At the back of the hill

Warning: If you stay here long enough you will gain weight! Grazing here strongly suggests that you are either omnivorous, or a glutton. And you might like cheese-doodles.
BTW: I'm presently searching for another person who likes cheese-doodles.
Please form a caseophilic line to the right. Thank you.

Sunday, February 24, 2013


If you came here for photos of the wife of Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, there are a few minor bureaucratic procedures that must be completed before we continue on to the shocking revelations. We'll need a stool sample, a DNA swab, your fingerprints, and a retinal scan, in addition to application forms filled out in triplicate (you will find the necessary documents elsewhere on this site), as well as a full psychiatric evaluation, and an affidavit from your solicitor attesting to your emotional and financial stability.

Italians need not apply.

Reason being that those silly buggers probably already saw the pictures in a gossip rag published by Mondadori in Milan. Southern European paparazzi pursue the prurient interests of their public with an obsessive single-mindedness and efficiency which puts Chinese military internet hackers to shame. And we WOULD have written about that, but those cleanminded Asians In Uniform just aren't interested in this forum, and, despite the repeated mention of high-rise panties, seafood, and manga characters in a Japanese high-school setting, have failed to compromise the security of this site.

But they ought to read it avidly.

Purely for relaxation.

More about those photos of Kate later.

Please note embedded links at the bottom of this page.

This blogger is both pleased and amazed at the avid public interest in photographic evidence that royalty consists of real humans with real body parts. In that, they resemble us; we also have body parts. Shan't tell you where they're hidden.


What flabberghasts many people who seldom read manga (漫画) is the enormous number of strips featuring students. Surely, they wonder, those Japanese must be obsessed with teenagers? Specifically young nubile girls? Panties? Well, yes. Societally they worship nubility. And panties. But the high-school setting of popular manga is not based on that.

As a short sampling of manga will show.

[Note: the following short descriptions of specific manga and anime are from Wikipedia. Enough material is presented there that it seemed better to feature cherry-pickings. For the full articles, please click on the link cited as 'source'.]

Azumanga Daioh (あずまんが大王 Azumanga Daiō, lit. "Great King Azumanga") is a Japanese comedy manga by Kiyohiko Azuma. It was serialized by MediaWorks in the shōnen manga magazine Dengeki Daioh from 1999 to 2002 and collected in four bound volumes.

The manga is drawn in a series of vertical four-panel comic strips called yonkoma and depicts the lives of a group of girls during their three years as high-school classmates. The series has been praised for its humor driven by eccentric characters, and Kiyohiko Azuma acclaimed as a "master of the four-panel form," for both his art style and comic timing. -- Azumanga Daioh chronicles the everyday life in an unnamed Japanese high school of six girls and two of their teachers.

The story covers three years of tests, talking between classes, culture festivals, and athletic events at school, as well as time spent traveling to and from school, studying at Chiyo's house, and vacations spent at Chiyo's summer beach home and the fictional theme park Magical Land, concluding with the graduation of the main cast. It is generally realistic in tone, marked by occasional bursts of surrealism and absurdity, such as Osaka imagining Chiyo's ponytails being "unscrewed" from her head and an episode featuring the characters' New Year's dreams.


Chibi Vampire, originally released in Japan as Karin (かりん), is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Yuna Kagesaki. The story is about an unusual vampire girl, who instead of drinking blood must inject it into others because she produces too much.

Karin Maaka is the middle child in a family of vampires who immigrated to Japan two centuries earlier. Unlike the rest of her family, Karin does not feed on blood, she produces it. As a result, she is forced to bite others to expel the extra blood, lest she suffer exaggerated nose-bleeds. She also exhibits no normal vampire traits, and instead lives her life just as an ordinary teenage girl would. She can go outside during the day, attends high school, and follows the sleep pattern of normal humans. However, the general peacefulness of her life is disrupted with the arrival of a new transfer student, Kenta Usui.

Any time she goes near him her blood increases.


Cromartie High School (魁!!クロマティ高校 Sakigake! Kuromati Kōkō, fully titled "Forging Valiantly Ahead!! Cromartie High School) by Eiji Nonaka, is a Japanese comedy manga.

It follows the everyday life of Takashi Kamiyama and his odd classmates at Cromartie High School, an infamous school for delinquents.

Shinichi Mechazawa (メカ沢 新一 Mekazawa Shin'ichi): One of the most notorious delinquents of Cromartie. Though there is a rumor that he may be perhaps a robot, no one but the main characters (Kamiyama, Hayashida, Maeda, etc.) seems to notice, including himself.


Dokaben (ドカベン) is a baseball manga by Shinji Mizushima, serialized in Akita Shoten Weekly Shōnen Champion magazine from April 24, 1972 to March 27, 1981.

Dokaben is centered on Taro Yamada and his teammates Iwaki, Tonoma, and Satonaka and was focused mainly on their activity as a high school baseball team. At first, it focused on Yamada, Iwaki, and Sachiko and was set in Takaoka Middle School. But in Volume 8 the team is transferred to Meikun High School for their baseball skills.

The story of Dokaben continues in Dai Kōshien, Dokaben Pro Baseball Story, and Dokaben SuperStars Story.


Gokusen (ごくせん) is a manga series by Kozueko Morimoto. The story follows Kumiko Yamaguchi, the granddaughter of a Yakuza boss and teacher at an all-male private high school.

The plot involves Kumiko Yamaguchi, the granddaughter of a Yakuza boss, Kuroda of the Kuroda Ikka. Her parents died when she was at the age of seven, and her grandfather had no other descendants, so Kumiko is next in line to head the family business with the title of Ojou. However, her lifelong dream has been to become a teacher. While her grandfather approves of her choice, others in the family want her to become the next boss.

Kumiko (known by her students as "Yankumi") becomes a teacher at an all-boys private high school. Her class is full of delinquents, but she tries her hardest to teach them not just about academics (her subject is Mathematics), but about lessons of life, much like any "dedicated teacher" story. Though she's forced to keep her family a secret from the public, her Yakuza upbringing gives her the strength and the experience to reach out to her students, while also providing comedic relief.


High School! Kimengumi (ハイスクール! 奇面組 Haisukūru! Kimengumi) is a manga series written by Motoei Shinzawa which ran in Weekly Shōnen Jump from 1982 to 1987. The title literally translates to High School! Funny-face Club or High School! Weird Face Club.

Kimengumi is an episodic chronicle of the bizarre adventures of a group of misfit junior high school (and later, high school) boys who form a club known as the "Kimengumi".


Kanokon: Kanokon's story revolves around Kouta Oyamada, an extremely innocent young first-year high school student who moves from the country to the city and thus transfers to Kunpō High School. On his first day at his new school, he meets a beautiful second-year female student named Chizuru Minamoto. Chizuru asks him to meet her alone in the music room. When he arrives, she tells him that she is in love with him and accidentally reveals to him that she is in fact a fox spirit. Chizuru constantly and openly flirts with Kouta, even in front of others, which embarrasses him greatly. Soon after the story begins, a wolf spirit named Nozomu Ezomori transfers into Kouta's school and class. From day one, she is all over Kouta, which serves to embarrass him more and cause Chizuru to become annoyed at her new competition for Kouta's affection.


Major is a sports manga series by Takuya Mitsuda. It has been serialized in Shōnen Sunday and has been collected in 78 tankōbon volumes. In 1996, it received the Shogakukan Manga Award for shōnen.

The story of Major follows the life of Gorō Honda, from kindergarten to being a professional baseball player, seeking and overcoming tremendous challenges. Sequentially: Kindergarten ~ First grade (volume 01 chapter 01 - volume 03 chapter 06), Little League (volume 03 chapter 07 - volume 14 chapter 05), Junior High (volume 14 chapter 06 - volume 24 chapter 02), Kaido High School (volume 24 chapter 03 - volume 33 chapter 02), Seishu High School (volume 33 Chapter 03 - volume 46 Chapter 10), Minor league baseball (volume 47 chapter 01 - volume 54 chapter 02), etcetera.


Midori Days (美鳥の日々 Midori no Hibi) is a shōnen fantasy manga by Kazurou Inoue. It was published by Shogakukan in the magazine Shōnen Sunday from September 2002 until November 2004 and collected in 8 tankōbon volumes. It is licensed in English in North America by VIZ Media and in Singapore by Chuang Yi. The series is about a high school boy who one day finds his right hand replaced with a girl named Midori and his attempts to return her to her real body.


Ranma ½ (らんま½ Ranma Nibun-no-Ichi, pronounced Ranma One-Half) is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Rumiko Takahashi. It was originally serialized in Shogakukan's Weekly Shōnen Sunday from September 1987 to March 1996, and later collected into 38 tankōbon volumes. The story revolves around a 16-year old boy named Ranma Saotome who was trained from early childhood in martial arts. As a result of an accident during a training journey, he is cursed to become a girl when splashed with cold water, while hot water changes him back into a boy.

Ranma ½ had a comedic formula and a sex changing main character, who often willfully changes into a girl to advance his goals. The series also contains many other characters, whose intricate relationships with each other, unusual characteristics and eccentric personalities drive most of the stories.


Saki (咲-Saki) is an ongoing Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Ritz Kobayashi. The story revolves around a first-year high school girl named Saki Miyanaga who is brought into the competitive world of mahjong by another first-year, Nodoka Haramura.

Saki Miyanaga, a high school first-year student, hates mahjong because her family would always force her to play it and punish her regardless of the outcome of the game. Due to this, she learned how to keep her score at zero, neither winning nor losing, a skill said to be more difficult than actually consistently winning.


Sakigake!! Otokojuku (魁!!男塾, lit. Charge! Men's Private School) by Akira Miyashita is a comedy martial arts manga that was originally serialized at the Weekly Shōnen Jump from 1985 to 1991. It is staged in a private boy's school that teaches ōendan to troubled teenagers. The students are trained to "revive the Spirit of Japan" and mainly engage in fighting or killing courses. The nature of the manga is usually considered by the readers as a comical, or even parodic view of Japanese nationalism.

The martial arts depicted in this series are also highly exaggerated. Whenever someone is about to play an otherworldly trick, the author draws a sidebar to explain it and cites an encyclopedia-style explanation from books published by "Minmei Publishing Co." (民明書房) which is a fictitious story-telling device.


Samurai Girl: Real Bout High School (召喚教師リアルバウトハイスクール Shoukan Kyoushi Riaru Bauto Hai Sukūru) is a Japanese light novel series written by Reiji Saiga and illustrated by Sora Inoue. It was serialized in Dragon Magazine from 1997 to 2010.

The story revolves around a school that doesn't break up fights, but rather, they grade them.


Shakugan no Shana (灼眼のシャナ, lit. Shana of the Burning Eyes), also known simply as Shana, is a Japanese light novel series written by Yashichiro Takahashi with illustrations by Noizi Ito. ASCII Media Works published 26 novels from November 2002 to November 2012 under their Dengeki Bunko imprint. The story focuses on Yuji Sakai, a high school boy who inadvertently becomes involved in an age-old conflict between forces of balance and imbalance in existence.

In an early draft of what would later become Shakugan no Shana, Yashichiro Takahashi set the story in a different dimension and described the main character as having the initial personality of Shana, but the appearance of an older woman similar to Margery Daw. However, after talking with an editor, Takahashi rewrote the character to have the appearance of a young girl. In doing so, he used Shana's small build to symbolize a story of growth and to emphasize the physical conflict between her and her opponents.



Mention naturally must also be made of Anime, that being the corollary to the mangaverse. And yes, there are high-schools there also.

Just to mention two of them:

Girls und Panzer (ガールズ&パンツァー Gāruzu ando Pantsā) is a 2012 Japanese anime television series created by Actas.

The story takes place in a universe where girls participate in Sensha-dō (戦車道, lit. "Way of the Tank"), the art of operating tanks, as a traditional martial art. Miho Nishizumi, a girl who has had a bad experience with Sensha-dō, transfers to Ōarai Girl's High School to get away from it. However, soon after joining, the school revives Sensha-dō and Miho, being the only student with any experience in operating a tank, is ordered to take part.


K (or referred sometimes as K Project) is a 2012 anime series animated by the studio GoHands and directed by Shingo Suzuki.

Yashiro Isana has lived a relatively ordinary, simple life. He lives in the technology-advanced Shizume City and attends Ashinaka High School, a notable high school that is located on an island just outside the areas. Yashiro is friendly with everyone. Nothing ever seems wrong about him, except perhaps his habit of forgetting where his school-issued PDA is.

However, nothing normal has been happening since the recent murder of Tatara Totsuka, prominent member of the infamous HOMRA. No one knows who exactly killed him but the man responsible bears an uncanny, identical appearance to Yashiro. Seeking vengeance, the Red Clansmen of HOMRA set out to get Yashiro and kill him.

Everyone suspects that Yashiro is the murderer. But whether or not he is guilty is not clear.



Mostly, Japanese mangas set in high schools feauture baseball, comedy, and violence. Yes, panties are occasionally provided for your edification, but they aren't the main theme, more of a happy coincidence. The primary reason for setting so many stories in a high school is that these are an easily recognized locale, in which a multitude of characters have good reason to encounter each other under a variety of circumstances. A more intimate microcosm of society, in a way. Additionally, as for most of the readers the stresses and conflicts of the place have become a fond memory, they provide a familiar and non-threatening reference.

Anybody who truly wishes to know the Japanese must read manga. People who want to understand the Italians, however, would probably benefit from reading about the Duchess of Cambridge's bikini instead.

Italians, and famous English people in bikinis.
It's a peculiar obsession, if you ask me.
I kind of lost track of the bikini.
It didn't really interest me.
Sorry about that.

Better they should read about manga anyway.
It's much more interesting.

NOTE: Readers may contact me directly:
All correspondence will be kept in confidence.



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