Papa Pedro’s Children – Karl Dandenell

Peter Carlson held the gurgling two-month-old infant with one hand, while the other dug through a dresser drawer. “Bwa! Bah!” gurgled the baby. “Right as usual, Cassie,” Peter said, pulling out a bright red knit cap. It was too small. Peter shook his head. “I know this fit yesterday.” He found another cap, a patterned alpaca wool hat with big earflaps. He pulled it down firmly over Cassie’s head. “Command: weather,” he said. Twelve degrees,…

Keep reading

Another question for Karl Dandenell

Q: What is the most effort you’ve ever put into making dinner?

A: Once, when trying to impress a date, I attempted to make surf and turf with rice pilaf on an old electric stove that had only 3 functional burners. I went to three stores (and spent most of my grocery budget for the week) to get all the ingredients.

I’d never cooked lobster before, and didn’t think to follow a recipe. I also used a cut of filet minion suitable for a single serving (not two). And I started the rice pilaf 35 minutes before my date was supposed to arrive.

Now rice pilaf takes a long time to cook properly – you really need to mince the onion and use a hot pan — but not too hot — to get the rice consistency just so. You also have to keep an eye on things. If the stock boils too fast, things burn. Too slow, and you get soup. Ideally, I like about 45 minutes to do the dish properly.

So, with minimal counter space, I tried to balance the prep and cooking for three dishes with the goal of having everything finished at the same time.

I was not successful. The steak was fine, the lobster passable, but the pilaf turned into porridge.

Still, two out of three was enough to impress the young lady.


Karl Dandenell’s story “Papa Pedro’s Children” was published in Metaphorosis on Friday, 28 July 2017. Subscribe to our e-mail updates so you’ll know when new stories go live.

More about Karl Dandenell

Karl Dandenell is a first-generation Swedish American, survivor of Viable Paradise XVI, and active member of the Science Fiction Writers of America. He lives on an island near San Francisco with his family and 2 cat overlords. He is fond of strong tea and single-malt scotch.

When not sitting in project meetings, he reads a lot of speculative fiction, and ponders the 42 forms of tai chi.

www.firewombats.com


Karl Dandenell’s story “Papa Pedro’s Children” was published in Metaphorosis on Friday, 28 July 2017. Subscribe to our e-mail updates so you’ll know when new stories go live.

It came from Karl Dandenell

Karl Dandenell’s story “Comes the Tinker” was published in Metaphorosis on Friday, 28 October 2016. My stories usually start from the ending (what I want to see happen) or a setting (where can my characters play?). “Comes the Tinker” was one of those tales that fell into my brain as both images (the Tinker and his cart with mechanical horses) and sounds. I was in the middle of tracing my wife’s ancestors from England to…

Keep reading

Comes the Tinker – Karl Dandenell

As always, they heard the children first. Even in the strictest, most conservative towns, somehow, a few of the youngest or bravest managed to slip out to the road and wait for them. In other places, the whole of the population turned out, led by the mayor, or captain, or caliph, holding forth banners and flags and flowers to welcome the Tinker and his wagon, drawn by the steel horses that never tired. “The Tinker!”…

Keep reading