Odor signature – Chap. 5, Act 4, Strip 20

Congratulations, Sweden, on being home to the worst-smelling fish dish in the world, as being established objectively in a study conducted by Japanese scientists.

And congratulations, Japan, on having scientists who tackle the really though questions.

And finally congratulations, Professor Dr., for writing a brand-new, but pre-dated, chapter into the annals of unconventional warfare. Chemical warfare, in the stricter sense, had not yet been employed by 1899, although it had been variously discussed by colleagues of the Professor during the 19th century. So the greater disturbance to the timeline might actually involve the fact that, in original history, Sweden remained neutral during the Boer War – I’m sure the British PM, Lord Salisbury, will feel compelled to communicate his profound irritation at this gas attack to the Swedish government. Let’s just hope the Swedes will be able to clear it up without having to subject him to a demonstration of the odor of that particular fish dish.

Disclaimer: Surströmming is an actually extant dish made of fermented herring. Its effects have been slightly exaggerated in this strip for comedic effect, but it still remains an acquired taste of the specific sort that leaves you wondering which sort of demonic forces it would take to compell a sane person to make an attempt at acquiring it. Do not open a tin of surströmming inside – it should only be openend outside, preferably by a different person and ideally on a different landmass.

More on Thursday.

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