So, anybody interested in the Perfect, um, Shrug? I know you thought I might, just possibly might, in a sane world, be finished knitting shrugs. Well, yes, I am finished, for the moment. I prefer to think that I have merely pushed the snooze button on the shrug clock radio. But there are shrugs that have been knitted, yet remain undocumented. I need to fix that.
Here is Julia, modelling her shrug in the Standard Pose, which studies have shown is the pose that shows the One Skein Wonder to best advantage and greatest wonderment.
Aaahh. Look at Julia. The very model of American Girlhood. So demure, so exceedingly well-behaved. Here she is, on Rosh Hashana, prim as all get-out in a shrug made of Blue Heron beaded cotton. But wait–there’s more good behavior:
It’s a double dose of primness! Would butter melt in their mouths? We think not.
Wait a minute–what have we here? Is it a….
I believe the technical term for this is Whack Rabbit Dancing.
Nova Scotia: Birthplace of Lox and Hooked Rugs
Been meaning to show you this lovely thing:
My sister-in-law, aka Aunt Kathy, bought this last summer in Nova Scotia. Rug hooking was, until quite recently, a subsistence craft there, practiced by men and boys as well as women and girls. This beauty was hooked by a man. He made the ‘patches’ replicate the patterns woven into the cloth he used. The plaids are particularly cool. While in Nova Scotia, Aunt Kathy found a wonderful rug hooking shop in Mahone Bay. You root around in old clothes to pick your fabrics, which the proprietress then turns into balls of strips while you wait.
It’s so easy and satisfying that kids willingly do it. Both Maggie and Paul have projects of their own design on the go. In case anyone is wondering why a boy in the Bronx is dedicating a rug to the glory of David Beckham, here is a glimpse of Paul’s bed. (To our friends in the British Isles: That is the only ‘football’ content you will see here for a good long while.) I love that this rug-hooking skill is so easily picked up, and that even a beginner can design their own project and get such good results. Must take it up in my spare time.
Note: Last paragraph was edited to provide link to Spruce Top, the rug hooking shop in Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia where Aunt Kathy got the rug and the makings of Maggie and Paul’s projects. The man who made Aunt Kathy’s rug is Raymond E. McMahon, who happens to be the featured artist on Spruce Top’s website right now. Hey! He’s from Queens, New York! (P.S. For those concerned, Paul does know that Beckham has changed teams. However, Paul’s own soccer coach, who hails from Ireland, has imbued his young charges with great devotion to Manchester United, hence Paul’s decorative, um, flourishes.)
Despite the nonstop drenching rain, we’ve had a wonderful time over the Jewish holidays. Yesterday, on Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement), I fully enjoyed the 45 minutes I spent in front of the smoked fish counter at Zabar’s. Hemmed in on all sides by people like myself, who had been tasked, while other family members prayed, to get provisions for the ‘Break Fast’ meal (traditionally, a suppertime ‘breakfast’ of bagels and lox), I got to watch New York at its best. People were making nice–aw!–it’s so cute when New Yorkers are nice to each other. Makes you think they’re from out of town.
A dozen expert slicers manned (and I do mean manned) the long cutting board; I heard Russian, Spanish, Chinese and several accents of good old Noo Yawkese spoken while I waited. A Chinese slicer wished a customer ‘Happy New Year’, and he responded, ‘Thanks, and to you, too!’ Another customer, dressed in a dark suit and tie– like someone who might just have come from synagogue? — let several numbers go ahead of him while he waited for his ‘regular’ counterman. When the man was free, the customer ordered his pound of ‘Novie’ (lox lingo for ‘Nova Scotia salmon’). The counterman held out a sliver to taste (this is VIP treatment, lemme tellya–the customer/counterguy bond has to be rock-solid) The customer blushed and said, ‘No taste today.’ Ahem. I guess he was fasting. Anyway, this parade of lovable, appetizing-crazed humanity kept me entertained until it was time to go stand in the rain on the sidewalk in front of H & H Bagels. (C’mon, where else you gonna get your bagels on such an auspicious day? Gristedes? Feh!)
I’m sure you’d prefer that I take this extraneous, neither neck- nor sleeve-related blather to the lounge (I can tell by the way you’re fiddling with your laser-pointer and rolling your eyes). I’m off to Rhinebeck tomorrow for a few glorious hours of mud, muck, and matted sheep! Woo-hoo! Look for me! I’m shy! Yes I am!