Saturday, 23 September 2006

Epiphany

Had an appointment with my therapist last night. That's my therapist Janet, not the one Pooch and I go to together. The crux of it is this...... (sit up straight folks, this is the big one.)

I get depressed because I withdraw from emotional situations and don't open up to people. I won't let people look after me or show emotion to me because it freaks me out. I avoid any situation that couold get emotional.

Now when I say emotional I don't mean *any* emotion. There's a sliding scale. Emotions I can't stand are things like compassion and sympathy that is being directed towards me. I'm fine doling it out to others but witnessing others receiving it or god forbid it coming my way is a big no no. There are other emotions as well but those are the obvious ones. So anyway. This explains a whole heap of stuff. The next steps are to
  1. Recognise how I have avoided emotion in the past.
  2. Recognise the situations I avoid in order not to have to be uncomfortable
  3. Start exposing myself to these situations.

That's going to be the hard part because it literally makes my skin crawl when I feel what are really perfectly normal things. If you are talking to me and you see me wrinkle my nose I'm either about to sneeze or the skin on my face is (almost) literally trying to move to the back of my head. It is quite uncanny.

SOOooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo.....................

Enough of all that. Let's just say things are looking up and for the first time I really feel like there might be some tiny pinprick of light far away there in the distance at the end of the tunnel.

Friday, 22 September 2006

Il pleut

Beaucoup or however you spell it. Basically it's wet in london. And it matches my mood because I'm well pissed off. And I am trying to work out whether this is one of those animal, vegetable or mental type annoyances.

It is true that aspects of work are quite trying at the moment and I have a presentation to 1/3 staff this afternoon where most of them are only there for the cake and the rest are worried, confused and therefore not far off irritable themselves. So this is fair reason for being moody. This definitely counts as vegetable.

It is also true that I have 'got the builders in' and other such dumb arse phrases men use for women having periods. This then could be an animal cause.

This brings us to the mental. I have a postcard that says something pithy like 'I used to be sane but the effort drove me mad'. When, dudes, do I get a fricking break from effort? I am now sorely tempted just to go all out there and sit at my desk naked smoking a haddock like a cigar. Or perhaps a little torrets (you know what I mean, I just can't spell it). How about if I just sat here and shrieked 'fuck, shit, bollocks' every 30 seconds. Is that how people who develop these little quirks start out? Are they one day just fed up with the urge not to strangle their fellow tube traveller and so they start taking their tights off on the tube before this develops into a fully fledged naked-haddock-smoker type manifestation? Because, basically, I have to keep telling myself it's just PMT. Now, do 'normal' people have to sit around reminding themselves they're not insane all the time? What if I stopped telling myself this. Would that mean that I then went mad? In which case surely that means I'm mad already and it's actually slightly insane to be pretending not to be.

I was having an early morning conversation with a colleague 2 days ago and he started talking about euthanasia or something and I pointed out I wasn't the best person to ask. He had forgotten my little holiday in the madhouse a couple of years ago and was shocked to hear I was a depressive. "But Alex, " he said. "You are so young and you have so much going for you. There's no reason to be depressed." Is there perhaps anyone in the world who when they think about this thinks that it genuinely helps to say that. When that is said this is what I hear: "But Alex, there's no reason to be depressed. Stop being so self-indulgent and think about all the people in the world who are actually having a bad time. And by the way the fact that you actually are suicidal really underlines that you are sick. Sick. And doomed." But I know he meant well and was trying to cheer me up.

Anyway - no one is to leave any comments about all this. Let's just pretend it didn't happen.

In OTHER news, sane news, the adult surprise jacket is going well. I must have all of about 2 inches on the needles now. I do remember thinking about doubling the yarn and doing it at least DK but no, I've started in 4-ply so I'll finish by god. It is very relaxing to do - all that endless garter stitch, but the yarn is a bit splitty so it does take a little bit of attention to make sure I've got all of it when I go to wrap a stitch.

I got my Magic Yarn Ball yesterday from the swap bot spot. This is basically a ball of wool which has been unwound and then rewound but with lots of cool little things inside. Mine was AWESOME! I have forgotten the camera or you'd have a chance to share. I think I will include a description inside the second edition of PtbC.

Zines still available BUT you MUST MUST MUST send me your postal address. leaving a comment is no good. I need your postal address to post it to. You can email this to me at littlelixieathotmaildotcom and a copy will be in your postbox a few days later.

I have to end there as I have to go and set up for this dumbarse presentation. Still no internet at home so no more from me for this week. Have a good one peeps.

Wednesday, 20 September 2006

White collar crime

I tried, right. I tried to go to Rymans and use their photocopier and what happens? It costs me 80p in jams and then after i ask the staff which way round to put the paper it copies twice on the same side of the paper I'm using. That's a fiver I'll never see again. Anyway... I am now forced to abuse the office facilities and also to stay late tonight so no one sees me doing it. I guess if I were to try and rationalise this I would say something along the lines of unpaid overtime in exchange for use of copier but in all likelihood I'll be on swapbot so it doesn't really work.

Anyone who wants a copy of the zine leave a comment but INCLUDE YOUR ADDRESS! I need to know where to post these stolen copies.

On a swapbot theme I am now well into ATCs and have been flinging them around the world. I posted about a squillion parcels yesterday so look out those of you who have me as a swap partner. One of the things I sent was this which I am really in two minds about.
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It's a brooch incase anyone was wondering. Yeah I know. I wonder if it would have been better with just 4 petals.

Doing a round up I have finished the first pair of socks made with the divine sock hop sock yarn. I found you can do a pair out of just one skein which wasn't what the website said but I won't cry about it. It does mean there might be some skeins available if anyone is interested. I'll let you know when and which though once I've finished my xmas presents.
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(Note half-arsed cable attempt up centre front.)

So does anyone remember this?
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This ugly little booger was a baby jumper started approx 9 months ago for darling Yoshimi who is now about 9 months and wouldn't fit into this if you steam boiled her for half an hour. It's also quite ugly. I can see it flying towards the dulani project or whatever it's called. Is it possible there are hundreds of kids running round war torn, far-flung places wearing ugly jumpers? Poor little buggers - I know it wouldn't matter to them what the stuff looked like as long as it was warm.

On the subject of knitting (which strangely, this being a knitting blog, I do seem to be talking about) I have been reading deeply and one might say obsessively of my new Elizabeth Zimmermann (or 'The Mann' as I am going to refer to her from now on) books. I'm on 'knitting around' which gives a different pattern for each month. I keep getting these urges to pledge to knitting each of these garments in the order given. And all those in The Mann's "Opinionated Knitter". The patters are just sublime and so easy to adapt. Lots are based on a percentage system so it doesn't even matter what your guage is as long as you know what it is. What a dude. The reason I bring this up here is because it has already occurred to the byrne brain that baby jumpers knit up faster than adult (dur) and still give you a chance to try out the techniques she uses. So watch this space.

Yeah, probably won't come to anything but I'm thinking about it a lot.

Monday, 18 September 2006

Catch up round up thing

The first edition of the only UK crafty zine I know about is out and available (but tell me if you know of others as I want to read them!). I have already emailed a couple of you for addresses as this is one of the old-school paper varieties and not some downloadable didgery. The first edition is strictly limited to 50 copies which have a hand-stitched binding and is FREE! Whoopie for ‘free’! In return all you have to do is email me and let me know what you thought of it and what changes should be made. Be constructive in your criticism but make sure you’re honest.

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I’ve been away all this time taking a week of very hard earned leave from work which has meant no internet for all that time. How did I survive? Well, actually it was hell! Not only did I have no access to blogging but also no email! So there has been loads going on that I have only just heard about. One thing is that we should all be sending much love to Woolly Wormhead at the moment as she has had a bit of a set-back. I’m hoping it will be a set forward though with her fibre business but I know how something like this can herald the darkness so big hugs going her way.

Having been away means there is a lot to catch up on chez byrne. I did manage to get a little shopping done while I was away. How is it that in London you, until recently, had just 2 knitting shops, 2 bead shops and 1 stamping shop within zone 1. Then you go to Penzance and believe me when I say – this place is small. This place is so small you can walk from one end of the town to the other in 10 minutes. And that’s at my pace. Pooch could do it in 5 and Joe in about 3. And in this tiny town there were…. 2 knitting shops, 1 beadshop, 1 papercraft extravaganza and 3 other shops that had floors or sizeable sections given over to all things crafty. St Ives had a knitting shop and that is even smaller. There must be some sort of inverse square law to do with shops per square millimetre or something like that. Let me just practice my physics and whip up a small graph in excel…

One of the knitting shops in Penzance was one some of you will have seen mentioned in Vogue and other mags called “KnitWits”. This is it.
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It’s not all good though. They made me, right. They MADE ME. I came out with 6 balls of this stuff.
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It is SWTC Karaoke and DAMN it’s good. Fortunately they only had 6 balls otherwise I would have been in real trouble. I got a few other little bits and pieces including a fairisle thimble that helps you keep the colours separate without needing to keep dropping one and picking up another. Pretty nifty. While I was away I also popped into Taunton and saw my muvver. On top of the usual filial joy this brings it also brought 3 Elizabeth Zimmemann books. Man, that woman is gold. I am half way through the Opinionated Knitter and it is bliss to read.
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I also got a classic fairisle patterns book and a few other crafty jems in a second-hand place in St Ives.
While away I managed to gather up an impressive pile of post because of all the swaps I've been doping on Swapbot. Look at these envelopes:
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I thought my efforts were quite good til I saw the trouble people go to on just the envelopes. Nevermind what's inside! I have now got some lovely ATCs though and some good ideas on what to do for xmas presents so I am very happy.

I think that is just about all people have the strength to read so I’ll leave it there. Except that I did have a little hair adventure. First I had a load lopped off then I did a home dye job. The eventual outcome was fortunately not comic but I did enjoy trying out various hairstyles, such as this one, along the way!
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I almost forgot. I managed to put my back out again while I was away – too much rucksack carrying I suspect. It wasn’t as bad as last time but is taking ages to recover. It has meant I wasn’t able to do the sponsored walk on Saturday and I know it doesn’t sound like me to be bummered about missing exercise but I actually am really annoyed I missed this. Some people had sponsored me and so I feel like a bit of a woos. But we did sign up as a team (the NWKTog Group) and so the others bravely walked for me and for the Children’s Society. You can still sponsor the team here. Just £1 will count.
OK, all together.....
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*sigh*
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