Book Review: Sense and Sensibility

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Sense and Sensibility

I love Jane Austen. I admit to being a tad bit saddened by the distance from characters that is necessarily present in her works, but for a work of the period she does incredible things that truly allow even the modern reader to connect with Elinor and Marianne, the heroines of the novel. Also fantastic, particularly in this novel, is her ability to satirize genuinely (if that is possible) her society. It is what it is, and yet due to her humor and perhaps also to a modern perspective, there is an underlying critical current.

Although to me there are characters and occurrences in this work that are very similar to those in Pride and Prejudice (or, I suppose, the other way around), the novel is unique in and of itself. Elinor and Marianne are strikingly different, yet I find points to sympathize with both of them. Their mother is silly, and Elinor is more maternal, but she is also busy with her own love story as rational as she may be. I think it is disappointing that Austen includes the figure of their younger sister and yet she disappears, but that is a minor point. The scandalous story of Eliza and her daughter is an honest truth that I appreciate as a reader who is used to the fairly idealized world of Eliza Bennett, in whose novel even servants are not mentioned. Not, that Austen acknowledges every realistic point of life, but i think that this novel holds the day-to-day more closely than others. 

I adore the women she writes, who years later I still identify with as a young woman in 2008. Although our lives are very different, the feelings are the same, the worries and the personalities ring true. This is, I think, what has kept her books selling for so long

You Are Not a Very Nice Old Man!

Last night at 1 AM when I was finishing sleeve the first for the Central Park Hoodie, I put on Enchanted. I looove that move, a lot. There are many quotes from it that I know by heart. It’s also good because I can knit without looking up at it too much. You see, I claim to not be able to knit without looking. This cannot be entirely the case because I can see a movie and get knitting done at the same time, but it’s faster to look.

Thus, it’s a good thing that I’m not one of those people who can only watch a movie twice if they really adore t. I can watch pretty much any movie twice, and my DvD collection reflects this. During finals I watched Romeo+Juliet, which not exactly a fantastic movie, but I needed something I didn’t have to focus on too much. I’ve definitely been acquiring more DVDs lately, because they’re good weekend things when you don’t want to think too much. I used to say my collection reflected a ten-year-old with the exception of the R-rated French films. It’s better now :)

Well, that’s all I had to say. I have another sleeve to get going on!

Why yes, I invented it…

At a big box store today, one which often email out coupons, Mom and I were gathering materials to make a blocking board. First, however, she sent me to see if they had one ready-made that we could use a coupon on. Attempting to explain what I needed to the saleswoman she said something to the tune of “Blocking knitting before you sew…? Is that some kind of new technique?” I promise you she was dead serious. I was just dead.

And yes, I know as an employee of big box store you do not have to be particularly knowledgeable about the gajillions of crafts they cater to. The question just amused me greatly. 

On another note, having to rebuild an exponentially growing iTunes library from where you were last August is NOT fun…

Book Review: The Voyage Out

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The Voyage Outby Virginia Woolf

I love Woolf. To the Lighthouse is probably one of my favorite books ever. The Voyage out is not quite what I was expecting. It’s written in a narrative-style reminiscent of the typical novel of the period, and not quite what I had grown to expect from Woolf. The prose was fantastic, and she manages to capture little ideas and emotions that are generally not dealt with in books. For instance, at one point the main character feels irritated with the actions of all of those around her, merely because she is lost in thought and does not want to be interrupted. Who hasn’t felt that?

I think my problem with the book may be the fact that the back cover synopsis of the Barnes and Noble Classics edition did not feel at all like the book. In a nutshell it said “Helen notices Rachel is growing up when her engagement to Terrence Hewet starts to go badly”. Well, when you take into account Hewet doesn’t even show up ’til midway through the book and they’re not engaged until mid-way through and Helen is less mature than her niece and…well, not so much Barnes and Noble synopsis-folks.

The nature of the feminine struggle, more explicitly dealt with in A Room of One’s own, is prominent in this book. Woolf deftly portrays views on either side of the debate, and whilst to the modern reader the fact that the lives of men and women are disparate is slightly absurd, this novel makes one realize how real the struggle really was.

Plus, there’s a passage with one woman bragging about her knitting.

Did I mention I love Woolf?

Perfection-knist

I can post today. I can post today, because today I am finally where I was at 5 pm yesterday when I decided to frog an entire weekend’s worth of work on my Central Park Hoodie. My cables were wrong. I still contend I read the chart right, but according to other’s pictures and even the picture in the pattern, I was wrong. So I frogged five inches and managed to make it back today.

I have also read 120 pages of The Voyage Out by Woolf, gone to the orthodontist, researched grad schools, transfered an audiobook, started studying for the GRE and slept a bit in the past twenty-four hours.

This is a productive summer.

My LYS Knit Night

On Thursday nights and Saturday afternoons my LYS has knit time. It’s pretty much always the same people; mostly older women. My friend and I are always (unless someone brings their kids) the youngest there. I often don’t agree with the political views of the LYSO and her employers. I don’t always buy my yarn there. But I love it. Everyone is nice, they ask how school is going, remember where Corinne and I go to college, where we’re traveling, what we’re doing.

Since we see each other most when we go there, we tend to talk on our own most of the time, but it’s still fun listening to others conversations, seeing what their knitting etc.

That say, if I have a problem, I’m much more likely to look it up online than ask someone. I think it’s because I taught myself. This benefits me, because my mom and friend who were taught usually need someone to help them. Nothing bad about it, just different.

I started the ribbing on my Central Park Hoodie!

In the Box

You know how when you have a big purse there are always a million things in it? Like a lighter, kniting, needles, a wallet, tampons, paperwork, hair ties, lipstick, Shakespeare’s The Tempest (or maybe that’s me), but the thing you need is never there?

Yesterday, I finished, except for felting, my guitar strap (need to go to Guitar Center today and get a knob put onto my guitar so I can use it), so I decided to clean out my stash box. In it I found: all my books, a baby hat in donated acrylic that I may never finish, yarn bands, empty Hefty bags, sock yarn, remnants of Cascade, a broken needle threader, a “doodad”, many many DPNs without a home (note to self, needle case), a hair tie, trash, a bag full of scrap yarn…

And oh yes, size 8 straights to do the gauge swatch for my Central Park Hoodie