Monday, June 12, 2006

Why am I trying to post while The Imp is asleep like a baby on my left arm and shoulder? She may be small for a cat but she still weighs a bit. There. I extracted the claws from my shoulder and put her down. As another sign of her deep devotion, the sheep was right outside the shower when I opened the door to get out this AM.

I am going to veer slightly off the course fibrewise to another passion which is needlepoint (sometimes called tapestry but that gets confused with "real" tapestry which is a weaving art such as practiced by the Victorian Tapestry Workshop, whose products I can only gawk at). At left is the secord of three panels in an Anchor kit of pictures of tropical fish. It is about half done which means the kit is half done since one panel is complete. I didn't realize (or hid my eyes) that the whole thing was counted and my eyes don't do counted very well these days. But this kit is rather forgiving because nobody will know if one bit of weed is a few stitches off. I have done all four of my dining room charis in different designs (done back in the states while watching NFL before I discovered AFL which gives you no time to do any craft) and lots of pillows that I have mostly given away. I recently added to my very small stash of tapestry kits (really only one) buying an Ehrmann kit (at right) on sale. I have done two of their Kaffe Fassett kits which I bought while in Birmingham UK on a business trip in 1988 but they were given away and I can't afford his current work. Ah for the days of better exchange rates! When one lives outside the US/UK world one is always aware of the exchange rates, and they appear in the nightly news so you know exactly where they are. When the Aussie dollar goes up I race off the buy stuff and when it's down I keep my plastic in its place.

I mentioned my eyes and someone had commented on the presence of kerataconus in the list of ailments. It is a congenital corneal defect which causes the cornea to bulge out of its normal curve. This causes blurred and/or double vision which slowly degrades over a period of years; I was diagnosed in 1984.
While it runs in families, I have few relatives and no full siblings. It is correctable for a while by gas-permeable (rigid) contact lenses but at some point some people with the condition reach the point where vision is no longer correctable for the work they do. I deal with computer data bases all day and must be able to read print in a variety of sizes and conditions. Computer software has come a long way in being able to customize fonts and sizes but most of us can remember the days when it was one size, in green on black. When my vision could only be corrected to 20/100, my doctor (at the Ohio State University Eye Hospital) operated to give me corneal grafts in both eyes (1989 & 1990). Now my vision is corrected (under ideal conditions in the optomotrist's chair) to 20/20 but one contact is adjusted for distance and the other for close and I still need reading glasses for close work. Therefore, counted work is difficult and it takes an hour to do about one square inch of the fish canvas. I gave up my work as a photographer. I was good enough that I was encouraged to turn pro and I was tempted but was too chicken to give up my paycheck. I sold a number of my photos, but when I could no longer see to focus my enlarger in the darkroom, I gave it up and bought an autofocus camera. Now the digital equivalent is beyond my means at the moment, but I hope to have something better than what I am currently dealing with (Kodak 3MG pixel).

The bear just returned from a trip to the hardware store with a present (which obviously didn't come from the hardware store), a new book by Jim Main about the Swans winning the AFL Premierseship last year. Yes, Shake Down the Thunder comes from the Notre Dame fight song, which has been altered to fit the Swans. This is one of those footy history mysteries as to why the All-Australian AFL (or formerly VFL) teams all have American tunes as their club songs. Do not ask me because I don't know. The Swans eventually lost Saturday's match by 2 points. I am not all that upset because they were due for a loss and the middle of the SCG was a mix of swimming pool and mud bath. I feel sorry for J who chose that match for her first Swans match in Sydney but then I have say through a gfew like that in that ground.

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