Sunday, July 29, 2007

MCY has redeemed itself

I got an email this morning (Sunday!) from Erica at MCY letting me know she is sending me the skein of Eternity right away.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

It's my 100th post

Okay, so I missed my blog-aversary, but I noticed that this will be my 100th post, so there you go, your daily dose of random and useless information.

"Is that all the random and useless information you have?" you ask? Of course not.

Today was part two of the ongoing dental saga. I got one crown fitted, the other one was made improperly, so it has to be remade. I also got more scaling, because they hadn't done it all last time (unspoken message, "because your teeth were that gross"). I also got prepped for the next two crowns. Today's bill: 860,000 won ($900). Total to date: 1.36M ($1500).

Apparently, what I paid last time was just for the prep work, or something, so today I paid the remainder of the first two crowns and the first part of the second two. These will be gold due to the weakness of my teeth, or something like that. They are in the back, so I hope the gleam doesn't blind anyone. The other two will be ceramic. Period. They are the first two molars, there for all the world to see, and the world will not be seeing a metallic smile on my face.

So, halfway-ish done.

I still have not gotten an update on my "misplaced order" from MCY, since Monday. I've kind of given up hope. Unfortunately, I ordered it in mid-June, so eBay's 30 day window to get a refund has long since passed. I may still try.

Finally, as of today, there are 4701 people ahead of me on the Ravelry invite list. You can check your position here. I didn't sign up for over a month after I heard about it, because I thought it was about to be out of beta (so everyone could get in). By the time I decided I should go ahead and join, there were over 5000 people ahead of me, with about 100 getting invites each day.

That's about all the random, useless stuff going on here on the peninsula.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Phlox Fans Fini and MCY Needs Customer Service

First the good:

I finished the phlox fans I've been working on for two weeks. Pretty sad for such short socks, but I've been busy.

Then the bad:

I haven't been so busy that I haven't noticed the lack of MCY yarn in my mailbox. I sent them an email about it, as they suggested if the yarn didn't arrive in a timely manner. Their turn around time on customer service requests? A mere five days. The reply let me know that the person who did that wasn't in. The person who DOES do that emailed me he following day, to let me know she had no record of my order. I emailed her the details and haven't heard back. It's only been two days, so I should probably hear back Monday. The third Wednesday in September at the latest.

The silver lining, I suppose, is that I got the skein I really wanted. And that I'll be less tempted by their beautiful yarns since it has turned out to be a gamble if the yarn will ever arrive. (Yay! Saving money!)

I'll finish this with some more good:

A teacher decided to take another job after her summer vacation (okay, that's bad-- I really enjoyed working with her, but I digress), so my sister got an apartment to stay in while she's here. So she'll be much less likely to go home complaining about how psycho I am. I *may* be a little hard to live with.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Don't Rub My Buddha Belly

So my coworkers and I went out to dinner on Friday to celebrate the end of the semester and to say goodbye to one of the teachers and as we were paying, the proprietor and his friend wanted to shake my hand (only). They decided that my hand was cold and kept taking turns shaking it.

They then proceeded to give me some advice at length about how I needed to get some herbal medicine to fix my intestines so my hands would stop being cold. To emphasize the point, one of them rubbed my stomach. Really. Just put his hand on my and rubbed in a circle.

I sometimes feel like Korea is becoming Western so fast that in some ways it doesn't really feel Korean anymore, but that felt 100 percent Korean. My sister arrived safely last weekend and on Tuesday we celebrated Korean Constitution Day by going to Kyungbokkung Palace in Seoul. This is us in front of the lake. It was a great day. We saw a reenactment of the changing of the guard and she got to see some traditional Korean architecture.

This is the backside of the changing of the guard with downtown Seoul in the background.

Yesterday, at the KOTESOL meeting, I was told by a Korean member that I was suitable for a "Korean gentleman". The reason for this odd pronouncement? I was cleaning the tables before the other members arrived. So, apparently, the only qualification she thinks Korean men are looking for is a woman who cleans. Well, sign me up! Goodness knows all I'm looking for in a man is someone who wants a maid.


The current pair of Elann socks I'm working on, the purple ones, are getting pretty close to done. I'll post a pic of the completed pair next time.

I haven't really had any knitting time this week. The regular session ended at school and the new one starts tomorrow, so I've had progress reports and lesson plans. I took a morning class last month and was presented with a four page (front and back!) progress report to complete for each student. To be honest, I don't have eight pages to write about the students I've been teaching for the last six months, much less students I've taught for 4-5 weeks. So, I've been trying to improve my BS skills.

I keep getting more and more jealous of the people who got in on the Mystery Stole KAL. I don't know how I didn't hear about it, but I missed the sign up deadline by one day. Now that people are posting photos of their WIPs, I'm even more upset than I was. At least she'll be posting the pattern when it's all over. It would just be fun to be doing it with everyone else.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Waiter! I'll have a lukewarm broth and a water, hold the ice.

So, I finally had my dental appointment, after only three weeks of obsessing and mentally tallying the obscene amount of work I would need.

My director has a brother (or some kind of family) with a dental practice, so I went to see him. Foreigners don't get the dental portion of the national health care, so I just wanted to go to a dentist that would let me have a payment plan other than cash up front. I guess that point was really stressed that when the appointment was made, because they gave me a 30% discount and let me know which procedures were emergency and which could be done "over time". They were also very nice about my crap teeth and the unreasonable length of time since I last had them cared for.

So, today I got two crowns. I need four more, plus a couple regular fillings. You're probably thinking, "Six crowns! Eek!" however, notice the lack of implants. Not only are the teeth I thought were goners in fact salvageable, I didn't even lose part of a tooth (which started this whole thing). An old filling fell out, but it was a big filling, so it felt like I was missing some tooth.

I also got my teeth scaled, which is all the back of my lower front teeth needed-- no Granny grill for me just yet.

In fact, the worst part of today was the warning that, until the permanent crowns are all in place, I am not to have:
1. hot foods
2. cold foods
3. sticky foods
4. hard foods

Ummmm...okay, warm yogurt it is.

While I was traveling to and from the dentist, I finished the first sock of my third pair using the Elann Espirit. The two I have finished are very comfy and the perfect height for the weather (just tall enough to peek out of my shoes). This pair is Phlox and African Violet. Sorry for the shadow, Knievel was making sure there were no escape attempts and he would not be moved from his post.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

It's not a datedate (American title: Eeeek! Is it too late to lose twenty pounds by Friday?!)

A coworker is setting me up on a non-date (I don't need the pressure of a date-date) with a church friend of hers. I'm not sure I'm ready for a blind date, something about first date+doofus=many opportunities for embarrassment=stress.

He's a computer game designer (employed!) who looks to be in his mid-30s to mid-40s. I've only seen one pic and am horrible at guessing ages (I recently found out a friend I thought was "my age-ish" is my mom's age-ish). She assures me there is no obvious reason for him to be single.

I'll keep you posted. Let's just hope it's not the train wreck it could be. I have some suspicion that she may think we would be a good match based on the fact that we're the two oldest people in her circle of friends...


Yesterday, the DHL guy finally tracked me down after three unsuccessful attempts. I thought it was the MCY yarn I'm still waiting for, but it was... (cue the trumpets) the 2008 Knitting Pattern a Day calendar. With my pattern. There are some cute patterns and one pair of socks (at least) that I will be making. There are quite a few sock patterns. I think this calendar is improving with each year. Nary a garter stitch scarf pattern to be found. ;-) Scroll down to get info on how you can contribute a pattern to next year's edition. (Yes, I'm too lazy to link to it. It was only last week, you can scroll that far.)

Still haven't gotten that second skein of yarn from MYC. It's in the post, though, so that can't be controlled. Just for the record, I got a very polite email from them letting me know that it had been posted and thanking me for my business and asking me to contact them if it hadn't arrived in two weeks (that will be Thursday) since it was sent 1-5 day (domestic) mail. Since the label is in English, I'll give them through the weekend.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

I'm going to be an aunt! (for the fifth time)

My brother told me today that he and his wife are expecting their second child. It's hard to believe that they were once planning not to have children.

Even though it will be my fifth niece/ nephew, it makes me feel old when my siblings have milestones like this. My youngest brother just graduated from high school. Even though he was born after I was grown and gone, not having any siblings still in school makes me feel older (uni students are adults, after all). It makes me feel ESPECIALLY old that I was grown before he was born and now he's grown, too.

It also makes me feel old when one of my coworkers complains because "creepy old guys" keep asking her out. "Old" being... my age, give or take a year or two. Granted she's over ten years younger than me and at her age I wouldn't have dated guys my age. Still, I don't think I ever told coworkers that their age was old and gross. I hope I didn't. Well, okay, I'm pretty much a doofus with limited social graces, so I probably did, at some point, say something along those lines, but that was different-- it wasn't me that was old/ creepy. And let's not forget that at my birthday party last month, fewer candles were put on the cake than my actual age, to be "polite". You know, because pointing out that my age is no longer mentionable is polite.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Confessions of a People Watcher

It's true, I love to people watch and, you know, people snark, if you know what I mean. So, I've been wandering around the neighborhood my school is in during my lunch break in order to not feel like I'm stuck there for 12 hours a day.

Here are some random shots I've gotten this week. Fortunately, I'm a foreigner and therefore, crazy, so I can take photos of strangers. :-)

These two guys are sitting in the windowless space at a gutted bar enjoying their lunch hour. This gives you a teeny tiny taste of construction safety standards here. They are working on a place that is a "live" and "talking" bar. In actual English, that means there will be live music and opportunities to hook up (IE talking to strangers).

These guys were under the overpass on the river walk I take to get home. As you can see, they are practicing the violin for their lunch break.

Finally, this math school is an example of the "English" one can find on signage here. "Look! We're sophisticated and trendy! Study here!" (On the off chance that "criteria combing of math" is an actual thing, please edumacate me.)

Now one from home. The one skein of MCY yarn that I won on eBay that actually arrived. The other still hasn't arrived (ten-ish days later) because eBay and PayPal sometimes suck. It took about 8,000 emails to get it straightened out and having to re-explain it each time has made me not want to go into it again. I'll just say, all's well that ends well. Of course, I still don't have the yarn, so it hasn't actually ended well yet.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

You, too can be a calendar girl/ boy

I received this email about the 2009 Pattern A Day Calendars:

Hi,My name is Susan Ripley and I am gathering knitting and crochet patterns for the 2009 Pattern-A-Day Calendars from Accord Publishing. You were on our list of last year’s contributors and I am contacting you today in the hopes that you will submit a pattern or hang the attached flyer somewhere in your store or post it to your website / BLOG / PODCAST to let your friends and customers know about the design contest and the chance to get their designs published. You could also email the flyer if you have a mailing list.

Patterns are accepted from individuals, shops, charities and yarn companies. There are no restrictions and the patterns can also be something that is currently being distributed for free.Some of the yarn shops that have worked with us in the past have also offered fun pattern design/writing classes. This is a great way to get customers into your store while taking advantage of this great contest.

$500 will be awarded as First place for both calendars; there are also 2nd and 3rd place prizes; and all contributors whose patterns are used will receive a 2009 calendar. Please go to our website at and learn more about the submission requirements and our contest.

The deadline is December 15th, but early submissions are appreciated. If you have any questions, please contact me and I will gladly answer your questions. If your email program stripped the PDF, you can download the flyer at
Susan Ripley

The contribution process is pretty straightforward-- you just fill out a form and attach the pattern and photos. You can even mail it in, if you aren't comfortable with electronic submission. The only thing is, they don't tell you if your submission is accepted unless you win a prize. They post a list on their website.