Thursday, February 18, 2010

Sock it to me

Socks. I learned to knit my first pair of socks within the past month. Unfortunately the only creature/human that they will fit are: a) a yeti b.)Bozo the clown. Somehow I managed to knit some gigantic socks that would apparently do well for a diabetic, fluid-resuscitated transplant patient whose feet are so big that they require a separate bed.

So... what do I do next? Why, start knitting a second pair of socks of course.
I am using an unidentified sock yarn, maroon in color w/ silver sparkles. It is not as stretchy as the Madtosh and should knit up much tighter. Should being the key word. I am also using the correct size needles.

In other news... I would be remiss in not mentioning the "Blizzaggedon" or whatever the hell they are calling the snowstorm. I could go on and on about how completely ridiculous and horrible the plows were (still are) in Baltimore and how it seems completely unacceptable that 2 weeks later the roads are still not plowed and will probably never be, or how the plow drivers apparently missed the class on how to plow properly, how idiotic people are when they drive in their giant SUV's and Hummers one block to the store to get beer despite a driving ban so that people could actually shovel w/o having to stop every minute to let the assh*les who decide to drive around for no reason, but I won't. And the chair in the parking spaces is unbelievable. I don't remember ever seeing chairs in spaces in the 30 some odd years that I lived in Rochester. Oh, but see the plows actually knew what they were doing and so the streets were actually cleared properly. Baltimore is pathetic. The city cannot even handle a snowstorm, so I can only imagine what would happen during a terrorist attack or natural disaster. I really really need to move. I have never lived in a place that I despised so much. Ok maybe I need anger management.

My wild cowgirl beagle AKA Sally Ann Brown is going to class! I am taking a 6 week training class from Bmore Charming School located at Howl in Hampden. It will be a group class so I imagine I will have a horror story or two to tell. Sally needs to learn that attacking other dogs is not ok. And dragging me down the street howling and on the scent trail is not ok as well as running out the door and galloping down the street. I would also prefer she not eat cat poo or poo in general but I doubt that they will teach her that.

Oh and I have to mention the anal gland "incident" that occurred two nights ago at 3am. Several years ago I was delegated the "anal gland person" for the dogs after my mother learned that we could learn how to do it ourselves instead of going to the vet every 4 weeks at $20 per dog. When I say "we" I really mean ME. I had to learn how to express anal glands with non-compliant dogs with one hand while managing to hold a muzzle and lift a tail without having my face ripped off. I had to learn how to "inject" antibiotics into anal glands in order to clear up horrible infections with pus and god knows what else pouring out. Have you seen an anal gland? Of course not because they are located INSIDE the dog's rectum. Can you imagine trying to find the microscopic opening to inject antibiotic cream in under a minute before the dog goes ballistic? If there is such a thing as "Master anal gland expresser" I am it. So... back to the Sally incident. I was laying in bed, wide awake as my mother gasped and snored the night away in the room next door (still no results from sleep study) around 3am. Sally started scratching and licking (ugh) and I got up to wipe her, um, private areas with some baby wipes to stop her from licking and to make sure she was clean. Not sure what happened next as it is still a blur from the PTSD I suffered, but I can piece together enough to know that when I wiped her anal gland exploded all over me, my hands and the bed. Yes, exploded. I guess when she licked or scratched it opened things up to the point where just a slight touch caused detonation. I really didn't go back to sleep after that. I had to wash with clorox, change the sheets, clean the dog, and take some klonopin in order to calm down. If anyone has smelled the remnants of anal glands you know that it is tantamount to necrotic bowel. My room stank. Sally stank. I stank. My sheets stank. It was horrific. Katy ran like a bat out of hell and cowered in the corner thoroughly shell-shocked.


It was my birthday on February 5th! I am no longer a soon-to-be 41 year old!

Cake, cake and more cake.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Cowboys and Indians

I recently acquired what I call, a cowgirl beagle named Sally, from a woman who rescues pups from certain death in Southern pounds. After my beloved Hannah died I mistakenly thought my puff ball Katy would appreciate a canine pal to hang with, so I fostered her, as I was broke from Hannah's expensive surgery.

Katy hates Miss Sally, cowgal extraordinaire, with a passion, as much as Miss Sally despises her. The fights have trickled down since Sally recovered from her mistaken belief that I was her fur child, but last night as I watched a biopic on Patti Smith and decided to chow down on some goldfish (the cracker not actual chordata), Sally howled "!Viva la revolucion!" and attacked. Katy, my little poodle/brittany scrapper, did not surrender. As I gulped my goldfish, scattered the box all over the floor and bed, screamed for my mother to get her a** in the room, attempted to crawl quickly on my post-surgical knee, fell over, got back up, fell down again, I reached the battle and managed to pull the bloody pair apart, while peeing my pants. Yes, that is correct. The combined excitement of having cable TV after approximately 6 years of not owning a TV, watching Patti Smith, and the blood and gnashing teeth, caused me to piddle all over myself.

In other news, it is New Years Eve day! I finished the celtic cable neckwarmer for my mom and have started one for myself with the softest most comforting yarn evah!

I have also decided to go on a Carribean cruise. It's nice to have completely unattainable desires.

Here is a lovely photo of my Grandmother, Molly Blumenthal, her mother-in-law (my ggrandmother Adelaide Stegemann, and Dorothy, her daughter (my great-Aunt), in the Park in Rochester, NY.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Take a guess?

I am a huge supporter of adopting dogs from the Humane Society, Rescue society's, etc rather than going to a breeder or GOD FORBID a Puppy Mill. But I have always been curious as to what breed (s) make up my little gremlin girl (my icon pic), Katy. We adopted her about 7-8 years ago from the Humane Society when she was only 9months old and a dirty, flea-infested, matted, stray dog. I finally managed to send off for one of those DNA canine kits and should get the results back in a couple of weeks. I am going out on a limb and place my guess as a "papipoo", or Poodle/Papillion mix. My mom thinks she is part terrier and maybe poodle.

Anyone else want to place a guess?

She weighs about 16-18lbs and has curly hair and her hair grows super long if I don't cut it. She is super sweet and affectionate and very smart. She is trained (unlike all of my previous dogs) and loves to romp and skip and race through open spaces.

More pics to follow...

Monday, November 30, 2009

Swimming with the fishes

Lately my life is attracting elements of water-frozen and solid, aquatics, and fishes (fishies?). My surgery required frequent icings, I have been craving ice cold water lately, my doctor wants me to swim at least 4 times a week (and lose 50 lbs) and I just received the most beautiful goldfish bag evah! Swimmy is my all time fav bag character.
Photobucket Photobucket

Thank you piddleloop sewing team (and Lucy and Samuel). Jen and her sister run the shop and are the most generous, fabulous power duo in the universe. When Hannah was sick they held a fundraiser and when she died they raised over $1K so that I could pick up her ashes. They oftentimes sew and sell like mad women, donating all of their winnings to help someone out.

I got an extra little gift included which was one of the bags that remained from the Hannah sale. So my little Hannah and Swimmy bag are my new two favorite things in the world.

I am going to be doggie/house sitting this weekend so things should be low key and relaxing- plus there will be cable TV!

Trying to stay positive so I will not mention my post-op ortho visit, except to say that I had one.

Back to knitting my tapestry cowl so I can start on other projects.


Sunday, November 29, 2009

Post-surgical Thanksgiving blues

It's hard to come up with apt, witty titles for my blog so I am just typing whatever pops into my head first. Surgery was a disaster- but I will save my lovely readers the drama and pity. I did not get my knee replacement- just got scoped which has turned an already inflamed knee into a super duper inflamed knee. My computer is also going wacko so if you see odd letters randomly placed- it was not from my typing.

I have been steadily working on my tapestry cowl. Here are the most recent results:Photobucket

I forgot how long double-sided knitting takes. I just bought the softest most beautiful yarn called Eco Alpaca- from Cascade Yarns (1528). I could only afford one skein. It should be enough for my new favorite projects (the cowl obsessions). I am thinking of doing the celtic cowl which was created by a local Baltimorian (notice I did not say Baltimoron b/c she is a cool knitter).

Otherwise, work has been so-so. Usual miserable folks trying to make others be miserable folks. I refuse to be sucked into the negative vortex. So I will continue to stay positive and live my life.

Today is a beautiful sunny clear day. I have the windows open and may try and take the dogs out for a quick walk. My knee hurts too much to do anything other than down the block and back. Tonight my mom and I plan to walk down the street to 34th St and take some photos of the Christmas set up. Every year 34th Street goes all out and decorates every house to the hilt in lights and decorations and artistic expressions of Christmas. People come every night in droves (some from out of town!) to see the "Miracle" on 34th St. Luckily I live on the corner of 34th so I can walk and take the dogs. Of course this also means getting a parking spot immediately after leaving work. No running errands, etc or I will be parking miles away (a bit of an exaggeration but a kernel of truth).

Nothing very exciting or fascinating to report. Oh, except my car was booted and I had to pay $400 b/c of the wonderful Baltimore Parking Authority's error (5th expensive error for me) and then they put a flag on my vehicle from the DMV (another error) and I have a court date for the tickets but they will not reimburse me for their error because..... because... THEY CAN AND THERE IS NOTHING I CAN DO ABOUT IT BECAUSE BALTIMORE IS A CORRUPT, APATHETIC CIRCLE IN THE FROZEN CENTER OF HELL.

Oops! Did that slip out? My battery also died on Howard St so I had to push my car into the Auto Parts store where I met "Pastor" Mike and Kenny, homeless mechanics extraordinaire. It took them 2 hours in the freezing pouring rain to change my battery but I was treated to some tall tales which made up for the wait. Pastor Mike killed his first wife by driving into a brick wall at a high rate of speed with his 5 year-old in the back seat (unharmed). Needless to say they gave his child to his mother and he lives in his car with his new wife. Kenny lives with his wife/gf who just kicked him out. His comments were more about lubing the nuts and bolts and sticking them back in the hole. Pastor Mike was very appreciative of my tip and offered to do some more work, but it was close to 8:30pm and I still had not gone home so I declined. My car is back in working order and hopefully will not catapult my battery into an unsuspecting pedestrian or car as I am not quite convinced that Pastor Mike or Kenny knew what they were doing.

I will leave you with another photo of me as a rockstar:


Sunday, November 8, 2009

Ballad of El Goodo

"There ain't no one going to turn me 'round."

Words to live by Alex. Unfortunately my hormonally challenged gender confused beagle foster turned me 'round right into a brick wall and nearly fractured my wrist. I look like a prize fighter with a massively swollen hand and wrist and arm that is a lovely shade of purple today. People at work think I am mentally ill and I am sure some suspect abuse. But I can hardly admit that my foster beagle who is in false pregnancy and thinks I am her puppy is abusing me. I think all the excitement of x-rays, ice, wraps and meds made me violently ill on Friday night- or I have an ulcer. Even my beloved friend Ms. Phenergan could not rectify the situation.

In knitting news I am going to attempt the Tapestry Cowl

I am using a dark grey and a deep red which I hope will show the contrast of the colors quite nicely. I guess double knitting is not like riding a bike because I have made several double knitted items and totally forgot how to do it. Thank god for online video tutorials

I also dyed my hair back to a more "natural" dark color. Why does your hair get darker as you age? I started out lightbrown/blonde and have slowly approached a very dark brown. My co-workers saw photos of me back as an undergrad when I actually cared what I looked like and all suggested I darken my hair so I actually took their advice. I guess we shall see what the consensus is.

Surgery is rapidly approaching! Pre-ops on Monday and surgery the following Tuesday. I ordered new running shoes to celebrate (shhhh don't tell my surgeon) and I am joining the fabulous new expensive gym at the University where I work. YEAH!!!!

I feel this blog in incomplete without a photo so here is a photo of my grandfather when he was an undergrad at the University of Michigan. I'll bet that you can guess the year.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Gas is good

Theme of the day: Gas, belching, borborygmus, etc. You have no idea how many phone calls I receive about gas, bowel movements, foul smells, and just plain morons. I get calls stating that they have sprouted hernias overnight because they don't want to go to work. Must be a new phenomenon because hernias generally do not grow like tulips. All day every day I listen to the less than intelligent ramblings of people who should not be allowed to live without constant intelligent supervision. Occasionally I will get the coke head who will start screaming at me about something that he already screamed to me about but forgot because he is so high.

I don't mean to sound supercilious or insensitive but after years of these calls and patients my tolerance is rapidly declining into a skein that has one more stitch. Many of the patients are uneducated or are homeless- or live with abusive or even less intelligent individuals. But when someone waits until their wound or colostomy is septic and necrotic you run out of words to say. For example: one of the patients went dancing w/o a colostomy bag. Two words: Sweet moses!

So today the word of the day is "gas." As in "I keep eating spicy, ethnic foods with beans and fried food and for some reason I have really bad gas. I want to speak to the surgeon NOW!"
Or, " Someone called me- do you know who it was? I didn't get their name or number but they had a funny name."

Sometimes I sit and ponder my decision making ability and how on earth I ended up taking calls about gas and stool after going to Graduate school for American history and Archaeology. Did I miss the bus? Was it the drugs? Am I a masochist? Or am I just stupid?

Things to ponder while picking up the phone for another gas, stool, drainage, surgical nightmare issue.

Oh and I still have no idea what I am going to knit next. Suggestions, suggestions to all of my faithful readers!! Oh, that's right I am the only one who reads this.