Thursday, March 27, 2008

Boomerangs & Seesaws

My old friend Jamie was in town last night. His girlfriend - Shannon Curtis - was supposed to play at the Iron Horse. I'm not going to bore you with all the details, but there was a mix-up and she didn't get to play in the end. Despite that disappointment, it was fabulous to see Jamie, catch up and share some gossip about our other high school friends.

Shannon is absolutely charming and talented. I'm listening to her CD "Boomerangs & Seesaws" as I type this. She has a new CD coming out today "Paris Can't Have You". You can hear the title track on her MySpace page. It's the loveliest thing I've heard in a long time. Also check out the tour schedule on the MySpace page. Those of you who read this who live in Burlington, Chicago, Boulder, Portland, etc. should go out and see her.

In knitting news I finished this:
Elizabeth Zimmerman's Feburary Baby Sweater in
Berroco Pure Merino Nuance.
(sidewalk artwork by Audrey)
Nora Noodle watch your mailbox.....

And started this:
Lace Ribbon Scarf from Knitty in
Great Adirondack Bamboo Cotton.

Finally, there was evidence this morning that spring may have finally come to the Pioneer Valley. I love how tulips look like hungry baby birds when they first come up.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Roar Your Terrible Roars!

I've just been reading, in Publisher's Weekly, about the movie version of Where the Wild Things Are due out (according to IMDB) in October 2009. Apparently Maurice Sendak has been in talks with studios for 15 years about making a movie and the end result is that he started his own production company and hired Spike Jonze and Dave Eggers of McSweeney's fame (and you know how I feel about McSweeney's....) to write the screenplay (Jonze will also direct). Jim Henson's Creature Shop is making the monster suits.

I love Dave Eggers! The best part of it (in my mind) is that Eggers is also writing a novel version of Sendak's story to be titled Wild Things. This is being done with Sendak's blessing and I suspect this might be HUGE. Who doesn't love the Wild Things? My 6th Grade class turned it into a play ourselves and put it on for the rest of the school (I played the dog...don't ask...). Every adult who grew up loving the story of Max taking off to a magic world full of monsters in the night is going to jump all over this novel.

According to IMDB the movie has some pretty big names in it, including Forest Whitaker as the voice of one of the beasts.

Unfortunately, there are some stories out there that say that the studio is not happy with the film and may be reshooting the entire thing and possibly firing Spike Jonze. This could explain the 2009 release date (apparently it was previously set for fall 2008). The PW article says the screenplay focuses largely on Max's relationship with the Wild Things and his journey back home.

I just wonder who's playing the dog?

Stuff White People Like

My cousin Caitlin is to blame for bringing this blog to my attention this morning and, thereby, causing me to waste a large amount of company time reading (and stifling giggles with tears of mirth running out the corners of my eyes).

Saturday, March 8, 2008

You're not in New England anymore.

Just around the corner from my hotel is the Buckhorn Saloon. The signs claim they have the world's largest collection of antlers.The Texas Ranger museum is also part of the saloon. I decided I needed to have lunch there and a friend who is also at this conference agreed to come. We did not pay the extra $16 to go into the museum (much as I would have liked to see the reconstructed Bonny and Clyde car...), but the restaurant was something in and of itself.

The whole room is full of dead stuffed animals and the walls are lined with heads. It's a bit disturbing - all of them watching you while you eat your cheeseburger. The mountain goats freaked me out the most. All of them had the front half of the goat mounted on a plaque to look like they are standing on a cliff. So strange.

There is a real, authentic, looking cowboy singing traditional songs ('Yippie Ky Yi Yea' and so on...). And not long after we arrived the reenacters from the Alamo started streaming in the door. It hurt my head a bit to see cowboys sharing tables with Santa Ana's soldiers. All of them wandering around with food trays and working the soda machines and lined up for the mens room was really surreal. I did manage to introduce myself to a certain Mr. Crockett who was sitting just behind us.

But, there's no basement....

I'm in San Antonio on a work trip. During a slow period this morning I went for a walk. My hotel is just a couple of blocks from the Alamo. I've been to the Alamo before and wasn't overly impressed with the exhibit. But I needed to get a gift for Ragamuffin who is feeding the beasties while I'm away. Turns out Thursday was the anniversary of the battle of the Alamo and this weekend there are big festivities going on. The plaza was swamped with cowboys and Santa Ana's troops getting ready to do a big reenactment.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Stay out of Vermont George, if you know what's good for you

For anyone who doesn't know, I'm from Vermont. I was actually born in Ohio, but spent most of my formative years in Vermont and consider it home. There have been quite a few times in the past when I've been proud of my home state. Today I am proud again. Not because of yesterday's primary (but I WAS pleased...), but because of the resolutions passed in the towns of Brattleboro and Marlboro.

Brattleboro is a cool place. I like it more every time I visit. It's just a short drive from where I live in Western Mass. There are a lot of funky artsy people there doing funky artsy stuff. There's good food and a great old movie theater. They have the annual 'Strolling of the Heifers' parade (It's a parade of cows. It's awesome.). Also it's legal to be naked on the streets of Brattleboro - just as long as you're not George Bush. Residents of Brattleboro and Marlboro, VT passed nonbinding resolutions yesterday authorizing police to arrest President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney for "crimes against our Constitution."

Vermont rocks.

Vermont is also nearing record snowfalls this winter. I was up visiting my parents a few weekends ago and the snow on the sides of the path to their front door was higher than my head. It's like walking through a tunnel. I exclaimed that it was just like when I was little and my mother pointed out that I'm much taller now. Oh yeah. Lots of snow. And they've had a lot more since I was there.

We had a storm here on Saturday and I refused to deal. I'm sooooooo ready for winter to be done. I didn't go outside all day. Traci and The Ragamuffin came through the 'secret passageway' (our basements are connected through the bulkhead) to my house. The Secret Passageway has become a great treat that we only use when the weather is bad. We watched some Sponge Bob, drank some juice boxes, ate pickles and danced to Elvis. I made scones.
These are Cheddar Pepper Scones adapted from a free recipe from Cabot. I didn't have fresh chives and I used dried thyme. I also didn't brush egg on the tops - just sprinkled on some extra cheddar. They were tasty. And now I have lots of ideas for other kinds of scones. I like my scones savory and find that most bakeshops make them way too sweet. There may be lots of experimenting in the coming weeks.

I also finished the Baby Soft Jacket for Haley's first birthday. This is not a color I would normally choose, but Haley (and her mom) need as much cheerfulness as they can get I think. Haley started chemo a couple of months ago and I hear it is making her quite sick. Her birthday party is Saturday, but I'll be in Texas this weekend, so this is going in the mail today.
Baby Soft Jacket from The Knitter's Book of Yarn by Clara Parkes
Just over 3 skeins of Araucania Nature Cotton (on close-out at Webs)