Sunday, April 20, 2008

Dickensian Urchin Mitts

Fingerless Mitts
Originally uploaded by miss_reecie
When I was growing up in England my Aunt Sue used to baby-sit me on Saturday mornings when my parents were working at the Petticoat Lane Markets in London. We used to play lots of board games, but our favourite was The Dickens Game. I used to read a lot too and she had a beautiful first edition of A Child's History of England which I always admired. Years later I finally managed to find this wonderful edition in Berkelouw Books.

It seemed a fitting match for these mitts which I whipped up over the weekend in between essay writing. They're the Garter Stitch Mitts from Ysolda Teague. I used Grignasco Tango (the poor woman's Rowan Felted Tweed) in grey for added urchin-ness, and still have about a third of the ball left. The concept of grafting 42 garter stitches quite frankly terrified me (i hate grafting) but it was surprisingly easier than stockinette grafting, and looks really neat.

So now I'm off to beg for pie. "I'd kiss you but doctor says I'm sick".

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


okay my new favourite website is The Proceedings of the Athanasius Kirchner Society. They collate various media items about all sorts of wacky facts about science, nature, and general esoterica. For example, did you know that a 405 year old clam is officially the world's oldest animal? Or that the face of the Rescue Annie doll they use for CPR training is based on a death mask from a woman found in the Seine in 1900?

Pass the Laudanum

In my ongoing quest to become a Victorian urchin, for my next knit I'm going to whip up some of these Garter Stitch Mitts which will no doubt be useful to wear while begging for pie at people's windows on my way to the workhouse.

Also I'm making a mad dash to Kinokuniya in my lunch break tomorrow to pick up some recommended steampunk fiction. It's in the young adult section, but lately I've been enjoying young adult stuff a lot, perhaps because my poor little brain can't really take in much else after days reading High Court cases. Anyway, the books I'll be purchasing are: -
Any steampunk aficionados out there? Has anyone read these, or have any other steampunk recommendations? It has rapidly become my new favourite subgenre.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

hot (literally) restaurant review

Sichuan Spicy Restaurant, 1-9 Glebe Point Road, Glebe

I don't think Sichuan is reknowned for subtlety. The interior of this restaurant is quite garish and very red. The chairs are highly ornate, yet cushionless (ow). The waitstaff wear traditional Chinese dress, again all red (which makes their yellow smiley face badges seem slightly strange - sort of like David Lynch meets Studio Ghibli). Anyway, the place was jam packed, but we didn't care because we'd booked.
After wading through the full-colour encyclopaedic menu, we ordered what turned out to be a really good combination of dishes, considering we were flying by the seat of our pants a little.
Smoked duck - fantastic. One of the best duck dishes I've had in a long time. Nice juicy meat, crispy skin and a great smoky flavour (hence the title).
Kung Bao Chicken - Not as spicy and a bit sweeter than some I've had, but overall a good all rounder in the stir fry department.
Beef on Hot Rocks with Sichuan Pepper Sauce - this dish is actually served on hot coals. Apparently some people try to eat the coals. Don't eat the coals. The meat was super tender and the coating of Sichuan pepper made our mouths tingle (but in a good way). Lots of yummy herbs (mmm coriander) and onions.
Pork and Leek Dumplings (steamed) - not as good as my favourite dumplings in the whole word (to be found at "Crazy Grapes" restaurant in Chinatown) but still pretty good.
Green Beans with Mince - this was my favourite dish (and not just because I chose it). The beans were fried with some yum chilli sauce and served with pork mince. Delish!
We polished off all the plates, and I was just full enough.
Tsing Tao beer is the perfect compliment to this food, although a minor crisis eventuated when the waiter began bringing the main dishes BEFORE the beer!!!! Luckily after some pointed and desperate looks in the direction of the bar area, our beers arrived a couple of minutes later.
Valuewise, it's great! It ended up costing $25 per head (including alcohol).
Three out of five of our party were suffering hangovers, and by the end of the meal they were considerably perkier. Success!!
I think i'll definitely be back for another visit. As one of our party pointed out, you could go there about 25 times and still not have ordered everything on their massive menu. Variety is the spice of life!!

Saturday, April 05, 2008

free at last?

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere", Martin Luther King Jr, Letter from Birmingham Jail 1963.

I don't think I'd be in law school right now if it wasn't for the principles this man stood for and so courageously fought for. He was murdered 40 years ago today.