Tuesday, November 18, 2008

A sheep story

"Once upon a time there was a shepherd who herded his sheep in a lonesome area. Suddenly a brand new Jeep Cherokee appeared with a big cloud of dust and stopped right next to him.

The driver, a young man dressed in a Brioni suit, Cerutti shoes, Ray Ban sun glases and a tie by YSL got off the car and asked him:
'If I can guess how many sheep you have, will I get one then?'

The shepherd looks at the young man, then at his peacefully grazing sheep and calmly says: 'All right'.

The young man parks the Jeep, connects his notebook with his mobile, goes on the NASA-website, scans the area via GPS satellite navigation system, opens a database and 60 excel schedules with a vast number of formulas.
Finally he prints a 150-sided report on his Hi-Tech mini printer, turns around and says: 'You have exactly 1,586 sheep over here.'

The shepherd says: 'That´s right, go and choose a sheep.'
The young man takes a sheep and puts it into his Jeep.

The shepherd watches him and says: 'If I can guess your profession will you give me back my sheep?'
The young man answers: 'Yes sure, why not.'

The shepherd says: 'You are a management consultant.'
'That´s right, why do you know?' the young man wants to know.

'Very simple," the shepherd says, 'first of all, you come here although nobody called you. Secondly you want to have a sheep as payment for something you tell me, what I already know and, thirdly, you have no idea of what I am doing here! – And now give me back my dog!!'"


Tracking future jumpers

"A new initiative from the German Handknitting Industry aims to change consumers' minds in favour of local products. This initiative to promote wool from Germany involves several natural resources, ecological organisations and companies. Consumers can sponsor individual sheep that will provide the wool for 'their' future knitted jumper, and observe it on its meadow via a GPS tracker and Google Earth. The idea is to make the chain from the source to the end user transparent."

ETN Textile Forum, 3/2008, p.2

more details: http://www.schafpate.de

Honey, silk and gin

"To clean coloured silks, satins, woollen dresses, &c - Four ounces of soft soap, four ounces of honey, the white of an egg, a wineglassfull of gin; mix well together, and scour the article with a rather hard brush thoroughly; afterwards rinse it in cold water, leave to drain, and iron whilst quite damp."

Enquire Within Upon Everything, Herbert Jenkins Limited, London 1926, p.429

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

"a tale to fit the hole"

"... and then, while she threaded her darning needle with the right worsted,
she would fish about in her memory for a tale to fit the hole."

Eleanor Farjeon, The Old Nurse's Stocking Basket, 1931

quoted in Ruth Thomas, Things to Make and Mend, Faber & Faber, London 2008

"Altar of stranded cotton"

"Sally Tuttle loves haberdashery departments.

Sometimes she will walk into one just to gaze at its beauty: at the ribbons and feathers, the broderie anglaise, the stacked rainbows of silk and cotton. It is like admiring a mountain or a still lake. Sally stands and regards the rows of threads, the baby wools, the beads, the sequins, the poppers, the cloth-covered buttons. She is soothed by the stiff, wicker dummies modelling their cardigans; the wide strips of satin, the magazines with their racy titles (Creative Cloth! Stitching Today! Cross Stitch!). She even admires the word Haberdashery, printed on the swinging sign above her head. Haberdashery, with its hints of the Middle East and of the village hall.

There is also the fact that you hardly ever see a man in there. Haberdashery departments are havens; convents dedicated to the Patron Saint of Quiet Women, She walks into them to kneel at the altar of stranded cotton."

Ruth Thomas, Things to Make and Mend, Faber and Faber, London 2008, p.3