Thursday, July 5, 2012

Whitman

My given name isn't exactly unique but neither is it one that I run into all that often. I have a few years more than a handful of decades behind me and I've met fewer than two handfuls of others who share my name. And most of those have been in the past almost-five years since I've begun blogging. This post is about my favourite namesake.

Hilary of Crazy as a Loom is a most creative and talented woman. She weaves deliciously colourful rugs, place mats, chair pads, dish towels and so much more on a growing collection of beautiful antique looms - most of which she rescues and restores in order to give them a new lease on life. Similarly, she frequently rescues feral cats, gets them spayed and finds homes for their litters of kittens when she can. Sometimes that home is her own. She has a huge heart.

Her house is a refuge to several wonderful cats, her sweet canine boy, Roy and all those pet looms. Her octogenarian mom also lives with her and her husband. Hilary takes long walks with Roy, she weaves, creates potholder kits, holds weekend workshops, travels with her daughters, enjoys the heck out of her grandkidlets, cooks up a storm, rescues strays and sells her wares. Take a good look around her website. She has many wonderful items for sale. How she finds time to blog, I'll never know but I'm sure glad she does or we never would have "met."

Recently, Hilary started up a new product line of the most colourful, whimsical sock monkeys I've ever seen. I knew upon sight that these little critters would be in high demand. There was one stumbling block though - Hilary was hard pressed to come up with a merchandising name for her newest creation. She put out a call for help on her blog, asking her loyal readers to suggest a name with which to market her monkeys.

I enjoy wordplay and soon got busy writing up a list of potential names for the sock monkeys. Some were tongue-in-cheek but a few of them had possible merit. It turned out that Hilary liked my ideas and chose two of them - one for the actual name and one for a product description. Each monkey is now being sold as a "Prime Mate® - A Real Chimp off the Old Sock."

All of this leads up to introducing you to my newly-adopted Prime Mate®, Whitman. As a thank you for helping to provide a suitable name, Hilary allowed me the pick of the litter. One cheeky little guy wore an identifying tag with the number eight written on it. He was the one who stole my heart and before long, he was packed up and on his way to Canada.

whitman oh hi
Meet Whitman - so named for the number eight which he still wore on his sleeve upon his arrival. Eight in French is "huit." The almost silent H means that it's pronounced "whit" to our mostly-English ears. I was born and raised in Montreal, so my background still dictated that little bit of French to me when it came to naming my new Prime Mate®.

I'd like to assure Hilary that he has been very entertaining since his arrival north of the border.


meet whitman
On the day he arrived, Whitman got into my Girls' Night Out. It's only about 5% alcohol but in retrospect, it was a bit much for a little sock monkey. He started saying things like "Let's go oot and spend all our loonies and twonies on a two-four of fifty, eh?"* Yeah, it was a little annoying but I humoUred him with an extra U.
* Translation: Lets go out and spend all our money (dollars and two dollar coins) on a pack of twenty four Labatt 50 beer.




monkeys gone wild
Monkeys gone wild!




sleepy monkey
Needless to say, we didn't go oot and aboot. He just kind of passed oot early and so I tucked him in for the night. Boy did that monkey snore!




towels
In case you were wondering (and I'm sure you were), his bed linens are really two lovely dish towels that Hilary wove and kindly sent to me the previous month for winning a caption contest on her blog. She asked me to chose between the white with blue, and the blue with white. Since they were equally attractive to me, I was going to tell her to decide for me but I worried that she would think I was hinting for her to send both. I selected white. She sent both, anyway. She's a generous lady, my namesake.




flower monkey
The next morning, Whitman was mildly hungover and more than a little embarrassed. He offered a heartfelt apology and a pink carnation. Apology accepted.




book monkey


Did you know that he is an avid reader? He doesn't even move his lips when he reads. He says he's determined to work his way through my pile of recent yard sale finds.



All in all, life with Whitman is pretty good. He's a good listener - never talks too much. He's usually happy to share a drink or two, even if he does go a little overboard sometimes. He always has a ready smile and so far, he's never once left the toilet seat up. And on those rare occasions when there's a bit of friction between us, I do exactly what I do with Frank...




monkey in a boat
I send him out fishing.

58 comments:

Kerri said...

I'm in LOVE with Whitman!!

FANTASTIC post!

Brian Miller said...

haha what a cool monkey...love the colors and his name...and a cool accent as well...smiles....too fun...smiles.

Steve Gravano said...

Awesome monkey and great story. It is good not to drink alone!

Bob Bushell said...

Poor Whitman, got a bit to much to drink have you. Never mind, you're beautiful.

Hilary said...

You have brought tears to my eyes on this fine Thursday morning......such lovely things you have said about me. Makes me smile, and smile and smile.
I hope all my monkeys find such sweet and loving homes.
Thank you for being my treasured friend.

Daryl Edelstein said...

Adorable .. this post reminds me of the posts (one was mine) about the little (ceramic) cows Fred & Bessie who visited blogs around the country a few summers ago ..

Leah J. Utas said...

Whitman is quite a character.

messymimi said...

How fun! You've both given me a great start to the day.

Wishing you and Whitman a long and happy friendship.:)

Karen said...

She's one of my favortie people...

DJan said...

Darn! I love Whitman so much I'm now going over to meet the Other Hilary and find a Prime Mate for myself! Hopefully he won't be a teetotaler and will enjoy drinking along with me like Whitman does!

Linda said...

Whitman seems like a bright little monkey. He has picked up the local dialect very quickly. But I can see that you're going to need to keep him away from the sauce. I wonder how Benny will react to him. ;)

CiCi said...

This is so fun to read. How could we not get attached to Whitman, your photos show the cool side of him and how much you are enjoying him. You do have a way with words as well as a camera.

Diane Cayton-Hakey said...

I adore your namesake, Hilary. AND her monkeys are so original and fun. Glad your monkey is enjoying himself on that side of the border.... Did he catch any fish??

ellen abbott said...

very cute.

Nadezda said...

Hi, Whitman! you're very cute!

Denise at Autumn Sky said...

I think Hilary is an incredible woman. And her love of color is perfect for these delightful monkeys. What a fun post about your Whitman:-)

Mental P Mama said...

I love him!! He is a prime mate, indeed! And Hilary is amazing too! Both of you Hilaries(?) are. What is the plural of Hilary?

TexWisGirl said...

whitman is adorable. hilary is a talented woman with a big heart. and i really like your name and slogan!

Frank Baron said...

Very cute. I'm sure Hilary will enjoy the heck out of it. :)

Stephen Hayes said...

I'd say that monkey needs to be spanked, but I think spanking the monkey means something suggestive. Or is that slapping the monkey?

Dianne said...

I was a bit startled by one of Whit's photos until I realized he was just sitting on a bottle!!
yes, I have a terrible mind

he's delightful
I'm off to visit his creator

Suldog said...

I've never been a big fan of sock monkeys, but Whitman is about the cutest one I've ever seen. Great smile!

Rita said...

He is definitely the cutest sock monkey I have ever, ever seen! Great name for the monkeys! Using both suggestions was brilliant! Her dishtowels are beautiful, too. I think I shall have to go visiting and meet this loom woman with the colorful touch. ;)

Gillian Olson said...

Whitman is having a very busy time there, he'll no doubt need some extra rest later.

Karen (formerly kcinnova) said...

Whitman, you are very handsome. It is nice to meet you! (Your litter mates are all good-looking, too!)
Hilary, I've been busy this summer and am much too far behind on blog reading. What a treat it was to click here this morning!

Tabor said...

This is definitely a POTW!!!!! Love that little monkey and your creativity.

Jo said...

Oh I loved this post and I looove your monkey! Hilary can really knit, wow...the colors & patterns are so great.

Very clever trademarking too!

Out on the prairie said...

A fun friend. I found some polka dot ones for a gift, I have always enjoyed them.

Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell said...

You're a wise woman to get some space from Whitman when you need it. Adorable!

Scott said...

Very cute and cleverly creative post.

To answer the question you had on my Teton Peaks post, yes it was posed and there is a mistake in the photo that proves that it was posed. No one has spotted it (or at least said they spotted it) yet. Let me know if you see it.

KarenInTheWoods and Steveio said...

You are a HOOT!!! Came over here from Hilary's blog.
What fun!

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~
Karen and Steve
(Our Blog) RVing: Small House... BIG Backyard
http://kareninthewoods-kareninthewoods.blogspot.com

ZeldaMom said...

Geez you're funny, I'd love to meet you someday.
Whitman sounds like he could be a little stinker at times and the life of the party.

Reb said...

Whitman is a very colourful little fellow. I am glad he has picked up the local lingo so quickly.

Lydia La La said...

So thoroughly enjoyed your post. Laughed away at his drinking problem. I can imagine the work that has gone into creating your little mate. Well done. I love Crazy Loom Hilary's blog.
I'm off now to read more of yours. Have a simply great day.

Gail Dixon (Louisiana Belle) said...

My husband called out from the living room, "What are you laughing at?" I'm still laughing! What a delightful post. Thank you for introducing us to your very creative and generous namesake. I hope her new venture is very successful!

Red said...

Not only a very colorful monkey but also very accomplished in several ares.

Midlife Jobhunter said...

My, how quickly you developed a relationship with this, this Whitman.He seems to fit in quite well with the crowd.

I do like many of the books you've chosen. I do recall Divisidaro to be very good. Curious about the others. You will to read and tell!

ladyfi said...

What an adorable post. Whitman is charming!

holdingmoments said...

I was laughing out loud reading through this Hilary. Excellent.
I love your new Prime Mate® too.
A great friend and companion. :-)

the Bag Lady said...

Whitman is adorable! And seems to be quite a character.

Cloudy said...

Das ist ja eine putzige Geschichte, dazu die tollen Bilder mit dem urigen Typen, einfach klasse gemacht...

Lieben Gruß
CL

Karen said...

Whitman HAS to be the best looking sock monkey I've ever seen!! He's adorable. Of course you hooked up with him. :P

louciao said...

If you're gonna have a monkey on your back, Whitman's the way to go. The knitting, patterns, colours and character are gorgeous. As a knitter, I am in awe.

Gary said...

LOVE!

She Writes Here Now said...

Let the word be spread. Let the news get oot and aboot and out and about, he is adorable :)!!

Anvilcloud said...

It's not a very common name, for sure. I can only think of one Hilary in three decades of teaching, and I'm not sure if I've ever met one otherwise.

NitWit1 said...

Interestingly, I knew a female Capt. Whitman who was associated with the Air Force ROTC at the Univ. of Texas in the late 50s-early 60s.

But your Whitman is my amiable, than she who had a regimented mentality by training!

Anonymous said...

He's so cute I can hardly stand it; your friend Hilary is so talented and I love that he talks like us!
I'm checking out her blog.
Lisa

Kerry said...

Prime Mate!!!!!!! You're a genius. You totally deserve this sock monkey and those cool weavings. I'm ridiculously jealous.

yaya said...

Whitman is a stud! I have a sock monkey that just might interest him...perhaps a love match made on line? What a talented lady his creator is! I can see many photo sessions in many wonderful places in his future!

Hilary said...

Thank you, everyone for such sweet comments. I'm glad you enjoyed meeting Whitman and I'm especially pleased that some of you headed over to visit my wonderful namesake. You folks are truly the best. :)

Country Girl said...

He's adorable. And Hilary is the best!!!

lime said...

whitman is fantastic! i love the name you came up with for the other hilary's line. and the story of whitman's earliest adventures at your house had me totally cracking up!

Zuzana said...

This was such an entertaining post and I love the whole connection between words and numbers and the play on meanings behind words and how they can sound and are perceived. What a great name for the product description as well.;)
Whitman is a cutie.;))
xoxo

Lisa Gordon said...

LOVE Whitman!
The most colorful sock monkey I have ever seen!

Linda said...

What an interesting fellow that Whitman! I particularly love the last sentence. ;)

thecrazysheeplady said...

Oh, LOVE IT!!! We have a stuffed sheep who goes on all sorts of adventures. His name is 20 and he's a huge Serta sheep won by a friend at the National Finals (Border Collies - herding) :-).

Betty Manousos said...

i fell in love with whitman!
he's adorable!

xoxo