I don’t know if my minions have been keeping track, but it has been eight years–and more!–since I began my conquest of Midgard. In that time, I have perpetrated endless mischief, traveled widely, seen many strange sights, and met the love of my life.
I don’t seem to be making any progress on actually taking over the planet. Given that, I think it is time to fall back a bit, regroup, rethink, and concentrate for a while on world domination rather than wreaking havoc on the human female’s car door locks. I shall step away from this blog for a bit, refocus my godly energies and, Norns willing, return.
In the meantime, why not go back to the beginning of the archive and start over? My exploits are no less glorious for having been told before.
I shall keep an eye on the comments, in case anyone cares to send a missive. Farewell for now.
Just to throw a little more mischief into the ongoing saga of home repair for the humans–you know, the one that started ten months ago with walnut-sized hail on the roof–I arranged for the gutter-putter-upper people to finally show up. Randomly. Unannounced. There was a knock at the door and Surprise! Gutters!
There were a few hours of metallic screeching and some thumping, and the felines wandered around with eyes like saucers, ears pricked and listening for every bumpety squeal, but eventually the job was done.
Habemus pluvia tetigisset domatum fistuli!
The new gutters look quite nice. They are actually white again. The old ones had acquired a patchy patina of algae and grime, and the human female–unsurprisingly–had never gotten around to dragging out the ladder and an old toilet brush and a bucket of soapy water to scrub them. Now she’s gloating that she doesn’t have to.
I can’t have that! I have arranged a little surprise.
I have seen to it that the gutter-putter-uppers decamped with enough alacrity that they did not police the yard quite as thoroughly as they ought to have done. The human female, the first time she mows the lawn, is going to find some goodies in the grass. Let’s go see what they left behind.
What do you think of this one, Sigyn?
That ought to make a satisfying WHANNNNNNG! when the mower hits it, don’t you think?
And then there’s this. I wasn’t quite sure what the workmen would leave, but I’m really impressed by this one!
Not only does it have sharp edges, it’s pointy. I bet it could go through a shoe. Whether she steps on it or hits it with the mower, there’s sure to be some drama.
After a conveyor belt full of sushi and a custard-stuffed fish, the human female is just about capable of waddling to our next stop. Luckily for her, it’s in the same shopping strip. I, of course, being possessed of a godly constitution, could eat six or seven more fish waffles and not think twice about it.
This store has a really strange name–99 Ranch Market. I don’t know where that comes from; I find that Midgardian naming conventions often don’t make sense. It seems to be a Purveyor of All Things Asian. I do like a good rummage through an Asian grocery, even when there aren’t any rice cakes to poke. Come, Sigyn, let’s have a good snoop!
The produce section is quite colorful! The riper persimmons are orange.
There appear to be a LOT of unripe ones, though. I’ve heard that the unripe ones are horrifically astringent and unpleasant to eat. I think I’ll buy some, take them home, slice them up, dry the slices, and mix them into the container of sliced dried mango the human female has for snacking… When she gets to stuffing her face, she often doesn’t pay attention to what she’s inhaling. If I can get her face to pucker up really tightly, maybe it’ll stick that way. (Couldn’t look worse than the current configuration of features.)
Odin’s Eypatch! Sigyn, look at the size of this pummelo!
You could really hurt someone if you chucked that at their head! I’ve always suspected that’s why they call them pummel-os. Supposedly, they’re a lot like grapefruit on the inside. Half the weight is peel, though, so I balk at spending the money on so much rind. Really, kumquats are more bang for the buck, since they’re entirely edible. They are also good for throwing.
And here’s yet another thing that would be good for lobbing at annoying people!
Big, heavy, and spiky! If someone were to hit someone else in the head with one of these jackfruit, there could be concussions and bloodshed and lamentation. I like that in a comestible.
It’s not all weaponizable fruit in here. There are also inexplicable packaged items.
It looks like blow-in insulation or poodle clippings, but if the label’s to be believed, it is very finely shredded, sweetened, dried pork. I believe this is also known as rousong or pork floss. Like cotton candy, but with more oink. I think it’s used mostly as a condiment or topping in situations that are too fancy for plain bacon, but I’m willing bet money the human male would eat this right out of the container with a spoon if allowed to.
Sigyn, predictably, has lost no time in finding the chocolate milk.
Do you really want the drink, my love, or do you just think the characters are cute? Hmm. I borrowed the human female’s phone to check up on these Gaspard and Lisa people. Wikipedia says, “Gaspard and Lisa are two fictional characters appearing in a series of children’s books… Gaspard (black with a blue scarf) and Lisa (white with a red scarf) go on various adventures. Gaspard, Lisa, and their family members are drawn as animals, but live among humans in Paris, with the titular characters attending an ordinary school alongside human characters. Officially, Gaspard and Lisa are neither dogs nor rabbits.” What are they unofficially? It’s all very suspect.
I think I will choose myself a birthday present. As long as we are in the beverage aisle, I can look for the Loki-est thing they have.
Jörmungandr would be proud.
I bet it makes horrific burps. Possibly even lightable. There’s only one way to find out!
More pretty stamps have come in the mail today! Stamp days are the best days, because all of these envelopes from far-away places come stuffed with the most beautiful flowers. And in February, when it’s cold, we need all the flowers we can get, right?
Sometimes the stamps on the envelopes are as nice as the ones inside.
My friend doesn’t collect mushrooms, but this is a lovely one anyway. I love the color! I’m not sure how it made it through the post without being cancelled! Wasn’t that lucky?
I couldn’t tell what these stamps were…
…until I realized they were upside down snow-cat vehicles and not little cottages with very smokey chimneys. But since they’re for Antarctica, it’s appropriate that they’re upside down! Hee hee hee!
This envelope came all the way from Serbia. And the sender put yellow flowers on!
And also purple ones!
We can soak those off and put them in the album. Bonus!
“Loki, come look at the other stamps on this envelope! They’re gorgeous! They look like little icons!“
“Religious icons or computer screen icons?”
“Church ones, but they’re sooo pretty!”
“No thanks. You know that sort of thing gives me hives. But you go ahead and enjoy them.”
Loki is missing some great art!
I think maybe they are from Christmas and Easter.
All in all, a very special envelope!
Ово је најлепша коверта икад послата поштом!
But what’s inside the envelope?
Loki has no problem with the contents, but I’m afraid he’s not as big a fan of vegetable stamps as I am.
Aren’t these just the most beautiful stamps ever?
Red berries! Fruit! APPLES!!!!!
I know that I’m supposed to be very careful around stamps and not handle them except with tongs, but it’s all I can do not to hug all of these!!!
The human female has called one of the collision repair auto shops recommended by the dealership. She is speaking to what sounds to be a nice Russian man, trying to explain to him just what is going on with the door locks on the car.
Aha! Кажется, у нас назначена встреча на завтра утром, хотя они очень заняты.
Uh oh. The human female is thinking. This is never a good thing. Here is her reasoning: If there is a door sensor problem because the door has become a bit pushed in, then building up the door a bit so that it contacts the body panel sooner or harder as the door is closed might fix it. And if that is something that can be done without taking the car to Sergei and Company, so much the better. All right. It’s you talking, which ordinarily means gibberish is happening, but I can see how that makes sense. But just how are you intending to build up the body panel?
Sweet Sif on a Cracker! Human male, come and get your woman, because I think she has finally lost it.
She has exited the house carrying a spoonful of peanut butter and a strong magnet.
Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot. She has opened the driver’s side car door and–I kid you not–has appliedpeanut butter to the door-is-closed sensor.
How on Midgard is that going to—
Ooohhhh. Now I see what she is doing. She has shut the door and opened it again, and now there is a dot of peanut butter on the door where it contacts the sensor.
Now she is wiping the peanut butter off the spot and sticking on the big, chunky magnet, effectively making the door thicker!
But does it work? Pushing the lock button on the fob. . . Click! Tug. Tug. Tug. Tug. All the doors are locked! Mortal, you may not be as stupid as you look after all!
She is so proud of herself that I’m sure she’s going to be insufferable for a week. She’s even calling the collision shop to cancel her appointment. She’s not speaking to her helpful but harried Russian comrade, and the fellow who answered the phone is asking her with whom she spoke yesterday. And he’s laughing, because apparently everyone says the guy sounds Russian but
هو في الواقع من لبنان
I can’t believe she actually pulled it off. I can’t let this stand. I’m going to have to get involved.
All hail Loki, god of comeuppances. I really couldn’t let her have fixed everything so easily. She has taken the car out this afternoon to go do some work at the food bank, and just now when she got out of the car, I made sure the seat belt retractor was a little s l o w, and the door shut on the buckle tab. Ehehehe! Now she knows why her door is a little pushed in just there, because I make that happen a lot!
The peanut-butter-scented magnet is still in place. Will the doors still lock? No! That one door is back to being petulant and wonky! Ehehehehe! Now how smart do you feel?
Oh, and be sure and take all your belongings into the food bank because this is a sketchy neighborhood and your vehicle is unsecured.
She is home from the food bank and is determined to deal with the door once and for all. It is bitterly cold today, windy and threatening sleet, so I am greatly amused as I watch her fumble once more with peanut butter and a magnet. Heh. It’s not working today, is it?
Wait, what is she rummaging in the garage for? Mortal, just what do you intend to do with a coping saw? Isn’t that a little drastic?
voop-a, voop-a, voop-a. Silly woman has cut herself a three-inch piece of 1″ x1″ wood (an old tree stake, I believe) and wedged it into the malfunctioning door handle so that the locking tab cannot spring free.
But what’s the other magnet doing in there? Oh, just taking up a little more room. That is the kludgiest kludge job I have ever seen! Did it work?
We all know the human female is bor-ing, but today she is also bor-ed. She has decided to catch up on some of her recorded television shows while exploring her Yule gift from the blue-haired goddaughter.
SweetSif on a Cracker. It would appear that she’s playing with her little bits of colored plastic again. (I still fail to see the appeal.) She has hidden the box from us, so I’ve no idea what she’s making. The kit includes a tool for prying the pieces apart. It’s like they know she’s going to mess it up!
I can’t tell from the instructions what this is going to be, Sigyn. Can you?
There are six bags of bits, so it could be almost anything. I guess she is starting with a base of some sort.
Grey bits go under beige bits. Got it.
Ehehehehe! She got to step four and discovered she’d gone wrong at step two!
Those beige bits need to go long sides together, not short sides together. What an idiot!
Sigyn has located the funny white corner pieces the human female needs next.
All right. We’ve reached this point, and I still don’t know what we are making.
Some sort of decorative firepit???
Do you think I should start a fire? Because I think I should start a fire. . .
The human female has started on another portion of the model.
It is even less informative than the previous part! What is that one small part blue? And what is the black rod poking out for?
Now it looks like it might be the stern portion of a ship…
But then what is the firepit for??
Hmm. I’m starting to get a notion…
Sigyn, I think this looks like a tree trunk. With vines What do you think?
Ha! I was right!
The blue-haired goddaughter, knowing well how black the human female’s thumb is, has supplied the wherewithal to build an ersatz bonsai tree.
Under whose shade I will now rest.
Do you wish to know the best part of this afternoon’s project? It’s a little bonus. The human female has discovered that trying to watch TV (far–requires spectacles) and build a model at the same time (near–does not require spectacles) is a sure-fire way to achieve an excruciating migraine.
The whole house party has wedged itself into one car for a short trip to the local Asian Market. We were here back in September, but there is always something good to be found in a shop such as this. The human female is in search of the black sesame cookie-crackers she hasn’t been able to find anywhere else. I’m just here to poke the rice cakes…
Sigyn has immediately zeroed in on a stack of bright red bowls,
though this mug with owls has caught her eye as well.
Sigyn and I have been walking a lot these days, and I have noticed something. Things are very odd here lately.
The weather has been very, very odd lately. Most days are running about 10 to 15 degrees F warmer than average, but every ten days or so a front comes through, blows another batch of leaves off the trees, stirs up everyone’s allergies, drops the temperatures to something resembling October rather than April, and then twenty-four hours later it’s all warm sunshine again.
No one knows what to wear, myself included. The cloak goes on, the cloak comes off, the cloak goes back on again. It needs to get real cold, REAL fast, please, because nobody needs to see the human female in shorts.
The flora is entirely confused. The winter annuals that should be waiting until January are already flowering, and a lot of the garden plants are still going strong. Look! Morning glories.
Look at her dangle! My beloved is absolutely fearless when it comes to hanging upside down.
I think she’s waiting for a bee to come and give her a little kiss.
(Another day) Now we are exploring the woody area between the Neener Path and the last street of houses in the neighborhood. The human female has been eyeing this patch of real estate for over year, wondering what is on the other side of the creek at the end of the Neener Path. Today we all have on our hiking boots (which in itself is odd enough), and it’s dry enough that we’ve been able to navigate the edge of the creek and follow it along.
Great Frigga’s Corset! Sigyn, did you know this was back here?
It’s a proper woodland stream oxbow! How odd to find it smack in the middle of suburbia! If you don’t look behind you– and pretend you aren’t within rock-throwing distance of the back of the houses– you could imagine yourself in a great little wilderness. This is a good Thoughtful Spot. I’ll have to come back when I have major mischief to plot.
(Another day) Today’s walk is in Central Park. Not THE Central Park, of course, just the local one, which is not terribly centrally located. While it has some woody-ish walking paths, it also has athletic fields and lights and places for cookouts and a playground, so it is almost completely unlike Lick Creek Park. Nothing odd about that, but what have we here? Someone has been defacing the tennis court!
What do you make of this, Sigyn? It looks like someone has been conducting a biological classification lesson in Chinese. How very, very odd! 您拼错了“kingdom”这个词，但您在正确列出分类级别方面得到了满分。
(Another day) Today we are just going around a couple of blocks. Nothing special. Bark at a dog here, poke a hole in an inflatable Yule decoration there. You know how it is. Hold on, though! What’s that odd blue thing in the leaf litter? Sigyn! Didn’t anyone ever tell you not to pick up things you find in the gutter?
(A bit later)
No. No, thank you. I don’t care how well you’ve washed it…
Recently, the humans heard about a small Oriental market tucked away in a little strip mall they have never been to. Apparently, it has been there for quite some time but they hadn’t been aware of its presence. They were quite excited, the male especially, since he would eat Asian food every day if allowed. (I suspect that if he had to give a blood sample, it would prove to be 87.4% soy sauce, but Sigyn says I’m not allowed to poke him and find out.)
Of course, we are all here now, checking out the wares. It is indeed a very small market, but for all its quaintness, it has a surprisingly large selection of items.
Sigyn has not made it past the cookie display.
Good choice, my love! Neither of the humans can eat chocolate, and the female is allergic to hazelnuts. You and I will be able to eat all of these ourselves.
There is a large assortment of snack foods.
Sigyn was greatly relieved when I told her that these are not made from actual pandas.
We are not sure what is in this package.
It’s either polar bear brand orange snacks or orange brand polar bear snacks. I’m not sure which option is more frightening.
The coolers are well-stocked.
Mushrooms, bitter melon, fresh noodles, and more. Sigyn thinks the lotus root slices are pretty. I have to concur. They look like little, crunchy wheels. I have been reliably informed that that is not also how they taste.
There are various sorts of fish in the freezer.
I…I don’t quite know what to make of that name. Little yellow croaker… I’m sure there’s a joke in there somewhere…
I think they have every sort of noodle and soup produced by humankind.
I googled… That’s tripe.
There are beverages here I have never seen in any other market.
*I’m* an alien. I might have to buy this.
Now, this one I have questions about.
Is it A) an uncommon beverage made from soybeans, B) a beverage made from uncommon soybeans, or C) a beverage made from under-cooked soybeans? And is it basically an edamame milkshake?
This is intriguing.
The human female says that prickly ash, slanty name Zanthoxylum, is a member of the citrus family. The leaves contain chemicals which cause a numbness or tingling of the mouth when chewed. A most unusual condiment!
(later) So, did we actually purchase anything? Of course we did! The human female selected some non-fried ramen-type noodles, Sigyn went with the hazelnut cookies, I brought home the alien energy drink, and the human male furthered his quest to eat every weird flavor of potato chip there is.
He says they were a bit warm, but not really hot, and not at all mouth-numbing.
Perhaps if he added the prickly ash oil…?
He also bought these because he cannot resist wasabi peas.
The rice dish had a lot of steps. With that taken care of, we can get started on the other recipes
The chicken dish actually had a sticky note on the page, put there by a previous library patron.
It looked so good, the humans didn’t bother to read many of the other entree recipes!
Looks simple enough.
It’s just chicken sauteed with turmeric, sumac and lime juice.The humans don’t actually have any sumac (unprepared, as per usual!), but they do have za’atar, which is a Turkish dish whose principal ingredient is sumac, so it’s a reasonable substitution.
Chicken thighs cooking. I’m glad the recipe doesn’t call for them to be cut up into bite-sized pieces because, frankly, boneless chicken thighs are a mess, a real labyrinth of different muscle groups and connectivey bits.
Time to make the salad! A specific amount of cucumber is called for. Is our one big cucumber equal to the three small ones the recipe stipulates?
It is! Now we peel and chop, then chop the tomatoes.
We’re omitting the raw onions (because –bleargh!), but we are including the lime juice and the minty mint from the side yard.
Mmmm. This is going to be good, trust me. Not at all like toothpaste!
We’ll let the salad ingredients get to know one another for a while,
While we reduce the cooking liquid from the chicken.
Everything is done!
Zero points for plating, but it all smells so good that I’m going to let presentation slide— just this once.