Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy 2007


Welcome to the New Year. Let's hope that this one is full of joy.

Microsoft Sucks
I can't tell you how many times I've said, heard or read this statement, but any of you who have had any exposure to their piece-of-shit products, knows it's true.

My latest story isn't shocking or awful, but it sure did put a dent in my ability to get things done, as I had to spend about five hours getting access to my checking account on-line again.

I have been a long-time user of Microsoft Money, my latest version being Money 2000. Converting from a prior version of Money was painful and never really worked, but for years, I was able to successfully use the software for tracking all my accounts and pay my bills on-line. This past Friday, I tried to download my latest account information, but my bank no longer supports Money 2000. With bills to pay, and not wanting to write out manual checks, I decided to pay for, and download the latest version of Money, which is Money 2007. All went well, until I tried to install, and found out you need to have Windows XP to support it. Of course, I have Windows 2000.

Hours later, I finally had my refund from Microsoft (except for a stupid $10 download fee), and I was able to download and install Intuit's Quicken and set up all my accounts back on line.

Quicken is, like it's company's name would suggest, a little more intuitative than Money, but mostly, they both do the same thing. The biggest difference is that I don't hate Intuit, while I do hate Microsoft.

Family That Knows Me
When Christmas rolls around, it's nice to have friends and family that know me well enough to give me things I really like.

While at my sister-out-of-law's this past Christmas, I opened a box to find a Lands-End, Fair-Isle cardigan. The colors weren't exactly good for me, and the size was too large. Something had clearly gone terribly wrong. I know my sister-out-of-law knows better than bringing coals to Newcastle.

I come to find out that this is my brother-out-of-law's favorite work sweater that he has worn through the elbow of, and my gift is the challenge of trying to fix it for him.



I know some readers might think this is a terrible gift, but my unlawful family knows me better. They knew I would love the chance to try and make this sweater wearable again. And don't get me wrong, they also got me some very lovely other gifts (this is the same family that lives near WEBS, and has given me gift certificates there in the past).

I have already attempted my first repair, by grafting in the missing fabric, but I'm not pleased with how it's turned out. I'm thinking that I will try and remove the bottom half of the sleeve, and repair all the damaged rows, and then graft it back on. I have yarn that is close in colors to the damaged section, but not a perfect match. We'll see how it works out.

Current Knitting
I did finally finish the Kaleidescope jacket, using the Araucania yarn, instead of Unicorn's Shetland yarn.



I am extremely happy with how it turned out, and I can't wait to give it to my friend Nora today. While it's a little late, I think she'll be glad to have waited for it nonetheless.

New Project
I've started two new projects.

First one is a man's colorblock sweater, using the same colors as my friend's Araucania jacket. As I was knitting her sweater, I realized these colors would be great for a man's sweater.

I also started a finer gauge, man's pullover, using a very dark tweed that I got at WEBS last year. The color is almost black with flecks of lighter colors.

I'll post pictures of both in my next blog entry.

15 comments:

anne marie in philly said...

I'm first - yea!

happy new year to you and thaddeus!
may this year take you on some exciting adventures.

I am not a fan of online banking. I have seen my boss get frustrated (windows xp and quickbooks) when he tries to pay bills.

so I do my personal banking the old fashioned way - hand written checks with phone access to my account and direct deposit of my bi-monthly pittance.

nora's jacket is lovely; I like the random colorblocks.

more, more, more...

Anonymous said...

Your work is impressive as usual. Fabulous way to inspire me for the New Year.

Anna M

afrindiemum said...

the sweater is beautiful! i can't wait to hear her reaction.

i'm so sorry about gage. i know how much it hurts.

Holly Burnham said...

I saw Nora's jacket when you were working on it and I am so happy to have stopped in today to see the finished project.

Michelene said...

Joe, if it's not to presumptuous of me to make a suggestion, what if you remove the same section from both sleeves and rework the blue-grey bit in a new color?
Happy New Year!

handknitbyafailedfeminist said...

The jacket is gorgeous! I will say a prayer for the land's end sweater, hope you can make it whole.

Jamie Fritz said...

happy new year to you and your family.

that jacket is amazing. I'm sure she'll love it.

I recently rescued a friend's sweater from wearholes...nothing that elaborate, but she was delighted with it. Good luck on yours!

Marilyn said...

The jacket looks wonderful and I'm sure Nora will love it. How can she not? If she doesn't, I'll take it off your hands.

Repairing handknits is one challenge I can live without. Bless you for your patience. I once repaired my Manos Southwestern jacket and that was only because I had some leftovers and it was a jacket I had made myself. Never again. Never. Not for love. Not for money. Not for sex.

Happy New Year to you and Thaddeus. Time for brunch at the Stockton Inn as a January bluesbreaker? Huh?

Tres said...

Hey, landed here after getting stuck in a vicious guy knitter blogs surfing loop. :)

Anyway, and at the risk of sounding like a shill for Apple, have you thought about switching to a Mac? There are a variety of really awesome and easy to use home financial tracking applications for the Mac and if you get a newer one you can run Windows on the damn thing as well (if it doesn't make you feel too dirty). I just got a new MacBook and it wasn't too expensive and it's cute as a button!

I was a long time Microsoft user (I even worked there for seven years) but since switching to the Mac I've just become so much happier. Seriously, it's been a quality of life improvement. :p

The sweater is hella inspiring. I got "Knitting With Balls" for x-mas and I think I'm finally ready to shed the weight of the 3 year long never finished scarf for the boyfriend and try starting a new project. I think I'm going to attempt a wallet. Wish me luck.

Ann said...

Ah the dreaded Microsoft phase out. Where they decide to cease support for a product and force all their clients to shift. Don't ya love it?! ..insert irony here..

After also toiling professionally in those fields for yonks, I also left the dark side and now live in the land of Apple. And if I really HAVE to, I can actually use Windoze on my innocent Apple (think AutoCad) using Bootcamp, heck, if I really want to I can virtualize DR DOS or darned near any other OS. But I can live happily in the land of Unix and Apple, running my network, and not having to twiddle bits and curse all day. 8-)

And I already spent my Webs gift certificate!

May said...

Just an idea for the next repair when there is no matching yarn anywhere, 'Make the fabric whole' with any suitable yarn available; apply an ultra suade elbo patch. The ultra suade comes in colors, is washable, not very bulky like a leather patch. My source of
'us' scraps has closed. (sob)

Teresa said...

I use Money 2002, and had a version of Quicken which I played around with- the only reason I didn't upgrade was it wouldn't import my accounts, I needed 2004 or later. Did you not have this problem? I didn't want to shell out the $$ to pay for an upgrade so I could switch.

Franklin said...

File the Kaleidoscope Jacket under "S" for "Successes, Complete." It's beautiful.

Kathy said...

Nora's sweater is AMAZING, QJ. I *love* it. I'm also just agog over the volume of high quality work coming off your needles.

Its been a while since I stopped by to check you out so let me say now I like the new look here!

Liz said...

Kaleidescope - simply breathtaking, as in "sitting at computer and gasping." Go, you!