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Fire, our constant companion

Fire, our constant companion

Thu, 01/27/2011 - 15:28 by Ananth in response to combustifier

We got a new humidifier and it's totally a penguin that barfs mist. It's meant to be for kids (there's a whole line of different animals), but this is also a well-priced ultrasonic humidifier, which means a minimum of cleaning and noise. I guess I accidentally turned this into a commercial, but anyway - I recommend it if you need one. Moving on!

Inkmation is a company specializing in children's storybooks for the iPad. They're interactive, and you can read through them with your kids or the app will read the story out loud. Yuko and I are doing some work with them in the next year, and I'm happy to say they've released their first digital storybook: The Tortoise and the Hare! Check it out! I got to look in on the development process and it's helping us plan ours - we'll post more about that as it comes.

Yuko worked on Twisted Journeys 17: Detective Frankenstein for Graphic Universe/Lerner Publishing a little while ago, and it's hitting shelves and online stores soon (some versions are already available)! 

The Twisted Journeys series is essentially a comics Choose Your Own Adventure. Here's the description of Detective Frankenstein,

Mystery is afoot in London. Thieves roam the graveyards, your best friend is missing, and your creepy boss is building something in his lab. A famous detective is on your side. But does he have secrets of his own? Every TWISTED JOURNEYS® graphic novel lets YOU control the action by choosing which path to follow. Which twists and turns will your journey take?

Yuko learned a lot while illustrating this book! Graphic Universe largely specializes in kid-friendly stuff, so if you're looking to get a little brother or sister into comics, these might be a fun place to start. Here's a look at the interior (photo care of John Kelly):

I always loved that shot of the desk in the middle panel. 

That's it for us! See you next week!


yup! XD

Comment by Aido Thu, 01/27/2011 - 16:19

 Hahaha, that's why I said it!  I doubt any of our readers have regular access to cesium, it's fairly certain that no one's going to blow themselves up on our account.


Wowww though, that's an awesome video!  Thank you for posting it!

You're welcome.

Comment by Jedifreak (not verified) Thu, 01/27/2011 - 16:25

But seriously though, don't f**k with Alkali Metals.

Mr. Bargles

Comment by Razor (not verified) Thu, 01/27/2011 - 16:36

I love that name. XD I have a stuffed penguin (okay it's a Pillow Pet(TM)) that my hubs bought me and his name is...Pengy. =P

You guys never learn, do you? You bunch of firebugs, you.

Coool book, Yuko =) I once read a 'find your fate' book back in the day. It was like a D&D adventure for girls, and you know, it wasn't half bad. Wonder where I stashed it...


Comment by Razor (not verified) Thu, 01/27/2011 - 16:48

Just saw the video. You wouldn't do that to poor Mr. Bargles would you? (Nah, I know you wouldn't.)


Comment by Neph (not verified) Thu, 01/27/2011 - 17:05

What is it with John and condiments? Methinks he'd be happy with a penguin-shaped ketchup bong.

John sometimes consumes

Comment by Rachelle (not verified) Mon, 01/31/2011 - 14:58

John sometimes consumes condiments like he's taking a shot. Dressings, syrups, vanilla, soy sauce...

omg! we have the same

Comment by Betsy (not verified) Thu, 01/27/2011 - 17:59

omg! we have the same humidifier! It is so awesome, and I love its little beaky mouth. Both in life, and in this comic.

beaky, humidifying mouths forever!

Do Want!

Comment by JetAngel (not verified) Thu, 01/27/2011 - 19:04


I know what to get my father for his birthday. I'm glad I inherited his sense of humor. =D


Comment by Sara (not verified) Thu, 01/27/2011 - 19:23

We buy dehumidifiers in Oregon to keep our apartments from molding :(
I wish my dehumidifier came in animal shapes. I would want an octopus!!!


Comment by slice-of-insanity (not verified) Thu, 01/27/2011 - 19:53

I have the exact same humidifier in my room right now.

I did a double-take when I saw this comic XD

What do you need a

Comment by DasBruce (not verified) Thu, 01/27/2011 - 22:20

What do you need a humidifier for, isn't dry air good? In NZ we spend all our time trying to dehumidify.

Humidifiers held ease

Comment by Rien (not verified) Thu, 01/27/2011 - 23:33

Humidifiers held ease congestion, soothe dry throats, and just generally help you breathe when you're sick. When I was a kid I always had a humidifier in my room at night when I was sick so I could sleep easier.

*help (whoops)

Comment by Rien (not verified) Thu, 01/27/2011 - 23:33




Comment by Kilimbo (not verified) Thu, 01/27/2011 - 23:24

That cold cold penguin must need a might humidiFIRE :D

Wow, grats on the book. I am

Comment by Aube (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 01:25

Wow, grats on the book. I am totally going to get this for my cousins kid who is 5 and loves books. Trying to get him to read comics, already made him a die hard Indiana Jones fan.

I would think grain alcohol

Comment by Domstad (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 04:19

I would think grain alcohol would just evaporate and cause no damage at all. Would make everyone around it a bit happier though.

not actually very spectacular

Comment by Ben (not verified) Sat, 01/29/2011 - 08:53

i have this same model humidifier and for some reason the ultrasonic bit doesn't vaporize the alcohol, it just splashes it around in there indefinitely

i put alcohol in mine to kill off whatever was growing all slimy on the inside; worked well

I knew it! No one believed

Comment by Ananth Sun, 01/30/2011 - 12:58

I knew it! No one believed me ... !


Comment by Heartnet (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 04:38

Brown and Train are not animals! D:<


Comment by Anonymous (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 08:44

Seeing Ananth, Yuko and John here reminds me that Conrad hasn't shown up for awhile. Is he still around?


Comment by Anonymous (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 08:46

This was to the comic itself, not the Frankenstein comic. Sorry for confusion. Question stands, though.

Conrad's around! He lives

Comment by Ananth Sun, 01/30/2011 - 12:59

Conrad's around! He lives across town and works at Muse Games -- he has been pretty busy on deadlines recently and so we haven't had a chance to hang with him. Soon! I've actually got a couple of Conrad strips ready to go. 


Comment by GBeans (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 09:18

You learn something new every day.. I didn't know that there were such things as humidifiers. Can you put scented water in them? That would be amazing..

Well, maybe, but you can

Comment by Kailen (not verified) Wed, 02/02/2011 - 10:31

Well, maybe, but you can also add essential oils to the water. You can pick any scent you like. I use sweet orange in mine. :)

The pictures on that Amazon page...

Comment by Jam (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 09:40

Are weird! Very similar cats appears in two different peoples' photos! It's like he's made it his work to study these bizarre, steam-spewing creatures and he just goes house-to-house to stare at them.

Working at Target is hard...

Comment by Court (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 10:52

I see these humidifiers everyday at work and I want to get one! I would probably put a plant in him since I never really use a humidifier though. Love the comic and thanks for the product placement!

We totally got that as a

Comment by Ersyth (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 11:38

We totally got that as a present a few years back, it's an awesome mist-barfing machine.

... though we never thought up ways to set it on fire...

Holy cow!

Comment by Evensong (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 11:48

That's MY humidifier too! Talk about startling to see in a comic I just found XD -stares at the penguin staring at her- o.o

Thing most likely to make the humidifier catch fire...

Comment by Virtual Bob (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 13:36


Me too

Comment by MoreKilmer (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 13:47

I also own that object.


Comment by Z (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 15:44

I almost bought that exact humidifier! I was looking at them at around Christmas time and a friend bought me a different one as a gift. Oh well. Glad I'm not the only who whose thought it was neat. It was between the penguin and the elephant, really.

Your humidifier looks like a

Comment by ZombiePlasticclock (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 16:07

Your humidifier looks like a Prinny, dood!

Another one!

Comment by thepaisleyfox (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 16:40

Hahaha, I have the same humidifier! We just call ours King Penguin and I made him a little crown. :D

You named him KING Penguin

Comment by Bob (not verified) Mon, 01/31/2011 - 11:12

You named him KING Penguin and not EMPEROR Penguin?

Watch out Batman!

Comment by Alain (not verified) Fri, 01/28/2011 - 18:40

That thing looks like a trap for the caped crusader.

Make sure you fill Mr.

Comment by thegirlontheleft (not verified) Sun, 01/30/2011 - 00:19

Make sure you fill Mr. Gargles up with purified water, wikipedia says that:

" Unlike the humidifiers that boil water, these water droplets contain any impurities that are in the reservoir, including minerals from hard water (which then forms a difficult to remove white dust on nearby objects and furniture), and pathogens growing in the stagnant tank. Ultrasonic Humidifiers should be cleaned regularly to avoid bacterial contamination which may be projected into the air. "

Bacterial spew is never good, it would be like a continuous sneeze...

hopefully there's a

Comment by Anonymous (not verified) Sun, 01/30/2011 - 09:07

hopefully there's a distinction between "bacteria that thrive inside a plastic tank filled with water" and "bacteria that thrive inside the human respiratory tract"; the chance of catching anything from a humidifier seems remote

but i agree that it's not ideal

Amusingly, the Nemu-Nemu ad

Comment by ??? (not verified) Sun, 01/30/2011 - 08:09

Amusingly, the Nemu-Nemu ad I just saw mentioned "PANCAKES!" as another thing. That kitsy...

uh i don't wanna seem stupid

Comment by Anonymous (not verified) Mon, 01/31/2011 - 02:35

uh i don't wanna seem stupid but im kinda new to this, what does a humidifier do? i mean it makes the air more humid i know, but to what end?

Humans generally find

Comment by Bob (not verified) Mon, 01/31/2011 - 11:26

Humans generally find relative humidities between about 40-60% most comfortable. Any wetter, and it starts to feel muggy; it also promotes the growth of mold. Any drier, and your skin and respiratory tract start to dry out, which is uncomfortable and which can lead to them becoming so dry they start to crack. If you've ever had chapped lips, you know what this feels like. Humidifiers are designed to bring too-dry air back into the comfortable range.

This is usually most important in winter, when your heating system is raising the temperature of cold air, which causes the relative humidity to drop.

Speaking from a country with

Comment by Ben (not verified) Tue, 02/01/2011 - 09:31

Speaking from a country with less weather extremes (the UK) I was also a bit puzzled as to what this was. I didn't realise just how puzzled I was though until I had a dream the other night where it was suddenly revealed that it was a device used for shaving, whereby it kept the face permanently moist and the pores open while shaving, just by having it sit nearby and belch out steam. But thank you clarifying xD

I actually bought the dragon

Comment by Kailen (not verified) Wed, 02/02/2011 - 10:35

I actually bought the dragon one, and I love this little guy sooo much. But he watches me sleep. Creepy little guy. I hadn't considered that when I bought him and I almost wish I got the penguin because mist barfing penguin does not care.

I don't know, a dash of pure cesium could...

Comment by JET73L (not verified) Thu, 09/15/2011 - 01:55

...kick it up a notch.


...That was kind of a stretch.

I was wondering about John using it for an unorthodox cooking device, and followed that line of thought to wondering if I could use one of the boiling (non-ionic, but possibly ultrasonic) humidifiers to make the entire room smell of green tea, chai, or coffee. It would probably be bad for the humidifier (as an above commenter mentioned) if I didn't clean it out every day, and could stain nearby stuff with tea or coffee residue, but it would smell /amazing/.

Probably not a good idea.

Comment by Warvoid (not verified) Wed, 01/25/2012 - 01:38 know, I bet you could get Mr. Bargles to breathe fire if you used gasoline.

Granted, he'd probably explode soon after.

gel nimbus 14

Comment by gel nimbus 14 (not verified) Sun, 07/07/2013 - 10:42

To cause to become less natural, especially to make less naive and more worldly.