Friday, December 31, 2004

Chin up Li Po

Chin up Li Po, originally uploaded by kaiwa_4.

Seconds before he had to put his chin back down.

Jesus Christ. That tsunami has, at last count, killed 125,000 people. Jesus. Christ.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

AT&T really does suck ass

Chris is pounding away at his writing projects and just finished another one. He's house sitting for some friends who have a lot of pets and told me he's trained the dogs and cat to sleep on the bed with him.

Now that I've published this here, I can guarantee he will probably never direct aforementioned friends to this website.

I feel like I should express some gratitude to Chris because he's always so nice, even when I'm whining and swearing and inconsolable because I can't seem to login to the at&t website to check my cellphone bill. Even though I'm doing all this while talking to him on the cellphone.

So here it is: Chris is sweet. He's so sweet.

But speaking of the at&t website, they have this "cute" (and by cute I mean annoying and ineffectual) feature called "Ask Allie". All the pissed off customers who can't seem to login despite following all the instructions (ME) can type in a question for Allie who will then try to answer.

This seemed like total bullshit to me, so I typed in something like, "How do I change my password so I can log in? And AT&T sucks ass."

Allie replied promptly: "I'll be happy to answer your question, but be nice."

That gave me a pause. Like maybe there's someone behind the scenes with some measure of intellect after all. But nope. All of Allie's replies were dumbshit things like directing me to the FAQ page or telling me "I don't understand that question, it's too long. Short questions work best."

Thus far, I have not managed to log in and check my bill. The only thing more frustrating would be talking to one of AT&T's actual ineffectual customer service flaks.

I am so not going to be a AT&T customer much longer.

Monday, December 27, 2004


Wheeeeeeeee.....!, originally uploaded by kaiwa_4.

I don't know why, but this picture of Li Po makes me soo happy

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Food, family and a funny kine dog

I forgot to bring my camera to the family Christmas dinner so no pictures of my auntie's new Pomeranian puppy Twinkle. She's a cutie and weighs about as much as a balled up T-shirt. Auntie also brought Taffy, Twinkle's sister. She was babysitting while the owners spent Christmas in Kona.

Suffice it to say though, that Li Po was bit by the jealousy bug. The whole night he stuck by my mom's side with the expression of a kid on the verge of a tantrum. My uncle's girlfriend, though, decided he was the cutest dog there. Instead of being grateful, he snarled and nearly bit her when she tried to pick him up! He didn't though, but he lost his charm after that.

With my whole family around it finally began to feel like Christmas. Grandma even made lomi salmon and Granpa's friend had dropped off fresh poi. Yum, yum, yum. This same friend made the lau lau and that was yummy too--not salty and very lean.

Saturday, December 25, 2004

Reindog says Merry Christmas

Reindog, originally uploaded by kaiwa_4.

OK. My battle with the hat has been affecting my Christmas spirit so I'm taking a break from it and will return when I'm in a fighting mood. I will win and finish that hat. Even if it's less than pretty.

Sniffing the cotton blossom is relaxing. I was wrong. I CAN'T have too much of the stuff. I just never use the lotion.

Merry Christmas everybody.

If you're flush with Christmas delight, go away

My cousins sent me some more Cotton Blossom stuff. Note to self: Stop telling people you like that stuff because you definitely DON'T need any more of it.


I am definitely NOT in the Christmas mood. It could also be partially contributed to the fact that I found a hole in my hat that I'd have to unravel half a skein of yarn to fix. Aaaargh. I'm super pissed right now, Christmas nonwithstanding.

Friday, December 24, 2004

Uh oh

Ooooh the hat is really kicking my ass. I'm not exaggerating this time. At least all my scarves came out looking like scarves. It could go either way with the hat but the stakes are much higher because I'm working with a lot of stitches. Like, I cast on 168 stitches. I know I've screwed up some but I can't bring myself to unravel like, thousands of stitches at this point, to fix it. So I am forging on.

The hat is mostly wool though, so should keep him warm.

How old am I now...

Also, today is my 24th birthday. That's right. 24th year on 24th day of 12th month.

And God help me, I've decided today, my birthday, is the day I am going to attempt to make a knit hat for Chris. That means using circular knitting needles and decreasing and--worst of all--math.

Keep your fingers crossed for me.

Holiday wishes

My good friend June is spending Christmas in the hospital because she came down with an eye infection on Sunday and the medication her doctor prescribed on Monday didn't work so by Wednesday she was checking in to the hospital.

I called her on a whim to say Merry Christmas and that's how I found out she was there.

She's bummed and I don't blame her. Her boyfriend and parents said they would bring Christmas to her this year but she said it's not the same and she doesn't want them to bring her presents. She just wants to go home.

So in honor of June, I propose to postpone Christmas until the 26th or 27th. All in favor say "Aye."

Merry Christmas to you too

In an attempt to track down a certain Sgt. who was in charge of a case I was inquiring about, another Sgt. passed me to that Sgt.'s secretary. She listened to my query politely then told me to hold on while she searched for her boss. I heard the dull thunk of her putting the phone down and then, in a voice totally different from the sugary one she had used to answer the phone:

"Who the hell gave her my phone number??"

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Ramble, ramble, ramble....hey! Are you falling asleep??

I came back from my vacation on Sunday and spent the next couple of days mulling over what to post. Something about my vacation? Maybe, but not yet. A cute Li Po story? Hmmm...I can't think of one I haven't told already.

Christmas is almost here and you'd think with this crafty kick I've been on lately that I'd would have made a bunch of things I could give away. Unfortunately, this has not been the case. I did knit a bunch of scarves but really, how many people in Hawaii need scarves? I'm thinking I can get away with framing some of the stuff I embroidered and giving it to my grandparents, but the Sublime Stitching patterns are quite modern and not quite up their alley. So basically, what it comes down to is I spent a bunch of money creating stuff, much of which I like, that I have no idea what to do with.

I'd post some pictures but my camera battery died and I'm as-yet too lazy to charge it.

I'll be back soon with a more substantial entry.

Friday, December 17, 2004


Oops. The comments from me signed in as Chris occurred when I was using his computer, which automatically logged into his account.

And also Chris, I thought we agreed I'd try to knit you a hat?

OK. Back to enjoying the rest of my fleeting vacation.

Friday, December 10, 2004

Look what I made

Smashing, originally uploaded by kaiwa_4.

I told you it'd turn into a bag!

Thursday, December 09, 2004

More stuff

I drove behind this huge-ass truck with a bumper sticker that read: Save a horse, ride a cowboy. And somehow, even though it's not really like him, it made me think of Chris. The whole cowboy thing I guess.

I caught part of a Larry King interview with Jon Stewart. Stewart mentioned Hawaii when talking about Wal-Mart and how it's taking over the world. He said "I heard they're building a Wal-Mart on some kind of burial site in Hawaii. You know they're big when they can build on a burial site and not care about the consequences."

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

"Ribbed for her pleasure" scarf

Ribbed pleasure, originally uploaded by kaiwa_4.

I didn't name the pattern. I just knitted it.

Medley of stuffs

Today, was late to work because I locked myself out of my apartment and my landlady wasn't home to give me the spare key.

After numerous attempts to break in failed (and I began to feel stupid, imagining what the neighbors were thinking) I sank to the ground and all I could think was, Too bad I don't have my knitting bag.

People, I officially turned 80 years old today.

* * *

Neighbor and co-worker Brian made some valiant attempts to break me into my apartment too, but my landlady installed some kind of superlock that is impenetrable against bent or straight paper clips.

After a few moments of "Let me try it this way, this is how they do it in the movies," Brian also gave up.

He offered to let me drive his hammajang jeep to work if I would come back for a late lunch and drop it off so he could get to work later. I held out. Because Brian's jeep is really hammajang and the last time I drove it (I was his designated driver) he told me, "The meter's broken. When it says you're going 20, you're actually going 50."

So I spent half an hour talking story in Brian's apartment and watching him play Halo 2 video game on his X-Box.

He told me he resisted the urge to play during the Christmas party he hosted over the weekend, despite much pressure from all the guys there, because there were "ladies in the room" and there was no way he'd let his geek quotient rise that much in front of the ladies.

Since last I checked I had a vagina and he was playing anyway, this was a real boost to my self-esteem. I finally asked him to let me borrow his jeep.

After four attempts to close his door and then having to walk all the way back to get him to show me how to fit the key in the ignition (need you ask HOW hammajang the jeep is?) I was off.

This WILL be a bag

Closer, originally uploaded by kaiwa_4.

I found a simple pattern to knit a purse so I'm trying it out. It only requires a garter stitch, which gave me hope that I could do it.

But the yarn makes it difficult to see the stitches and catch little mistakes.

The original pattern called for the bag to be about 10 inches high, but mine is only about 7 inches high. Live and learn. My second bag will be better.

Monday, December 06, 2004

I am purusing the selection at The Yarn Basket, by far the best selection of yarn on the island, when the middle-aged man with the dark glasses and the totally apprehensive expression walks in. He stops. He stares. And stares.

Finally the woman who owns the shop looks up and says, "Sir do you need help?"

"Uh...yeah. Do you sell sewing machines?"

"Yes. I'm an authorized salesperson for Bernina."

"That's a sewing machine?"


"Is it a good sewing machine?"

The woman sucks her breath in and stands a little straighter. "It's the best sewing machine in the world."

"Oh. OK. I want to buy a sewing machine that's why." He looks around the shop, which is made up of shelf after shelf of yarn. "Where's the sewing machines? Do you have brochures or something?"

"Well this is a higher end model." She motions to one of the tables where there's a sewing machine that looks like it's part computer. "What do you sew? Do you embroider? Or mostly hem?"

"Oh, I don't sew," the man replied quickly. "This is for my mom. I want to buy my mom a sewing machine."

"Well what does your mom sew? Does she do embroidery--"

"Oh I don't know."

"Well I don't know your mother either, sir."

"Well how much does a sewing machine cost?"

"This is our highest end model and it costs seventy-one-ninety-nine."

Behind his dark glasses I spy the man's eyes bulging. "Seven thousand one hundred and ninety-nine dollars?! For a sewing machine!?"

"It's a very good sewing machine, that's why sir."

"Seven thousand dollars??! That's like buying a car already!"

"Well, this is our high-end model. What does your mom sew?"

"I don't know, but I can't spend seven thousand dollars on a sewing machine. No way."

"Well what does your mom sew?"

"I don't know."

"Well I don't know your mom either sir."

"OK. Thanks." And then he abruptly turned around and left.

Finally, sensing an opportunity to interject, I held up the two skeins of yarns I'd chosen and said, "Can I just pay for these?"

Really, though, it was an interesting clash of characters. The man was obviously inept when it came to all things related to sewing and the fiber arts (otherwise he never would've worn those dark blue shorts with the faded blue aloha shirt over a black T-shirt and some kind of faded baseball cap).

And the woman, while undoubtedly passionate about her craft (I thank God for her providing me with a place to buy Brown Sheep brand yarn, something only a committed yarn snob/enthusiast would stock on this island), she had to be one of the worst salespeople I'd ever seen in action.

I was remiss to blame Li Po for my headache. Actually I was sarcastic. Duh, couldn't you tell?

What really caused my headache, I think, was eating five handfuls of Jelly Belly jelly beans before going to sleep last night. I am 80 percent sure this is true because I had three more handfuls today and began to feel ill again.

My dad is feeling uncommonly affectionate towards Li Po. The two of them are "wrestling" now. Wrestling with Li Po, who's the size of a large rabbit, basically consists of pushing him around and then flipping him onto his back and holding him down while he kicks frantically. Li Po likes the wrestling, yes he does.

He and my dad have also worked out an "arrangement" that suits both of them while my mom is at work. Li Po stands by the door until my dad opens it and chains him outside. And they are both happy.


The knitting is finally getting to me. I drop stitches left and right and haven't come up with a consistent technique for holding the yarn while I knit. Ugh.

On a brighter note, I finished my "Ribbed for her Pleasure" scarf and will post a picture as soon as I have access to my camera again. The scarf's got some scars (aka dropped stitches). You can tell we really went to battle.

Sunday, December 05, 2004


I think Li Po gave me a cold.

Last night, he wasn't feeling well. We all knew he wasn't feeling well because when my dad and brother went through their usual routine of harassing him as he slept --- stomping loudly, waving their hands frantically in front of his face --- he didn't open his eyes and growl like he normally would. And when my brother finally bribed him awake with a treat, he didn't immediately gobble it when my brother finally gave it to him.

We all saw him pause over the treat, and we had NEVER seen him pause over a treat.

Then he started gagging.

This morning I woke up with a headache.

Thanks Li Po, for sharing :op

Saturday, December 04, 2004

So my department is made up of a bunch of Scrooges. You can imagine their reaction when the sign showed up on the staff bulletin board: Sign up for Christmas Party Talent Show. And then in smaller print it went on to explain if someone or a group of someones from each department didn't volunteer for the talent show, the department head would be automatically nominated.

My department head is the guy who screamed at the lady who brought tinsel near the Festivus Pole.

At one of our irregular department meetings, a bunch of us started teasing him about, "So what you going to perform? You ready to get up there?"

He said no, no way was he doing anything.

"It's mandatory," piped up Kim, one of my coworkers. "If no one volunteers, you have to. But it'll be really, really fun."

Moregrumbling and then my boss said, "Who's dumb idea was this anyway?"


And then Kim timidly raised her hand.

That's right. The person who suggested the uber fun talent show came from my own department. That's right. The person who suggested doing something fun came from my own department. I didn't know whether to admire her independent spirit or scoff at the sheer stupidity of basically stabbing the rest of her department in the back.

Because everyone around the table promptly began groaning and saying they didn't like the idea.

"But it'll be really, really fun I promise," Kim kept saying.

Come to think of it, she usually spends her smoke breaks with people outside our own department. Ah, that explains it.

Friday, December 03, 2004

Bah humbug

One of my friends, and a former employee of the place where I work, e-mailed to say she and her fiance had gotten a beagle puppy and named him Bambu.

This caused much eye-rolling around the office.

"Beagles are loud," Brian said. "I had a neighbor who had a beagle and that thing would not shut up."

"Well, it's really cute," I replied. "But she says beagles are prone to being overweight."

"Fat and loud, sounds like a white trash dog," Bobby said.

This made Brian laugh.

It should come as no surprise, after reading the above conversation, that my department is the only one in the company that is NOT getting into the Christmas spirit.

In fact, almost as soon as I stepped into the office the other day, Brenda pounced on me with a petition that would require one of the other departments to turn down the volume on the stereo playing Christmas carols. Every single person in my department hated the Christmas carols and said it prevented them from thinking and was interfering with their writing. The only exception was me and the photographer, who sit farthest away from the music and so can barely hear it.

Even though I was nuetral on the topic I signed the petition because I didn't think it was unreasonable to have them lower the music. After all, they didn't have to shut it off completely.

Actually, the people in my department have been bitching about the Christmas music for years. DECADES perhaps. Maybe before I was even born. That's how long it's been going on. In fact, when my boss saw the boss from the other department hauling the Christmas tree in and one of the girls in another department walked by gushing, "Ooooh that tree smells good!" my boss glowered and muttered, "Oh great, now they're going to drag that stereo out and start playing that damned Christmas music too loud again."

Last year, I suppose in protest to all the Christmas joy, my boss taped a piece of paper on the aluminum pole next to my desk. It read, "Festivus Pole." And when one of the girls came skipping over with the red and green tinsel (I wouldn't be surprised if she was wearing a Santa hat too) and offered to decorate it, my boss shot out of seat and snapped, "No! No! There will be no decorating of the Festivus pole!"

The woman backed off, but as she went I heard her mutter, "When do we get to the Feats of Strength? I think someone should tackle him."

That pretty much sums up the dichotomy between us and every other department.

One from the craft world

I was telling Chris about this last night:

It's a toaster purse with a toast coin purse inside. These crafty people are unbelievable.

To find more cute "one of a kind" stuff like this go here.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

A different world

As if you didn't already notice, I go through phases. The picture phase, where I'm always scouting around with a camera. The TV phase where I get addicted to shows like LOST, which I really shouldn't be watching all by myself. And now this crafty phase.

It's interesting to sort of get immersed in whatever it is. I remember when every single day I'd spend hours watching MTV, VH-1 and Nick at Nite. I knew all about the Real World cast and who was having the best or worst week ever, etc. I probably could've aced any pop culture quiz going at the time.

It's the same with this crafty thing. I've discovered a whole new world. There are TONS of people, it turns out, who are making trendy home-made stuff. Only they don't call it homemade. Homemade sounds cheap and boring. No, they call their stuff "one of a kind". There are monster dolls and doughnut dolls and dolls shaped like pieces of bread and tampons. There are people selling X-rated cross stitch patterns and others selling hand-made Lego earrings. There are people who spin their own yarn and people who turn yarn into felt.

I never realized all of this existed, and was so big. It really is like belonging to a sub-culture.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

I really wanted to post about something other than knitting

But that's what I happen to be into right now. *Shrug.*

Garter stitch (your basic knit stitch):

Stocking stitch (combination of garter stitch plus purl stitch):