Month: February 2015

A new New Year

It has come to my attention that some cultures of Midgard utilize a lunar calendar and reckon this as the first day of the new year. Different animals have been carefully chosen to represent each of the years in the twelve year cycle. This year is the Year of the Sheep or Ram.

Sigyn is celebrating by making friends with this fluffy sheep. It is an odd pale yellow color and has a strange, rattling baa and beady little eyes, but she loves it.


Animals dote on Sigyn and Sigyn will ride anything.


This year is also known as the Year of the Goat. I think that is a better name and most auspicious for me! Note the glorious sweeping horns, if you will. I can identify with this magnificent animal. (Except perhaps for the neck ribbons, which should be black and green.) Forgive me, Sigyn, but the Goat is a much nobler beast.


All honor to the hoofstock of your choice, and 新年快樂 !

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Light ’em up

After yesterday’s diary post about cake and kings and sacrificial, inedible babies, the human female sat me down and gave me some long-winded lecture about being sensitive to the religious beliefs of others and how I might try to be helpful rather than scoffing. There was probably more than that, but to be honest, I stopped listening about halfway through. Blah, blah, blah.

She explained some more about what’s going on today. Turns out it’s not about me, which is probably just as well. (I didn’t want an inedible-baby-flavored cake with purple sugar anyway.)

Today’s activities involve burning palm trees so that the resultant ashes can be daubed on people.

Botanical pyromania! Sounds like fun! In the spirit of ecumenical cooperation, I’d love to help. Where could I find…? Well, well, well. Now isn’t that lucky? Look at what’s part of the set-up for some of the labs at the human female’s workplace this week! And as it happens, I am well-prepared for just such an eventuality…


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Bon voyage! (A lesson in villainy)

In villainy, as in comedy, timing is everything. It’s crucial to know when a joke has been played out, when it’s time to move on to the next thing.

I have, therefore, waved my powerful hand and allowed the return tags for the apothecary bottles to finally arrive in the human female’s in-box.


Truth be told, I shall miss them a bit. I’ve had such fun with them. I am contenting myself by thinking of the enjoyment I will have messing with the refund process once they reach their destination–which is (get this!) a town only about 100 miles away. The human female could have driven them there herself some morning and been back in time for lunch.

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A cake just for me

Some of the Midgardians are gearing up for something religious, but I’m not sure I understand it completely. Something about forty days and forty nights and fasting and sacrifices and repentance. They plan to start the observance off by feasting and partying and perpetrating misdemeanors so that they have something of which to repent… Sounds like my kind of shindig.

Every Midgardian holiday seems to have its own suite of culinary peculiarities, and this one’s no exception. The human female has been going on and on about King Cake for a week now, and she has located one in the market. Would you look at this handsome thing!

And the cake looks good, too. >|; ]


It is indeed a cake fit for a king. You know what? I think it must have been made in my honor! Maybe this holiday is all about ME! My fame has spread and the populace is on the very brink of rising up en masse and declaring me god and/or king! It is about time! I adore feasting and sacrifices– as long as I’m the one doing the feasting and everyone else is doing the sacrificing. And “Mardi Gras” must mean “everybody kneel” in one of the local dialects. Well done!

However, they do need to make more of an effort to get the colors right. I approve of the green and the gold, but why did they add all the purple? I don’t “do” purple.

Mmmm. Caaaake. I wonder what it tastes like…


Apple! Apples are good. I like apples. But what’s this about an inedible baby inside? I don’t think I like the sound of that. I can be ruthless, but I have yet to stoop to the slaughter of infants and their inclusion in any sort of patisserie.

Maybe I don’t want this holiday…

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Lessons in Mischief: A word in the right ear

Villainy is a fine art. A delicate instrument, not a blunt object. Never shout when a whisper will do.

Case in point: Many of the human female’s teaching labs feature a small aquarium housing fish and a number of interesting/ potentially edible/ possibly toxic invertebrates.

This semester, one of the lab courses was moved to a new (ish) room in a different building, so the human and her staff moved the fish tank to the new room.

Now, I could have tinkered with the plumbing or the electricity for the pump and filter–or the life forms themselves–but no! Not when I could let forces already in play do my dirty work and wreak their own havoc. (Besides, we’ve already had a lot of plumbing pranks. I like to diversify.)

Let’s just say that somehow the Animal Use Committee heard about the simple move and drew itself up to its full regulatory height and deemed the move a Setup of a New Tank and demanded an inspection, requiring an overhaul of the workgroup’s entire live animal permit. No, the fact that this tank had been set up every year in the old room did not count. No, no animals could be placed in it until it had been inspected in its new room. No, a dry set-up is not good enough; the tank must be running, just uninhabited.

Which is why Sigyn and I find ourselves peering through a running but empty tank.


All is on hold until The Inspection.

<Later> Ehehehehehe! Just to mess with the human female a little bit more, I suggested to the Animal Use Committee that they did not, in fact, need to come back out for an inspection, thus negating at least six memos, four emails, and three phone calls. Verdict overthrown! Green light for fish! Confusion reigns.

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p.s.  The apothecary bottles are STILL HERE.

Is it a treat with a toy surprise or a toy with a tasty delivery system?

The human female, using a logic that is logical only to her, is preparing for Lent and getting rid of all the fattening sweets in the house… by eating them.

Marzipan, “that heavenly almondy treat,” is a particular favorite. Apparently it is like modeling clay and can be formed into any shape. She has a few fruit-shaped pieces left from Yule. I’d like it on the record that she did NOT share any with me.

Originally, there were some pieces shaped like strawberries, and those come with little plastic leaf-stem pieces (which she is just barely smart enough not to eat.)


They make fine spinning tops. Sadly, the marzipan peaches, oranges, and whatever-the-greeny-yellow-things-are do not have them.

So, neener neener neener, human female, to Hel with all of your table manners rules. We are TOO going to play with food!

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A Midgardian custom of which I approve

Last year, my celebration of the Midgardian feast of love and romance did not go very well. I swore never to participate again. This year–Oh, this year I am celebrating with my beloved Sigyn and I couldn’t be happier.

It is customary to dine out with one’s partner on this day, so I have brought Sigyn to one of the town’s nicest restaurants. We had a nice ride over here. (I like it when Sigyn rides pillion–it’s a ride with a built-in hug!) There was rather a wait to be seated, but a well-placed glower convinced the hostess to move us to the front of the line. (I told her Sleipnir was a service animal.) Now we are perusing the menu.


I shall order the Straw and Hay for Sleipnir (without the prosciutto.) Sigyn, of course, zeroed in on the Red Fish. I think I will try the Poblano Mac and Cheese, because I am given to understand that, like a certain god I know, poblano peppers are green and spicy.

While we wait for our meal, we can practice our rock-climbing skills on the brickwork…


…and play hide-and-seek with the tableware. Sigyn, I don’t think the water carafe is as opaque as you think it is.


Nor is the candle holder.


Dearest, come out of there. The waiter wants to light the candle.


This is so romantic. The food is delicious, and the company couldn’t be more charming. Even Sleipnir is behaving beautifully.

There is always room for gelato!


Happy Valentine’s Day, my love!

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Third time’s the charm

Today is Friday the 13th, a day the Midgardians seem to regard as unlucky.

So as not to leave them disappointed when catastrophes do not occur and they have nothing of which to complain (complaining is their favorite pastime), I have arranged for…

…wait for it…

…can you guess?

….the lab sink is gushing again and can’t be turned off! Ehehehehehehe!

No picture, because you know by now what that much wasted water looks like.

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p.s.  the apothecary bottles are STILL HERE

The Human Female is Aging

The human female is aging. For some reason, she has acquired gray hairs more and more quickly since about December of 2013. At this rate, merchants will start offering her the Senior Discount any day now.

Sigyn has insisted that we mark her birthday with a small gift. I suggested something lovingly made with toothpicks and the contents of the dryer’s lint screen, but Sigyn would have none of it. Instead, she has found this unique deck of playing cards. I must admit that the human female, huge plant nerd that she is, will probably like them.


To be honest, I think Sigyn is hoping the human female will play cards with her, just so she can look at all the flowers. Sigyn likes the eight of hearts best because, “The flowers have smiley faces.”


I like these two. Because reasons.


Sigyn thinks we should offer to play a game with the Birthday Crone. (“Girl” in nowise applies.) I concur, and, in keeping with the years of decrepitude she has attained, I have made everything ready for a game of



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p.s.  The apothecary bottles are STILL HERE

A February Walk, Part II: In which I am AVENGED

Seriously, why would the human female want to take stupid holly photos when we can do really interesting things like hunt for crawly things under loose bark on dead trees?


I mean, isn’t she even a teensy bit curious as to what made these holes? And if anything is still in them?


I think maybe I am just not interested in the same sort of nature that Sigyn and the human female are. However, I am not a complete botanical philistine–there are plants I like very much. Take this one, for example.


It is just *loaded* with all of these delightfully wicked burrs. And their little hooked spines are quite reminiscent of my glorious helmet. The human female says that children call them "porcupine eggs." I have no idea what a porcupine is, but I’d like to see her sit on one of these things for a while and try to hatch it.

Or I could just, you know, fling a good handful at her sweater…


Once she unsticks her elbow from her side and her braid from her sweater and teases out the five on her front, I bet she decides that it’s time to go home!

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p.s.  The apothecary bottles are still here.