Marvellous Madison

So the sock and I got up (I shall not write the ungodly hour of our travel on here, the sock doesn’t like talking about it, and we flew from Northampton to Detroit, then Detroit to Madison…. by then I was sufficiently buoyed by airline coffee to take a picture and knit a little.


I keep forgetting to say what the travelling sock yarn is this time. You know I like to show a nice little Canadian sock yarn the world when I do this, and I love this yarn. Red Bird Knits “Romney Sock”, lambswool grown and milled in Ontario, dyed by the Fleece Artist in Halifax, and sold in Toronto. It’s a lovely rustic-ish yarn, not at all like the firmly spun merinos most dyers are using for blanks right now. Really different and pleasant to use. (It’s standing up to the particular abuse I put a travelling sock through really well.) I don’t see the colourway on her site right now, but hand dyed art is like that. You gotta takes what you gets.

The sock and I saw the Capitol in Madison, Wisconsin,


but most of all, we saw knitters.






I know this bunch looks innocent sitting there, but these are some of the most seriously fun knitters I’ve had the pleasure of running into – and I’m not just saying that because I got more beer at the Madison stop than ANYWHERE else on the whole tour – regardless of number of knitters. (Naturally, to avoid a drunken harlot incident that left me wounded today, I passed some (not all…oh no) on to the bookstore folks who helped make the whole thing work. They like knitters a lot now too.) I swear that when a well trained Canadian thinks a city is big on beer, they are a force to be reckoned with. There were the requisite first sock knitters… Anna, Emily, Stacie, Annette, Beth in Wisconsin (double teaming with a washcloth too), Leslie and Mary, who brought her first “Good” socks, which is an impulse I respect entirely.



Then there was Kate, who is the last one there, and deserves honourable mention for her first sock, (will eventually be a pair…don’t rush her) which started out as monkey socks, and wound up as Monster socks.


My daughter Meg just sat up straight in her chair when she saw those. I’m this far away and I can feel it. She’ll be knitting a knock off of these by the time I get home. Meg? Go study.

Mums and babies came, although my ability to get them to smile was clearly off this evening. There’s Lisa and little Matthew, who is three weeks old, but has an adjusted age of -1 week. (I love the way he looks like he’s saying “no pictures please”) There’s Susan and Anya, who was amused, but did not smile. Kitty Mommy and Isaak, who was an unyielding ROCK in the smiling department, and finally Lee and Wren, who didn’t even wake up for the event -though her mother made up for it.


Hailey – the requisite young knitter represented for her kind.


There were washcloths. Meet Kathy, Sue, and Becky – who brought a “cheese cloth”. (Har-dee har-har.)


Here’s Jaala, who puts out an awesome Knitzine… Knitcircus. (Let’s here it for the Indie gals.)

(It really is good. I had a poke through my copy.)


Here’s Ellen from Sheepwreck. (Totally helpful and awesome blog for spinners.)


Adrienne, showing up with a sense of humour and the first of several bottles of Fat Squirrel beer.


Sock guy Ken showing off a pair of size 17 socks. (He was advised not to date the recipient, lest rumours be true and lives be lost.)


Connie is a knitting taxi driver, and I can’t tell you how much I wish I had been taking a taxi to the Madison airport instead of a car to Milwaukee this morning. I think we would have had an awesome time.


Mary wants to say hi to her knitterly friend Tracy in Doha, Qatar.


Maxine is the cheese lady. (For obvious reasons. That there is a big bag of squeaky cheese…all mine.)


Julie rounded out the meal with a bottle of Monty Pythons Holy Grail Ale.


Last but not least, quite possibly the best thing in these parts. My beloved Dale-Harriet. Present, and accounted for.


Whew. There was more, so much more, but time is short if I’m planning on showing up clean in Carmel, Indiana tonight. I lost a little time when a very nice man accidentally took my suitcase instead of his when we landed here. When the only case left going around was one that looked a lot like mine, but wasn’t mine…I went to the airline. A thousand thanks to Midwest Connect, who tracked down the charming Bill (who was hugely sorry and back at the airport with my bag like lightning.)

I don’t know if he opened it, but I had to wonder what he would have thought if he did. Beer. Yarn. Chocolate.

Heaven knows what he would have called it, but I call it a party in a bag.

137 thoughts on “Marvellous Madison

  1. Beer, yarn and chocolate sound like a perfectly heavenly combination – especially when you’re sitting at your desk at work wishing you were at home, knitting. And drinking beer. The chocolate goes without saying 🙂
    Travel safe!

  2. Beer, yarn, chocolate?Sounds like the perfect carry-on luggage to me! Have fun, Steph!!

  3. It was nice to see you in Madison. Thanks for the entertaining evening; even if I had to travel with two kids hopped up on Tootsie Pops and Laffy Taffy.

  4. Man! You were 15 minutes from my house! If you ever have a connection thru Detroit- I am more than glad to bring you a (home cooked)hot meal and company while you wait 😉
    Have fun try to rest and keep your party in a bag handy;)

  5. I get so jealous looking at all of the lucky people who get to visit with you in person. Living in Montana, we are lucky if Santa comes to visit us once a year. We have good micro brews here, and I know a LOT of knitters! Hint Hint!

  6. I LOVE squeaky cheese!!!! I got some for the first time at the Tillamook factory in Oregon last November. My brother and sister-in-law went there in March and DID NOT bring me any squeaky cheese…..I’m still not speaking to them! (KIDDING!) Enjoy it!!
    I might have to drive to San Francisco this weekend to see you!

  7. I forgot to mention that I would be happy to be your personal guide through Yellowstone!

  8. Madison is my favoritest city ever. Did you get any Babcock Hall ice cream? Keep it in mind fore next time if you didn’t. DEE-licious.
    And what more do you need in the world than yarn, chocolate, and beer? I could take some peanut butter and coffee as well, but really… you’ve got it made.

  9. When is Jamie the wonder publisist going to book you on Conan O’Brian show?
    (the audience is smaller than the one at Webs, and even non knitter will enjoy anyone who packs a party in a bag.
    you would be perfect for his show. (forget Martha S, you are definately the right person for his show!

  10. It occured to me on the drive home from Madison (2 hours or so) that the last time I had cheese curds was when I visited my ex-in-laws in northern NY, and we crossed the border for Tim Horton’s and poutine. Why do you always forget about what’s in your own backyard?
    This time I’m buying the curds for me.
    Glad you enjoyed them, (some of) the beer, and Wisconsin. I’m still snorting with laughter today.

  11. I should pack like that for every trip. It would certainly put me in a better mood wherever/whenever I land….

  12. We loved having you in Madison! And I am very sorry to say that little Isaak turned on the flirt not five minutes after we went through the line. He must have been playing hard-to-get!
    I read the blog and am amazed by your stamina, but I have to say I am completely floored after seeing it in person. I can’t imagine how you do it and are still walking upright!

  13. And I thought I was the only one who knit at stoplights!!!!! Thanks for a wonderful evening. Next time you’re here, I’ll make sure I bring you some chocolate from one of Madison’s many amazing chocolatiers!!!

  14. You’re lucky about the suitcase mix-up. Did you ever see the movie “What’s Up, Doc?” with Barbra Streistand, Ryan O’Neal, and 4 identical suitcases containing 1) Diamond Jewelry, 2) Secret Govenment Documents, 3) Musical Ignacious Rocks, & 4) Barbra’s Undies? When I read about your suitcase problem, I immediately thought of a Yarn Harlot version of the movie. It’s definitely one of the funniest screw-ball movies ever made, but I think you could do an even funnier remake!

  15. I wish I would have known sooner that you were going to be in San Francisco. One of these days you will hopefully come back to NorCal, and maybe by then I’ll have something worthy knitted. That is, if you don’t wear yourself out with this crazy travel schedule. Remember, Beer, Yarn and Chocolate, no matter how good, are no substitute for Rest and Sleep.

  16. Fat Squirrel is the BEST! The brewery is wonderful and not far from Madison. If you ever go back, have someone take you to eat at the Great Dane. It’s a microbrewery near the Capitol and they have very good beer and food. It’s a pity you had such a short stay because it’s a fun town. Sometime you could possibly even get those cheese curds deep fried. That’s really good with the beer!
    I hope you come back soon so I might have a chance to see you!

  17. Party in a bag — good one! Wonder what the bookstore people think of knitters now?

  18. Fat Squirrel! Cheese Curds! I miss my home state!
    Steph, getting copious amounts of beer in Wisconsin shouldn’t surprise you. At all. We thrive on it.

  19. Yarn and chocolate (you can have my beer) sound like great travelling companions. Glad you caught up with the charming Bill…..

  20. Thank you, Stephanie, for such a fun evening in Madison (and for deleting the first photo of me and my first sock!)

  21. I call that party in a bag also!
    It’s great seeing Kittymommy and the Beebs.
    Amazing getting your bag back that quickly!

  22. I agree with erinelizabeth — that fat squirrel and cheese curds makes me homesick!

  23. Beer. Yarn. Chocolate. Hmm…I think I’ll try packing a suitcase full of that for my next business trip.

  24. Thanks for a raucous good time, and for helping me win that bet. If you want a photo of it to post later, let me know! I’ll be posting it on my blog soon.

  25. Oh, I’m so sorry I couldn’t make it! Darn working to pay bills!
    I’m glad you made it to Madison safe and sound and had a great time. Maybe I can catch you in Chicago on a reschedule yet! 🙂

  26. Beer, yarn, and chocolate?!?!!? Hell yeah I want to travel with you! 🙂 I’m a little surprised he gave you back your bag!

  27. Hooray for Madison, and hooray for you! Fat Squirrel is one of my favorite beers, and Madison is one of my favorite places in the world.

  28. Very sorry to have missed you in Madison (unfortunately-scheduled work meeting!) but I’m glad you got your fill of Wisconsin beer and cheese. 🙂

  29. Wow…I don’t know how you manage to stay sane with all these cities in so many days. Do you ever get sick of the travelling? Good thing there’s always such wonderful company to meet you with beer and chocolate when you get there though. 🙂 Glad you had a good time.

  30. So awesome to see you last night and to get to meet you! I did warn the dyer–so she should be prepared.
    Have a good time in Carmel!

  31. It’s been years since I’ve been to Wisconsin, but I always thought it was a lovely state, and Madison a fine city. I think I’ve been to that Borders, too! (grin)

  32. I’m so glad you had a good time! As one of the many beer gifters (third from last in line) I was just gobsmacked to meet you. Thus the dorky comment (I should have said “Now is when I say something terribly witty and hilarious so you put me in your blog,” instead of “Here’s a squirrel that won’t steal your fibre.”)
    And of course I think of the punch line in the car on the way home: “…and when you’re done drinking it, you can chuck the bottle at the little bugger!”
    Thank you so much for visiting Madison. Hope you can come back someday when things aren’t so gray and brown and spend a little more time here!

  33. I’m so glad that you are having a great time. All of the events look like so much fun, I wish that I could be at them all.
    I’m still waiting here in Phoenix for you to visit. I can beg forever if needed and I’m told it gets annoying after a while so I really suggest that you just come before that happens, I don’t like to be annoying.

  34. A party in a bag is right. But what else would you come away with from Wisconsin knitters? I learned how to knit from that bunch! They know how to have a good time.

  35. It is truly amazing that, with all the cheese chocolate and beer you are given, that you don’t weight a thousand pounds. I know that I would have to have a lifetime membership to Weight Watchers, or be married to a bariatric surgeon. I would love to know your secret. Safe travels nevertheless. I am looking forward to seeing you in Salt Lake. May I bring you a bar of handmade soap? It’s not fattening at all.

  36. Beer, yarn and chocolate? What more could a harlot wish for? I hate that I missed you but am hoping that you’ll be travelling to New England again soon. Connecticut is a beautiful state and we would love to show it to you.

  37. Man, I’ll bet you *enjoyed* drinking Fat Squirrel beer. Talk about a sense of revenge! Plus squeaky cheese; wow, you had some real food! Madison treated you good. Sock guy Ken and the dating advice resulted in mad snerking over here, and thanks for the info on the sock yarn. As always, I didn’t manage to remember how you answered that question in PDX, and it was nagging me to death!
    Thank heavens Bill is not only nice but speedy. What would you do without yarn, beer and chocolate? Sure, the Carmel knitters would take care of you, but ack, the worrying!

  38. I have never found a more better dessert than beer and chocolate. I’m known to my in-laws as the beer & brownie girl. It’s tradition. They also knon me as the girl who tends to over-do-it on maritinis. And wine. I see a pattern here. Hmmm.

  39. Okay, I’ve gotta know…how the heck do you get knitting needles on an airplane in this day & age?!?

  40. Love reading your blog. Where did your Dale-Harriet get that cool red & blue sheep pin? I need one.

  41. Yes, having just returned from BC, I know how all those bags look alike. We need to develop a knitterly adornment so we can easily identify the right bag.

  42. Did I mention that you were stellar at Webs, and completely saved my kids’ Sociology final? She’s doing it on the knitting demographic. My baby, writing knitting papers for college. I am so proud.

  43. I’m sorry I missed you in Madison, but glad you got to see the Capitol and the great Madison knitters. I’m especially glad that they treated you right with gifts of good Wisconsin beer! Safe travels on to your next destination!

  44. There’s no place in the world like Madison for beer. Unfortunately, you’re about 3.5 months ahead of schedule for August brings the Great Taste of the Midwest Beer Festival.
    Through foggy memories of this wonderful event, I can tell you that ~$20 gets you a glass and an entry to a 4 hour panoply of 100+ microbreweries. On the lake. In August. And there’s no limit to the pours.
    Inevitably, I end up sideways in the grass. It’s worth it. Lordy, I miss Wisconsin …

  45. mmm… cheese curds. i’ll be back in wiscoinsin in a few weeks (grew up right there in madison) and can’t wait to get my east coast hands on some curdy, delicious squeeky cheese.

  46. To all who are curious about the mammoth: there is a Ravelry group for Kenosha, WI, called K-town knitters. We decided that our “mascot” would be a mammoth since two, yes two, nearly complete skeletons were dug up on two different county farms. While these discoveries may not seem like such hot stuff, they were dated and it was found that mammoths were in this area 3 to 4 thousand years later than archeologists originally thought, it rather rocked the archeology world. The original bones even had butchering marks on them, and the assembled replicas can be seen in our public museum.
    We took this a step further with our little mascot–she has the infamous “Cheesehead” hat on (orange cheddar), a real wool sweater for our wooly mammoth, and a K-town knitters banner (though that’s hard to see in Maxine’s picture), and she comes to all our knit nights. She had to come with us to Madison to get a pic with the Harlot and her sock!
    The best part though is my first sock knit with my yarn I got being a Skein of the Month winner has Harlot mojo on it!! I will only wear them…when I finally finish them…for very special occasions. Because “who would carry emergency knitting with them?”!!! What fun we had last night!
    And Beverly, “What’s Up, Doc?” is one of my favorite movies!! LOVE Madeline Khan!!

  47. Wow, another knitting Melinda posting on the Harlot’s blog. Cool!
    Harlotta – Milwaukee of many midwestern brewing cities is the Goddess of all US brewtowns. I would be horribly disappointed if they couldn’t lubricate your needles.
    That suitcase gives getting bagged a new meaning, but it’s a workable combination for me!

  48. Thank you (and your wonder publicist) for coming to Madison. I knew you would talk about knitting and I know from your blog that you are a great storyteller, but I had no idea that I would be in stitches, pun intended, the entire evening. You are hilarious and a very very welcome break from my dissertation. I couldn’t stay to say hello (again, dissertation), but I hope to meet you in person next time.
    ps. I even have a first pair of socks 🙂

  49. Thanks for making it to Indiana! It is nicknamed the “Crossroads of America.” Must be true because all the best people show up here eventually. A couple of months ago it was the Dalai Lama, last month Jane Goodall, tonight the Yarn Harlot, and next month Eric Clapton. See what I mean?

  50. Man I miss my Wisconsin beer….yeah and the cheese curds aren’t too bad either, squeaker the better!
    And trust me–the Fat Squirrel is AWESOME….
    (and yes the mammoths are pretty cool–speaking as an archaeologist that really did start in the Midwest….)

  51. Madison’s the closest to me you’ve ever been (remember the Wisconsin washcloth with the bobble?) (oops, wait, I guess technically you *were* closer to me MYSELF at Sock Camp, OK, but I meant my home!) but since I’d seen you in Mpls & Orcas, I stayed home, what with work Monday & Tuesday & all. Not to mention the snow Monday morning. But looks like fun, and Dale-Harriet and I have been trying to rendezvous for quite a while. This summer, hopefully. Looks like lots of beer and cheese — as it should be in Wisconsin.
    My 10-year-old daughter, the Gothlet, will be at the Capitol Monday on the requisite school field trip; I’ll tell her the Yarn Harlot & the sock saw the Capitol too, she knows very well who you are (in fact, as a knitter herself, and being dragged along to her older sister’s band concert tonight, she was reading “Things I Learned From Knitting” during the other grades’ performances).
    I wanted to tell you and all devoted comment-readers that, after everyone at Sock Camp who wanted one had bought some of the awesome “Knitters Without Borders” Socks That Rock Lightweight yarn, I bought a second skein with a scheme in mind which has now come to fruition; and similarly for the second book I had you sign.
    My blog post today announces a Blogiversary Raffle to benefit charities with a knitting tie-in: Médecins sans Frontières/DWB, as well as Knitters for Knockers (benefiting breast cancer screening and research) and The House that Yarn Built, rebuilding New Orleans. Click on my name to be taken to the blogiversary raffle post.
    Prizes? The aforementioned gorgeous and sought-after skein of STR in the Knitters Without Borders colorway; and your (signed) book, which I asked you to sign “Knitblogs Rock”!, as well as a skein of lovely and hard-to-get Twisted Fiber Arts yarn, and an amazing skein of Wollmeise in the Pfauenauge colorway. So, again, devoted comment readers, and you when you have time, check it out before May 11th, the deadline to get in on the prize drawing!
    However, as for you right now, get some sleep, tomorrow is another day (hear that in a Scarlett O’Hara voice), and I hope all goes smoothly from here on out in your travels.

  52. I’m wondering the significance of the critter with the long tusks that the “cheese lady” is holding. It looks as if it lost a fight with a knitter! :O)

  53. Did anyone bring you New Glarus Organic Revolution? I almost did, but figured you’d already be getting plenty of beer (and it looks like I was right…) It’s one of my local favorites.
    Anyhoo, I had a great time (even though I was totally incompetent at introducing myself), and I’m glad my girl Anya tolerated the picture-taking so long after her bedtime!

  54. When you said she was a knitting taxi driver, I thought you said she was KNITTING A TAXI DRIVER! Time to go to bed.

  55. Watch out for the aftershocks. There may still be a few after the earthquake in Carmel, IN last week.

  56. OMG, I slightly know 3 people in Madison and it turns out 2 of them are in pictures from this event. Hello Annette and Dale! Pretty bizarre considering I’m not a regular reader and just meandered in. Not to mention that I don’t knit, though I have read “… Casts Off”. Is the universe trying to tell me something?

  57. Sooo…it was YOU brought the snow! We wondered (but actually, it’s appreciated here…”if you don’t like the weather, wait a minute”) I have to say, that was the most fun I’ve had in a LONG time, and we were all so excited to have you here. I have to admit (blatant total) partiality, but did you notice all of our babies behaved wonderfully? My friend Donna-who-crochets-brilliantly had no idea what to expect; she came along as it was our regular “knit night” for the week anyway, and she came away tickled to the very root of her shiny hook! Merci beaucoup, and thank you, and megwetch. I was Officially Excited about your coming for two weeks (just ordinarily excited before that) and not only did you not disappoint, but it was better than I was anticipating (and may I say, I have the very active, keenly-honed, Disturbed Imagination of the kid-story writer/historical reenactor) and I can do some serious anticipating. AND! if all that wasn’t enough, I actually got to the point where I could start decreasing to end that @$()#@)$&$#@ TOQUE!! I’ll finish it at Late Night Knit on Friday and our Heather will ring the Finished Object bell! Your whole visit was just CAPITOL. (get it? It’s late, I’m going to bed now)

  58. I’m glad you enjoyed Madison. I have wild fantasies of landing a job there when I’m done with this dratted degree. They have a huge population of leftist-liberal-wackos like myself.

  59. ah! madison! i live in portland, or (where you just were) but my family and heart are in madison. how i wish i was travelling with you! no surprise there was an abundance of cheese and beer (and hopefully very friendly folks as well). have a safe flight 🙂

  60. Hi Mary!!! (waving and grinning)
    That was so darn CUTE! I kept saying “Awwww,” and grinning and showed it to my husband and said “Isn’t that so cute?”
    And he’s like: What do you mean, “cute”? What’s cute about it?
    And then it struck me: Inexplicable Knitterly Behaviour. Score! High five, Mary! High five, Stephanie!
    Thanks a bunch – means a lot to me over here.

  61. Can somebody please tell me what the hell “squeaky cheese” is?
    Lindy in Brisbane Australia.

  62. Isaak will obviously be a force to be reckoned with when he gets older. May his mother survive.
    Very nice to see Dale-Harriet and put a face to the comments.
    I assume you had too much yarn for the carry-on and the beer can’t sit up front, but you checked the chocolate? And you very nearly lost it.

  63. Wow! I missed your first trip to Madison…I was pretty sick last night…Icky…But I knit on knowing that it is not your last trip to Mad City! Yes. I will be there next Spring. Will you please give this presentation and the new one just for me? Thank you very much. You WILL be rewarded for such a double performance!
    Sara in WI

  64. Glad to hear you had a rockin’ time in Madison! If the Bill who accidentally took your case is anything like my DH, Bill then he probably thought, “This is the last time I let my wife pack for me.” I love the story of the Mammoth!

  65. I’ve been long waiting for your post on Madison (my adopted hometown, how I miss thee!) But I’m sooo glad someone brought you some New Glarus. If ever in Madison again, I highly recommend Spotted Cow.. YUM. I hope someone had the good sense to take you to the Great Dane as well. Anyone can find a good beer there 🙂

  66. Ok, I’m pressured to comment because of your first photo. How on earth were you allowed to take needles onto an airplane? The last time I travelled anywhere, they confiscated an emery board that didn’t even have a point! I get unbelieveably bored on airline flights and used to knit on them, way back when. I’ve just not bothered now, because I figured they’d just take it away…

  67. I’ve wondered for so very long — How do you keep it all straight? How do you keep track of all the names of all the people in all the pictures that you take? Pleeease tell me your secret!!!

  68. Oooooooo!!! I like flying with Midwest……just for the warm chocolat chip cookies!!!!!

  69. I second the recommendation of Spotted Cow beer…tied for my favorite beer ever, and unfortunately only available in Wisconsin. Lucky bastards.
    Lindy, “squeaky cheese” is fresh cheese curds…when you bite into the really good kind, they make a squeaking noise.

  70. I’m so jealous!!!! First, you go to Madison, the city I was married in and delivered my first baby(30 years ago!!!?), now off to Carmel, which is one suburb away from one of my daughters. I was so planning to be there, but I’m in Alabama helping out my stepmum.

  71. Coming out of Lurkdome to say I truely hope Bob opened your suitcase. Can you imagine the stories he is telling at the office today.
    Oh and about the cute cap Jaala is wearing with the cables on it. Girl you look great! Want to share details pattern, yarn etc?

  72. Knitting needles are now allowed on most U.S. air carriers. International travel depends on the carrier; at this point they tend to say “no,” but call them and ask ahead of time anyway. I’m pretty sure that British Air bans them, for example.
    If you go to the TSA’s website (I think it’s, there’s a list of items you can and cannot bring on planes. I always print out a copy and highlight the “knitting needles” line. They also now allow scissors with rounded ends, like the kind kids use in elementary school. I highlight that line, too.

  73. I absolutely agree with your recommendation of Red Bird Knits Romney Sock yarn. They are the nicest pair of socks I own and quite simply get better with age. I will knit more with this yarn.
    Except now you are all going to buy it out from under me aren’t you. Good for Redbird, bad for me.

  74. Mmmmm – my wet dream: getting home and finding my suitcase of dirty ratty clothes has been replaced with… beer, yarn and chocolate. It’d be like winning the lottery! Bet dude didn’t think so though.

  75. Had a fabulous time in Madison-so worth the personal day off and the four hour drive. Laughed so hard (non-knitters don’t believe me!?). Thanks so much! (Even though you wouldn’t be my best friend 🙂 .
    We had a run in with bambi on the road home-I think they just want to learn to knit-Thanks to our supreme observation abilities-(thank you knitting addition)-we’ve all survived to knit again.
    Thanks again for the fun-can’t wait for the next tour.

  76. I haven’t lived there in over 20 years, but Madison is still, and will always be, home for me. Glad to see my beloved town did right by your visit!

  77. Great babies – love the earnest stares. And, a picture of Dale Harriet, I read her comments on blogs and now I know what she looks like! The beers and squeaky cheese seem like a tasty meal. Keep up your strength.

  78. Adjusted age of -1 week? What on earth does that mean? *confused*
    But I LOVE the monster socks! So freakin’ adorable. Seriously. Nothing like it.

  79. Would you be offended to know I skimmed this whole post looking for Dale-Harriet? I didn’t think so. Madison rocks. 60 square miles surrounded by reality.

  80. “Adjusted age of -1 week” – my guess is “preemie, not yet reached 9 months from estimated conception.” (You grow, kid!)

  81. A bag full of beer, yarn and chocolate … why must you torture us? On my lunch hour, I had to content myself with a knitting magazine and chocolate as I have no knitting with me. The perpetual Manos awaits at home (both sleeves are done, now for the body)!
    I’d have loved to meet Dale-Harriet!

  82. Have you ever had trouble bringing knitting needles on a plane?
    This picture looks like metal needles – I thought we were restricted to wood needles. With all your flying – I thought you’d have some insight!!

  83. This comment has nothing to do with your current post…
    I’ve seen lots of photos of you in your “Must Have Cardigan”. Because of this, I bought the Patons booklet and am now on my second cardigan (made the hoodie, now am doing the aran pullover with a cardigan conversion – again thanks to your post!). This has been a great stash buster for me, I needed some nice sweaters, and have nice yarn, but didn’t want to spend the design time to make something up.
    We’re preparing to relocate to Saskatoon this summer, so I know I’ll need the sweaters when that happens. I’m preparing in other ways too; watching hockey & making gloves & mittens. I don’t need to worry about the beer though, I already like that.
    Wish this California girl luck…

  84. LOVE the monster socks! How cute are they? I hope Meg makes a pair. Did I set up a jinx with the baby smiling thing? dern =( I’m rather sad you didn’t photo document your ‘party in a bag’, lol, would have liked to see that. (and glad you got it back! scary)

  85. Beer, Yarn, & Chocolate? No he didn’t look — otherwise it would have taken longer to get the bag back … it would take too long to drink the beer and eat the chocolate.

  86. The babies are great in Madison! I love the no pictures please kiddo.
    If I ever open a bag that has beer and chocolate, I’ll give you a call and we can party.. what else would we need?

  87. Did you have time to grab a Knitty Burger at Knitty’s?! I’ve only been there once for a Bachlorette party, but the foods pretty good!

  88. They let you take knitting needles on the plane???? Special dispensation to fend off air-rage perhaps…

  89. Ok, so I just went on the tour website to see where you head after Indianapolis and wandered onto the philly page. Um…just so you know that you have hit the big time you are sharing the stage, the main stage mind you, with Bernadette Peters, Barbara Walters, a guy from the CIA and other big wigs. Can’t wait until they do the snobby, “So what kind of books do you write” schtick. Wish I could be there.
    (lisa from Indy)

  90. Beer and yarn in your suitcase? Ooh, you’re living dangerously. Reminds me of the time I came back from 3 weeks duty in Iceland with a suitcase full of nothing but Icelandic sweaters and white wine. Unfortunately, when I opened it up on this side of the pond, I discovered that a bottle had broken in transit and my sweaters were soaked with vino. For awhile, my family went around smelling like winos but we all looked great and were toasty, to boot!

  91. Party in a bag! Snort! I love the way you pack!! It was great seeing you at sock camp, and I hope you are able to get some well-deserved rest when the tour wraps up. I know this has to be incredibly hard on you but just know that all of us knitters who see you really, really, really enjoy the time you share with your incredibly funny wit and talent. Safe travels, Stephanie.

  92. I just want to thank you for all this blog time, face time, sharing you do. This book tour thing looks and sounds exhausting without adding blogging time to the deal, and I’d give a lot (part of my stash!) to get to one of your events, but it hasn’t happened yet. I realized as I was laughing at my first glimpse of Guido and the chortling babies just how cool it is to be able to be a fly on the wall here.
    So, thanks.

  93. Steph, Julie’s (Monty Python’s Holy Ale) friend here. You wanted to know what my sock yarn was and due to my headache I couldn’t think of it. It is Tess’ Designer Yarns
    I know you said it was better you didn’t know but I can’t keep good sock yarn from you.
    It was great to see you and glad you liked the land of beer and cheese!

  94. OMG, Dale-Harriet! Hi!
    That sock-yarn colorway is seriously pretty. Lying in wait is called for. (I *know* I just bought a bunch of sock yarn at CT. I was there at the time. And your point is?)

  95. Wow–seriously fun crowd (except the babies…maybe it was past bedtime?) And the Holy Grail Ale is HILARIOUS!!!
    Ooooh…party in a bag… throw in a little Bruce Springsteen, and I could raise the roof with that!!!

  96. Eighteen days until Philly. It’s a good thing Maryland Sheep and Wool is coming up to distract me.

  97. For the record I brought the snow. Came from the south (NC) to visit my cute brother and his very cute girlfriend and see the harlot. Eat and drank my way thru Madison. My favorite was the handmade dark chocolates. Oh and the beer. And the harlot.

  98. you are so generous with the postings
    philly sounds like a large event
    lots of authors to hold up your sock
    and you from past posting me thinks
    try to rest i know this how you
    make your liveing they used to
    call them traveling sales men
    in the old days 2008and still on the road

  99. Party in a bag!
    Is that the title of a harlot book in the making or what?
    Oh my gods! That’s the best laugh I’ve had all day!

  100. The babies were but napping. Wren and Isaak had quite the excited conversation comparing notes on the talk after they went through line. I think Wren actually jumped in the air.

  101. Party in a bag for knitters–I think it sounds like a great side business!!! Maybe you could make a wine/chocolate/yarn option as well for those of us who don’t like beer? And does wool go best with white or red wine?

  102. I was too busy giving you crap about your pantless preferences, that I forgot to tell you I had a great time! You’ve got great comic timing and the whole speech was more fun than a barrel of monkeys. Thanks!

  103. Party in a bag!!
    I tell you, thats all I’m packing for London!! :~)

  104. Stephanie, I cannot wait until you get to San Francisco. I was so sad when I thought the closest you were going to get was Washington. We’re travelling the Saturday after you are here, which is a miracle given that every other time we plan a trip, something awesome gets scheduled for the moment we leave.
    I have no babies for you (I raise tiny foster kittens, which are technically babies, but not people babies), but I may have great ball of yarn. Can’t wait to see you!

  105. Tony @ 10:59 — Wool goes best with white wine. The evidence soaks right in.

  106. This may be one of my favorite tour posts. I go weak in the knees at the mere mention of the PNW, but this post I got to put a face to dale-harriet, and that alone was worth the price of admission.
    Even though I am a cheesehead, I went to the StPaul event, because I am over on the west side of the state. It was fun to hear what was happening over yonder.
    For those who are wondering about knitting on the plane, I have had no problems with short dpns, and circulars. Anything over 8″ seems to freak out the security peeps. I usually knit with bamboo- really don’t know how you manage the metal ones, Steph.
    I like the idea that Stephanie is so famous now that she gets a special pass for her needles, since well, she IS the Yarn Harlot.

  107. HOLY CRAP!!! I am so freakin’ excited! I went to Knitting Night at my LYS last night and a friend told me that you are going to be in our neck of the woods (Northern California) on Saturday. How did I miss this? I was stuck fulfilling a family obligation (to my mother-in-law, of all people) when you were in Petaluma last year and was so bummed not to make it there. But come hell or high water, I’ll be there Saturday. Hurray for me – and for you for making a surprise stop in California!!

  108. Hey, Ms. Harlot:
    My local paper says you will be in San Mateo, California this Saturday, May 3, but this event isn’t listed on your tour schedule. What gives? (Forgive me if I missed something, I’ve been sidelined a bit by an injury so have only been skimming the blog entries–I was relying on your “Harlot on Tour” link on the sidebar.)

  109. P.S., do you drink the squirrel beer or feed it to the squirrels so they are too tipsy to undo your fleece-saving contraption?

  110. i’m wondering where my post is? sorry to see it got deleted. there was nothing “deletable” in it so i don’t know where i went..
    I lived in Madison for many years, and grew up nearby, so it’s dear to my heart too. It has changed a lot though and it’s sad that some of the old neighborhoods are gone. There is a great deal of history that has nothing to do with beer and cheese 🙂 Not many people remember that the statue on the Capitol bldg. used to be referred to as “Mrs. Rennebohm” and why..
    okay. that’s my speech 🙂

  111. Isn’t Madison fabulous? I would totally move there except for the pesky weather-not-like-SF-Bay-Area thing.
    See you Saturday!

  112. Stephanie, you were hilarious! Never had I laughed so hard. I wish you would do a podcast…your comedic timing and voice inflections are what really made everything come alive!
    And…you can count me among one of the knitters who most definitely was going to “go home and redouble my efforts”. School and work should NOT take away from my knitting time! And if it can make me smarter, well, that certainly won’t hurt. My knitting has gone with me wherever I go since I met you. I don’t always get to work on it, but I have it just in case…

  113. Say it, Stephanie– SANTA BARBARA, in the SOCK-SHAPED STATE (california)!
    Then (please?) DO IT 🙂 Dale-Harriet’s (ask her!) Evil Twin (that would be me) lives here and is dying to see you!
    Sockitudinally, Marjorie (aka Dale’s ET)

  114. wow. i never even knew you’d be there. my sister lives in madison.
    i *must get* a button like dale-harriet’s. that’s her name, right? wearing the button with the red/white/blue sheep? perfect!
    and you are totally right about the squeakiness of cheese curds. i thought i was the only one who described them like that.

  115. So I was reading back through your blog entries and I discovered that ON THE VERY DAY that I took a mental health day home from school and read one of your books and replenished my mental health with it and was like, this lady is super awesome and I ought to read more of her books and her blog and stuff you were in town, and so if I had gone to your website that same day I could have discovered that I could have replenished my mental health even more by jumping on the bus and hearing you talk . . . ah well. Maybe someday you’ll come back and by then I will have gone away to college and be too old to count as a “young knitter”.

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