16 Nov 2009

Episode 87: In the Bro

The past becomes the present; the present becomes the future. We revisit the textiles of Iron Age Britain, make the usual remarks about the weather, and discuss sods law, as it applies to new carpet.

This week’s Audible Picks are Middlesex, by Jeffrey Eugenides and When You Are Englulfed in Flames, by David Sedaris.

Check out the new Craftlit series, Flatland.

Read of the inspirational efforts of the Friends of Colombian Orphans. Please help support their Knitting Initiative and support young women at-risk.

If you happen to be in Oxford, check out Darwin’s Leftovers.

Thanks, once again. To Pay Haynes of Castell Henllys.

The eternal search for the eco scrubby option continues. Might this be the one? (Scroll down; pdf download link at the bottom of that page.)

KniTunes were provided by and used with the permission of:

Additional music: Aufbruch, by Celtic Reboot



  1. Amanda wrote:


    Posted on 11.16.09 ·
  2. Andy Baker wrote:

    Wow. I’m commenter #2! I look forward to the podcast. I’m sure I’ll love it. Thanks for all your work, Brenda.

    Posted on 11.16.09 ·
  3. Mel wrote:

    Friends are the ones who love you in your less proud moments. And then keep reminding you of them to keep you humble. 🙂

    Posted on 11.17.09 ·
  4. Well said, Mell! Hugs…

    Posted on 11.17.09 ·
  5. SarahD wrote:

    In tears after the closing song, and off to buy it for the permanent virtual collection. And maybe I’ll even learn to play it. (Visions of tuning the guitar and cutting the fingernails to play strings again and…)

    Posted on 11.17.09 ·
  6. Ann Marko wrote:

    This may or may not help with the “scrubie” saga.


    Twist is a cool cleaning product company. There are several online companies that are UK based and sell Twist products

    All sponges and scrubies claim to be 100% bio-degradeable.
    Good luck!

    Posted on 11.17.09 ·
  7. Jaala wrote:

    Thanks so much for talking about Knitcircus! We’re all big fans of the podcast and so excited! Just thought people might like to know that we give to Heifer International and KIVA with every issue, since we believe knitters are a force for good.

    Posted on 11.17.09 ·
  8. Jeannette wrote:

    I’m finally caught up and in the present. Feels strange to say that. Thanks for the many hours of enjoyable listening.

    Posted on 11.18.09 ·
  9. Caryn wrote:

    Wow, that was pretty cool! As a former archaeologist, I really enjoyed your interview about Iron age textiles. Keep the good work up!

    Posted on 11.18.09 ·
  10. kathleen wrote:

    Hi, Brenda–

    Whenever you mention your quest for the eco-scrubbies, I flash on Cold Comfort Farm, and Flora’s gift to Adam of a “nice little mop” to replace the twigs he was using to clean (“cletter”) the dishes. A bundle of twigs–now that would be an eco scrubby. 😉

    Enjoyed the revisit to the Iron Age.


    Posted on 11.18.09 ·
  11. Karoline wrote:


    I really loved this podcast and found it really inspiring. Good luck with all of your holiday knitting, I hope you’re not as backed up as I am! Can’t wait to hear the next podcast!

    Karoline 🙂

    Posted on 11.18.09 ·
  12. cimorine wrote:

    Hi, Brenda. I want to thank you for sharing your story about painting, and how you felt when you discovered you were bad at it, because you were new to it. It was really encouraging, because this is the way I feel often in my new choir. I was in a children’s choir ever since 5th grade, and this college choir I joined, upon become a freashman in college, is so much harder! I often feel very inferior to the singers because I cannot read music very well, while many of them play piano quite well, and are music majors, or have had so much experience with music, that it just boggles the mind. So thank you, for expressing your frustration about the painting, because now I know I’m not alone. And also thank you for the song you played at the very end, “the war was in color.” I got goosebumps every time I heard the title phrase in the chorus. It is a wonderful tribute to the millions of people who died/survived the wars. I thought of WWII, and of my Grandfather, who is now dead, but fought and survived the war. Thank you so much.

    Posted on 11.18.09 ·
  13. kat wrote:

    Hei there!

    I had to say, i just started listening to your podcast a couple of weeks ago. and i love it!
    its just great! it gets me through my hours of work, when i can’t knit 😉
    And its great to have those links on your page, in case i didn’t understand everything or didn’t remember the right name, i can find it here!

    best, keep on casting (on)!

    Posted on 11.19.09 ·
  14. Katrina wrote:

    I had this image of you in my mind based on your voice…then I watched the video of you on the plinth and now I’m trying to connect that image with your voice and I still keep seeing the “other” Brenda. Very odd.

    Love the podcast!

    Posted on 11.19.09 ·
  15. Meg White wrote:

    Thanks for another wonderful podcast! During the last break I re-listened to your Entire archive. They were just as enjoyable the second (and third) time around. — Meg

    Posted on 11.19.09 ·
  16. KP wrote:

    I was so in love with the music in this episode that I went out and bought some Girlyman and downloaded “The War Was in Color.” Of course I enjoyed all the other parts, but the music was particularly moving in this piece.

    Posted on 11.20.09 ·
  17. Bergfrid wrote:

    Hi Brenda, and thanks a million times for the pod cast. Your soothing voice calms my mind and aligns the universe – much like how it feels laying on the floor releasing tension after a yoga class. As I listened to this episode, the sun came out for the first time in ages (November is pretty grayish dark and rainy here in Norway) and life seems a little less *insert negative emotion here*.

    Posted on 11.21.09 ·
  18. An excellent episode! I’m off to explore the Castell Henllys website. I really need to visit Wales!
    Thanks so much and try not to worry about your carpet too much. It just has some character and experience now. 🙂

    Posted on 11.22.09 ·
  19. alala wrote:

    Sigh, lovely. Thank you again!

    Posted on 11.24.09 ·
  20. Sumiko wrote:

    Brenda – listening to your podcast is often like therapy for me. So often you talk about your joys and disappointments and so many of them resonate with me. Your comment regarding “I suck at this because I’m new at it” reminds me of how often that I am in that awkward stage when I am learning something… I’m currently in that stage with a task at work. I also notice this in my 8 yr old son when he is learning things at school. Your so eloquent way of describing this feeling reminds me to cut us both some slack. Just thought I’d say thanks for sharing part of yourself.

    Posted on 11.25.09 ·
  21. Sharolene wrote:


    Thank you once again for a funny, humbling and fully entertaining podcast. And I have to say that I loved the music this time. Normally I’m not so much of a fan of music on my knitting podcasts but I have to say that I love your choices of music. I especially loved Genevieve by Girlyman. I don’t think the full album lives up to the potential of this song however. Anyway, thank you so much for all you do.


    Posted on 11.25.09 ·
  22. Laritza wrote:

    Thank you for mentioning Friends of Colombian Orphans. We dream with quality of life for the women of the future.

    Posted on 11.25.09 ·
  23. gill wrote:

    I just discovered your podcast today and thoroughly enjoyed it. In fact you saved my sanity on a long train journey from wales (suitably enough) to scotland when i ran out of knitting. I got to the end of a stripe, but didn’t have room in my bag for the next colour- argh! So thank you 🙂 And will be looking up those tunes when i finally get home!

    Posted on 11.25.09 ·
  24. Ansley wrote:

    Loved hearing the historical interview. Thanks so much for your show. It is still my fave knitting show and it would not be the same without it. Happy Thanksgiving!

    Posted on 11.26.09 ·
  25. Louise wrote:

    Greetings Brenda!

    Hope all is well with you this afternoon. Thinking of you this Thanksgiving Day, and I want to express my gratitude for all you and Tonya do. May your home be filled with blessings, wool, and glad tidings this holiday season!
    Loved the time travel, I actually figured out nahlbinding from this podcast… Woo Hoo! Blanket stitch, who knew? Blessings,
    Worthington, MN

    Posted on 11.26.09 ·
  26. Raquel wrote:

    Hi Brenda
    About that scrubbie, having played with various materials and read quite a bit about knitted dishcloths, depending on your absorption needs maybe a thick linen knit with random buttons “beaded” would be ideal. I heard that good old plastic buttons save your nails for scraping those pesky spots and the durability of linen would still be scratchy enough for some decent cleaning. The beauty of the linen cloth is that it does soften with time but then you can use it as a table/counter rag.

    There is of course the tried and true felted sweater cut up into hand sized pieces then “adorned” with the buttons to add scrubability. I think i might give that a whirl as I have several pieces i’ve fulled on purpose, will get back to you on their effectiveness if your search is still unfulfilled.

    Love listening to your podcast, you always have such interesting content and your format and voice are a delight.

    Posted on 11.30.09 ·
  27. Raquel wrote:

    progress report on the felt scrubbie:
    I used a thicker piece hoping that the absorbancy wouldn’t cause too much smelliness. Alas, I’ve been dealing with that moldy scent and my attempts to stave it off with a minute in the microwave to kill said odor isn’t working! Looks like i’ll try that linen doubleknit scrubbie.

    Posted on 12.10.09 ·
  28. llindy wrote:

    found your podcast today. listened to several. Some were excellent, the later ones were ok. The more knitting you include the more I like them. Music is interesting. I am not interested in scrubbies.
    Would like more knit, yarn, etc. (no crochet stories). Maybe more history on knitting, stories of knitting, fabric knitting , wire knitting, old patterns, knitting traditions in various countries, different knitting needles (lengths, types, material, etc.)
    you named your podcast cast on not gripe on. Be creative and get focused on our favorite subject and the reason we all tune in – knitting.

    Posted on 12.14.09 ·
  29. Llindy, thanks for taking the time to comment.

    I learned very early on in my podcasting life that Cast On can never be all things to all knitters. I stopped trying to please everyone with this podcast a long time ago. The rule now is that I pursue stories that are interesting and exciting to me, and I create the podcast that I would want to listen to. The fact that twenty thousand other knitters also like to listen is a bonus, but even if they didn’t, I wouldn’t change the format, content or style of the podcast. I don’t really “do requests”.

    While you’re not likely to hear much about the subjects that interest you in Cast On, the good news is that there are lots of other knitting podcasts to choose from. In fact, the last time I looked there were well over a hundred podcasts in the knitting genre listed in iTunes. If this one isn’t your cup of tea, the odds are pretty good that you’ll find another one that suits you.

    Best regards,


    Posted on 12.14.09 ·
  30. cindy wrote:


    I’m glad you are holding firm to podcasting your way and not for individual listeners likes and dislikes. I’ve listened to all of the episodes and am always happy to hear what you’re up to. Thanks for staying true to yourself. It’s a good reminder.

    I for one want to hear about alternative scrubbies since my husband in his wonderful and somewhat over zealous cleaning with a sponge/green scrubby combo has ruined the finish on many pretty shiny surfaces in our kitchen. Since I want him to keep cleaning but leave me my shiny things (I swear I’m part crow) I plan to knit several.

    Loved the Carbon Leaf song. Very touching.

    Renewed hopes and wishes for a more peaceful world for all in 2010.


    Posted on 12.28.09 ·
  31. Lisa wrote:

    Hopefully by now you have found a carpet repair person who has helped you. If you have spare bit of the carpet a skilled repair person can make a patch for you that will be difficult to see.

    All the best.

    Posted on 1.13.10 ·

Comments are closed.