From the chariot boudoir

If you can’t find the video you want on YouTube, look elsewhere. (This is the complete recording of the song, not just the excerpt included in the eighth episode of Girls und Panzer (and censored on Crunchyroll). The missing section of the anime begins around 1:50.) ((Though the censored section is back on Youtube for now.))

So we’ve had girls with guns, girls as guns (or is that guns as girls?), girls with mecha, girls as combat aircraft, and now with girls with tanks. ((It’s actually not that new. See Those Who Hunt Elves — on second thought, don’t. It’s lousy; not even Kotono Mitsuishi could redeem it.)) It’s probably all just pandering to otaku, but perhaps there is something more sinister going on. If anime reflects reality, Japanese young men generally are either hapless dweebs or sparkly bishies and crossdressers. If you want to form an army, they’d be useless. You’d be better off drafting young women, who in Japan have talent for using the tools of war, and often magic, too. Girls und Panzer may be just the latest in a series of entertainments designed to accustom the Japanese to the idea of women as warriors.

At least one Chinese writer sees “evil intent militarism” in Girls und Panzer, though it’s difficult to follow the argument as interpreted by Giggle Translate. ((Giggle Translate insisted that the original language of the linked page was Irish.))

Insomnia and czárdás

Early this morning, after I had given up on getting any more sleep, I discovered that there are a number of full-length ballets on YouTube. Coppélia is a favorite of mine. The melodious score is worth listening to even if you are not interested in dance, and the story almost makes sense. There’s even a mad scientist (or magician). The video above is a Bolshoi Ballet performance.

Others I found include La Bayadere, The Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake and more, often in multiple versions and occasionally in HD. There’s also opera.


And now for something completely different: Japanese Vikings, singing songs of [censored].

Update: And the video is gone. This is what you missed.

Exceedingly miscellaneous

In the 1970s, Jack Thompson bought a tract of land in the Royal Gardens subdivision on the island of Hawaii and began building a cedar home there. He finished it in 1983. As he installed the second-story windows, he noticed a orange glow on the panes. The light came from the lava fountains that heralded the eruption of Kilauea, which continues to this day. Over the years, lava flows took out all his neighbors’ homes, one by one, until only Thompson’s was left. This month, a vigorous flow found his house, leaving little beyond a satellite dish embedded in six feet of basalt.

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The many flavors of cheesecake

To save you the trouble of clicking repeatedly on the lower left corner of Steven’s header, I’ve collected 915 of the images and assembled them into a convenient slide show.

The singer is Mayumi Kojima. She’s probably best-known in the anime world for “Poltergeist,” the memorable opening theme of the otherwise disappointing Ghost Hound.

Yoctometers, yottameters and ponies

Two weeks’ worth of random stuff.

Of all the mysteries in Mouretsu Pirates, the most puzzling, and the least likely to be satisfactorily explained, are the Sailor Moon shout-outs. This Princess Serenity is anything but a ditzy airhead.

By the way, it is impossible to watch just one episode of Shingu.

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