Listening to: New Teller – Jonathan Richman & the Modern Lovers

I have a knitting question, to which I should really just look up the answer myself, but anyway: if I want to block a hat to make it a little bit bigger, do I just do it flat? Will that create weird side creases? I don’t know what else I’m expecting – some sort of papier maché hat-blocking solution? Should I just find someone with a bigger head who wouldn’t mind wearing it for a bit? The first Saartje’s Noro Hat I knit is completely lovely and fits nicely, but I don’t like it quite as much as the second one, which had five extra stitches and is that little bit roomier.

Today: Shepherd’s Bush (I’ve missed it! I got a bit nostalgic for that first London house), a haircut (I look so weird with my hair blow-dried straight – there will be no pictures) and sunshine (I had to take my coat off on the walk home!).


Listening to: The Rest – The Pines

Oh, the downside for all of you is that I have nothing better to do than blog about my days during half-term.

I’m quite into this whole walking thing, and after faffing around for most of the day I took myself off to Sheen this afternoon (I did not see Daniel Craig or Rob Brydon – I did see someone who looked a lot like Richard Ashcroft from the Verve in my street the other day, though), which is another one of my neighbouring suburbs by the river. It has the best op shops! They’re cheap but stocked with the spoils of the quite wealthy, which is a rare thing in London charity shops. (The Octavia Foundation one in Barnes is full of boring designer rubbish and will charge you twenty pounds* for a pilly jacket.) I scored a long blue A-line corduroy skirt (with pockets!) for four pounds, which was pleasing (one of those pristine, perfectly pressed vintage finds), and will be back to think about a bunch of Japanese stoneware plates.

I also discovered Mortlake Cemetery, which almost made me get lost because it spans both sides of the street and I was halfway to Kew before I realised that was not where I meant to be. I was going to say it was a bit dull (or a bit too new, anyway), but maybe I was in the wrong spot – apparently, Charles Dickens’s son is buried there, along with a bunch of other “notable” people.

It snowed for a minute, which is still thrilling. (Oh, but I wish it would settle! I haven’t yet built a snowperson.)

This evening I will be watching episode 4 of Battlestar Galactica (“Act of Contrition”). It’s kind of growing on me.

*I changed my keyboard settings back to Australian (otherwise the ” would be above the 2 and the hash key would be where the \ is…madness, I tell you) and it’s a bugger doing the whole £ thing.

Listening to: Samantha Secret Agent – The All-Girl Summer Fun Band

My new favourite thing is the BBC Pronunciation Unit’s brief but fabulous blog, and the BBC Editors’ blogs in general.

Also, three Guardian articles I have read today:

  • Antony and the Johnsons light up 2009I am a Bird Now didn’t set my world on fire, but I thought Antony’s performance of If It Be Your Will in I’m Your Man was incredibly beautiful. I like him.
  • The woman with a tiny carbon footprint – The Joan Pick article mentioned by Antony Hegarty above. I like her, too.
  • ‘What happens in war happens’ – Emma Brockes’s interview with Lynndie England. Not such a big fan of hers, but it’s an interesting article nonetheless. Who is this person?
  • I am having a lovely day, hanging out washing, sitting in the backyard reading Kate Lopresti’s Constant Rider zine, eating bits and pieces from the garden (our blueberry bush is producing a handful of fruit or so every day, and our nectarines are almost ripe and earlier I had a cherry tomato), popping inside to skip a song on the iPod and read something on the internet. It’s very relaxing.

    My uncle and his partner were staying here for the past week or so, and I actually quite enjoyed their being here for the most part, but it’s nice to have the house to myself again. (My mum came back from Bali and went straight to Tasmania for a week.)

    Listening to: The Devil – PJ Harvey

    I took myself out for lunch today (Thea Tea House, Gawler Place), and had a lovely afternoon flitting around the shops. I had a Country Road voucher, so I bought a red cotton cardigan and then headed over to the button shop in Regent Arcade (or is it Adelaide Arcade?) to get some more interesting buttons (clear dark blue glittery plastic). Buttons are expensive!

    I also bought White Chalk by PJ Harvey – I like it, and it’s nice and piano-y and pretty, but it’s also a little bit boring. I like PJ Harvey immensely (Dry and Rid of Me are two of the most exciting albums I’ve ever heard, and I like the subsequent stuff well enough), but she’s kind of singing about nothing these days. It’s all ether and oak trees and darkness and blah, blah, blah, and the tunes kind of meander quietly and then stop. Nothing grabs you like “Lick my legs, I’m on fire” or fallen women in dancing costumes or big bone-shaking winds, but – whatever. This is still okay.

    I was going to get something for dinner from Sushi Train in Rundle Street, but they didn’t have anything vegetarian left by 4.00 pm (I have developed a real thing for sundried tomato sushi lately, and they do other nice fillings, too), so I bought some Haigh’s dark chocolate peppermint pastilles instead (and made steamed vegetables and quinoa for dinner when I got home). I love having this week off between jobs (I hope the weather remains this deliciously cool! I thought the heatwave would never end). I have about seven knitting projects on the go, and am working my way through Big Love and the second season of Weeds on DVD. I’m still trying to settle on something to read – I pared that other reading list down to The night watch by Sergei Lukyanenko, but then I had to return it to the library before I got to the end and I can’t quite bring myself to start anything else yet. I have Elizabeth Taylor’s The devastating boys on standby for bus stops, etc.

    I have been spending a ridiculous amount of time on Ravelry lately – more time than I’ve actually spent knitting. The pattern browser is so addictive! I am trying to stay away from the yarn browser, because that’s just madness.

    I hope you are all well!