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Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Daze

Dear Ann,
We find ourselves in August again. For you, August is hurry-up time, school’s about to start. Meanwhile, up here, nothing is about to start, and as it gets later in the month, it seems like nothing ever will. Apart from the mass shleppage of heavily-laden L.L. Bean Boat Totes into and out of the city, there ain’t a lot going on. The local economy is being supported entirely by tour groups from France and Italy, to judge from the accents of people asking me directions. (I did guide an Australian couple to Yankee Stadium on the B train, but they were my only Australians so far.)
When I first moved here, the great slack-off of August was a wonderment to me. In the Omaha of my youth, unless you were a fisherman, August was just another month, but hotter. (Another thing that amazed me upon arrival in August 1981: seersucker suits! Hundreds of older guys walking around looking like Hal Holbrooke playing Mark Twain. Now you don’t see them anymore; I feel privileged to have the memory.)
I’m not exactly idle. It takes a lot of maternal labor for 2 girls (and one dog) to have a childhood memory of lazing in a hammock, reading adventure books and eating cherries. But by cracky, we are gettin’ R done. Cherries–check. Hammock–check. Books–check. Faithful friend–check. Some days, I find myself with more children. I don’t know how that happens. Eventually someone picks them up, and I try to sneak one of my own into their car, in the hope that someday I’ll be able to baste up the quilt sandwich that I’ve had masking-taped to the basement floor for several days now. You really don’t want to leave a quilt in suspense at that stage. Not recommended.
August is also Appointment Month for us. Here are some things I’ve seen on the way to Appointments.
Passing the Louis Vuitton store en route to dentist. A high point in windowdressing. I just love the umbrella.
The cardboard box version is the best, but if you’ve got a whole lot of LV luggage, it’s nice to know that you can make an Eiffel Tower.
(Speaking of the Eiffel Tower, have you seen this shawl pattern by Natalie Servant? So very beautiful, and unusual. I’m trying very hard to not cast it on until I’m done with something (anything) already on the needles. I never wear shawls. I keep thinking that is relevant, but maybe it’s not. We’re talking about knitting, after all.)
This summer I keep running into groovy food and drink on wheels. Just like in Portland!
Best slush I’ve ever had. And you know, I’m a slush person.
Look at the menu! A ginger slush! I had ice tea with raspberry mix-in, and it was so good I levitated (just a little). Carrie had citrus with guava mix-in, also a very tasty way to freeze your brain. But next time I’m getting the ginger. If you get the basil or mint mix-in, they pulverize the leaves in a blender first. Also the servers are adorable. I hardly need to say that you can follow the slush truck on Twitter (kelvinslush), or if you’re very old-school you can call the Slushphone. (I signed up for email alerts. I want to know where that truck is at all times.)
Baby Louie’s Courthouse Steps blanket has been washed and dried a bunch of times and has (almost) all the lint picked off of it.
The thrill of the fade never fails me.
The acorn doesn’t fall far from the stripe-loving tree; Carrie made me this bowl at camp. Hand-built, and the dark blue glaze is matte. A great addition to the collection.
Sorry to be so light on the knitting content. But hey, it’s August. When it’s make a grilled-cheese sandwich or take a photo of my knitting, I am forced to go the grilled-cheese route.




  1. The Kelvin is a river in Glasgow, Scotland. I don’t think you would want to eat slush made from it. But mmmmmm, seersucker.

  2. Ahh…the hammock under the tree, cherries and an adventure book…What could be better? (Maybe the Eiffel tower of LV???) Nope – who needs cool luggage when there are flip flops, green grass and an adorable dog? Happy August!

  3. A fabulous August post and the blanket looks wonderful! Here in DC things grind to a halt in August also – the fact that its 1000 degrees helps and yes there always seem to be more children. Feels like we’re all just waiting for something (and we all know what it is.)

  4. I love that you are working so hard behind the scenes to provide future summery childhood memories!
    And speaking of memories, your Holbrook/Twain image is dead on! Do you remember the hats that went with the seersucker suits? They weren’t (exactly) seersucker hats – were they straw? – but they had grosgrain ribbon bands that *coordinated* with the summer suits.
    Ginger slush…mmmm. Ginger anything, really. Irresistable 🙂

  5. Kay,
    You rock.
    That is all.

  6. I aspire to own a seersucker suit one day.( As I’ve grown older, my aspirations are not as grand but more likely to be fulfilled.)

  7. Ginger slush sounds fabulous! BTW, where do you hang a hammock in NYC?

  8. I feel the same way about knitting shawls. I always want to make them and then remind myself that I’ll never wear them. But you’re right, that’s not really the point. Cast on! Do it!

  9. My best friend reminisces about spending a summer lying on her bed, reading, with a big bowl of apples to munch on. Still sounds good to me, but a hammock is even more perfect.

  10. Seersucker suits…reminds me of a recent beach weekend in NC where I saw a wedding party on its way into church for an afternoon wedding. The women were pretty in their dark blue satin, but the men were all in seersucker, including the groom. Lovely.

  11. ah yes…..the lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer. we used to have a hammock in our living room. a great way to rock the babies to sleep…….

  12. Quinn remembers the hats with the suits, too–Wall Street, circa late 70’s early 80’s…I thought I was imagining it, or had read too many books of a certain era. Thank you for posting that, Quinn and Kay! My laugh of the day…

  13. Seersucker suits…
    It was my 11th spring, and (new to NY) I was to participate in my first field day. My parents were out of town, other relatives were working, and granny didn’t get around too much (if you know what I mean).
    The games began, and no one was there to cheer me on. Suddenly, I saw my beautiful cousin Joanna, fashionably late–but THERE! Just as if she were my big sister!
    Perfectly made up and coiffed, she looked especially lovely in her new seersucker suit.
    The year was 1965. It was a seemingly small thing, but I’ll always be grateful.
    Thanks for checking in, Kay, and for the trip down memory lane.

  14. Enjoy August. It seems never-ending. . . and then all of a sudden. . . WHOOSH! It’s gone!

  15. Ah, but Kelvin is also a temperature scale referenced to absolute zero, so that make a lot of sense for slush! Clever name.
    August is being perfect here in Portland, high in the 80’s and blessedly cool mornings. Maybe you need to come back and re-sample the food carts.
    Nice Courthouse Steps!

  16. I don’t wear shawls either, but you have me lusting for that Eiffel Tower number!
    My father had a seersucker suit in the 1970’s, after my parents moved from the Bay Area to Fresno. Yes, it’s a dry heat, but three months of 100F temperatures make an impression.
    Quinn, straw hats, for sure, aka “boaters”.
    Where can I get a ginger slushee?

  17. The ginger slush sounds amazing, except for the ice-pick-in-the-eye feeling it would cause….
    And your vow not to cast on until you’re done with *anything* currently on the needles made me laugh, since just last night I decided to frog a long-dormant project so I could cast-on without guilt!

  18. Oooh — question about lint! You mentioned that you had to de-lint Louie’s very nice blanket: is that just part of the deal with a cotton blanket? I made my new son a moderne baby blanket — loved it; washed it…and it came out COVERED in lint! So it’s been in the basement in disgrace since then. I used Brown Sheep cotton fleece. If I just de-lint, wash, and repeat a few times, will it recover, do you think?

  19. Thanks for sharing~

  20. I have a closet shelf full of shawls that I rarely wear, but the shelf just keeps getting fuller. Perhaps I need to change my life to fit my shawls.

  21. Seersucker has been very in with the hipster crowd in Brooklyn. Also, check out the Sartorialist’s Gilded Age Jazz Party shots from Governers Island.
    Also, down in the financial district during the heat I have seen, for the past few years, people wearing three piece suits and pith helmets (?!?).

  22. Governors Island, that is. Duh.

  23. Brooks Brothers still sells those suits and my Dad still wears his seersucker jacket on occasion. My Grandfather, a born and bred Massachusetts Yankee, used to wear a brown and white seersucker in the summer. I miss them – you rarely see them even in the Deep South anymore

  24. Step away from the shawl. As you say, you don’t do shawls, but you do do a very nice line in blankets, and I think Cromer could do with one. (Only joking)(ish).
    It is a nice shawl though. For a Francophile shawl-y person. x x x

  25. Mmmmm, slush on the city streets. I know you’ll get knitting once the routine picks up again. This morning, Zoé announced that the family’s next vacation had to be in New York! (Fair warning.)

  26. Seeing this post is such a cool reminder of childhood summer days and an excellent message against year-round school. Not all important lessons are learned in a classroom.

  27. Oh, man, I moved from California to DC last year. The first time I saw a man in a seersucker suit, I said to myself, “…this has got to be the Apocalypse.”

  28. Cherries, hammock, books, faithful friend–but where’s the boy? Yankees game, perhaps…

  29. A hammock. I think that is what our backyard is missing. I wonder if any of our trees are close enough together for one or if I will have to wait 15 years to grow a hammock holding tree.

  30. I wear shawls. Shawls are great, especially for around the house to cover a loose tank top and keep you from getting too chilly in the a/c. Shawls can be used on a moment’s notice for a cover-up, blanket, picnic tablecloth, scarf, tourniquette….oh, so many things! In my opinion they should be made out of silk or rayon.

  31. the mayor allows slush trucks on the streets
    will wonders never cease
    i would want to try most every flavor and floats for only two dollars i will have apricots
    summer means brooks brothers -thank you kay
    lots of memories for this florida transplant
    its nice to see the good humor truck all grown up

  32. I’m thinking that Tom Ewell wore a seersucker suit in “Seven Year Itch”!


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