Month: May 2017

Mischief Update—Oh, So Busy!

I know that all the recent pictures of house-clutter make it seem as if I’m slacking, but nothing could be further from the truth.  I have been plenty busy, and the mischief level around here is such that the human female daily threatens me with a kiddie pool full of acetone.   Here is a recap of my recent misdemeanors.

It is tax evaluation statement time.  The humans have just received a document stating that the value of their dwelling has gone down, which would be great, tax-wise, if I hadn’t suggested to the local taxing authority that the rate should go up.

BAMN, my greatest weapon to date against the human female’s sanity, may be a thing of the past, but I am still finding ways to make the human female’s purchasing job more fun.  (For ME.)  Several months ago now, she sent several of the laboratory’s automatic pipettors for recalibration.  The work was done, and she received a bill.  She received the bill late because the Tech responsible for getting it to her misplaced it for a good few weeks.  The female hastened to pay it, but the DBC  (Departmental Bean-Counters) refused to pay it, because it did not specifically say “Invoice.”  Never mind that she could swear on her miserable life that the work was performed.  The DBC told her to pay with the workgroup credit card, which she did.  Fast forward to recently, when she received a communication from the pipette-fixing people, informing her that her bill was unpaid due to a problem with the card.  She spent a merry half-hour on the phone, during which time it was determined that someone on their end had mis-recorded the credit card’s expiry date.  (Jotun static does wonders for cell phone calls…)

No longer having BAMN also doesn’t prevent vendor-side amusements for me.  The human female recently received two “Your items have just shipped” emails from two different vendors (Including the Vendor Who’s Responsible), later in the day on which the goods had already arrived.   The next day, I saw to it that she received an email saying that she had to fill out a new-asset form for the computer that she had ordered.  Except she’s not James Hutchins, she didn’t order a computer, and that wasn’t her PO.  She had fun trying to disassociate herself from that purchase, because it is Inventory Time, and someone is going to be looking for that laptop.

Then the Purveyor of Dead Things shipped the order of sharks early.  The labels on the boxes delivered did NOT match what the human female ordered, which was a specific mix of sexes and pregnant/not pregnant.  She and one of her staff opened each of the boxes to discover that the pregnant sharks were in fact included, but that the male:female ration of the non-preggers sharks did not match her order.  Someone in the PODT’s shipping department decided that 8 females and 14 males was the same as 10 females and 12 males.  Twenty-two chondrichthyous corpses is twenty-two chondrichthyous corpses, right?  When she called to bellow at them, they explained they’d sent all the females they had.  If they had heeded the note attached to the order which said that this shipment could be held for the larger Dead Cat Ballet which occurs every August, they’d have been able to amass the proper number of sharkettes.  Oh, and while she was counting, I saw to it that one of the bags leaked all over, so she came away, wet and fishy to the elbow.  That’s worth two points, right there.

The human female is suffering from PPP Syndrome–plethora of preserved piglets.  Every semester, the students generate a number of fetal pig cadavers that have been fully digested, and these all have to go somewhere.  One cannot put that many pounds of latex-injected porkers into the dumpster, so they must be incinerated.  A call to the Vet School, which has an incinerator and will eighty-six the piggies for a fee, turns up the fact that the Vet School is selling their incinerator to the University’s poultry farm.  Now the sale is not final, so they still HAVE the incinerator, but they’re unwilling to use it because they already have a big pile of ashes they need to get rid of from prior conflagrations and they want to get out of the incinerating business.  The human female called several times, and each time, the person on the other end assured her they would find out from the poultry farm when they’d start taking piglets for incineration, but no info was forthcoming.  She then tried calling the poultry farm, and the person there said they’d have someone call her right back the next day.  That was week before last.  The piglets remain uncombusted.  If only this sort of run-around counted as physical exercise!

Speaking of the Vet School, they have found a way to further traumatize the humans on the loss of their cat.  Despite the original bill for the feline’s treatment having been paid in full and even showing a credit, the Vet School sent a second bill, referencing a different account number, and showing an additional charge.  A call to the Vet School turned up the fact that the original case had been put under the humans’ friend’s account, since he was the one who took the cat to the vet since he was feeding her that day.  The new bill represented their account, and the fee was for for the disposal of the  defunct pussy’s remains.  What a cheery reminder.

In other news, the leaky ceiling in the Prep Room has been fixed, one month and one week from the time the human female filed the work request.  But nature abhors a dry ceiling as much as a vacuum, so when there was a terrific rainstorm last weekend, I arranged for quite a bit of said rain to enter the human male’s workspace.  Three ceiling tiles came completely down in the computer server room, simply drenching a whole rack of spare system components.  The water eventually found its way into all five floors of the building, necessitating taking apart a large number of things so they could be spread out to dry.  The human male was NOT amused, especially since this event meant the humans had to race back from out of town to deal with it.  They’re always complaining that they want rain.  I wish they’d make up their minds, the hypocrites.

I now have fewer people to annoy in the human female’s work group.  Her Prep Staff is shrinking.  They say are leaving to further their education or careers, but we all know they’re just trying to get away from her.  She has a job posting up, for a Biology Lab Technician, and has so far received applications from a two computer specialists, a psychologist, a salesman, a grandmother, a recent biology grad with not a single day of work experience anywhere, a foreign national whose paperwork would take months, and someone who might be qualified but who attached the cover letter for an application to a different posting.  Still another attached two copies of the resume and no letter at all.

All this stress is playing havoc with her sleep and her waistline.  So much so that yesterday she purchased a larger pair of jeans.  Though they were extensively pre-washed, this morning they fit worse than her old jeans.  Meanwhile, people keep bringing her cookies. 

She was looking forward to a concert in November, by two of her favorite musicians. She’s going to have to look forward a bit more, though, because the concert’s been postponed from November until January of NEXT YEAR.

There is a new mewling infant in the family, this one a new grandnephew.  The human female has a quilt all planned out—has had it planned out for months now.  She just can’t find her sketch.  (Cue innocent whistling.)

That’s not all she’s missing.  Last month, she signed herself and the human male up for some Dotage Insurance.  Since she’s becoming more decrepit by the day, it seemed like a good idea.)  There was Paperwork Aplenty, but the new policy documents were taking forever to arrive.  She called the agent to gripe ask after them, and as soon as she did, the human male said, “Oh, you mean these?”  they had (wait for it…) BEEN BURIED IN THE DINING ROOM TABLE CLUTTER!

And finally, the human female has discovered that her little silver car (she still misses the smashed blue one and has yet to get the hang of parking this one) is missing a piece.  It’s true!  The bit that is supposed to cover the cargo space when the hatch is closed is absent.  The manufacturer lists it as an “accessory,” so maybe it was never there.  Still, its lack is a frequent annoyance, which is all I care about.

I’m a bit out of practice scoring my mischief, but I thinks this has to rate a solid NINE

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Not So Much Need For A Bulldozer– Mine, Now

The humans have finally finished with their spring cleaning, now that summer is nearly upon us.

Great Frigga’s corset!  Look at this!  Who knew there was MONEY under all that paper, ink, and crumbs on the dining room table?

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Do you recognize these coins, my beloved? They are not from this realm.  No, I believe they pertain to the place where we vacationed last year.  See?  There is that lady on yours.  She had her face on everything over there.   (Can you believe it has been a whole year already? Time flies when you are causing mischief.)

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Wait.  Why is yours all shiny and pretty and mine all black and corroded?

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Oh, I see what it is now.  It is a whole series of coins, depicting a succession of monarchs, from Old Lady With a Funny Hat through Impressive Mustaches and Facing the Wrong Way, all the way to Lady Whose Reign is Nearly as Long as Odin’s.

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I’ll be back in a bit, Sigyn.   I’m just off to check some numismatic websites to see if Old Lady in a Funny Hat is worth anything…

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I’m Not Gone

I…I’ve had to lay low for a couple of days.  The humans, emboldened and encouraged by their assault on the clutter in the dining room, went on a house-cleaning binge.  It was either hide or get pressed into service. Sigyn was helping them cheerfully (“cheerfully” is how she does everything, to be honest), so I had to stick close and make sure she was all right, but I had to keep out of sight.  I couldn’t get to the computer unnoticed.

And I have no doubt it’ll be all pig-pennish again very soon.  Even if it isn’t, it will be, if you get my drift.

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What We Need Here Is a Bulldozer, Part IV: But Wait! There’s More!

So the humans have made a little effort to shovel off the table.  It is now possible, at least, to see the table.   There is still some clutter left, however.

This small pamphlet was made by the human female.  Sigyn is quite fond of scones and is very enthusiastic.  I shall reserve judgement until I ascertain whether those wavy lines emanating from said scones represent fragrant steam or whiffs of putrefaction.

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Rum-raisin scones?  Intriguing, but why not use the real thing?

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You, madam, are a sissy.

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There is plenty of junk left in the rest of the room.   Note this beverage bottle:

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Neither of the humans drinks this concoction.  None of their frequent guests drink this concoction.  Note how dusty and collapsed the bottle is!  I’d claim credit for hiding it from view, but I think this predates my arrival on Midgard.  This is left from a six-pack they purchased for some visitor years and years and years ago.   Unbelievable.  No! Wait! Stop!  Do NOT just wash it off and put it back.  Throw the damned thing out, already.

All right, mortals, what about this?  “E” for “Explain.”  “E” for “egregious hoarding.”  “E” for “I can’t bEliEvE thEy kEpt this!”

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The human female says the male picked this up off the floor of the garage where her car was towed after it was totaled.  That’s right.  Blame someone else.

What have you got there, Sigyn?  If I had to guess, I’d say it is the cap off a tube of caulk—

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But I could be wrong.

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What We Need Here Is a Bulldozer, Part III: Feeble Attempts at Self-Improvement

Amidst the flotsam and jetsam that has fetched up on the dining room table, one can discern feeble attempts at self-improvement.  The female has been reading this spiritual memoir.

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Let us hope that the intercession of this gaggle of holy people wearing nighties is efficacious.  She will surely never achieve a heavenly resting place upon her own merits.

I spy:  the remains of an Asian noodle soup lunch, one wristwatch, scissors, a box of facial tissues, several bills, some loose change, an iPad, and a plethora of fountain pen ink samples.

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Look, Sigyn, most of these have sparkly particles in them!  Let me tell you, that is the only sparkle the human female’s prose would EVER have.  Let’s have some fun and loosen all the labels…

What have you got there?  Ah, a set of tiny screwdrivers, essential for fixing things around here, because both humans have a screw loose.

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Which reminds me, it is time to loosen the knobs on the human female’s antique dresser again.

I deduce that, in an effort to become a smaller version of herself, the human female has had a simple carton of yogurt for lunch.

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She wonders why “all the good flavors” seem to have nasty-tasting sucralose, stevia, aspartame, or other non-sugar sweeteners.  It has never occurred to her to check my holdings in Pfizer, Heartland Food Products Group, Cargill, and Coca-Cola.

Oh, what’s this?  An attempt to do a bit of cleaning?

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I think I will let her finish and put the glass cleaner away and feel proud of herself before letting her notice all the smudges and crumbs I have put on the underside of the tabletop glass.

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What We Need Here Is a Bulldozer, Part II: Seasonal Miscellany

Let us continue our investigation into the natural history of the humans, as we delve further into their clutter-nest-building activities upon the dining room table.

Again, I ask you:  How many writing implements can one actually use?  And this assemblage does not include the three to five pens the male usually has in his pocket!

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(Note the milk-carton spot on the glass tabletop.  I’m surrounded by slobs!)

You might assume, with an assortment of scribing instruments such as this, that they were producing reams and reams of research, journal entries of historical significance, eloquent letters to loved ones, sketches of poignant beauty, and erudite and uplifting homilies.

You would be wrong.  Around here, it is all shopping lists and doodling, with the occasional foray into bill-paying or word-puzzle doing.  You can be sure that, with a little help from me, pocket clips will snap off, erasers will dry out, leads will jam in mechanical pencils, and refills will become unavailable for favorite brands.

A friend at work shared some garden roses with the human female.  You can see that they are ashamed to be here.

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More advertisements.  This one, from a purveyor of lingerie and swimwear, came with a sheet of little stickers.  They’re on stiffish rather than flexible paper, which makes them easy to handle.  Sigyn thinks the pineapple is cute.  (At least it’s not pink.)

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Augh!  Get it off!  Get it off!

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Though it does concisely express my level of approval for the human female’s housekeeping skills.

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What We Need Here Is a Bulldozer, Part I: On Any Flat Surface

Midgard is home to a number of strange beasts.  In the jungles of the realm of Asia dwells an arboreal beast known as a binturong.  These are binturongs:

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Basically, they are like walking doormats, with long, grabby tails that drag behind them like bags of dirty laundry.  Binturongs may, with some difficulty, be kept as pets.   One would do well to remember, however, that even though they have abundant whiskers, “darling” little ears (according to Sigyn), and a natural scent that is said to be like that of popcorn, they habitually defecate exclusively on flat surfaces.

I submit to you that the humans are binturongs that have learned to walk upright because by Idunn’s little green apples they leave crap on every flat surface in the house. I am not in jest.  Let us examine some of the effluvia present on the dining room table today.

This is like some freakish game of “I spy.”  Let’s see:  soda bottle, flyer for a restaurant that will chicken-fry pretty much anything, smeary eyeglasses, some of the human female’s dry-eye drops, a bottle cap, and three pinch clips, two of which I know for a fact were handouts at a science product show.

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I spy:  the corner of a clipboard, two pens, a pencil, a hair elastic, and a Grand Opening announcement for a veterinary hospital whose address was incorrectly listed.

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You will note that the human female felt compelled to point out the error (there is no such street as ‘Arlington’ in this town) in permanent marker, even though no one at the pet hospital or the printer of the advertisement can see her scribbling.

Looking at the rest of this mess, I’d say the advertising circulars almost deserve a post all to themselves.  Did you see this page, Sigyn?  One can purchase personalized checks.  You’d like the ones with butterflies, wouldn’t you?

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Augh!  Checks with my “brother” and his stupid friends!  And lightning checks, also for Thor!  Grrrr. Why are there no checks with images pertinent to MY interests?

Because the humans like to eat (or in the female’s case, eat and eat and eat), the grocery advertisements can usually be found among the detritus on the table.  Sigyn is pleased to learn that grapes are coming into season and may be had cheaply.  I approve of their color.

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Along with the shopping ads are loose coupons.  The humans are famous for hoarding coupons as if they were gold ingots– and then forgetting to use them before they expire.

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The human female is very good at gobbling up this particular new brand of bacteria-laden fermented milk product.  I have tasted it and I concur.  Quite nice, and it comes in unusual flavors such as strawberry-rhubarb and pumpkin.  The fact that it is full-fat and has more than twice the calories as all the other brands might have something to do with her burgeoning waistline, but even she would find it difficult to eat five at once.

Actually that coupon is part of a little game I’ve devised for her.  I have hacked the store’s coupon-printer so that it prints what I tell it.  I started with “buy one, get a coupon worth fifty cents on your next purchase of two.”  Then it was “buy two, get a coupon for one dollar off on your next purchase of four,” and so on, as you can see.  Every time she takes the deal, I up the ante.  I’m trying to see how many I can get her to buy at once, with the aim of filling the entire refrigerator with yogurt.  But this coupon languished under some other papers and has long since expired, so I’ll have to make sure she gets it again.  Or maybe I’ll skip right over five and go for a “save two dollars on six“…

We have only just scratched the surface here, junk-wise, so stay tuned.

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