23 February 2009

A Two-Item Bulleted List

* Is there any way that any one can convince me to actually like red kidney beans? Please suggest ways if you have them. I can buy them cheaply but I think they are gross. Sad quandry.

* I am enthralled with mint.com. Totally in love. I wanted to set up my E*Trade account with this level of filtering, but this mint thing is much much better. And faster. And yes I/we have very negative net worth but you know ... okay I have no consolations. It's better to know about. (And my biggest loan isn't even loaded on there yet! Ha! Sigh.)

* BONUS ITEM I am trying new things with my hair; this is embarrassing. I do think about my hair, but I also go to lectures on design by guys from Patagonia and walk out feeling certain I could have explained the brand and business model better BY FAR. Hello stand-up shorts and the history of recycled fleece? Hello great cuts for women and a mind for color? And he didn't mention their "send it back" program. Which I hope still exists ... oh good it does, with less glamorous shots of beat-up shorts than I remember in decade-old catalogs.

22 February 2009

Calmer with Fingerless Mitts

All right, I'm feeling a little calmer.

Not doing hardly anything at all makes my arms feel so much better. It's ridiculous. No pain meds today, and I'm feeling fine so far. Of course, the most intense things my arms have done today is 1) hold a phone and 2) mend some knitted fingerless mitts of mine that I literally WORE THROUGH, breaking the yarn (not even at the end!) and subsequently patched up some hanging loose stitches. Oy, how much I rely on these mitts, which hopefully you can see on here ...

Anyone who's wishing they had something to knit, I can hook you up with yarn and a pattern ... and you can knit me new ones! I have yarn and ideas for two, maybe three pairs. The faster you knit, the better.

My friend Adam is doing a cool thing, publishing a handmade chapbook of one poem (of someone else's) and distributing them for free.

Feeling also absent-minded today, like, what should I do today? Huh? How many hours just passed? Wha? Eat cookies and plan installation art in my head? Sounds all right.

But perhaps the big thing is ... career, job, life, injury, what to do, what to decide not to do in order to stay better, and weighing, where can I convince people that my voice software is awesome and will be great for me, that yeah giving me a single office is totally worth it, and that, while I could invoke the ADA whenever, they really want to hire me before a legal battle ensues ... and I don't really want to get into any of that. Today, I want to design fabric in a really large workspace and run some installation shows. Maybe sell on etsy.com. Forget words; words, you bring pain, lately. I want my knitting back.

19 February 2009

What Not to Talk to a Hand Surgeon About

My new doctor wants me to have radial tunnel release surgery. One of the main risks of the surgery is that you can lose nerve ennervation and muscle strength in the back of your hand ... and the pain might not go away, and the compression might not be over. Oh and they can accidentally sever the nerve. And it puts your arm mostly out of commission for over a month, and it's only fully back after three months.

Not a surgery I'm interested in. He is a hand surgeon, so I guess his recommendation would be surgery.

Totally disheartening visit ... left me really hopeless, i.e., will I ever get better, why am I not better, why is the world so bad, when will I get better, will it be before my life changes drastically as everybody thought in September when I began treatment ... this could make moving cross-country v. difficult ... why does this doctor act like I'm lying to him about where I feel pain, saying crap like "I only have proof that you have radial tunnel and that your forearm should hurt" but clearly more hurts than that, et al, et al. So I dropped out of the world for the evening and feel better now. And I did dishes, and I don't feel like I hurt myself, and that is awesome.

17 February 2009

Official In The Way That Only A Big Check Can Be

This claim thing is official. The check for back-pay (for temporary partial disability pay) came in today, and wahoo, I am breathing a little better. And I talk to a doctor on Thursday! For the first time in two months! Unbelievable. I started this claim almost six months ago. But it is happening, and that is a blessing.

I don't think or talk blessings a lot these days--I'm not sure what I think about them--but today I am thinking about them in an essentialist manner, kind of like I know it when I see it. This claim is a blessing in that way. Also there's anger in a "I got hurt doing my job correctly" way, but leaving bitterness aside, I am focusing on knowing the medical bills are paid, and focusing on recovery.

Recovery ... which still means doing nothing, inexplicable pains in my arms, and, despite being careful, wearing elbow pads and lately wrist braces, being totally achy and done after six hours of work. I feel like I should be able to carry things with my arms and hands by now. And do dishes every day. And not be in pain after doing NOTHING AT ALL. But this is the nature of injury, I guess; I can tell my body is happiest when I am totally resting, relaxed, and on enough pain meds. I should probably meditate daily. Meditating is really hard, though. You would think that years of hippie training would make it easy. I am a high-anxiety hippie, though.

The other happy thing that came in the mail today is my book holder. I am in love. Back story: holding books open hurts my thumbs, palms and elbows, really my whole arm, and books are obviously something I will not go without, unlike, say, the act of vacuuming. (Thanks, Noah!) And a book holder is cheaper than a Roomba. Off to bed with my electric blanket and book holder, to swoon together and approach old age before my third decade.

16 February 2009


Or would the style authorities I know call that an unnecessary hyphen? CMS might.

I will attend a yogurt-making class on Saturday at my local co-op! I am so excited. I do vaguely know how to make yogurt, or perhaps more accurately I know how yogurt is made. Even the class description mentioned that 4000 years ago, people were making yogurt, without a $50 W-S yogurt maker. (No hyphen that time. I should write a style sheet for myself.) But I am no nomad, I do not have this dairy-curdling in my mostly northern European blood, and for a $5 attendance fee I could have bought yogurt. And then I would eat it and it would be gone, but the eight ounces of starter I will take home after the class will make LIMITLESS YOGURT.

Yogurt is one of the top reasons I'm not vegan--soy yogurt is pretty gross. Maybe making my own could be better ... not sure of that one.

Okay, really, whenever I talk the big vegan game, someone should say, "Hey, remember that time in college you told your friends you might as well be vegan--while eating a piece of pizza with not only cheese, but ham and pineapple on it?" Yeah, I remember.

Also, the co-op sent the email today at 12:30pm, I read it around 1, and when I signed up at 7:55, I took the last spot. YOGURT-MAKING IS HOT.

Slouchy Slouch

Maybe I'm watching too much Project Runway.

Book holder, oh when will you arrive? I have real books to read.

15 February 2009

Cookies and Kelsey Keyes

I bet Kelsey would make cookies with me. Like espresso-chocolate shortbread, and toasted coconut shortbread, and super ginger cookies.

I want cookies.

Kelsey Keyes, make me cookies!!! Okay you don't have to.

12 February 2009

Procrastination, Dinner, and a Poem, but Not AWP

For all writers of all kinds: Shauna talks about procrastination.

Yeah, I might not eat meat anymore. Like for real.

How good it is to have burritos with a friend, and some wine, and some assisted paper-cutting.

Enjoy AWP, yall. Maybe I'll see you in Denver next year. I do love Boulder.

I wrote a poem today; my hands ached like crazy after handwriting for a few hours at work today; I had tasty dinner; I had tasty wine; I did not make truffles. I really want to adapt this recipe to make cardamom-infused truffles. Yum, cardamom and dark chocolate.

Yeah, I did write a poem today. I'm back to my every-six-months routine, unlike some people I know, cough adam cough. It's a poem about winter and losing earrings in snow-covered parking lots and finding them in spring. Mashed flat by your car.

Talk about spoilers ...

11 February 2009

Newsprint and Fountain Pens

Today I discovered I really like writing on newsprint with a fountain pen. And if I listen to Vaughn Williams' "The Lark Ascending" while I write with those two things, I can write about difficult things without freaking out too much. So, big yay for newsprint and its cheapness, the fountain pen I already own, and last.fm having "Lark" easy to find.

Okay weird right hand middle finger knuckle aching, I will go to bed.

10 February 2009

Victory! I think!

My worker's compensation claim was finalized today, in my favor, as in, "yes this is work-related." I will really believe this when I get a check for 66% back pay, and I see that the medical bills this has already accrued are paid.

But really dudes!

I see a doctor next Thursday who is going to treat me!!!

The final final final word on my diagnosis seems to be:
radial tunnel syndrome
de Quervian's tenosynivitis
and more tendinitis
and maybe there were carpal tunnel symptoms, but maybe not, early on.

Which means treatment is blessed hot packs, massage, and ultrasound, and stretches galore.

Today, though, is sinus headache day, which I've been hitting back with yogurt and granola. And decongestant etc. Off for more of that.

08 February 2009


Today I am doing things!

I want to be eating these cookies. Maybe I will make them and THEN eat them.

I'm about to be dyeing yarn in a orange red pale color. Hard to explain. I have the image in my head and can maybe make it happen--which makes me feel like I'm composing again (I composed classical music for strings for a very short time a long time ago) because I composed multiple parts in my head and then had to figure out how to write it down.

Also I hung some art for the first time and switched out some other art today in my apartment, and it is like I have a new apartment. Or at least I'm noticing a wall now that I didn't notice before because it's white like the other walls ... suddenly my apartment is bigger.

Perhaps I am reading a little too much design*sponge, or not enough, but I want to do everything. Or at least hold stamping classes and charge $90 a person per hour.

My arms are starting to feel better than they did a week ago, when the pain went crazy. Doing nothing at all has been good to them. Imagine that--stop using a body part that's injured and it heals a little. Rest = less inflammation and compression. Insert a Neo whoa here.

I am also about to purchase a book holder. Holding books open is proving to be pain-inducing, which is what happens when your thumbs are injured ... and palms ... and elbows ... anyway, since all of you readers are also readers of books, I may end up recommending the thing if it is as good as it seems. Suspend judgment for now.

07 February 2009

Shout-out to Kelsey Keyes! And food!

I'm going to be writing today about my friend Kelsey, that's Kelsey Ann Clough Keyes, who is great in a multitude of ways. This is going to be different from the kind of things I usually write about my blog, so you may want to stop reading now. However, if you have some time to waste, I'd appreciate it if you click on the links I'm going supply below. This is all in an effort to spread peace and love about Kelsey throughout the Internet, with a secondary purpose of manipulating Google’s search algorithm.

My favorite things about Kelsey have a lot to do with some of my favorite things in life -- knitting, eating food, watching good television, and hanging out with friends. Today I'm going to focus on eating food and how awesome food itself is and how awesome the food that Kelsey feeds me is, in particular.

There is a memorable roasted garlic soup. I think it was winter. I remember it was just as salty as it should be, and there were a lot of tomatoes in it, and that bread plus that soup made for a really tasty time of eating.

I should also mention the hot buttered rum, the very messy mango lassis, and the bars of chocolate, and a plate of ridiculously good cookies and confections that she left me before Christmas. She also left a plate for my neighbor, which almost did not make it to him because I was going to keep them all and eat them. By myself.

Let it be known that my friend Kelsey is ridiculously awesome, a really good baker and cook, a friend to vegan food, and a friend to me. You can read more about her at the following blogs:


04 February 2009

An Unnumbered List of Beautiful Things

"Yes, the springtimes needed you." -- Rilke, first elegy

Empty glass jars.

Winter overcast light.

Bare branches.

Sleeping faces.

Creaking, drafty, unevenly-sinking homes.


All the candle holders I received as wedding gifts: the glass block ones, poured in a mold that left edges like a milk carton would; the single piece of sandstone for four votives in a grid; the small mirrored tray with glass votive holders and molded glass edging. How they all fit on the edges of my bathtub.

Books with their set type and unmoving written language.

* * *

Do the springtimes need me? Do they need me to survive the winter, to witness their arrival? Will they happen if I don't watch?

* * *

Big spike in pain this week, no reason why. Lots of baths with epsom salt and lots of painkillers. Think anti-inflammation and anti-compression thoughts for me.