Sunday, November 23, 2008

I Love Living in the 21st Century!

I have been upset lately by the fact that all of the news and talk radio programs are focused on the state of the economy and politics, except for the ones that are focused on politics and the economy. Neither of those topics makes for cheerful and uplifting Television or entertainment, as you all probably know. Well, this weekend, I discovered two technological advances that have made me very happy, and may eliminate my TV News viewing....

First, Netflix. I could be one of the last people who haven't tried this, but let me say that I love it. You just put movies, or how-to DVD's, or Documentaries, or TV Series, into your queue, and they turn up like magic in your mailbox. Once you've watched them, you put them back in the mailbox, and in a couple of days, poof! Another movie (or two) to watch. This is very exciting to me because my family is notoriously bad for forgetting to return movies to the library, resulting in fines and occasional temporary revocation of our library-use priveleges, and we are even more notoriously bad for doing things like returning the case to the rental store while the disc remains in our DVD player. With Netflix, there are no late fees at all, and no cases, just envelopes. I am foreseeing the resurrection of the Family Movie and Game Night at Chez Us.

The other fabulous technology I've just now figured out are Knitting Podcasts! These are short talk-shows and interviews about Knitting and Fiber-Related Topics. You just go right to the websites and listen on your computer or download them to your Mp3 Player. I'd heard of them, but I thought you had to have the IPod Brand MP3 players to access them. I was surprised to find out that I can listen to them on my off-brand player! They provide something to listen to while knitting or doing housework that don't involve the TV News and teach me something fun about knitting while I'm at it. I haven't fully explored the world of Podcasts yet, but I have found these:

  • Y Knit: This one is primarily focused on men who knit (Y as in the Y Chromosome, I think.) but the hosts (podcasters? I'm not sure of the term) WonderMike and HizKnits are hysterically funny. Their podcast is both informative and full of humor and innuendo. A great combination for times when I need a good laugh.
  • Ready, Set, Knit: This one is done by the owners of the WEBS Yarn Store in Massachussetts. I enjoy the conversational tone of it, including a discussion of new available yarns and products and a Knitalong segment. It's a little more mellow, and good for listening to while working around the house. I found it difficult to knit my own thing while listening to someone give directions for a Knitalong project.
  • KnitPicks Podcast: This one is hosted by Kelly, from Knit Picks. She has some high-profile guests, as well as lots of useful information about available products and project ideas.
I know there are tons more podcasts out there, so many that I honestly may never use my Mp3 player for music anymore. If you have a favorite one (knitting related or not), or if you have your own Podcast, please comment and let me know about it!

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