I have to use AOL to access Open Diary from home and my connection is very painfully slow and I can’t seem to stay logged in long enough to update anymore. I’m not about to return to handcoding so I’m going to have to try to remember to update between classes while I’m at school.

I’m sharing an office with a nuclear physics PhD candidate and she’s really nice but she comes in and while she’s thinking, she stares intensely in my direction when I’m writing and mumbles under her breath in Chinese, which I find slightly stifling, creatively speaking.

If things go dark here for a while, don’t write me off. I’ll be back.

I’m trying to coax my Chinese office-mates to go to the roof of one of the buildings on campus to watch the fireworks, but I’m afraid that the concept of the 4th of July is a little perplexing to them.

They’re also freaked out by the concept of hot-dogs because they don’t like not knowing what’s inside – this is fascinating to me since we recently had a fracas wherein one of my officemates tried to explain to an American colleague that her dog was a viable source of protein and her emotional attachment to the pooch was peculiar. My officemate was a vegetarian until she moved to the U.S., so there’s a whole lot more layers of cross-cultural wackiness to that conversation than I can ever hope to convey.

Since I usually end up playing referee, some days I find school more fun than others.

I know you’re all sick and tired of hearing about grad school, but I had an epiphany I just had to share.

To briefly recap: my secondary speciality is Communications. My advisor convinced me that taking the fiction screenwriting class would be useful to me in my non-fiction writing.

My epiphany isn’t that he’s right, although he probably is.

My epiphany is that it draws much less attention when you make phonecalls for research purposes if you identify yourself as a fiction writer than if you call and say you’re just doing research.

I hope so, anyway, because I imagine that otherwise calls about whether, hypothetically speaking, a pet mummifyer could also mummify a person and then disguise the remains to look like a large dog would attract much less attention from, oh say, law enforcement, if the person was just doing research for a movie.

That’s what I’m hoping, anyway.

And now, my friends, it’s time to talk about my bowels.

Only kidding.

The kind of fiber I need isn’t found in plants. I guess it could be, but the kind of fiber I’m lacking comes from sheepies. Last year, World Renowned Rheumatologist forbade me to ever knit or crochet again because he believed it would hasten the demise of my joints.

The orthopedists I consulted all concurred.

They didn’t so much concur as shrug their shoulders, say they probably agreed, and then tried to show me more pictures of themselves various Redskins. I’m pretty sure every Orthopod in town is a “team doctor” for the Redskins. Are all towns with NFL franchises like this? My poor Tampa Bay Bucs probably don’t have doctors clamoring to claim them as their own. Someday, boys and girls, someday….

But where was I?

Fiber.

Right.

So sometimes I crochet little gifts for people, but I put away my (read: my grandmother’s) needles a few years ago after finishing a lap-blanket for my mom. I have this delusion that someday I’ll learn how to spin yarn. That doesn’t look like it’s very hard on the joints. In fact, it looks really fucking cool. And watching a spinning wheel spin is probably way more fun than watching the bureaucracy of Grad school spin around.

But again, I digress.

Go into a yarn store some time and ask if they know where you can learn how to spin. I dare you. I doubledog dare you.

I’d say that it gets so quiet you can hear crickets chirping, but that would be wrong. It gets really quiet for a minute and then you can’t hear the crickets chirping because everyone is laughing at you, including the crickets, who are rolling around on the floor gasping for breath and pounding all of their little hairy limbs on the floor as they cackle at you.

The boss and I sneak up to this fair called the Maryland Sheep and Wool festival almost every year. I was sick in 96 and we missed it this year. Maybe next year.