Saturday, 4 July 2015


I first encountered the word "floss" in combination with the word "river" in 1966, whilst studying English I at The University of Newcastle. "The Mill on the Floss" was written by George Eliot,and was set on her imaginary River Floss, somewhere deep in the dialectic-English countryside.

I next encountered floss as that sliver of nylon that is so difficult to get between my teeth, that when I do manage so to do, I split my gums in a most distressing manner.

And, all along it was just another word for tapestry thread.

Alannah and I have a hoop, some burlap, assorted floss (is this word singular AND plural?), and some lovely pastel buttons. We are going to teach ourselves embroidery. Hopefully, little blood will be drawn. I have invested $2.30 in plastic needles from Shanghai.


Bob Crowe said...

I think in this sense floss is used as a collective noun, like sand or water. There is never a single floss. But the image is so good, glowing yet soft color.

Thanks for your comment and question. I looked carefully at my lead picture in Saturday's post. The angle was looking straight uptown so you might thing the north-south avenues would be visible. My best guess is that the buildings, even the middle-size ones, are tall enough that you can't see the bottom of the street canyons.

Joan Elizabeth said...

When I saw the title my mind sprung to that pink confectionary called fairy floss.

I read Mill on the Floss for English 101 too.

Tapestry/embroidery floss I used a lot in the 60s and 70s. Finished off some 20 year old prices beside my fathers hospital bed and not done much since.

As for dental floss. Impossible to use.

Julie said...

Bob, yes, somehow I inately knew that it was a collective noun in this denotation. I will return to your post for the "streets of NY".

Julie said...

Joan, I forgot all about fairy-floss, not that my experience is very deep. Our experiences, yet again, seem to mirroe each other. I must go back and read that book.

Lynette said...

Great idea, to learn something new. Your photo and your text fit together perfectly.

EG CameraGirl said...

I really like the colours hers! I used to do a lot of embroidery until the photography bug took precedence. :))

William Kendall said...

My mother did embroidery for a long time, though as arthritis got to her hands, she had to do less and less of it.