November 16th, 2012
Man, she looked warm.
But it was very, very, random.
August 31st, 2012
It was a typical midweek witching hour; frosh week had begun and there were undergrads chatting it up next to me; a homeless man was shuffling around behind me (he wasn't drunk, he said, he just had two broken legs); not a streetcar in sight.
Out of the corner of my eye I saw a young guy standing a bit back from the street, swaying as he peered into his wallet. After a few minutes of that, he approached me.
I said hello, and he said, "Where are we? Downtown . . . London?"
"No, Toronto," I said, hoping he meant London, Ontario.
"Oh man," he said, "This isn't where I wanna be."
I did the natural thing, and asked him where he wanted to be. He had difficulty answering the question, saying that he thought downtown would look different.
"I wanna go home," he told me. "My shins hurt and I wanna go home."
At this point, I figured I may as well play along and pretend that we were having a coherent conversation. I asked him where home was and again, he had difficulty answering the question. Then he changed tactics. He wanted to be somewhere where no one could find him, he said. He eyed my cupcake caddy, and I asked him if he wanted a chocolate cupcake. (What?? I'm nice!!)
He declined, saying that he "knew cupcakes." He knew what they were like. He wanted something different.
At this point, I was about to direct him over to Queen West, as there is a lot of hipster "different" over there, when he offered me a credit card.
"I want you to take this," he said, "so they can't follow me."
"I think you should keep that and use cash to get where you're going so that they can't trace you. Once you get rid of that," I replied, indicating the card, "it'll be really hard to get back. You should keep it until you're sure."
"You're right, you're right," he said.
I thought about putting him in a cab and sending him home, but I didn't see any ID in his wallet -- and thought that if he was like most college students, that address wouldn't be where he was staying anyway. We continued talking in circles for another few minutes, when I saw a streetcar approaching.
"Do you have somewhere to stay tonight?" I asked him.
"Are you sure?"
"Do you know how to get there?"
"Are you sure?"
"I think you should go there now."
I started to head toward the streetcar, and he flings $5 at me.
I'm not sure what happened, I'm not sure who he was, I'm not sure if he was rewarding me for not taking his credit card, or if he was just some 19 year old, hepped up on goofballs.
In any case, I picked up the $5.
It was very, very random.
June 15th, 2012
May 28th, 2012
1. Are you always happy with your FO’s?
For you non-knitters out there, FO = finished objects. I'm usually happy with my FOs, because if I don't like it, I start over much earlier in the process. I don't make things that I wouldn't use myself or that I wouldn't want to receive as a gift.
2. Are you sometimes so disappointed that you frog everything and start a new project? Why? Color? Yarn? Making? Too small? Too large?
Ummmmm, I don't think so. Oh no, that's a lie! I started making a baby jacket and frogged it because the sizing was all kinds of wrong. It was coming out huge and I didn't know what I did wrong. See question 4.
3. Do you wear your knits or do they end up at the bottom of a cupboard? If so, why? How do they age after being washed and worn?
Oh no, I wear things that I've made for myself. If I don't like it, I think it's a waste of time and yarn to let it sit at the bottom of my cupboard. For myself, I've only made socks and scarves, so I haven't had to worry about fit (yet). They've washed up just fine.
4. Do you always make a swatch? (maybe it should have been the first question, lol ?!)
Another explanation for non-knitters: a gauge swatch is when you take a pair of needles and knit up a small swatch with the yarn that you want to use for a particular project. It's supposed to have the exact number of stitches as specified in the pattern to ensure that a garment comes out being the correct size. I do almost always swatch, although I don't swatch properly. So I'll make the gauge square to know that I've had the correct needles, but I don't wash the swatch afterward. I haven't made anything where fit is incredibly important yet though, but I'm going to have to change that soon.
5. Finally, would you rather work with some yarns you know well rather than others to avoid bad surprises?
I don't really like surprises. I love discovering new yarns, especially as there are so many out there. If I see something that I love in a shop, I have no problems buying it even though I've never worked with it before. If I'm looking for yarn for a particular prizes, however, I'm going to look at suggested yarns for the project, as well as yarns that other people like.
May 17th, 2012
We were up at 7 a.m. to head across the street and watch her while her parents went out to get a procedure done. Yes, I wore pajamas. Yes, we all slept half the time. No, she didn't have any accidents. Did I mention how precious she is??
May 15th, 2012
I contacted someone at the suggestion of himself's boss. He's agreed to sit down with me for coffee and talk about the industry up here, advice, blah blah blah. Basically, I was attempting to work on my networking skillz . . . and I thought the guy was meeting me as a favor to himself's boss. So we met for coffee -- a casual meeting, mind you -- and after chatting for half an hour, he pretty much offered me a job. Part time, full time, contract, long-term, whatever I wanted.
It’s an established publishing house, a bit of a commute, but long term they’re looking to move back downtown very close to where I live, which would be good. Not everyone works on site, so work-from-home options are probable. The department is the same as what I was in when I last left book publishing, and instead of assisting, I would actually be making deals. SCARY. But I would also obviously be learning as I go, working alongside this guy, and get to travel to the biggest trade fairs. A bigger/more traditional publishing house might be more comfortable for me because I would be lower down on the totem pole, but I would also be more vulnerable when cuts roll around and almost certainly wouldn’t get paid as much. Worst-case scenario: I do well and within six months, I'd have a base in the industry here and be able to move around to other places a bit better. He’s the one who mentioned that, as well as acknowledging that time frame. I could learn a lot at this place, and it could prove to be decently lucrative in the long-term.
Plus, any money is good at the moment, and I'm beginning to feel a bit useless. I'm thinking that I'll start with a short-term contract, just to see how it goes. That will also get me through the summer, which is completely dead and therefore places are less likely to be hiring.
Seems like my days of loafing about are coming to an end.
QUICK -- to the couch!
May 11th, 2012
In fact, I have absolutely no excuse for not writing, other than I don't FEEL like it. You can't force this stuff, y'know?
My days have looked something like this:
I roll out of bed around 10 a.m. The sun is usually shining, the birds are usually chirping, and I go out on the back deck to do yoga before I make my morning coffee. I then sit down to write for about an hour. After that, I shower and get down to business job hunting and networking and all of that stuff until lunch. At lunch, I eat and go for a bike ride. Then I come back and resume job hunting and networking. I call it quits around 4 p.m., when I head out to the front deck with a cup of tea/cocktail and a book. I start prepping for dinner around 5:30. Dinner comes out of the oven/off the stove around 7. It's delicious and nutritious. It's still been light outside, so after dinner I take a quick stroll around the 'hood. Then I come back home and get cuddly with Roxie. Himself is sometimes there, sometimes not. Knitting is sometimes on the agenda, sometimes not. I go to bed around midnight, tired but fulfilled.
That is mostly a lie.
I do usually roll out of bed around 10. But it is not always sunny, and I do not always do yoga on the deck. (I don't even really like yoga, but the studio where I used to take pilates classes stopped having pilates classes a while ago, and I'm desperate.) I do not write. I do, however, start my day with coffee and job hunting/networking, but it takes about an hour. Okay, I'm lying on two counts. I usually catch up with my Google Reader first because, you know, other people's lives are IMPORTANT. Then comes the job hunting/networking, which lasts about half an hour. Maybe 45 minutes. BBC World is on in the background. I do absorb some information. Sometimes. By this point I'm getting disgusted with myself and I shower and grab something to eat. Then I flip on HGTV, and all is lost. I don't really like Property Brothers, so if that's on I will do the afternoon job hunting/networking thing. It's usually shorter than the morning edition. I'm constantly checking Ravelry. Around 4 I go out on the front deck to get some fresh air. That lasts for about five minutes. The next few hours usually consist of listening to music and reading a book, sometimes cooking, but just as often heating up leftovers. I love leftovers. If himself is working, he comes home late and we'll pop out a couple of episodes of Mad Men (we've been rewatching the entire series). I usually crawl into bed around 2 a.m., and if I'm lucky I've washed my face, brushed my teeth, and flossed. If Roxie's lucky, I've cleaned her litter box. Rinse and repeat.
Things are about to change, though. For one, I'm gonna go crazy at Evergreen Brick Works tomorrow, so plant-tending will be added to the schedule. Oh, and also, I got a job offer. I'd tell you more about that, but I'm now off schedule and need to shower.
Oh, did I mention my mother-in-law is in town? She's settled into the routine quite well and has been happy as long as there are occasional bouts of shopping. Done and done.
May 4th, 2012
She was sobbing, screaming, and wandering around with no purpose.
"TAYLOR, WHERE ARE YOU?!??!?"
Ooooookay, I thought. This woman is obviously in distress. So, being the good Samaritan that I am, I pulled over and approached her (albeit quite cautiously).
"Do you need help?" I asked, thinking that her child or her dog had wandered off or something.
"Ohh . . . oh, I don't know," she said, looking around. "I lost my boyfriend, I don't know where he is."
I paused. I mean, what was I supposed to say to that? She was having a freaking meltdown -- on the other hand, if her boyfriend was anywhere within a two/three-block radius, he would've heard her. Also, how do you lose your partner on an uncrowded sidewalk???
I asked if she'd tried calling his phone. It turned out they're from out of town, and don't have cell phones. I asked if they were staying with friends; maybe we could try calling them. No, they weren't. She said that it was okay, that she'd find him somehow. She wandered off, looking forlorn.
It was kinda sad, kinda weird.
And very, very random.
April 25th, 2012
Don't worry, though. While I finished unpacking and have been tidying and organizing and rearranging, himself still does the cleaning. Let's not get crazy here.
April 18th, 2012
I know, you guys know a lot of things that I hate. But in this instance, I'm talking about doing things that don't come naturally. Not so much dusting or vacuuming (because let's be honest, I do neither of those things), I'm talking schmoozing.
I'm sure I've mentioned it before, but I'm not a schmoozer. I'm not one of those people who are born to be put in an awkward situations and slick their way out of them. I'm not one of those people who can be put into a crowded room and leave that room having a bunch of new friends. On the contrary -- I am one of those people who, when left to her own devices with a bunch of strangers, does her best to a) find the bar, and 2) find a way to lean against the bar just so so as not to appear pariah-like. "I'm not talking to anyone because I don't know anyone here, I just choose not to talk to anyone. It's my choice, you see."
I only bring this up because I was in just such a situation last night, and I imposed it upon myself. You see, in many industries it's not what you know but who you know. Job openings aren't posted anywhere, but John knows Mary who knows Greta who knows Brandon who knows that Hachi is looking for a job. That means it would behoove me to know as many Johns and Marys and Gretas and Brandons and Hachis as possible. So last night I went out to a launch for a new issue of a publication. I figured that it was free, it wasn't that far, I wasn't doing anything, and if I hated it, I could always go home. I didn't bring anyone with me; if my goal was to meet new people, I didn't want to bring someone I knew who I'd be talking to the entire time. And, well, the first half hour was pretty awkward. I even had a drink and wasn't feelin' it. My location was all wrong, and I couldn't get any conversation going. I wanted to go home, I did. But I enjoyed the outfit I had on, so I wanted to get some more mileage out of it. (Nevermind that I wore it to a play Monday night.) So I went back to the bar, relocated myself, scoped out someone else who was alone, and ended up chatting the rest of the night away. I met a handful of new people, contact information was given, and I left feeling pretty darn good about myself. So good, in fact, that I ended up at himself's place of business for a nightcap.
I hate networking and schmoozing. I will never do it willingly. I am jealous of all of you who can do it effortlessly. I hate that it's such a big part of things. But for brief periods of time, I can do it if I have to.
And that, my friends, is called growing.