Those durn ornamental flowering pear trees (Pyrus calleryana) are blooming again. They may be pretty, but my sinuses are having a wall-eyed fit. Commonly called Bradford pears. I am not alone in my antipathy to them. Invasive is right. I counted over twenty of them in the five minute drive to my mom’s house. My system is so full of antihistamines and decongestants I’m like the zombie apocalypse. The picture at left was taken a couple of days ago. Today was rainy and foggy. So foggy, in fact, that when I was on the way to my mom’s house, two blocks away was like a fog bank.
Don’t know what these plants are but they’re wild and they’re all over some of the lawns around, including my mom’s. The grass people use for lawns here is a species of Bermuda grass, which dies off in the fall and comes back from the roots in the spring. Long about this time of year, people set their lawn mower blades way down and “scalp” off last year’s dead growth practically to ground level so the new growth can come out. So, that whitish stuff is dead Bermuda grass. The flowers on this plant are teensy and look a lot like snapdragons.
There’s this house up on 19th Street, the “main drag” that runs along one side of Texas Tech University — your classic southern style “mansion,” two storey, red brick with white pillars in front. It was built in 1928. Because 19th is such a large, busy street, and there’s no curbside parking on it, the people that owned the house had a semicircular drive put in. They excavated a pile of dirt in order to do it, and instead of having the dirt hauled off and the lawn leveled out again, the lady of the house had them just smooth out the piles of dirt and plant grass because the berm of dirt deadened the traffic noise. The landscaping people planted a bunch of early spring blooming ‘bubs’ (that’s Texan for “bulbs”) — crocuses, daffodils, narcissus, snowdrops, etc. — all over the berm. They just scattered them about and mixed them up. The bulbs come up and bloom and are done by the time the Bermuda grass comes out. I think it’s a cool idea.
I binge-watched “The Witcher” ‘s first season on Netflix yesterday and worked on my “Mrs. Crocombe’s Braided Delight” shawl. I had to fast forward through some of the monsters and a lot of the battle scenes. (It’s very violent and gory.) Yes, Henry Cavill is very drule-worthy and well worth watching, but I can do without all the flying blood, guts and body parts. So if that kind of stuff bothers you, be forewarned; it is very graphic. Also, there’s nudity of both sexes front and back (although not full frontal male nudity), so if that bothers you, be forewarned. (Yes, I did rerun the whole bathtub scene several times. Bite me.) If it is true, as purported, that Cavill did all his own stunts, I hope his costumes had a lot of padding. He got thrown about and bounced off walls an awful lot.
I’m not sure if I can access Star Trek: Picard in a way that will enable me to binge watch it on my TV, but I think I can watch it on line. The reviews I’ve seen of it are good. I’m seriously starting to think it might be more worthwhile to just cancel my cable TV and subscribe to Netflix, Amazon, Starz and HBO. The cost would be about the same. All I need to get them on my TV is internet access. Cable TV has so little worth watching, never mind anything I’m interested in watching, and I can’t see paying for something I don’t watch because it’s mostly utter junk.
I test-fitted the “Assssin’s Daughter” shawl and decided I’m going to use all seven skeins of yarn. Both it and the Mrs. Crocombe’s shawl are now too big to work on at the computer, which is why I was binge watching stuff on TV.
I need to organize my yarn stash, and while I’m at it, I need to go through my embarrassingly large pile of WIPs* and do a FO or frog **. I need to start knitting hats for the cancer center again, too. I’ve got several hats that need finishing and a whole plastic storage tub full of donated yarn.
I think I’m going to have to haul my folding banquet table out from under the bed to block shawls on. The floor is the only other place big enough, and I have no business doing any kind of kneeling on the knee I had replaced. Because the shawls I need to block are all made from acrylic yarn and I plan to kill the yarn, there’s going to be a wet tea-towel and a steam iron involved, so that lets out my dining table. I’ve got two boxes of the blocking mat tiles. I may need to get more T-pins, though. I’ve got several shawls that need blocking. I’ll have to do all of them at once, and I should do it before the weather starts getting hot. I’ll also have to locate a spot where there’s enough floor space to set the table up — preferably somewhere close to an electrical outlet . Now, what did I do with those roundtoits . . . ?
*WIPs -- Works In Progress**FO or Frog -- either Finish the Object or completely unravel (frog) it and recycle the yarn into another project.