Strike one and a half

Gravity: The force that attracts a body to the centre of the earth or other celestial body. (The Oxford Encyclopedic Dictionary)

It is a cruel truth that the female form is an eventual victim of gravity. I have accepted this, and I don’t really mind that my…er…assets…are being drawn ever southward. I still like them and I feel pretty good about the years of devoted service that they gave me and my babies during the milky years. I admit that every so often I look at myself and think fondly of their previous higher location on my body, but I’m ok with it, and besides…I don’t think that they are That Low. I feel (despite gravity and the aforementioned years of service) that their location on my body is still totally within normal limits. Nobody points and stares, I don’t catch people drifting their eyes down my front with an incredulous stare….I’ve never been taken aside an spoken to by a caring friend about the stunning and catastrophic lowness of my breasts.

This is why I was stunned to discover that they are in entirely the wrong place for the Silk Corset. I finished the lace, did the armholes (that’s a provisional cast on sitting there. I had a failure to commit to an armhole/sleeve idea so I weenied out.) and read the next part of the pattern. The pattern instructed me to knit ribbing for a while, and then to do the “Bust Decrease” that’s the part that makes the corset swoop in attractively under your normally located breasts. I knit for the required 2.75 cm and began the chart.

It occurred to me that this did seem sort of high to begin to be “under” the breasts, but Claudia and I have both noted that this top doesn’t have tons of coverage, but still….

I thought about my breasts then, with the corset held up to them and tried to figure out how they could be so far off of where they were supposed to be. Then I got my bra. (Always thinking…that’s me.) I put on my bra, held the corset up to my chest where a corset should go and discovered that even with the help of underwire, elastic and positive thinking, the under the breast shaping of the top, the place where it got smaller was falling right where I got bigger. I can’t put the corset lower because I can’t move the location of my arms…and therefore, the armholes. There was only one possible reason that this corset could not be working.

My breasts are in the wrong spot and I have never noticed.

I gave this a good think. The only way this will work is if my breasts are way higher. Did the corset squeeze your breasts higher? Much higher? Like….UNDER YOUR CHIN?

I looked in the mirror. They seem normal. I turned sideways. Yup. That’s pretty much where I expect them to be. (Pretty much, because I have accepted the gravity issue from above.) I think about the times I’ve gone out in public bra-less. Since I think the restraining force of the brassiere is for special occasions, this isn’t as seldom as you would all hope. (If this upsets you, phone my Mum. She would love to talk over my bra-lessness and lack of lipstick.) I didn’t trip over my breasts on these occasions, or have to lift them up to zip up my pants. When I bend over to pull weeds I don’t hold them back with one hand to see the dandelions and except for one occasion (when I asked for it) I don’t receive mountains of bra’s as gifts in what could be considered an avalanche of suggestion.

Then it hits me. The letters after my name are IBCLC. I have seen more breasts than Hugh Hefner. The chances that I passed this exam but failed to notice that my breasts are freakishly placed on my own body are about the same as the chances that Pierce Brosnan is dropping by this afternoon to do my laundry nude.

(Although Dude? If you’re reading this, we’re almost out of detergent. We use unscented and the store is a block west.)

Sure enough, I rechecked the pattern. 2.75 INCHES, not centimetres. Another tragic error caused by the senseless lack of continutity between the designers country and my own.

The location of my breasts is normal. Thought you’d want to know.

I ripped back the half corset I had knit, added the appropriate amount of ribbing and voila.


What I did on my summer Vacation, part 2

(again…feel free to skip this is you don’t care about the minute details of this week of my life. )

The day we left Tupper and Susans we began biking again from our Nations Capitol, Ottawa.


There’s Ken and the sock with the East Block behind them. The East block is historic on the hill in that its appearance really hasn’t changed much since confederation. The offices of Canada’s first Prime Minister, Sir John A. Macdonald are inside and citizens are welcome to wander around. Sir John A. is the father of Confederation and famous for two other things:

Macdonald was well known for his wit and also for his alcoholism. He is known to have been drunk for many of his debates in parliament. One famous story is that during an election debate Macdonald was so drunk he began vomiting violently on stage while his opponent was speaking. Picking himself up Macdonald told the crowd, “see how my opponent’s ideas disgust me.”


(The West block has offices of politicians and such. You can’t go in there – even if you really want to talk to Stephen Harper. ) Doen’t both Ken and the sock look moved? You betcha. Doesn’t Sam look like she thinks Ken might have a few loose stitches? Oh yes.


A picture of the five of us (that’s me in the apparently day-glo orange tank. I had no idea it was so bright.) standing atop Parliament Hill with our trusty steeds. You can get a pretty good idea of how much gear we carry from this shot. Each person has two panniers (those saddlebags hanging over the rear wheels.) One is loaded with their personal stuff and the other holds their contribution to the family load. Sam carries the camping pots, Meg everything to do with light (flashlights, lanterns, candles) etc. Atop each persons panniers are perched their sleeping bag and thermarest. (A thermarest is an extraordinary contribution to civilization. It’s a very small self inflating air mattress. If you are camping on hard rocky ground everywhere you go it is very easy to develop an emotional relationship with it.) All the big stuff, like tents (and beer) are in the trailer behind Ken’s bike.


The teenaged girls sitting again, this time with the Peace Tower in the background.


This is the Governor General’s Residence, a short ride down Sussex drive. In Canada, the Governor General is also the Commander in Chief and the Queen’s representative. Hence the very Buckingham-esque guard.


We couldn’t resist. The dude is (just like in England) instructed to ignore anything that goes on that isn’t a threat. I’m still wondering what he thought though. Don’t you think it was killing him not to know what was up with the sock?

For the record, in the interest of public safety and in keeping with Canadian laws and general philosophy, that’s a plastic rifle he’s got there.


The number on that post reads “24”. Canadians know where the sock is.


From there, we go along the Ottawa/Outaouais River (depending on what side of it you are on.) for ages. The Ottawa River bike path system is awesome.


Still on the bike path, a rare picture of the teenaged girls in motion.


At lunch time (ok. A little later than lunchtime) we took the ferry across the river to Quebec to eat and gawk at the very famous and fabulously cool “Le Chateau Montebello“. (The link has better pictures and info) Even though we were way too sweaty and dirty and poor to be in the joint.


The sock was impressed. The Chateau Montebello is the worlds second largest log structure. (No, I don’t know what the biggest is) and it’s gorgeous. Even though it broke the bank I’m glad we did it.


We waited for the ferry back across the river….


and the sock rested. I know it looks rainy here but fear not for the trusty sock. It only rained once on the whole bike trip, and it was at night and we were safe and warm in the tents. Not one drop of rain fell on us on any tour day, and the only victims of the rain that is wandering off in this early morning picture was my right and Ken’s left Birkenstock, somehow left out it the rain. Both of us went “step, squish, step, squish, step, squish” for an entire day. You wouldn’t believe what that does for your mood.

On the road again:

Finally today, news on the tour front. Sarah-the-wonder-publicist has advised me that the fun continues and there are some people out there who are going to be happy. Read ’em and weep you persistent knitters….and never let it be said that Sarah isn’t a good listener.

Thursday September 22nd 7:00 The Sheep Shack in Holden, MA.

(They are asking people to RSVP. You can do so to this email: )

Friday September 23rd: Stitches East in Atlantic City: Signings at 12:30 at The Yarn Barn of Kansas booth, and at 2:00 at Rosie’s Yarn Cellar Booth

Saturday September 24th: Still at Stitches: a signing at The Mannings booth at 12:30 and a terrifying speech at dinner. (Note to self. Check hair carefully to make sure you rinsed it. Wear pants.)

Sunday September 25th: Still at Stitches, regardless of how humiliating the talk was the night before. Signing at The Mannings booth again at 12:30.

Monday September 26th: Lake Placid NY, 7:00 at Adirondack Yarns.

Tuesday September 27th: Canton NY 6-8:00 pm at Brewer Bookstore, St. Lawrence University.

Saturday October 1st : CHICAGO! (See? I told you Sarah was a good listener) Details of the location and hours to be announced as soon as Sarah gets them to me.

Thursday October 13th: Toronto Ontario. The Creative Sewing and Needlework Festival. I’ll be reporting at 1:00 for a talk and a signing.

Saturday October 15th: Rhinebeck Sheep and Wool Festival

Signing (and buying fiber) at Spirit Trail Fiberworks at 3:00.

Sunday October 16th: Still at Rhinebeck, drunk on yarn and knitting buddies and signing at Spirit Trail again at 11:00

Monday October 17th: Skeneateles (Can someone tell me how to say that?) NY at Creekside Books & Coffee, 7:00pm

Teusday October 18th: Acton, MA: Launch party and multi-author reading for Knitlit The Third: We Spin More Yarns at Willow Books. This promises to be the best knitting party all year. I’ve been promised cake. If you come, you could get some too.

Wednesday October 19th: Toronto, Ontario I’ll be the speaker at the Downtown Knit Collective at the Metro-Central YMCA at 7:30.

Visitors to the DKC are welcome to come.

Yours truly will take to the stage and….well. We’ll just see what happens. This event actually gives me the willies pretty badly. I LIVE in Toronto, so I can’t chant the mantra that gets me through all of my other events. Usually I stand up there, look out at all your smiling faces and know that if I arse it up, faint or swear…the odds are pretty good I’ll never see 90% of you again. That just doesn’t cut it if you are only a few blocks from home.

Phew. I’ll toss all that on the tour page when I’ve adjusted to the idea.