Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Weekend o' Thrills

It's not as though I didn't warn him.

On Friday evening I was still not quite finished with everything that needed to be ready for YarnCon on Saturday morning. Not my fault, honestly. Just you try putting together display booth with a crazed presidential candidate throwing a fit on the living room rug because her campaign manager not only failed to secure her a slot in the televised debates, but also ignored direct orders to open the campaign ads with the candidate's own harmonica rendition of "America, The Beautiful."

Anyhow, Tom said that in order to save me transit time he'd be happy to provide a ride to Loopy and hang out while I mingled, then drive me home again. Tom is not a knitter, but he learned the rudiments of the language by watching over my shoulder as I wrote the little book. He knows which end of the needle is the business end. He felt confident in his ability to survive an hour in a yarn shop unscathed.

We got down to Printer's Row about ten minutes before the scheduled start of the party and the place was already seething like a tank of touchy barracudas. Struggling through the knot of frenzied shoppers near the cash desk, I shouted to Tom to keep his head low–books and yarn were flying all over the place.

The crowd would have blown the doors right off the old Loopy but fit tolerably well inside the new, larger location. Among the wonders is a wall of Cascade that could induce palpitations in the sensitive, which indeed seems to be happening in this picture.

New Loopy

At the center of the uproar, serenely ensconced in the book nook like a primal Knitting Goddess, was Ann Shayne–the Dixon half of Mason-Dixon Knitting, signing the team's gorgeous Knitting Outside the Lines.

Ann at Loopy

Notice that Ann, who is otherwise an absolutely lovely person, used this photo opportunity to compare the relative statures of her book and mine. I would take umbrage, except everyone knows that Size Doesn't Matter.

Tom and I got separated for a while, but I eventually found him near the door of the sock yarn room. He looked slightly disoriented and was nursing a bite on one hand, suffered by accidentally reaching too close to somebody's basket of Lorna's Laces. The doctor's predicts a full recovery, through the nervous tic may be with us for several weeks.

The next morning was YarnCon 2008, greatly expanded from the first edition in 2007. This year, the vendors spilled out of the central hall of the Pulaski Fieldhouse

Yarn Con Main Hall

and into a second room, the gymnasium.

I got a plummy spot just inside the door of the gym, which makes YarnCon '08 the first time I've ever enjoyed myself on a basketball court. No, wait. The second. But I won't tell you about the first time because my mother might be reading this.

Our centerpiece was Polly, a creation of the Windy City Knitting Guild who made her d├ębut a couple years ago at the Winter Delights Stitching Salon. Polly's voluminous skirt keeps growing as knitters continue to work on it.

Yarn Con Polly

I lost count of the number of folks who stopped by to say hello and check out the display of original panels from It Itches. Dozens? Hundreds? What I will never forget is that you laughed, and after drawing the pictures in solitude it was a relief to find they could make you laugh out loud.

My own selection of souvenir photos is paltry, but there's a great photo pool here for you to swim in.

Shop Notes
  • Somebody must have started something behind the scenes, because over the weekend I got about a dozen e-mails entreating the re-issue of the tree ornaments from 2005-2007. As once correspondent succinctly put it, "It's not my fault I didn't buy the 2005 ornament in 2005, because in 2005 nobody knew who the hell you were." I can't argue with that. So for a limited time (through December) and just this once, I've put the old ornaments back up in the Cafe Press shop (see the main page) for those who want to fill in gaps.

    Ornaments

  • The stock of gift enclosure cards in the Etsy shop will be replenished as soon as the new printing arrives. I thought I'd my initial order would be sufficient for two months. Oops.

  • Guys with Yarn is on its way up from the printers and should be available in about two days, so keep your shirts on...although they didn't.

30 comments:

Patti said...

LOVE the gift enclosure cards, I will be placing an order as soon as the supply is replenished. I'm envious of your fibery weekend. I won't have one of those till Stitches West in February. Any plans for a book tour, in the meantime?

Geek Knitter said...

Honestly Franklin, how could you lose track of Tom that way? That's just unkind!

Samoofish said...

It was lovely to meet you in person at YarnCon and actually touch the little book. I'm looking forward to receiving my very own copy. Congratulations again!

Sue said...

that looks like a whole lotta fun. MAybe gloves are in order for next year?

Harriet said...

Wow, that Yarn Con sure looks like it was fun. May have to organize a road trip from the Detroit area to Chicago next year.

Katie K said...

Besides being funny, your line quality and design sense are first rate. Go Franklin!

Jasmin said...

All this campaign talk leaves me thinking. If Dolores is elected, will we be singing, "Hail to the Sheep?"

LittleWit said...

Sounds like you had a stellar weekend. :)

Rachel H said...

Ahem. *I* knew who you were in 2005, darling.

Sarah said...

See you Saturday!

Cara said...

Even knowing it hasn't been released yet, I had a quick look for it in both knitting and humor today. You know, just in case they cheated and put it out early or something...

Mari said...

Heeey, I knew you in 2005! OK, I didn't KNOW you personally but at least your web person. Hmph! How rude to say that "nobody" knew you... I'm not nobody!

This year's ornament is the cutest, BTW.

Lynae said...

OMG, I cannot believe you posted a picture of me on your blog!

Maybe, we were talking about Tom and not Cascade?

--Deb said...

Those ornaments? I have the lion and lamb and liked it so much, we didn't put it away with the other ornaments when we took down the Christmas tree. It's been hanging from a magnet on the refrigerator ever since!

Marianne said...

Hey, why can't Polly run for veep? She's obviously not going to argue with Dolores; she dresses way more stylishly than SP, and her skirts are longer than anyone else's coat tails.

Diane H said...

Re-issue the ornaments? My thoughts exactly - and as I should suit the action to the word - looking forward to the ornaments in real life.

Tenacious said...

All 4 ornaments?! Merry Christmas to me!

And I'm waiting for more gift enclosure cards, too - they look absolutely perfect for enclosing with my holiday knit gifts. Especially the space for how to care for the knits - sigh, but how to guarantee they'll read it and remember it?

DebbieKnitter said...

...as sure as I am that this comment will probably be lost in a sea of others...I'm equally as sure that I simply MUST post a thank-you. It's been many years since I have been intrigued enough by words to get well, almost giddy over them. So giddy that I wanted more, more words, more writing, more knitting, more all of it.

Ann said...

Good things in small packages . . . !!!!!

Cannot wait for my copy to show up.

Habit for President! Such a delight to see you finally in real, ackshul life.

CatBookMom said...

Zipped right over to get the full set of ornaments. Thanks for the heads'-up. And my copy of the little book will be here as soon as Interweave Press can manage it; they promised. ;)

BTW, I'd really love a Dragon Yarn Hoard button/pin to keep my tote bags safe from knitterly thieves. Hint, hint!

Kay said...

So sorry I wasn't there. You really need to meet the not-serene half of the team to get the full picture.

And I missed the sneak peek at "II".

NEXT TIME!

xo Kay

susan dampeer said...

how does one find out when yarn con is next year?

Norma said...

Oh, but Dear Franklin....size does matter. But there IS a place for a little sumpin-sumpin now and then. Like a bit of spice. Hee.

anne marie in philly said...

I also "knew" you in 2005 and purchased the little elf ornament waaaay back then. currently awaiting the latest JOY bauble...

just look at how far you have come since then, mr. celebrity!

smooches!

knititch said...

bought the christmas ornament for alba and for tradition and for alba, and a bunch of lovely cards that i will send to my aunt in exchange for gary oberle's cards that my aunt sends to copenhagen all the time. the last i sent back to the us with a quotation from the knittingcurmudgeon's blog. what comes around goes around.

i am so happy for you basically.

Laura said...

I love a man who can make me laugh and you, sir, have made me laugh quite a number of times.

On the other hand, the Flickr slide show made me cry. All those vendors... all that yarn... so close and yet so far.

soxanne said...

Can't wait for the little book - are you going to be in Minnesota for a signing? I was waiting to see if I should purchase it at a sponsoring shop ...

In the meantime, while I'm not suggesting I agree with the title, there are those who would disagree with your opinion on size:

Why size matters : from bacteria to blue whales / John Tyler Bonner / Princeton University Press, c2006.

Also, I hope Tom is feeling better!

Anne O'Nymous said...

xmion"Tom ...looked slightly disoriented and was nursing a bite on one hand, suffered by accidentally reaching too close to somebody's basket of Lorna's Laces."

You do see the subtext, don't you? The man loves his socks and wants more. They may be bigger than the feet you have usually knit for in the past (not always a bad thing, nudge, nudge, wink, wink), but they are clearly feet that love socks from the hands and heart of Franklin.

Bgstoner said...

Love the pic of the blue nose cozy :)

Jo said...

Good lord man, what are you thinking?!

You do realize a simple bite on the hand starts off all the bad shit in zombie movies. I'd keep a close eye on Tom if I were you.

Maybe this is how the knitting bug spreads?