Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Beware the Kraken

It is truly wonderful to live by the sea; warm sunshine, clear winter skies, and 'the big blue' littered with the assorted debris from a smashed up fishing vessel.

Yes, debris.

This morning I was given the task of sorting through the soggy mess with a pair of lurid yellow protective gloves. I don't know the first thing about boats but somehow I was supposed to keep a weather eye out for anything un-boat-y.

Now normally The Agency wouldn't have anything to do with boating accidents, but one of the rescued sailors, in his delusional hypothermic state, apparently started blubbing on about a giant octopus.

Yeah, we deal with weirder shit than that. Giant octopus, no problems. We'll be back to the office in time for smoko.

So there I was stuck on the shore with my ridiculous gloves while the boys got to take out our boat to do some serious sonar. If anyone gets eaten by the giant squid, please let it be Agent Bayne, I thought.

I got busy and divided the pile of debris up into categories;
  • Splintered Wood, Fibreglass & Plastic
  • Twisted Metal
  • Tech (radio equipment, GPS etc)
  • Fishing Gear
  • Biological Material
  • Miscellaneous
A while later, the boys came back with a big fat pile of nothing from the sonar readings. I, on the other hand had a very interesting collection of biological material; a large tooth that looked a little like the tusk of an elephant, and the end of a bloody big tentacle. It totally reeked, and I don't think I'll be able to hit the seafood buffet for a while. One thing's for sure though, that's no giant squid - it's a Kraken.

10:43AM - Just in time for Smoko
The Desk of Marmalade McWraith

I pulled up the file (G:\Research & Surveillance\Mythical Creatures\Kraken) and passed what little info we had to the Director who will decide on what is to be done next. Not a lot can be done though until we get another sighting. If we get another sighting.

Interestingly though, I found a recent article in Mythical Creatures Magazine where the Kraken had made it to the Pet of the Month Column. An amusing read. Enjoy.


EDIT: Apologies - Had to delete the article due to copyright violation. Oops..

Picture: A young Kraken playing with a 19th century sailing ship.

Monday, August 4, 2008

The Great Tea Spree

You might say that tea is my new obsession..

It all started at a staff meeting a few weeks ago. The boardroom was full, save for one empty chair across the table from me.

About five minutes into the meeting, one of our Time Agents sauntered in with a cup of tea and offered some lame excuse to the Director, who had temporarily ceased his monologue about occupational health and safety.

"Sorry Sir, just got back from France, 1791. Some fool just tried to save Marie Antoinnette and made a hell of a mess of it."

He sat down opposite me and the Director picked up his speech where he left off. But it got me pondering a paradox; why are Time Agents always late for staff meetings? They're Time Agents and shouldn't be late for anything!

And why are they allowed to get away with it? If I strolled into a staff meeting five minutes late, I'd be sent to clean out the containment unit with a toothbrush.

The truth is though, Time Agents are part of the elite few. They are above the rules and they just have to be different to everyone else. They dress differently, they act differently and they have a high falutin attitude towards food and drink. For example, they always drink tea. Never once have I ever seen one drink anything else. It's like they consider coffee to be the drug of the uncivilised plebian masses.

Our tardy Time Agent must have seen me staring at his cup of tea during the meeting, because afterwards when I headed back to my desk, there was a little box there with a note. The writing was quite fancy for a bloke and the ink was still slightly wet. Time Agents are obviously too cool to use a ballpoint.

Rules is rules though. Time Agents just can't go bringing stuff back or else things could get very complicated. I should have reported it, or at least destroyed it. But it's funny how contraband is so delightfully attractive. Maybe just for once I'll break a rule, I thought slyly. What's the worst that could happen?

So I made a cup of tea, and I liked it. I liked it so much I drank the whole box of tea in 3 days. I haven't seen Mr Mace around to ask him for more, as he's probably off saving the world somewhere, but I did go down to the local supermarket to get some of the ordinary variety.

The entire Twinings range is now in my possession and it's my plan over the next week or so to try all of them and give them a rank of 1 to 12 depending on how much I like them.

Today I started with 3 and ranked them in this order;
  1. Irish Breakfast - A warm, full-bodied tea to be sure, to be sure
  2. Russian Caravan - Quite strong, with a slightly nutty flavour
  3. Prince of Wales - Not as strong as the top two but has more of an Asian influence
I now have an awful lot of tea. Perhaps I should have a competition and give some of it away. So if you want some tea you must comment on this post with a description of your favourite hot beverage. The winner will be randomly selected and will recieve a selection of tea, personally blessed by me and sent to you, wherever you might be in the world. Note that due to the high postage costs, unfortunately interdimensional aliens and those from parallel realities cannot be part of this competition.

So get posting! You could be a winner!

EDIT 13/8: Seriously, no one wants the tea?