Posts Tagged ‘alpaca’

Introducing Jorge

I realized I never introduced you guys to Jorge.

My sister likes to think she’s funny, so for my birthday (back in October), she got me a llama (or possibly an alpaca?) cookie jar.

My first thought was “What the heck am I going to do with this?”

But then I embraced the madness and named him Jorge.

This is Jorge.


The small, mobile ones adore Jorge and they keep him well-stocked with cookies. (And then I eat the cookies.)

My sister has, of course, been quite pleased by Jorge’s new place in our lives.

Anyway. Here’s Jorge. We may be seeing more of him in the future.

Common writing mistakes on Thursday. We’ll be talking about point of view issues. Ta, squiders!

A Landsquid Thanksgiving

Landsquid called his friend Turtleduck on the phone. “Come over,” he said. “I’ve learned about this great holiday that some people celebrate, where you get together with those you love, eat a shared meal, and go over what you’re thankful for. Food’s at 5. See you then? I’ve got to call the Alpaca still.”

It was a merry group that convened later that day. The Alpaca had knitted sweaters for the lot of them, which, though hideous, everyone still wore with good cheer. The self-folding plesiosaur had brought drinks, and the alligator in the tree entertained them all with stories from his perch on top of the bookcase.

Finally, it was time to eat. Everyone settled down as Landsquid brought in dish after dish: mashed potatoes, stuffing, green bean casserole, and to top it all off…

“…is that a giant duck?” Turtleduck asked.

“Well, no,” Landsquid said. “Actually, it’s…”

“But it’s some kind of bird! You’re trying to serve me bird!” And she burst into tears.

Poor Turtleduck

The others stared at Landsquid, judgment written on their faces. “No!” he said. He placed the plate down on the table and crossed over to Turtleduck, patting the top of her shell awkwardly. “I would never do that–surely you know that, Turtleduck.”

She peered out from between her feathers, caught sight of the plate again, and wailed anew.

“Let me explain, please!” Landsquid waited until Turtleduck quieted. “You see, it’s all part of the tradition. Birds are fantastic, everyone knows it, so to celebrate them as part of the general thanksgiving, a giant effigy is made of them. It’s called a tofukey. It’s made of tofu.”

“Oh.” Turtleduck dried her tears on one wing. “Why doesn’t it have a head, then?”

They all regarded the tofukey solemnly. “I must have used a bad template,” Landsquid said finally. “I’ll find a different one for next year. Now, shall we eat?”

And so they did.

The Wisdom of the Future Dinosaur

Landsquid was tentacle-deep in flour–it was Thursday, his weekly baking day–when his doorbell rang.

Most of his friends knew not to disturb him while baking was in progress, so it was either a stranger, or it was important. He didn’t bother de-flouring before tromping across his house to the front door.

It was Turtleduck. Landsquid looked down at her. A pile of flour gathered on the doorstep.

“Have you heard?” she said.

“Heard what?”

Turtleduck twisted her head one way, then the other. She leaned in. Landsquid was forced to lean in as well. “They say,” she whispered, “that the Alpaca is getting out soon.”

Landsquid had not seen his neighbor and arch-nemesis since the scone/knitting incident, as he called it in his head. How long had he been in his house now, alone except for his knitting and the ceiling turtles? What had happened in that time? What had happened to the poor ceiling turtles? Landsquid had a momentary terrible image of the Alpaca roasting them over open flame. Or knitting them into a sweater from which they never escaped.

“Is that a good idea?” he said.

Turtleduck shook her head so violently she almost overbalanced from the action. “What should we do?”

Landsquid rubbed one head fin before he remembered the flour. What should they do? They could go visit the Alpaca, he guessed, though the last time had been bad enough. Who knew what horrors lurked next door now? “Maybe we should go see the Future Dinosaur,” he said finally.

They went inside. While Landsquid de-floured, Turtleduck managed to roll several muffins into a basket as an offering for the Future Dinosaur. Landsquid had never personally seen the Future Dinosaur before, but it was said that she was infinitely wise, being a product of both the past, and the future.

Landsquid locked his house on the way out, just in case the Alpaca got out before he returned. The last thing he needed was to be ambushed by a probably insane arch-nemesis, possibly wielding scarves and gloves. Then he and Turtleduck walked down to the bus stop, caught the number 5, and took it all the way downtown.

Mmm, baked goods.

The Future Dinosaur was usually found in a small out-building on the grounds of the city/county municipal building. Landsquid and Turtleduck left their names with a nervous platypus out front and sat down under a tree to wait to be called. Apart from the basket of muffins, Landsquid had also brought some Cheez-Its and cocoa in a thermos.

Though no one else came or went, it was half an hour before the platypus called them. Landsquid steeled himself outside the door. Hopefully the Future Dinosaur would have some advice for them, or would be able to help in some manner. Otherwise, this was going to be a waste of perfectly good muffins.

The platypus pushed the door open deliberately slowly. It was dark inside. Landsquid went in first, Turtleduck following less enthusiastically. Once inside, the door was shut behind them, and a low glow appeared, backlighting a table and whomever sat at it. The Future Dinosaur, if that’s who it was, was smaller than Landsquid had expected.

“Oh, great Future Dinosaur,” he said. “We have a problem that we desire your help with. Please accept these muffins as an offering of our sincerity.” Hopefully that sounded okay. Landsquid wished he’d looked up Future Dinosaur etiquette before, but there had never really been a reason to. He shuffled over to the table–the glow was increasing–and deposited the basket.

Up close, the Future Dinosaur was small. And very feathery.

“Cluck CLUCK,” said the Future Dinosaur.

Landsquid glanced at Turtleduck. Was that an invitation to continue? Landsquid explained the situation with the Alpaca. The Future Dinosaur was mostly quiet throughout, though she offered an encouraging “Cluck!” whenever Landsquid paused.

“What do you think?” Landsquid concluded finally.

The Future Dinosaur was silent for a moment, staring at the basket of muffins. Then she jumped on the table with a flap of her wings, knocked the basket over, and declared, “CluckcluckcluckCLUCK bawk cluckcluck,” and pecked the table four times.

Then she snagged a muffin and, with a ruffle of her feathers, disappeared.

Later, on the bus ride home, Landsquid mulled over the Future Dinosaur’s cryptic message while Turtleduck chattered on about how awesome the Future Dinosaur had been, and what an honor it had been to be in her presence, and how wise she had been about everything. Despite the wisdom of the message the Future Dinosaur had given him, he did not seem to be smart enough to be able to decipher it.

What would he do when he got home?

Well, maybe it would be obvious. Landsquid could only hope.

Alpaca Interlude

I hate to do this to you guys, but I’m in a rough spot on my edit (whhhhhyyyyyy) and I need to focus on that. So today, you get alpaca.

Specifically, you get these alpaca:



So apparently these are a thing. They’re called Alpacasso (or Alpakasso) and, of course, they originated in Japan, and beyond that I don’t know anything about them but they are everywhere and they are adorable and they are obviously an evil alpaca plot to infiltrate our homes and our hearts so they can continue their bid for world domination.

So be strong, Squiders. Don’t let their little fuzzy smiles distract you from the truth. Alpaca are little, fluffy bundles of evil. They will steal your hats. They will eat your cake. They may knit you scarves while leering at you in a disturbing manner. Beware.

(Seriously, though, as far as I can tell it’s just a line of toys. You can purchase a variety of different colors, sizes, shapes, etc., here.)

Right, my edit and frustration beckons. Onward!

Merry Christmas!

I hope, if you celebrate Christmas, that you have a lovely day full of love, laughter, and joy. If you don’t celebrate Christmas, I hope you have a lovely Tuesday, which is my favorite day of the week.Christmas with the Landsquid and the Alpaca(I’d look a little concerned if I were the Landsquid too.)

Of Sulking Alpacas and Scones

Landsquid left his house through the front door, carrying a basket of freshly made chocolate chip scones (which are the best kind) over one tentacle. He steeled himself, then quickly hurried down his front walkway, around the fence, and up to his neighbor and arch-nemesis Alpaca’s front door. He paused for a moment, listening, but there was no movement.

Landsquid hadn’t seen or heard from the Alpaca since he had attempted to take over the blog at the beginning of June. He’d been on house arrest ever since. Oh, Landsquid had been mad at first. There’d been the whole incident with being locked in the Alpaca’s basement with the ceiling turtles. FOR A WEEK. But at least he’d had some cocoa and Cheez-Its, and the ceiling turtles weren’t too bad, as long as you ignored them trying to gnaw on your head fins.

Landsquid paused for a moment to wonder what had happened to the ceiling turtles. Were they still in the basement? Had they escaped and made their way out into the wide world to find someone else’s head to drop on, or had they infiltrated the main part of the house, where the Alpaca was forced to stay?

That could be why Landsquid hadn’t seen him in a while. Hm.

Although, if the Alpaca was dealing with a ceiling turtle infestation, he’d been much too quiet about it. Landsquid had gotten used to the loud yelling that often drifted over the fence at even the most benign of times. But now, he’d been quiet for months. Landsquid was worried. It’d taken years to build up their relationship to the proper level of arch-nemesis-ness.

Before he could chicken out, Landsquid straightened his basket of scones and knocked soundly on the front door. At first, there was nothing, but then a long, strange dragging noise, just barely audible, started towards the door. It did not sound like the Alpaca at all. Landsquid clutched his basket tighter and debated fleeing. What was that noise, all slithery and light? He had horrible visions of some sort of forgotten creature, long resting in some deep, dark place, burrowing its way to the surface.

That could also explain why he hadn’t seen any ceiling turtles either. They’d be the first–and possibly the last–line of defense.

The door opened. Landsquid drew back, ready to flee if necessary, but it was an alpaca, wearing a ridiculously long afghan. Upon closer inspection, it was the Alpaca, though his usual mustache and monocle were nowhere to be seen. Instead, along with the afghan, he was wearing some sort of bonnet, and he had a pleasant smile on his face.

“Uh,” said Landsquid, thoroughly baffled. “How are you holding…up?”

“Oh, fine, fine,” said the Alpaca. “I’ve taken up knitting, you see. Very calming. Cheap–well, for me, anyway–too. Don’t have to leave the house, even if I could!”

Around the Alpaca’s fluffiness, Landsquid could see what looked like several ceiling turtles, crawling around on the floor, of all places, wearing turtle-shaped sweaters and booties.

“You should come in,” the Alpaca continued. “I’ve just got some new yarn spun. It’s a lovely shade of light yellow. It’d really bring out your eyes.” He kind of leered as he spoke. And not the typical ‘I am contemplating great evil’ leer that Landsquid was accustomed to, but more of a ‘I have been around yarn and ceiling turtles for too long and would like to knit you into a full-body stocking from which you will never escape, and then I shall feed you bon-bons and talk to you as if you weren’t really there’ sort of leer.

“Oh, no,” said Landsquid. “I’m afraid I can’t now. I’ve got to…wash my hair. But I brought you these scones, as, you know, sort of a ‘Don’t worry about trying to conquer my livelihood and feed me to ceiling turtles’ thing, you know.” He thrust the basket at the Alpaca. “Hope you like them. But I must be going I’m afraid. Yes, yes, well, I’ll see you later.”

He backpeddled up the walk and back towards his own house. As he went, he thought he might have heard the Alpaca whisper, “Yes, yes, you will.”

Alpaca Overlord Week: Introducing Population Control

My dear minions, it has come to my attention that there are a ridiculous amount of you out there. An unsustainable amount, if you will.

Since it is my duty now to care for you, I have decided to introduce a measure of population control. Oh, don’t worry, there won’t be forced sterilization or anything like that – where’s the fun?

Instead, each of you shall be sheared (and we’ll see how YOU like it) and then you will be randomly paired against one of your fellow human beings in a death cage match, which will be televised for my llamas. And then, the winner of said match will be fed to crocodiles.

Mmmm, it will be glorious. The carnage. The blood.

If you’re lucky, you’ll be paired off against an infant, or possibly your own grandmother. And if you lose to your grandmother, well, you deserve your fate. (Your grandmother, however, may be worthy of placement within my army).

And then, when I tire of that I – hey! How’d you get in here? No! Guards! GUA-


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Let this be a lesson, Squiders – look through the front door before you open it. You never know what nefarious types may be lurking on the other side.

Luckily for everyone, it turns out that alpaca are not very big. And llamas are kind of dumb. And none of them have opposable thumbs, so I think the revolution was probably doomed from the onset.

But back to business as usual. Just a note – we’ll be moving from a MWF posting schedule to a T/Th posting schedule for the summer, starting the week of June 18th. Don’t be confused! We’ll probably go back again, come September, unless we all decide that we like the other schedule better.

Secondly, a moment of silence please for Ray Bradbury, who was a master of speculative fiction and a darn nice man to boot. I saw him a few times at San Diego Comic-con and it was always a pleasure to hear him speak. He will be missed.

Alpaca Overlord Week: My Rise to Power

Today, I will tell you, my minions, of how I overcame Kit and her accursed landsquid to rise above the odds, to conquer trials and tribulations, and to inspire you with feelings of my greatness.

And to warn you that if you ever attempt anything similar, I shall crush you underneath my hooves and destroy everything and everyone you have ever loved.

Remember: top-secret and highly-trained genetically-engineered llama spies. EVERYWHERE. Even, possibly, your cat. I will know what you’re thinking possibly even before you yourself know. SO BEWARE.

I started with the Landsquid. Oh, he thought he was so smart, sticking ceiling turtles over my fence and inviting me over to watch sporting events and drink cocoa and occasionally foiling my schemes to steal all the top hats. Thought I’d never realize what he was up to. WELL. It was easy enough to suggest we watch the game at my house instead, and then, when he came over, I locked him in the basement with all those Sky Shark-forsaken ceiling turtles.

When I close my eyes, I can still hear his cries. Delightful.

Kit was a bit harder since I am, after all, a fictional character, but luckily I’ve seen enough Star Trek the Next Generation to learn from one Professor James Moriarty on how to break the fourth wall and escape into a world one was never supposed to belong to. Bwhahahaha!

I’m sure she never suspected she’d have to contend with her own creations. That’s the only way I can explain her total lack of preparedness. After all, she created me, so one would hope she was usually more up to snuff in terms of international espionage and hostage situations.

And that, my dear peons, as they say, is that. By the by, I did not receive nearly as many tributes as I expected yesterday. You have one last chance and then – llamas.

Alpaca Overlord Week: How to Worship Your New Leader

Greetings, minions. It is I, your new overlord, the Alpaca. As is befitting my takeover of this blog (and shortly, the world), I have graciously put together this list of instructions so you may show your gratitude and awe in the most appropriate manner. Follow them, and you shall be rewarded. Disobey them, and the consequences shall be severe. Even now my network of carefully brainwashed and trained super llamas are infiltrating your every day life. You never know who could be one of them. It could be your grandmother. It could be your yoga instructor. Do not defy me.

1) There shall be no mention of my former rival.
Obviously, I have prevailed, and he does not deserve my respect. Obviously I am aware that the title of the blog remains the same. Something about passwords and firewalls and blah blah blah. I had my technician executed.

2) Everyone must learn the difference between an alpaca and a llama.
Alpaca are clearly superior, and I will not have our good name smeared by association with those callous louts.

3) No petting.
I bite.

4) All Cheez-Its are hereby banned.
Cocoa is allowed. And delicious.

5) Tribute shall be gathered on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
This leaves you free on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays to come here and read my wisdom, and leave properly adoring comments. Additional tribute will be accepted on Saturdays and Sundays but, at the moment, are not required. You may praise my mercifulness.

Actually, it turns out that writing out a list of instructions is all a bit tedious. I grow bored, and so I leave you with this, my peons: worship me, adore me, and do not betray me, and you will be, if not rewarded, not punished. Do what you will to ensure your safety. Further instruction and wisdom will follow. I DO expect tributes tomorrow, so do not be late.

Public Service Announcement

I’m sure you’ve all realized that yesterday’s post is a little late. There’s a very good reason for this. You see, after much thought and deliberation, I have decided to turn over control of this blog to the Alpaca and change its name to–



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Greetings, it is I, your new Alpaca Overlord. What Kit was trying to say is that, in her professional opinion, this blog needs a new direction. And I will give you that new direction, even if I must crush it into your puny skulls. AND YOU WILL LIKE IT.

So, please, return on Monday for our new programming. Until then, please enjoy this lovely piece of propaganda. Even young alpaca can be fearsome. You would do well to remember that.

(And if you find you still have time after that, I guess it won’t hurt to tell you that Kit has a new short story up at Turtleduck Press. Though I must say that I do not approve of the name. THEY WILL BE NEXT.)