Friday, September 28, 2007

The Goings On

After finishing the yoga bag, I have been kind of feeling blah about knitting. Up until the final stitches, I was all excited about finishing because I have 3 more projects in my head that needs to be done. Well, technically 4. I have yet to make the shoulder/book bag pattern from the Garns Studio for myself. I should line the Learn-to-Crochet bag. The next 2 projects are would-be gifts for bf and roommate. Bf is gonna get an earflap hat using the Swell pattern on Knitty. For roommate I am doing a custom headband with my first attempt at stranded colorwork and knitting elastic to create a logo of some sort on a solid background. The idea was to pick a simple 8 bit video game character for the logo but because I haven't picked this yet and because I planned on buying the new extremely cheap ($1.99 US!!! Duuude!) sport weight peruvian highland wool on Knitpicks, I have no new yarn to work with.

I was thinking 8-bit Link would be pretty cool, he would match roommate's snowboard jacket in brown & white. On second thought, after going off on a tangeant and looking up more classic video game sprites, Link probably isn't the best. Here're a bunch that could be interesting but with a simple enough color scheme on a solid dark brown or blue background. Gotta decide tonight so I can order the yarn.

So the reason I felt blah was because I had to go back to my In-betweeny Afghan for a bit to tide me over. Except it just kind of bored me so I decided to start working out again instead which is good but now I haven't knit in like 4 days and it doesn't feel right. I have to knit tonight. I MUST!

Friday, September 21, 2007

What is this thing I hear?

Okay, so from my daily blog crawling, I've heard mention of this Ravelry thing which up until today, I just thought was a big members only site with lots of patterns. As it turns out, it is that, a part of it anyways, but it is so much more. It is still in its beta testing phase because honestly, frecklegirl and her husband are righteously ambitious about this whole Knitting/Crochet online community. I mean this thing is revolutionary! Who in the world would've thought to create something on this scale for a bunch of crafters? But you know what? These crafty "weirdos" are coming out in full force, we will not be silenced and I think this Ravelry is finally carving out a territory online for all the yarn-hos to hang out, a place to congregate. Ravelry is a unified nation for the weaving arts and the scenery here looks good!
I signed up to be on the waiting list just now. I checked about 15 minutes ago. I had 4 people behind me then.
I checked again just now, there are now 10 people signed up after me. While the rate of new users may not be as high as many popular social networks, for a niche community, I'd say as long as the numbers are jumping up in triple digits a day, that's pretty darn good.

Anyways, here're my 2 finished projects since the last finished projects post: (Now what do I knit?)

Monday, September 17, 2007

Cable Clutch well received!

YAY!!! The secret project Cable Clutch finally arrived in the UK (sent only Friday afternoon)! Yahoo! My friend emailed me and said she loved it and the homemade chocolate chip cookies I made. Ooh, I feel good. I love knitting! :) So satisfying.

I guess the weekend wasn't a complete waste...

Due to some semi-unknown complication, the bf has decided not to speak to me since Friday afternoon. Sure, the 3 of us (roommate included) got into yet another one of the heated discussions that he starts. The kind where he is just "stating an observation" or "being the devil's advocate", where he is not seeking agreement, merely stating his "generalizations" about the world based on his personal (and may I add very special and not at all the norm) experience. Sure that all sounds pretty valid, except when you say something, he talks over you, if you disagree he keeps repeating what he says to drown you out. Even when you are not trying to disagree, when you try to add a word in to rationalize or give reason to his observations, he just says no that's not true, and when he goes all over the map on his statements and you let him know that's not what he originally stated. He basically reacts with, no don't put words in my mouth, I know what I said. So there really is no discussion or any point to any of it.

Sure, maybe we shouldn't have gotten sucked into yet another of these fool discussions of his and I shouldn't have gotten fed up in the end and said to roommate, "Dude just don't bother". When bf asked "Why? We are just having an open discussion." I replied with "Because it's not." I was definitely flustered from participating in that tiring discussion on a Friday afternoon and when all was done, bf tossed a deflated football to me to get my attention. I tossed it back, not a very good throw. I stated, "I suck." Maybe he thought I said he sucked so he just said, "Fine. Fuck you." From that point on around 6:30pm on Friday, he has not said a word to me except to tell me to fuck off and stop staring at him.

I spent half the weekend bawling my eyes out again and going absolutely nuts banging my head on the floor. I felt like shit and I just don't get it? How am I supposed to deal with that? So finally after trying maybe twice a day to talk to him. I'd just say "Are you gonna talk to me now?" or "Are you done being mad?" but ya know, it's the usual complete lack of acknowledgement that I even exist. Not a head turn or nod in my direction, just complete indifference. That hurt me a lot the first 2 nights and it has hurt me so much in the past that it drove me to scary places in my head and almost doing things I would very much have regretted, to him and to myself.

After Saturday night I just stopped crying. If I was gonna survive this type of BS another time I just have to stop reacting and caring. The only danger with that is when I stopped caring before it led to a lot of other shit. But ya know, he knows about this from what I've told him before, if he actually listened. If he still chooses to act like this, there's not much I can do. In the end I lose anyways, I have absolutely nothing because I pretty much gave up everything to give this a go. I wanted to build a more solid foundation first before I ventured into other things. So I'd pretty much have to start my life from scratch. Maybe that'll be a good thing. If we break up again someday I have to assume it's for the last time and I guess I'll just move to a different country. The thought of us breaking up hasn't entered my mind in a long time because I decided no matter what happened, I will stick it out. They are just complications and obstacles that we have to go through together.

However, it becomes difficult when I quantify the type of hurdles we have to jump through. There are those that he has on his own, which I may not know about because he isn't telling me. That one problem actually makes it an obstacle for both of us. There are my own problems with the world which I try my best to share. There are the problems that couples genuinely have to face together and then there're the things WE hurl at each other. Sometimes I feel like he throws a hell of a lot more curveballs at me than I do him. Half the time it seems to be purely for his entertainment, which really kills me. The other half of the time is split up between him "testing" me for loyalty or some other BS, and then him acting like a complete a**hole. I just feel like I've put myself in a position where I have a hell of a lot more to lose. Actually it kind of seems like I put myself in that position a lot.

Anyways, so in that sense the weekend was a complete waste of time but the other half of the time when I wasn't crying, I was knitting up my yoga mat bag. To be honest, it helped keep me sane. I am pretty happy about the way it looks. It's about 2/3 done right now, hopefully the bag body will be finished tonight except for the straps. The bottom is a little bit wonky because I totally improvised and increased too many times in the round so instead of just a flat circle like I had hoped, it's kinda ripply. Also, because my increases weren't that even, there are holes and lumps, but whatever it's on the bottom! Anyways, a picture will be posted after tonight.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Film Festival Insanity

I would like to rant for a moment about the Toronto International Film Festival. In years past, during the first year of University, during my days when I aspired to be a filmmaker, to learn and meet like-minded people, I attended the TIFF. I volunteered at the TIFF. In truth I only volunteered for one year and I attended screenings for several but overall, despite the long lineups to get tickets and my constantly forgetting to get advanced tix, the festival experience has always been enjoyable and I considered it a healthy place for films, filmmakers and film-goers alike to be.

I have made no effort to attend the festival for the past 3 years. The reason, mostly because I was focused on trying to work in the film industry and admittedly I became a little jaded. There were films by people I knew that got into the festival and I was happy they were made, happy they got some acknowledgment but did not at all believe they deserved as much "attention" as they did. Being accepted in one prestigious festival becomes a stepping stone to getting accepted in other festivals world-wide. Understandable. It gains the movie a greater world-wide audience. Great! Maybe it is just jealousy but the process is quite unjust. A lot of this world obviously has to do with creatively promoting yourself and the film. Fine! But that is not my biggest beef.

3 years after my hiatus from film festival attendance, I thought I would check it out, consider some films and go to a few screenings this year. In fact, the movie I worked on last year is screening this Tuesday. I would love to see it even if I have doubts on its final outcome. I know it's a little late to get prime movie tickets but whatever, I just wanted a taste of something new, which is a huge part of what the festival experience should be, in my humble opinion. First off, festival organizers decided to go with their own domain this year, instead of under the old Bell domain. That is a royal fuck up! That's 1! 2: The festival has gotten so big, the site's traffic is huge and the few nights before festival began, the site was completely non-functional. 3: Finally the site is up and running and how much are they charging for a single movie? Not a gala, just a good old run-of-the-mill movie. $19.34!!! Prices do not include GST, building fund fee and service charges.

Jesus! What is happening to this world!?!?! Who cares if there are more celebrities and stars coming into the festival?! I think it's great if they come but the movie-goer should not be paying the tab! It's a big schmooz fest anyways, they can afford to come promote their movies! They can afford the luxuries. The studios, sponsors & advertisers can afford all this! Why in the hell are WE paying $20 bucks for a movie? Not to mention the hassle of trying to get downtown during festival season, parking, the markups on services & having to tolerate the sheer stupidity & insanity that happens at this time?

I think it is great that the Toronto International Film Festival is a big tourist attraction, that it marks Toronto & Canada as an important capital in film making. All that is wonderful in helping promote Canada's up and coming film makers & new studios, etc. But like other aspects of this business that our country seems to always struggle with, we have to stop catering strictly to the greed & glitz aspects, and find more balance and space for the people who just want a refreshing look at movies they will never get to see otherwise. I am sorry but I am NOT paying $20 dollars to see something I'm not really sure I would like. It doesn't guarantee me a glimpse of the back of Brad Pitt's head, it doesn't even guarantee me that I will enjoy whatever movie I bought the ticket for. The only thing I wanted was for something new. For the price of a regular movie ticket, yeah I might experiment and see a few but not for 20 bucks.

Call me a cheapskate but this is not the way it should be! As blasphemous as this will sound to all my filmmaker friends, I think people should boycott this fucking film festival and force the organizers to get it back to the way it was. The TIFF organizing committee can shove their golden tickets up their ass!

Friday, September 7, 2007

Soon to be fears

Two days ago, while searching online for a lacey/meshy stitch pattern to work into the upcoming Yoga mat bag project, I stumbled upon another craft blog called Craft Lover by Lillian, who maintains 2 other blogs in Chinese: 普通人的廚房 & 普通人的空間. Her Chinese nickname is 普通人, literally meaning regular person.

I started reading 普通人的空間 to brush up on my Chinese reading skills and to check out Lillian's work. There's a lot there about her experiences as a new mother of a 2 month old baby girl. Despite my struggle to read her Chinese posts, I was moved by her sincere but mixed up expressions of weariness, sadness & happiness from the new baby-related happenings. She is very grateful for the support from her family, friends & readers and I think it is so wonderful. She is definitely one of the lucky ones amongst the many women in the world who may not receive a fraction of the love she gets during such a time in life. Yet, the emotions she feels are still so raw & real, NOT because she isn't "tough" enough or that she's a crybaby. Those feelings just are. The best a person could do is have hope, thank god and live another day.

Then...I find myself terrified of the day when I become pregnant. Will I be as gracious as Lillian? Certainly I will be lucky enough to have similar support that she receives from friends and family but even with that, I honestly don't think I can withstand the pain, the stress and the responsibility. I always figured that when the day comes, I will prepare as much as I can and just do my best. I am sure that's what most people try to do but it scares the hell out of me.

As I read Lillian's blog at work, I have momentary visions/feelings of me experiencing the first pains from labor, as it becomes more intense, how much will it hurt? I think about whether my husband/bf will be there to hold my hand when I am in the delivery room trying with all my might to push our baby into the world, in the most pain I will probably ever know. Will I be there, alone? In a room full of strangers? What about the months before birth as our baby grows inside me? What would it be like? I know this is superficial but how will it feel to have my body become unrecognizable? Would I feel like an alien inside a body that isn't mine? I feel certain that I will have post-partum depression and that only I will be there to pull myself out of it, IF I pull myself out.

I used to think people should only become pregnant when they are "ready" but I realize that no one truly knows when that will be. Sometimes it has to happen and then you change and I accept that. I just wonder if I will be... This October I will be 26, not that I am in any way "ready" to have a baby now but the thought certainly brushes my mind more often these days.

It's kind of crazy to think of the women out there, who want a baby of their own so much. A maternal longing so strong that they would reach out anywhere to look for that "seed" of hope. What is it about a baby? Is it just longing for attachment, a culmination of all the love you have to offer? To the world, to your lover? To the baby?

As I sat, staring, reading at the office, I felt my heartbeat racing, panicking now for the panic I would possibly feel later on in life. I panicked today for those moments in the future when I would be freaking out in anticipation of going into labor, of going to the hospital, of giving birth. My eyes welled up and tears rolled down my cheeks. I had to turn away to make sure nobody saw.

Lillian, if you read this: I honestly love reading about your experiences. It is so beautiful but it brings out my emotions too well.