Wednesday, September 06, 2006

remember these?

Well, you MIGHT if you knew what it was. It's a RICE BAG. If you were on a quilting list in the early 1980's - when the listservs were all text and no graphics, and the screens were black or blue with white text, and there were lists like Genie and Delphi and eventually, Quiltnet - you will remember rice bags. This one is on my right shoulder at the moment, giving it moist heat to relieve the ache.My shoulder has been killing me for days: feels like bursitis. Here's the deal, for those of you who don't remember when everybody on the planet was making these things. You dump a bunch of cheap white rice into a little pillowcase thingie you've made on your sewing machine. Then, when your back or shoulder or neck or wrist or elbow or whatever, aches, you stick it in the microwave for 3 minutes and s too hot, wrap it in a towel and put it where it hurts. Ahhhhhh. You can use it again and again - but when it starts to smell like popcorn, dump out the rice and refill it. This one is about 6"x9" and is filled with a big box of Carolina rice. There used to be these discussions about whether rice worked better, or split peas, or some other grain or bean. I couldn't be bothered doing the research: rice always worked for me. I used to keep a few around at all times but the one I used in desperation last night was gross, and I didn't have a grain of rice in the house. So we stopped at Whole Foods on the way home from dinner tonight. I had to paw through rows of basmati, brown, wild, jasmine, and 17 other varieties of exotic mixtures till I found my $1.99 Carolina cheapo rice. i think I overpaid, but I was desperate. I sewed up and filled this (above) ugly piece of fabric I printed when I was in Florida on my mother's dark porch: looks like a gelatin print that might have potential if it didn't have blobs of black paint on it. See, there is a use for everything! Today, between phone calls that I was not going to answer but did, I was out on the deck again printing more fabric samples with dyes and discharge paste. I haven't ironed them yet to see how they have turned out, but maybe later. I threw out an iron yesterday because it leaked and then the handle got too hot. One of my kids used it in college (or didn't use it,which is more likely) - and I think that kid has been out of college more years than I care to contemplate. So, on my list for tomorrow - buy a couple of cheapo irons to discharge and do batik with.

One of the phone calls today was from my friend Barbara in Atlanta. I'm going to stay with her when I am there teaching Soy Wax Batik at Fiber on a Whim, Oct 11-12. Apparently, there has been a lot of buzz about the workshop there, so if you live within driving distance of Atlanta and want to sign up for the workshop, I think there are still a couple of spots left.

I am going to rinse out my fabric and make a cup of tea and will be back with an update if there is anything worth posting a picture of - LOL.


Karoda said...

i hope that shoulder feels better very soon.

and yes i remember those list servs well but don't recall rice bags.

Debra said...

I love rice bags!! Gave them to all the Pickles one year for xmas. And they are still in use. I probably 3 in different shapes and sizes that I use all winter.

Hope your shoulder feels better soon; a painful shoulder is a royal pain.

Terry said...

I've been searching high and low for my rice bags. My neck hurts so bad I can hardly turn it. The rice bags have disappeared. (Maybe bugs came in and carried them away!)Guess I will have to make some more.

I hope your shoulder feels better soon. Getting creaky and ache-y is hell.

Anonymous said...

Dear Rayna,
Love your blog...I am usually a hit and run reader but I feel your pain. Try SOMBRA cream all natural pain relieving gel-I am never without two jars(have to have the back-up jar for mental security) anyway I had 'frozen shoulder' two yrs ago and this was the ONLY thing that made my pain go away. I am fine now but the smallest hint of shoulder pain after painting all day and I lotion up. You can get it at
Good luck,keep up the good work. Kindest regards,Missy

Rian said...

Hope your shoulder feels better soon.

I don't remember rice bags, but I remember those black screens with white text.

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