Jill "xtingu" Knapp

Traveling musician. Singer. Road warrior in bursts. Dork. Easy to spot. Gauche eyeshadow fan. Unreasonably happy.

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Did you know that you have a dominant eye? I knew this, but had never considered what it might mean for my life.

So... put your arms straight out ahead of you, palms facing away from you, fingers pointing towards the ceiling.  Now twist your wrists inward a teeny bit to touch your thumb-tips together and your pointer-fingertips together... this makes a diamond-shaped hole.  Now find something on a wall about 10-20 feet away and look at it through the hole in your hands (make sure both eyes are open).  Now close one eye. Now switch eyes. Make sure your hands didn't move.  When you closed one eye your hand blocked the thing, right? And when you closed the other eye you could see it through the hole, right? Whichever eyeball you could see the distant thing through is your dominant eyeball.

I'm sure there was an easier way for me to describe how to do that, but okay. 


Anyhoo, this morning I went to the eye doctor-- it had probably been nearly 10 years since I've been there. My prescription has never been all that strong, and it's only ever been for distance.  Even though I only ever was supposed to wear my glasses for driving and for watching movies, I'd just keep them on all the time because it was just easier. They're so weak that they never really got in the way or me seeing stuff.

Today's eye exam showed that my distance-prescription has gotten just a teeeeeny bit worse in 10-ish years... and both my eyeballs continue to have the same prescription as each other, which is nifty.  He asked if I'd resorted to cheater/reading glasses yet now that I'm 47, and I told him that just in the last year I find that if I need to read something I have to take my glasses off and read it with my naked eyes... but I don't need cheater/reading glasses yet.  (Matt owns a pair of cheaters and I only use them if I'm doing REALLY close/fine detail painting for an extended period of time. But general reading and dicking with my phone, nope, still all good.) 

So he asked me how I felt about contacts. I told him I only ever really wear contacts for any gigs where I need to glance at sheet music or lyrics (I keep the sheet music/lyrics far away so they don't block the audience's view-- so my everyday distance glasses/contacts work great) otherwise I don't wear contacts... my glasses are fine for everyday life.   I have a gig where I don't need lyrics/music, I prefer the "psychic distance" having a slightly-fuzzy audience provides.  Proof: The last time I ordered contacts was 2009, and I just used my last pair about a month ago. So I really don't wear them often.

(I brought the empty contacts box with me just so he could see my old prescription, and he said "You just used these? You realize these expired in 2016, right?" Oopsie.)

He asked if I was averse to contacts, and I said no. So he suggested we try an experiment. He figured out which eye is my dominant eye, and then did a few tests to see how dominant my dominant eye is... and as luck would have it, my dominant eye is more of a switch. ;-)   This means I'm a great candidate for Eyeball Shennanigans™ -- which means I wear a distance-contact in my non-dominant eye, and I leave my dominant eye nekkid. So if I need to read, my dominant eyeball springs into action, and if I need to see far, my brain switches to my other eye with the distance-lens in it.  Ta-daaaa!

So we popped one contact-lens in at noon today and HOLY SHITBALLS my life has changed. I can see EVERYTHING. It's so cool!  Fuckin' eyeballs, how do they work?

For the record, eyeball dominance has nothing to do with which eye is less-blind or which eye has an astigmatism or anything. It's also not related to your dominant hand. It's just a brain thing.  (My left eye is my dominant eye. Neat!)

#themoreyouknow


(Hi. My name is Jill, and I take 87 years to say what anyone else could convey in 6 sentences.  Go me!)

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5/29 '18 4 Comments
One world, one vision, fried chicken.
Thomas Boutell 5/30 '18
Do you go to Dr. Strauss on Marsh?
Robert Bryan 5/30 '18
Nope! We go to Dr. Tom Piorowski at Springfield Opticians immmmmmmediately over the DE/PA border on 202. I lerve him.
One time, around 1990 or so, I went to a movie with Ursula and we were trying to decide where to sit.

She said "we should sit on the left side of the theater because the majority of people are right eyed" and I almost blacked out laughing.

I didn't realize that eye dominance was a thing then, but I still consider it an absurd factor in deciding where to sit at a movie.
CM Adams 6/8 '18
 

... are the words I use at the laundromat

Our dryer died last week, so for the last 5 days we've been watching Mt. Laundry reach Everest altitudes while our underwear drawers were even running out of Emergency Undies rations.  So on Monday we decided to bring our enormous hamper full of dirty clothes to the laundromat. Dare I say it was fun?

We tossed the stuff into three giant washing machines and then went next door to El Diablo Burritos where I got myself three delicious chicken soft tacos and Matt got himself three steak tacos with this chili-lime sauce on 'em. SO GOOD.  When we were done nomming, it was time to move everything into the dryers. 

We filled the 40 minutes of dryer time with a trip next door (the other way) to the Hallmark store where we bought Mothers Day cards and Yankee Candles (because we're grandmothers, apparently).  We have a little Yankee Candle problem-- we keep one lit in the bedroom and/or the great room pretty often; it acts like a nightlight in the evenings. The problem is that no matter how well we trim the wick and use those little candle caps, the black waxy soot is on EVERY wall and ceiling, really amplifying every drywall nail in the ceiling. It's a great look... though it gives me something to obsess over when I can't sleep at night and am looking at the ceiling.  I can't but think "Jeez. If our walls and ceiling have this much black crud on them from just 2 years of burning candles, imagine the work that dude had to do as he cleaned the hundreds of years' worth of soot off of the Sistine Chapel frescoes." 
  


House stuff

My house needs a lot of love. In no particular order:
1) I need to fix the fence that got wrecked in the nor'asters. At the very least I need to replace the missing slats... at the best I need to replace the whole fence because it looks like crap.  That will not be cheap, but that's OK-- I am willing to pay good money to have a straight, even fence that will last.


2) I need to have a plumber come over and fix a zillion broken things.  A) The basement slop sink keeps filling with black bilgewater... that's not good.  B) The drain underneath the basement slop sink has a huge hole rusted out of it so I kludged together a replacement pipe out of duct tape (yes, really) and it's holding enough, but water + tape don't equal a long-term solution. C) They also need to figure out why my master-bathroom sink is dripping underneath it. (Stuff in the cabinet beneath the sink is wet, but I can't find where it's leaking.)  D) My kitchen faucet looks like shit and the adjustable water-spray can't decide what setting it wants to be on, so it just spritzes in get-all-over-everything mode. E) my hall bathroom toilet needs to have the guts replaced...  you have to hold the handle down to get a complete flush, and that only works 80% of the time... the other times you need a second flush. Annoying. 


3) I need to get the carpets cleaned. We had them scheduled but called them off because of one of the snowstorms.  I'll probably wait until July to get the carpets done at this point, mostly because we are having two Beatles rehearsals per week at the house and we have a zillion people bringing instruments and gear in and out of the house. No sense cleaning the carpets when I have a parade happening 2x/week.  Maybe I'll have them cleaned once the show is in production so we can have a cast party at our place after the closing night, maybe.


4) Landscaping. I would love to hire someone to trim my bushes that got obliterated in the snow last month. While they're at it, I would love to have them plant plants, put some mulch down, and have a yard that isn't a joke.  Then I would love to have someone turn my backyard into something not-embarrassing.  Yes, that means removing the Big Gay Purple Shed. 

5) I need to get the gutters cleaned, and while someone is up on the roof, they need to clean out the drain vents because I am sure they are clogged.  As much as I love my rare Redwood tree, it poops stuff for three out of four seasons and I'm constantly cleaning up after the damn thing. It's maddening.  And the stuff it drops is smaller than the holes on the gutter guards, rendering them completely pointless.  

Easter candy
In other news, I'm not all that into chocolate. But Matt's folks were in Connecticut for Easter and brought us each back a solid dark-chocolate bunny from this local magical chocolatier in Simbury, CT.  I devoured two chocolate rabbits by Munson's Chocolates in just 5 days. They were DELICIOUS. So smooth and tasty!

Yogurt: The struggle
Speaking of tasty things, I've been on a yogurt kick, but it is near-impossible to buy plain ol' full-fat yogurt in the store. There is Greek yogurt out the ass, and every kind of low-fat or fat-free yogurt everywhere. But I just want full-fat yogurt, made with sugar or some sweetener that comes from a damn plant or a bee.   I finally found Siggi's Icelandic Yogurt, but you have to look through the different kinds of Siggi's to find the full-fat stuff. It is deeelicious.  I also found Brown Cow brand yogurt, which is also full-fat yogurt and damn tasty.  But finding these is a feat and a half, and I have to make special trips to find 'em. Annoying. 


What else...

Hot Breakfast stuff...

Hot Breakfast has been taking a bit of a hiatus, but we're finally starting to fill up the ol' gig calendar. We've got a gig in Dover on May 4th, and then we've been asked to play the Wilmington Flower Market on the 10th and then a record-store event on May 11th.  We've got other stuff potentially coming up, too... so it'll be nice to play our own gigs for a change, since we've been doing so many tribute shows lately.


What else...

lipstick
I've been wearing this ridiculously bright hot-pink lipstick lately and I don't care how silly and age-inappropriate I look. It makes me happy. 


Birthdays
Today is my brother's birthday, and I posted a goofy photo of him wearing a leisure suit as a 4-year-old on Instagram.  I called him and we chatted for 20 minutes or so, which was delightful. I love my brother very much.

Tomorrow (Tuesday) is my birthday and we have nothing planned, just like the last zillion birthdays. Matt asked me if I wanted him to get everyone together and I said no thanks.  I don't need people to interrupt their lives and go through the hassle of leaving the house and fighting the social anxiety (or real anxiety) on my account. I don't need the validation. I already feel valid and loved, thanks. :)

If someone thinks of me tomorrow they can send me a text or a card or something. But I don't like obligation. Birthdays are not important to me. 

EDITED TO ADD: How could I forget! My beloved birthday pie turns 17 today, which means we're bringing it for its drivers test and license.  It's a little stressed about the junior prom considering how hard it is to find a date, but we are staying optimistic. I was telling Shelle via text that the closest prospect was a can of evaporated milk from 1995 that lives with my parents, but said can of milk is not interested in kid-stuff like the prom anymore. Shelle replied "Too milquetoast for dances?" And that is why I love Shelle Klein Houser ​​​​​​. 

OK, that's enough for now.

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4/16 '18 13 Comments
It's your birthday, but you give away the presents.
"some sweetener that comes from a damn plant or a bee."
That's a gift.

Happy Birthday. I celebrate you.
We've had good service from http://moonplumbing.com/ since before they had their current website (2001).
-q
Robert Bryan 4/17 '18
Awwww, thanks for the birthday wishes and sweet words!

Thanks also for the Moon recommendation. You've recommended them to me before and they did really wonderful work for us.
Yay you're coming to Dover! On a day I might be here! (or I may not, since I'm kidfree that night, and miss city life). Where are you giggin?

Also, Plumbers putty is an awesome temp-fix for leaking pipe solution. My kitchen sink drain (vintage 1971) is rusted through in a way only fixable by replacing the sink. And sinks are no longer made the same size, so it's not easy to just drop a new one in. So I puttied the drain about 6 months ago, and dream of a day when I can remodel the whole damn dump of a kitchen that I currently have.

I'm with you on the annoying "can't find real yogurt" issue. I've caved and gone over to greek.

In my washerless youth, I used to pay $0.20/lb for a wash&fold service. Cheap at twice the price,IMHO, and worth every penny.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY.
Ursula Sadiq 4/17 '18
Also in my washerless early 30s, I also used a wash-and-fold which was most definitely absolutely the best deal ever-- I am in total agreement!

And thanks for the plumbers putty suggestion. I'd never heard of it, but your suggestion sent me down a youtube rabbit hole, and now I wanna fix EVERYTHING.

We'll be at the Dover Public Library on Friday, May 4th from 6:30 - 8pm. So a nice, chill night for everyone! We are not kids' music, but we don't drop F-bombs or sing about anything particularly inappropriate... but I always like to set that expectation, especially when we're playing in a place one might expect a kids-band to play. Kids do seem to like us... I think it's because we smile a lot. :)
> near-impossible to buy plain ol' full-fat yogurt in the store

The struggle is real. I like whole-milk yogurt, and I like it plain because I want to control how much sugar I put in it. Whole Foods is terrible but I always found that they tend to have a more reliable inventory of unsweetened, whole-milk yogurt than Acme.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY tip: If you can't find Brown Cow, try Nancy's brand.
Michele Grant 4/17 '18
Nancy's brand? Never heard of it, but I am officially on the lookout!

Xo!
Best returns of the day. Wear that lipstick!
Scott Stevens 4/17 '18
Thank you, thank you!

And consider my maw stupidly fuschia. :)
and I love you.
And I love you. :)
Oh! Happy birthday, Jill! A world with you born into it is a world enriched.

You know what's weird? When I'm out and about and I buy nonfat yogurt for Paul, I actually have to be very careful when grabbing a container because SO MANY brands are sold in full-fat form around here. I kid you not.
Anne Mollo 4/17 '18edited
You are so sweet. Thank you for the birthday wordseses!

And dooood, I am coming to Vermont for the Mollo and the yogurt. :)
Yesterday, the store I visited had ONLY full fat yogurts. It was The Weird. And if I'd known that was how to lure you up here I'd've mentioned it a LOT sooner...
Anne Mollo 4/19 '18