October 14, 2016

Board up the windows, 'cause they's a storm coming!

Or so they're saying. The remnants of a typhoon which hit the western Pacific circled up and came all the way over here and it supposed to hit us tomorrow. We've had a bit of strange weather already; a tornado touched down in a town on the coast doing minor damage. We had a forecast for high winds a couple of days ago but I didn't notice anything.

The warning was for the entire PNW, so it doesn't necessarily apply invariantly to the entire area. And the prediction is for high winds tomorrow night, mainly on the coast.

I just received an email from XFinity, my internet provider, saying we may get outages but they're ready to work 24-hours to get it fixed, in case. (Xfinity? I thought my provider was Comcast. Oh, well. Maybe we got sold, the way my landline phone provider got sold, or maybe Comcast just changed brand names.)

Regardless, it's possible I'll be out of contact for some period over the weekend


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Rin Suzunoki




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October 13, 2016

Nobel foolishness

It almost seems as if there's been a concerted effort to turn the Nobel prizes into a laughing stock.

Awarding Obama the Peace Prize for not being George Bush was bad enough, but another prize committee has decided to top that:

Bob Dylan has won this year's Nobel Prize for Literature.

Fortunately, the Chemistry and Physics award committees retain a bit of dignity, but I suppose it's only a matter of time before one of them does something contemptible like giving an award to a Warmist, or something like that.

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October 12, 2016

Super Sonico in high school


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October 09, 2016

Keijo -- ep 1

I'm not going to dignify it with all the exclamation points they included in the title (fuly 8 of them). I quit after about 1 minute and have no urge at all to watch any more of it. It will, frankly, be worth plundering come the day, assuming I can keep my lunch down while doing so.

Here's an example of what the show has to offer:

It's a bad sign when a fan service show doesn't get a post at Fapservice, but this one hasn't, at least so far.

This ranks down with "milk vampires" on the "thoroughly disgusting" scale, and below "High School DxD". And that takes some work.

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Shuumatsu no Izetta -- ep 2

The art in this is really gorgeous; it's very well done. The character designs are nice for the most part. The basic conceit of the show is a bit strange, but that's true of many series which otherwise turned out to be really good.

But this series, at least so far, isn't really good. It's actually pretty bad. The problem is the writing. The story is melodrama, with bad guys who are REALLY bad, almost mustache twirlers (despite being clean shaven) and a female lead (Princess Fine) who is so brave and kind and dedicated that she's like a refugee from a Ghibli movie.

Everyone associated with the good guys is handsome or beautiful and is honorable and kind and brave and self-sacrificing. You kind of expect them all to have halos.

Everyone associated with the bad guys is brutal and sadistic and evil. Where are the horns and the whiff of brimstone?

The bad guys are Germans, from the nation of "Germania". The good guys are from the Duchy of Eylstadt. They show a map at one point, and a far as I can tell, the director cut a piece off of Austria to be Eylstadt.

There's only one character who is an enigma, Major Belkman. Nominally he's a German, but he isn't acting like all the others. What does he really want? What is he trying to accomplish? Unfortunately, that isn't the story; he's a minor character (at least so far). If I had to guess, I'd guess he's a witch or related to them. But he's an obvious candidate for a heel-face-turn before the series is over.

But I don't intend to wait for it. Dropped.

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October 08, 2016

Vivid Strike -- ep 2

The first half of this episode is "A day in Fuuka's life". It's a week after the previou episode and they've gotten into a routine. Fuuka sleeps in a spare bedroom in Nove's apartment, and gets up at 4:30. She goes to the gym and cleans it, and then Einhart shows up and they go for a run, and then go to Nove's apartment for a big breakfast.

Fuuka works the front desk until Yumina shows up after school. The kids show up after that, and Fuuka trains. And after the gym closes she does some final cleaning and then goes back to Nove's apartment and collapses in bed.

She doesn't look unhappy, and considering her history it is understandable. This is one of the better deals she's had lately and everyone treats her well. Her day is a long one, but the work isn't onerous, and the training is effective. In just a week she has already noticed a change.

Einhart knows that Fuuka has a huge well of magic and part of the training by everyone is to try to teach her how to access that and bring it out. It appears occasionally; once in a while she throws a punch and her fist glows and the punch is particularly powerful. But she doesn't seem to be able to do it consistently.

And another thing they want to do is teach her "Power Mode". That's the new collective name for the adult mode transformations of Einhart, Vivio, Rio and... Miura and Corona. Who have also learned to do it. And that's pretty cool. (That may have been another reason Miura came over, to learn that.)

They manage to get her to do it for the first time in this episode, even though she doesn't have a magical device. (Yet.)

This show is developing nicely.

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October 07, 2016

A milestone

For the first time in my life, I have added hot sauce to my food.

In our family growing up, food was hot if it just came from the stove or oven. We didn't use any kind of thing that made food the other kind of hot. So it wasn't until I was out of college and started experimenting with kinds of food I had never eaten in my life (such as Mexican) that I started experimenting with chemical hotness. But I've always been a lightweight.

It's possible to build up a tolerance to the chemicals that do that to your tongue. I worked with a guy originally from Korea, and his mother spiced everything up to the ceiling, and as a result his tolerance for hot food was legendary. When we'd go out to lunch at an Indian place, the waiter would ask "How hot do you want it, 1-10?" and he'd say "20". And they'd make it, and he'd eat it, with no sign of distress. I never had the nerve to try to taste it because I knew I'd be in pain the entire rest of the day.

Over time I have built up the slightest bit of tolerance, I tell myself, to the point where I really do like a bit of pepper in my Mexican food. Which brings us up to today.

I make taco meat a pound at a time. I put it in ice cube trays and freeze it, then transfer the hard cubes into a freezer bag. When I want to make something with taco meat (for instance, a quesadilla) I put a few cubes into a micro-wave safe bowl and nuke them.

The taco sauce I've been using is really tasty but it's labelled "Mild" which means "safe for Anglo Methodists". Today I put 12 dashes of Tobasco sauce in with the rest. I did it in stages; 4 dashes, stir and taste it, then another 4, and I probably could have stood another 4 or 8 beyond what I did.

12 dashes isn't really a lot; the batch turned out to be 23 cubes of meat.

But it really tasted good, and I could feel the heat, just a bit. It's in the ice cube trays freezing now, and I might have it for dinner tomorrow. If this is a success I'll try using even more next time.

UPDATE: And I decided to have that meat for dinner tonight. And it tasted great. It wasn't outrageously hot, especially since I ate it covered in melted cheese.

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October 06, 2016

Unsquare dance

Dave Brubeck is a famous Jazz musician and composer, most famous for the piece "Take 5". Brubeck is probably most famous for the fact that he tended to use strange time signatures, like 5/4 for Take 5.

Another of his pieces has the extremely clever (IMHO) name "Unsquare dance" which is in 7/4. And amazingly enough, it swings.

In 2001 when he was 80, that piece was performed by the London Symphony Orchestra with him as a guest. He had lost a lot of dexterity, so the main piano solo was performed by someone else, but he had a solo at the end.

The first soloist, a sax player, was truly outstanding. As soon as he started playing, I said, "Oh, yeah!"

But the most delightful thing of all is Brubeck's reaction to it all. He has a big grin the whole time and obviously is enjoying it enormously. Music is happiness (or can be) and this one is.

I don't link to music much but I ran into this a couple of days ago and couldn't pass it by.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in General Entertainment at 09:28 PM | Comments (7) | Add Comment
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October 05, 2016

Good Heavens!

Someone on Metafilter linked to Chizumatic! I wonder if he knows I'm persona non grata? (under my real name. Metafilter is the only site on the web where I use a pseudonym, because there are still people who carry a grudge against me from 14 years ago, and would stalk me if they knew.)

As to the question itself, I don't remember any cases of anime in Japanese with Japanese subtitles. The only times I remember seeing Japanese subtitles it was because the audio language was something else, like English or German.

Which wouldn't help this questioner, who apparently wants to listen to Japanese and read it simultaneously.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in Daily Life at 09:19 PM | Comments (8) | Add Comment
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