Givin’ ’em ulcers.

My screening nurse and medical screening assistant are clearly: a) complete bums, b) worked off their collective hinies, or c) avoiding me like the Plague. I’ve tried calling twice. Not at their desks.

So, I’ve resorted to emails.

I’m very frustrated and angry, I admit it. I’ve been rejected for 4 jobs in the past 2 days, Knitty has rejected my pattern, and the Peace Corps is acting like a dead-beat dad avoiding child support.

Well, fine.

I’m going to go and distract myself. My new(ish) Journey Wheel arrived today and I feel the need to spin. Mum’s robes can bloody well wait.


My parents took my deferment worse than I did, when I called them this morning. Mum was almost in tears and Dad sounded like the dog had died. They were surprised at ‘how well’ I was taking this. Well, it helps that I found this on the Peace Corps medical clearance FAQs:

If you have any of the following conditions, your entry into Peace Corps will be deferred until the condition is resolved:

  • Kidney or Bladder Infections

Great. Now I have to bother my Urologist again. But, I’m going to call them (bloody Federal holiday today). I swear. If only because I was raised in the South. “If you can’t break their hearts, give ’em ulcers.”

Anyway. I spent the day being a little self-indulgent. I dragged my brother and the mutt on a 3 mi hike to The Knittn’ Kitten and got a fat quarter, 3 12″ zippers, and 3 pieces of craft felt – all for $2.65. Gotta love craft thrift stores.

When we got home, I put my new fabric to work and tried my hand (again) at this tutorial. I think I’m close to getting the pattern down. I have 1 bag I can bear to look at (well, if I ignore the handle) without wincing (too much):

And another bag that taught me why I should follow the pattern’s specifications:

Learn from my mistake – use a 12″ zipper, not 9″ zipper I just happened to have lying around. Also, use a zipper and not snap-tape (which was really last night’s lesson, but it bears repeating).

I think I’m going to force Opus to take the bags away from me – she can burn them for all I care – but maybe she (or her Mum) can use them for their knitting WIPs. I just can help but frown at the fact that I put the wrist band on backwards on one and askew on the other. *sigh*

Other than that I have: made dinner, done 2 loads of laundry, dyed the lining of for the mock-up robes, knit 10 rows on the MS3, and knit 2″ on the Slighty Twisted sock. Sooo… all in all, I’m not doing too bad. I just wish I hadn’t eaten those Oreo’s earlier.

Tomorrow I get to line the robes. And call the Peace Corps.

And walk off those Oreo’s.


I just checked my Peace Corps status.

DEFERRED. You have been medically deferred. If you have any questions regarding your medical status, please contact your screening nurse.


listen closely

And you just might hear the ‘thud!’ of my mother falling off of the wagon.

She tried to get a prescription for a narcotic today. Luckily the doctor was either incredibly clever or unbelievably incompetent, because he wrote the prescription out incorrectly. None of us tried to stop her from doing this since we didn’t know about it until it was too late.

The next week or two should be interesting. In a gum-gnashing, nail-biting, snippy sort of way.

I really wish someone would hire me already.

Until then, though, I shall knit like I’m being paid for it. Below are the Mystery Stole and my new traveling sock:

This sock is much better behaved than my last traveling socks and will thus be rewarded somehow. If you have any ideas on how to reward a sock, let me know.

Moving on. The landlord came by today, approved everything we’d done, and then left – all within 5 minutes. He’s definitely my kind of landlord.

The Peace Corps was not so obliging. Upon inquiring as to my medical clearance status, I received this reply from my medical screening aide:

At this time, your medical file will need further review by our staff specialist. After the specialists have completed their review a letter, confirming the status of your medical review will be sent.


I then called my medical screening aide, only to find that he wasn’t in his office and still hasn’t returned my call. Nice. I’m really going to have to start hounding these people more.

Good news? SKA has 350+ members on ravelry and we’re starting a year-long sock challenge in August. I’ve even received a positive reply from the designer I contacted in regards to contracting a Mystery Sock pattern for this fall/ winter.

Bad news? Er, I’m officially terrified of my Bloglines subscription page. I’m so far behind on my feeds that I’m into the triple digits. I have a feeling that I’ve missed some important stuff, too. I’ve also not managed to send out Crimson’s prize or Bulldogknit’s goodies for her son. I also haven’t forgotten the VACANT 1506 challenge, I’m just really really far behind on my plans. Expect it to emerge sometime in 2010 at this rate.

Someone please kick me.

good news, bad news

While I still haven’t heard from the Peace Corps on anything like my placement (sigh) or the level of my medical clearance (‘nother sigh), I DO have other good Peace Corps related news. One, I received a package from the Corps today containing a book (for me) and two booklets (for my family) on what to expect during my service.

Two, well, this is gonna take longer to explain. At the Peace Corps Nominee Potluck, the subject of my spinning wheel came up. I wanted to know if it’d be possible for me to take it with me. The RPCV/ former staffer (returned Peace Corps volunteer/ she worked at the head office in D.C. after her tour) told me that she’d never heard of such a thing, but that some volunteers had taken over things like musical instruments or furniture. Dad then piped up and said, “why don’t we just get you one of those spinning wheels in a box?”

I stared at him (so did everyone else, out of confusion) and finally said, “They’re very expensive, Dad.”

“Well, if you’re going into the Peace Corps for 2 – 3 years, I think we can swing it somehow.” (truth is, I think Dad wants me to get one of these just because they’re so darn cool)

Oh. I filed this welcome nugget away for later investigation. On Saturday night I visited the Journey Wheel website and, after getting very excited over the possibility of taking one to Africa with me, I noticed this:

Journey Wheels: Our Fall 2007 group is now full.
The next open spot is in Winter 2008;
5 available.
Please specify Single or Double Treadle.

cried, “no!” and immediately emailed Sheila. She told me that the note was indeed true, but because of my unique situation we might work something out. After exchanging emails for a couple of days, I received the happiest news there was. Not only was there a Fall spot open due to a recent cancellation, but a spinner in the Summer group had given me her spot in favor of the Fall one. In light of this kindness, I could have a Journey wheel by mid-July.

Fiber artists are truly some of the most generous people in the world.

This news was more than enough to make me ecstatic for the rest of the day. I immediately realised that, while my parents are very generous, there was no way they could afford the total price. So, to make this possible, I’m selling my Lendrum. It’s difficult to come to terms with, but it needs to be done. And, really, my parents shouldn’t have to store Lennie (and all the accoutrement I’ve collected for him) for the next 2- 3 years.

I love my Lendrum (we all know this), but I have to be reasonable. The Journey wheel is the best idea there is (thank you, Dad) and I’ll definitely be able to use it wherever I’m placed. There’s the ‘bad’ news. Well, not really bad. Just slightly sad. But, I’m relieved in the fact that St M says she can meet my asking price, so at least I know that Lennie will be going to a good home.

St M says I should take this all as a positive sign. Mum and Dad agree. There’s something, I guess.

In other news, St M and I spent the afternoon and evening together. At dinner, we noticed the COOLEST chair on the face of the PLANET:

Gandhi spinning on his charkha! How unbelievably spiffy is that?

It must be admitted that I tactically considered what it would have taken to sneak it out. After deciding that not even St M could create that great a distraction, the plan was dropped. But we got dinner anyway. After dinner was Monday Night Knitting. And who did we sit with? Jodie, the organizer of the Charity Blanket Swap. I even got her and C to pose with the blanket WIP:

Which ALSO means that I have fulfilled my obligation to photograph the blanket in my hometown. Coolies. I’m sending it out tomorrow. Watch out, Penny! It’s coming for you next ^_^

And, wow, my inbox is overflowing. Someone help me, please.

I think, therefore I blog?

It certainly ain’t the other way ’round, I’m sure we can all agree.

Stephieface did me the great honor of nominating/ tagging me for a Thinking Blogger Award. She also saved me from having to take a picture of something for tonight’s post, because there’s a button and everything involved:

They seem to be circling around the knitting blogsphere, which is fantastic if only because we’re such a communicative and appreciative group. And it’s also a great chance for us to find new blogs that inspire others. So, to keep this going, I need to nominate 5 blogs that get me thinking. There are so many, too many, but my 5 (which haven’t been mentioned that I know of) are:

  1. Spincerely Yours. I love Tamara’s writing style. I also love the fact that she refers to her girls as her ‘agents’. Lately, she’s gotten me thinking more and more about the Gardasil controversy and it’s possible effects on our children and society. She also knits and spins beautiful things.
  2. Penguin Girl. I love Penny. She keeps me feeling Jewish and actually gets me thinking about every week’s Torah parshah (portion). She’s a prolific reader, adventurous knitter, and always gives reviews of everything she tries – encouraging and tempting us all to try new books, tools, and knitting patterns.
  3. Strings & Yarn. Jodie impresses the hell out of me. I admit it. She knits beautifully, is very accomplished in general, and thought up/ organized the Charity Blanket Swap.
  4. Crimson Mittens. Crimson’s blog was probably the first blog I started reading outside my circle of friends. We’re both members of that very small group, knitting Classicists. While she doesn’t update as much as she used to (;_;), I still find her witty and thought-provoking. She also has a terrible habit of dragging me into swaps.
  5. The Panopticon. I’ve been reading Franklin’s blog for nearly as long as Crimson’s (it’s her fault), and am constantly provoked, worried, inspired, or amused by what he writes. I doubt he’ll notice this, but it had to be included since I look forward to his posts more than I do the Harlot’s.

So, wow. We should do this more often, y’all.

I was interested in the different purposes of all y’all’s stashes. Everyone had a really special reason for stashing, it seemed to me, that wasn’t even remotely related to greed. A comforting thought in this age of conspicuous consumption, eh? It also gives us the moral high ground in arguments over storage space.

Today I got the last of my dental ‘work’ done for the PC medical eval. Whether or not I’ll need dental surgery is still uncertain (cross your fingers for me, please!), but at least I won’t need to get my teeth looked at by a dentist for a loooong while (2 – 4 years from Sept 1, 2007 to be exact).

I tried to call my recruiter after, when the feeling in my face returned, but N was out. I need to catch him before agreeing to any invasive procedures, as it turns out that I DON’T have dental insurance right now (joy). I’m getting really, really sick of the Seattle Peace Corps’ answering service, and nearly have the 1-800 # memorized (extensions, options, and all).


In the end, not much was achieved today (is it already 2 am?) as dinner took over 2 hours to make, I had to rip my cotlin tank out to the neckline again, and tons of errands had to be run about town. Maybe tomorrow I’ll actually get something done.

Not counting on it. But, it’d be nice. Oh, and ha, I checked the number of posts I need to catch up with on Bloglines (never look at the #, I swear I thought I was making progress) – 326 as of right now. People need to stop posting so frequently, really.


“Man is the only animal that laughs and weeps; for he is the only animal that is struck with the difference between what things are and what they ought to be.”
William Hazlitt

I have spent half of today crying, it feels like. Yesterday, I received another packet from the Peace Corps. I tried to call them, but as they’re located on the East Coast, it didn’t get through. After several failed attempts today, I managed to connect with their Medical Eval dentist.

I had, it turns out, received my entire dental eval packet back. Because the dentist I am stuck with see in Eugene decided that I needed to have my wisdom teeth extracted (they’re not even through the gums yet), I was informed that I could not be accepted into the Peace Corps until the teeth were removed.

I got frustrated. My childhood/ teens dentist had insisted to my mother and I that I never, ever attempt to have my wisdom teeth removed until they had “erupted”. There was a high chance that I wouldn’t need them removed. It would be expensive and just a general nuisance. It bears mentioning that my childhood dentist worked at NIH and taught as a Professor of Dentistry in Washington, D.C.

It also doesn’t help the situation that I don’t trust Eugenian dentists as far as I can throw them. Having one drill two teeth for no fricking reason made me paranoid and wary (you never, ever want to hear your dentist say, “oops,” and I have – twice). The fact that one of the teeth the incompetent “Dr” T drilled still hurts to this day pisses me off to no end.

I tried to explain to the PC dentist that I had my reasons for contesting. I finally broke down in tears and explained to him why I didn’t want these people messing with me teeth. He finally agreed that if I got a second opinion that “strongly” supported my claim, he’d let it pass.

By that time, I was crying over the phone (the thought of letting amateurs fuck around with my teeth does that to me), and freaked out by how much this whole thing was going to cost.

There’s no way I’m getting out of having my teeth drilled, I accept that. One of the cavities I accept responsibility for. The other “spot” (no, it’s not a cavity) “could become a cavity”, doesn’t worry me half as much as letting someone drill it.

Been there, done that. The last time it turned out that my enamel had been discoloured by my braces.


Wow, that’s powerful stupid, isn’t it?

I came downstairs still sobbing, and really upset my Dad enough that he didn’t even complain about how much the dental work is going to cost. And cost it will, the Peace Corps doesn’t reimburse for dental work. Dad also came up with several suggestions for ways of circumventing the system that might work. He also suggested that I consider giving up on the Corps and just go to business school instead.

That is NOT an option. I told him so, and he just sighed. Seriously, I’ve come this far, I’m not giving up now. I’m nearly done with the acceptance process.

We ended up getting no work done today, as I kept tearing up at odd moments. Dad and I ran several errands, he took me to lunch and didn’t even complain when I asked to look for invitations for TheBon‘s bridal shower. I found some that I plan on showing to Emmos tomorrow.

I ended up taking a nap when we got home. I was so emotionally exhausted that I could barely stand. Crying never makes me feel better. I remember reading in my teens that women and men were physiologically different when it came to the act of crying. Women, the article claimed, were supposed to receive some sort of emotion “release” due to the release of chemicals in the brain. Men, the article claimed, do not experience this phenomenon.

Whether it’s true or not, this has never happened to me. I always feel just awful after crying.

Anyway, after my nap and dinner, I got two repeats done on Monkey:

I’m one pattern repeat from starting the heels. That’s something, I guess.

I think I’m going to go and sit quietly. Maybe a bubble bath will help.