Month: February 2016

So What Was In The Other Box?

I was so excited by my trophy, and Sigyn was so taken with the flower soap and the swan boat–and so busy sitting in my trophy– that we forgot that the package contents were supposed to be at least partially for the human female.

Ehehehehehe!  The gift sender apparently DOES read this blog and knows all about the human female’s truly dismal record with gloves.  There are three pair in here.

A pair of black, high-tech gloves.  I’ll take these–I can use them on the tablet when it’s cold out.

joolie15

The other black pair is too fru-fru for me, but Sigyn thinks wrist bows are a neat idea.

joolie14

Now. THIS pair I will let the human female keep. A) They look like work gloves, and Loki, God of Having Other People Do Things, does not need work gloves. B) They are girly. And C) They must be for the dim mortal, because they are clearly and helpfully…

joolie16

labeled.

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Wait–*More* Birthday Stuff?

I can’t believe it–another package has arrived for the human female, and I think it’s belated birthday goodies.  It’s a biggish box, so there could be anything in here!

Well, huh.  It’s a fabric bag with two cards, some medium boxes, a little box, and a tiny bag inside.  Odin’s eypatch!  Look, Sigyn!  One of the cards is addressed to me!

joolie1

Um, can you read it?

joolie2

As near as I can make out, it says, “Dear Mr. Loki,”  Well, that should be God Loki, or Supreme Ruler Loki, but all right.  “Congratulations!!  You have been chosen Best Blogger by the BBB.  No, not the Better Business Bureau, but the Best BBB, the Best Bloggers Bureau. Please enjoy the enclosed trophy (!) that proves you are the best blogger.  Please accept our congratulatory gifts of…”

Does that next bit say, “swan boat“?!    That makes no sense.  I’ll keep going.  Um…, “vile and re in frit lukht.”  Well, that makes even LESS sense.  I think the last part says, “Keep up the  great best ranch.  Best, BBB.”

This is confusing AND exciting!  Which of these packages has my trophy?  Maybe it’s this fancy one!

joolie3

joolie4

This does not look like a trophy.

joolie5

joolie6

Not amused.

What’s in the next box? (rustle, rustle, rustle)

joolie7

Well, I’ll be…  It is indeed… a swan boat ride.  I thought I’d read that wrong!  Sigyn is delighted.  We shall have to find some water and see how float-worthy it is.  Now what’s in the little  sparkly bag?

joolie8

A picnic basket!  Complete with a soda, fruit, and a nice bottle of Shiraz.  Between this and the boat, we have the makings of a very fine outing.

BUT WHERE IS MY TROPHY?  Maybe in this smaller box?  Yes, I do believe…

Here it is!  It is a nice big one!

joolie9

Perhaps a bit too big.

joolie11

Sigyn, I love you with all of my heart, but this trophy is mine.

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Rolypilldoodlepolysowdillo Bugs

If you want evidence that Midgard is sloppily run and in dire need of someone strong and organized to whip things into shape, there is this creature:

Pill-bug_doodle-bug_potato-bug

It is a small, armored invertebrate that has more names than Thor has boring war stories that begin, ” No lie–there I was…”  Roly-poly, pillbug, doodlebug, sowbug, armadillo beetle, etc.  Most of these names refer to the beast’s habit of rolling up into a tight little ball when danger threatens.  Most of these names are stupid, because it is not related to armadillos, it has nothing to do with mother pigs, it does not doodle, and it is most definitely NOT a bug.  It is an isopod, crustacean.  Unlike its lobstery cousins, however, it is not delightful when added to macaroni and cheese.  Do not ask me how I know.

The biology students have been asked to bring these creatures to class this week for use in next week’s lab.  The idea is to set up some simple experiments about habitat preference, offering the creatures choices between different temperatures, moisture levels, pH ranges, foodstuffs, and habitat substrates.  I am all for Science, so Sigyn and I are examining the set-up.

The Prep Staff have created a terrarium in which to house the pillrolydoodles until class ti–   Sigyn, how—?

pillbugs-tank

Sigh.  Hang on, I’ll get you out.  But first–do you prefer the dry leaf litter or the moist bark chips?  Did you sample the bits of raw potato?

One hundred of these sowdillopillpolys will be tagged with colored nail polish and released into the terrarium, twenty five of each color in each of the four habitat zones.  At the end of the experiment, the students will tally up the creatures and see if they demonstrated any habitat preferences.

First, we have to round up a hundred armadoodlepolybugs.

pillbugs-roundup

This is not as easy as you might think.  They are surprisingly quick and nimble, quite difficult to catch, even in a round container.  Hold STILL, you worthless, spineless, detritivores!

Next we have to mark them, which I am letting the human female do.  This is a good color.  Use this.

pillbugs-green

Ugh!  You can see by all the daubs and splattles that she made rather a poor job of it.  Yes, it is tricky painting moving targets who evince a Strong Aversion to being goopellated, but a left-handed baboon with the palsy could have done a neater job.  Let’s see if she does any better with the yellow…

pillbugs-yellow

Um, that would be a “No.”  And I think she drowned a couple in that screaming yellow lacquer.

In the end, we have enough decorated isodoodledillos and into the terrarium they go.  It’s all very Scientific, with Controls and Hypotheses and Null Hypotheses and Data Points.  My hypothesis is that, since I had a little chat with the bugbeetlepills about the dangers of a vegan diet, when it comes time to sift through the bark and gravel and soil, the students will find that half of the armarolysowpods have eaten the other half.

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More Doodles (Mostly Mine This Time)

Great Frigga’s hairpins–I found another one!

doodle2

Someone please get the human female some help.

But you know–she may have something with this doodling of hers.  She has been especially annoying lately, and I have decided to channel some of my vexation into drawing, rather than punitive magic.  While I draw, I think loving little thoughts.

Here are some little vignettes of my hopes and dreams for her.

doodle5

doodle6

doodle7

doodle8

Oh, and the cat has been ticking me off, too.

doodle9

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RTC-FRTC

See what I did there?  (Try saying it out loud.)  Whatever.  There is a fair amount of “art” here in the MSC–this is where we’ve come to look at glass paperweights and cameo glass and other vitreous doo-dads.  There are also some odd sculptures and quite a few paintings.

Sigyn is admiring a rather nice painting of some buildings in various stages of disrepair.

painting

The human female has opined that it is a Canaletto and has begun to blather about famous landscape paintings and What I Saw In London, and so on.

Do you know what?  I do not care.  I do not care where she has been or what she has seen, and the last laugh is on her, because…

…this is not a painting.

mosaic

Look, Sigyn!  It is made of tiny, tiny pieces of glass.  Spun enamel, the card says.  How interesting!  Would you like to have your portrait made in this fashion?  You would be beautiful no matter the medium employed.

That picture was up on the second floor.  Now were are back downstairs again, taking a little rest on a bench here.  Sigyn is delighted with the upholstery.

ponybench

Yes, my love the black and white spots are quite attractive, and the shaggy surface is indeed unlike the sofa back home.

Poor dear.  I haven’t the heart to tell her that it’s pony hide

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Interesting, But I Still Won’t Take My Hat Off

Sigyn and I have been to the Memorial Student Center on campus before, but there is always something we have missed.  It’s a pleasant day out, so we have ambled over to see what’s what.

There is a man out front speaking at great length and volume on some religious subject.  Hmm.  If this is a Free Speech area which one can reserve, perhaps I should secure the spot several times per week and present my Manifesto for world domination.  If I hand out cookies, I should draw quite a crowd.  That usually works with mortals–sucker them in with sugar, then pitch to them while they’re in a carbohydrate coma.

The largest room downstairs in the MSC (which I think should stand for My Splendid Conquest) is the Flag room, where I was once admonished to remove my glorious helm.  No one today has dared to make the same request of me. No, Sigyn and I are free to look around.

flagroom

She likes to watch the students.  I am imagining all of the banners replaced with my own colors.  And the large globe (which doesn’t actually feature the Midgardian continents) will have to be swapped for one that shows the progress and extent of my empire.

Sigyn is intrigued by a large cabinet full of decorative table ceramics.

china-cabinet

I thought that was a trifling and useless collection, until I realized that each plate depicts a battle scene from the history of this realm.  I shall have to ascertain whether the potter in Staffordshire is still in the business of creating celebratory transferware.  If so, I shall commission a service for twenty commemorating my glorious conquest.  Black and green, of course.  None of this blue and red stuff.  (Sorry, Sigyn.  Red is your thing, not mine.)

There is music coming from one corner of this room.  A large keyboard instrument has been placed there, and anyone who likes can drop by and practice or perform.  The  young man making melodies today is favoring us with a mixture of movie themes and the University’s fight song and marching band tunes.

piano

I think I will commission a grand opera lauding my exploits.  Sigyn, you discuss it with this young man while I find someplace very safe to put his large gold class ring which he has so carelessly set aside…

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D is for Doodle, and also Disturbing

Ugh, meetings.  The human female has to attend several each week.  During them, her attention inevitably wanders like a lobotomized sheep in a meadow full of tasty buttercups. To help keep her mind in the present, she has become an inveterate doodler, and the margins of all her notes are defaced with inky scribblings.  Usually, she draws cats and horses and flowers and bugs and pieces of cake.  Lots of cake.

Lately, however, her artwork has taken on a more sinister tone.  I mean look at this!

doodle1

By Heimdall’s golden contacts, what IS that thing?  And it’s not alone–she’s drawn a whole school of fangy nightmare eels.

And what about this?!

doodle4

A cat-elope?  A tiger-gnu in footy pajamas?  I can’t even…  What goes on in her head?

Oh look–this one has a disturbing little caption:

doodle3

Not content with one anxious, maladjusted feline, she has covered half a page with them!

Human male, I suspect your female has problems.  I think counseling is in order.

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Order, Order!

I know that I updated you on my mischief just yesterday, but it wasn’t an exhaustive recounting of my exploits.  Far from it!   The human female has had so many Purchasing Woes that they deserve their very own post!

If her coworkers tell her what they need, the human female can usually obtain it.  Take the other day, for example.  Coworker #1 said that they urgently need TEN THOUSAND of the machine-graded exam forms the freshman biology students use.  Cue multiple phone calls and e-mails to determine if the vendor is in the new system.  Well, look at that! They are!  But with a different address! More email!  More phone calls! Where, oh where should this excruciatingly vital order go?!  I waited until the human female had worked herself into a flapping froth to let coworker #2 tell her that there’s no pressing need for the forms.

I mean it–the new purchasing program never stops being funny!  The human female accidentally categorized a requisition as open market rather than direct open market, and because there’s no way to change it, she had to have someone higher up the food chain CANCEL the first one and then she got to do it all over again.

It’s not just the human female who struggles beneath the heavy burden of the twisty workings of BAMN, either.  Not only does the Vendor Who’s Responsible not have a functional punch-out catalog system yet, the poor University account rep has to hand-enter every single item on every order sent by BAMN into its own order fulfillment system, because the two programs will not talk to one another. Ehehehehe! I am so evil.

Even when the orders go through, get approved, go back to her, get sent, are retrieved by the vendor, and are filled and mailed out, things can still go wrong.  Why, just the other day, a whole shipment of Equisetum plants from the Purveyor of Squiggly Things (they also sell plants) arrived right on time.  Super, right?  Wrong!  In unpacking the plants, it became evident that they were just pots of rootless cuttings, no doubt grabbed from the wrong end of a greenhouse bench.  Oh, and the vendor had been doing so well.

But do you know what my FAVORITE part of all this ordering business is?  It’s the bit where the human female has to supply a commodity code for each and every little thing she orders.  It’s become almost a game.   She plugs an item into the search box, and maybe it comes up.  Maybe it doesn’t.  Maybe what the program urps up as possible matches is nothing short of poetry.

Have a look.  Here’s a screen-cap of the human female looking for those scanner forms:

orderscannerforms

Oooookay.   Next, looking for some microbes turned up decorations, cards, and party supplies.  (What kind of parties do these programmers GO to?!)

Looking for live hydras. Not to be confused with Hydra, which no one wants. (I don’t want to know what she plans to do with these tiny Cnidarians.  Possibly they are snacks.)

bam-hydra

Okay, the “hydraulic” items make sense, because they have “hydra-” in them, but cardiovascular drugs?  Cement?  Really, I just told the program to pull things at random and it does a beautiful job.

Searching for live hermit crabs?

bam-crab

I don’t know about you, but I always get confused between dry formulation herbicides and shell-swapping crustaceans.

Then there’s her search for a culture of the Chitrid fungus Allomyces:

orderfungi

I also have a growing collection of secret computer-cam photos of her face as she is greeted by each new twisted permutation of this program.  Sometimes, when I’m feeling low, I take them out and spread them out and look at them and do a little evil gloating.

B. A. M. N.  It never ceases to me amaze  me how my four little letters can cripple a whole University System.  If I can get the U.S.’s General Accounting Office and the various branches of the military to use this procurement software, it won’t matter who wins the elections in the fall, because the country will be paralyzed and looking to anyone to save it.  This whole country will fall into my outstretched hand like an overripe plum.  Today, crafter of inane search results.  Tomorrow, Ruler of Midgard!

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