Thursday, September 27, 2007

Still Inappropriate

My request for reconsideration of the license plate "TOE UP" was denied. I am allowed one more appeal, in writing. My planned argument is that slang is fleeting, but sock knitting has a rich and varied history (even toe-up construction). I plan also to question the authoritativeness of the Urban Dictionary, and suggest that any reference which accepts public contributions can get things wrong. The term they are objecting to is actually "tore up," not "toe up."

As I said before, not holding my breath. But it's worth a try. Any suggestions for my argument from you all are welcome.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


Last week, I got an email from the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles telling me it's 90 days before my birthday and time to renew my tags. So I decided to take the plunge and buy a vanity plate. Which one of these possibilities did I pick? None of them. Instead, I went with TOE UP.

I'm aware that it makes no sense to the uninitiated.

Yesterday, I got an email marked "** High Priority **" telling me the request had been rejected because it was "inappropriate." I called to ask about it, and the customer services associate explained that they check a number of sources and the Urban Dictionary says that "toe up" is a variant of "torn up" or "tore up," as in wasted or high. I can see where that's a message they wouldn't want on license plates.

Still, I argued, if you Google "toe up," you get one hit (the highest) for the slang definition, and then pages of sock patterns.

They're going to consider it again, with the added note that it's about sock knitting. If it goes through, I'll just get the plates. If not, I'll get another rejection notice. I'm not really holding my breath.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Jog 8, Walk 5, Jog 8

I got stuck on day 14 of the Couch-to-5K Running Plan, which is jog for 8 minutes, walk for 5 minutes, and jog again for 8 minutes. Day 15 is jog for 20 minutes, which is actually my fitness goal.

But I keep repeating day 14. Am I just being a wuss? The difference between 8+5+8 and 20 seems like a lot, especially when I'm really slogging through those last 5 minutes.

So I'm departing from the plan and creating my own week.

  • Jog 8 minutes
  • Walk 4 minutes
  • Jog 8 minutes

  • Jog 9 minutes
  • Walk 3 minutes
  • Jog 8 minutes

  • Jog 10 minutes
  • Walk 2 minutes
  • Jog 8 minutes

Then I might skip directly to week 6.

I may need to explore different routes. Currently, I walk to the end of Mackenzie, then turn and run the length of Mackenzie, back into Concord Village, then up to Henderson Road where I turn and head back home. This puts the walking portion of my workout along the AOL property, and I must look suspicious walking along, checking my watch every 30 seconds to see if it's time to start running again. They probably think I'm a really out-of-shape terrorist or industrial spy, checking on morning security routines.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Brain Age: 48

For years, every time a name or a word has failed to pop into my mom's head when she needed it, she would say, "This is so scary." She has long been afraid of Alzheimer's, but I don't think she has reason to be afraid: it's just the little things. When it happens to me (more and more often in the past few years), I find it more annoying than scary.

But a high school friend of my mom's has just been diagnosed with early stage Alzheimer's. His doctor, Mom reports, says we all need to learn/study four new things to keep our minds active and healthy. So after playing with Brain Age on my niece's Nintendo DS on Sunday, I went out and bought a pink one for Mom and a red one for me & Mike.

Our NDS came bundled with Brain Age 2, which informs me that my brain is older than I am, so it's time to start exercising. I'm a whiz at Sudoku, and the Piano Player game is a joke for me. But still, I'm terribly slow at the "Rock/Paper/Scissors" memory test, and I'm hopeless remembering the random placement of 25 numbers in a grid.

When I first started writing this post this morning, my Brain Age was 44. This afternoon, I've aged to 48. I don't care for this trend.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Further along the New Pathways

I had better success following a particular pattern in New Pathways for Sock Knitters. This is Bordhi's Dove Sock, knit with Bearfoot in the Pheasant colorway. ("Dove?" Pheasant?" The hilarity continues). Note: Dodger wanted his foot in the picture too.

Overall, I recommend the book, with the caveat that I think the socks are a little weird-lookin'. As ingenious and innovative as Bordhi's new pathways are, the socks seem fat, because some of the overall allowance for the heel is created in the arch expansion. When the socks aren't on a foot, they don't look like feet. I prefer the shape (and fit) of socks with just a short-row heel cup and no heel flap.

Still, this book has forever changed how I manage the wrapped short-rows, and made me a bigger fan of the method of increasing she uses, which will probably henceforth be widely known as La-Link and La-Rink. (Check out Bordhi's video demo on YouTube). I expect I'll be experimenting with some arch increases in my socks for a long time.