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fortunes told 1.

On my recent trip to Santa Barbara I unearthed this photo from my dad’s collection. My mother, with my childhood gypsy fortune teller, circa 1969-ish.
Given that I was in my childhood home and therefore imbued with a certain visceral sense of recollection, I was deeply moved by this. It embodies a bit of the atmosphere that I grew up in. So much magic, so much possibility!

I started mulling over what kind of alchemy do I want to do in my life; it used to seem clear, and yet these days, as my level of contentment grows, I don’t feel much need to manipulate the world to suit my ends. Hmmm. What came to mind, strangely enough perhaps, was the idea (not for the first time, but with a new urgency) of making striped sweaters, seamless, rugged, country, hippie even. Is this a manifestation of some “earth magic?” I think so.
So I started this:
magic stripes

But today, I am working on the endless sideways knitted border of the pi shawl.

pishawl

Almost done.

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My life is intensely social, now I am in town. Still, my creative side has been pouring into relatively slow-moving projects (read: socks). I sometimes find myself hankering after a more dynamic element, collaborative undertakings. For inspiration, I can visit such sites as that of the Yard Dogs Road Show, a group of performers whom I met 8 or so years ago when they were still putting on shows under a different name…
Their aesthetic is pretty exciting to me, given a certain story I like to tell about myself, although I do have issues with the burlesque (and that’s another story, dear reader), and I strongly suspect that my next phase of life is going to contain its fair share of stage moments.
Collaboration is occurring, sneaking up on me, perhaps, or rather, flowing unplanned out of my new found friendships, and also out of the theatrical/performance-oriented swirl of activities that surround me here. Some of these collaborations are not mine, but those of the kids. Last night was another Acoustic Junction at the Blue Scorcher Bakery, and a raucous scene it was, with one song in which almost all the performers sat in, Opal included, not to mention the three year olds winding their ways around the space in impromptu dances, and spilling out onto the sidewalk after whooping adults… I even sang a song, which was a bit of a leap for me. (And subsequently I received a beautiful compliment on my voice, thanks Paul Hoskin.)
I know, too, that there are going to be as many costuming opportunities as I am willing to let into my life. I am opening the door slowly, it is creaking ajar, somewhat reluctant, needing oil perhaps, but I imagine that once I get a taste of the party that is going on in the room behind that door, my enthusiasm will provide the needed lubricant for those rusty hinges.
In the meantime, today, I will work on socks, but also spent a couple of the hours before work setting up the sewing machine and making a little something for myself, not telling what, yet, not ’til I’ve done it…

Off to costume!

well, golly I think it has. Must be time to post to the blog. I actually have this task on a list for the weekend. I don’t know how many times I have come out to the computer to post and gotten distracted, and then gotten distracted from that… and so on. Do it, now, Bramble.

Nothing like the smell of fermenting cabbage to let you know it’s a good day.
nothing so beautiful as a bowl of wilted greens
Our local farmer’s market has started up and I bought everything for making kim chee, baby bok choy, daikon radish (I use the greens in the ferment, too), garlic, green onions. The ginger, salt, and chiles needed had to come from offsite, but it’s going on now. I could make up a gallon a week and then have some for a few months! Oh heaven.
Speaking of local, last night’s dinner was comprised of food that was almost all grown or at least processed in this region. flour, olive oil, and vinegar were the only imported items. Wild caught salmon, salad greens, potatoes, blackberry vinagrette, locally baked bread. I’m no foodie, but, damn that was good.

Alice knocked me out with her combinations of knitted textures today.
knitted textures
I made the shawl but not the sweater.

I love wool! I love wool! I love wool!
There, I’ve said it.

Speaking of wool, I have been knitting knitting socks. The end is in sight on this pair of socks for a swap, and it needs to be. I got my partner’s socks in the mail Friday, so now I feel abashed. I can’t show a picture of my knitting til I get them sent, I suppose, although I said right out what I making several posts back. let it suffice to say that I am extremely happy with the progress, late-ish though it may be.

Thursday I wrote a bunch of notes for a blog entry and then scrapped them as being too self-deprecating. Worth keeping is the clarification of the aesthetic that inspires me/I am striving for. It went something like “organic outcroppings from structured technique.”
Look at kjoo’s shop for example.
My work seems flat, but I think it because I have looked at it way too much. Plus, it is a bit flat.
I am praying to break through my aversion to trading my work for money. What’s up with that? I am sure I subvert my success by being unable to imagine myself succeeding.
Wow, that’s profound.
It’s okay if people pay people to make what they do not! Or more specifically, if I am one of the people that gets paid!
Anyhoo, my problem is really that I imagine myself successful in an entirely different economic paradigm, and I need to get out of my hobbit hole and rewild the world I live in.
Which is, incidentally, what I am already doing. :)

perfect day

Beautiful beautiful day. This is where Opal gets to spend her horse time. It’s quite a menagerie over at Joan and Vicki’s.

barnyard

These beasts have very very good lives.

Some links that have been moving me:
I want this wooden bento box. And this book on making old fashion root beer and ginger ales.
Recently added to the links list is Kiliii Dreaming. Nature photography for the most part. Here is a great picture of turkey vultures. They are among my favorite birds. Kiliii’s site came to my attention after he built a driftwood kayak with Mark’s friend Brian of Cape Falcon Kayak.

The recent disappearance of the honeybees has been really hard on me. I will need to make a post just about my thoughts about this. There are many.

You know I like to keep you abreast of Opal’s musical preferences. They are so varied! In current hot hot rotation are Kraftwerk’s Trans-Europe Express, an Old school hip hop mix tape that I have been dragging around for 18 years (Siberian Nights!), and Nightmares on Wax‘s DJ Kicks. Gotta love it, especially as it is playing all day. Poor Alice. She likes the dulcimer.

Opal says, “Records are like big, lo-tech cds.  They got the grooves and stuff.  They got the grooooooves.”