Sunday, July 31, 2005

Lessons I learned.

1. Even if I feel better, it is NOT wise to lug a 50 pound box from the upstairs corner of the house into the basement. Three days later and I'm STILL feeling it. Sharply.

2. When driving to a wedding that is two hours away, lace knitting makes it go faster. Also, when contentious little sisters on hypersensitive "just wait till you say that about MY kids when they're that age!" mode (no, love, your children have a mommy who stays home and cares for them, our cousins aged 7 & 9 and carry on like Lord of the Flies, do not), it is good to pretend that you're in a Very Difficult Part of the Knitting and cannot be bothered.

3. When parents are over and you are PMSing, do not play with the fine, sharp dpns your socks are sitting on. It's just creepy.

4. When you see a book that's gone out of print show up at for a few bucks lower than the title price (and all the other offers come up between $30 - $70), SNATCH IT LIKE THE CRAZY MAD WOMAN YOU ARE!!! Just like I did. (Note: It was the Tap-Dancing Lizard that I saw at the Topeka Library weeks and weeks ago...I'm not a fan of intarsia and fair-isle, normally had dragons. *weak-kneed*)

I would like to warn you all that I am cooking up a Joy Of Being A Woman: Single Version post. If you're a strong feminist, you may just want to click on one of the delicious links on the right hand column and pretend that you still love me when that post pops up.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005


Well, it's been a couple of days so I thought I would poke in and say hello.

Things have gone less than ideal since I last caught you up. I have been weakened to the point where every joint feels like they had just been cast from the jello mold of creation. Ironic since jello is made of, well, you know. And, heaven help me, they hurt. They protest like the children I live with. I still shuffle like an old arthritic 70-year old every morning as I adjust to standing after 5-7 hours of lying prone. My hands were swollen on Sunday, but now the swelling has gone down, though there is now a rash on my fingertips. If you look close, you can see these little 'pits' the size of pin-pricks all over every last finger. It's a similar (but milder) reaction that I get in the face of latex. And as my body tears itself apart, my mind decides it needs to work the reverse.

It started innocently enough. I finally dragged my Wacom Tablet out, found a Painter tutorial, and colored an old sketch. It's a far cry from fantastic, but I've ignored this aspect of my talents for quite a while and now I want to improve. I doodled while at work. I created livejournals for my story characters and a community for them to harrass each other in.

And last night...I spent a blissful twenty minutes listening to Sarah McLachlan's Solace album as I knit on the Mystery Stole.

My hands will heal, I've had this rash before, though usually much more local to one finger and usually just under the fingernail, never on the fingertips before. My joints stop feeling like tortuous jello after an hour's use anyways, and this stint of physical deconstruction will leave me inspired and just that much stronger.

I wish I were more eloquent about the effects of adversity on my mind. I'm not a writer, I'm a fighter. I could cry in woe at all the trials I face, but I relish them. I grow while I am weak, I glow in my trials, and I always know that in the end, I am stronger, happier, wiser, and better for it all.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Knot about Knitting but Knursing.

I have recently begun to visit the nephrologist's office in happy SLC because I was incredibly sick and tired of the Foreign Doctor. Foreign Doctor who would have me come into the office once every month so that I could sit in the waiting room for 15 minutes, then sit in another room, the sort with charts and that odd bench that wishes it was an automatic bed, y'know what I'm talking about. There, a medical assistant takes my vitals and then the doctor comes in, sits and reads my chart for five minutes, tells me that everything looks fine (as far as I could tell that's what she said with her very heavy accent) and to come back in a month. I finally asked her in January why she wanted me to come in every month. She gave me a look and said "Okay, come back in July." ...right, I don't know what her deal was but I couldn't understand her hispanic anyways, so rather than risk my health because SHE has an issue, I decided to switch over to SLC.

Besides, I was about ready to slap the secretaries at the front desk with their God-complexes. When I told them I wanted to change doctors, they gave me this snotty little act as if I had insulted them. And when I told them that I had a problem with Foreign Doctor, the answer was "Well! We've never had any complaints before!" Maybe because normally the patients assigned to her are hispanic, too. I don't know, don't give me this crap, just give me my chart!

Anyways, new place, new start. While I'm there, I'm talked into participating in a drug study where they essentially have taken a pill that I'm already taking and made it enteric coated (so it's not broken down in the stomach but later on in the digestive tract, defeating nasty side effects). And within moments, I am meeting Ms. RN of the study.

Ms. RN is a young lass, maybe my age. A wisp of a girl like most other women in ye olde Utah (what is WITH that? Does no one female between the ages of 10 and 35 eat?) with a charming smile as she introduces herself to me, and the inner nurse within me is up and ready to see how this chick does with being an example.

Nice bedside manner? Check. Knows her crap? She read the pamphlet so check. Can actually do nursing worth a damn? Errmm...

Ms. RN is in need of my blood to be sure I qualify for the drug study. No problem. She starts with the tourniquet and...strangest thing, she uses a clip to keep it tight when any other phlebotomist just knots the thing. It's clumsy and awkward, I'd never use it myself, but if that's what she's used to, fantastic. She dons her gloves and then with a pair of scissors, cuts the tip of her right index finger to her glove OFF. The glove is now rendered useless, she is exposed to all blood products and I am horrified.

Oh, I'm not concerned about me. In fact, I nearly laugh my ass off when she rubs an alcohol pad on her finger. Oh honey, I'm really relieved for that, promise, but that glove isn't for my sake, it's for yours!

So she has the needle, pokes the Veteran Vein (the one you can see from a mile away and is about as thick-skinned as any ex-military man) and with some struggle, gets blood...both in the tube and all over the needle and she gets her finger in it. If I had any sense or nerve (people with sharp needles make me lose said nerve), I would have told her that what she just did was unacceptable. In fact, I would have spoken up as soon as I saw her cut off the finger of that glove.

But any respect I had for her was lost forever. It's the first law of nursing, to keep that protective boundary up, to protect yourself because you do not want a missing finger on your glove when you're dealing with vomit or piss or something vile like that. Blood's the same. The only reason she took the finger off was to feel my vein. But when you can SEE the damn thing, big, blue, and about as wide as your PINKY, you don't have to be all delicate about feeling where it is. The glove won't cut down on being able to feel it, it's like a freakin' inner tube! I wear gloves when doing blood sugar, even if the person pokes the finger themselves and gives their own shot. I don't know who's got some sort of blood borne disease, gotta be careful and assume everyone has hepatitis and AIDS just in case.

She also forgot the compensation check I'm supposed to get for this study. Bah. Me no likie!

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Kit Knitter and the Half Finished Objects.

Oh ho ho, such a clever subject title, I win! Just kidding. I lose because I haven't been knitting much at all. Or doing much else, just kind of working to come home too exhausted to do much. I really ought to just start scheduling for afternoon shift, then I'm not so tired. I'm such a night owl, after all.

My SP is a huggable, squishable darling. I love her (I'm assuming she's a she here) and her presents. The knit bag is so excellent. I can't tell you much the sheep amused me as well. I tried not to break it as I pulled out the measure and then watched it zip back in. How unpleasant for the sheep, however. To have your tail pulled and then your middle squashed. Teehee...I'm so silly. I even started a sock with the Regia that she gave me from her stash *love*. This on top of the other UFOs waiting for me. Thank you so much!

Speaking of UFOs...this is really pathetic. Since I came back from Kansas, I've done very little knitting, as I mentioned. I have no pictures because I haven't really advanced much from the pictures of UFOs from last time. *shame*

However, I have good news. I'm going to start on an experimental immunosuppressant. Seeing as how it's just the enteric coated version of one I'm already taking and the FDA has already approved this drug, I'm not too worried that it'll make me grow a tentacle tail or a third head or something like that. But I get 3 months of free experimental drug plus...compensation. Since I'll be doing this at U of U in SLC (where I had my first kidney transplant, huzzah!), I think I'm going to explore after visits, finding some lovely yarn stores. I want to visit the Unsheared Sheep store in Sandy again, that was a fun store. But I do hope the drug works. If that's the case, I don't have to buy Imodium every month or two. Man, yesterday was a bad day...I took 3 of the lousy imodiums and then laid in bed all day. I'm glad I didn't have to work despite being scheduled already. *sigh*

Anyways, I'm still waiting for Knitpicks to come through so that I can send off my package to MY SP already. *laugh* And I'm trying to be all packed up since I'm moving into my cousin's room so that he and the other cousin from the basement can share THIS room while my eldest cousin and his soon-to-be wife can have the basement to themselves.

Once they move out though, the basement SHALL BE MINE, MUWAAHAAHAA! or at least until I get my own apartment, which I'm desperate for. Must study to get a good job as an RN first. *determined*

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

The Gift of Hard Work

This is dedicated to the ones who don't understand the work that goes into a knitted project.

Now, you can pretty much go anywhere and get a cute thing that's been machine knitted by some cold machine that works tirelessly for hours on end. The machine never gets sore wrists, the machine never drops a stitch, and the machine never has to be paid. Thus, you can go to Target and get a cute pair of socks for under $10. Or a nice knitted poncho at Walmart for under $5. can go with handknit. Handknitted objects are works of love, care, devotion--who am I kidding? They're works of frustration a lot of times. There's swearing involved, dropped needles, wrists that refuse to work somedays, and boy does it take some time.

It took Kit two weeks to make one sock. She doesn't steadily knit, but if she did, it would've taken about 8 hours if she was a freakin' cold-blooded machine without friends, family, or a job.

So, consider 8 hours for one sock. At minimum wage, depending on the state, that is between $40 and $50 dollars. Then factor in the price of yarn. Kit just bought a skein for her birthday of Mountain Colors Bearfoot yarn for $20. Or Knit Picks has yarn for under $5 per skein. 1 skein makes one sock, so $10. And then the needles. If she gets the cheap sort, the Boye needles, it's about $2-$3. If she fancies needles that don't squeak and that glide lovingly through yarn, the price can go up to as much as $20.

So, grand total: time x min. wage = $40-$50 x 2 = $80 - $100. Plus yarn = $10-$20 = $90 - $120. Plus those needles = $3-$20 = $93 - $140.

There you go, a price range of what a pair of socks can cost if you want to pay fair for it. Want it for free? That's what Kit gets hit with.

Imagine if you wanted a sweater.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Where Kit makes a fool of herself.

It was a day. I could not sit and concentrate on my studies at all. So after a while, I abandoned it for tidying my room and getting the Kitting Bag ready for the stitch'n'bitch. There was some work on the Mystery Stole and I realized the magic of not knitting so tightlyyyyiiieeee! Genius, Kit! Your medal is in the mail along with your reimbursement check for your Nursing Concepts 5 exam. Right.

Well, around 5:30ish, I printed the directions, refueled Tohru and headed to SLC. Then this exchange took place.
Tohru: "Hey Kit, guess what you forgot to do today."
Kit: "Eh?"
Tohru: "Feeling a bit...warm?"
Kit: "Aw shit. The refrigerant."
Tohru: "Bwaahaa, you are so screwed."
Kit: "Just you wait, I'll do it tomorrow."
Tohru: "But it's 104 outside now." *more evil cackling*
Kit: "Grr..." *weeping, wailing, gnashing of teeth*

So no air-conditioning in the Tohru. But oh well, there are alternate options, like...oh, windows.

I had good directions this time, though I passed the place once...oops. But I found it second time around and that's when it struck, the shyness.

I was going in, that much was true. But was I lame enough to bring in the Kitting Bag? Oh no, I wore such a lame shirt. And my hair, such a mess! Oh noes, oh noes...and then the Spine Chip I had installed not too long ago kicked in. "Girl, what are you thinking? You bring that bag to Vermillion Skies and defy anyone to call you lame, then! You grab that bag, you finish that sock, and you have fun! That's an order!" Well, who can really ignore such orders? Not me.

I walk in and I think I catch someone talking about 'Kit'. I have an admission to real name is Kirstin. Kit's an online monniker and though it's perfectly acceptable to call me that offline, I'm still trying to get used to it. Anyway, I meekly walk up and make my introduction and I'm afraid I never really caught everyone's name. But everyone was very warm and inviting. I sat in a tall chair for a bit, but felt a bit aloof up there, so I sat next to, er, Susan (I'm so sorry for not catching anyone's names! Well, except for Margene). It was so much fun, especially when the lass who was working on the scarf got into an intense Harry Potter discussion with Susan. *laugh* Oh that was so much fun. I *must* check out MuggleNet now. It seems that Harry Potter is more of a murder mystery than a fun fantasy story.

Oh, and I'm so coming back, though not next week, since I need to be in bed by 10pm to be up by 4am for work.

But I am a bit embarassed...the topic meandered to homosexuality. Disclaimer: The Kit does not care about sexual orientation, it does not change who the person is, really. Anyways, lovely-scarf girl was agrieved to the reference of a place by the virtue of its orientation to the house a pair of "gay guys" lived. And I wondered, well, if that's how one understood where the place is, well, isn't it the same as saying "the house behind the blue house" or "behind the house with the large swimming pool and rabid hamsters." After all, I'm sure the men knew that they were an anomaly in that neighborhood, just as I know I was in Kansas, the 27 year old virgin. Just as I am here. *laugh* Anyways, I talked about the gay couple in my neighborhood who amused me by mowing the lawn without shirts on (mmm, eye-candy). They were nice guys with a wonderful sense of decor. I liked them well enough. But I'm sure that by saying that they were a couple of 'gay guys', I was not being politically correct. And when I want to impress people, I don't want to leave on a bad note...oh dear.

I have a confession to make. I do object to men being gay. Gay men can't be seduced by The Kit. That's my only objection.

Anyways, now I'm ready to sleep and figure out what this goose-egg bump behind my ear is.

P.S. If you guys could introduce yourself so I know who is who, please? Thank you!

Monday, July 11, 2005


Since I don't have any sort of classes or work tomorrow, I have decided to go to the SLC Stitch'n'Bitch. As long as I don't come down with a nasty case of the shy-s. I hate when it happens, I thought I was over it. But for some reason, I ain't. Anyways, I'm having trouble deciding what to bring.

A mess on my papasan!In the left corner, we have the Mystery Stole! Despite the fact that all the steps have already been released and she has had plenty of bloody time to work on the monster, it is only into 1 repeat with lots of mistakes and two dropped stitches to incorporate so far! Will she want to bring this, embarassed as she is with bringing something so inexpert to an SNB filled with so many accomplished knitters?

I adore the whole red/fireyness of itAnd in this corner is a sock. One of the wilder creatures she's attempted with a cuff she adores and yet worries that her mother will never really truly appreciate the sock for what it is. This sock also has special emotional value, for it has helped her keep conscious during church, amused the play bandits on the Heber Creeper, and has yet to receive its debut at the Vermillion Skies decafe so has kept itself a mystery. It is also...almost finished. Will Kit decide to impress all by finishing her sock? Will she collapse under pressure by trying to do the kitchener stitch for the second time in her ever-lovin' life and this time in front of an audience of, again, accomplished knitters?

Decisions, decisions.

This is so how I feel right now.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

No joke!

Well, Kansas was a culture shock after my guard had been eased down by the gentle Utah people and atmosphere. Breathing humidity wasn't easy. Seeing all the people going around with severely fewer body parts covered than usual was a bit of a shocker for this woman. Seeing a homeless guy without pants peeing into a corner was an interesting experience. And this is during the day, I wonder if the guy didn't care or was a bit scattered in the cerebrum.

Anyways, I promised photos, so photos I got.

Tch, Prima Donna PuppyIt was a long ride from Utah to Kansas. We left around 7 or 8 in the morning and got there around 1am. The family dog, Daisy, took it all in stride and slept through most of it. And at every stop, she was ready to go out, stretch her legs, and look gorgeous. She's seriously a wonderful dog. Great manners, very friendly, just a wonderful thing. I worked on the Mystery Stole a little bit, but in a cramped car with a stinky dog, I wasn't all that crazy about knitting.

My birthday came after the hungover-from-long-car-ride day. I awoke with an envelope in front of my nose, though my short-sighted eyes had a hard time figuring out what that was.

"HAPPY BIRTHDAY!" my mother crows and I'm thinking that the only thing happy is that I'm too tired to be snarky on my birthday. To my delight, the envelope contained $100 from my oma. Yes, yarn money!

But then I finally come to and pull out my list of yarn stores to visit. I could go to Kansas City but it's very labyrinthine and I don't want to be lost in one of the nastier parts of KC like I did last time I tried to find one of the yarn stores down there. So it's out. Closest one after the Yarn Barn is Knit Wits. Okay, I've been to Olathe (actually after I finished LPN school, there WASN'T a part of the Greater Kansas City area that I had *NOT* visited or gotten lost in). I could find my way around.

But still, the cities aren't nice and conveniently grid-like as they are in Utah so I pull up directions from Mapquest. This was a stupid mistake because Mapquest is crap. But I don't find that out until later. Wanting company, I grab my little brother (I guilted him into it because otherwise he would have either been playing on the computer like he did during every waking moment that I was there or been at D&D with his buddies) and we headed off.

No problem finding Olathe, but really, what were they thinking with the directions? The street we were on was no longer even called what Mapquest called it. So I stop in a few gas stations, asking the slack-jawed attendants if they knew how to get on this street or that. Finally one of them had a sparkle of intelligence that the summer sun had yet to beat out of his head. He told us right how to get there. I hope Karma gave him a good kiss for me.

Five points for being clearly marked, Five demerits for a corny nameEnough novelty yarn to choke a horseWith a bit more snooping and U-turns (I've grown quite expert at U-turns after living here in Utah for a while), we finally found it. I was so excited! Upon entering, I was delighted to see it bursting with yarn and though the novelty yarn was in good supply, so were the other yarns. I found Mountain Colors, oh bliss! And my brother, the darling soul of my heart, was bored out of his ever-lovin' mind, it was vaguely alleviated by the entrance of the Yarn Puppy. He was the owner's dog, slightly skittish, but he knows a good soul when he sniffs one. My brother and he made friends and the owner let me photograph the wee doggeh.

A few notes about Knit Wits. 1. It's quieter than a morgue in there. 2. Only ONE of the staff was friendly, outgoing, and happy to see a customer. The rest seemed irritated at someone who might interrupt their knitting/crocheting. 3. 'spensive stuff, yo! If I'm paying for your yarn, gimme some love, okay? I hate going and getting yarn from snobs.

But despite that, a skein of Mountain Colors Bearfoot in Wild Raspberry adopted me (many more lunged at me and after I put them all back, the Wild Raspberry would not let me go). $20 but it was aaalll worth it.

I have more but it's almost 1pm and I have chores. So...TO BE CONTINUED.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

An Attack On All Of Us

I would like to point to this statement by the Mayor: given by Ken Livingstone

This is not an attack on London, this is not an isolated event. This is a terrorist attack and this cannot be ignored. This is an attack on Western Civilization, on conservatives, liberals, old, young, etc. All of you need to take a stand. Don't kiss these terrorist's asses anymore, tell them you will not let them take more lives, destroying hopes and dreams, smashing families.

I would like to see everyone finally get their heads out of the clouds and say HELL YEAH, ENOUGH'S ENOUGH!

My two cents.