Archive for September, 2011

Weaving a Yarn #2

Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to weave. 

~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic’s Notebook, 1960

After months and months of struggling through my first weaving project I’m finally catching on. Or at least it’s starting to feel better. Last week was two hours of hell. I kept losing my place in my pattern, completely zoning out and having to rip out whole inches of work over and over again. The particular pattern I choose doesn’t jive mathematically with the number of warp, or vertical threads, I have on my loom, so half the time I don’t catch the last thread in the pattern. And Sally, who’s been weaving for about thirty years, can’t figure out why. It’s been slightly nightmarish and most weeks I leave with a pounding headache. That was however, until last night, when for whatever reason, instead of zoning out, I was able to zone completely in. My pattern was suddenly and effortlessly memorized. The two times I momentarily lost my place, I was able to figure out where I was just by looking at the piece. My shuttle flew through my warp threads almost rhythmically. After one hour and forty-five minutes I had completed twenty inches of perfect pattern. It was a good night.

Irene Saves Chickens! (for a bit)

“The Sky is falling!”

 – Chicken Little

So after months of bitching about unemployment, I now have three jobs. Needless to say I’m about three times busier than I was before, but I’m going to try to write more often.

Last Sunday was scheduled to be Chicken Killing Day, but that was before Irene decided to pay a visit. Chicken Doom Day was then pushed back to Thursday, although I’m not sure how the reprieve benefited them. Over the last few weeks, as they speedily expanded in size, they also seemed to become increasingly uncomfortable. They walked a few steps at a time on legs that couldn’t possibly support their weight, wobbled, then sat down, hopefully a little closer to the grain feeder. When we first put them into their chicken trailer, I was a little concerned that they wouldn’t have enough room to move around. It never occurred to me that even if they had wanted to scurry about they wouldn’t be able to. Several broke legs because they’re breed to outgrow their own skeletons, and they usually died soon after. We went from 19 to 26. Next year I want to raise an heirloom breed that isn’t so intensely messed with, if such a kind even exists. It was sad and disheartening to watch them stumble about like little Frankenchicken monsters.

Unfortunately, (or fortunately, depending on your perspective) I had to work on Thursday and missed most of the slaughter. I arrived home to find the kitchen table covered with naked, puckered chicken carcasses and Cory, Danny and Pat arguing over how to operate the vacuum sealer. From the corrugated brows and bickering I assumed everyone had a real blast.