Thursday, September 17, 2009

Random Happy Things

I decided this post should be about random happy things today. And why not?

First off, I am excited to report that the comfy purple Gooseberry Cardigan designed by Hannah Fettig that is on the cover of the new Interweave Knits Weekend magazine was knitted up by yours truly! The fabulous Ms. Fettig posted a call for help on her blog back in...April? May? Some time ago anyway. I answered the call and was given the privilege of knitting up her wonderful design for INTERWEAVEMAGAZINEOMG! I was super duper excited to see that they put it on the cover (because I'm a ginormous dork), and I ran out to buy a copy the day it hit newsstands. And if you look in the back at the Staff Projects, you can see that Eunny Jang herself is wearing it! Too fun!

After sending off my most recent shawl, I moved right along to the third in the series of shawls for MacKintosh Yarns. This time I'm doing the Print O' the Wave stole by Eunny Jang in MacKintosh Yarns Spinneret Lace Yarn in the Mossy Bog colorway. I am happy to report that I am in love! This yarn is the best! It's a 55/45 superwash merino/silk blend and it is so smooth and alive that it is so much fun to knit with. The color of this yarn is just perfect for the pattern, and the way the stitches change directions makes the light hit the yarn differently and really gives it a nice shine and makes the color vary from one angle to the next. I liked it so much that I sat down yesterday and in one evening knitted up 9 out of the first 17 pattern repeats. This one will be a quick knit, I'm sure!

And now, a little story that did not make me happy but that might make you chuckle so I'll call it even: When I was a child there was a candy called Tangy Taffy. It was a fruit-flavored taffy sold in a long strip. I loooooooved Tangy Taffy. I think they used to only come in cherry and grape flavors, but after a while they started putting out mixed flavors, like strawberry-banana or mixed berry. They also started coating the top of the slabs of taffy with giant, brightly-colored sugar crystals. These changes were gross and I stopped eating the candy.

Somewhere along the line, Tangy Taffy was discontinued and subsequently resurrected as Laffy Taffy by Nestle's Willy Wonka Candy Company brand. (A quick search on Wikipedia divulged the following, rather unhelpful information: "A former taffy, Tangy-Taffy is also now discontinued and has been replaced totally by Laffy-Taffy," which is essentially what I just told you. You have now been told twice. I hope you're still paying attention. There will be a quiz later.)

While shopping at Target on Monday, I passed the candy display (oh, all right, I was there on purpose looking for Twerpz, which seem to have mysteriously disappeared from candy shelves everywhere, to my eternal broken-heartedness) and found the Laffy Taffy. Remembering how good it was as a child, I grabbed one and brought it home.

Once home, I sat down at my desk to get some work done and started happily gobbling my way through the sticky mess. (No, I don't know why my keyboard keeps getting so dirty. Why do you ask?) I was halfway through the gooey slab of taffy when I found A HAIR. A wiry, black hair embedded in my candy. Ew. Just...ew.

So I immediately called the number on the packaging and was helped by a very slow yet very serious woman on the other end of the line. I had to give her my full contact information. I had to read three different codes to her off the packaging. I had to answer a whole litany of questions about the hair: What color is it? How long is it? Is it curly? Wavy? Sraight? Where in the candy is it? Had I noticed anything odd about the packaging? Had I noticed anything else odd about the candy inside? And so on...

Then she asked me if I would be willing to mail back my "sample" to them if they sent me a postage-paid envelope. Sure. Fine. Then she asked me if I was able to take pictures of the "sample" and email them to a super-special, top-secret link she was going to email to me. This link is only open for three days, and then I guess some sort of internet black hole is going to swallow it up. Okaaaaay...sure.

I was trying not to laugh at this point because really, it felt more like a criminal investigation than a mundane food complaint. I felt like I was working in a crime lab when I took these pictures! Before I got off the phone with her, she reiterated that they take their food production very seriously, and assured me that all employees who come into contact with any step of the food production process are required to wear hair nets, and any men who also have beards must wear a special hair net on their faces as well. Then she told me that they would be sending me replacement samples and some coupons, so all was well.

When I told my brother this story, his reply was: "OMG! You're even unlucky with your candy!!!"

Yes, sad but true. Don't worry: I will keep you all informed as this situation progresses, because I am positive you are all on pins and needles to see how it turns out.

And now I leave you with the final happy thing:

Proof that shimmery happiness can be had for only 97 cents. (Please ignore the red and puffy post-shower feet.)


Julie said...

OH MY HECK!!!!! Congratulations that is SO fantastic! I actually really love that sweater too, do you get it back?

Isn't it fun to paint toes colors that you might not wear on your hands?

Again, congrats!

Yarndude said...

Bwahahahahaha!!!! "Too fun!" hahahahaha.... ::chuckle::

Wow, they really do take their candy seriously. I probably would have just eaten around the hair and then thrown it out.

Wow, you're really cruising with this next shawl. I'm glad you like the yarn.

KGLO said...

WAAAAAAHHH! omigoshomigoshomigosh that is SO COOL. And what a terrifically cute cardi. You skilled knittress, you :)

Team Knit ! said...

congrats on having a knit in IK!! you did an awesome job, everyone scrutinizes those photos like mad. That is so weird about the laffy taffy... if it makes you feel any better (not that it would, but....) I was in a very nice restaurant celebrating my boss's birthday, and there was a hair in my pasta. It was definitely not from my head. I only found it after I was 2/3 done my food. Ew.

- Julie

pacalaga said...

Wonderful! And what a great sweater it is, too!
Woman, turn the hot water DOWN. Your feet look boiled!

soknitpicky said...

Congratulations! That must be so exciting to see your work on the cover (I'm a dork too, apparently!) :-)

Eww about the candy. That was quite a CSI course they put you through just for the hair. I mean, they had better send you like a case of Wonka candies to make up for the time it cost you to answer all those questions and take the pic, not just a few samples. Or at least you should insist they do so :-)

CrookedKnits said...

Congrats on the magazine!! That is truly awesome! I must say I do love some Lauffy Taffy but having worked in the food industry before, employees do their best but nothing is entirely perfect. You did the smart thing calling them and not screaming about it on the phone. I'm sure the lady appreciated it. I used to not eat anything Tootsie Roll because I was told they always had rat hair in it in middle school. Obviously, not true lol.

Free Range Chick said...

I love Laffy Taffy. Bummer on the hair, but you are getting free candy and coupons. Can't really beat that.

Jacey said...

I saw your sweater on ravelry the other day, and I was so excited for you! Do you get to keep the sample, or does Interweave retain it?

I loved Laffy Taffy, but I didn't know about it's history.

And yes, your blue toes are awesome. I thoroughly enjoy painting my toes in a funky color.

leann said...

You should be very happy they took your complaint so seriously. I once ate half of one of those snackpacks of Fritos only to discover that the bottom of the bag contained at least 100 dead, dismembered ANTS. I called Frito-Lay and they could care less. They sent me an envelope, I sent them the package, and they called me at like 7am a couple weeks later (I was in college, so this was unGodly) to tell me that they had found the chew hole but would take absolutely no responsibility for where the ants had gotten into the package (whether at the store or the manufacturing facility.) never mind the fact that this bag came from a multipack box from Costco and none of the other bags had "chew holes" so there's no way they could've gotten there in the store.

So they sent me a coupon for a free bag of Fritos. I wrote them an email saying that I absolutely did not want their free bag of Fritos and, in fact, I would not be buying any of their products ever again. So they sent me THREE coupons for free Fritos.

And, because I wasn't traumatized enough by that whole debacle...when Adam and I were looking for wedding sites, we found the most beautiful little stone chapel in Chattanooga, TN. I really wanted to get married there. But when we went to visit it, guess what was right next store that you couldn't see in the pictures online? A big, noisy Frito-Lay distribution facility.

Enough unpleasantries...

Congrats on the IK cover! That's beyond awesome.

Cookie said...

Congrats on the high profile knitting! And I love your new lace. You're really going to town on it.

I'm glad the Laffy Taffy people are taking that seriously. Better than being told stuff happens/suck it up, right?

Cute toes!

Anonymous said...

Wooo-hooooo! I'd have gone out and bought several of those magazines, leaving them strategically placed around the house to be reminded of my fabulousness. Congrats!

Now I need to know what other foods that Laffy Taffy makes that they are taking so seriously. Apparently those hair/beard-nets aren't too effective for them. The question is - will you buy Laffy Taffy again (assuming they aren't setting you up with a lifetime supply to hush you up...uh, too late)? And was the Laffy Taffy as good as you remembered up until the unpleasant discovery?

Hilary said...

You knit the Gooseberry Cardigan?! That is so cool! Congratulations -- that is arguably the loveliest of all the patterns in that issue. Oh, and I am so sorry about your bad Laffy Taffy luck! (Btw, I definitely remember Tangy Taffy and it was delicious). It sounds like it may turn around, though, if they're going to send you a bunch of free stuff to make up for that nasty hair!

Briley said...

That is so exciting! Congrats on having your work on the IK cover!