Friday, October 5, 2007

Sewing Can Be Hazardous to Your Health and Clothing

Odd title, no? You'll understand in a little bit.

I promised yesterday that I would have pictures for you. I'm about to fulfill that promise. It took one hour and fifteen minutes - let me repeat that for those of you who think that your eyesight has suddenly gone wonky - ONE HOUR AND FIFTEEN MINUTES - to upload five pictures. Google gave me a message in the middle of the upload three times to tell me that it had failed and to try again in 15 minutes. So instead of trying to upload all five at the same time, I tried doing three. That didn't work, either. So I finally had to upload each one individually. My ass has gone to sleep from sitting here twirling the track ball so the damn computer didn't go into hibernation mode.

In any event, let's start with a WIP. I just got this in the mail from the lady at the yarn shop... the one I wrote the nastygram to. These were on display in the store to advertise my class. I just have to finish the cuffs on them. The one that looks fat has the ball of yarn stuffed inside the heel. I left it in there to give it some shape. They're knit out of Lorna's Laces in "Tuscany".

Now we move on to yarny goodness. These are all from Miss Babs in "Rainbow", "Falling Leaves", and "Honeydew Lullaby" (that one is actually a very soft green and yellow - so soft that it looks like it has cream in it, too).

Next are skeins from Dashing Dachs. These are in "Pumpkin Patch", "Jack Frost", and "Bon Bon". A soft-spun yarn; it's yummy.

These are individual skeins from different dyers. We have Beyond Basic Knits in "A Girlz Gotta Have Chocolate", The Dyeing Arts in "Tub O Gin" (this one was a destash buy from Zonda and has the coolest stitch marker - a bottle of Bombay Gin - attached to it; Gabby's ear is in the way), Elliebelly in "Cleopatra", The Fuzzy Peach in "Holding My Breath For You", and Prairie Daisy Handspun in "Look at Those Maples".

Last but not least, here are two items I had made for me. The first is a set consisting of a bag from MommaMonkey, stitch markers, and absolutely gorgeous yarn from Merlin the Cat (the yarn has gold metallic thread winding through it for a bit of glitz), and an alpaca Fair Isle stocking cap with tassels and pom-poms made to fit my head by skyblue58 (she's on Etsy and makes the most exquisite hats). My head gets really cold in the winter, so I decided to get a hat that was lightweight but warm. When I found her post for another Fair Isle hat in alpaca, I wrote to her to see if she would make me one. We chose the colors and she had at it. It only took a few weeks and arrived yesterday. It fits like a second skin and will be a welcome addition when we're on vacation in less than two weeks now (wow!).

It's been a lazy day. It was also supposed to rain, but it's early for our rainy season. I guess some of the counties north/northeast of us got a little bit and it's snowing in the Sierras, so the ski resorts much be jumping up and down for joy. There goes any chance I had of going to Reno before next year. Neither one of us knows how to drive in the snow, and it scares the shit out of me when Hubster does it (we got caught in a snowstorm last year on top of the pass, and I made him turn around and go back to Reno - not a bad thing as far as I was concerned). I've got to jump in the shower and put my sweats on (it's going to be very cold tonight - at least for us) so I'll be comfortable for my knitting marathon. I tried like hell to knit last night, but I kept falling asleep. I wound up knitting one round total all night. Wow. At this rate, I won't finish these socks until November of 2010.

So before I got really sleepy and tried to knit last night, I had some mending to do. All was going well - I had found some thread and a needle (all my sewing stuff is packed, so I was lucky to find thread that matched what I was mending), and I sat in the Monster watching my usual court and prison shows (I have to get all primed for my prison incarceration... uh... visit... in a week) while I sewed. My mending finished, I secured the thread, cut it, put down my scissors, inspected the mend, and went to set aside the pants I was working on.

Something wasn't right.

My jammies went right along with the pants.

What was worse, my finger went along with my jammies.

You see, back in late 1983-early 1984, I was cutting an onion for my ex-husband's sandwich. Instead of putting the onion on it's side, I got lazy and set it flat side down on the counter, cutting straight through from side to side instead of having it on edge and cutting top to bottom. I know better. I remember thinking, "If this knife slips, I'm going to hurt myself.". My ex always kept his knives razor-sharp, so it was gliding through the onion like the proverbial knife through butter. I was thinking about the party I had set up for that afternoon at a local restaurant (I worked for DOE at Lawrence Livermore National Lab at the time, and as admin, part of my job was to set up parties for special events - you know, like Tuesdays). We were all going to meet at the restaurant around 2:00 p.m., and I was looking forward to the whole thing. I had also quit smoking two weeks' prior, so I was a little out of sorts. Anyway, while I was daydreaming and not paying attention, the knife hit a snag in the onion. I looked down, pushed a little harder... and the knife slid right through the onion, into the side of my finger at an angle, and lodged itself in the bone.

The good thing about sharp knives is that you feel no pain - at first - so I went to pull out the knife and inspect the damage. Unfortunately for me, since the knife had gone in sideways and was still partially in the onion, it wasn't budging and was only getting onion juice into the cut (that hurt). So I did the only thing I could do.

I pulled the knife towards me, completing the cut through the onion and further sawing into my bone and finger.

I have to admit, it was quite spectacular. I had cut the bone enough so that when I freed the knife, my finger just sort of separated and dropped down, hanging by a shard of bone and the skin on the other side. I looked at it spurting blood all over the counter and thought, "Well. He can't eat this sandwich.". (It's funny the really strange things you think when you've hurt yourself rather badly.) John came into the kitchen, took one look at my finger, and said, "You bled on my onion.". Great.

Then it began to hurt. A lot.

John then came out of his shock, grabbed a handful of paper towels, shoved the finger back into place (that HURT), wrapped it up, and off to the emergency room we went. When we got there, the lady behind the desk asked me what the problem was. She didn't even look at me. John said, "Show her, honey". So I unwrapped the bloody paper towels and let my finger dangle over her intake papers. That got her attention. She turned white, told me to sit down, and went and got a doctor.

Now, I don't know where this doctor got his medical degree - maybe one of those trade schools you see advertised on TV, or in the back of the National Enquirer - but he took me over to the sink, scrubbed it out with green soap (you remember that shit from grammar school, I'm sure), shoved it back into place, and put a splint on it. No stitches. No pain medication. Nothing. I called my boss while I sat there wishing I had a big old shot of Demerol to stick in my ass and told him what the problem was. He was horrified and told me to go home. I told him no, that I'd see him at the party - but that I'd be a little late. After everything was said and done, the doctor discharged me. Neato.

On the way home, I just had to do it. John must have read my mind, because he pulled into the first 7-Eleven we saw and bought me a pack of smokes. Ahhhh. Some relief, anyway. So I went to the party and found that Mike, my boss, had three Kamakazies lined up and waiting for me. I downed those in quick succession, lit another smoke (he would have made me smoke one of his if I hadn't stopped and bought my own), and promptly had another three Kamis. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Now I was shitfaced and nothing hurt.

The finger healed badly (duh... you think?) and left a nasty scar that goes diagonally from the side straight through to the middle of my finger, and since all the nerves were severed, there's no feeling on that side from the first joint to the tip. It's a really neat party trick to be able to stick needles through that part of my finger and scare the living shit out of kids (hehe - you should see me on Halloween). Which brings me back to the whole point of all this.

When I was sewing, I had the pants in my lap and my finger underneath them. Since I wasn't paying attention then, either, I sewed right through the fabric through my finger through my jammies. A nice, neat pants/finger/ jammies sandwich, as it were. I used to do that all the time when I was hand quilting, since my left hand was under the quilt guiding the needle. I was able to just cut the thread and slide my finger through it to free myself. But this was a little different.

So I got my embroidery scissors, carefully cut the pants free on top, and then carefully cut my jammies free on the bottom. Finger freed with a bunch of threads sticking out of it. Then I had to sit there with my tweezers and make sure that I got all the threads out. That task completed, I was finally released from my clothing jail.

No wonder I'm a nudist every chance I get.


Skein Queen said...

Oh man, Pam! That is some story. I like your attitude of still going to the party no matter what! (Loving the yarnie goodness, esp. the first photo)

Lone Knitter said...

Oh, no! Your poor finger has endured all sorts of mishaps! It's a good thing you have new yarn to soothe your injury.

Leah said...

Beautiful did such a great job picking the color....but that is what you are great at so that is no surprise.

Pam the Yarn Goddess said...

Thanks, guys. :) It's all true. I can even take a picture of the finger LOL.

Glad you all like the yarn. And thanks, Leah... I studied color some years ago when I taught myself how to weave (I had to learn how to warp a loom, so I had to learn how to coordinate colors). I'm happy you like the hat - she did an awesome job on it.