Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

global warming? February 8, 2012

Filed under: Commentary — Shawn L. Bird @ 10:17 am
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It is rather ironic that ‘global warming’ is the likely cause behind the deep freeze causing mayhem in Eastern Europe these days.

I suppose that the more accurate term would be “Global climate change” because changing it definitely is.

So what are we going to do about it?  Solar panels, geo-thermal heat, and cisterns are all simple enough to add into a building project.  Why can’t all of our construction be energy self-sufficient?  If they can’t quite all, can enough be done to at least make them significantly self-sufficient?  I think it’s worth the effort, and we certainly have the technology, if we are just willing to use it.  Big business is not more important than global survival,  no matter what they think.


making it yourself October 29, 2011

Filed under: Commentary — Shawn L. Bird @ 3:21 pm
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I’ve been knitting socks the last couple of days. It takes me about 8 hours to knit one sock, so 16 hours for a pair. This is not exactly a cost effective way to purchase socks. Good heavy duty socks can be had for about $10. With the yarn at something like $5 a ball, I’m getting little more than 25c an hour value out of my time. However, the satisfaction is in the making. I will have another sturdy pair of warm socks, something I am always thankful of in winter, with my chronically cold feet. I will have bright, pretty socks, and I will have socks I made with my own two hands and four needles…

There’s a sense of power in knowing that you can make things yourself, be they socks. sweaters. clothes, furniture or whatever. Self-sufficiency is a reward.  I like spending my time making something that lasts, as opposed to doing housework which never ends, for example.

I’ve used Paton’s Jr Jacquard yard (90% acrylic. 10% nylon) in “Big Deal Teal.”  The pattern is from I actually stumbled upon it quite accidentally when looking up a precise definition of the word “Widdershins.” In this case, most socks are knit knee down, and these are knit toes up. I had been interested in someday finding a toe up pattern, and since this one fell into my lap, I was happy to try it. You can find the pattern here.  I love such serendipity.

This is my result- one sock complete, and the toe started on the twin as you can see on the right.


Widdershins socks in Paton's Jr Jacquard

As you can see from the ball, the yarn ends in lime, which suggests to me that my mate sock is going to end up about 1/2 shorter than the first one.  I will live with that!  I probably should have unwound the ball and divided it equally in half so I could have exactly the same amount of yarn.  I wish there was an easy way to do that, come to think of it.

What do you make that gives you small satisfaction of ‘doing it yourself?’


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