Could there be a better way to spend a Friday evening?
We had a nice leisurely dinner at Henry's, which is on the next block over from Powell's, stressed out slightly by the fact that Donna & Katrina had discovered a disturbingly large pack of knitters hanging out in the space where Stephanie would be doing her reading. This was at 4:30 (the reading was at 7:30). There weren't any chairs out yet, so there was nothing to be saved. We had to go on blind hope that getting there after dinner (6:00) would be soon enough to find us some seats. I consoled myself by staring at the baby's adorable little perfectly round, pink head. He is too cute. Almost makes me want another (I mentioned this to Bill and all color left his face - I think there would be a major uphill battle there).
When we headed over to Powell's, you could see knitters criss-crossing the store like hungry sharks. We headed upstairs to stake out seats and were lucky enough to find six together to the left of the podium, three rows back. There was a lovely lady sitting by herself on the aisle, and I think that people assumed the row was all saved. I dumped my knitting and headed off to find a copy of the book. On the way I ran into Yvonne and Leslie and saw a bunch of other people who looked extremely familiar but I wasn't sure from where. If I've met you before but rushed past you with a quizzical look, it's because I felt like I should know you but couldn't figure out why! I wish I had Lily Chin's ability to remember everyone I've ever met, but sadly, I (obviously) do not. Shortly after we arrived, it became standing room only.
Stephanie arrived looking fabulous in her newly-completed sweater (which she had to take off almost immediately because it was about 100 degrees in there, what with all the knitters). Her talk, as usual, made me laugh to the point of tears. I had to rip back an entire row after her story about "dropping the k-bomb", which is the term she and her husband use when he lets slip to the muggles that her four published books are about knitting. I was stupidly knitting a lace shawl in Kidsilk Haze - lack of focus caused by hysterical laughter combined with sweaty hands from sauna-like conditions does not bode well for either yarn or stitch pattern. I was chiding myself the entire time for not bringing a sock.
We were at the very end of the line when it came time to get our books signed. I'd turned my phone to vibrate for the talk, and finally felt it buzzing about 9:45. I answered to a ticked-off Bill (who was probably convinced I'd been kidnapped while trying to navigate my way home on MAX) who chewed me out for not calling. It was getting way too late for him to load the kids up to drive me home, so Donna very graciously volunteered, even though it's in the exact opposite direction from her house. Just another example of the kindess of knitters!
We finally made it to the front, where I got to have a chat with Tina from Blue Moon (who looked to be responsible for Stephanie while she was in town) and Tammy. Then, I got to meet the Harlot herself. I gave her one of my sock kits (since isn't one of the benefits of being a celebrity all the free stuff?), which prompted her to say "I like you!" and make me all giddy. She got the Lazy River pattern with some of the brand spankin' new Nature's Palette yarn in it (this is the yarn used to make the sample). I've got a bunch of it ready to go up in the shop once my camera battery charger is located and time for photography is found.
Ugh, could my hair be any flatter? Thank you Powells and your lack of air conditioning... As Stephanie examined the kit, Katrina helpfully piped up and told her that it was one of my designs. Then, Tina tossed in that I was the designer of Knee High to a Grasshopper (the Blue Moon Rockin' Sock Club April pattern), which was enough notoriety to earn me a picture with The Sock! Oh, man, I got to hold The Sock. Thinking back, I wish I would've admired the yarn or examined the pattern, but I was trying too hard not to fall down.
Stephanie assured me that the picture didn't look at all dorky, but we'll see (if I'm lucky enough to make the blog line-up). I think every picture ever taken of me, with the possible exception of one or two of my wedding photos, is dorky, but I may not be the best judge. At this point, I was starting to feel hummingbird-like and said a few more stupid things to the very gracious Harlot before I grabbed my newly-signed book and sat down on a nearby bench to collect myself. I'm getting all sweaty just thinking about it!
All-in-all, the evening was the perfect ending to a very knitterly first half of 2008. And to go along with it, Lisa informed me that the Fall Knitscene preview is up. Go check out the Ribby Retro Socks! I don't know what the deal is with my knee-highs (I swear they grow shorter in the mail on the way to Interweave), but again, what were supposed to be knee-highs ended up mid-calf on the model. Lisa knit the sample for me, so it's not just me with apparently freakishly-short calves. I'm scratching my head at that one...