Category Archives: cats

Pollyanna gets bogged down

Lyda here.

I have all kinds of plans to write posts about stuff – my new apartment, my new cats, my new furnishings, my new projects & reading… but most of these posts cry out for photos, and I haven’t downloaded them.

Actually, those first three are not really new. They are used and/or old.

I’ve now been in my “new” apartment for 13 months or so. The apartment was built in the 50s, I’m guessing. I moved in just in time to view my neighbors butchering a cow in the driveway. The shared driveway. I have a picture of the butchery, but I hesitate to share it. The cow arrived in the driveway already dead, and the neighbor plopped it on a tarp on the driveway and cut it into parts. I tried not to watch. I did see the blood pouring down the driveway and the neighbor’s kids running barefoot through it.

And that’s how we do Thanksgiving in my hood.

Those people have since moved out, and the new neighbors in that unit are quiet, polite, and have yet to pour blood down the driveway. It’s early days, though.

But I digress…

My furnishings are old – I got almost everything at either Salvation Army or Goodwill. I made curtains, and have a lot of painting furniture / sewing pillows / other projects on my list. Of course. Posts and pictures will be forthcoming. But I digress… 

The cats are also used – ahem, pre-owned – by one of my coworkers. The big black cat is Jinx, and she is calm, sweet, and loving. The reddish yellow cat came in as the boss of the massive climbing structure that came with the cats (don’t all cats move in with their own furniture?). She is the Red Queen as she often yowled “Off with their heads!” At least, I assume that’s what she was saying…

And then there is the kitten. Originally, my coworker was going to keep the kitten, but he left her with me while he went on a long vacation and when he came back she wasn’t having anything to do with him. I think she decided I was easier to manipulate.

The kitten was such a pale striped yellow as to be almost white, and she had a habit of hiding and then attacking passing cats, feet, and random bits of paper. She was also easily spooked, often breaking high jump records in her startlement. (“Startlement” is too a word, spellcheck.) So the kitten’s name is Spook. She has grown and calmed down a bit, and now her fur has darkened into a pale gold. But still, no paper is safe.

As the kitten grew – they will do that – she began a systematic campaign to take over the world, starting with the climbing structure. She and the Queen had some epic battles, but in the end, the Queen abdicated and the kitten was triumphant.

So Spook rules, and still attacks the others, my feet, and anything made of paper without warning. I almost named her Cato… The Queen has become a lap cat, and Jinx is still mellow.

And yes, I think this does qualify me as a crazy cat lady.

Cow-butchering neighbors an optional extra.


Pollyanna and the Game of Thrones, office version

Lyda here. I was going to call this post “Pollyanna gets PWNED“.

This post contains no spoilers, in case you haven’t read the books or watched the series yet. Which you totally should do.

Have you read A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin? My Brother the Professor calls him “Railroad”. It’s the first book of the Song of Fire and Ice series, and it’s awesome. My son The Sith Master loaned me the books, and I devoured them and can’t wait for the next one to come out. Write faster, please, Mr. Martin!

Have you seen the HBO series “Game of Thrones” which is based on the books? A coworker loaned me his DVDs of seasons 1 and 2. The series is awesome, and faithful to the books. As it should be, as the author is involved.

So – this co-worker and I decided we should play Game of Thrones in the office. Without the “cutting off body parts” component of the originals. Silly HR rules.

We named it “Game of Flags.” It’s basically Capture the Flag. We divided the office into four teams.  You have to get the other team’s flag to your workspace, take a picture of a teammate with it, and email it to the office.

The competition is getting brutal.

Friday I was guarding my team’s flag.

It was stolen twice.


I only had to guard the thing for two hours. How hard could that be? Very hard, apparently.

So I learned some things about myself.

  • I am a very bad loser. When I discovered the first theft, I acted like a toddler whose been awake for a month, ate all the Frosted Flakes in the store, and lost her toy. I was just lucky that there weren’t any managers around to witness my meltdown, and that my coworkers accepted my profuse apologies for behaving like an ass. I was calmer for the second theft, at least on the outside, although inside I was cursing.
  • I am still capable of embarrassing myself so much that I want to run away and never come back. (See previous.) One might think that one would outgrow such things. One would be wrong.
  • I hate competing. I didn’t like it as a child, and it still sucks. Possibly because I’m such a bad loser. Possibly because I always seem to lose. I never liked sports, spelling bees, or anything else that pitted me against the other kids. Instead, I was always rooting for my friends to do well. I hated it when the teacher called on someone who didn’t know the answer. I didn’t like being graded on a curve. Not because it wasn’t fair, but because I was the one who aced the test and ruined the curve for everyone else. Yes. That was me. Sorry.
  • I am far too trusting to be let out on the streets. I never suspected my coworkers of trickery. I probably need a keeper. Hopefully my keeper would have an awesome sense of direction, which would also solve my getting-lost problem.
  • I’m a terrible guard. Don’t hire me for that. You’ll only have yourself to blame when the crown jewels go missing.

Pollyanna versus the Hairy Beast

Lyda here.

So, there’s this new study that shows that women find men with a ten-day growth of stubble to be more attractive than cleanshaven men, men with five days of stubble, and men with full beards.

What?! But… stubble can scratch a lady’s delicate skin! And is not attractive on all men. The study only used photos of ten men, which is hardly conclusive. And that link does not mention how many women they surveyed. Nor does it deal with any of the myriad factors that might affect a woman’s preference, not even where she lives or what band she likes. We might be looking for a guy who looks like our favorite rock star (yum), or maybe our dad (shudder).

What does Pollyanna think? As with everything else connected to sex and romance, it all depends. On the woman. On the man. On the moonlight and the music. And the wine… never discount the power of the wine.

One thing:  anything’s better than a soul patch.

Check out “Stuff Mom Never Told You” which is full of… well, stuff your parents never told you. Funny.

As for what Pollyanna herself prefers… well, a lady never kisses and tells.

Although, I will confess that I do love these hairy beasts.*

And as for the perfect beard…**

* These cats are at Big Cat Rescue, where more than 100 exotic cats of 14 species are given safety and protection along with exercise, care, love, and lots of toys “enrichment items.” Like cardboard boxes. Their enclosures are bigger than the video clips would suggest.

** He’s a liger. Mane like his dad, stripes like his mom.

Pollyanna and the Triumphant Return (flourish of trumpets)

Well, that was a long silence. What can I say? There was a hole in my tennis racket… the sun was in my eyes… a friend came in from out of town…


Oh, must have more Blues Brothers.

Okay. It is totally my fault. Life, the Universe, and Everything just got in the way.

How about if I distract you with some Random Weirdness?

Like:  The 30 Most Important Cats of 2012

or: 50 People You Wish You Knew

Not working, is it?

Will you forgive me if I send you some barbeque? When pigs fly, you say? Exactly.

Excuse me while I wipe the drool off my face…

Tomorrow, actual fiber-related posting.

For now, I’m going to find some of that barbeque…


Pollyanna and the Still-a-Knitblog Pig-Licking

Anna-Liza here. Hmph. I’ve got lots and lots to blog about, knitting stuff even, and no time to blog! So here’s a bunch of quick stuff, some of which I may elaborate later.

By way of being dessert first, as a reward to our loyal readers (all eight or so of you), here’s a fiber-related rap video.

And … let’s see. I finished my first pair of toe-up socks.

They fit my skinny feet perfectly!

I used Wendy’s Generic Toe-up Sock Pattern with  Judy’s Magic Cast-on and a 4×2 rib, with the short-row heel as described in the pattern. I didn’t change the ribbing pattern at the top, and I cast off super-loosely, so there’s a bit of a ruffled effect. I love these socks. They’re a discontinued colorway in KnitPicks’ sock yarn – I got it on sale ages ago, and the ball bands have disappeared, but I think it may have been Stroll. Did they used to have a different sock yarn?

I’m starting to swatch a cardigan for Darlin’ K, not the Cabled Rib Cardigan, which will most likely be frogged and restarted in a different yarn eventually. This one, I’m thinking of designing myself. But you’ll have to wait – I am in the extremely early throes of this and have no idea what direction I’ll go.

But I will say that Tahki’s Lana 100% organic wool yarn is YUMMY.

I’m also working on a shawl/wrap thingy called “The Pearly Queen’s Plain & Fancy Melody Shawl.” Plain & Fancy is one of my absolute favorite yarns, but it’s a little hard to find. I get it at the Estes Park Wool Market (which is where I got this pattern, too, at their booth). The Pearly Queen, aka Midge Jackson, has a website via Wildflower Fiber, “an alliance of East Texas artisans,” where she sells their yarn and associated patterns. I’m making this in the colorways Black, Purple Mountains, and Dark Magenta.

What else? Wow, in some ways it feels like a lot, but not a lot to say about it. I’m really pushing myself to finish up some projects. I’m deciding what to knit for a friend who’s expecting her first baby in February. I’m feeling the urge to try some more designing, but have too many ideas to settle down to one. I’ve also got a hankering to cast on for a lace shawl – perhaps Aeolian (which Moja is seriously considering – she showed us the pic at knit night and got me dreaming, as well) or Laminaria (which Yarn Harlot recently finished). I’m also thining about the Blue Jeans Lace Leaf shawl.

But man, that Laminaria is really tugging at me.

As a  second dessert, here’s another fiber-funny video, featuring two cats and knitting.