poke poke poke

More Adventures in the Room of Skulls

I was able to rescue Sigyn from the clutches of that murderous deer.  Horrible creatures, deer, really.  I prefer to think of them as merely the larval stage of roast venison.

There are more skulls here, and they are drawing a lot of attention.  The human female and her minions are showing them off to anyone who wanders by.

Sigyn is investigating the pronounced sagittal crest on this opossum.

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The human female says that is where all the jaw muscles are attached.  It certainly looks capable of eating anything it finds.  Opossums are strange creatures–tails like rats, huge rafs of babies which they tote about in pouches or on their backs, fur that always looks like they’ve been washed in the washer on the wrong cycle, and a predilection for rummaging about in compost heaps.

I am more impressed by the dentition of this male vervet monkey.

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This fellow looks quite up to the task of perforating anyone who tried to put him in a funny outfit or make him do silly tricks.  And the overall effect is of a toothy little human.

Great Frigga’s hairpins!  Look who has turned up!  Marty, that goggle-eyed menace, has dropped by to ogle the chicken skull.

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I don’t want to think about what Marty’s skull might look like.  Not much room for a brain, that’s for certain.

Oh, and here is Fisi, trying to sneak in a nibble on the oppossum.

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Shoo!  Bad hyena!  No biscuit!

Sweet Tony Stark on the half shell!  What sort of alien mutant nightmare beast does this one come from?!

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Don’t get too close, Sigyn.  I don’t trust this thing at all.

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poke, poke, poke.

No sirree. I do not trust this thing at all, at all.  Nor can I figure out its modus operandi.  No proper teeth to speak of, but what about these long pincer-like things up front?  What IS it?  Where does it live?  What does it eat?  What does the rest of it look like??

Oh, I am going to have bad dreams and flashbacks about this one, I can tell you.

(Reads label.)  Huh.  I never, ever would have guessed.  Log your guesses in the comments, folks, and we’ll see if anyone comes close.

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みんなでランチをしましょう, Part I: Acquiring Comestibles

The humans have had to run to the Big City to the West for some churchy event or other.  Sigyn was excited, whatever it was.  I didn’t want to know–I’ve just tagged along to see that Sigyn comes to no harm.  At any rate, the humans dragged a few friends along, the churchy event is over, and one of the friends has produced yet another friend, and  now suddenly I find myself in a very odd restaurant, squeezed into a booth with three people I don’t know and two people I only tolerate, contemplating some very peculiar lunch options.

The whole place is very highly mechanized.  A conveyor belt of sorts snakes all around the establishment, laden with small plates of tidbits, mostly of the raw fish variety.

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A plate with a placard announces each new set of arrivals.  One simply reaches out and takes whatever plate one wishes as it trundles by.  The computer by each table registers what has been selected.  Very clever, these Midgardians!

No, Sigyn, you may not ride the belt just to see where it goes.

The human female has selected some round, seedy…things.

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There were three in the bowl, but the human female has already inhaled one of them.  That leaves two, Sigyn, one for each of us. (poke, poke, poke) Now I remember!  They’re filled with sweet and beany goo, and we like them!

It’s not the warmest day outside, so we have ordered some hot ramen soup from the table’s computer menu.  It arrived on a separate little swift conveyor and stopped neatly at the table.  No soup on the main conveyor, because someone else might take it.  Would people really do that?   Take someone else’s food?  Well, I would, but that’s how I work.

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Chicken, egg, onion, noodles, broth.  If it is true what they say, that fat= flavor, it is probably going to be delicious!

We still have room for….Dumplings!

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Dumplings are always a good idea.   This sushi “donut”, on the other hand…

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…can call itself dessert all it likes.  It’s still raw fish.  I think some of it is salmon, which means I should definitely see that the human female has some.  I want to see that funny, itchy rash it gives her that I’ve heard so much about.

Come on, just one little bite?

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Not All Bunnies and Flowers, Part III: An Untimely and Gruesome Carnage

Do you recall the All Hallows pumpkin?  The one that overstayed its welcome?  Back in December, I predicted that the human female was going to put a Santa hat on it and make it suffice for yet another holiday.

Well, as of the Eater Bunny festival, the stupid thing was still sitting on the front stoop.

The human female brought it into the kitchen and gave it a good scrub.

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I was appalled!  Surely she wasn’t going to eat it?!  I mean, technically a pumpkin is a squash and is theoretically edible, but this superannuated pepo had essentially become a family member.

She whacked it open, revealing all its stringy innards.

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Sigyn was quite distressed at its demise.

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(poke poke poke)  It looked a little dry, and one of the seeds had sprouted.  I was very interested at this point, to see if anyone was actually going to eat this mess.

The poor thing was stripped of its skin and cut into chunks.

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A bit of steaming time in the microwave, a dab of butter, and a little maple sugar, and the All-Hallows-Yule-Eater Bunny Festival pumpkin was served forth.

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My sweetie couldn’t bear to have any.

Sigyn, I’m sorry to tell you that your cucurbitaceous friend was dee-licious.

Fetching the Family, Part I: A Bite of Lunch

The human female’s mother (whom I very much like) and sister (whom I tolerate–she’s too much like the human female) are coming for a visit.  This may be a good thing ( the mother cooks and is very kind), or it may be a disaster—there is sure to be more giggling than I can reasonably be expected to endure.  I suppose I can always go to an inn if the silliness becomes too much.

They are both flying into the Big City to the West, so we have to go fetch them.  It would be a long-but-pleasant drive if not for the human female’s tendency to moo at cows as we pass and point out every wildflower on the roadside.  Are we there yet?

(Later.)  We are now in the Big City to the West.  We have a bit of time before the guests will touch down at the airport, so we’ve decided to get some lunch.  Ever ones for something new, the humans have selected an Asian cafe in a strip mall somewhere.

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A quick glance shows Korean, Japanese, Thai, and “British-inspired” dishes, and I’m fairly certain “haus” is German and “potage” is French.  No telling WHAT any of these things tastes like.

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Sigyn is in the mood for fries of some kind but can’t decide between sweet potato fries and tater tots covered in Korean beef and kimchi.  You’ve tried kimchi before, love, and not liked it overmuch. Try the sweet potatoes.

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I wasn’t aware that a) Koreans had wings and b) it was legal to sell body parts for consumption!

We have played it safe, eschewing various body parts.  Instead, we have ordered a bowl of sticky rice with Korean barbecue, pickled carrots, cucumbers, and purple cabbage.

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Poke, poke, poke.  Sniff.  Seems innocuous enough.

<Snarf!>

That was surprisingly tasty.  And because I’m a helpful sort of fellow, I offered the human female a bite.

Now she can go breathe garlic all over her family.

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In India, They Just Call It “Food”

The humans are trying a new restaurant tonight.  Well, it isn’t actually new.  It has been here for a number of years.  They just haven’t gotten up off their fundaments to give it a try, despite the fact that they both like Indian cuisine.  Sigyn and I are tagging along.  We haven’t had any good Indian food since London.

You must forgive the photos–the lighting is low and the human female’s phone thinks this is the cue to make everything purple.

The meal is starting in the usual manner, with flat, breaky things.

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Sigyn and I are old pros at these.  There should be sauces–

And here they are!  I like the hot one.  Sigyn, of course, is going straight for the sweet one.

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The humans have ordered fried pillows.  Why would you do that?

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Oh.  I have been informed that these pillows are full of spicy potatoes and peas, and not polyester fiberfill.  The lack of  a “this notice not to be removed except by the consumer” tag should have tipped me off.

The entrees are here.  The female, being both boring and predictable, has ordered chicken tikka.  Woman, you DO know that’s not actually an Indian dish, right?

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Perhaps the male will have something a little more interesting.  Ah.  Lamb biryani.  That’s a bit better.  And if you don’t want lamb, Sigyn, you can always fill up on naan.

(later)  We have come to the “steaming towel” portion of the evening.

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(poke, poke, poke)  Nice and hot.  All meals should end in this fashion!  When I become sole ruler of Midgard, I shall see that they do!

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Sadly, Not Actually Banished…

It’s still hotter than Muspelheim outdoors, the humans are working hard and often get out of the office late, and neither of them feels like cooking.  It’s no surprise then, that “out” is often on the menu.  With the students gone now, between semesters, it’s a good time to try one of the new eateries in town.  I am enthusiastic, because I overheard the female utter the words, “Ban me.”  I have good hopes that the proprietors will take one look at her ugly haircut, her unfortunate visage, and her table “manners” and I’ll get to see them toss her out of their establishment.

It’s a smallish cafe with a limited menu.  Sandwiches feature prominently.  The human male has chosen one that seems to involve meatballs.

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Poke, poke, poke.  Not sure what the green stuff is.

Sigyn says the female’s has “lemongrassy beef, pickled veggies, and ‘nummy’  pâté .”

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That sounds…odd, but the bread is good.  Nice and crusty.

This place is big on cold drinks, too, which is almost more important than food this time of year.   The human female has selected a pineapple slushie.

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The male has a mango smoothie.  Not sure why the lid says “tea time”…

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Some of the other drinks have what looks like a good handful of little balls in the bottom.  Tiny grapes?  Bubblegum?  Ball bearing tea?  I have no idea.  I don’t trust it.

Well, the humans and Sigyn seem to be enjoying the food, but this has been a bust for me.  No one has made any move to eject the human female.

One final note:  the decor here is minimal.  A colorful blackboard wall.  A plant or two.  An old-timey lantern.  I’ve seen enough.  Come on, Sigyn, let’s g—

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Sigh.  Hang on, sweetie, Loki’s coming.  And then let’s leave, before we ALL get thrown out.

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Loki Takes New York, Day 7: The Human Female Has Gone Walkabout

The human male’s knee is bothering him even more today, because he didn’t take it as easy as he should yesterday.  The human female, who I suspect has NO nurturing instincts whatsoever, rather than stay at the hotel to take care of him, has gotten it into her head to explore some of the outer reaches of the city on her own.  Apparently she wants to look at places in some book she read.

As hare-brained as that notion is, I actually like this plan.  Divide and conquer.  If I tag along, I can annoy her without the human male interfering.  And maybe I can get her good and lost.  That would be fun!

So here we are, on the 7 train headed for one of the eastern bouroughs.  Sign has joined us because she heard the female talking about a garden.  “Garden” is the magic Sigyn word.  It works even better than “please.”

We have arrived.  But where are we?  Mortal, are you sure we are in the right city?  And not in some foreign country?  I can’t read any of the signs!  (Well, all right.  That one down there says, “pharmacy,” but what about the others?!)

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There are a number of fruit sellers, and on this blazing hot day, their succulent wares are quite tempting, but again, I can’t read what anything is.  Those look like watermelons, but who knows what’s inside?

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I think the human really may be lost.  She has been standing on the street for a quarter of an hour now, alternately checking the map on her phone, the file of landmarks on her phone, and the “you are here” signpost on the sidewalk.  (Of course, it doesn’t help that I magicked the sign on the post so that it has north at the bottom.)  It’s gonna take her a while to figure it all out.

Rats and hurrah!   She has discovered my little trick and correctly oriented herself (boo!), but she has achieved her destination and Sigyn is happy.

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This place is rather pretty for a site that used to be an ash and slag heap.  You see what can be done with a little effort, mortal?  This should fire you up and go home and do something with that disgrace you call a “garden.”

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There is a quaint little bridge over a tiny waterfall.  It feels very good to be in the shade after traipsing about and riding the subway all day.

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The calendar is suspended somewhere between spring and summer.  Sigyn calls this “spiraea-dangling season.”

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And if you can’t find spiraea, fringe-tree will do.

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I cannot decide which is more photogenic, this pale-flowered sweet shrub…

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… or my beloved Sigyn.

Sigyn is wishing that peonies would grow back in Texas.

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Sorry, beloved, there are some things even my magic cannot achieve.

We might be able to do something about roses, though.  This is an inspiring collection.

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Well, how rude!  Some group of wealthy mortals has rented out a good portion of this garden for a private party!  The temporary “no entry” signs are almost as annoying as their loud rap “music.”  For depriving my sweetie of the opportunity to enjoy the entirety of this place, I think they will now find that the wedding cake is actually frosted styrofoam and the punch has salt instead of sugar

(later)  After much walking and more time spent on the subway (which is not actually subterranean this far from city center) and some more walking, we have now reached one of the other places the human female has read about.

The International Night Market springs up each Saturday evening like a toadstool after rain.

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No one gets in ahead of official opening time when this gorgon is on guard duty!

At last it is time to wander in.  Various morsels and concoctions are filling the air with delicious aromas.  We could, if we chose, dine on octopus balls or shark sandwiches.

Sigyn has elected to try this arepa instead, apparently because she thinks the word is fun to say.  “Arepa.”  “Arrepa.”  “Arrrrepa!”   Good for r-rolling practice, if nothing else.

Sigyn, what even is this?!  poke, poke, poke.  I don’t trust it. 

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(nibble.)  Ah.  It is a corn griddle cake of some sort, topped with a crumbly, tangy cheese.  Not bad, but not very satisfying if one has a craving for meat.  I think I saw a grilled steak booth in the last row…  I shall return.

We have now looked at all the food booths and browsed in the wares that are for sale.  We are hot, tired, and ready for a cool shower.  Sigyn, let us teleport back to the inn and leave the human female to slog her way back to the train station, endure a lengthy cross-town ride, and then slog from the train station back to the room.

Then, when she does some of the accumulated laundry in the inn’s washroom, I’ll see to it that the dryer stops after five minutes and eats up aaaall her quarters…

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