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(no subject)

This is one of the few songs I can sing along to and hit all the notes. Also, the lyrics resonate.



If being wrong's a crime
I'm serving forever
If being strong's your kind
Then I need help here with this feather
If being afraid is a crime
We hang side by side
At the swingin' party down the line
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Merry Christmas from the future!

It's going pretty well so far.  Coffee and presents in bed, one of which was a horse calendar in which we have this fine example of Cool Horses Don't Look at Explosions.  The calendar is Australian so that could explain why having a background of certain fiery death is considered normal and calendar-worthy.


Also, shark tracking!  This is Carol.  Her tracker battery ran out last year, but not before she took in Cape Reinga, Fiji, took a quick spin across to Tonga, then followed the Trench down to East Cape, paid us a visit in Wellington, and generally had a fantastic South Pacific cultural experience.
carol

Yes, I am actually getting excited about sharks on Christmas morning.  Look at my life, look at my choices.

Also I have a pretty dress.  Enjoy your Christmas folks!
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(no subject)

Today was the first official day of Dr Wheel's holiday*.  Naturally, I woke up at 5:45 and then woke him up going "Entertain meeee!"  Well actually he wanted to get to the supermarket early to avoid the Christmas rush and buy a chicken.

In NZ, even though it's summer for Christmas, folks still seem to go for the giant roast meal - usually lunch - full of stodgy and hearty winter-filling goodness.  And pav.  It's not Christmas without pav, preferably decorated with kiwifruit (note Americans - it is *not* called a kiwi, that is a type of bird) and strawberries thus:

tourta-pavlova-570
Basically if it doesn't look like this you're doing it wrong.

Consequently, after lunch on Christmas Day everyone sits around nursing their foodbabies, but unlike those northern hemisphere types, it's also quite often 25 degrees.  Some folks go to the beach.  We usually host the Christmas for our lot because we're the ones with a house big enough for Dr Wheel's large and boisterous family.  Dr Wheel's large and boisterous family also enjoys shared feeding.  This means that everyone brings something, usually in large enough quantities to feed everyone, and so we end up with enough food to feed about 20 people. Everyone makes a valiant effort to make it disappear, and whatever's left over ends up being our meals for the next 6 weeks**.

In my family, the traditional Christmas meal was eggs, beans, and chips.  My Mum believed that fancy Christmas meals were often the result of unsung labour by one person while everyone else had a holiday, and she wasn't having that - thus, the simplest meal anyone could think of.  Also, not huge.

In my view there is something to be said for not consuming your own bodyweight in fat and sugar in the name of capitalism/religion.  But .... PAV!!  Pav will always be my downfall.

* Not mine. Mine started on Wednesday and goes gloriously till the end of February,  the fact of which I'm reminding anyone who will listen because it's the first holiday longer than 2 weeks that I've had since I started working my first proper job and OMG.
** Slight exaggeration alert.
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(no subject)

There's an LJ revival thing going on - ironically, on Facebook. But it inspired me to make a post.

This year I've struggled to post regularly. Main reasons for this include:

- moving to a contracting position where I'm actually busy at work and don't need to kill hours at a time
- feeling like everything I've wanted to say, you've all heard before anyway
- virtually none of my real-life friends post here any more, or read, which means that a lot of the funny shit that used to happen in comments doesn't any more and comment threads are often a bit awkward with people who don't know each other well posting things that are safe and supportive rather than challenging and/or amusing. It's really hard to come up with anything other than 'thanks!' to those, even though they are lovely and well meant
- feeling like I can't keep up with my flist and feeling guilty about posting and expecting commentary when I fail to comment on other people's posts.

I even thought about deleting it. But then I thought "Fuck it." I've kept this journal since 2003 for a reason, and it has some pretty major milestones in it. The deaths of both my parents, buying my first home, the day Trent Reznor convinced me to become an advocate for legal acknowledgement of responsible drug use, getting together with Dr Wheel, my first through 11th burns...

Yeah, so it's still here. Maybe I *do* have more to say. Maybe someone *is* still reading. And right now I am on holiday, with two glorious months of not-working stretched in front of me (thank you contracting for paying well enough to allow me to do this). I will be working, but it's volunteer work doing harm reduction at festivals, and keeping the data so we can prove that it's effective. I'm excited about this and grateful for the way things have miraculously aligned* to allow this to happen.

For today, instead of profundity, have a pic. This is a screenie from a video in which a friend and I swum around in a dive pool with a pole, a photographer, 250metres of tubular crin, and masses of chiffon. Proper pics to follow once we've gone through the proofs and picked out the ones we like. So far the winning shot has neither of our faces in it. Oops. :D
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* When I say 'miraculously aligned' I actually mean 'I've worked my arse off on this for the last 8 years and finally people have noticed and got behind it.'
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I just made The Most Hippyish Thing Ever



This is from the fleece of a sheep I shore, except the hood. Comment on Facebook - "I bet it sprouts it's own hemp beans!". :)

Geek notes: the shading on the hood came out reasonably well even though I messed up the colour gradation a bit. Next time I'll measure out the fleece for each spool before I start spinning.

Next project: shiny shaded silver leg warmers!

(I may have slipped and accidentally bought 6kg of moorit merino/polwarth and 4kg of silver and grey/ black gotland)
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Pole kittens!

That's what we apparently call the people who clean the pole between acts at a show.  I was one with these two hot laydeez at my studio's student showcase last night.
pole kittens
Discovery of the evening - I can climb in gogo boots.  Also, from some angles I have cleavage.  Who knew?
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(no subject)

OMG woolgasm! SO much beautiful wool!

Backstory - I've had an arapawa/gotland fleece sitting in my stash for a few years, from a flock in Tawa. I've always wanted to do that thing where you take the fibre all the way from shearing the sheep* through preparing and spinning the wool to making an item of clothing for myself.

A few weeks ago, I dug out the fleece and started on it, teaching myself to crochet in the process. I finished the item, and it looked hippyish enough that it needed a hood. Half way through the hood, I ran out of wool.

Bollocks.

Joel suggested I do stealth shearing - sneak back to Tawa and shear the sheep for enough wool to finish my project. I figured buying a bit online would be easier and involve less running around paddocks at midnight and potentially getting shot for worrying.

Anyway, I went hunting for arapawa/gotland online and in my travels I accidentally slipped and bought some merino, polwarth and straight gotland fleeces in a variety of natural colours. Oops. I have a project in mind that involves playing with natural variations in coloured wool, so now it can be a really big project!

Pictured is the hippy thing I made from my own shearing on the left, and the wool that I'll finish it with on the right. I'll have to pick the darker bits out, but it's close enough. I'm stoked!
IMG_20160902_101041

PS I think that the history of fibre and textiles is the history of civilisation, up to and including the fact that looms were the first computers. But I'm geeky like that.

* Even better if I bred the sheep myself. Working on that.
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(no subject)

Putting this here because Facebook just feels like egoposting and here is more private. This is the first time I got horizontal in iron x practice and held it steady, this Tuesday just gone.



It's here because I struggle a lot with confidence and self esteem these days, and I want something to remind myself that occasionally I'm starry. That not all my practices are failures, and that I am making progress.

When i get that second leg straight, I'm going to be insufferable. :)
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(no subject)

Over the last few days, whenever I've seen that naked Trump statue posted, I've dropped in and left a comment along the lines of "I'm really not down with body shaming, even of that scumbag."

A statement of my own view, or so I thought. It's been interesting to see how many people will vehemently tell me I'm wrong to feel that way, and work very hard to convince me that my perspective is invalid. Arguments used include:

"It's art!" (it is art, because art is supposed to elicit emotion and discussion - but that doesn't mean it's not also body shaming)

"Think about it in context!" (you mean the context where almost everyone is bombarded with reasons to hate their body every day, or the one where Trump is not smart enough to realise that a lot of his belittling of other people probably comes from an unacknowledged desire to make himself feel big? which probably stems from the same crap this statue is perpetuating regarding self-loathing)

"He started it!" (what are we, 4?)

"He does it to women all the time!" (and we think he's scum for it, so why is it ok to now do the same thing? does that make us scum too?)

"He said he had a huge penis though!" (and? since when are tiny penis jokes any kind of argument about anything relevant?)

"You just don't understand how it's supposed to represent the Emperor with no clothes!" (which I do actually understand, I'm just not ok with the way we're focusing on the 'nauseatingness' of his naked body as a representation of his ugliness)*

"Not everything is about you!" (um, yeah - i got nothing)

* I actually think it had the potential to be a lot better. If his naked body were painted in representations symbolic of the people who would be (are being) harmed by his policies, for example. As it is, we take the Emperor's clothes off and what's revealed is a fairly accurate representation of the body of a fat old man, and we are supposed to be nauseated by that.

I'm sorry folks, it's body shaming and I'm still not ok with it.

Note - one person out of everyone I've commented to responded with "Oh, I hadn't thought of that." and took it down. There's a reason that person is in my inner circle of friends, just saying.