A cool wave! I went out to pull weeds, and enjoyed it so much I could hardly bring myself to go to work. We are fairly busy at work. Not so busy that we don’t spend any time talking about how it seems as though it should be busier than it is, but still pretty busy. Busy enough that I am tired at the end of the day, and that I start the days thinking about how tired I will be, so that I skip going to the gym and just sit down and pull weeds instead.

Part of it is emotional fatigue, of course, from conversations like this:

“You don’t have the plan book I want. Someone was supposed to get it for me, and they never called me back.”
“I’m sorry. What kind is it? Ward? Whaley? Doolittle?”
“I’ll know it when I see it. I buy it here every year.”
“Well, then, I’ll just check the computer to see what you bought last year. Your name?…. I’m sorry. We show no record of your ever having shopped here.”
“I shop here all the time. My name should be there.”
“Do you have your old one? Perhaps you could look and see what kind it is and let us get it for you.”
“I don’t have time for that. Someone was supposed to have done this for me and they never called me back.”

Those who are not in service jobs may be thinking that the discussion would have been improved by the addition of a few statements like “You use the same plan book every year and you don’t know what kind it is?” or “You liar,” but this is not the case. At this time of year, teachers are feeling a great deal of stress. Our job is to help them leave the store happier than they were when they came in. And really, if you even think things like that while talking to someone in a stressed state, it makes them feel worse. They can tell you aren’t as filled with compassion as they need you to be.

One of the teachers phrased it very well. “When I am having to deal with a lot of big things,” she said, “I find myself obssessing over small things.” In her case, the Christmas Punkydoodles. Bless her, she knew that our not having several different Christmas Punkydoodles in late July was not a serious problem, but she was also able to express her feeling that it was. And I was able to help her out. Without her getting miffed or my having to strive not to think she was being silly.

Not everyone can do that. Many of our customers, at this time of year, swear and stamp their feet.

The global shortage of Mavalus Tape was however slightly ameliorated. We received one case. I was calling the list of people who had asked for it, in the order of request, and offering them two rolls. They wanted more, so I was having to explain that we were rationing it. The Poster Queen was in favor of calling them all up and then selling it first come first served, but The Empress and I wanted to be sure that everyone would have at least a little bit. I did end up feeling hard-hearted as I refused their pleas for an extra roll for their partner and so on, but it had to be done.

Today the word will be out that there is some in town, and that we are doling it out, and people will be in trying to get it even though their names are not on the list. TGIF.

A book question for you: has anyone out there read Jon Stewart’s America? And, if so, is it worth buying in hardcover? Here’s the thing. It came out last September, so it should be ready to come out in paper, right? But instead, it is coming out in a calendar version. So I’m thinking that it won’t be out in paper till next year, or perhaps it will be too dated by then and it will never come out in paper, and there I’ll be having to buy it in hardcover when it’s already dated.

And yet, I am pretty adamant about waiting for the paperback version of books. I am still waiting for The Da Vinci Code to hit paper. My son-in-law is just the opposite, and will not buy books in paperback. Chacun a son gout.

My son-in-law is back on his submarine. I had a long talk with #1 daughter on the phone last night, which gave me the opportunity to do some frogging with relatively little suffering. No, I did not frog Brooklyn. I frogged the Lotus shawl. I discovered a pair of dropped stitches. And while picking up stitches from a few rows back is no big deal in stockinette, it is impossible in a complex lace. So I frogged the Lotus clear back to the foundation row, and will begin again. As for Brooklyn, well, I had done enough frogging, and you had convinced me that it would be in the category of “If you can see the knitting flaw, you are too close.” So I finished the second skein. With, I am pleased to report, no tangling. If you are considering substituting yarns for Rowan Denim, you might consider either Den-M-Nit (which may actually be the generic version) as in Brooklyn, at the bottom of the picture, or Plymouth Stone Cotton, as in Picot at the top.Both seem to be working up very nicely.

Now, if you are like me and do not eat saveloys, but still want to have a chance to discuss them in order to try out the exciting new word “saveloy,” then you will like this website. That’s all about saveloys. It is not time for eating saveloys, but for breakfast, which will be buttermilk pancakes with nectarines and cinnamon, and orange juice. I must go and make it.