sitting at the bottom of the hilly driveway, so a push start is a challenge. Please, does anybody know a real mechanic with common sense? Who's used to diesels and can shepherd electrons competently?

Sunday, February 24, 2008

OMG!!! Bunny Panties!!

I'm not generally the sort who flashes her underpants on the Internet - it's not that kind of blog - but who can resist Panties of Power like this?

The penquins were a $2.99 bonus. :)

Even Plastic Hellhounds Need Couture

The girls at Mason-Dixon are running a contest called "Teeny Project Runway." Basically we had to dress an inanimate object (not a bear). I was inspired to clothe Cerberus. He previously battled my Roman army in the buff, but check out his duds now!

PS - This is a publicly-judged contest, so please VOTE FOR ME!!

UPDATE: I didn't even come close to winning, but it you check out the stars you'll see why. Amazing stuff. Some people have far more creativity than responsibility in their lives, if you know what I mean!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Tyrannosaurus sex

A discussion on Ravelry about knitting anatomically correct animals led to a post offering these two fascinating articles on dino-sex. I must say, though, that the comments are just as amusing. People are so stupid! :)

Sheer Lunacy

These pics are so awful they're barely worth posting. But it was a magical night: Went out to see the lunar eclipse and found crunchy, fake-looking snow on the back porch. The sky was clear, the stars were brilliant. The moon looked like a blood orange. The snow, impossible to photograph properly, was a collection of tiny perfect cut-out hexagons. Amazing. They looked like shiny plastic props.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

A little taste

Fred's at it again. Personally, I think he's represented the size differential quite accurately.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Mercer Museum

Today we went to the Mercer Museum, a huge concrete castle filled with 40,000 tools and artifacts from American life early last century. Room after room after room, each with a theme. Some of my favorites: The collection of spinning wheels, swifts, looms, and other fiber acutrements. The medical stuff. The accessories exhibit, including those little overshoes for bad weather. See the space for the heels of her shoe? So cute. Girlie was entranced by the navigational equipment. Matt liked the cast iron fence posts. Somehow we wound up on the roof.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Our next hobby

Today we visited Scranton's Trolley and Steamtown railroad museums. We've always really liked model trains, but today we found out about "live steam" engines. These aren't electric - they have actual scaled-down steam engines. How amazing is that? You can literally look into the firebox in that pic. The detail on these trains was staggering. Weathered and painted with excruciating care, the more powerful ones pulled long strings of boxcars with ease, puffing and clattering along just like the big guys. As I explained to the guys there, we've been doing "full scale" hobbies with the cars, but I know our future holds mini-railroading. It was so cute to see them shoveling coal into the fireboxes with tiny scoops. It's a great combination of aesthetic crafting and engineering science. Check out the speed in this video I took: Notice the wood- and coal-laden engines in the foreground.

It won't be this year... we're gonna hafta be rich. Ridiculously rich. These things get complex!

Oh yeah... the big trains were cool too. :)

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Love Day!

We're staying home tonight and making steak & shrimp fondue. Yum!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Tagged like a half-price skein of silk

Shawnee got me. We were Secret Pals way back when.
"Here are the rules, and they must be posted to your blog.
Link to the person’s blog who tagged you.
List seven random and/or weird facts about yourself.
Tag seven random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.
Let each person know that they have been tagged by posting a comment on their blog."

These things are always a challenge for me. There's no shortage of weirdness in my life, but my friends & regular readers already know most of it. The rest I have to keep quiet due to an arrangement with the Justice Dept (kidding!). So... the bizzaro car stuff, the fiber addiction, Matt's ex having a wife of her own now, Girlie, our meat-eating bunny, my powerdwarf status... that's all old news. But I've been tagged, and must comply. *ahem*

1) Carrot cake is my favorite. With cream cheese icing, of course.
2) I once out-shot a Special Forces (Green Beret) team captain.
3) I've hunted for food. I only ate squirrel once, though. YUCK.
4) If I could have any brand-new auto in the world I'd take a SmartCar.
5) I have an extremely sensitive sense of smell.
6) Although I have always abhorred cigarettes, and give free smoking cessation treatments as part of my mission to put the tobacco companies out of business, I am a smoker in about 30% of my dreams. Past life, maybe?
7) Tomatoes make my hands hurt. I order white pizza now.

Tagees: I really hate putting people on the spot. And most of my bloggy friends have already been nailed. Let's make this a voluntary tagging, shall we? This means YOU!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Charming Creepiness

Girlie, Matt & I ventured out to New Hope, PA today. It's a cute town with lots of offbeat shops and old architecture. After an overpriced lunch, we found TearDrop Memories. This is a peculiar little store, long and narrow, that gets stranger the farther back you go. Old photos and Victorian birdcages yield way to memorial jewelry (pictured: the mesh is hair from the deceased) and antique medical instruments for both humans and animals. Greg took great pleasure in showing us his pump for draining bovine udder infections and the ultra-rare sheep chastity belt. Then there were the old anatomy texts for embalmers (emphasis on the vascular system, natch).

Every inch of the place revealed another set of startling treasures. If you're looking for the memorable and unusual, you can't go wrong here. But please, when considering a birthday gift for me, skip the infant death mask, okay?

Friday, February 08, 2008


Eons ago in acupuncture school I dreamed up a logo for the Rose Family Clinic. Many extended begging and threatening sessions later, my superior-in- (nearly) -every-way husband finally did the Illustrator work. I just ordered a huge stack of new cards. Just in time - With all my aggressive marketing I am literally down to 10, aside from that box with the horrid typo.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Havin' a little par-tay

My birthday is the 25th, but nobody wants a party on a Monday. So come celebrate on Sunday evening! Food, fun, dancing, the works. :)

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Day Trip to DC

Today Preston, Matt & I ran down to the nation's capital on a wild impulse. Being geeks, of course, we headed straight for the Mall. We'd both spent a lot of time there in the past, so it was fun to compare our memories with the modern Smithsonian. My hungry hubby snacked on a few of the major buildings, then we wandered through the Air & Space, where I could practically give a tour. Still. The exhibits are all the same. Even the "Leading Edge" section, supposedly the newest space technology, hasn't been updated. So sad. The only modernized area was the food court. I remembered it as a dark, crowded carousel, loaded with foil-wrapped burgers. Now it's all glass, flooded with natural light, and highly efficent. I'd love it if it weren't McDonald's. Sigh. I guess that's how they could afford it.

The Washington Monument was next, but the only timed tix left would have gotten Preston towed. Ok, then on to the Natural History Museum. The fossils and ancient ocean display were great, but we were really impressed by the mammal exhibits. Old-timers will remember the launching tiger on the giant raised slab in front of the gift shop. Now, the shop is gone/moved and there are tons of dynamic posed critters. The presentation is really fresh and the taxidermy is excellent. Well done, guys!

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Sea Socks 2008 sailing soon!

An Alaskan cruise!

Matt's already been there, done that, so he's going to hold down the fort, but since I signed up during PKF I've been all atwitter. Imagine... a huge, stately ship, laden with glamour and a well-stocked buffet... sliding through the glorious Inner Passage... towering glaciers... exotic wildlife (and I'm not just talking about the onboard nightclub!)... even towels folded like animals. :) We're leaving from my old home port of Seattle, so I get to see my friends again. In fact, quite a few of my buddies are coming with me, because - get this - it's a knitting cruise! Lots of knitting celebs will be there. I'm so excited to meet them all... we'll have classes, and excursions to yarn shops in Ketchikan, Juneau, and Victoria, and pajama parties on the deck.

Last month I thought our financial downturn meant I'd have to cancel the trip. I was so bummed. For months every time a boat or a big chunk of ice came on TV I've started bouncing around with glee. I had to make it work! Besides, I'd already paid a big deposit. So I packed three other girls into a teeny cheapo cabin, and sold my Joy spinning wheel. That got me enough to cover the remaining cost plus airfare. Don't worry, I still have the Minstrel. It's a good trade for a memory like this. :)

I'm sticking to my vow not to buy any yarn this year, but I'll open my clinic on board for wooly donations. :)

Wanna go? The deadline is Feb 15th. Other adventurers include Emma, Holly, & Pam. Can't beat that with a stick.