Monday, July 13, 2009

The Life of a Picker

A Picker, in this case is a box. It has sharp teeth, like sharpened 4 inch carpenter nails inside. The nails are spaced so that they will slide between the rows of nails above them. The purpose of this tool is to help us spinners, loosen up our spinning fibers after they have been washed. You can use the picker, as you will see, with many different types of fiber.

This particular picker is new. It was just bought by my friend Mary. She has been soooo very kind to share her new tool with our spinning group. We thought it would be great to write the adventures of THE PICKER.
First, thanks Liz for the photos. We will take more.

The first story we have is from Marlene.

On a Wednesday in June, Liz took me to achurch where a bunch of women were sitting around with their feet on this little wooden thing and they called it spinning. I was quite intrigued. I undertand that a person named Laurie was to pick me up but she wasn't there so Marlene took me home. I sat in her dining room for a while. I heard her say that her sister, who never visits her, was coming on Friday and staying until Sunday. I think on that Thursday Marlene washed some llama that she had been given. She said she had thrown about half of it away because it had little white thingies in it. After her sister left, I got to work. Back and forth, back and forth I went, almost like skating. When she was about halfway through, she started noticing, in the fluff that I gave her, a whole bunch of little white thingies that had been hiding. I am not sure but I think she called them nits. By this time, she was disgusted and threw them all in a sack, the fluffy stuff I gave her and then the not fluffy stuff I hadn't touched. I heard her say that she would give it all to Cindy for doggie beds. Boy, was I dirty, in spite of all the washing and rinsing.of that fiber that I fluffed for her. Marlene got the shop vac out and blew as much stuff off as she could and then, risking injury, she cleaned my tines. I must say, I cleaned up pretty good. The next Wednesday, I went for another car ride. I went back to that place that the ladies gather at with their feet on the little wooden things that make wheels go around and around.I got to ride in Joannes car but I went to Lauries house. I think I am in for a workout there. Thanks for listening, The Picker

The second was from me:
"Whew! I am so glad to be in your car. Maybe you won't work me as hard as that other lady. She had this llama stuff and worked sooooo hard. Then she had to throw it all away. I really felt bad though, like maybe it was my fault. I sat there wanting to say something to make her feel better. I noticed she was limping a little and thought, if I could just make it better somehow. THEN, she started cleaning me and it felt sooo good to get that crud off. So, I decided to cooperate with her and didn't hurt her as she cleaned. Now that I am back at that church building, I didn't even get to go insided! What kind of treatment was that, anyway???? Geeeeesh. Marlene's husband and you just carried me, gently and I thank you for that, from her car to yours, where I sat and waited. REALLY! I would have been quiet, if you had let me come inside. Finally, you were done. You and Maxine brought out your spinny thingys and fiber, OH, I thought I was going to work. But, no......... crumb. Off we went. Has anyone ever told you that riding in the back of your Blazer is bumpy?? You really ought to rethink where I ride next time. Phew. We stopped. Then all of a sudden I was being moved again and into another car. Don't these ladies know anything other than driving cars. OK, I get it, my vacation is over and I am going back to work. I am going to Laurie's. Bye, Joanne "

And the third is Lauries:
....I think I'm in for a workout there..... AND it's a dang good thing I got to recline on the antique-velveteen-camelback-couch for a week before the workout began, because I needed a rest. Within a day or two, I began to notice soft stuff on my head, and pretty soon I couldn't see out at all. Then, the house got really, really hot, and I began to wonder if my tines would go limp in the scorching heat, and if I would ever be able to pick the same....Eventually I got disoriented in the hot, dark front room, but I had the feeling I was in the northern part of the metroplex, and thankfully, I could hear lots of voices and a dog (whose bark rivalled my dear owner's). I knew I had not been abandoned to a totally uncivilized nation, because just as my gorgeous, sleek, wooden body began to overheat, I noticed a cool breeze. Aaaaaaaah. I do declare, that feels like AC. Two glorious days later, I was gently uncovered, and carefully hoisted from my place of rest to a very ugly 1970 kitchen table on the driveway. Morning shade and fresh air did me well. I was quite clever to conceal the details of my operation, and had the most fun watching the blonde attempt to figure me out. Yep, she was a blonde. I know she didn't notice my convulsed laughter, because her head was buried in those papers I tote around. " Hmmmmm ", she said, "what the...?" All my fun was over when she dialed our dear friend, Liz. Liz knows everything. I met her already. She's a nice lady, and she likes skinny dogs. They're real good dogs, but they don't have much to pick. One big honkin' screwdriver later, my 4 honkin' screws were loose, my flaps were down, I was fit, and ready to rip! And PICK. I'm thinking, "Just you watch this, Lady."Then, I took a look. Just how many bags of fiber does that blonde chick think I can handle? I know "fo sho" that I can handle more than she can. I took a few cleansing breaths, and off we went with some simple soft stuff. Alpaca. Lots of tiny pieces of grass. I did my best to pick it right and the lady says " Dern it. The grass isn't gonna pick out." Heck no, I'm not no grass picker, I'm a fine-tuned, sharp tined, hard wood, FLEECE picker. Sometimes the grass falls out, and gets in my teeth, but I'm not willin' to pick all the grass out maself. NOPE. That costs extra. Pickin' that alpaca she called Gizmo, was a breeze. Then, came the tougher stuff. Clean wool, and dyed the most gorgeous color, but kinda stuck. "HEY LADY, LOOSEN THAT UP A LITTLE !! WOULD YA?" She did. I can't believe how strong that lady is. And relentless. Sometimes I had to chew up the same bite twice before she would let me spit it out. " Girl, I'm not a ruminant!!" I told her. Many bags later, I felt like I'd run a great marathon. I've never been more fit. I hope she enjoys that red spot I gave her hand from all the back and forth. ( just like those wonderful blisters people get from ice skates) I tried to tell her to put on a glove, but she didn't listen..."I don't know where my gloves are." I think she just didn't want to stop the rhythm and go look. But I did notice she looked at her hand a few times. Good thing, too, because that's when I had time to take another deep breath. Honestly, we made a really good team, and I got the feeling that she might kidnap me if she could. I mean pickernap me. I wasn't worried because she treated me with such tender care. I wouln't even mind if I never left this place. You know, when she put her face dangerously close to my needle sharp tines to blow the grass away, I tried to kiss her. She was too quick. That's ok. She doesn't have enough hair for me... Well, I'm all clean and happy now, resting on yet another antique velveteen couch in the garage. Now, I'm really close to lots of bags of fiber, and I feel right at home. Don't know for sure if Laurie has more work for me to do, but she'd better get on with it, because I was born a ramblin' Picker, and I'm just living to do come cotton pickin' if I can. Signin' off for now -- Mary's Best Fancy Fiber-cotton-pickin-wool-flickin-alpaca-lickin-bunny-slickin-face-kissin-finger-jabbin-fiber-spittin-BENCH PICKER
Hope you are having a good laugh now. Signing out and stay tuned for the next visit the picker makes.

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