The delightful explorer Madame Bishop sent me an 'oddity', a mini-version of a festival mask for Phi Ta Khon. It's quite a fearsome mask. Bit of rabbit, bit of hawk, bit of shark, a lot of unsettling. In the card, Madame Bishop notes that the shop had these displayed on Ken and Barbie dolls. Heh. I have no Barbies, but I do have the Masterchief, who has kindly volunteered to model.
I think he looks quite fetching.
There was also a bottle opener decorated with what look like Chinese opera masks. It is just as alarming to look at. I may never get to open a bottle of fun with it, because the opener will look at me every time I go to use it.
Second box contained an uncorrected proof of Jeff VanderMeer's Finch, which I had the honour of reading as manuscript
There was also a wrapped thingy, with a card taped to it. On the back of the envelope was a request to document my reaction. At which point I put everything down, didn't even open the card and went off to do all my chores. Sounded far too distracting.
Now I'm opening it...
Oh holy hell!
LOOK AT THIS
Waitwaitwaitwaitwait. Ages ago. Like, ages ago. I flippantly requested a capybara for my birthday. I wasn't really expecting a capybara, because Australia has strict quarantine laws, and I have nowhere for a capybara to live. But when requesting presents you're never going to receive, you might as well do it properly.
Apparently this infected Jeff, 'cause he had a capybara dream, started RPing a capybara on a certain-social-networking-site-that-looks-like-a-cubicle-farm, and the internet coughed up a capybara to talk to him, who he then went on to interview. (ZOMFG, teh kewt.)
But, I did not receive a capybara for my birthday.
Got the next best thing though!
And this is my head asploding with the combined pressure of Oarsum Unsettling and Mighty Cute.
Thank you, Madame Bishop! Thank you, VanderMeer Inc! Thank you, Caplin Rous!