1330

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gingerbread, gingerbread, ginger all the way

Here is my own gingerbread house recipe, made up entirely by myself two years ago. If anyone else claims to have made a similar one by the time this comic posts, I have a whole family of witnesses who can attest that I sent them this house in a Christmas package in the mail during December of 2011. (Yes, it can be sent in the mail without breaking, it is THAT AWESOME.)

And don’t pay me any royalties if you use this recipe. It’s my gift to you. I insist.

Solid Gingerbread Cookie House

Unlike most gingerbread houses, this house doesn’t fall apart as you try to set it up– and it looks a bit more like a real house, too. A log cabin, maybe.

Plus, it has more total gingerbread in it than those hollow houses. Yum.

house

Ingredients:

For Cookie Dough

6 cups flour

2 cups butter

2 cups light brown sugar

1 egg

1 tbsp baking soda

0.5 tsp salt

2 tsp vanilla extract

2 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp ground cloves

2 tbsp ground ginger

3 tbsp molasses

For Decorating:

3 cups powdered sugar

0.5 cup water

0.5 cup flour

Assorted small candies

Supplies

Microwave and oven

Measuring cups and measuring spoons

Large bowl and fork for mixing

Two large flat cookie sheets

Extra-light olive oil

Microwaveable bowl and fork to stir

Knife, and ruler to measure pieces

Toothpicks and butter knives for decorating

Small plate

Directions:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

Melt butter in microwave. Mix all cookie ingredients in a large bowl.

Flatten dough out on cookie sheets, about half an inch thick, after greasing the sheets with oil.

Cut into 14 rectangles. Each should be 4 inches long. Ten of them should be 3 inches wide each. Of the remaining four, two should be 1 inch wide, and two should be 0.5 inch wide. (Feel free to experiment with different sizes and quantities; the recipe makes more than you’ll need. Use any extra dough for gingerbread cookies.)

Bake for 10-12 minutes.

Meanwhile, mix the powdered sugar, flour and water into a paste to form the frosting.

When cookies are baked and cooled, stack eight of the 4 x 3″ rectangles horizontally in an even stack, on top of a plate, mortaring them together with the frosting. Then, continuing to use the frosting as mortar, add the 4 x 1″ rectangles, centered on top, followed by the 4 x 0.5″ rectangles, until the stack resembles a house with a pointed roof.

Mortar the two remaining 4 x 3″ rectangles on top to form both sides of the roof, resting on the ledges and leaning against each other at the peak.

Decorate the house with frosting and candy.

Aaaaand, speaking of things I made that you might like for Christmas… well, you know the drill! Get your books and Abby and Norma merchandise today!

(Want an extra-special present? Email me at humanalien at gmail dot com. For a small extra fee for the additional shipping, and a few days of extra transit time, I’ll personally SIGN your book or t-shirt.)

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1329

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sell your sole on ebay

The laws on this are very nuanced and open to interpretation, and vary by location as well. (I think a pair of shoes with half-missing soles lying on the street would fall under “abandoned property,” no matter how valuable the shoes were to begin with.)

Speaking of things that are worth money, we’re, like, one month from Christmas, and I’m sure you’ve got some friends and/or family weird enough to enjoy gifts of books and Abby and Norma merchandise!

(Want an extra-special present? Email me at humanalien at gmail dot com. For a small extra fee for the additional shipping, and a few days of extra transit time, I’ll personally SIGN your book or t-shirt.)

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1328

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I would totally have read the Dick and Jane books as a kid if this was the kind of thought experiment they posed

Technically, you could remove “Dick is a human” from the scenario without preventing the death, if Dick were some other creature to whom cyanide is lethal.

(I wonder if he’d survive if he were a robot. But then, would he be eating breakfast in the first place? Maybe his breakfast is whatever fuel he runs on. Mixing cyanide into that probably would kill him, or at least seriously damage him.)

By the way, I’ve made some new blog posts in which you may be interested.

Breathing in a Balloon: The economy when you’re thinking in pictures

The Second Mango, by Shira Glassman: A Book Review

Smartphone Software Review

Oh, and speaking of causes, one of the biggest causes of holiday stress is trying to do your gift shopping at the last minute, so order your books and Abby and Norma merchandise soon!

(Want an extra-special present? Email me at humanalien at gmail dot com. For a small extra fee for the additional shipping, and a few days of extra transit time, I’ll personally SIGN your book or t-shirt.)

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1327

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 writing this in September; hoping it'll be up on Netflix by the time this posts

Sometimes, it inspires Awww.

Speaking of awe-inspiring things, there are only 35 days left till Christmas, and even less till Thanksgivukkah… so get your books and Abby and Norma merchandise soon!

(Want an extra-special present? Email me at humanalien at gmail dot com. For a small extra fee for the additional shipping, and a few days of extra transit time, I’ll personally SIGN your book or t-shirt.)

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1326

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Y in this case stands for yammering yelling youngsters, I guess.

I like Abby’s arguments even better when she’s half asleep.

Speaking of family members who expect you to do stuff, there are only 36 shopping days left till Christmas! And if you celebrate Hannukah, you’ve got even less time, because this year it begins crazy early– coinciding with Thanksgiving!! (For you Doctor McNinja fans out there, this will be the ultimate Katannakah!)

But don’t despair, I have bizarre books and cool A&N merchandise for you to buy for holiday gifts! Don’t delay!

(Want an extra-special present? Email me at humanalien at gmail dot com. For a small extra fee for the additional shipping, and a few days of extra transit time, I’ll personally SIGN your book or t-shirt.)

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1325

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Karen should give the book a scathing hatchet-job of a review, just to see how her teacher reacts.

Abby gets her views about literary critics from reading Isaac Asimov’s humor books, which are actually pretty far off in regards to the truth. In my experience, most book reviews are quite complimentary, and most reviewers are also authors.

Speaking of authors, I’m one! And I write weird books and design crazy A&N merchandise for you to buy your friends for holiday gifts!

(Want an extra-special present? Email me at humanalien at gmail dot com. For a small extra fee for the additional shipping, and a few days of extra transit time, I’ll personally SIGN your book or t-shirt.)

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1324

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 your whole family is made of meat

I guess they reconciled their dispute after all. Abby and Norma are the ones who are truly indivisible.

Speaking of getting closer to your friends, one step in that direction is giving them presents, and some good presents include wildly creative books and attractive comic merchandise!

(Want an extra-special present? Email me at humanalien at gmail dot com. For a small extra fee for the additional shipping, and a few days of extra transit time, I’ll personally SIGN your book or t-shirt.)

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1323

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 Now you're making me unhappy! Stop it with the manipulating!

If you think about it, virtually all our interactions with other people are manipulative, if you define “manipulation” as “interacting with people with the goal of achieving a certain desired reaction from them.” We always have an idea of what we would like others to do, and we always try to say things that encourage them to do it. So in a sense we’re always trying to manipulate others, even if we’re doing it in a gentle way that leaves them largely free to do as they please.

What makes an action manipulative in a bad way? Is it the obliqueness and semi-dishonesty, like complaining about your problems in hopes that your friends will offer to help you, instead of just asking for help? (But this could also be seen as giving your friends more freedom: if you asked for help outright, and your friends didn’t want to give it, they would have to refuse you outright, which would be a lot harder emotionally than the option of just failing to pick up on your hints. I sometimes use the complaining-in-hopes-of-help strategy because if people are going to help me, I want it to come from their own genuine desire to help me… if they don’t really want to, and would just be doing it out of obligation, then I’d rather go without help.)

But then there are other forms of manipulation, like saying things to make your friends feel guilty or unworthy before asking for help, or giving them the idea that you’ll take some kind of revenge if they don’t help you. I can’t see any redeeming qualities in those.

Speaking of manipulation, I want you to buy your holiday presents from me! Books and Abby and Norma merchandise are still orderable for the holidays!

(Want an extra-special present? Email me at humanalien at gmail dot com. For a small extra fee for the additional shipping, and a few days of extra transit time, I’ll personally SIGN your book or t-shirt.)

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1322

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 This week did suck, but I had a great fall.

It’s hard to make a hump day joke that doesn’t involve camels or sex.

Speaking of days, it’s getting closer and closer to a day when society may very well expect you to give some presents, and speaking of silly puns, there are a lot of them contained in these very affordable and very giveable gifts, such as books and Abby and Norma merchandise!

(Want an extra-special present? Email me at humanalien at gmail dot com. For a small extra fee for the additional shipping, and a few days of extra transit time, I’ll personally SIGN your book or t-shirt.)

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