My iPod works again! Yay! I ended up having to buy a new Firewire card (just as I figured) but I managed to talk my father into springing for it--it was only 40 bucks but still, I thought that was awfully nice of him to do that. Although I do have a feeling I'll probably have to help him with some project around either his or my house to work off the 40 dollars.
So all is well with the world again.