Squeaky cheese and socks

Seriously, I think I may have overshot. To get everything ready for the Knitty Gritty thing (I promise that when I know when it’s on, you’ll know when it’s on…I wouldn’t dream of all of you missing the opportunity to mock me severely) I need to knit….well. About a sock a day. I thought this was reasonable.

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Apparently my relationship with reality is loose, at best. I’m about a sock (and a day) behind. I have decided to not think about it (if by “not think about it” you understand that I am thinking about it all the time) …and distract myself with tales of Montréal knitters.

After a stay in the best B&B in Ottawa (technically Manotick) with uncle Tupper and his charming paramour Susan…

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(Forgive the computer-cam shot. It was late and I couldn’t find my camera. The dog is Boogie. He’s like….the best dog ever.) Tupp drove me to the train and I rode along to Montréal where I was taken under the lovely wing of our dear Lee Ann.

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(Lee Ann seen here winding wool off her knees in a coffee shop. Camera still AWOL at that point and Lee Ann is really so beautiful that she looks that good with a crappy web cam.) We drank coffee – a skill that we both excel at, wound wool in the shop to freak out the natives and then trundled off to Radio Canada for a phone in thing.

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Yes, that is the sock strapped to the rear wiper of a Radio-Canada truck, and no, we did not feel that this was an odd thing to do in a parking lot. We stood there, in the warm beer scented steam of the Molson factory….

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and then we did the interview. Here’s Meredith Dellandrea from Radio Noon, and she did a bang up job of walking me through an hour long phone in show. Live. You just gotta know that was brave of her. Me, live…for an hour? Could have gone very wrong, but Meredith is a knitter, actually part of the Montreal Knits group, and she not only is working to make Radio-Canada Canada’s knitting station (all knitters all the time!) but she (and the Montréal Knitters) are also helping pull together a project for Dans La Rue (in the street) to bring blankets to street kids.

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They collected squares until Oct 31st, and now they are going to be sewing them up forever. From there we went back to Lee Ann’s for a lovely lunch (try and get Lee Ann to cook for you sometime. She’s really good at it and can be bribed with a pittance of fibre) and then hustled ourselves (along with her daughter, the charming Twinkletoes) down to the McGill Bookstore café for a talk and a signing put on in conjunction with the People’s Liberated Knitting Front. (Quite possibly the best name for a knitting group ever. Big thanks to El Comandante for helping me so much.) I was worried no-one would come because it’s an english language book.

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Apparently I’m ok. Dudes, the coolest knitters were there. Seriously. Before I was even done talking there was Jennifer.

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Do you see her socks? Do you? They’re bowling socks man! They’ve got bowling pins and a bowling ball on em! Do you see how they make my socks look stupid? They’re freakin’ awesome.

It’s Jae!

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Relocated to Montréal from my own beloved Lettuce Knit S&B. Babe, I thought I’d never see you again. (Sniff.)

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Barbara…showing signs of an entrelac outbreak in Montréal (must have spread from Kingston.)

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Patricia, who comes from the same town as me and went to the same High School as me. (Bramalea Secondary School in Brampton, Ontario.) Different years, I am sure.

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Kathy who came from Alaska (not just for the talk, because, you know, that would be creepy) but happened to be in the right city at the right time.

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Maria-Michele, who’s name proved to be an intelligence test for me. (I mangled her name and she still gave me that pretty yarn from her trip to Italy. I am not worthy.)

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Anny and her husband Stephen. Anny, we all know and love, but Stephen has his own claim to fame, being the cheerful and clever originator of that most threatening of Knitting Olympic gizmos….the countdown timer. Remember that? It started out friendly green, then turned a warning orange, then finally a ominous and looming red as the timer ticked down and you ran out of time, knitting until wee hours of the night while you wept? Good times.

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Kate, aka Miss Ewe, who drove from Kingston to see me, even though I had just been in Kingston two days before. (Don’t ask. It’s complicated.) She was as much fun as I had been hoping. It’s nice not to have to lie about her. Charming, funny…everything you’d hope for in a knitter.

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Kate Gilbert, designer extraordinaire…(Have you seen her stuff in the latest Interweave Knits? The Equestrian Blazer is So. Going. To. Be. Mine.) Kate captured my heart forever when we were at dinner in Rhinebeck and she and Juno were sharing something that had an ice cream and cider sauce. When the guy came to clear the plates, Kate noted that there was melted ice cream remaining, stopped him, picked up the cup and shot the melted ice cream like so much tequila. My kinda gal.

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The lovely Brainylady, another expat Ontarian….There was Deawn, Kadi, Mona, Witchy-knits, Molly Ann, The fabulous Nadine Fenton (Ok. She wasn’t there, but she really wanted to be so I’m mentioning her anyway. It’s my blog, I make the rules.) Sam la tricoteuse… so many. It was fantastique. I went for a beer with the Montréal knitters (plus a few random Ontario ones) and then retired to my hotel room where I remembered something I truly love about this place.

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Nice. The next morning I got up and planned to walk around the city, but it rained, and rained and rained. I ate bagels and cream cheese in my hotel room with fresh hot café.

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(A really big shout-out to whomever left the Montréal bagels at McGill for me. They were wonderful. I ate two and shared the rest when I got home. Thank you!) Thus fortified, I went out for a little on a mission to find what I really love about Montréal, squeaky cheese curds. I lasted about 15 minutes in the cold and the rain before retreating, heartbroken. I gathered my stuff, grabbed a taxi to the train station and comforted myself with my bagels. At the train station I sat, deeply regretting my painful dairy loss until I remembered that there is little chocolate can’t heal and headed for the dépanneur de la gare. It was there, among the chips and the chocolate, near the Pepsi and beside the milk that I saw them. Snuggled near smoked pepperoni, looking for all the world like they were waiting for me.

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One package.

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squeaky cheese curds at last. I ate them all. Je ne regrette rien.

À la prochaine Montréal. Je t’adore.

161 thoughts on “Squeaky cheese and socks

  1. I would wish to be your sock and travel with you on your adventures, but I’m pretty sure I’d miss out on the bagels and the beer. I’d even try the squeaky cheese, just to be game. (But no gravy.)

  2. I’m sorry — did you say you plan to knit one WHOLE SOCK each day?? Please share your strategy for warping the time-space continuum.

  3. That looks like an identical pair. Couldn’t it be just one sock of each pair? Surely you don’t need to have complete pairs to show off different stages or different heels or whatever it is.

  4. If you’re ever down in Wisconsin, check out the cheese curds there. There’s a place in Sturgeon Bay, if I can remember its name. Lovely.

  5. I’m first? I Can’t Be! And I have nothing to say! Oh, except — those socks are BRIGHT — remind me of one of those hats I knit for an insistant grandchild; you know, with three pointy tapered tops AND knit in a multi-color. It pooled, it striped, it haunted my dreams til it was off the needles and off my property.
    I think I last saw it tromped into some “mud” in the barnyard. I did not rescue it.
    LOVE reading your stuff!

  6. So what makes squeaky cheese curds squeak? I don’t think I have ever heard cheese squeak before.
    Are they tiny socks? Maybe you should knit a sock a day for midget children.

  7. I’m not sure, but I think that the words cheese and curds should never be used together. Looks good, sounds baaaaaad. Teeheehee

  8. oh drats! drats drats drats! here i am about oh, maybe 300m away from the mcgill bookstore! where was i on the weekend? alberta!?! where should i have been? the mcgill bookstore!
    sigh…
    sock-a-day, eh? i’m still trying to finish my first pair… hope i make it before christmas! good luck.

  9. You’ve got daughters who can knit, right? Make, I mean, ask, them make a sock or two. I used to have chores when I was a kid – I washed the dishes and did the laundry. My parents believed in child labor. I can have them call you and convince you of the benefits if you’d like.

  10. Ohh cheese curds. I’m with ya’ on those although I generally eat them in the way the universe intended- smothering french fries and drowned in gravy!
    Good luck on the socks, I have faith in you!

  11. Squeeky cheese curds in Montreal? I never would have thought!
    Being a native East Coaster (American) I had never heard of such a food until I moved to Wisconsin (the birthplace of the cheese curd, naturally), was seriously repulsed by the mere idea of “squeeky” cheese for the first half of a decade which I lived there. Then.. my husband convinced me to just TRY some. I did.. and I fell in love.
    After living in upstate NY for nearly 2 years, I just RECENTLY found a source for honest to goodness farm fresh, squeeky curds. Almost feels like home (except here they refridgerate them right away and IMO the best curds are FRESH, so fresh they’re still warm. Now THAT makes for a squeeky curd!)

  12. Had to de-lurk to defend the cheese curds. I haven’t been lucky enough to have squeaky ones, but the fried cheese curds you can get in Wisconsin are wonderful! And salty. You’ll need a beer also.

  13. Montreal really does have an awful lot going for it, doesn’t it? It’s a shame that cheese curds have such a short shelf-life, though. I often enlist Montreal-bound friends to bring bagels back for me, but you just can’t keep cheese curds for as long. Looks like you had a grand time in Montreal with all those glorious knitters!

  14. Squeaky cheese curds!!! I haven’t had those in.. counting.. at least 10 years. I so envy you right now. Just one more thing to add to the list of to-dos on my multi-city family voyage this summer, along with Coffee Crisp, sponge toffee and that maple spread stuff.

  15. Crappppp. Stop always making Canada look so perfect and good and friendly. I cannot afford to move to another country right now. Not fair not fair not fair.

  16. Here in Vermont we’ve got some seriously noteworthy cheese curds– VT Quality Dairy. Nice guy. Met him at the Farmers’ Market.
    Speaking of Vermont, are you ever going to come here? Lovely state. Plenty of sheep, fiber, and, erg, interesting people.

  17. Last time I was in Montreal I stayed about a block from that Molson factory in Old Port… Mmm the warm scent of beer…
    What are these “squeaky cheese curds” anyway? Well, what makes them squeak?

  18. Boy, talk about strange.. you live in the west end of TO and I grew up in Parkdale, you went to Bramalea and I went to Ching, you starting knitting at 4 and I started at 44 (last year!) I have seriously enjoyed your books and your blog. Am very much looking forward to new bookbookbook and am in total awe of a sock a day.. wow.

  19. Now that fact if I indulged, I’d instantly add 6-8 pounds by morning, and you indulge and still manage to maintain a slim physique, must mean that you knit alot more than I do AND knitting burns more calories than exercise. (it’s a nice thought anyway!) Thanks for continuing to keep me entertained! πŸ™‚

  20. Squeaky cheese curds?!?! They look kind of like string cheese…..but the name?!? I think I’m scared.
    I second the idea of having socks made by your children (and maybe husband? Can you make your husband knit?).
    So…. when are you coming to America?

  21. “Apparently my relationship with reality is loose, at best”
    Dude. You’re only just realizing this? After the year you’ve had?

  22. Mmmmmm cheese curds….I am going to say up front that I’m not a good Canadian since I haven’t been to Montreal yet, but there are very good squeaky curds to be found in Edmonton at the Cheese Factory (perfect just for eating and great for poutine). Now if anyone knows of a place in Vancouver to get proper squeaky curds, shout out! Since I moved I have to wait for trips back to Alberta to get them.

  23. Mmm… my aunt used to feed me cheese curds all the time. She called them ‘urchin food’. I don’t recall them squeaking, though.
    What is that in the bathroom? Is it what I think it is??

  24. Oh, I miss the old days when even the smallest of towns ’round here had a bar, a church, and a cheese factory. Little cheese factories were sprinkled throughout the countryside — you’d find them on the oddest of corners. THE BEST! It just isn’t the same to buy curds — no matter how fresh or squeaky — at a place where you can also buy gas and window washer fluid. Every now and then, they can still be found — fresh, squeaky and yet-unrefrigerated — in a place befitting to their yumminess. Thanks for the memory jog. ; )

  25. Hmmm, the beer I understand. But cheese curds, really? That just sounds wrong.
    And bidets? You Canadians are wonky πŸ˜›

  26. Its amazing what one learns from this site and not just about knitting!! Curds here are quite small, green pea sort of size and a bit mushy. Wouldn’t fancy eating them raw but mixed with butter, sugar, dried fruit and a splash of rum and put into pasty tart cases they are soooooo nice.
    I am still trying to get my head round the concept of a sock per day let alone actually trying to achieve it!! I was feeling just a little too smug for managing to knit a glove and a half in a week during my journey to/from work. Must admit to a certain joy and smugness over hearing half-whispered ‘Pssst, have you seen – she’s knitting gloves!’ comments from other people on the train. It is nice to be thought talented over something though.

  27. Sounds like Montreal was lovely and I’m glad you tracked down your cheese curds! I’ve only had them once and found them strangely addictive, once I stopped trying to identify what they reminded me of.

  28. A note on the cheese curds. We cannot really call that a delicacy : cheese curds are used in the famous “poutine”. French fries, cheese curds ladled with gravy (a strange mix of hot chicken sauce and your usual gravy). Now this is not for the faint at heart : meant in many ways. There is now an upscale, classy poutine cooked at “Le Pied de Cochon” a famous restaurant – http://www.restaurantaupieddecochon.ca/ – with foie gras (sorry for the vegans amongst us). He is a famous cook star and they came up with a book for Xmas.. in French only however.. the site is in both official languages – enjoy !!!

  29. Squeaky Cheese curds. . . . I’m telling you, you may have been a Wisconsinite in a past life! They are a true delight which the truly enlightened can appreciate and enjoy (they also go great with Leinies). he he he It probably won’t help but I’ve cast on the same sock six times in the past week. I may be calling in someone to dekharma the yarn.

  30. squeaky cheese curds!! I learned of those wonderful things from my wisconsin and western new york friends when I was in college in the midwest… I haven’t had any in almost ten years. and I’d almost forgotten about them. until now. sigh.

  31. Ah, MontreaL!! Le francais!! Montreal has urban and french charm, but WISCONSIN has fresh cheese curds all the time. All over the state. Every grocery store. And probably all the airports. But not the train stations. Anyway, come to Wisconsin and we’ll buy you fresh, still warm and squeaky cheese curds!

  32. It’s only the very freshest curds that squeak against your teeth like a certain kind of snow squeaks under your boots in the depths of winter. Us Canadians, we know sqeak! *grins*
    Sorry I missed your show on CBC radio (combining another two favorite things, CBC radio and fabric arts.) It was most likely highly entertaining and informative.
    Speaking of winter. We were, earlier; really. I got the coolest purple aluminum needles, some gorgeous autumn-coloured varigated chenille, and have begun to *knit* a seed-stitch scarf. I feel like I’ve conquered something huge. Thank you for the inspiration or subliminal messaging or drugs, whatever you did to get me here.

  33. Come back to Mountain View, California. There’s a dairy place here that sells those, fresh, or at least I think it’s the same thing. (Sorry I didn’t get you any in September!)

  34. Hey, we even have squeaky cheese down here!
    _I_have never indulged…but I have a friend who’s mad for them.

  35. I am afraid I can’t back you on squeaky cheese curds… I just had some for the first time in Wisconsin and I found them distressing. That said… a sock per day?! Um… wow. May all the gods of fast fingers bless you in your knitting!

  36. It was so lovely to see you. And I am SO getting cheese curds on my way home from school tonight! Glad you had bagels — must’ve been the bagel fairy.
    Good luck with your sock-knitting! (I think I could knit a sock a day, for … a day.)

  37. Oooh yeah .. I had to set up like 16 knitting looms at different stages of projects for my book..it was er.. interesting! The magic of television? eh?

  38. As a true California I had never even heard of Cheese curds much less eaten them (though I have been to Toronto/Quebec/MontrΓ©al).
    BUT your Wikipedia link explained all AND anything that has a POEM attached – though alas, not about knitting) is okay by me.
    Wikipidia – Cheese curds in song and poetry
    The New York times in 1911 reported on an ancient Celtic song, dating from the 12th century, that mentioned cheese curd, perhaps the first musical reference to the most musical of cheeses[3]:
    “Visions of MacGonlannee”
    Stately and pleasantly it sat
    A compact house and strong
    Then I went in
    The door of it was hung beef
    The threshold was dry bread
    And cheese curds were the walls…

  39. i know deawn! she splits her time between montreal and omaha, nebraska! isn’t she cool?
    also, she’s the reason why i sent a square for Dans La Rue. granted, mine was crocheted . . .
    did the sock get high on the warm beer fumes?

  40. I live on the Vermont/Quebec border and one great perk is the easy access to curd cheese. Especially in poutine. Those who don’t know tend to be horrified at the thought of eating french fries & curd cheese smothered in gravy, but what do they know???

  41. Ahh, squeaky cheese curds melted over french fries smothered in gravy. Mmmm.
    Montreal looks like so much fun. I hope they do allow English speaking people at the SnB. My Mr. might have to go on course in Montreal sometime in the summer.

  42. Dude, we’re converting the Muggles one at a time – at least in my family. My Shy Aunt in Ottawa, although she didn’t meet you, bought your book and is making socks. Then she was talking to her daughter in Montreal about you – Daughter had heard you on CBC and was inspired to start knitting again! And I got my Mom making socks – 3 down, multitudes to go…

  43. Cheese curds are yummy no denying that, but you forgot to address the cliffhanger from yesterday. How did the sock yarn end up in Sam’s sleeve?????

  44. Yum, cheese curds … must have cheese curds.
    All of you who are afraid to try them: don’t be. They’re heaven in a chunk o’ cheese (and that’s saying a lot, since I am also godless).

  45. I was curious, and so I followed the link. I wish I hadn’t. I did not know about squeeky cheese curds, and have no prospects of traveling near a cheese factory, and the link tells me there is no way of shipping them to me πŸ™

  46. Okay, I really must know what “squeaky cheese curds” are! Sounds kinda like cottage cheese, but looks way too huge to be anything like it…You eat it like regular cheese?…but it’s curds….? Is it sorta like string cheese? I feel intrigued, yet confused….please help me! πŸ™‚

  47. Oh, I forgot….That sock a day thing? Waaaay beyond my realm of reality! I’m still trying for a sock a MONTH! (rank sock amateur, but I’m not quitting…) Good luck with that—can’t wait to see your Knitty Gritty show!

  48. Are you counting the flight out here to L.A.? Because that’s 8 or 9 hours of pure uninterrupted knitting time (including waiting around in aiports). You could get a lot of sock knitting done then…
    Without sounding all stalker-y, my offer still stands for hair help, beer, yarn, great vegetarian food, free awesome hair product, more yarn…

  49. Cheese curds ARE sqeaky! I think it is because they are the first ‘solids’ that come out when you add rennet to the milk. Or something like that. Anyway, raw, hmmm, they are OK. But DEEP FRIED! They.are.to.die.for. All melty and salty…I love them at either the Wisconsin state fair or at the Minnesota state fair. SO GOOD!

  50. Come visit us in Minnesota, and I promise to bring you plenty of squeaky cheese curds.
    Really, there are lots of lovely yarn stores and knitters in Minnesota, and we want to see you!

  51. darn you, now I need some cheese curds (and I highly doubt any of the convenience stores near work have them. that would be a pleasant surprise though). had I known, I would have brought you some in Eau Claire. (can I bribe you to visit the Twin Cities with a promise for WI Cheese Curds?)
    so, besides Montreal, where can I find poutine? (now that I know what it is, I must try it)
    good luck with that sock-a-day plan. I agree with the others – child labor sounds like a good plan.

  52. Bagels! I wish I had thought of that. Of course, I’m somewhat aprehensive about going back to St-Viateur Bagel anytime soon- last time I was there was to order 12 dozen bagels (yep 12×12=144!!) to bring with me on my trip to my mom’s house (who now lives in the nether regions of Ontario, south of Hamilton near lake Erie). Some women pack just a suitcase full of fibre, I packed one full of bagels! Of course, it came home pretty stuffed full of yarn…

  53. My maternal family is from Wisconsin. Half from a long line of Swiss dairy farmers. Talk to me about cheese curds! Those commenters claiming fear of the squeaky cheese just. don’t. know. I love Montreal, next time I’m there, I’ll have to seek out Quebecois cheese curds!

  54. My husband went to McGill and became a bagel snob. We regularily get bagels from Montreal through mail order. They send a LOT. We’re looking for someone to split a shipment with….interested?

  55. Clearly, you need to go past Reno and all the way to the West Coast, because I know for a fact you can get squeaky cheese at the Tillamook Cheese plant in Tillamook, Oregon.
    — Lorrie

  56. I missed the part about WHY you need to knit a sock a day between now and the Knitty Gritty appearance. I’m guessing you need to show socks. Possibly even different kinds of socks. But you knit socks all.the.time. Aren’t there some in the LRPD box that could be pressed into service to prevent you from further crazies?
    Not that I have anything against your crazies, I’d just prefer they were saved for things like this year’s version of IT. So I can sit by the fire with a glass of wine of an evening chuckling at you. It’s not quite the right weather for that yet, so hold off, would you?

  57. Oooh, squeaky cheese….I’m sooooooo jealous! Lord knows we can get every other kind of cheese here – including several made especially for grilling (that still seems weird to me, but oh well), but no squeaky cheese. Bummer. Sounds like a great time was had by all. Oh, and when you figure out how to do the space/time warping on demand, let me know, please? I’ve some adjusting I’d like to do.

  58. Oh God Molson ! I had completely forgotten about it. I discovered Molson on my one and only trip to Vancouver 16 years ago …. it was fab. Right.I’m coming back. Call the airport (and the brewery).

  59. Oh I wish I’d known you like curds. There’s a cheese factory not far from me and we used to go to it once a week and get them fresh from the vat . Alas I only go once a year now on my birthday as the cholesterol bug has hit me, but I would have gotten you some . Oh well next time I’ll know better. AND -a sock a day !!! Holy crap where do you get the time ? Glad you had such a good time in Montreal and Ottawa . I think I’ll go to Ottawa next time you are there.

  60. Hey, I’m knitting for the Knitty Gritty too! Crazy! Except I don’t have to knit a sock AHAHAHAHAHA a BWAAAHAHAHAHA day AHAHA. Ha. Because that would just end in tears. So, good luck to you on that one! I know you can do it!
    Squeaky cheese sounds disturbing, yet, strangely compelling.

  61. All this talk of squeaky cheese — and darnit, I can’t try it, I’m allergic! *bites into Godiva chocolate bar to compensate*
    No comment on the sock-a-day thing. None. Cause I’m trying to finish way too many knitted gifts by the holidays, while squeezing in that other unimportant stuff — you know, work and sleep and eating.
    And, uh, Kate? I. Want. That. Shirt! Anyone know where I can get that ‘got gauge’ shirt? I’m seeing it everywhere, except in stores!!!

  62. squeaky cheese rocks!!! I know where to get them on my way up the Oregon coast on Hwy. 1 and on my way to Salt Lake City on Interstate 15. I have to plan my trips so I hit the cheese factories during store hours. Oh how I love my squeaky cheese!…but what the heck is poutine?!?!

  63. as a regular watcher of knitty gritty, i feel like you will be an awesome guest…sometimes i feel like the show lacks something, but not with you there!

  64. I think it’s really nice that you think Boogie is like the best dog ever–and I’m sure he’s really wonderful–but I just need to point out that you haven’t been lucky enough to meet Chappy . . . (grin)

  65. Those great “bowling pin” socks looks like one of Grace Ennis’ patterns. She was a wonderful lady and I have a lot of her stuff.
    You go girl! Can’t wait to see you on knitty gritty!!!!

  66. Squeaky cheese curds are the best and I load up every trip to Wisconsin. Looks like a marvelous Montreal.

  67. My brother and I live in Minnesota and had to drive to Chicago for a family function, which means driving straight through the heart of cheese country. We bought so many packages of squeaky cheese curds we had digestive problems for a week.
    It was so worth it.

  68. Hi Steph…I wanna point out how so you weren’t freakin’ about the phone in radio show..Do you remember almost a year ago when you practically broke out in hives thinking about a similar event??? My, my, my…what a person can get used to!
    And, if you’re worried about Knitty Gritty–think how nervous Vickie Howell must be to meet the famous YarnHarlot!!!!!!!!I bet she uses extra make up to cover the dark circles from the lack of sleep!!!!!!!!!

  69. I miss cheese curds so much. I’ve found some in Austin (TX), but they’re just not the same. Not fresh enough.
    They’re on my must find list when I go home to Montreal over the holidays. Yum!

  70. Looks like a truly great trip! I don’t know what you said at the end of your post, but it must have been something really good πŸ˜‰

  71. The Detroit airport has fried cheese curds. They’re almost as good and before I moved back to the midwest they were the reason that Detroit was my favorite airport for a layover.

  72. Dear Knitting Goddess,
    I truly do not know how I would survive my job without a semi-daily reading of your posts. Only a month to go and then, and then, I can spin and knit to my heart’s desire, and of course still read your blog but without the neediness factor. You’re a treat you are and I love the traveling sock.
    Are you coming to Nova Scotia anytime soon?

  73. I love me some squeeky cheese – we would always make a Fromage stop when we would go to the boys camp near Sherbroke. The cheese made my teeth itch (don’t ask) but damn was it good!!

  74. I am a scot and I live in france, so I have eaten a few things other people consider weird but I am seriously not getting the squeaky cheese curd love.
    My husband read the comments without reading the blog and asked “what was in the bathroom then?” I scrolled up and he saw the picture and said”its got knitting in it” and whats wrong with that?

  75. OHH!! I haven’t even read the rest of the entry (I’m about to go to a meeting), but I had to second the squeaky cheese!! πŸ™‚ I’ve never had it in Montreal, but I was born/raised in Wisconsin w/ a cheese factory about 30 minutes away. There is nothing better than some fresh, squeaky cheese. πŸ˜€ Everyone else looks at me like I”m insane when I tell them that, but they just don’t know what they’re missing. πŸ™‚

  76. Squeaky cheese and Montreal Bagels…you’re making me hungry! But no mention of Montreal Smoked Meat…
    And can I please join the club of knitters who are originally from Brampton?

  77. I eat cheese curds all summer in upstate NY-but the thought of deepfried ones makes me weak in the knees(not so much the fries & gravy though).
    Must find that bowling sock pattern. My husband was reading your post over my shoulder, and gasped audibly at the picture. “I totally want those”, he said. Never mind the socks I knitted lovingly out of cherry tree hill handpainted merino in a colorway that would make you weep….*sigh*…Have sent an email to Jennifer(thanks for the link!)—wish me luck!

  78. Your loose relationship with reality is the entire reason I like you so much.
    Okay, and you knit one hell of a shawl, too πŸ™‚

  79. “Your loose relationship with reality is the entire reason I like you so much.”
    Seconded! And I adore the term “paramour”…I must remember to use it more often.

  80. Squeaky cheese rules! My husband and I did a bike trip on the p’tit train du nord (north of Montreal) and we were told by a knowledgable man in our youth hostel that for “real” poutine “you must haf zee squeaky cheeze.” Yum!!!

  81. It’s not strictly charity knitting….but do you need assistance with the knitting? Is it something the rest of us can help with?

  82. clearly we need to have you back in montreal and change the venue to somewhere with cheese curds, poutine and bagels on the menu. what a laugh to see the photo of the sock and the cbc van (we call it the marty.) that very van transported me to the hospital when i was in labour and about to deliver my second child. my colleagues wanted me to name the child marty in its honour (i didn’t) now the marty’s been blessed by the sock!
    great to meet you in person. come back again soon!

  83. mmm squeeky cheese curds, there is no substitute for quebec cheese, it just isn’t the same in ontario. I remember going on a summer exchange in a small town in quebec, my prof asked us if we had ever gone on cheese tours as kids like she had. I didn’t understand why anyone would want to spend their vacation going to cheese-making places until I tried cheese curds. i ate way too many that trip! vive le fromage!

  84. I’m feeling the love on the bowling socks! What sucks is that I can’t show my husband “look- I’ve been blogged!” because they are a surprise for him. More photos of the socks (with closeups of the balls and pins) here:
    http://www.jeloca.com/2006/08/bowling-sock-progress.html
    The pattern is from Beehive Hand Knits FOR MEN, $0.35 back in the day. It doesn’t say the year, but its from Patons & Baldwins Limited, Toronto 10. I love the fact that in many of the images, the men are smoking or holding unlit cigarettes.
    Re: squeaky cheese: I remember some commenters were saying they couldn’t get it shipped? I’ll mail you some, if you like. I’m sure we could work something out…squeaky cheese for yarn…
    p.s. Try them the way my hubby eats them…with a fork, in a mug, melted in the microwave. Brings out the salty goodness.

  85. I skipped seeing you in Montreal to go to a Stitch and Bitch. I was told you’d be proud.
    Glad you found some cheese curds!

  86. More power to ya! I’m happy to get one sock in a month. Darned kids and housework. . . Can’t wait to see you on Knitty Gritty! I just recruited a friend to start taping it for me since I no longer get that channel (we decided that the full cable option was a bit opulant and we rarely used it, so we cut back).

  87. Sounds like a wonderful trip. Please don’t think I’m the dumbest person on the planet, but what is a cheese curd? Is it just a little ball of cheese?

  88. I just posted a meme about knitting and the people I’ve been lucky enough to meet over the past year and you and Kate are definitely up there with some of my most favorite peeps I’ve met. She’s good people huh? I was just looking at our pictures from when you were here the other day and I was laughing thinking of that weird woman who came up to us in the rain and wanted to meet us as we were taking pictures of the sock. And then you getting coffee in the comic book store. Too funny.

  89. I watch KG every day, if you want to prepare-take care of your hands and nails-your hands will be close up with the ‘knitty cam.’ Hopefully, they give you a manicure, if not, you better come prepared.

  90. Oh my gosh! Squeeky Cheese! There is a little part of me that has looked for the squeeky cheese in every super market trip I have made since I was about 8. I’m just glad to hear that it still exists…and now I finally know where it comes from!

  91. What in the world is “squeeky cheese curds”? Sounds strange, which naturally means that I wanna try some!!
    I adopted an angel off the local tiny town Angel Tree once I found out that they not only allowed but encouraged folks to make handmade gifts! My little angel is getting socks…more socks…and even more hand knitted socks.

  92. Squeaky cheese curds? Eee! (that’s me, squeaking.) You wouldn’t think this born-&-raised California girl would know those, but yes, I dated a gal from Wisconsin, and I have carnally known the joy that is squeaky cheese curds. I’m so happy for you!

  93. Are there no cheese curds in Toronto? Sadness! For the record though, cheese curds are plentiful in Buffalo (though I haven’t figured out yet where the freshest ones are), and it’s a fairly short drive. =)

  94. “”squeaky cheese curds””
    that’s real? i thought that was someting someone just imagined…i may have to have some, somehow.

  95. I skimmed through all of the comments so far and only saw two vague references to the bidet (sp?) amongst all the cheese. Are they that common in parts of the world other than Florida that it struck no-one else as uhm… weird? I’ve seen one or two in person, but I’ve yet to figure out exactly how they work or _why_ you’d want one. Maybe Wikipedia has the answer, but I’m not sure I really want to know.
    p.s. You need to make a HalfWayDay WordCount Update!!! πŸ™‚

  96. Squeaky cheese curds rock!!! Except when I have them I have to wrestle them away from my boyfriend…I envy you your whole package. Anyhoo…A SOCK A DAY??? I suddenly feel worthless as a knitter…my socks take months…probably due to my constantly setting them aside and getting sidetracked (my skinny sock has currently been set aside for a brilliant white and blue tasseled fez hat!)This hat is so awesome (if I may say so myself) that when I finish it and wear it in public I’m going to have a hard time from getting on the bus and screaming YES I MADE THIS HAT MYSELF!!!!!!!!!Oh well I always take the same bus and the regulars always see me knitting perhaps they wont cart me away to the loony bin…one can only hope.. I worry that they would take my sharp pointy sticks away and then I will really lose it. Sorry needed to gloat to someone about my hat (I’m blogless) Love ya Steph!

  97. Love squeakers! We have them here a Hilmar Cheese Factory in California. They make more cheese than anywhere else in the U.S. Yum! If you get a chance would you please look at the sweater on my blog and tell me what you think? My husband spun the yarn. Thank you.

  98. I see the lost is found. Where was the heel-and-toe yarn hiding? You have gotten a lot done on the sock.

  99. I take squeaky cheese curds for granted living in Green Bay, WI. Plan a visit here and we’ll bring the fresh, warm curds!!

  100. i *heart* squeaky cheese curds! great in wisconsin, of course. i was surprised to find the fabulous cheese curds on the WSU campus (Washington State University) when i moved there directly from LaCrosse. yum! the squeakier the better in my experience!

  101. I know I’ve said before how much I love your blog, your books, your insane knitting challenges (KO, anybody?), but sometimes a line just jumps out at me. Like this one:
    “Apparently my relationship with reality is loose, at best.”
    Girl, you are so right! I recently started a new job and haven’t quite gotten over the “what was I thinking?!” part. I’m not going to have your quote tattooed on my forehead (the powers that be frown on that), but I’m thinking: t-shirt? At least for casual Fridays . . .

  102. Oh-h-h-h! Montreal, McGill, knitters and cheese curds-to-die-for…Dutchman’s Dairy in the Okanagan makes ’em almost as good…almost…but not quite. Fond memories of home (yeah, I’ve lived 30 years here and 24 there but hey…)

  103. Yum, cheese curds.
    Next time you’re in the States, find a Culver’s. They serve them fried…..

  104. Cheese curds are simply finger-sized strips of young cheese, before it is compressed into wheel or brick-shaped forms and aged. I don’t know why they squeak, but it does make a delightful noise while you chew (and chew) them. My great-aunt and uncle lived in Harrowsmith, Ontario, home of Harrowsmith Cheese Factory (near Kingston). Whenever my family would visit them, our trip could not be complete without going to the factory store and buying the still-warm cheese curds to munch on the long drive home.
    Good luck with the socks!

  105. My friend Juliet turned me on to your blog, and when I talk with her next, I will say “thank you!!!” I so enjoy it and following all your (and your socks) travels! Thanks a ton! …also wondering if cheese curds are available anywhere near Grand Rapids, MI?

  106. Squeaky cheese curds! Je t’aime! I never knew there was such a thing until I moved to Wisconsin this summer, and I was amazed. I’ll just bet that some of the cheese curds from the Madison farmer’s market would give your Quebecoise curds a run for their money. But to everyone that’s been grossed out by the idea of “cheese” and “curds” together, or by cheese that squeaks, let me go one step further: around here we also have FRIED cheese curds. Let that thought settle in your arteries for a minute.
    Don’t stress yourself on the socks, though, you’re making quicker progress than I ever could.

  107. Oooh I see me! Second picture, on the left with a striped shirt. I’m still sad I couldn’t stay and get my pic taken with the sock πŸ™ Come back, ok? πŸ˜‰

  108. Heh, we Vermonters would like a visit sometime. We have three lovely yarn shops in Burlington, and I know we would all love it if you came here. Next time you are in Montreal, or in Vermont, please let us know…and we might drive up there?
    Kathleen in Vermont…..fellow LC and Knitter

  109. What are squeaky cheese curds? What are cheese curds? I’m so lost… maybe it’s because I don’t really eat cheese. Ever. I don’t even like pizza since it has cheese on it. You get the idea.

  110. OMG! Cheese curds??!!! I LOVE Squeaky cheese!!! And as a native Oregonian, I’m supposed to love Tillamook cheese, but their curds aren’t up to snuff. I love the ones made by the Amish in Iowa *swoon*

  111. I’m with Amy. I saw a bidet once but…how exactly do you use the thing. Everyone else seems to be stuck on the cheese. I can’t get over the personal hygiene device. Please explain if it isn’t too, um, impolite to ask.

  112. mmm…cheese curds! wow…I haven’t had any in a long time. *mental note: con Dr. O into bringing me some next time he’s back home in Wisconsin!*

  113. Delurking…
    This is going to seem pretty random. Anyways, I read this blog all the time. I used to live in Toronto until June. Only a 10 minute walk from Lettuce Knits! I miss that place soooo much.
    Anyhow, I got to thinking about Toronto, and my son’s birth (5.5 months ago already!) and I decided that I would post to tell you that I read ‘Knitting Rules’ while I was in labour. It was the only thing that kept me in good humour and kept me from stabbing my husband with knitting needles. (He decided to sleep! While I was in pain!). Labour was looooong (I was able to read the whole book). Anyways, I wrote all my labour updates in the front pages of the book. I decided to put the book in with my son’s newborn stuff, so that he can read it one day…

  114. I’m glad you got your squeaky cheese. Come to Oregon sometime! Tillamook Cheese Factory has the best squeaky cheese ever, and it’s made right there for you to see!
    Another great place to find squeaky cheese is at the Washington State University dairy lab. There’s great, delicious, best ever ice cream there, too!

  115. Mmmm…..cheeeezzzeee curds. And when you get them home and they’re cold and a day old, pop ’em in the micro for about 8 seconds – just shy of melting them. Warm, salty, squeeky. Yum. Lick your fingers good. I hafta ask, tho – what’s up with the bidet? Do you guys really *use* those things?!
    Ann, the blogless

  116. Mmmmmm cheese curd!!!!!!!!! I grew up in Jefferson County NY, the land of many, many, dairy farms. In fact when I was growing up, there were probably more cows in Jefferson and Lewis county than there were people! We always had squeaky cheese curds. As a kid, they were the only type of cheese curd worth eating. It was awesome. Your food talked back to you! How cool is that! And then you got to see the outside of the Molson plant! I’m so jealous! Cheese curds and beer! Since I lived about 30 miles from Canada, my friends and I used to go on beer runs to your lovely country to get Molson Extra Stock and Bradors. MMMmmmmmmm. This was before the Beer Revolution in this country and all the terrific microbrews. If you were a beer lover and wanted a beer, you went to Canada. At least you did after you had your first Canadian beer (preferably you drank it in Canada because what was sent to this country just didn’t compare to what was sold in Canada. Big difference!) Ok, you are making homesick! Now all I need are butter tarts and I’ll feel like I’m in a timewarp! Thanks for the walk down memory lane. Now I need to find some squeaky cheese curds!

  117. People’s Liberated Knitting Front? Splitters!!We’re the Liberated People’s Knitting Front! (Just kidding. With apologies but it sounded so much like Monty Python’s Holy Grail)

  118. The best way to experience a cheese curd is either very fresh or deep fried with a coating and a glass of Dr.Pepper mmmmm we also do mozzarella sticks the same way.

  119. The best way to experience a cheese curd is either very fresh or deep fried with a coating and a glass of Dr.Pepper mmmmm we also do mozzarella sticks the same way.

  120. Steph, when are you doing the show? Would you like for me to knit a pair of socks for you? I’m in Twentynine Palms which is maybe 100 miles from Hollywood. Not at all too far to drive (by California standards.) I need to get out more anyway. Really, I’d be honored to help. Sort of a pay-it-forward except it would be a pay-it-sideways or maybe backwards, I’m not sure. Gimme a holla! (I learned that on TV)

  121. Cheese curds in Montreal? learn something new every day.
    I knew about the ones in Wisconsin… I actually thought they were a Cheesehead kind of thing. It’s going to take a while to process cheesecurds into my vision of Montreal as a hip, cosmopolitan city. Maybe my view of Wisconsin as a rural, unhip kinda place needs to be adjusted.

  122. You can buy cheese curds pretty much anywhere in French Canada..
    I wish I could get Knitty Gritty here. It’s on DIY, isn’t it? Is there anything else in the fiber pursuits line on that channel, or anything else that would make it worth purchasing?

  123. O.M.G. last night at Stitch n Bitch , I got to meet Sage, did I dream that or did it really happen. I was to gushy eh.
    Yo Rahel H. Sage came over last night!(gush gush gush)
    The harlot is home everyone,Amy is off the mountain and hoilday knitting(or socks,for some) is a GO.

  124. Squeaky cheese? And you Canadians wonder why we make fun of you? I’m just kidding, of course; the lower 48 certainly doesn’t have the market cornered on normal foods – I’m still getting used to a husband who eats okra, collard greens, and other Southern delicacies.

  125. I was hoping that you could please tell me what knitting needles you use? Those blue ones in your travelling sock look pretty sharp. Are they?
    I just cast on my first pair of socks but I’m finding that the needles aren’t as pointy as I’d like.
    Any recommendations?
    Thanks in advance. πŸ™‚

  126. I continue to be inspired and awed by talent that abounds in the knitting world!! You, of course, lead the pack, but I wanted to thank you for sharing all the others that are so incredibly talented. WOW!

  127. You’ve made me so nostalgic for Montreal. I had a holiday there a few years back and absolutely fell in love with Montreal. It even made me want to brush up on my school girl french skills.

  128. If you go to Burlington, VT, I may have to find a way to go visit the relatives! And then drive up to Barton for CTH, just for good measure…(sigh)
    It’s been so long…but that’s why I’m knitting the Green Mtn Madness feather and fan socks – in honor of my VT heritage…
    And just how is it you can so easily make me want to move to Canada? I’m so “up” for a Molson!
    lolol!

  129. Yes my Dearling Fellow Knitters – squeaky cheese curds DO exist and I throw in my cheese wedge hat with my fellow Badgers – we have the BEST! (But oh yeah, I’m going to try that melting ’em & eating ’em with a fork trick. Bidet? well…I’ve never seen a real one, but I have to admit, I laugh thinking about it. One question to my dear knowledgeable cosmopolitans: do you dry off with paper afters? Do you sit there long enough to knit a few rows?
    My new dentures (LONG desired and I’m tickled!) should be healed enough for soft cheese curds in about a week….and boy what a great opportunity it’s been to sit and knit! (the things we do for legitimate time to do nothing else…)
    πŸ˜€ <– me

  130. Okay, I’m kinda freakin’ out about Maria-Michele, because that is my name too (except I spell it with two “L”s). Never before have I ever met someone with the same first and middle name as me. A world connected by knitblogs…
    So, I am intrigued by these cheese curds. What’s going on with them? Are they just chunks of cheese? Are they filled with things? They look a bit like dumplings. Now I have one more thing to add to my “Reasons I Need to Go to Montreal” list.
    Loving the blog. Keep it going!

  131. PS: In the early 18th century, the four- and five-year-old daughters in the family often knitted two or more pairs of socks a week for their family members. No gameboys then….

  132. My husband’s family from upstate NY introduced me to cheese curds. I love them. We eat them every summer when we make our annual trek to the the family cottage on Lake Ontario.
    Wish i was there now. No wait, it may be cold there today. Let’s just say I can’t wait to get back next summer. –Kim

  133. OH.MY.GOSH!!! I haven’t seen a bidet since ages… I almost forgot how it looked like! Thanks for that sweet… so sweet… reminder!
    J’ai beaucoup aime le reportage sur Montreal. Merci! πŸ™‚

  134. You realize, of course, that you have two choices now regarding coming to the upper Midwest, i.e., Wisconsin, Iowa or Minnesota:
    1) tell no one, sneak in & out and accomplish The Mission
    or
    2) tell everyone and have enough cheese curds to last you until The Second Coming!

  135. A sock a day might be doable if you don’t do anything else at all, but can you enlist a few friends to help out? Just to get you a little ahead of the game? Heck, I’ll help out! What do you need?

  136. ahh le bidet. perfect for soaking 100% wool socks and rinsing bathing suits after a day at the beach. and teaching little kids how to wash their hands “comme des grands.”

  137. Have you ever tried Halloumi? It’s a middle-eastern cheese that’s incredibly squeaky and very tasty when grilled and served with bitter greens.

  138. Oh, cheese curds. The Beaujoulais Nouveau of cheese-dom. YUMMY!!!!!! I’m hungry now. As a native Wisconsinite now living in NYC, that is definitely on my list of things I miss. I had some shipped to me once (almost ate the whole 1 lb bag before I stopped myself). Great, but not the same as fresh.
    If you’ve never tried them – DO!!! You’ll not regret it.

  139. Stephanie,
    We loved you in Montreal. But you have just given me a great reason not to move to Ontario. No cheses curds??? I can even get them at home in Labrador.
    Katherine

  140. OK, here’s the thing. When I was 19, I went to Quebec with my mom. That was my first exposure to frites with Strange Toppings. I mean, salt and vinegar, fine – they do that in Maine. But this gravy and cheese business, I don’t know. I tried them. I ate quite a lot in fact. I even washed it down with some Fin du Monde, because, well, I could, since I was of age in Canada and I convinced my mom to buy me beer.
    That was a real score.
    At any rate, back to the cheese. Do you have any more information for those of us below the border on WHY this is such a wonderful thing? I have been drinking Maudite and Fin du Monde and Donne de Dieu ever since but the cheese curd didn’t quite make the cut. I’m willing to give it another chance though…

  141. I just went & read the Wiki for “Squeaky Cheese Curds”.
    WHY you would want to eat something that squeaks – I suppose it’s an acquired thing.
    πŸ˜‰ I’m glad you found them, at any rate!

  142. my contribution to the insanity–you could probably knit a whole PAIR of these in a day. Using two skeins of Debby Bliss Cashmerino, knit up a pair of the Ribble socks in Socks, Socks, Socks. I pulled two skeins out of a clearance bin and made my first pair on a trip to Charleston SC and Savannah GA last spring. That yarn feels very luxurious on your feet AND is machine wash!

  143. Apparently no subject is sacared for the Yarn Harlot. So that said – I’m glad to see I’m not the only one who’s wondered about those mysterious bidet thingies. So Stephanie – can you give us Americans some suggestions on how one would actually use such an item? Do the average Canadians have them in their homes?

  144. I was so going to get to your Montreal stop and we ended up with company and I couldn’t get there. Waaaaaaaahhhh. I am transplanted to Quebec from Nova Scotia where I was/am pals with Barbara in NS.
    As for squeeky cheese: when they are wonderfully frsh they squeak as you chew them…like the way chewing rubber bands would squeek as you chew them only with much cheesy deliciousnesss. Cheese curds and beer..Quebecois diet..oh and with sugar pie for dessert!!! I’ve gained back 17 pounds since I moved here.
    Please say you will be coming back!!!!

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