Longest Ever

I think that I am about to break the world record for longest post pretending to be about knitting. I’m going to catch you up on two last yarn parties (Knit! Yarn! Fun!) and show you all of the things the sock has done. Go get a coffee or a tea or if it’s night-time maybe you want a beer or something. This is going to be a humdinger. I’ll at least try for coherency.

Threaded Bliss

Dudes, the knitters at this shop really had their knit together (To borrow a phrase from Knit One) From the window proclaiming “Harlot is here”, spelled out in pictures of me (which flipped me out a little.) to the spontaneous pre-harlot entertainment (Which didn’t flip me out much. I live with a record producer, everyone we know either drops guitar picks or yarn.) to the karaoke microphone, and the store dog, this event had a vibe all it’s own.

Threadedblsscr1

Threadedblsscr2

(You know, I don’t want to jinx anything, but I do want to point out that our “when knitters run the world” plan may be coming along.)

Meangirlknittingbetty

Meangirl -Jen (who seemed very nice to me, though I hear that she’s partly responsible for the multi-me window display and Betty, hamming it up with the sock.

Betsyrosehips

Betsy here showed off her sock and demonstrated one of the best things about being on a yarn crawl knitting book tour. Getting to see yarn. How did I not know about a handpainted Opal? (Did I know and block it for my own good?)

Kellymacrec2

Kelly, who engaged in reciprocal blogging with me. (Can you do the sock shot with a sweater?)

Check this. Tisra, holding a tracing of her mate’s feet. She says she’s going to knit him socks.

Tisra

Can’t see it real well? Hold on. I’ll trace it for you.

Reallybigtisrafeet

Some dizziness and nausea are normal. Knitters, I cannot stress this enough. Tisra is illustrating why it is imperative that you check the feet of a prospective mate before you develop any feeling for them. This poor knitter has a husband with size 14 feet. She’s going to need twice as much yarn as anyone else, and way more liquor than is right. Poor thing. Let this be a lesson to you all. It’s just as easy to love someone with small feet.

Hope over to Sandra D and see some reasonably sized socks that are entering retirement.

Jinjifore was introduced to me, rather compellingly, as “the fish blanket lady”. That seems like an odd nickname, even for knitters, and we call people some odd stuff, so by way of explanation, the following image arrived in my inbox.

Fishblankettow

Yo. Individually knit and then sewn together tessellating fish. Boggles the mind, doesn’t it? She spoke clearly too, which I found remarkable, considering that this project (just the sewing alone) must have melted her brain and had it run out her right ear.

I left thinking that it wasn’t hard to tell that Ann and Kay had been there.

Annandkaywerher

You can track them this way. They leave a trail of them in their wake.

The next morning I fueled up on coffee and the car and driver arrived for me. We had a 5 hour drive from Nashville to Lexington KY. I know it should have been shorter, but there was some sort of hold up on the highway, and we had a period of stalled progress.

Cattlesmell2

Luckily for the sake of the blog, this indeterminately long break was spent in the fine company of some well-scented cattle, and I learned some stuff.

Castleky5

I learned that Kentucky has a castle.

Blackfences

I learned that it used to be true that farms raising Standard bred horses had black fences,

Whitefences

and farms raising Thoroughbreds had white fences. (But that’s not true anymore). I learned that a thoroughbred sired through artificial insemination can’t be registered as a thoroughbred and that stud horses only come in for the finish. A standard bred horse does all the foreplay. ( I thought that this was stunning. Imagine that. He doesn’t even have to bring her hay or speak nicely to her.)

Firsthorseraceky

and I learned that the first horse race in Kentucky was right by my hotel. (It was at this point that I, being sharp as a tack) began to understand that Kentucky may be a little “horsey”.

I went to the reception for the Bluegrass Book Festival Authors (I looked for Jane Fonda but she didn’t turn up.) and turned in.

The next morning I was scheduled to sign books at a booth for two hours, then a break, then an hour from 3-4, then a talk til 4. No problem. I’d had some trouble at the reception that had made me nervous though. Standing around with real authors, I had the distinct impression that when I said I wrote “knitting humour” that they other authors might have wondered how well that was going for me. Their skepticism was catching, and by the next morning I was very nervous.

Once again, knitters came through, and by the end of my morning signing, one of the writers from the night before had popped by my booth to tell me that he had decided to put a knitter in his next novel…since knitters seemed to “drive all the book fair traffic”.

Leahkent

There was Leah, in a brand new sweater. Kate who had a great sock.

Nancykatie

Nancy and Katie, a blurry (sorry guys) mother-daughter team, showing off their matching socks.

Prioritieswetky-1

On my lunch break, the lovely ladies of Team Thursday ( Debbie, Lindy, Dianne and Jane – shown here protecting fibre from the rain, we have our priorities) took me to lunch and told me about Dianne and Jane’s impending yarnshop “Magpie Yarns”. These ladies took such wonderful care of me all day. If I ever again have to depend on the kindness of strangers, let it be these women, and let it be in Lexington Kentucky. They have kindness and generosity down to an art.

On the way back, I spotted a protest. Intrigued, I followed up and talked with the gentlemen in question.

Vetsagainstjane

Turns out (the things Canadians are not up on just boggles the mind) that these are Vietnam Vets, protesting Jane Fonda’s appearance at the book festival based on some of her actions during that war. They spoke to me very eloquently and respectfully about their point of view, and I was struck by how much this meant to them 33 years later.

Donforjane

Leaving them and walking back to the Lexington Center, I met this man, Don. Don is a famous local activist and Vietnam resister from way back, and he held the sock and represented the opposite point of view.

(Never let it be said that the sock is not politically neutral. For wool, it’s remarkably bipartisan.)

Seeking the final piece of the puzzle, I made my way back to my booth, thinking that I would quickly sign a few books, and then head over to Jane Fonda’s booth and round out the socks experience.

This was not to be, however…since my line looked like this.

Linekenty

A whack of knitters led by Beth generously offered to undertake the mission, and made off with the sock. Unfortunately, for reasons that we will never fully understand, as they approached Jane at full speed, digital cameras, socks and assorted knitting held high…Jane was whisked off by her security team. Coincidence? I don’t think so.

They made do with the evidence of Jane Fonda left behind on her table.

Janefondastuff

I kept meeting knitters and socks

Sockweildingteams

and had the pleasure of finally putting a name to Stephanie B.’s face.

Stephanieglassstuff

Turns out that she’s as lovely as she is talented. Stephanie’s a glass worker, and I’ve been the lucky recipient of some of her beautiful things, including….

Glasswollpig

A hand made glass wool-pig. (Mine, mine all mine.)

Lexcrdbgf1

I gave a talk to another whack of knitters….

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(which had the bonus effect of stunning the book organizers.) and went to coffee with some very nice knitters, including Zabet, one of the brains behind the Anti-craft, Janis and Brooke (who designed this and this)

Brookeagain

Brooke demonstrated to the assembled throng that the gathering had a downright awesome knitting mojo going on, by finishing her baby sock with this much left of the green.

Brookesockmojo-1

Extreme knitting, and a sign that all was well in the universe and that Brooke is definitely on somebody’s good side.

I owe a special thanks to Janis, who helped me locate the best vegetarian take out in town for dinner. Much appreciated, and an extra thanks to Janis for standing by, holding my sandwich and tolerating the sock rituals while I photographed this.

Triangleparkinvschi-1

It’s several hundred young people from Lexington, gather together in Triangle Park as a part of the Night Commute for Invisible Children. It was a wonderful way to end it.

Anybody still here? 29 pictures and 20 links later I’m tired all over again and contemplating the bourbon balls graciously gifted to me. Tune in tomorrow when I actually take pictures of knitting…er, my knitting. I have been knitting. Really.

140 thoughts on “Longest Ever

  1. I’m the first, I’m…not the first! someone names grace beat me to it. Oh, phooey, later…

  2. Hi Stephanie,
    Just got back from a trip to Paducah, Kentucky (went on a bus trip to the quilt festival). If you’re ever there, stop by the yarn store (With Ewe in Mind?) – they have fibre also. Somehow the merino/silk blend jumped in my basket within 2 minutes of being in the store. They were even gracious enough to give Mum and I a ride downtown afterwards, as we had left the quilt tour to visit them. Drove through Lexington on the way home and saw the beautiful horse farms. I don’t think I’ve ever seen quite so many shades of green in one spot as I have in Kentucky. Enjoy the rest of your trip.

  3. What was I thinking?! First off, I hope Eric isn’t irritated that all the world knows of his gigantic feet. Secondly, I now am held accountable and must actually follow through with the knitting of socks for said gigantic feet. What a way to jump into knitting my first pair of socks! Eeek. I’m a bit nervous.

  4. I enjoyed all of your books and hope you are realizing just how popular you are…knitters will eventuaslly take over the world.

  5. Hi Stephanie – I think you can let the “what if no one shows up” worry be a thing of the past. (No matter what kinds of looks other authors give you, the Knitting Humorist). You’ve shown yourself to be a bonafide draw, and we knitters have shown ourselves to be Yarn Harlot loyal. We’ll never leave you high and dry at an event – fear not.

  6. Stephanie,
    I thoroughly enjoyed meeting you @ Threaded Bliss. I found Emma’s blog and a picture of her too huge sweater. Thanks for that little tip!
    Betty

  7. Stephanie,
    I thoroughly enjoyed meeting you @ Threaded Bliss. I found Emma’s blog and a picture of her too huge sweater. Thanks for that little tip!
    Betty

  8. I love the comment about the guy adding a knitter to his next book. Do you remember his name? I’ll make sure to get it when it comes out, and let him know that it was the knitting character who did it.
    Ol’ Jane is a hot topic around some. My father feels the same way those vets you met felt, and I grew up with that firmly planted in my brain. I believe she has since offered an “apology”. I still won’t watch her movies or support her in any way.
    Oh, boy, I hope Tisra has some serious fortitude when it comes to stockinette in the round. Either that, or lots of chocolate and beer.

  9. I have a man with size 14 feet, too. And he loves handknit socks, more than anything else I could make him. Sigh.
    That glass wool-pig is just adorable!

  10. Wow! A blog post to keep me going all day long – I can read it in stages and get periodic Harlot fixes throughout the day.

  11. Hey Stephanie! Mark’s been interviewed for a one-year job at the University of Kentucky, in Lexington — I’m glad to know there’s a good knitting community there. I’d be glad to hear of your impressions (brief though they are, I’m sure) both good and bad, of the city. After all, if we were to get the job and go, my baby would be born there!

  12. Steph–You’ve gone on yet another trip to an area that I would love to see. DH and I are finally taking some short vacations and that area is within one driving day.
    Sounds like you had a great time and completely took over the book fair!

  13. I’m very impressed with your amazing memory. I didn’t even notice you writing anything down this time. Very impressed. And 29 pictures and 20 links is a feat for anyone. Go have a glass of wine. Thanks for remembering all of us!
    P.S. My friend with the long dark hair? That’s Joy. My friend with the short light brown hair knitting the entrelac bag? That’s Kimmie. I was being too selfish to introduce them on Saturday. Shame on me.

  14. Steph, it sounds like you are having a grand adventure! I wrote you a lenghty emotional email about a month ago and was wondering if the email demons ate it? It’s not like you to ignore something of that level without at least saying something like, “Thanks for sharing”. I understand that you are terribly busy, but well… it has left a lot of questions in my mind about what fame does to a person and how you might lose genuine connections with people. This topic been on my mind a lot lately, because I have been avidly avoiding fame for the past year. It seems to be constantly haunting me. Good luck on the book tour. The lastest book is my favorite out of all the ones you have published thus far. Sadly, I will never have mine signed, because I am disconnected, living out in the middle of nowhere.

  15. ooh, bourbon balls. That is something that should be saved for a finishing session, or weaving in ends or seaming. Powerful stuff (and powerfully addictive)! I was so excited you went to Lex as my friend Stacy met you (my proxy http://stacyknits.blogspot.com/) and now I felt like I was there. Thanks for all the marvelous photos.

  16. It was so great to actually meet you!! I’m glad you liked the piggy – I thought he was pretty cute, but you know how biased a mom can be about her babies. If you should feel the urge for a flock, let me know. I spent the rest of my time in Lexington wearing a foolish grin and mumbling things like “She shook my hand….wow, she’s really funny…straight or circular, hahahahah”. Husband was rather perplexed at times but he could tell I was happy, so he just let me be. Of course, since meeting you all I want to do is knit, which is a problem when trying to pack up to move to Germany in a few weeks! Do you suppose you could get the wonder publicist to schedule a european leg of the book tour? You’d have free bed and board – and there’s a LOT of sock yarn over there….Just sayin’!

  17. Marvelous fun, but OMG, now -I- need a nap! It started at the picture of the size 14 foot. ; ) Love the linky, picture-filled posts — looking forward to seeing what you’ve been working on.

  18. Whew! All 29 pictures and 20 links later, (I had to check ’em all – it’s the polite thing to do, and I am Canadian…) all I can say, it whatta trip!
    Thanks for sharing.

  19. I’m glad you had a lovely trip to LexVegas! I was the itty bitty crazed “can’t go knit because I have to go to Louisville to meet a hot fireman” person. What a fool! (not for meeting a hot fireman but for announcing that to the entire line of knitters) I was starstruck, I guess. I saw Jane Fonda guy driving around town the other day with his signs on his truck, not realizing she was going to be at the book fair, and thinking “how random.”

  20. Clever, Harlot — but not clever enough. All those pictures, all those stories, just to distract us so we’d forget to go back and check Sandra D’s blog
    http://www.k-or-k.blogspot.com/
    for first-glance proof positive that you not only forgot your pants but got a Brazilian to boot. Oh my.

  21. . . . and I thought I had it bad with a sweetie whose feet are a size 13! Thanks for the bit of perspective.

  22. And Ialauxh — interesting that you’re willing to drop tiny guilt-bombs here while not permitting comments on your own site. Bad form.

  23. Knitting?!? No way did you have time for knitting with all that going on! If you have even one FO in tomorrow’s post…I may give up knitting entirely.
    OK, wait-I’ll be really, really freaked out-how about that? Demoralized, even. Whew! That’s better.

  24. My Dad has size 12 feet, and I’ve made socks for him….
    worsted weight wool, my friends. Boot socks. I’ve made
    them in sock weight wool and thought my brain would fall out.
    I hope they managed to rope you in for a Derby party
    or 3. Not much beats a little burgoo, Derby pie
    and a mint julep. After a few properly made juleps,
    you may forget your vegetarian ways and actually
    EAT the burgoo. 😎 At least the julep is drinkable,
    which is more than you can say for a black-eyed susan.

  25. If any post of yours inexplicably fails to crack me up, I can rely on Franklin’s comment to do it. I thought size 10 1/2WW feet were bad.
    You know by now that there are Knitters, and there are knitters, and there are Muggles. Just because not all of us practice our craft in public does not mean we can’t take over the world. I too want the book with the knitter in it. Or maybe I should write one.

  26. What a great post! I am hoping that the Knitters Taking Over the World movement picks up speed soon, or at least the US portion of it — we need a little ousting down in the DC area… (g)
    Glad you got all educated about KY, too! πŸ™‚

  27. Love, love, love the wool pig!
    And about those size 14s… my 17 year old son wears a 14EEEE and he’s STILL GROWING!!! That poor boy will never experience the joy that is a hand-knit sock. Tisra is a braver woman than I for even considering it.

  28. Dude! You drove by the town that birthed my hubby – Bowling Green, Kentucky Baby. I get “Bless Your Hearted” all day long. Fer real.

  29. Stephanie, you are such a delight! I’m always learning things reading your blog. Such a great geography and history lesson, almost feels like I’m touring the country with you. Keep living it up! And I loved the long post!

  30. Welcome back home! Now please grab your sock and get yourself down here for MDSW next weekend! The folks around the national capital are itching to see you soon!

  31. Socks for guys with big feet . . . have to add that I was recently knitting my 2nd pair of socks — some “footies” intended for my 15-y-o daughter. She announced (as only a teen can) that she didn’t care for the “Cascade Fixation” I was using, a variegated lime green/hot pink/ white. But, 17-y-o son with size 13 feet announced — I’d love them! I’m glad it was the first sock so I didn’t have to do any ripping. He does love them, judging by the trouble I have getting him to put them in the laundry (whew!). Tisla, I recommend convincing your man that all the cool guys are wearing footies. Even for size 13’s, that was a lot of stockinette in the round! Worth it, though. Imagine a teenage boy who isn’t considered dorky by his peers and loves his mom’s handknit pink & green footies. Boggles, doesn’t it?

  32. Sounds like some serious fun was had. I think you are really getting good at documenting all your experiences. Glad you are taking the time to share it all with us-I know you are short on it!
    Rams-that just cracks me up. I had to look twice.
    Brazilian. You have arrived!

  33. Thank you for making your way to Tennessee. Bruce (he’s my husband, I’m sorry I neglected to introduce him) and I had such a wonderful time. It was an experience I’ll remember always. Maybe your tour (or the next) will make it to Alabama. I might be less nervous (and sweaty) next time, but we won’t be holding our breath on that one.

  34. I read the whole thing, but my comment comes from the very beginning; and, its really a question. Do we have to wait until evening to read this with a beer or if it’s evening in Paris is that close enough?
    Looking forward to your Minneapolis tour dates!

  35. I think you’re right, knitters are taking over the world. I love the glass wool pig! And, I think you deserve a medal for endurance blogging or something! That many pictures and links is amazing! Must feel good to be home.

  36. Hi,
    After seeing the traceout of the foot for the size 14 bf feet – I just had to shout out that I have a little brother (well, not so little, but he is only 19) who actually wears a size FIFTEEN shoe. He is very cute about asking me to knit him socks, which he does almost every single time I see him. Man – his shoes are too big for my little house, and he wants me to knit him socks!?!?! Poor guy, the non-comprehension of my very valid argument that it would take me forevvveeerrrrr to knit socks for those feet of his is a bit sweet…
    Good luck on the rest of your tour.
    The Mason Dixon knitters have invaded over at my blog if you want to take a look at my off-center log cabin, I’d be thrilled (really!)
    Abi

  37. Aren’t you going to be at the maryland sheep and wool festival? You’re so close and it’s this weekend!

  38. It would have increased your already lengthy blog entry, but I loved the story of your potty break in rural Kentucky. Maybe that and “unholy drunk” will make it into a book one day.
    I really enjoyed meeting you in Lexington! Come to Cincinnati next time — we have a thriving fiber community here.
    Penny
    Penny

  39. It’s Tuesday. Go spin. BTW, you’re gansey adventure has inspired me to learn to process raw wool and last night, I finally got it right. πŸ™‚

  40. Hey, it just ocurred to me that when knitters take over the world we can have all nonknitters do the laundry and scrub the toilets.

  41. Just in case anyone asks. The Tesselated fish pattern is an old Knitters pattern, I think from Summer 98 (all kids issue). I’ve made a new pattern (on the blog) that is similar, but less detailed. Takes about 2 hours to make 1 fish in my pattern.
    I really like her color layout!
    April

  42. Geesh, lady. You surely do pack a house, don’t you?
    I note Portland is on the “maybe” tour list. My husband already thinks I’m mental – if I tell him I’m driving up from the Sacramento area to Portland because the Harlot is going to be at a yarn store there, he will definitely think I’ve flipped.
    He’ll probably say, “Don’t be insane! You don’t want to DRIVE to Portland! Take Amtrak. You’d get what, ten hours of knitting in that way.” And I’ll get a three or four day weekend out of the deal.
    They CAN be trained, Spouses-of-Non-Knitters, they CAN be trained…

  43. You live a charmed life, to be sure. As for the size 14 feet, at least the man has two feet and all of his toes! And more power to him if he will wear the socks. My husband refuses to wear the socks I made for him–he’s off my list of people for whom I will knit.

  44. Oh, Stephanie – I can’t believe your tour practically surrounded me (St. Louis, Nashville, Lexington & Louisville)and I never had the opportunity to see you. Please, please come back to Kentucky (or somewhere else close)soon and give me another chance.
    P.S. Kentucky and Tennessee are always nice places to visit, once you get the hang of the language.

  45. One question- oh great and wonderful Harlot…..I’m curious…. is the blue sock thing a luck thing???
    Seems like ALL your sock knitting ( on the road) is done in similar colors….. or are you really a FAUX knitter? Just carrying around the same sock… but never really knitting it? Scandalous.
    Or, perhaps- more fitting… have you found some magical never ending sock yarn… that continues on forever??????
    just curious— keep knitting- ts;)

  46. Wow! That post must have taken some time to upload!! I love looking at pictures and cyber-meeting people I’ll probably never be able to real-life meet. Makes me feel like I’ve taken a mini-vacation. Thanks for the memories!! πŸ˜‰

  47. Very glad I was able to be of help. The Hoppin’ John turned out to be pretty good too. πŸ™‚

  48. Stephanie, if you ever do come through Paducah just let me know and I can give you a grand tour. With Ewe in Mind is awesome, thanks to the really cool new owners, but we also have The Guild which has all kinds of cool stuff and those ladies are nice too. I might be learning how to spin this summer from them. πŸ™‚ I’m glad you had fun in Ky, but do remember to travel one day to the western part of the state.

  49. Thanks so much for coming to Threaded Bliss! I really enjoyed meeting you, and you’re so funny! The Olympic sweater was a beautiful sight to behold.

  50. I may have missed it, but is a “whack of knitters” the official designation? Like a pod of whales or a nest of mice? Inquiring minds want to know!
    The same inquiring mind wants to know if you’re going to grace D.C. with a visit on this tour. πŸ˜‰

  51. Well if you are intimidated by all the knitters, just imagine how poor Jane was. No wonder she ran for the hills. But she was probably still spooked by all the VETs laying in wait for her.
    Now we all know you have been knitting. And really, we would never think you were taking the exact same sock to all your functions. We would never think you were just dying the same one over and over.
    Really we wouldn’t.
    πŸ˜‰

  52. Oh, this post came at just the right time: my lunch break.
    And I hope you realize, long post writer, that you’ve now set a precedent. We know you’re capable of the long, link- and photo-filled posts, so we’ll be watching for more and more and more of them…it’s only fair. You started it!
    –Judy

  53. I may have lost my mind, but I know previously on your “tour” page it listed dates in May. Currently, it only lists dates in April. I think you are planning to come to Michigan this weekend & I would love to come see you, if I had the info. Thanks!

  54. If you want more information about what is being done for the Invisible Children in Canada check out http://www.guluwalk.com .
    Its so great when my interests collide.. we just talked about this today in my histroy class. I watched Invisible Children yesterday while knitting a lace sock.

  55. Fabulous post. Thanks for sharing all of the pics and links. You keep packing them in and scaring the wits out of event organizers when they see all of those smiling people with pointed little sticks!

  56. Good Lord… you know what they say about big feet!!
    Are you sure she isn’t married to Sasquatch??

  57. …and if the Bigfooted wanted to be gifted with felted slippers… πŸ˜‰

  58. I’m so glad that you were able to see so much of Lexington. I think that it’s one of the nicest places I’ve ever lived.
    I’m really excited that you linked to my blog! How exciting!
    Good luck and good travels on the rest of your tour!

  59. I want a wool-pig! I mean, I want a glass one. I already have a real one in my DH.
    Can’t wait until you come to TX. I am saving up malt vinegar packets for you.

  60. My mouth just fell open at that fish blanket. WOW.
    Congrats on this latest leg of the tour… I loved every last picture!

  61. Between Rams’ first glance Brazilian and Penny’s ‘potty break’ story, I, I… Well. I really just don’t know what this blog is coming to. *repressed, morally outraged sniff*
    If you bring some bourbon balls to share and the gorgeous wool pig to show at the SnB tomorrow night, I’m sure I’ll be able to get over (myself) it. :o)

  62. I can sympathize with the lady with the size 14s to knit for. My oldest son wears a size 18 shoe and the only way for him to get socks that fit is for me to make them. Luckily he’ll wear just about any color or self-striping yarn (just not pink, Mom). He’s a good boy, and luckily finished growing. BTW, I did some stitch calculations and a pair of socks for has as many stitches as the average worsted sweater. At least he can’t say I don’t love him.
    I hope you’re going to be in Maryland this weekend. I looked at the tour list, but it didn’t say anything past April. Keeping my fingers crossed.
    Deb in PA

  63. Hey, what’s wrong with the tessellating fish? I have about 2-3 more to go, then I have enough to make an afghan for my ex-college-boyfriend’s 2nd baby…Mine are in Kool Kids discontinued yarn, in black, white, red, royal and lt blue…it’s really fun! Each fish takes an hour or so, and the shaping is just interesting enough to keep you going! Thepatter was in the kids issue of Knitters back when I was pregnant with my 4th child…actually, when I was nesting and LATE with my 4th baby ;-)…so that would be almost 8 years ago.

  64. Yes, come to DC! Or northern VA, or even Maryland. Because this is just not fair–you’ve now been to Pittsburgh, where I used to live, Boston, where my (non-knitting) sister lives, and Lexington, where we seriously considered moving. (Lovely town! Reminded me a lot of my hometown.) πŸ™‚ Just don’t tell me you’re going to be in Lawrence, Kansas, or near Charlotte, NC, next (other places I have lived). They do both have yarn shops, though, or used to.
    The wool-pig is great! How funny! Hope you get to rest a little sometime soon!

  65. Don’t worry about the blurry pic. Katie was excited to see she made the internet blurry or not. We enjoyed meeting you…come to Cincinnati some time so we don’t have to drive so far!

  66. Looking forward to seeing photos of your recent knitting. Can you post photos of your recent stash acquisitions from the book tour (yarn crawl) too? That fish blanket was crazy. Imagine it with self-striping sock wool leftovers!!

  67. Wow you really get around! It looks tiring but must be a whole lot of fun too. I’m really digging the fish blanket!

  68. Pix. Links. Horsey talk. ‘Real’ authors confounded. Stunned book organizers. More pix. More links. Whacks of knitters. Finally, an excuse to use an expression I’ve always wanted to use: It was great crack reading it all! (thank you, Nuala Anne and Andrew Greeley.) Lovely, Stephanie – now for ghu’s sake, breathe!

  69. A whack? Really? Because we’re all a little whacko? Or because, on occasion, we may whack someone out of our way to get closer to the yarn/roving?
    Size 14? Goodness. Must ask my beloved what size shoe he wears. Good thing he loves scarves and hats.
    I love your long posts. I got a lot of knitting done while reading it and the comments. Thank you.

  70. Size 14 feet. . . . . My hubby has em too! If you ever encounter this again, you can pass along my hard-won wisodom in this area. . . . . .KNIT SWEATERS FOR THE MAN!!!! I’m certain it’s less work and I just cried the first time he ripped a hole in a pair.
    PS: Please come to Wisconsin, Please come to Wisconsin (I have no shame and am not above begging)

  71. Wow… like many others, that size 14 shoe has me hyperventilating… you must admit, knitting a sock for that is TRULY love… (I myself would cop out and use sport-weight yarn, at the very least…) Okay, Steph–you keep posting these awesome book tour (yarn crawl) blogs, and somehow my daughter and I will manage to make it to Berkeley in August… (I hate Berkeley–it reminds me of that town caught at the nexus of the two dimensions in that Stephen King book… but I understand that a lot of people love it, and if you’re there, you will certainly add some good mojo to the place!!!) I may even bring the wee one… not necessarily because I think she’ll be welcome at a book signing but because the compact ball of pudge is eating like a champion and I don’t have any time to, uhm, ‘fix’ her a take-out dinner for dad to administer… I’m babbling. Keep posting travel blogs, dear…I love them all.

  72. Thanks for the brightness at the end of a long day at work. Glad I decided to stop by because I needed the laughs. πŸ™‚

  73. Rams rocks.
    Hey, for the mom with the son with size 18 feet: for heaven’s sake, teach the boy to knit! Like that old saying, if you give a boy some socks, he will have warm feet for a day, if you teach him to knit, he’ll have warm feet for life.

  74. Hi!
    I just discovered you a few weeks ago and I’m now leaving my first comment here. I’ve been a blogger for a number of years (www.sunidesus.net) and have knitted in the past, but nothing more complicated than a garter stich scarf. A few months ago I got inspired and started trying new things. I am now obsessed. (My knitty blog is at knit.sunidesus.net) I have 4 UFO’s on needles and have plans to cast on two more when I get home from work tonight. (or maybe sooner, we’ll see)
    Reading about the travels of your sock has inspired me. I bought my first two skeins of sock yarn today.
    I’m thoroughly enjoying this whole new group of bloggers and figured it was high time I said hello!

  75. Wonderful posting Stephanie, love all the pictures and links too. That wooly pig is just the thing for us yarnaholics and are real keepsakes –love them . Also really like the fish blanket. My nephew is a fishing nut and I can never think of something to knit for him but this ( drive you crazy putting it together) blanket would be his cuppa tea for sure. I’ll have to try and find the pattern. Rest up and enjoy being home for a bit. Sounds like the knitters are having a blast at your appearances.Laughter is the best medicine known and you certainly supply us with our daiy dose. THANK you so much fo just being YOU

  76. Wonderful posting Stephanie, love all the pictures and links too. That wooly pig is just the thing for us yarnaholics and are real keepsakes –love them . Also really like the fish blanket. My nephew is a fishing nut and I can never think of something to knit for him but this ( drive you crazy putting it together) blanket would be his cuppa tea for sure. I’ll have to try and find the pattern. Rest up and enjoy being home for a bit. Sounds like the knitters are having a blast at your appearances.Laughter is the best medicine known and you certainly supply us with our daiy dose. THANK you so much fo just being YOU

  77. Wonderful posting Stephanie, love all the pictures and links too. That wooly pig is just the thing for us yarnaholics and are real keepsakes –love them . Also really like the fish blanket. My nephew is a fishing nut and I can never think of something to knit for him but this ( drive you crazy putting it together) blanket would be his cuppa tea for sure. I’ll have to try and find the pattern. Rest up and enjoy being home for a bit. Sounds like the knitters are having a blast at your appearances.Laughter is the best medicine known and you certainly supply us with our daiy dose. THANK you so much fo just being YOU

  78. I love all of the pictures and the links! Once again, I cannot wait until you visit us in DFW. I’m bringing every knitter I know. Awesome post!

  79. I’m glad you had a well-informed driver to show you the most important sights of Kentucky and I am especially proud of the sock for posing with the Jane Fonda protesters.
    Hope you enjoyed the bourbon chocolates or found someone who did. We had a blast taking over the book fair and scaring the book people.

  80. Thanks for sharing your trip tales and photos with us all. Also, I’m loving all the yarn shop information and just wishing I could visit all of them. πŸ™‚
    Happy Knitting!

  81. What a wonderful time you are having! Enjoy, enjoy! As for the large-footed, DH had normal sized feet (size 9), however, both sons have size 13. I suppose I can’t complain. The genetic apple didn’t fall far, I wear a size 12 wide! Who gets the most socks? Why, I do!

  82. Yes Rams,the first glance was questionable. My eyebrows got a work out.Actually it was the Brazilian that got them calmed down again. Reality, you see. Sally T? Muggles do NOT do toilets!!

  83. Thank you, thank you, thank you, for posing with me for a picture not once, but 3 times because my friend’s hand was shaking too hard to hold the camera still! You definitely ruled at the book fair.
    PS I want a yarn pig too!!

  84. Whew- I may have to go to bed after all that (and I haven’t even done the links yet, saving that for tomorrow- dial-up, y’know). I must add to all the people wondering about MD- are ya coming?????????

  85. Long, but GREAT blog entry, Steph. Oh for your adventures…..those book festival folks really didn’t know what they were in for, did they??
    Tisra, socks for size 14 male feet aren’t all that daunting, but you will need an extra skein of yarn (and extra patience). My oldest son has the big ones, and he loves his handknit socks (and gloves, and hats). Just keep knitting Tisra!
    I love the tessellating fish, but they do make me a bit dizzy. I have seen quilts done like that, but never knitting. Seeing it, is pretty, but I want to TOUCH!!
    And you just had to show Brooke’s designs, didn’t you? I quickly clicked off the hat before one of my boys began to beg me for it. But the Reid sweater! Oooh! I couldn’t resist. Hit the print button. Now I need to find a pretty little girl to wear it. Why did I have all boys?? They don’t knit. They don’t wear frilly lacy sweaters, and none of them are babies any more. Heck! They were hardly baby-sized when they were born! I grow ’em super-sized from the get-go. How do you think #1 son got size 14 feet?
    Great post. But now Steph, pick up your knitting and take a rest. You’ve earned it with this one.

  86. Spaz moment of the day: the Harlot acknowledges the existence of my specific yarn fixation… Handpainted Opal Sock Yarn…
    I want it. I need it. I’m waxing poetical about it instead of filling out job applications… it’s Handpainted Opal Sock Yarn!
    It must be capitalized! It must be written out in full each and every time I mention it! It must be mine!
    …Okay, I’m done. There was other stuff in your post… it was a nice post… yaarrrnnnn…

  87. Mmmmm… bourbon balls… *drool*
    Oh, sorry, was I writing a comment?
    Mmmmm… handpainted Opal… *slurp*
    Oops! Please forgive me, but you have written about so many yummy and distracting things that I seem unable to write a coherent sentence.
    Thanks for the link to Invisible Children, by the way. I want to find out if they have any job openings.

  88. Lol at your comments about size-of-feet in potential beloveds. I’m reminded that one of my high school friends had a grandma who said that it was just as easy to fall in love with a rich man as a poor one…..
    My own DH has rather small feet for someone who is 6’4″, but given the rate at which he goes through socks (big feet usually go with a bigger person, who puts more weight on every step), and the likelihood that he would really find handknit ones superior to his usual ones (and his habit of wearing them around the house), I think he’ll have to get by with other expressions of my devotion.

  89. bourbon balls… yummm. are they from rebecca ruth? those are the best ones. i’m so sad i missed you in kentucky; i just moved from louisville to michigan. i hope you enjoyed your time in the bluegrass state! πŸ™‚

  90. That fish blanket is awesome. And, if you scroll it up and down on your computer screen, it kinda gets all wavy. V. cool.

  91. thanks – I needed that… from the suggestion to grab a glass of something (red wine) to the protesting vets holding the sock (crazy), to all the lovely links to go through tomorrow… Today I have been smacked by a Teva Durham pattern which I foolishly thought I could “improve” on… gotta go frog 1/2 a scarf πŸ™

  92. I wear a size 13 shoe, but I’ll be knitting my own socks – just bought me some Jawoll yesterday(plain old navy, as they didn’t have two skeins of the marled red & black that I really wanted) .
    Sad that poor Jane still gets such a hard time. She’s admitted to being young, stupid and unaware of what she was getting herself into, and has publicly apologized several times, but she still gets harassed, and even spat upon, according to one interview I heard. I don’t think she’s ever done anything to piss off knitters that would have security whisking her away, though.

  93. Will you be coming to England at all??? All your sock going ons have made me start knitting a sock as well, the one everyone seems to be doing from the Nancy Bush Folk Sock book… I love reading your stories of adventure as well! πŸ™‚

  94. I’m glad my friend Janis got to meet you while you were here, even if I couldn’t, and thanks for the photos too. The Castle burned to the ground a couple of years ago, all but the outer walls, and I’m glad to see they’re finally rebuilding it. Don’t recognize the lunch spot with the red awning offhand though the corner’s familiar – that’s the courthouse behind it, and the public library in the rounded building on the right. (Gonna have to check it out once I’m on day shift.)
    Glad to hear a new yarn shop’s coming soon! I found out a couple of months ago there was one just a few blocks from my house – and they went out of business a few weeks after that.
    Too bad I’m at work, I could really use a few of those bourbon balls…

  95. This is not entirely on the topic, but I just wanted to rejoice in having finally found one of your books today!
    I’ve been hunting them out for ages, and at last I had success in Borders. I am now the happy owner of a copy of The Secret Life of a Knitter, and I am enjoying it immensely. Now I just need to find the other books.

  96. Oh, Lord, be careful of the Bourbon balls. Us, Southerners are sneaky with them. We give them to innoccent ones, such as yourself then laugh ourselves silly when you end up drunk doing stupid things. It’s entertainment for us.

  97. About the horse thing – did anyone tell you about the collection technique for artificial insemination? LOL – you may not want to know.

  98. MUST have the pattern for the fish blanket. Even went through my stash last night and LORDY do I have enough wool for those fish or what !!! I’m computer illiterate and have tried hunting it down with no luck. I’m lucky I can find my way in here to ask someone to help me find it.IF by any chance you have it Stephanie would you send it to me WHENEVER you get the time .I realize tht you have bigger fish on the line right now so don’t worry about this at all.

  99. Steph,
    Your blog is a treat to read, and I had to comment since you spoke so glowingly of Lexington, my previous hometown. (I have a recipe for terrific Bourbon Balls, should you need it) My former favorite yarn store is there, but it’s about 4 or 5 miles from where you were. The Stitch Niche always had great yarn, and really friendly staff. I felt like I was back in Lexington again, it’s really a great little city. Please, please, please come to Florida. I’d be thrilled if I only had to drive 85 miles to see you. (The distance from either Cinci or Louisville to Lex.)And we’ve got a couple of “whacks” of knitters who’d love to see you and the sock.

  100. That looks like a great whack of fun (and a great whack of knitters having fun). For my money, though, the photo which makes the entry is the one of the three Vietnam vets holding the sock. Just too cool. And the Vietnam-era peace activist photo after it? Equally brilliant. (Vietnam War lit and culture was a big part of my undergrad years — it just gets in the heart and stays there.) You do this blogging thing very, very well, do you know that?

  101. Stephanie- “taking care of you” was the wonder. We, and all of Lexington love you.

  102. Great pics! I wish you would do a podcast! You’d be wonderful!

  103. I am STUNNED! I live in South Africa, and sometimes feel that I am at the very bottom of the knitterly food chain, and I KNOW about handpainted Opal and actually own several skeins of it. I’m even knitting a pair of Jaywalkers in it. You can go to my blog and see photographic proof if you like (both of the socks and the skeins).
    Also, and this is SO off topic, I bought your 3 books for myself as a birthday present (it’s TODAY – Happy Birthday to ME) and that book by Fiona with all the cable patterns. Now I just need time to knit and read.

  104. Just wondering when we get to find out how much money has been raised for MSF by selling the TSF pins…

  105. THANK YOU Stephanie and THANK YOU too April.I’ve just spent most of the morning lining up the colors and pondering them. I really don’t think its the feel of the wool that makes me buy so much —its the colours !! Thanks again, maybe now I’ve found something that will suck SOME of the life out of this stash !!

  106. Great post! Don’t worry a bit about its being long – so what?! I was excited to see a picture of my pal Leah on there, though she may have to change her blog again now that her name is out (psycho ex).
    PLEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAASE come to the San Francisco area. Please!

  107. Fish blankey! Wow, that IS a nice one! I’m making that too, just very slowly and my colors won’t be tht organized. I did find an issue of that Knitters on ebay about a year ago, so it’s out there. It’s all kids’ patterns and very popular, so you will pay a bit for it.

  108. If your blog took two days to read . . . I would. No problem. You always make me smile!!!! Thanks!

  109. Steph,
    prior to your book tour,I had checked your schedule and you were to be in San Diego and L.A. sometime in the summer (2006). Has that changed?? I had planned to come see you in L.A. and would still love to, but need to know when——-or is it too soon to be scheduled??
    Claudia Grace

  110. Sorry Tisra…. I feel your pain. My husband has a size 17 and is 6’6″. I knit a pair of socks for him that came over his knee. Crazy hu?. I didn’t think that they would ever end. LOL
    Good luck.

  111. When I saw that you were in Lexington, I almost called my mother-in-law to send her over to see you and get a book signed for me. Unfortunately, it was already 4pm there, so the signing was over. She is also an author, and while she doesn’t knit, she appreciates knitting enough that I’m going to knit her a lace shawl for Christmas. (It is important to make sure the recipient will appreciate the gift appropriately.)
    How I wish you were coming to Houston. Can we petition the wonder publicist to get you here? Do I need a yarn shop to sponsor it? Heck, could a podcaster sponsor it? Houston needs the Harlot!

  112. Gaa! I wish that I had known you were going to be in Lexington. That’s where I live. I didn’t find out until a couple of days after you were here. Glad to hear that you enjoyed my town, though!

  113. Although I haven’t done any knitting since 3 Aran sweaters gave me tennis elbows, your hilarious book inspired me to drive several miles to what is apparently our only local yarn shop. I arrived to find a sale in progress and violent, elbowing women filling every ransacked aisle. I went there for a sock pattern and emerged almost unscathed bearing a one dollar skipping rope (I ask you!) a jumbo sized crochet hook and a pattern book for babies who don’t mind drafty arms. Stunned of San Diego

  114. Hey, I wear size 12 shoes, too! You should definitely check out Dreamshoes http://www.shoesofyourdreams.com. They have wide widths, too, in shoes you would actually like to wear! I’m telling all my big-footed sisters about this place.

  115. “This poor knitter has a husband with size 14 feet.”
    What, are you kidding me?
    I’m thinkin’: Lucky girl!!!!
    Ya know what I mean? (I know that you do.)
    ; )

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