Month: February 2018

Bored, Part I: The Desk of a Packrat

It. Is. Still. Gray. And. Drizzly.  Only now it’s warm and drizzly instead of cold and drizzly.  Everyone is starved for sunshine.  I’ve been wanting to take Sigyn to the zoo for weeks, but we haven’t had a sunny day since the New Year began.

Still, every dark, damp cloud has a silver lining, and the good thing about all this gray, miserable weather, is that the human female has been sick and she is currently mute, except for that horrid cough.

I’m bored, and since it’s too wet to go exploring outside, Sigyn and I have decided to see what mischief  adventures we can get up to closer to home.  Today we shall brave…. the Human Female’s Desk!

Our first find is:  Food!  No surprise there.  She’s always gobbling something.


Help yourself.  She doesn’t need another snack anyway, especially a salty one.  She’ll just  swell up like a balloon.

Great Frigga’s hairpins!  Look at the clutter on this corner of the desk!  There must be a hundred sticky notes and bits of paper.  Doesn’t she ever tidy this up?  Ugh!  And that page-a-day!  Kitteh-speak!  I may hurl.


Sigyn is entranced by the picture of the man in the snow.  Dearest, that is a Yule album.  That should give you some idea of when the last time was the human female put anything away.

Fisi!  What are you doing here?  I thought I told you to stay home today!  Then again, a slavering hyena couldn’t make this piece of real estate any less of a pig-sty, so knock yourself out.

Hmm.  What’s this in front of the keyboard?  A hurried jotting of a discount code that the human female could have applied to the two dozen stools she just ordered from this exact same vendor. . .

missed coupon

. . .Had she not ordered them on the seventeenth.  What’s the rest of that scribbling?  Sigyn says it’s a genetics problem involving eye color in fruit flies.  I don’t know…  That’s a lot of X’s and males and females…  I think she’s planning an orgy.  That could get her fired!  I’d better put this on her boss’ desk.

Ooo!  What is this thing?


It’s round and woody and hollow, like a little pot.

And it’s full of these weird, hard-coated wedges.


It’s either some new-fangled human-feeder, like the pellet machines at petting zoos or those treat balls that make a dog work for its noms,  or the fruit of some member of the Lecythidaceae.  I’d say all are equally likely.

>|: [

This One’s Yours

Oh, human female, I know you are perpetually trying to lose a few pounds.  Since the weather’s been bad and exercise is tough because your feet are still six kinds of messed up, you’ve been working on something you call “portion control.”  I know it’s been hard, because you really do love to put your snout in the trough and just inhale.

Now, I never try to lose weight, of course, because the more of me, the better, but I’m willing to help you out.   Never let it be said that I’m unsympathetic.

Take tonight, for example.  Sigyn is visiting her sister, but the blue-haired goddaughter is here for dinner, and we are having fish.  These potato-crusted fish-oid objects are actually pretty tasty!  I’ve used my magic to make sure you don’t over-eat by right-sizing the “fillets” remaining in the bag.

See?  Two for me, two for the human male, two for the blue-haired goddaughter, and this special one for you.


You’re welcome.

>|: [

Everything Works Out

The human female is sick.  She’s got a barky cough that would put a seal to shame, and various goos oozing from her nose and eyes.  You’d think that would put a damper on the mood in the household, but you’d be wrong.  It doesn’t bother me at all.  Everything is working out fine.

She’s is currently sitting on an uncomfortable chair, wearing a face mask and waiting to see a doctor.  She’s playing games on her tablet to pass the time.  Look at that!  She has won over 1,000 games of something called “Penguin.”  It makes me wonder… When did she start?  Is that some sort of record?  How far could she go?  What happens if I push this little button right here?  Poink!  And I thought I’d be bored!


Hmm.  The doctor has pronounced the old nag, “Fit to take out behind the barn and shoot.”  I could have told him that.

Now she’s at the pharmacy, waiting on one of those drugs that’ll make her feel three-quarters dead before it makes her feel better.  But Sigyn and I are enjoying hanging out (literally) in this jasmine planted by the parking lot.  It’s the first, best blooming thing we’ve seen this spring!


So you see, it’s a great day!

>|: [

Did You Ever Go Shopping and Not Find Anything Good?

The humans are out and about, doing some poking in various emporiums.  Being a little bored, I’ve tagged along.

First stop, the grocery store.


I don’t know much about mortal children and their fascination with dinosaurs, but I can tell you that making kale and spinach into little bilgesnipe shapes would not have induced me or my brother to eat them.   (shudder)  I’m the actual god of mischief and I would never have come up with such a hideous idea.

We’re at the bookstore now.


Augh.  I can’t go anywhere without running into his stupid face.

>|: [

I Made Something Fun for Sigyn

The weather has been interminably cold, gray, and drizzly lately.  Everything is damp and clammy.  I wanted to do something fun for my sweetie to keep her spirits up.  I considered a lot of options, but in the end, all I had to do was shove a few electrons around.

Every year, this Midgardian city indulges in a spate of self-congratulation.  It started small, with residents voting for the best restaurant, best grocery, and whatnot. Over the years, it has expanded, like a metastasizing mushroom to include all sorts of weirdly specific categories, many of which might have only one representative.  Everybody wins!

They’ve published the results for last year.


It displays correctly on a laptop or desk top, but I did a little niggling and touch of nudging, and the display on a tablet is…off just a little, with hilariously disastrous results.  The following are actual screencaps.


Mmm.  I think I’ll have two whitewalls, over-easy.   And then the potato salad facial.


Sigyn, do you suppose Blue Baker uses a chipper-shredder to grate the cheese for their cheddar bread?   And I’d heard that modern tractors and combines have very comfy cabins, but I think they may have carried it a bit too far


Barbecued eyeballs?  Slow-smoked carburetor?   Suddenly the human female’s hit-or-miss cooking is looking better and better.


Do you suppose they take all the flowers from the funerals and sell them?  It’s what I’d do.


This confirms some suspicions I’ve had about a certain place’s coffee.   But now I have new suspicions that that second outfit is making feeble little elderly people polish chrome and wax hubcaps.


Yikes!   Sigyn, you are NOT going to either of these places  for your next girly check-up.


I guess the kitties that don’t make it become next week’s gut strings on sale?


If you never want to see your kids again, send them off to school at Readfield and rent them an apartment at that first place.  If they do manage somehow to make it through the semester, do NOT eat in the dining room on Sausage Night.  (Or ask about their absent roommate you met that one time.)


Ask yourself this:  under all the grease and sauce, can you really tell chicken from…rat?

Also, I’m pretty sure that is actually who the human female calls to help her with her trotters, since they have the full complement of chisels and chainsaws.


Well, I suppose washing and dyeing windows is good therapy for developing your hand-eye coordination and building up your upper-body strength, but I now have a new place I’m not ordering chicken from.


Along with a place I no longer get my subs.

I have to wonder about those other two places, though.  I can see where little bits of muffin could be very useful rewards for teaching your puppy to heel, but I always thought the most-used phrase for night clubs wasn’t, “Sit means sit,” but “No means No.”


This just in:  Scrubs are what the well-dressed woman is wearing this season!   I am not hiring an outfit that has “Dusty” right in its name to clean anything.  And I wonder what people more used to scrubbing and polishing really know about motherboards and processors.

Ah.  Sigyn giggling is my very favorite sound.  Mission accomplished.

>|: [

All Ready For The Presentation

The human female has identified a source of biodegradable lab gloves that break down in a landfill in just a couple of years, instead of hundreds.  I actually support this idea wholheartedly.  Not, of course, because I really care about the environment, but because the gloves are green.

She is putting together a presentation to pitch widespread adoption of these gloves throughout the A&M system.  It is full of boring charts and tables about elasticity, degradation in a landfill, blah, blah, blah.  snore.


I think I’ll tag along and help her out.  It’s always fun when the room’s projector won’t work with someone’s version of Powerpoint.  Or when the presenter has the choice of the room seeing the slides but she not being able to see her notes on her computer, OR the entire room getting to see the slide-plus-speaking-notes version.

She’s taking along some business cards in case anyone wants to talk to her ever again after what’s sure to be like a train wreck you can’t look away from.   Cards are a great idea!  I think I’ll make some of my own…


>|: [

Mischief Update: A Lot to Pack Into A Month, Part III—Odds and Ends

So much mischief, it won’t all fit in one post!

Remember the parking lot/garage foul-up?  I hinted that the humans might end up back in the garage, having to hike from there into work every way.  Well, back they are, since their parking space is currently behind a fence.  A fence, I’m tickled to say, that went up behind their car one day, meaning that the human female had to undo some wires and dismantle a joint of the fence so that they could get the car out and drive home.  And people say *I* am into vandalism!  The whole parking lot project was supposed to be over on January 29, then a memo that came out that advised parking patrons that there’d been yet another delay.  Late last week, parkers were told that their spots would be available today.  Ehehehehehe.  No.  Who knows when–or if!–they’ll ever get their space back.  Do I even need to mention that there’s no provision for reimbursing them for the difference in price between a reserved, numbered spot and the free-for-all that is the garage.

Meanwhile, purchasing continues to offer many opportunities for me to make the human female’s life a nightmare.  She did eventually get the termites she had to emergency order from the Alternate Purveyor of Squiggly Things when the Purveyor of Squiggly Things shut down operations for a few days, due to the same ice storm that knocked out the first day of the semester here.  Unfortunately, said termites all lost the will to live and were engulfed in some strange fungus within forty-eight hours.  In a tizzy, the human female turned to one of the entomology labs on campus, one that studies structural pests.  They were happy to give her a small bucket o’ blattodea.

She also arranged for some of the program’s micropipettors to be repaired and calibrated.

Image result for micropipette

The repair people were accurate and speedy, but the paperwork they gave the human female didn’t say “Invoice” at the top, so the Departmental Bean Counters wouldn’t pay it.  She had to ask the repair folks for more paperwork.   When she turned that in, someone dropped the ball somewhere, because the Pipette People have sent her a nastygram, asking where their payment is.

The human female had to order some of these the other day:

Image result for volvox

That’s the remarkably photogenic green alga Volvox.  Given that they are living, breathing things, one has to loosen the cap on the jar immediately upon receipt.  Unfotunately, one of the jars in the human female’s shipment had been opened prior to packing, so it was–alas!–spilled all over inside the carton.  The human female called the Purveyor of Squiggly Things to ask if they couldn’t just put a replacement jar in with the following week’s supplies.  That’d make sense, wouldn’t it?  Oh, no no no!  The POST insisted that materials from different POs couldn’t possibly be sent in the same box.  They were perfectly willing to ship a single jar air freight, overnight at their own expense, but no way was a jar of Volvox going to be put in with anything else.  Some days I don’t think I will have to do much at all to take over this realm.  They are going to inefficient themselves out of existence with no help from me.

The human female continues to look for errors in the online textbook that’s going to be adopted in the fall.  She’s in chapter eleven and has twenty-plus pages of notes.  She found one figure that has 8 separate things wrong with it and was properly horrified.  Then she found another with 10 errors…  I’m not sure she realizes I’m messing with it all before she looks at it and fixing it after she’s been through.  I just like to watch her get all exercised and red-faced.  She can send those corrections to the publishers all she wants. They’re just going to toss them in the garbage, I’m sure.

Everyone around her and the human male has had the flu. They haven’t—yet—but have had their share of colds and snotty noses.  It’s winter.  It’s cold.  It’s drizzly.   Everything is damp.  Everyone feels at least a little unwell.  The human female is lucky when she has three staffers in place, let alone all four.  Consequently, she’s been doing a fair amount of lab prep.  Today, two of her techs are out, and even though she is sick, she came in to help prep!  Stop whining, woman!  Hefting microscopes and wiping down lab benches is good exercise.

So there it is.  It’s been a busy month.   All in all, I give it a solid eight out of ten.

>|: [

Mischief Update: A Lot to Pack Into A Month, Part II—Doomed to Disappointment

The human female doesn’t need any more Stitching Stash, and that is a provable fact. She will have to live to be two hundred and fifty to use up half of what she has in the way of quilt fabric, thread, and needlework projects.  But she always likes to look at things and to order more.

She received some money as a Yule gift last year, and after much pondering and hemming and hawing and driving everyone up the wall with her indecision, settled on these two designs.


She wrote to the designer of that red one and asked if the separate squares could be substituted into the squares of the sampler, since she didn’t want to stitch two Yule goats.  “Yes,” replied the designer, “But those aren’t goats, they’re deer.”  Here’s a towel, mortal.  You can wipe the egg off your face.

When she finally unclenched her wallet and went to actually order them online, it was only to find that I’d massaged a few electrons and the website refused point blank to honor her gift certificate.  She tried again the next day, calling the shop directly.  They couldn’t get their software to accept it either.  Eventually they did allow as how the GC hadn’t been redeemed yet, and they agreed to process the order, somehow managing to insinuate that the whole muddle was all her fault.

In any case, she won’t get a chance to stitch them any time soon, because a) she’s still busy ruining quilting on that cowboy thing, and b) the bird kit is shipping from a different part of Midgard and can take from 3 to 12 weeks to arrive.  Give or take, estimate-wise.   So, no joy there.

She has a birthday this month (and oh!  How it galls me to have to share the same one-twelfth of the calendar with her!), and after a lot of deliberation, she decided that, as she sometimes designs her own pieces, it would be useful to have the latest thread color card from Da Most Colors, a very popular brand.


Sigyn was looking forward to its arrival almost as much as she was, because it actually has little samples of all the threads and Sigyn likes to look at them and imagine what she’d do with them.

The human male agreed that this would be a sensible and useful gift, so he tried to order one.  However, between when he first saw it advertised and when he clicked to purchase, the company had all sold out.  A bit of sleuthing on the human female’s part turned up a supplier in this part of Midgard, who had them at a very attractive price.  Boom!  Ordered!

Boom! Currently sold out, possibly shipping next month…

To console herself, she contemplated ordering this kit online.


She’d stumbled into the motherlode of kits from Russia, designs she’d never seen before.  So exciting!  But then she noticed that a number of them looked familiar as artwork, not as kits, and she started to wonder about copyrights, etc.  Now, if it had been me, I’d have ordered the kit of summer flowers because it was much prettier and included lots of green hit the “buy” button anyway because copyright/schmopyright, but she’s such a goody-goody that she regretfully closed the browser window.

And I know you’ve heard me mention the human female’s bad trotters.  (Everyone’s heard.  All she does is WHINE.)  The minute she gets one problem cleared up, another surfaces.  She’s in search of comfortable shoes.  (It’s amazing how many of Midgard’s women spend their lives in this pursuit.   Hela’s houseslippers!  I’ll wager that if I magicked up some cute but comfortable shoes I could win over half of the planet in one go!  Note to self: look into this…)  Recently, she ordered what she thought might be her answer.  They arrived speedily.


And departed in the same fashion.  She has now given up any hope of ever being able to wear anything even remotely “cute” and is just looking for “does not make me want to gnaw my leg off.”

I can do this all day.

>|: [


A Perfect Present

The human female’s birthday was on Tuesday.   She has now passed up merely “old” and is rapidly approaching “decrepit.”  I did not observe her birthday or get her anything, because, really, what did she do?  She was born.  Her mother did all the work.  If you ask me, SHE deserves the consolation prize for putting up with such a child for so long.

Yesterday was Valentine’s Day.  My sweetie and I spent a lovely evening canoodling.  The humans, boring couple that they are, went to sleep early.  I did not send them any valentines because a) I don’t love them and b) I’m cheap.

Today, though, my conscience has pricked me just a bit.  I have relented.  Taking advantage of the post-holiday sales, I bought the human female a tiny box of chocolates and these lovely snapdragons.


They should suit her very well.

>|: [