Wednesday, November 01, 2006

With the end of the semester fast approaching, I am quite pleased with my progress. I have my prelims scheduled for Dec 11th and my grant proposal is ready for its first critique tomorrow. I found out last week that the man's vacation doesn't roll over to 2007 so we have to use it by the end of November. At first I was quite angry because I had asked him a hundred times to make sure we don't have to use all the vacation days and each time he said, "Honey, it rolls over". Grrr. Okay. So I moved my prelim date back two weeks and started planning. We're taking a mini-break to Minnesota for 5 days to see his family, my family, and our friends. Should be a nice and relaxing break from all this grant business. There is a brand new hotel with and indoor water park so my little sister and I are going to have such a great time!! Speaking of which, I recently got email for her... I love it. Her messages are the cutest and they really cheer me up on a bad day!

We recently had a small run-in with our landlord which I have no idea how to deal with. It all began with a pounding on our door at 9:30 at night asking man to come outside. I stay in because I'm not fond of this man and usually man takes care of interactions with landlord. However, a few minutes later I hear that the conversation isn't very friendly and I venture outside to see what all the rucous is. Landlord is screaming at man about his house getting egged and man not cleaning it off while landlord was gone on vacation. Um...okay. Unlike landlord we have full time jobs and lives outside of smoking cigarettes in the backyard and eviciting non paying tenants. So, landlord looks at me (me with straight face and arms crossed) and stares, eventually giving me the I hate you grimmace. Okay. Fine. He slams the door and returns to his side of the duplex. I discuss the happenstance iwth man who says he just needed someone to yell at and I was there. Man works in this type of situation daily and apparently handles it much better than I do. I tell him I'm going to go over and settle this. Bad Idea...maybe. I knock on landlords door and he answers with look of confusion. I say landlord, I apologize for not removing the eggs off your house while you were gone but you need to watch the way you talk to man. It is completely innappropriate and should not happen again. If you have problems with us as tenants we need to schedule a meeting and discuss the issues rationally. Apparently you can't say rational to the irrational. He begins yelling at me. "Why don't you guys just move out?" Um... because we love our house and we signed a year long lease. He says that we can move out if we want. Um. no. Anywyas, it proceeds like this until he starts yelling about all the other things he is upset about... which only one has something to do with us... we got paint on his ladder... I offered to clean it or replace it... he changed the subject. Obviously looking for something to upset about. It has been one day since this happened and luckily we weren't forced into any confrontations yesterday. I wrote him this letter that will be delivered if we don't recieve an apology or an explaination in the next week or so.


1. Umbrella
2. Paint on step ladder
3. Mowing the lawn
4. Washer and Dryer
5. Egged house

This letter is in response to the accusations made by our landlord, Dave Teeter, on 10.30.06. I have created a list of the things that you indicated were bothering you about M & K as tenants at Bleep.
Since the day we moved in you have been very free with sharing the use of your things, especially those which are in our shared backyard (pool, grill, picnic table). We have used these items on occasion and for that we are thankful. At one point M went out into the backyard and the umbrella on the picnic table had blown over. When he attempted to rectify it he found that it had been broken. He promptly informed you that the wind had broken your umbrella and at the time you never questioned the circumstances. Last night, three months later, you decided that we had intentionally broken the umbrella which is not the case as it was clearly broken due to being older and being exposed to the elements.
When we first moved in we used your step ladder to paint our bedroom. We returned it promptly in July and now you are angry that there is paint on it. Last night I apologized for that and we will clean your step ladder or we will replace it.
When we were signing the lease you verbally requested that we mow the lawn and scoop the snow on the driveway, using your equipment, whenever you were away or asked us to. Over the summer the occasion never arouse that we needed to mow the yard and when you were on vacation your shed was locked so we would have been unable to mow even if we wanted to.
Last month the washer we were currently using broke mid-cycle so we switched out the washers (we had 2 in our basement) and M informed you that the washer had broken. You responded by calling over a maintenance worker and when he plugged the washer back in, it began to work as though nothing had happened. You paid the bill and for that we are thankful because our lease states that the washer and dryer were not guaranteed.
While you were gone on vacation, you asked M to pick up your mail (of which there wasn’t any) and watch out for your place. Your house was egged at some point while you were away and we did not clean it up, for which we are sorry. We were very busy ourselves during this time and we should have been better neighbors and cleaned up the eggs for you. In reply to the accusation that we were responsible for egging your house due to the appearance of eggs only on your house and garage, we are under the impression that the most likely culprits are the people you recently evicted from your other rental properties. We have not, to this point, had any problem with you as a landlord and we do not act impulsively and immaturely when we are upset.
Last night you asked us to move out and I’m uncertain if this was due to your apparent anger at the time or if you were serious. We signed a year long lease and we have paid our rent on time, taken care of our house, and we have not broken any of the terms defined on the lease. We intend to stay for the remainder of our lease and hopefully our verbal agreement allowing us to stay on a month to month basis until K finishes school still stands.
Due to recent events we’re going to be unable to mow the law but we will scoop our driveway using our own shovels over the winter. Things break, normal wear and tear happens, and we can’t afford to be responsible for your possessions and especially the maintenance of your lawn mowers or snow blower.

We hope that this can all be put in the past and we can continue having a quiet and peaceful living situation.

M & K

What to do...oh what to do.


Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Once on a yellow piece of paper with green lines
he wrote a poem
And he called it "Chops"
because that was the name of his dog
And that's what it was all about
And his teacher gave him an A
and a gold star
And his mother hung it on the kitchen door
and read it to his aunts
That was the year Father Tracy
took all the kids to the zoo
And he let them sing on the bus
And his little sister was born
with tiny toenails and no hair
And his mother and father kissed a lot
And the girl around the corner sent him a
Valentine signed with a row of X's
and he had to ask his father what the X's meant
And his father always tucked him in bed at night
And was always there to do it
Once on a piece of white paper with blue lines
he wrote a poem
And he called it "Autumn"
because that was the name of the season
And that's what it was all about
And his teacher gave him an A
and asked him to write more clearly
And his mother never hung it on the kitchen door
because of its new paint
And the kids told him
that Father Tracy smoked cigars
And left butts on the pews
And sometimes they would burn holes
That was the year his sister got glasses
with thick lenses and black frames
And the girl around the corner laughed
when he asked her to go see Santa Claus
And the kids told him why
his mother and father kissed a lot
And his father never tucked him in bed at night
And his father got mad
when he cried for him to do it.
Once on a paper torn from his notebook
he wrote a poem
And he called it "Innocence: A Question"
because that was the question about his girl
And that's what it was all about
And his professor gave him an A
and a strange steady look
And his mother never hung it on the kitchen door
because he never showed her
That was the year that Father Tracy died
And he forgot how the end
of the Apostle's Creed went
And he caught his sister
making out on the back porch
And his mother and father never kissed
or even talked
And the girl around the corner
wore too much makeup
That made him cough when he kissed her
but he kissed her anyway
because that was the thing to do
And at three a.m. he tucked himself into bed
his father snoring soundly
That's why on the back of a brown paper bag
he tried another poem
And he called it "Absolutely Nothing"
Because that's what it was really all about
And he gave himself an A
and a slash on each damned wrist
And he hung it on the bathroom door
because this time he didn't think
he could reach the kitchen.

This poem is taken out of my favorite book- The Perks of Being a Wallflower. It is terribly sad but everytime I read it I am reminded of the ability to change and that bad days are always followed by good ones.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

The semester is now over and several goals have been accomplished.

1. Finished first POS committee meeting and did much better job than expected... was offered a spot teaching signal transduction to 1st year vet students.

2. Making headway with statistics for 1st paper.

3. Phone interview at Washington University STL this week

4. Duplex found for July in Ankeny for man and I

That's pretty dang good!!

Interesting story...

FORTUNE COOKIE: I went to the allergist yesterday and my only allergy is to rabbits. Isn't that nice? My doctor, besides wanting me to quit graduate school to stop the progression of the allergy, wants me to apply to med school. All day yesterday I was thinking about whether I really wanted to stay in research after I graduate or if I should study for my MCATs and become P's sugar momma. So... Parker and I went to the Mandarin for dinner last night and this is what my fortune cookie read: "You will prosper in the field of medical research". Whhhhaaaaattt? I don't have a sweet tooth but needless to say I ate that cookie.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Want to clone your cat?
Wow...Just kind of wanted to throw this out there... I think it is facinating and is opening doors to the future of scientific research both for the good and the potentially very bad.

The thing that kind of gets to me though is that most people who want to clone their cats want an exact replica of their current cat. While this cloned cat may appear to be an exact physical clone of their old cat there are infinite environmental reasons that your clone will not behaviorally resemble your old cat. Some of the people who have written in have desired cloning their cat because they had a 'unique' relationship with their cat that they haven't ever had with their other pets. Um...right...good luck replicating that relationship...ha.

The other big issue I have with cloning cats is that it is COMPLETELY excessive. Take it from Bob Baker, "Get your cats spayed or neutered". Think about it.... You don't get a perfect genetic clone on your first try...believe me it isn't that easy. The latest statistic I've heard is it takes 20 pregnancies to produce ONE perfect genetic clone. What happens to all these extra kittens that are born? The company here claims they find good homes for them at their (the companies) expense . I think I'll throw my bullshit card on this one. Do you know how many animals are put to sleep every year from animal shelters because they can't find a good home? Well neither do I but I am betting on quite a few. I'm not buying their explaination about decreasing this statistic either. Point being I think they're underestimating their home-finding ability for these animals. Granted they will probably have to keep some to be the seregate mother for these animals but even so, there are only so many litters that animal can have which leads me back to still needing to find a home for these animals.

And last but not least...I have to mention it...The slippery slope. Yes, it is possible that cloning animals is just the beginning and YOU'LL be next but I personally believe A Brave New World is far from a worry at this point.

Would a virtuous person with $32,000 laying around get their cat cloned? NO...think of the millions of way you could better put that money to use. But that's a completely different issue and who am I to say how people can spend their money...i could definitely come up with worse ways to spend it...

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

THE conversation

I found out yesterday that it is possible for me to graduate next May so that's what I'm now shooting for. It will be hard work but it is possible so I WILL do it. I've already begun looking for jobs with the assumption that my man would be following me to this perfect postdoc. I find out last night that when asked by his parents if we had discussed marriage, that he thinks we have to wait and see what happens AFTER I graduate. Um... decision was already made to move in together in a few months and NOW, NOW, he decides WE are contingent on 'things'. OKay... not to mention that we were almost signing a loan to buy a townhouse! After many tears and a very strange discussion about him not want to drop everything and follow me, it appears as though man wants to make the decision based on where he finds his perfect job and in a place he prefers. His career is a million times more versitile than mine and my perfect postdoc is not likely going to be in place he chooses.

When hanging up the phone last night he understood that the move wasn't ever intended to be a decision I made on my own and forced him to agree with. He agreed to let me apply for anything and then we would consider placement and what I liked the best later. However, my ever over-analyzing brain tells me this problem is more deeply rooted then 'him following me somewhere'. I've evidently been 'pressuring' him to get married when the only things I've ever said about it (besides our heart to hearts) was when I SUFFERED through the weekend with my engaged/married friends when I went home for my best friends bridal shower (wedding in which I am the maid of honor and also only unmarriend participant). But apparently his freaking out about it is different than mine...because mine is pressure.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Things that sucked today:

receiving angry text messages
Undesired poking from the OBGYN this morning
Reading even angrier and very hurtful blog
Crashed compy still MIA
Running out of superglue
Replacing crashed compy and realizing there were some un-backed up important things which are now lost FOREVER :(
Chinese food for dinner
Getting a flat tire
Watching male friend replace flat tire
Being back at work after having worked all day with minor break for doctor in morning
Squinting resulting from need to change contacts
Hy-vee bag tearing and broken spaghetti jar spilling it's contents EVERYWHERE.
Knowing I have to sleep sans man tonight... believe it or not out of all the bad things today entailed this is the worst one.

Good things that happened today:

Woke up with man
Remembered and wasn't late to OBGYN
Began working on equipment needed for next weeks surgery
Surprise visit from man before he went out of town for a couple days
Watched male friend replace tire (meaning I didn't have to do it)
New compy so I can finally get some work done again
spaghetti jar broke outside.
Hopefully relaxation for an hour or two before bed...

Bad day wins...positive attitude still present so bad day= not so bad.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Goals for this semester!!

1. Data analyized and group by middle of April and first draft finished by end of May

2. Set up POS committee meeting for end of this semester (??)

3. Discuss POS presentation with all professors before hand

4. 10 subjects for new experiment finished! N=5 currently

5. Up to date on articles

6. Find apartment in Ankeny

7. Read 2 lesiure books

8. Lose weight gained during winter by working out again

9. Professor chose for Preparing Future faculty

10. Resume sent to 10 potential professors for postdocs. N=2