Month: June 2018

This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things, Part II: The Problem Is More Widespread Than We First Believed

All of the soft rubber balls have been humanely disposed of, and the humans have made a mental note not to bring any more into the house.

I’ve got news for you, mortals:  It’s not just the stress-foam balls that are falling prey to the ravages of the Terror Twins.

No, indeed!  Inspired by my own savagery, the felines have perpetrated horrors upon the toy population that make the ancient Midgardian practice of decimatio look like a pillow fight.

Blue Mousie is sans most of his tail,

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while Green Mousie is hemorrhaging stuffing from his ventral suture.  It’s barbaric.

And it’s not just the neon mousie population that has suffered.  These are just the victims Sigyn and I could find.  Many of them just Disappear.

For behold!  Here are the three sparkle pom-poms and the fifteen crinkle balls given to Taffy and Flannel.  Here are the three grey fabric mice with the colored ears, the grey fur mouse, the white fur mouse, and old black Turdmouse himself.

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The package-to-oblivion record for a crinkle ball is under ten seconds.

I am so proud.

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This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things, Part I: The Slaughter of the Innocents

Sometimes the humans come home to find something small and helpless has been…tortured by the felines.  It’s always distressing, and no one wants to be the one who has to clean up the carnage.

I have taught them well.  Both of them are avid hunters, chasing down their prey with unflagging energy, relentless in their pursuit, swift to catch and claw and rend.  Swirly-striped Taffy is deadly, no question, but it’s wide-eyed little Flannel Cat, the sweet-faced grey one, who leaves the most corpses in her wake.

Just look at this poor victim, cut down in its prime just yesterday.  It didn’t stand a chance against her vicious fangs.

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It… it was still soggy when the humans found its lifeless remains.  And they keep finding bits of it about.

And it wasn’t an isolated incident, either.  There’s a pattern of wanton destruction here that is frankly disturbing.

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Sigyn says (and I agree) that she hopes all the missing bits are accounted for.

Otherwise, the litterbox is going to be very colorful this week.

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Mischief Update

I’m trying to make good on my resolution to keep my populace up to date on my doings.  Since I last reported, I had all that good fun in New York, but not all of my mischief has been travel-related.

Vendors continue to be the bane of the human female’s existence.  Well, one of them, anyway.  I saw to it that the outfit that sold her the brobdingnagian paper shredder for the office ignored the billing instructions.  She received a “Past Due” notice on the not inconsequential purchase price , even though a) she hadn’t received the first notice and b) the invoice shouldn’t have been presented to her anyway.

The last batch of mosses and liverworts (ugh!–liverworts!  Sounds like something you’d need to take strong antibiotics for!) from the Purveyor of Squiggly Things is doing pretty well, survival wise, but some of the little sealed trays have been sprouting Arabidopsis seedlings right, left, and center.  I gather that the plant is the botanical equivalent of glitter.

The two new hires on the human female’s team are working our surprisingly well.  They and the two old tech are forming a really stable, cohesive unit.  I shall have to see if I can drop a few accusations in a few ears and turn them all against one another—or against the human female— before the cheerfulness level reaches annoying proportions.

Both new techs were hired at the same time, but I am having extra fun with one of the new employees and Workdon’t.  I made it so that he wasn’t showing up in the system and couldn’t log in.  Workdon’t didn’t recognize him.  It took about a week to get him to show up, and even then, he was only in there as his ID number.  “Good morning, ID number!”  It took another week to get the system to call him by his actual name.  Everyone was happy, until he realized that somehow, Workdon’t has latched onto his Social Security number and is using that for everything.  All attempts to code his ID card for building access and room access have failed, because Workdon’t’s number for him is his SSN, not his ID.  Meanwhile, he is also unable to select insurance options, so he’s completely uninsured.  No one seems to know the magic words to make him a Real Boy as far as Workdon’t is concerned.  He exists in Administrative Limbo. vENN

Everything works perfectly for the other new tech, of course.

I’ve arranged more fun surprises for the female’s work group.  There are some Mysterious Damp Patches in the hallway ceiling and in one of the rooms just adjacent.  Slow, Silent, and Costly came out to look, replaced the wet tiles, banged around, and said it was fixed.  (This was before the female went to New York).  The spots reappeared.  SSC decided it was the fire sprinkler system and sent three more techs, who said, “Nope, not our problem.”  Supposedly there is another work order in, but no one’s holding their breath.

I invited some little beetle-y friends to overrun the break room and the offices.  For days, no one could figure out what they were or where they were coming from.  Slow, Silent, and Costly sent out someone to set traps.  The human female returned from New York, took one look, and said, “Pantry pests.  Find the infested cereal and get rid of it.”  All sorts of nooks and crannies and drawers were investigated, to no avail.  Finally, after much consternation, the custodian found an old, abandoned carton of oatmeal behind some dishes in the back of a high cabinet.  Well, to be more precise, it was a carton of 75% insects and 15% insect frass, and 10% actual oatmeal.  I was peeved they found it so quickly!  Next time, it will be rotten shrimp heads behind the refrigerator.  Let’s see them suss THAT one out.

It wasn’t my only arthropod amusement.  The lawn, upon our return from New York, was courting-city-citation long, so the human female mowed.  I was trying to nap, and the mower annoyed me, so I tucked a green lynx spider inside her sleeve when she wasn’t looking, and it BIT her.  How was I to know she’d spring up in a big red welt and itch for a week?

Coming home from a trip is always a let-down.  There is always a huge pile of bills and junk mail to sort through  (I arranged a “buy a commemorative brick in the sidewalk” appeal from a church the humans don’t belong to, along with several “renew your membership” pleas from organizations they don’t belong to), the houseplants look floppy, there is weird stuff in the cooling unit, and no magic hotel staff to do the cleaning.  I’d left the felines instructions to shed copiously, which they did enthusiastically.  The human female has been sweeping regularly, and there are still cat-fur tumbleweeds drifting lazily from room to room.

The house clamored for some attention too.  The sprinkler system is old and crotchety, so it wasn’t much of a chore to get it to run in the middle of the night when the dial was actually set to “off.”

Then the human male decided to shave one day and pulled up the stopper thingy in the sink.  Imagine his surprise when the stopper-pull plunger bit came off in his hand!  (Yes, of course this was one of the faucets installed just before we left!)  He decided to investigate one of the two other identical faucets, to see if he could figure out how to fix it.  In so doing, he pulled the knob out of that one as well!  Ehehehehehe!  The human female was not happy.  She managed to get the stoppers out so the sinks could be used, and she made the male stay home from work so the plumber could make a return visit and do the work properly.

She was also not amused when the male, still suffering from a bum knee, used a towel rack to help lever himself up off the necessary.  Have you ever calculated the force necessary to pull one end of a towel bar out of sheet rock?  Hint:  it isn’t much.

I’ve had some fun with the weather as well.  Last week, it was supposed to pour buckets of rain for five days.  The Big City to the South had flooding, the humans had about two or three inches after getting nothing for three days of near 100% chance, and the local airport recorded half an inch total.  It often happens this way.  The human male’s hypothesis is that there is a thirsty bird at the airport, one who drinks out of the rain gauge.  That’s ridiculous!  Everyone knows it’s an opossum.

While the weather was gloomy, the human female got the notion to make a chicken pie, despite the fact that it was WARM and cloudy and not cool and cloudy.  She tried a new crust recipe.  It tasted all right, but she’s lost the knack of getting the top crust on straight and had to patch it up.

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The joins leaked in the oven, and the crust stuck to the shielding foil and ripped off.  it was tasty, but Volstagg’s beard crumbs!, that was definitely the “don’t do this” illustration for a pie-making article.

It’s good to be home…

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Sigyn the Fierce

Sigyn doesn’t usually like scary movies.  For some reason, though, she has just loved all the Jurassic Whosits films.  I’ve no idea why.

What’s that, my love?  It’s because the dinosaurs are cute and you’ve always wanted a pet stegosaurus and velociraptors probably just need hugs?

Oooookay.

Anyway, I mention this because we are out and about and Sigyn has just found something that she really,  wants.

It’s a dinosaur mask, and if the label’s to be believed, the jaws open and shut and it makes a realistic screeching noise while they do.

Yes, my dear, I can absolutely see that that is something everyone needs.  (?)

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But maybe you need a smaller size?

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It’s Time for the Annual Festivities!

It is officially summer, and you know what that means!

IT’S TIME FOR THE ANNUAL CHERRY-PULL!!!!

Every year I swear it’s going to be my turn to win, and every year, Sigyn ends up with the bigger piece of stem.  I don’t know how she does it, unless she just somehow has a rapport with fruit.

Sigyn?  Sorry, love, but this year, you are going down.

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Wait!  Wait–before you start tugging, I want to inspect the goods and make sure there aren’t hidden flaws in my stem!

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All right.  It looks sound enough.  On your mark… Get set…. PULL!

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Nnnnnnngh!   Sproing!

What the…?

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Sleipnir’s fetlocks!  I don’t believe it!  I’ve got the bigger piece!  I got the stem connector!  I’d better examine it carefully to make sure I’m not dreaming.

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Looks legit.   I…   Hang on just one minute.  Was Sigyn’s stem pre-nicked?

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You… You wouldn’t throw a match, would you???

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I…I don’t know.    She looks innocent enough, but don’t let that wide-eyed smile fool you.

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Back in the Saddle

Adventure over, the humans needs must settle back to work.  Back to students and faculty and vendors and invoices and strange directives from above and, and, and…

…And Workdon’t.  

They really have no room to complain, because I’ve given it a major overhaul.  No need to thank me, it’s a labor of love.  There is a whole new interface for them to enjoy!  (I’ve worked so very hard on it.  Behold!

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See?!  It must be improved.  I got rid of all the garish colors in favor of a nice monochrome scheme.

And the icons!  I’m particularly proud of them.  Don’t you think it’s convenient to have the same one for Team Performance,  Performance, and Career?  And for My Team and My Team Management?

And don’t say  you can’t tell the difference between Talent Management and My Team Management?  Those icons are very different.  It’s not my problem if you don’t know what they refer to!

I’ve heard mutterings that folks can’t decipher the symbols on the Benefits worklet.  Seriously?  It’s a heart and a tooth and a pair of spectacles.  Duh.

Best of all–just look at the Time Off icon!  That stuffy old briefcase is gone.  Gone, I say!  Look at it, people!  The suitcase now has zipper pockets.  And wheels!  See?!  It must be better!

Oh–you wanted improvements to how Workdon’t  functions.

Yeah, no.

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