07 March 2007

Back (thank the goodnesses) and showing off tattoos

Sorry for disappearing. It was a very intense week of work, combined with some very intense conversations with the boyfriend (all ending well, but still, exhausting in their intensity) that made it so I hardly knit, and even more hardly thought, and certainly didn't blog.

I took yesterday off to recover, and I'm back in full form today.

I've come to realize that something I need to learn in order to simplify my life is how much more efficiently I can complete certain things when I devote all of my attention to them. I'm applying this lesson first to knitting.

I cleaned out the UFO basket. I have a pile of reclaimed yarn that was rewound and deposited back into the stash. I have several socks that need mates, one sweater that needs sleeves, another that needs a back, one that has to get sewn and cut and then I'm going to just work turning edges for it, plus add in a zipper (I think). I have too many things on the needles, and it keeps me from focussing. I know this. So I'm going to try and get that under control, and proceed from there. The biggest problem is that several of the projects in question have gotten to that mind-numbing place. It's different for every project...for the sweater from the Holiday VK, it's the endless expanse of stockinette before I get to do the waist shaping again. For the Annie Modesitt cardi from one of last year's IK, it's the sleeve issue. Socks...well, that's obvious. It may be that a couple of them just go into the drawer as "odd socks" and get worn when I'm just around the house and it doesn't matter. We'll see.

All of that said, the one thing I didn't have on the needles yesterday, as I was rushing around, about to head off to see Bridge to Terabithia (I completely loved it, they kept the story perfectly together, I sobbed for twenty minutes), was a plain sock that I could knit in the dark. I grabbed some needles (I don't even know what size they are, probably US 1s) and a ball of the Regia Bamboo that I got from Sheri at the Loopy Ewe a few weeks ago, and cast on in the car.

The movie was as long as the stockinette. The ribbing was done while waiting for the movie to start, and I turned the heel at the local Irish Pub, waiting for Robb to be done work. It was absurdly cold last night, so I passed the time with an older gentleman who looked a little too interested in my socks until I pointedly mentioned my boyfriend, and then we settled down into a friendly conversation about knitting and modern comedians. Don't ask me how these relate, I've no idea.

I'm utterly charmed by this yarn. It's cool and soft and cotton feeling, but without the stiffness of cotton, and the ribbing actually stretches and fits well.

I'm especially endeared by the way the Eye of the (Partridge? Peacock? Owl? Whichever) heel shows off the variegated colors.

Now, there's been a lot of tattoo showing off going on in blogland, and I always love to show off my stories. So:

The first tattoo I got is on ... well, Robb says it's the top of my ass, I say it's the bottom of my back, those khakis I'm wearing would normally fall just below his head. It's your call, I'm fine either way. He's biggish; he'd be covered by the palm of my hand.

This tattoo I got when I was nineteen years old and living in London. I'm an adopted kid, and the year before, I had made contact with my biological family for the first time. I'd grown up believing that my father's family was of English, Irish, and Scottish heritage. It was one of the few facts I could throw out when my friends started talking about their parents and their histories, and I clung to it like a liferaft sometimes.

When I finally met Frank, nineteen, and a little bit more comfortable in my heritage and my experience, I found out that his aunt had done more research, and the branch (root?) of the family they'd thought was Irish was actually Welsh.

The oldest of my three biological brothers drew this for me. He based it on the traditional Welsh dragon that you find on the Welsh flag, and emailed it to me. I shrunk it slightly, and took it to Kensington High Street, where I found the most amazing tattoo artist I'd seen at the time, and he found the reddest ink he had, and I thought of Scully briefly before I had this dragon inscribed on my back. To remind me of family, and what it means.

The second tattoo I've already talked about so we'll skip that one.

The third is the most recent (duh), and I got it right here in Burlington.

This one I designed myself, and the fuzziness is the picture, not the tat. Do you know how hard it is to take a picture of your own bicep? I'm just saying.

This is probably the tat I thought the longest about. I hadn't been happy with the second one, so I carefully considered what I wanted to do before I got this one. The character in the center is the character for "self" (I was more careful this time) and the outside is a proper Celtic Knot, no beginning or end, so all together, the symbol means (to me) protection of self. I've sense been chastized by one very nice Chinese woman who told me that I should have added in another character to make it mean "my self," but this time, I'm glad I didn't. I like the way it looks, and what it means. A higher sense of self than the self I am continually aware of. Does that make sense?

Anyway, those are my tats. I've been contemplating a fourth lately, but I'm not sure what or where, so it's not high on my priority list. Especially since I'll be tightening the yarn belt for a month or so.

All right, off to knit. Tomorrow, kitchener stitch, for the benefit of B.


AlisonH said...

I'm not a tattoo person overly, but I like them. There Be Dragons. (For you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup, and all that.) I just like them.

Tammy said...

Oh, I loved Bridge to Terabithia. I never read the book, but I have it on CD now, so I am going to listen to it. Kim and I got to see it as a preview. There were probably 300 people in line before us, so they had two showings of it. It was so cool!! I cried for the last 20 minutes of the movie as well. I am sure my eyes were red and swollen when we came out.

No tats on me, but I do love the dragon.

Anonymous said...

yea kitchener!