Sunday, March 22, 2009


My dad is a great fan of made up words. I didn't realize for quite a while that they were made up...but his whimsy certainly prepared me for reading students' papers when I taught writing, or for becoming a writer one day. Anyhow, when I was a kid, instead of saying "having humility" he would say something humbilified me or one had gotten humble or"humbility" after a particularly embarrassing mistake.

This weekend, the professor was out of town at a conference. I was on my own with the dogs and spent a lot of time working on my new mitten project. I was cruising along, feeling very good about myself. Really good about how GREAT it was coming out. Then, I looked down and realized something.

I was knitting the chart upside down. Now, this was because I'd turned the book upside down. On purpose. I realized this while speaking with the professor on the phone late at night. He urged me not to rip it out immediately, but to sleep on it. (It's usually my habit to rip out a big mistake right away, as it's hard to live with once I know it's there.) If it's a little mistake, I live with it. I move on. As the Persian carpet makers concluded, only the Almighty is perfect. Leaving a small mistake is ok with me.

I listened to his advice. I slept on it. In the AM, I looked at it again. Doh! Stupid! After feeling completely humbilified and embarrassed again, I ripped it out. I put the book and the chart right side up. I moved on. With considerable knitting time this afternoon, I'm now further along on my first mitten then when I ripped it out the first time--and this time, the pattern is right side up. While knitting, I listened to The Uncommon Reader, a novella, read by the author, which I am heartily enjoying and can recommend.

I also succeeded, this weekend, in finally figuring out how to dry all my laundry outside. This is part of my effort to avoid using the clothes dryer, which uses tons of energy. You'd think, (at least, I thought) that drying one's clothes out on a clothes line wouldn't be difficult, since all our foremothers did it. Hah. I've been able to manage a couple of loads, but the whole week's wash? Getting all of one's clothes washed and dried in one day in the South of the U.S.A. can be a trial. If it's a nice day, above freezing, and you hang your wash out? It's still probably very humid. It makes it take longer to get everything dry. Today, I managed to get 4 loads of wash out and drying before about 11:30 AM. It turns out that early wash helps...along with a low humidity day, some sunshine, and a small breeze. Yet again, I prove through hard research that our foremothers got up early and were smart cookies. It's no wonder that they didn't wash clothes all that's a lot of work.

Note: Since this was a lesson in my own humbility (humility), I cropped this photo so as not to include any embarrassing underthings that might mortify my shy professor. After all, this was my weekend to get in touch with my inner upside-down embarrassment. Not his. :)

PS: Willow is another smart cookie. Note the blog tour information on my sidebar... I hope this is helpful! I hope you'll take the tour with me!

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Blogger Willow said...

Oh yay, that sidebar will make it so easy to check in on the interviews! Thanks!

I live in an area that has an association that forbids us to dry laundry outside. Harumpf! So I get around it by drying inside on a rack. Not everything, but it's a start. AND, we think we'll be rebels and ask the association to change the rules to allow for 'smart, green living' here. heheheh I do envy you the clothesline. I seem to remember my mom telling me that it was a sign of a good housewife years and years ago that be the first one with laundry hung on the line on Monday morning. I would never have won that award...

March 22, 2009 at 7:42 PM  
Blogger Willow said...

hmmm, somehow that sentence went awry. I think it should say ...years and years ago TO be the first one...

March 22, 2009 at 7:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I went to turn off the older monitor on the computer my visiting mother was using yesterday, because it's such an energy hog, when I suddenly realized I don't have to be so apologetic for the extra electricity--I'm producing it on my roof! We went solar this year. Now, to get an electric dryer...

March 23, 2009 at 1:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kudos on your laundry line! I'm fortunate enough to live in the country, where I can string my double line between trees and hang up to two full loads at once.

March 23, 2009 at 3:14 PM  

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