Chewing on Granny Squares

My knitting colleague E. made the (arguably) goofy decision to refresh her crocheting skills by taking on a granny squares blanket.

It’s a great idea for using up a ton of scrap yarn.

It’s not a great idea if you enjoyed the level of sanity you had when you started.

She quickly ran into the classic self-randomizing problem: given 20 different colored yarns of different weights, how do you put 3 different ones in each square while trying to keep the colors as random as possible? Sounds easy enough, but after 15 or so squares, it gets tricky. If you’re aiming for randomization, the last thing you want is a big diagonal of purple in your blanket when you’re done.

So E. appealed to me and asked me to write her a “script” to randomize her colors. I was on board, look forward to some Python/Django fun before I realized that what I’d been handed was a graph coloring problem with some fun restraints. (Turns out it was easy, but fun to think through.)

Before I get into the technical bits, go make a blanket or two. Then go find some esoteric method to contact me (or comment here) and let me know what you think, especially if you run into an issue.
Continue reading Chewing on Granny Squares

Moving: Done

As this is posting, Greg is handling the final details of vacating our old house. It took a week and a half to clean that house suitably–a sure sign that the house was too ridiculously large in the first place.

Oh, well. The me of today is not the me of two years ago.

Unfortunately, my shoulder wasn’t completely better yesterday despite being done with the steroids, and an hour medfitation, half an hour sitting and discussing a book, and over three hours of climbing around cleaning house last night have reinjured my shoulder. Could be a different injury: I still have the jerky rotation, but my shoulder burns and there’s an inconsistent tingly feeling down my arm, both of which are new. My range of motion’s no worse, though.

(As a practical question, I’d love ideas on how to meditate if I can’t sit upright or lie down without a lot of pain.)

So I’m basically one-handed today, which is the bee’s bum. I did eat a tasty, locally-grown smoked porkchop for dinner last night, though.

Continue reading Moving: Done

Weekly Linkage: Friday Fon

That’s, um, fon.

I’m currently taking an evening off from former-house cleaning to sit and chill with my busted shoulder. An old, old injury reared its head when we moved, and my left arm can’t raise more than about 20 degrees from straight down without quite a bit of pain. Lifting is a no-go. I’m very lucky that my right shoulder (also generally wonky) didn’t give way, too.

This week’s been chock full of coding, moving, fun food, and a bit of escapism, and my reading probably reflects that:
Continue reading Weekly Linkage: Friday Fon

Time for the Unscheduled

I know an increasing number of folks now who are either unemployed or self-employed, and I find that as envious as I am of their ability to make excellent use of their time, I have to actively work to avoid being burned by their lack of sense of time.

Or self-burning:

Me: Hey, So-and-So, did you hear back about that project proposal you submitted a while back?
So-and-So: No. Maybe I should check on that.
Me: Oh. It’s been, like, months.
So-and-So: Yeah… It’d be nice to get that project.
Me: Like… someday?

Continue reading Time for the Unscheduled