House Dembski-Bowden recently got back from a trip to Portugal, which was a cross between beautiful, serene, a hellish skullfuck of being without decent wi-fi, and the easily imaginable chaos of a toddler in the middle of his toilet training.
D’you want some photos?
Tough shit. Here are some photos.
Firstly, GO SUNS. Let’s just get that out of the way.
Here’s a sea wall on a beach, to defend against mermaids. Portugal’s capital is called “Lisbon”, which translates as “Besieged by clans of fish-people” in Old English.
If you look closely along Portuguese beaches you can find mermaid bones among the rocky coastal defences. These can be sold to the government for cash money.
This is an authentic picture of a human child looking ardently around the nearby landscape for the best spot to throw his next fucking tantrum.
Cool sculptures line the road in the Sintra valley. Top scientists suspect this one is a metaphor.
After the turbulent Fin Wars, the people of Portugal soon took to building their castles on top of mountains, not just to avoid the weaponized shrieks of the mermaid-queens, but also because it looked totally rad.
This is a ceiling. Man, whoever owned this palace sure liked magpies.
I’m smiling, but right after this photo I said “Stop drumming on my head, you little cunt.”
I love you, Katie, but this photo is some wildly pretentious bullshit.
Then we saw this little tower-castle-thing, which was great.
It even had a tiny scale model of itself, which I wanted to steal and use as 40K scenery. I didn’t in the end, not because I’m a coward but because it was made from some kind of supernaturally dense stone that no mortal muscles could lift. That’s why.
A Renaissance statue commemorating the great art of White People Dancing.
Alexander Dembski-Bowden, sponsored by pop culture.
Then we went to an aquarium, or an oceanarium, or whatever.
Don’t look at me, you ugly bastard. YOU KILLED STEVE IRWIN.
Yeah, that’s right. You better run.
Shakes pauses for a brief prayer to some imaginary fish pantheon. No doubt thanking them for the teddy octopus we bought him, which he loudly and publicly decided to name… Mr. Octopussy.
“Is that Dory?” Shakes asked 800 times. “Is that Dory? Is that Nemo? Where’s Dory? Is Nemo here?”
Yes, Dory was there. I wonder how many aquarium staff worldwide curse that Goddamn movie. How often do they hear kids banging on about it?
Nemo was similarly present.
Ugh. This hideous bastard again.
This is the smuggest, most self-satisfied frog I’ve ever seen. He knows things, this guy.
I saw this enterprising little fellow just stuck on the glass, like a greasy green Tic-Tac, and I sort of wanted to eat him.
This is a puffin.
And this is a puffin’s anus. Did you know that “puffin” in Norwegian is “lundefugl”? Isn’t that the greatest word ever?
This room, in one of the palaces, was historically known as the Grossly Overcompensating For Something chamber.
“Yeah, no, let’s make a chandelier out of moose horns and deer heads. That won’t look tacky as shit at all.”
EVEN THE CHAIRS, PEOPLE. EVEN THE CHAIRS.
Look how tired this owl is.
I don’t know what Rihanna is doing here.
Here’s Shakes at the bottom of the Sintra Initiation Well, where the Knights Templar used to do Templarish things, like rob people and blame the Jews. I told Shakes there were goblins down in these tunnels, and when I tried to walk away alone he started crying, scared that “the bad guy goblins” would “get me”.
I didn’t spit down on those people, I promise.
Have you guys watched Daredevil, yet? How awesome is the Kingpin in it!? I love the way they’ve portrayed him with all that power stemming from deeper insecurities, like a monarch laid bare. Really great show.
The library at the Mafra National Palace was absolutely breathtaking, in the most literal way. Very humbling. Very awesome.
So naturally I imagined Space Marines on all the balconies shooting each other, because I bet the Siege of Terra looked a little like that.
And last of all:
[Sadly eats ice cream]
Katie took all of these pics. Well, except the Rihanna ones. I took those.