A thingymajig out of the blue

I was going through some sewing notions that a friend gave me when I found this:

Apparently it was a thing in the ’80s (never saw one then) and is now “vintage.” ’Scuse you, internet. The ’80s was just 4 years ago.

I was googling it to find out about it when I came across Galen Leather and its catalog of wonderful and esoteric things! You know how much I love good craftsmanship. And then, then … I saw this:


But it’s a frivolity and we are in a position to eschew frivolities at the moment.

Still … my birthday’s coming up and I wanted to give Dude a heads-up as to something he could get me relatively inexpensively (I thought) that I really wanted. What I didn’t know was that it was coming from Turkey (shipping ain’t cheap)!

Anyhoo, he didn’t wait for my birthday (silly man 🤪) and so this happened:

The craftsmanship at every level is exquisite. The box is heavy, tidy kraft. The logo is lovely. The pouch that the coffee and tea packets come in is fine cloth. The envelope that the protractor is in is heavy embossed cardstock (almost chipboard). Everything about this is lovely and perfect.

Protractor: 10/10 cannot regret frivolousness

Husband: 10/10 would marry again

I was wrong.

I got a Kindle.

I know. Go ahead and laugh or faint or whatever. I’ll wait until you’ve got yourself back together again.

Long story told in bullet-point lists:

  • Saw a Sony at Target. The screen looked like a dot matrix printer (aka like crap). I decided eInk was not for me.
  • Amazon pulled some crappy things, which confirmed my opinion of crap.
  • My mother-in-law got a Kindle for Christmas and I fondled it. It didn’t look anything like the Sony at Target.
  • I couldn’t stop thinking about my MIL’s Kindle.
  • I had an increasing need to see what my formatting looked like on the device itself.
  • I couldn’t stop thinking about my MIL’s Kindle.
  • I had an increasing need to see what my formatting looked like on the device itself.
  • Amazon put up their refurbs for $110.

I’ve had it for about a week now. I love it, but I do have some issues and (surprise!) it hasn’t diminished my love for my eBookWise or my BlackBerry. They’re like children: All different, all equally loved for different reasons.

One of my issues with the Kindle is how light and skinny and fragile it is. I know this is supposed to be a plus, but after holding my eBookWise for the last 2-1/2 years, its weight and ergonomic design has spoiled me. The eBookWise feels like a book, only a lot more comfortable.

Anyway, I desperately needed a case for my Kindle to protect it, but geez, people $30? No matter how much I liked my MIL’s case, I figured I could do original-and-cheaper on my own. (Well, hey, that’s how I got into this book publishing business in the first place, my tendency to DIY…everything.)

I’ve made a prototype. I think there are better ways to do this and better designs. I’m going to live with this one for a while and see what I’d change, what other features I might like, a better/more efficient way to build it.

Here’s Prototype Number One (mouse over the pictures to see the commentary):

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Remedial crafting

Crocheting is not my favorite thing to do, but I do enjoy Tunisian crochet (remedial, in my case). I’m making a queen-sized “comforter” for XX TD for Christmas (provided I get it done in time). Here’s the first skein:

I had a ball of Sugar’n Cream yarn (100% cotton) I bought for XX TD to learn how to crochet. Two problems: A) She’s left-handed and I’m not, and B) I’m a horrible teacher. I seriously needed a break from reading, writing, publishing, DDJ. It had to be something creative, but not involved. Eva Gale’s dishcloth project inspired me, and I thought it was perfect for a mind break while still feeding my creativity.

Eva’s all about self-sufficiency and she really strives for it in ways big and small. She is such an inspiration to me. As she puts it, this project is therapy for $2. Awesome. I really liked it for that, but as a step toward self-sufficiency, I found it extremely expensive in terms of materials and time. One $2 dishcloth plus sunk costs of time when I could have been making far more than it would cost me to buy a pack of dishcloths (or Scotch-Brite sponges, which is what we use). But it was fun and it was a break and I got to use a ball of yarn I had no other use for. That was the big bonus.

I don’t watch TV much. It interferes with other things I find more interesting. Still, occasionally I want to vegetate but I can’t do that without something to do while I’m watching TV. I feel really guilty if I’m not able to watch TV and do something productive at the same time. Crochet fills that bill.