of sneezings and linkings

Obviously in order to write something I have to get really sick and crabby, spend three days soldiering on at my (currently worrisome) job, and finally give in to a morningful of bad dreams and a sinusful of junk--and stay home a bit. Here I am in Nachshon's apartment, considerably warmer than my house, downing tea and being tearfully irritable and making plans and sending emails.

I miss you, neglected blog.

Am working on an email and post about holiday giving. I decided that this year I am finally going down to extremely minimal gifts (books, homemade treats) and donating a big chunk of money to charity. Most of my thoughts on the subject will be in the email/post, but as I'm currently getting job-qualms I'm reminding myself that my commitment is to send off some generous checks even if it means that I need to take another part-time gig. It will be worth it.

The current job is at R.E.Load Bags, a small company making custom courier bags. We make backpacks and stuff too, but the real highlight is the fancy applique and embroidery we do--seriously gorgeous custom work. "Applique" and "embroidery" sound like dainty fireside amusements, but we do hardcore elaborate machine work, which involves manipulating the fabric, the stitch width, and the presser foot, all on a big heavy industrial machine. This is on heavy-duty Cordura fabric. I'm impressed on a daily basis. Check out the galleries of bags for sale and previous designs.

The problem is not anything about the work itself but just that we don't have enough of it. Too many cutter-hours scheduled. It takes a lot more time to sew a bag than to cut it out, even with all the doohickeys that our bags come with, so with two cutters and five stitchers we get hopelessly ahead. We finish the day's orders in the morning and then cast about sadly for things to measure and slice. I'm afraid that the bossman (a decent guy) is going to trim back our hours, and as the full-time person, mine might be the first to hit the cutting room floor. (Sorry.)

This job was supposed to be my solid seitan-and-potatoes until I find something Real. It is fine at four days a week but at three money gets tighter than ...something tight.

Ah well. Back to trawling for Real Job and writing up my little charity pledge'n'plea. Some places to look for fun web-based givin':

Click on a candle with a match, your cursor, to light it. Bristol Myers Squibb will donate a dollar to the National AIDS fund.

Pick a postcard and a message (or write your own) and Xerox will print and send it to a serviceperson in Iraq. The art is great stuff drawn by kids, full of flags and eagles and bombers and hearts and "thanks"es.

The old standby, sponsoring the Breast Cancer, Literacy, Child Health, Animal Rescue, Rainforest, Hunger, and other click-free-to-donate sites. Pros: you can do it every day. Cons: having to look at tons of ads.