Naughty Loki

Les Tubas, Ils Sont Arrivés

The human female was finally able to order her snorkels.   I made it a little hard for her, because she finally found some affordable ones at Rampartmart.  She had to order them online, because the local bricks-and-mortar store didn’t have as many as she wanted to buy.  I mean, who buys THIRTY snorkels all at once?

Now the human female and her Prep Staff have a tax-free card to use when they shop at the local Rampartmart, but of course they could not be allowed to use that number online.  Oh, no, no!  The human female had to set up an account and choose a password and send them a copy of the Department’s State of Taxes tax-free status before they’d even let her buy them.

They just arrived.  Sigyn, let’s see what we’ve got.

snorkelbox1

They’re green!  I don’t know what I was expecting, but it wasn’t green.  I approve.

snorkelbox2

There are a lot of them— a whole mountain for Sigyn to climb, but I don’t think there are thirty here.

snorkelbox3

Eleven, twelve, thirteen…. Nope. Not thirty!  Looks like the internet is no better than bricks and mortar.  The human female is hoping that when she finds the packing slip it says that more are coming from somewhere else.

Sigyn has never used a snorkel.  It’s easy, my love.  One end goes in your mouth and the other sticks up above the water into the air.

snorkelbox4

This is not how I imagined this would go…

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(later)  A lot of huffing and puffing and a little dab of Vaseline and some steady traction, and I finally have my sweetie back.

Oh, now you want to try on the included goggles?  Didn’t I just rescue you?  Be careful with these! They’re not like lab goggles.  These are for diving and the nose bit is covered. They’re kiddie sized, and if they fit tightly, you’re not going to be able to breathe.

snorkelbox6

Yeah, somehow I don’t think that’s going to be a problem…

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I Have Taught Them Well

The human female’s Prep Staff and the Teaching Assistants spend an inordinate amount of time trying to train the students to take proper care of the expensive equipment the labs are stocked with.  I spend a not inconsiderable amount of my time going around behind them and teaching them all my bad habits.

Pipettors, now.  Those are practically my stock and trade these days.  I haven’t actually counted how many the students have manhandled out of alignment or flat out broken. They absolutely do keep trying to abrogate the laws of physics and put 1800 microliters in a pipettor that holds 200 to 1,000.

And behold the fine job they have done with this one:

wonkypipette

They’ve discombobulated this one so thoroughly that the numbers no longer align!  That little beauty is going to have to have a little vacation and a nice trip back to the manufacturer to see if it can’t be cured of its dialular scoliosis. There’s another few that have been over-dialed so much that the piston-plunger has come right out and the pipettor is in two pieces.  I’d show you the photos because I love them dearly and shall treasure them always, but they’re just too gruesome. This is a marginally family-friendly blog, after all.

And then there are the microscopes.  Expensive, heavy, AND delicate, the trifecta of accidents waiting to happen.  The students insist on stealing eyepieces, using the coarse focus with the higher magnifications and ramming the objectives into the slides, smearing the focusing oil all over the lab when using the 1,000x magnification, tying the cords in knots, and putting them back oh, so improperly.

How should a microscope be put away?  The checklist goes something like this: Remove the slide.  Rotate the nosepiece so that the low power objective (the shortest one) is in position. Raise the stage, fold the cord neatly and tuck it between the stage and the light, and then lower the stage. Cover the scope and then put it into the cabinet front-first and hand-hold facing out so that when the cabinet doors are shut they don’t slam into the eyepieces.

Now, all that sounds much more complicated than it actually is.  A toddler, if he could somehow heft one of the heavy things, could do it.  I’ve convinced the college students, however, that it’s just too much trouble, so the human female and her staff are confronted with scenes like this:

badscope

That is stunning.  I’m not even sure how they got that in there!  The cord’s under the stage, all right, but this uncovered mess has one of the long objectives still rotated into place.  And then there’s the placement!  Whoever put this away transcended backwards and opted for sideways and SLANTY!  I sort of want to track this person down and shake their feckless little hand.

And wait–there’s more! There’s a bonus! My new favorite person has left the last-viewed slide in place.

badscope2

Well done, anonymous student! Well done.

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Fun With Unidentified Seasonal Fruit

The human male has come home from doing the marketing with a surprise for the female. And here it is. It’s a… It’s a…

quince1

I have no idea what it is.

Sigyn, is that anything you recognize? It looks like an apple, a pear, and a lemon had too much to drink and this was the sad  result. It’s hard as a brick, too, isn’t it?

quince2

Volstagg’s straining waiscoat buttons! Look at the arse on that thing!

I have a hard time believing that this is actually supposed to be edible. Surely this is a Joke Fruit. I don’t trust it. Nope, Not. At. All.

The human female says this is something that isn’t meant to be eaten raw.  She’s whacked it into pieces with extreme prejudice and no finesse, and now she’s got the pieces simmering with sugar in a saucepan.

quince3

Careful, dearest!  Don’t fall in!

Hmmm. I detect a hint of dessertification happening here.  The human female has added apples, sugar, spices, and a little corn starch.

quince4

Sigyn approves of sugar and spices.  If allowed, I believe she would wallow.

(later) The human female chucked the whole mess onto a crust in a pie plate. I “helped” her roll out the top crust. Oopsie. She cut out some pastry stars to cover up the giant tear.  It’s been baking for a while now, and it smells as if it might be done.

quince5

Oh, yeah. Those stars are totally disguising your failure.

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There’s That Word Again…

It’s a universal phenomenon. Happens on all nine realms and in all the places in between. You hear a new word, something you’re absolutely certain you’ve never heard before. And then suddenly, boom! You run into it three times in the next week.

Today’s word is: SNORKEL. Sigyn ran into it at the pen show last week and fell in love with it. Every now and then she’ll say it to herself and giggle. “Snorkel.” It is indeed a funny word.

Believe it or not, the human female is trying to buy some. She needs them for an upcoming lab exercise. The students will be conducting an experiment on the diving response in humans. Apparently, this primitive species retains some animal hard-wiring. When their faces or heads go under cold water, their heart rate slows. The human female wants to see if this response occurs if the test subjects can still breathe while their heads are under water.

Searching for “snorkels” brings up a wide array of options. Everything from professional divers’ gear to cheap plastic kiddie models. The human female is now muttering under her breath—the really good ones are upwards of $30.00 apiece, which is not at all within the target price range for a state-supported institution.

Now she’s checking to see if perhaps the Vendor Who’s Responsible has them. I’ve tweaked their search algorithm for “better functionality,” and I’m delighted she gets to try out its new features. Ping!  Her search has yielded results.trying to buy snorkel

Ehehehehe! Cheap plastic kiddie models it is, then.

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Things to Hug and Things to Eat

I must admit to enjoying the movie.  Sigyn liked the costumes.  I liked the snark.  

Now all of us, including the friends the humans met up with earlier today, are supposed to go eat dinner.  The rendezvous place?  One of the fun Japanese stores.  It is much like the one in the big city to the west.

It is full of things Sigyn wants to make friends with.

d-kinok-dog

I know you want to take the puppy home, sweetie, and having one more animal to shed on the human female’s clothes is an appealing prospect, I grant you, but it wouldn’t get along with the Terror Twins.

Yes, you are right. This dragon would not shed–at at least not hair.  And I can see that though he looks fierce, he is just a big softy.

d-kinok-dragon

But how big is he going to grow?  You need to think ahead.  Once he’s the size of a house and the neighbors start complaining, you’ll be sad.  That’s right: give him one last hug and tell him goodbye.

That was close!  I thought for a minute we were adding a dragon to the family.  Sigyn, are you about ready to go eat? Sigyn–?

Where did Sigyn go?

I should have known.

d-kinok-panda

Sigyn has been adopted by a family of pandas.  She says that she doesn’t want to bring one home with us, because it would miss all its brothers and sisters and cousins, but she wants to know if she can come back to visit every now and then.

I think that could be arranged…

Dinner awaits!

Looks like we will be eating with sticks again.  Oh, goody.  (I can do it, but ramen is splattery, and my cloak has enough problems already.)

hanabi-ramen1

Ehehehe. I’ve arranged a little surprise for the human female.  She was in the mood for chicken ramen, but ALL the ramen on the menu is pork belly!  (That’s what you get for dragging me to a place that makes me eat with sticks.)  So sad!  Looks like it’s veggie ramen for you!

And all the dumplings for me!

hanabi-ramen2

Well, I’ll share with Sigyn, of course. But none for the rest of you!

Nom nom nom.  Tummy’s full now.  Since I missed my movie nap, I think I may sleep all the way home.  (Which is just as well, as the conversation is sure to be 100% pens.)

Snzzzz….

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Escape From the Pen Show

The human female and the blue-haired goddaughter plan to leave the males behind and go off to spend the afternoon together.  Sigyn wants to go with them.  Given the choice between more pens and perhaps another run-in with someone who looks like my brother on the one hand and listening to the females prattle on the other, I have chosen prattle.

I believe the plan is to go to view a film.  Outstanding!   If nothing else, I can get a nap if the soundtrack’s not too loud.

The film is showing at a cinema in a very, very fancy mall.  How fancy?  Observe the seasonal decorations.  Every one of the innumerable planters is full of pumpkins–great big, hideously expensive ones.  Little, tiny, throwable ones.  Strange, striped, and warty ones.  There must be tens of thousands of dollars worth of larval pie in here.

mallpumpkins

This place may be as upscale as it comes, but there are some decidedly strange folks in this place.  Take this trio outside of the theater:

mallfrogs

Sigyn, light of my life, are you sure you should be posing with them?  They look singularly untrustworthy!

Ah!  Time to enter the cinema!  The tickets were ridiculously expensive for a matinee.  I shall indeed take great delight in sleeping through the feature, just to annoy the human female.

On the other hand, there is some waspishly good dialogue in this one.  Instead of napping, I think I shall take notes.

downton-abbey

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To Fill Pens–And Bellies

It is now midday-ish, and the humans are starting to make hungry noises.  Since our party has encountered a group of friends, there are now seven humans to organize as to what to dine upon and where to do it.  The human female has been enthusiasing prolifically about an eatery she found online.  It has a huge menu!   It has good prices!  It has great reviews!  It is mere blocks from the location of the pen show!  It is only open until 2:00, so we had better get into our respective vehicles and skedaddle!

It is most emphatically not open today!   Ehehehehe!  I knew that and you didn’t!  Try again, mortals!  You will have to feast upon something else.  And since you called the blue-haird goddaughter to meet up with you, you will have to re-direct her to whatever venue you choose.

(a short while later)  So here we all are in a tiny diner that appears to specialize in bagels and other sandwiches.  I think by walking in our group has doubled their daily clientele.  Do you see something you would like to try, Sigyn?

lunch1

While we wait for the food to arrive, everyone is pulling out their pen show purchases and comparing notes.

The human male and female seem to have been focusing on ink.  These are the female’s choices.

inkhaul

The box with the illuminated manuscript design of a whale holds what is purported to be an indelible medium blue ink.  Sensible choice, although there must already be fifty shades of blue in the house.  The other bottle holds a very pale, girly shade of watery blue.  The human male keeps asking the female if she’s sure she’s going to like it, because anything written with it is certainly going to be difficult to read.  She is stalwartly defending her choice.  No matter to me–I don’t have to use it.

The human male has bought green (upon which I am standing) and a shade of deep brownish-red called “Red Beans and Rice.”  Sigyn is intrigued by the fancy wax seal.

inkhaul2

The human male is sniggering as he places the next bottle before me.

inkhaul3

“White Lightning”?  Oh, I see.  You are throwing Thor up to me again.  Ha ha ha.  Very clever, mortal.  I note that this liquid is supposed to make stubborn inks flow more freely.  Very well.  You can be sure I’m going to “freely” a pen all over your pocket in the near future.  Then we’ll see who’s laughing.

Some of the pen vendors hand out little trinkets in their booths.  Today it seems to be stickers.  I’ve got one that looks like a splat of the human female’s pale blue ink, which is sort of lame.  Sigyn, however,  has a fancy hologram one.

inkhaul4

*I* want a fancy hologram one!  Pout.

Wait! Why is everyone putting away the ink—?  Oh.  I see. The food is coming out.  The males have mostly ordered meaty wrap-like objects.  Sigyn and the human female appear to have ordered the most veggie thing on the menu.   Vegetable cream cheese with lettuce, spinach, cucumber, tomato, sprouts, and avocado on a sesame bagel.

lunch-bagel

To judge by the rapturous noises they’re making, it’s quite tasty indeed, but I’m feeling peevish as well as peckish, so the human female can expect to have to fight every second to keep all the delicious ingredients from sliding right out of the bagel onto her shirt.

Now, where’s my gyro?

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