There once was a pandahamster named Baja. He had a friend that was a rubber duck. At least, he thought they were friends. Baja lived inside, the rubber duck lived outside.
This is where they both lived. Some of you might have just paused and thought "hey, why does that look kinda familiar?" Sadly, there's a very good reason. Baja no Studio was made by Kyoto Animation and they based the building off of their Studio 1.
I saw this OVA last weekend, shortly after news of the terrible fire had taken over anime fans' attention. I'm not gonna lie, scenes like this, of daily life around the building, were hard to watch. It's a very light-hearted affair, Baja no Studio is, but I couldn't help but think about that madman's fire ripping through the place.
But there are magical girls, and zeppelins, and a magic comet blazing its way across the sky, and there is Baja and Ga, and for those 23 minutes or so, Studio 1 is a place of wonder and merriment again.
There's unsubbed version on yootoob, and subbed versions in all the usual places. It's worth the watch.
Update 8/2/2019: Kyoto Police released the names of some of those killed in the arson. Yoshiji Kigami, the director of Baja no Studio, was on the list.
3I'm sorry, I thought the part where I said "killed in the arson" was clear enough. "Words mean things; treat them carefully." Clayton, I love you the way I love all members of the Pond Scum, smoked for days and with a good bbq sauce, but I've been doing this blog for 14 years now. This is hardly the worst abuse I've perpetrated upon the English language, and I'd rather not be scolded thank you very much.
Posted by: Wonderduck at August 04, 2019 12:40 PM (ssz1E)
Christopher C Kraft, the man who "invented" both the concept of Mission Control and the position of Flight Director as NASA began their missions into space, passed away today at the age of 95.
Kraft served as the first (and only) Flight Director for all but the final Mercury mission, thus defining the job as the head of the engineers on the ground. After "executive meddling" during John Glenn's orbital flight, he demanded and got the autonomy the role required. From then on, the Flight Director's word became law during a mission, unable to be overruled by those outside of Mission Control.
He then became The Boss, selecting the men who would share the role with him into Gemini and beyond. He invariably was in the command seat when the very difficult or never-before-performed things happened, such as the first US space walk. Prior to Gemini 8, he pulled himself off the rotation to prepare for the Apollo missions.
He was in mission control when the Apollo 1 fire during testing occurred... which also turned out to be the last time he was to be a Flight Director for NASA. Instead, he became management as the Director of Flight Control and would have an integral role in the planning of Apollo missions. He was called in by Flight Director Gene Kranz during the Apollo 13 incident, and headed the group that decided how to bring the crippled spacecraft and crew back to Earth.
Kraft became director of NASA's Manned Space Center in 1972, a role he held until he retired in 1982, shortly after the second flight of the Space Shuttle (STS-2). In 2011, NASA named the Mission Control Center in his honor, and in 2016 he was inducted into the National Aviation Hall of Fame.
"He installed a sense of what was right, what was wrong, what you had to do, how good you had to be, and those standards that he kind of inbred into everybody, by his own example, and by what he did with us, continue today. The Control Center today is a reflection of Chris Kraft."
-Glynn Lunney, one of the original Flight Directors selected by Kraft, 1998.
It's great that he lived to see the 50th anniversary, but I kinda wish he could have lived to see us go back.
Posted by: Mauser at July 23, 2019 08:45 PM (Ix1l6)
He also ended the flight careers of more than one astronaut that he felt didn't have the proper temperament to work under Mission Control's direction, and was by many accounts a...challenging...person to work with. But he was probably the only person who could insist on Mission Control being what it needed to be: the first, final, and only word on how any given space flight was going to be achieved.
50 Years Since The Moon Landing
In 1964 Alvin Dark, the manager of the San Francisco Giants, and Harry Jupiter, sportswriter for the San Francisco Examiner, were watching batting practice as ace pitcher Gaylord Perry smacked home run after home run. Jupiter casually mentioned that Perry looked pretty good at the plate, like he had some decent power.
Dark knew better: Perry was an awful hitter, and this was back in the day before the DH was instituted. In a 22 year Hall of Fame career that saw him win over 300 games, his batting average was .131 in 1220 at-bats. Dark turned to Jupiter and proclaimed "A man will walk on the moon before Gaylord Perry hits a home run."
Five years later, Apollo 11 touched down on the Lunar surface, the first time mankind had journeyed to another body in the solar system. Neil and Buzz left their lunar lander and went for a walk on the Moon. About a half hour after this, Gaylord Perry came to bat in the third inning of the Giants game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, when Claude Osteen grooved a fast ball dead over the center of the plate.
I watched the PBS "Chasing the Moon" series (an American Experience special) and my girlfriend was in the room during the moon landing bit toward the end. I started giggling and she asked what was so funny. "Just wait," I said. Then, when the show was over, I brought up "Go!" on the stereo.
("You dork," she proclaimed, as she does pretty much daily.)
Posted by: GreyDuck at July 20, 2019 10:03 AM (rKFiU)
Well, she's not exactly wrong, you know. And yeah, that's about the best time to spring "Go!" on somebody.
Posted by: Wonderduck at July 20, 2019 10:47 AM (MvGV8)
Just ran across a "Live" version of Go a little while ago.
Posted by: Mauser at July 20, 2019 11:39 AM (Ix1l6)
Kyoto Animation Arson (updates at bottom)
Around about 10pm Wednesday, Pond Central Time, some maniac walked into Kyoto Animation's Studio 1 building, poured gasoline around, and set it on fire.
As I type this at about 1am Thursday morning, some solid information has come in. First, the arsonist is a 41 year old male, and is in custody. Second, there has been one confirmed death (edit: police are now saying ten dead), and many injuries... the most common number seems to be right around 30. There are also 20 "missing". NHK is reporting that at least ten of those were found lying on the floor of the second level... and left there are the search for survivors went on.
There are reports that the arsonist said "Let's see if this burns" as he poured the gasoline.
KyoAni has a number of different office locations around Kyoto. Studio 2 is where their offices and their retail store is located, for example. None of those other locations have been targeted. Some 70 animators reportedly worked at Studio 1.
I'm hoping this wasn't some crazed otaku's way of "getting back" at KyoAni... "I hated Endless 8, blah blah blah..." Reportedly, they're one of the best studios in Japan to work for, so maybe a fired employee? We'll find out soon enough, I expect, but no matter the reason, this is horrible.
Update: 241am - According to one report, among the missing are Tatsuya Ishihara who directed AIR, the Haruhi Suzumiya series, Kanon 2006, Clannad, and Hibiki Euphonium. Or, in other words, all of my favorite KyoAni shows (and Air, which I'm not fond of). Other directors missing are Ishidate Taichi (Violet Evergarden), and Takemoto Yasuhiro (The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya movie), and others.
Update: 855am - The death toll is now up to 33. I've seen unconfirmed reports that Takemoto is among the dead. Of the 70 people known to have been working in Studio 1 at the time of the arson, 69 of them are dead or in hospital for injuries of various severity. Many of the dead were reportedly found in a stairwell leading up to the roof, felled by smoke. It's important to note that this building was in a residential neighborhood; there were no fire escapes, only one stairwell, and only one way in, the main entrance. Oof.
Reportedly, the arsonist was yelling something that might translate out to "you plagiarized me." As KyoAni has only done two original works, Munto and Tamako Market, this seems unlikely. He had purchased 40 liters of gasoline in two containers just a half-hour before, and apparently brought them on a cart to the building. He reportedly told the people at the gas station that the fuel was for his generator. The president of Kyoto Animation has said that they've been receiving threatening e-mails for a few years... no idea if they're connected to this case.
This is now the largest mass murder in post-WWII Japanese history, displacing the Sagamihara massacre.
Update: 1009am - Sentai Filmworks, the American distributor that has done much work with KyoAni (either currently or in the ADV era), has begun a GoFundMe campaign to help those affected.
I woke up over an hour early from a horrible nightmare and the first thing I saw on Twitter was this news.
This is an utterly horrible loss on multiple levels. I'm a bundle of cuss words and tears right now.
Posted by: GreyDuck at July 18, 2019 07:18 AM (rKFiU)
Praying. All the news seems to be very bad.
Bl. Fra Angelico, pray for us!
Martyrs of Kyoto, pray for us!
Posted by: Suburbanbanshee at July 19, 2019 07:43 AM (sF8WE)
Apparent confirmation from Kyoto police that the arsonist
A) Has some unspecified mental illness
B) Has in the recent past been arrested for theft
C) Told police that KyoAni stole material or ideas from his own work. He seemed to indicate or allege multiple or ongoing acts of intellectual property theft.
He lives in Tokyo, and KyoAni have an office in Tokyo...so this definitely seems to be an issue of some kind of unhealthy fixation. He traveled to Kyoto to harm KyoAni because Kyoto Animation is in Kyoto. Right? Attacking the idea, rather than a logical, thought-out attempt to cause some specific damage to KyoAni. Or maybe I'm over-analyzing it.
Short of just saying "mental illness", I just can't grasp what would cause someone to do this.
Grr Argh Pfft (updated)
I had a job interview today. It was for a job very similar to the one I had before, claims processing. Not exactly the same, but close enough that I feel I'd be good at it, quickly. Despite it being 90 degrees out in the world, I wore a nice shirt and tie... really dressed to the fours (note: it's impossible for me to dress to the nines. There's not a tailor in the world that could make clothes that look that good on me), y'know?
Went in feeling confident, knowing that I had this one. I was perfect for the job.
45 minutes later, I went back out to the Duckmobile, wondering just exactly how I had managed to completely pee that one down the leg of my proverbial firesuit so badly. It's not even like I had a bad interview. I answered all questions well, was engaging, asked a couple of intelligent questions of my own... and left feeling like I had been slapped in the face with a long-dead mackerel.
I am no stranger to failure, as anybody who has read The Pond for more than a few days will be aware. But this feeling... this is new and exciting, in a completely terrifying sort of way. I'm already sure that I'm not getting this job. Either I was getting some vibe from the interviewers or I'm just down on myself, I dunno. Hope I'm wrong.
I'm going to drink some ice cold gatorade, chug a tylenol or two, and go lie down for a couple of decades. Maybe when I wake up, I'll feel better about the situation.
Update: It's now the next day, and I received an e-mail from the company saying in effect "Nope, it wasn't just you... we really didn't like you. Get lost." Less than 24 hours from the interview to rejection... that's the fastest turnaround I've ever had at least.
You reminded me of an interview that gave off odd vibes. Didn't get that job, but found another one later that actually turned out better for me.
You never know when the Fairy Godmother Department (which is open part-time) will place you name on the To Do list.
Posted by: Frank at July 20, 2019 07:58 PM (rglbH)
So I got an e-mail from The Librarian this morning, pointing out that I haven't posted anything here at The Pond in a while. This is true. Fact of the matter is, I'm having motivational issues. Not just with blogging, but with just about everything. For example, I have a new computer chair. "Yes, finally!" I can hear y'all cheer. Yep, new chair... it's over there, in the dining room, in a box, waiting for me to put it together. It's been like that for about three weeks.
See what I mean? Working on it just seems so... well.
This past Monday? I had lunch with the folks. Literally the first time in 16 days I had left my apartment for any reason. The one good thing is that... look, remember back at the beginning of the year when I had to get a hotel room for four days on no notice? Well, that issue was finally resolved on the 5th. Maybe if you e-mail me, I'll tell you what it was about.
Instead of turning this into a whiny LJ post, here's some music:
Yes, really. It's catchy as hell, and for a while there Toby Keith had a great run of tuneage. Don't judge me.
Sorry to hear you're having motivational difficulties. Been there, done that. It sucks.
As for the musical taste, I've liked a lot of Toby Keith's stuff. Beer for my Horses and Courtesy of the Red, White, and Blue especially.
Posted by: jabrwok at July 12, 2019 06:22 PM (wKZS0)
Build the chair! They're not that hard. Any little thing will help break the cycle of no accomplishment. And also help with the clutter problem.
Posted by: Mauser at July 13, 2019 07:15 PM (Ix1l6)
That thing looks like a Cadillac of computer chairs. You totally need to take it for a spin. As it were.
Posted by: GreyDuck at July 15, 2019 07:21 AM (rKFiU)
That Pitcher Is Getting Shelled!
The Google Doodle for today is a rather fun little baseball game!
Your job is to hit the ball. The only way to make a strike is to swing and miss, three strikes and the game is over. To make it easier the pitcher, who I'll name "Yu Darvish", tips his pitches... watch the color of his cap, and woe betide you when it turns red. I've scored 57 runs and hit a homer over 1700 feet. (edit: 2002 feet off a redcap. I'm so proud.)
Lemonade is a great left-handed power source, btw.
edit: this seems appropriate, considering the holiday tomorrow.
No, I won't condemn anyone for putting ketchup on a hot dog. This is the land of the free. And if someone wants to put ketchup on a hot dog and actually eat the awful thing, that is their right. It is also their right to put mayo or chocolate syrup or toenail clippings or cat hair on a hot dog. Sure, it would be disgusting and perverted, and they would be shaming themselves and their loved ones. But under our system of government, it is their right to be barbarians.
Ketchup and Mustard on a plain Oscar Mayer wiener on a cheap bun is about the only way to eat them. Calling that a hot dog is the *real* crime.
At a minimum, get an all-beef 1/4 lb. wiener, cut a few slits cross-ways on one side, no more than halfway through; put them on the top oven rack and broil on hi. Usually about 6 minutes if the oven is already heated, longer if not. Turn over right as they start to bubble and char; heat the other side for no more than another minute.
Serve with nothing, but preferably with at least yellow mustard. Preferably made up with your favorite regional condiments and accessories. Do it right, because I guarantee the wiener will be just about perfect.
It's like I don't even know you anymore, Ben. I thought I taught you better than that.
Vienna Beef frank, bun with poppy seeds. Mustard, chopped onions, neon green pickle relish,
two halves of a tomato slice on one side of the dog, a quartered pickle
spear on the other. The whole shebang covered with celery salt. Sport
peppers are if you want the full-blown "dragged through the garden"
experience... I generally don't get them myself. I admit, I am weak. Ketchup is
acceptable for children and people from Wisconsin.
The bun is steamed, usually. The dog is either steamed or
water-simmered. You can grill them, in which case it's a "char-dog." Truthfully, during the summer, that's really the way to do it.
And THAT'S how you do a good hot dog.
Posted by: Wonderduck at July 08, 2019 02:51 PM (EXhwA)
I was just trying to be inclusive. Personally I'm looking forward to my next trip to The Ballpark and getting a "Chicago-Style" foot long which follows the recipe properly. And being German, I'm a bit partial to sauerkraut and brown mustard on my hotdogs, occasionally...
ALTHOUGH...I do personally and perpetually prefer grilled dogs to steamed or boiled...