Monday, June 29, 2009

Personal story time....

... this post (read the linked article), brought to mind a story I heard many years ago. Some of the details may be faulty (we're talking 25 years ago, folks), but the essence is accurate.

I was working in a hospital research laboratory, and my "partner" was a research fellow. She was originally from Ireland, via residency in a prestigious London hospital (the name of which escapes me some 20 odd years later). She was an extremely brilliant and interesting individual. She was a little unusual, and we shared many stories when we were working together. She was also a knitter and we had a few miscommunications regarding jumpers and afghans. But that's another post.

When she was completing her residency in London, she gave birth to a son. It was a normal uncomplicated birth, however, the infant didn't thrive. In fact, he was not eating very much. As those of you who have given birth know, hungry newborns are very loud and insistent, and Robert, was no exception, except he only got a few tablespoons in him at a time. Something was clearly amiss, however, the pediatrician was not scheduled for this big hospital until later in the week, and the staff didn't think it was critical. My colleague, however, being a doctor, the mother, and all, knew differently, something was dreadfully amiss. As they approached the 36 hour mark, and the baby still wasn't taking enough milk, she began to bitch, to no avail. However, when the baby exhibited projectile vomiting bad enough to hit the hospital wall, it capped it. Little Robert had pyloric stenosis. It didn't matter, now that it was clear, at least to my colleague, Robert needed a surgeon, she was still put in a queue, while her baby was slowly starving.

In order to have her child moved up the queue, she practically had to threaten everyone with bodily harm, and finally the pediatric surgeon showed up. Robert's valve was repaired, and everything was fine. She never forgave the British health care system for torturing her baby. Here in the US, a baby would never go this long between diagnosis and treatment. An idiot can diagnosis pyloric stenosis. How do I know? My nephew developed pyloric stenosis, and he was in surgery the same day. A world of difference.

Most people are worried about not getting to choose their doctor...that's the least of the worries people. What really matters is not being able to choose your TREATMENT. And the older you get, the fewer options you will have. Think about that.

Friday, June 26, 2009

No offense .....

.... to Michael fans out there...but preempting programming....really?

It's just too much....way too much. He was a misbegotten, talented, probable pedophile, with mental problems that I couldn't even begin to guess.

Seriously, world, get a grip.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Catch up...

May was a whirlwind month. What with classes ending I don't know which end is up. My "business" is indirectly proportional to whether there are classes. The Penguins in the Stanley Cup (and giving us fits!), means that our lives revolve around whether they are playing or not in the evenings. We spent a little time at a jazz festival and outlet shopping last weekend. And we will have family stuff the next three. Also let me say that I still have wool sweaters and turtlenecks in my bursting closet. (And bought more WOOL clothing at the Pendelton outlet in sizes that actually fit!) I was smart enough to dig out a few polo shirts and shorts to tied me over, but it looks like it will be July before I "reorganize". That being said I have been knitting. Not all of it is going well.

First up Embossed Leaves socks.

I really like the sock pattern, this is the second time I've knit it. You may remember the first. Notice the difference in the patterning in the yarn. I'm not convinced that I like the color patterning in this version. In fact, I know I don't. These were knit with Pacapeds alpaca blend. Lovely, soft yarn, but a tad splitty. The fancy, schmancy, cast on and the twisted rib combined to make it rather tight around the top. (Also I make them about 7 inches long rather than 6 or shorter. I hate shortie socks.) So for the second sock I used a long tail cast-on and it was much more flexible.

Knitting Lies

And I really mean it. I am knitting a cardigan from Cherry Tree Hill Oceania. A merino boucle yarn. I bought the put up over a year ago and it was around 1600 yards. It literally took HOURS to wind into useable cakes. I was petrified that if I screwed up it would be a mess to rip. Fortunately that is not the case, because here's what I got as I started the back.

See the big streak of gray right in the middle. Attractive no? I know what you're thinking.....why the heck didn't the idiot knit with two balls? Well, the bad news is that the idiot was so paranoid about ripping boucle, that she DID knit from two different balls. Yes, indeedy, and that is what I got. Charming? Then look down a little farther....see the hole?

Right here.

Now it isn't like I wasn't checking as I was knitting along. But all of a sudden there is a hole. Not a dropped stitch, but I somehow did a M1 without knowing it. There was nothing I could do. Fortunately, for all concerned, meaning me, the M1 occurred below the gray clump. I ripped to the hole without too many tears, and began again. And how far along was I? See the stitch marker? That's where the armhole shaping began. (I always mark the point where some change takes place, so I can compare the other pieces.) I was already making the arm scythe (I always wanted to use that word) shaping. Now I have to hope that I didn't choose a too small size. I am making the medium because the large seemed to be sized out to be enormous.

It has not been a satisfying knitting month.