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January 31, 2008

Books for January

Apparently I only finished two this month. Ah well; it's been a crazy busy month, and I'm currently in the middle of about four books, so February's list should be longer!

Magic Hour by Kristin Hannah
Genre: Mystery, women's fic
Pages: 469
Rating: 4.5
Ellie is a small town police chief who is totally out of her league when a potentially feral child wanders out of the forest into her town. Her sister, Julia, is a top child psychiatrist whose glittering career is disrupted when one of her patients kills several other children and then herself. She returns to her hometown in disgrace to try to help Ellie and the child. Along the way, both Julia and Ellie are transformed. Some of the small-town characters are cutesy and cliched, but the main characters are all surprisingly complex, and the story of the child is riveting. This one gets extra points for making me cry - something that doesn't often happen with books. But don't worry, the ending is perfect.

The Magician's Nephew by C.S. Lewis
Genre: Juvenile, fantasy
Pages: 202
Rating: 4.3
I'd actually never read this one before. I read three or four of the Narnia books as a kid, and liked them, but lost interest somehow and never finished the series. I recently decided to read/reread them all. The edition my library has start with The Magician's Nephew as the beginning of the series (anyone want to weigh in on that debate?), so I started with that this time. (I'd started with Lion, Witch last time.) I don't think this novel was Lewis's best, but it was definitely very good. I think reading these books as an adult makes the humor even better - I loved the running commentary about what a great day the housemaid was having, for one thing. And, of course, it was very interesting to read about the creation of Narnia.

Posted by Kat at 09:26 AM | Comments (1)

January 30, 2008

Sock issues

I seem to be having sock issues. I keep starting plain socks because I'm going to an event for which I need mindless knitting. But then, right when I get to the heel, I have another such event, so I have to start another sock. It's nuts. But I never think of knitting those heels, because when I'm home I have bigger projects (often on a deadline) that take up the time I have for more complicated knitting. Apparently I need to take a weekend or something to just knit heels.

But tonight? I'm going to the movies, and I'm starting another sock. Sigh.

Posted by Kat at 02:22 PM | Comments (1)

And Giuliani, too.

At least it looks good for McCain.

Posted by Kat at 10:51 AM | Comments (0)

Edwards to drop out

He'll make the announcement today, it seems. It had to happen, but it still makes me sad.

Posted by Kat at 09:15 AM | Comments (0)

January 29, 2008

January 28, 2008

Politics Links (1/28)

Ted and Patrick Kennedy endorse Obama

A dance-off? Sigh.

The boys are off the bus, and Matt Bai thinks that's a good thing.

Toni Morrison endorses Obama

The Economist on the Republican crack-up.

Interesting profile of Obama's speechwriter.

And from the Onion: Bill Clinton: 'Screw it, I'm running.'

Posted by Kat at 05:16 PM | Comments (0)

January 27, 2008

Politics Links (1/27)

Yay, Obama!
The Take-Away from South Carolina

Some of these are a bit old, but still interesting/amusing/relevant, I think:
Judith Warner on
Clinton, Obama, and identity. I particularly liked this paragraph:

I liked Hillary the mistress of minutiae, the private person with a mysterious emotional life, the media foe who met questions she didn’t like with a go-to-hell glare. If I were looking for some kind of existential nurturing in a female candidate — as, I think, most people are, when they talk about a Hillary’s not seeming “human” — I’d find it more in someone who could explain to me in detail how she’d take on the insurance companies that hold families like mine hostage, than one who’d seek to “bond” with me over a shared fantasy of the feminine condition.

Hilarious: Questions for the Candidates

Caroline Kennedy endorses Obama

Martin Luther King III endorses Edwards

Posted by Kat at 12:24 PM | Comments (1)

January 26, 2008

I have a printer!

And Dewey has a new box!

Dewey thinks he's a printer.
Posted by Kat at 10:22 AM | Comments (5)

January 24, 2008

Still alive, really.

Sorry for vanishing this week. Work has been insane and I'm exhausted. I should be back to my usual self by next week.

In the meantime, here are the GOP candidates as Buffy villains!

Posted by Kat at 03:10 PM | Comments (3)

January 20, 2008

In the office on a Sunday: Random Thought #1

Someday I will learn that Franz Ferdinand's song "Michael" has noises in it that sound like my phone. Because every single time I listen to it, I end up checking my phone, just to be sure.

Posted by Kat at 02:11 PM | Comments (1)

January 15, 2008

Politics Links (1/15)

A long but interesting analysis of Clinton's and Obama's foreign policy advisors.

Caucusing (or not) on the Sabbath.

Susan Faludi on the correct Hillary Clinton stereotype.

Candidate Implicit Association Test

Posted by Kat at 08:16 PM | Comments (4)

January 14, 2008

Politics Links (1/14)

The Candidates on Chairs Sort of like a light bulb joke.

The Electoral Compass It's basically another "Which candidate matches your views?" quiz, but the graphical layout of the results is interesting.

Emotion without Thought in New Hampshire

Posted by Kat at 08:19 PM | Comments (0)

Men of Austen

Choose your suitor. Hee!

Posted by Kat at 03:22 PM | Comments (3)

January 13, 2008

New sock yarn!

I was going to show you some more pictures of Christmas gifts, but I can't find the... thingy. You know. The CompactFlash card adapter. So those will have to wait. Instead, how about some new sock yarn? Any interest in seeing that? Yeah, I thought so. I got these all 60% off! They're all Claudia Hand Painted.

Blue Terra Cotta:

Claudia Hand Painted Blue Terra Cotta

Bearded Iris:

Claudia Hand Painted Bearded Iris


Claudia Hand Painted Plumicious
Posted by Kat at 09:51 PM | Comments (2)

January 11, 2008

January 10, 2008

Politics Links (1/9)

Maureen Dowd on Hillary's tears

McGovern wants to impeach Bush

And apparently I never managed to post those yesterday. Oops. All the excitement seems to have caught up with me - I'm exhausted and I woke up this morning with an awful sore throat. Hopefully I'll be able to recover this weekend...

Posted by Kat at 10:12 AM | Comments (0)

January 09, 2008

And another.

This article on Edwards includes a quote from me. They got my job title a bit wrong, but it's still exciting!

Update: The same reporter writes for McClatchy, so it's going to be in a bunch of places, I think.
Charlotte Observer
AZ Central

Posted by Kat at 10:17 AM | Comments (0)

The morning after

Well, that was a somewhat depressing evening. Oh well. At least it was close between the top two. CNN didn't call me back, but they did post a bunch of my pictures with quotes from me. Go here, and then click on New Hampshirites Cast Their Votes (down under the picture). I'm pictures 16 through 20.

Posted by Kat at 09:48 AM | Comments (1)

January 08, 2008


AP has called it for Clinton. CNN is refusing to call it yet.

And me, well, I'm waiting for CNN.com to call me. Yeah. I sent them a picture I took today, and they called me several hours ago and asked various questions, and then around ten they called and asked if I would talk to an anchor. I said sure. So now I'm waiting...

Posted by Kat at 10:35 PM | Comments (0)

Primary Night Reading

This is really stressful, at least on the Democratic side. I'll keep updating with interesting reads to keep us occupied while we're biting our nails...

What the claims that a black man is unelectable say about us.

How to recover from a big loss in the early primaries.

C-SPAN's surreal and wonderful campaign coverage.

Posted by Kat at 09:22 PM | Comments (0)

Exit Poll Primer

Very interesting.

Posted by Kat at 11:57 AM | Comments (1)

First votes in!

Dixville Notch has traditionally been the first New Hampshire town to vote - their 17 or so registered voters gather at midnight and the results are in within about five minutes. This year, Obama and McCain were the big winners there; notably, Clinton got zero votes. Here's the rundown:

Obama: 7
Edwards: 2
Richardson: 1

McCain: 4
Romney: 2
Giuliani: 1

It's also worth noting that 10 votes went for Democrats and 7 for Republicans. Most voters there are registered Undeclared, which means they can choose which primary to vote in. Traditionally, the town is extremely conservative. So it's very interesting to see that Obama got as many votes as all of the Republicans combined.

Oh, and here are the results for Hart's Landing, another small town that votes shortly after midnight:

Obama: 9
Clinton: 3
Edwards: 1

McCain: 6
Huckabee: 5
Paul: 4
Romney: 1

Happy Primary Day! I'm going to vote and then volunteer for a few hours, but I should be home by late afternoon and I'll keep you updated if anything exciting happens.

Posted by Kat at 11:31 AM | Comments (0)

January 07, 2008

Primary Eve Links

Search the public record of donations to candidates. Search for your zip code, employer, family members... endless fun.

Sullivan on Obama as a liberal Reagan

Clinton: A Candidate Spurned

"Two candidates, one room, two days and two worlds apart." Indeed. I was at both events, and the difference was shocking. I'll post more about it later when I upload my pictures from the Clinton event. And here's a great video about it.

In this race, is it better to be black?

Can one 5-month-old be photographed with every candidate?

Posted by Kat at 11:27 PM | Comments (1)

On TV with Obama!

I'm in this video from Reuters. Toward the end (around the one minute mark), when it's showing Obama in the crowd, I'm one of the people he shakes hands with. I have brown hair and am wearing a dark pink jacket... it might be hard to pick out for those of you who haven't met me in person, but I'm there!

Posted by Kat at 12:40 PM | Comments (2)

Happy Primary Eve!

Wheee, it's Primary Eve! I've seen six candidates since Friday, with another planned this afternoon. (I'll post about them later in the day, when I can upload photos.) I've felt like it was 3am since about 8:30 last night, which is a really, really weird feeling. I think I'm going to take tomorrow off to go hold signs at my polling place, catch up on some sleep, and watch the news.

It's so exciting around here. I've been trying to convince my coworkers to vote. The polls are looking interesting. I'll post anything interesting I see/read during the day.

Posted by Kat at 12:32 PM | Comments (0)

January 06, 2008

Another on the O'Reilly incident

I can't believe I missed all this. Wow.

And, incidentally, that confirms that Dickerson was there... my friend and I considered going to the edge of the press area and yelling "John Dickerson!" just to see if we could meet him, but we weren't brave enough. Ah well.

Posted by Kat at 09:46 AM | Comments (1)

January 05, 2008

Politics Links (1/5)

Be wary of late New Hampshire polls

O'Reilly in shoving match at Obama event (The one I was at, in fact, although I didn't notice this going on.)

NH GOP backs out of tomorrow's Fox debate

And in CNN's picture here of the Obama event, you can practically see me... see the sign right in front of Obama's legs? And then the one to the left of that? I think that might be me. Whee!!

Posted by Kat at 11:24 PM | Comments (0)

First thoughts on tonight's debates

1. For me, the defining moment was when Romney, Huckabee, Paul, and Giuliani were having their "You started it" bickering, McCain was looking amused and above all this, and Thompson seemed to be asleep.
2. McCain really does seem like the grown-up here.
3. The Obama question was sort of odd.

Overall winners: McCain and Huckabee

1. Clinton totally has an "Oh, look at the little boys misbehaving" look on her face. Sigh.
2. Have they forgotten Richardson is in the room? Poor guy. I really like him.
3. Obama and Edwards are both pretty impressive. Edwards is remarkably calm.
4. I really miss Joe Biden.
5. Wow, Obama is smart.
6. Hillary seems to be on the verge of a meltdown. "People like me!" Yeah. Okay.
7. Obama and Edwards are being remarkably chummy.

Overall winners: Obama and Edwards

Posted by Kat at 10:42 PM | Comments (2)

Obama Rally in Nashua

The new camera and I went to a huge Obama rally this morning. You can see my pictures here. It was... amazing. The line to get in was ridiculous, to start with:

The line outside

If you can't tell, that line goes all the way across the frame. And that was only a very little bit of the line, the part I could see from where I was farther back. We thought we weren't going to get in, but we ended up standing only about seven feet or so from the podium. We were in the second row. If you were watching the event on C-SPAN, you saw us. Crazy.

Here's the very excited crowd as Obama entered:

Walking in

It was like a rock concert or something. People were mostly fairly attentive as he was speaking, but a few times, the screams were so loud that we couldn't hear Obama. He was extremely charismatic and engaging; I felt as though I made eye contact with him two or three times, and in a crowd that size, that's impressive.

Obama talking, part 9

His music was very good - lots of Motown. As he ended his speech, "Signed, Sealed, Delivered, I'm Yours" blared, and you could feel it - the crowd was his.

Obama talking, part 8

Again, more pictures here. The camera will be going to see other candidates in the next few days... stay tuned.

Posted by Kat at 08:36 PM | Comments (0)

January 04, 2008

In the wake of Iowa...

Wow. What a night. Some interesting reads today:

Vanity Fair's profile of Michelle Obama

Eleanor Clift on Obama's universal appeal

Andrea Mitchell's strange attack against Clinton I noticed it too - it was weird. But I'm not sure it was as bad as Salon is making it sound.

And on the lighter side, a bet is a bet.

Edwards as Seabiscuit?

Clinton and Obama as Teacher and Apprentice

Posted by Kat at 05:19 PM | Comments (1)

January 03, 2008

Booking Through Thursday: Anticipation

Today's question:

What new books are you looking forward to most in 2008? Something new being published this year? Something you got as a gift for the holidays? Anything in particular that you’re planning to read in 2008 that you’re looking forward to? A classic, or maybe a best-seller from 2007 that you’re waiting to appear in paperback?

As I mentioned, I'm looking forward to reading lots of Austen. I am also looking forward to a few books coming out by favorite authors, including Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (April 1), Jane Haddam (April 15), Stephenie Meyer (May 6), Meg Cabot (several). I got a few books for Christmas that I haven't started yet, including The Rest Is Noise and The Amateur Gourmet.

Posted by Kat at 11:54 AM | Comments (4)

Happy Caucus Day!

Yay, it's Caucus Day! I'll update this as I find fun caucus-related links throughout the day.

8 Questions Iowa Could Answer

Caucus! The Musical

The Primary OFfice Pool

The Political Geography of Iowa

Posted by Kat at 10:05 AM | Comments (0)


A Christmas gift:


Pattern: Tychus
Yarn: Patons Classic Merino
Changes: I only did four sections, not five, and it was big enough. And I used a provisional cast-on and then grafted the ends together, instead of seaming.
Comments: Fun, quick, and looks great. My main problem was that I spent more time untangling yarn than actually knitting, since I was working from both ends of two balls of yarn.

Posted by Kat at 09:35 AM | Comments (0)

January 02, 2008

2008 Goals: Reading

1. Post about all books I read. I did pretty well this year, but didn't quite manage all. (The December post is still on its way.) Even if I only write a few sentences about a book, I want to record them all.
2. Give away or donate at least one book per month. I have a bunch of books (mostly picked up at yard sales or given to me by friends) that I know I'll only want to read once and not keep, so I want to make a dent in these. I know one a month won't make that much of a dent, but at least it's progress.
3. Read and give back most of the books I've borrowed from various people. I have a bunch from my dad and some from various friends, and it's a bit out of hand.
4. Read Austen's six main novels. I'm embarrassed to say that I've only actually finished P&P and S&S. I'm going to reread those and read the other four. PBS says this is the year of Austen, after all, so who am I to argue?
5. Keep number of items out from library under 20 at all times. Preferably under 10. I know 20 sounds like a lot, but I take out videos and CDs and stuff too, so it adds up quickly. Anyway, I tend to take out a million things and then not have time to read them, so I'm trying to work on that.

Posted by Kat at 10:09 AM | Comments (4)

2008 Goals: Other Crafts

1. Get back into cross stitching and finish at least two things. Started this yesterday, actually!
2. Start spinning again. I have a beautiful wheel and I've barely touched it. I really need to just put the kitten in another room and get it out.
3. Get better at needle felting. I have a cute little penguin kit to start with. Whee!

Posted by Kat at 09:41 AM | Comments (0)

January 01, 2008

2008 Goals: Knitting

1. Finish an adult sweater. I've finished a few baby sweaters, but never an adult-sized one.

2. Finish at least one pair of socks each month. I love sock yarn. (Don't we all?) And I have a lot of it. And I need socks, actually. So I should knit a bunch of it up.

3. Knit at least one thing for charity each month. This way I'll have a decent box of things to donate next winter.

4. Felt something. I'm thinking maybe the ever-popular clogs.

5. Post knitting pictures at least once a week. With my new camera, I doubt this will be much of a problem.

6. Put all finished items on Ravelry. I'll enter stash and works in progress as I have time, but I want to make sure I definitely at least enter all my finished projects.

Posted by Kat at 02:05 PM | Comments (3)

Happy 2008!

Happy New Year, everyone!

Posted by Kat at 12:05 AM | Comments (0)

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