Thursday, May 19, 2005


Wild and Wooly

We had a tragedy today. There was a thunderstorm and lightning and such and I HAD TO SWITCH OFF MY COMPUTER FOR AN HOUR!!!1!

You know what that meant, yes? No. Internet. Quite frankly I don't know how it survived without me. I know how I survived without it, though; after casting on for a Debbie Bliss baby sweater (Quick Baby Knits, page 10) I took pictures of my fleece.

First, the stash. Outside, so that the delicate sensibilities of Mr. Rabbitch are not offended. He's so dainty, you know.

All four of those containers are jam-packed. And when I say jam-packed, I mean ...

That's the lightest one. In hono(u)r of Trixie I took a picture of the one containing the least amount of sheep pee.

It pulls apart, it feels good, it's soft and not all mooshed up. I'm pleased.

I had a fabulous thing happen today, also. I have been given a little damaged fleece:

to try to do something with. It was unfortunately damaged by the farmer, who doesn't raise these sheep for wool (I'm trying not to say the "m" word in the presence of my fleece, but "not wool" pretty much implies "for eating" in my books) and was going to ask a student to spin it for him. In the hope of saving her some work and not covering her in sheepshit (he seems to have no such qualms about me. He knows I'm from Glasgow and have therefore been covered in far worse), he washed the fleece.

Three times.

In warm water.

With agitation.

Some of it pulls apart but some is a little matted and some is clearly felted.

Obviously, this is beyond my level of expertise (seeing my expertise at the moment can be measured in no digits at all) and so I sought out someone at the college who I had been told was a "master spinner", seeing this particular fleece is of sentimental value.

Well. Dude. Like only president of her guild, or what?

I had never met this woman before and she was on the phone when I got to her office. I asked her to call me about spinning and left her my extension number.

She called back within the half hour and I don't think I've ever been made to feel more welcome or included. She understood completely. She thought it was "neat" that I was learning this online, instead of "wacked". She shared her stash collecting experiences, invited me to a fleece fair next weekend (I'm working, dammet!), and within minutes we were exchanging links so that she could look at some carders I'm thinking of buying, etc. etc.


This woman said that she had so much fleece that she went on a diet, said she couldn't buy one more ounce until she reduced her stash by 50%.

Dudes, it took her two years!

She thought that all of the yarn exchanging going on between bloggers was fantastic, and suggested I join a spinners guild because a) I could likely rent a drum carder for the summer and b) "we can help you hide fiber".


I may have found the woman I need to marry.

Anyhow, she's bringing in her carders on Tuesday and I'm bringing in the fleece and we're gonna have a consultation. If she thinks some of it can be saved (I'm pretty sure it can) then we'll discuss what to do and how.

I'm thinking with the rest of it, I'm going to stuff it into a couple of pillow covers knit with the baby silk that I got from MarQ1, and be content with that.

Man, spinners rock just as much as knitters, it would seem.

Yay, us.

The group of spinners I have recently met are MORE friendly, social, and generous than any knitters I have met.....although many of the spinners are ALSO knitters.

Looks like you are doing an excellent job of making those requests of "dog".
Thank you for being so concerned about my delicate sensabilities. I worry though that you are one of those complusive hobbyists and that this new phase will simply lead to another and to another. Eventually burying you the detritus of your own making....
~eventually~? Dude, you haven't seen my house!
HEY! I thought you were gonna marry ME!?! You know, so I can be a Canadian and all. It was that whole land feud thing wasn't it? I knew I shouldn't have told you that bit. Sheesh, I go away for a week, to work no less, and you up and find another girl to wed. *sigh* I shoulda known... ;-)

Oh, I can't see why I can't marry you all.
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