Thursday, June 01, 2006

O Won't you be my neighbor?/The Dye Party 

"Hey, neighbor, I'm trying to listen to NPR, could you not rev your engine? Please?"

What kind of a wussy request is that?


The dyeing party was treated to my across-the-street neighbors' displays of manliness--tinkering with their little engines to make 'em sound bigger and look shinier.

I'm only sorry you guys missed my next-door neighbor's skimpy-bikini clad leafblower operation on Sunday. Drink in one hand, limpwristed swinging of loudly whining leafblower, booty jiggling for a couple hours, only pausing to refresh her drink.
I need a spy camera.


The first part of this post, I just talk about my neighborhood. Scroll down to The Dye Party to get to the interesting bit.

I put headphones on and PropertyOwner'sSon-in-Law's-Orange-Bonco is still drowning it out. This is where podcasts come in and save lives because if I wasn't able to pause, go back and replay, I would probably beat him to death with his own cracked muffler. He likes to tinker, rev it, then do a very fast circuit through our generally quiet residential neighborhood, and spread the love. I'm sure the person whose car alarm he keeps setting off in his sonic wake is loving him too. Being incredibly manly, he sustains this pattern for six hours or more.

The thing is, I don't want to call the cops--I've complained about La Mesa's idiotic and nonsensical regulations before. Our sound regs are so sensitive people apparently can't even legally operate a lawnmower (max db level for ANYTIME is 70db) and this provides 90 db as a lawnmower's level. They define an "ambient base level" and consider things above it as noise violations. Even though they have a landscaping specific amendment to their regs La Mesa doesn't let the realities of the equipment interfere, so it's a reg that essentially reiterates what is said elsewhere and amends nothing.

But hey, I hate lawnmowers too.

I do realise though that if we all had to use pushmowers and grass shears instead of lawnmowers and weedwhackers then...well, it would be the end of lawns as we know it. Not neccesarily a bad thing actually, considering we live in high desert. Still, I'm saying I don't begrudge my neighbor's their expensive landscaping follies.

And while I don't have a decibel meter, I'd love to borrow one, because I bet you this guy's rig is in the 110-130 range. Partner this with loud parties with underage drinkers (okay, this, I'm guessing. I'm sure that there are young women out there older than 21 who screech out, "I'm going ustairs to pee--who wants to f&ck me!?!?!" at 1 in the morning, but I dunno, it just seems an awfully young behavior) and I'm feeling like an old woman. On the one hand, I think my neighbors are highly amusing, but when I can't listen to Wait, Wait Don't Tell Me... without having to pause, wait for cessation of racket, rewind, replay, repeat, several times within the less than an hour long program, I get a little ticky. Hence, I feel like an old woman, bitching about those demmed whippersnappers and their loud trucks and drunken "friends"...I still don't want this to be a neighborhood were we call the cops on each other--except in the case of the guy down the street who sometimes knocks his wife around. Screw that guy.

Okay, one more thing about my neighborhood. So when people are leaving the dye party, I notice that there's a drawstring sunglasses bag laying on the sidewalk. Grace opened it carefully with sticks (see! this is how my neighborhood makes people feel, yikes! but really, we are safe and good, I swear! I haven't used my housekey for almost a year because we never lock our doors, really!) and found a stone inside. Huh. Whu? Nick clued me in--it's to smash car windows with when breaking into cars. Oh, fan-tastic that that was sitting on the sidewalk in front of our house. Where the hell did it come from?

Alrighty, enough of the ravings of the neighborhood grouch...

The Dye Party

On Saturday, Heidi, Nancy, Hilari, Cristina, Yoly (currently sans blog that I know of, who works with Nancy) and her step-daughter Grace, Jessica, and Susan all came over to take some perfectly good yarn and fiber and make it beeeeeyouteeeefull.

Cristina has a great picture set on flickr of the stuff going on, and Susan has some good pics in her post here too. Bella is aptly named, a total cutie patootie, very smart and well-behaved (and when she wasn't well behaved [at some point she had Nancy's Lady Eleanor in her adorable grip and was attacking it adorably because the Lady E is in its own way irresistible and she could probably smell the fluffy bunny in its korchoran soul] was still unbelievably adorable, a veritable black hole of adorableness [or is she a red dwarf? being a vizla and all...]).
Anyway, I forgot to take pics so it was all about the beautifully colored aftermath for me.

[note: The Noisy Orange Bronco in the background]

I'm hoping everybody had a good time, I loved the colors people came out with.

Check out Hilari's terracotta fabooolussness--it matches our windchimes from Nicaragua!:

I wasn't quite sure how to handle the logistics of everything; I set up tables on the deck and we mixed dye solutions at the sink. I showed the basics of making a strong dye concetrate base to mix other colors from, we had a mixing table, an undyed yarn table, and a painting table. The only rule was: don't get dye on anything but your own stuff. As far as I know, we did well on that. People brought lots of fun stuff to dye and crockpots, dust masks, and mixing bottles and a Vizla puppy and Nancy brought vinyl gloves for the people with manhands. ;P

When we do it again, we'll have two painting tables.

We rode Cristina a little for her methodical by the book nature (okay, maybe more than a little, she approached dyeing like Deb Menz's redheaded lovechild) and I acted as counterpoint by slopping dyes all over the place like a spaaz.

I took pics of all the dyed yarn on the towel that was under the bottles on the mixing table--I really like all the colors and the resist pattern of the table top on it...so I'm easily amused by pretty colors...

I dyed some Lincoln locks, a pound of mohair/silk (70/30) worsted weight yarn, a skein of 100% bombyx silk and some superwash yarns. I was feeling in a blue, purple, green, red mood...

I love dyeing. I don't know what to call these colorways, but there's something about them that seems so familiar. There are lighter, less saturated pieces in the skeins and areas where the colors mingle and I think they are beautiful. So I'm happy with my results. ;)

I had presoaked a fair amount of stuff and set it out on the table and Yoly's stepdaughter Grace was a guest artist for Lanas de Libélula--she painted a hank of superwash and a hank of silk.

Great work, eh? Preteen labor is where it's at! :P Water colors and fall leaves...

And later I dyed my presoak leftovers:


I haven't been really feeling the blogging lately...I think this blog may be moving, changing...I'm not thinking of killing it. I can't do that until after I've actually spun aand knit the Rogue.


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