As Loretta Lynn and Jack White put it, “Portland, Oregon, and sloe gin fizz/If that ain’t love, then tell me what is . . .”
After winging west from Nashville, we landed in Portland, Oregon, and immediately got our groom on:
We did all these things, with the result that Kay’s poodle cut was really working for her:
Good morning, Portland! With your host, Kay Gardiner.
One conclusion so far is that there is nothing more like a Fellini film than early morning local television. On Portland’s institution AM Northwest with Helen and Dave, we held forth on the thing we love along with other people who were there to talk about the thing they love or otherwise feel the need to promote very early in the morning: extreme fitness, relationship repair, playing the guitar.
We didn’t get to hear his segment, but we wish this guy well and I hope he casts on for a sweater soon.
In scrolling down the juicy video archives of AM Northwest (we’re in there if you dig hard enough), I found an interview with Sarah Vowell, the author of a new book about Puritans (The Wordy Shipmates) and famed as the voice of Violet in The Incredibles. It’s a classic AM Northwest moment: Sarah Vowell sitting in the kitchen set with Helen and Dave, with the kitcheny doodads behind them, busting Puritan jokes and talking about animated movie voices.
We didn’t manage to visit every single yarn shop in Portland because apparently that would take a week or so, but we did do some economic stimulus work of which we are proud.
We had an impromptu edging seminar with Elizabeth Prusiewicz, proprietress of KnitKnot Studio. Brilliant energy in this lady; she has claimed the mantle of Fastest Knitter in the Northwest, and let me tell you, you can’t beat her.
We managed to wedge our way into Close Knit despite the fact that it’s closed on Mondays. The proprietress there, Sally Palin, opened the door, and that was that. We left with Rio de la Plata sock yarn and Blue Sky Organic Cotton. We were weak. Her shop is just a glory of good stuff.
And of course, Yarn Garden was a beautiful encyclopedia of yarns. Room after room. Everything, it seemed. If there’s no yarn left, it’s because it was absorbed by Yarn Garden.
La Super Eggplant Mariko, who inspired the Kiki Mariko Rug in the new book, among many other inspirations, was wearing another sweater that really ought to become a rug, too. She demonstrated a mysterious knitted object she unearthed while cleaning out her father’s things. We predict these pompom neck thingies are going to be The Next Big Thing. Or at least The Next Big Pompom Necky Thingie Thing.
We caught sight of the Angry Chicken, too, but like all rare and ephermeral things, we didn’t get a picture. She moves fast, the chicken does.
The Mothership: Powell’s Books
Ah, you hear about it, you hear about it, but like Niagara Falls, you can’t believe it until you see it. Huge, huge bookstore, delights everywhere, and a big batch of knitters up in the Gray Room to hang out with. We really loved seeing everybody, were grateful for the company, and want to come back soon. Thank you, Portland!
We’ll tell you all about Seattle next. Seattle is, like, fab and everything.
Come Hang Out!
Meanwhile, we’re in New York for a few days and hope to see you guys hither and hon. Our schedule:
NEW YORK, NY, Thursday, October 16
6-8 pm, beloved Knitty City on the Upper West Side.
NEW YORK, NY, Friday, October 17
5:30-7 pm, sleek and fabulous Purl Soho. Information here.
RHINEBECK, NY, Sunday, October 19
1:15 pm talk, signing most of the day in the authors’ tent, the surreal experience that is the NY Sheep & Wool Festival
NEW YORK, NY, Tuesday, October 21
6:30pm, the beautifully bookish Brooklyn Public Library. 10 Grand Army Plaza, Dweck Auditorium.
See you all soon. Must go caffeinate.