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Old 2007-06-19, 16:19   Link #1961
AVPlaya
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Swimming Kings

So you know that little dragon like logo after the OP, when the annoucer talks about the sponsors?



It's now public knowledge that it's the mascot/logo for Katsukabe Kyoei Swim Team. But why you ask? Well, I don't really know either, but I have a clue. This is the real logo, in flash gif, no less:



Okay it's not the best ever, but at least it's kinda moving. This is taken from the Katsukabe Kyoei Swin Team Home Page.

So why is it there? Well, I think it's simply because that the mangaka, Yoshimizu, is a great alumni. He really loved his school and the most significant achievement his school has ever achived in sports: The Katsukabe Kyoei HS Boy's Swimming Team is the Japan High School Swim Champion for last two years. That's right, the boys are going to try for a three-peat comes this August. The girls, while never won a straight out title, are 2nd and 3rd the past 2 years. Not too shabby either. We are talking about a swimming dynasty here; in fact, they have been an intramural swimming power for the last 20 some years. This school is famous for its swimming, and it's no wonder Kagami-sensei is proud of them, and used their logo in the anime. I mean the team is so popular it has its own Oendan (cheer squad). It's very rare for a sport outside of traditional team sports (baseball/soccer/rugby) to have its own oendan. That's how big they are.

So now I kinda get the in-joke. Remember how the girls constantly gripe about the fact that they can't go swimming even though there's a pool? The school probably have one of the best swimming facilities in all of Japan, and the swimmers there constantly trains not just for the nationals, but Olympics/International competition as well. So the regular students probably never get to use it.

So I'm going to be like, a total nerd and become, according to the KK Swin Team Kyoeikai Home Page, "We are Support's"!

The swim team group photo with their victory banners:


[EDIT to remove error and to correct my erroneus engrish.]

Last edited by AVPlaya; 2007-06-19 at 16:52. Reason: Removing error
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Old 2007-06-19, 16:26   Link #1962
Risaa
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Your posts are so awesome. I knew about the dragon being the logo for the swim team (it was on WinD's massive thread of notes), but I had no idea just how great they were. It's really cool that Yoshimizu brought his or her school into L*S and made it such a huge part of the story.

I don't remember the girls saying that there is no swimming pool at school though... just that the school has a pool but they never swim for phys-ed (and Kona wishes they could).
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Old 2007-06-19, 16:30   Link #1963
AVPlaya
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Originally Posted by Risaa View Post
I don't remember the girls saying that there is no swimming pool at school though... just that the school has a pool but they never swim for phys-ed (and Kona wishes they could).
Ah I guess I didn't listen closely. I guess the joke is that the swim team is always using the pool and that the normal students never gets to use it then. HA.
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Old 2007-06-20, 16:45   Link #1964
AVPlaya
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Baseball Update 1

Well for thsoe waiting for baseball news... here's the deal. The lots has been drawn and the will be 163 schools in the Saitama Regional this year. It's one of the larger prefetures so the plays will be divided into two divisions, the East and West division. The division champs will then battle for the Regional Championship for a place in the Koshien Tourney.

The actual games won't start until 7/11 though. I'm not sure exactly why there such a long delay but it may have to do with the complexity of scheduling all those teams to play in just one field. There will be like 4-5 games scheduled each day and the winners usually only have a day or rest before playing again. The brackets are not out yet so I'm not sure how many games a team has to win to reach Koshien, my guess is 5 or 6. It must be an logistical nightmare trying to plan this thing. The Okinawa Regionals are already underway (they only have 40 some teams). Yesterday a team was beaten by a score of 40-0 in just 5 innings in that regional; Japanese HS baseball is interesting like that.

I will start a new topic in the general section once the actual game play begins. Before that I'll just post simple updates here. One thing is for sure - The KK boys are one of the four teams favored to win Saitama this year. Let's hope they live up to their billing.

Last edited by AVPlaya; 2007-06-21 at 01:34.
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Old 2007-06-20, 19:16   Link #1965
Claies
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Damn...I wish I went to that school. I hated my high school to death. Going to school in Japan (and a good one to boot) would be a dream come true.
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Old 2007-06-20, 19:30   Link #1966
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Claies View Post
Damn...I wish I went to that school. I hated my high school to death. Going to school in Japan (and a good one to boot) would be a dream come true.
Careful what you wish for. The pressure on youth in Japan is enormous, especially come time for the juken (examinations to advance to the next level in the educational system), and the stress makes the American college entrance system look tame by comparison. Because the examinations are so difficult, and the consequences of failure so potentially devastating, the stress utterly destroys many students.

the Japanese government doesn't keep statistics on the matters, or talk much about them, but mental illnesses related to school stress are endemic in many Japanese youth. these can range from the "hermit" phenomenon to full-bore Post-traumatic Stress Syndrome and even, in extreme cases, suicidal depression.

Since the school we are discussing is one of the top academic schools in Japan, it is an extreme pressure cooker. 1,000 students moving on to college still represents only about two-thirds of the student body. And the admissions process to get in has to be one of the most brutally rigorous in all of Japan.
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Old 2007-06-20, 19:39   Link #1967
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Careful what you wish for. The pressure on youth in Japan is enormous, especially come time for the juken (examinations to advance to the next level in the educational system), and the stress makes the American college entrance system look tame by comparison. Because the examinations are so difficult, and the consequences of failure so potentially devastating, the stress utterly destroys many students.

the Japanese government doesn't keep statistics on the matters, or talk much about them, but mental illnesses related to school stress are endemic in many Japanese youth. these can range from the "hermit" phenomenon to full-bore Post-traumatic Stress Syndrome and even, in extreme cases, suicidal depression.

Since the school we are discussing is one of the top academic schools in Japan, it is an extreme pressure cooker. 1,000 students moving on to college still represents only about two-thirds of the student body. And the admissions process to get in has to be one of the most brutally rigorous in all of Japan.
I know...my parents pulled me out of Hong Kong precisely to escape that. There, you can't go by a week without seeing a student suicide on newspaper. But frankly, I believe that system makes better students in terms of academics and discipline.
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Old 2007-06-20, 19:56   Link #1968
Risaa
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It's the same in Korea as well. Last time I heard from my cousin (she's about a year older than I am), she was getting on average 2 hours of sleep a night. She attends regular school, cram school, and maintains a job... and it's better now than it was when she was in high school studying in her spare time just to get into a good college (her high school had such cute uniforms, BTW).

Although she's an exception - a lot of students don't take college very seriously once they get in (kind of like in Japan as well).

The thing that I really like about schools there (Japan and Korea) is the extra stuff that comes with it - many clubs, and especially festivals that the students build all on their own.
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Old 2007-06-20, 20:26   Link #1969
Vexx
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As usual... school systems in various countries could all learn from each other... but I think we know they'd tend to glomp on to the worst attributes of each
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Old 2007-06-20, 20:27   Link #1970
Claies
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The thing that I really like about schools there (Japan and Korea) is the extra stuff that comes with it - many clubs, and especially festivals that the students build all on their own.
Exactly. American public schools have nearly no motivation to do any school-wide fun events. ><;;
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Old 2007-06-20, 20:56   Link #1971
Vexx
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Exactly. American public schools have nearly no motivation to do any school-wide fun events. ><;;
The really sad thing is that they *USED* to.... in the 60s/70s, there were school festivals, clubs, holiday activities - a whole gamut of the sorts of things that promote team building and working with others to accomplish goals. Decades of systematic funding starvation gave us what we have today, bleh.
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Old 2007-06-20, 21:10   Link #1972
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Ah.. I didn't know about that... that makes me kind of sad, actually. One thing I really dislike about the education system here (in the U.S.) is how inconsistent it is. There are set things that must be taught in each grade level, but aside from that, it varies from school district to school district, from school to school on the quality of education that students receive.
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Old 2007-06-20, 22:41   Link #1973
AVPlaya
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Yup, the school system in Japan and the rest of East Asia is HARD. There's a LOT of benefits but the students really have to study. Frankly, after being both systems, I'm not sure which I really prefer. I guess I like Japan's system better since somehow the friends you make in it last a life time; I find that's rarely the case here in the US. Maybe it's the Asian culture, but right now I'm not sure if I want my kids in an American system.

On a lighter note, there IS a school in the US with cultural festivals, sports festivals, Japanese-style uniforms, and students wearing slippers in school: The Keio Academy of New York:

http://www.keio.edu/en/index.htm

It's really for the kids of Japanese business man overseas, but I guess anyone can get in if you can afford it. They need school like this to prepare for the Japanese college entrance exams - no US high school can prepare a kid for those tests. I wonder if they have sailor suits for the girls?

Another school related note: it seemed that the school Kona-chan attened in the Anime is NOT called Katsukabe Kyoei High School, but RyouOu Gakuen HS (陵桜学園高校). Although the school is based on Katsukabe Kyoei, the name and the uniform are distinctively different. I guess Yoshimizu did it to avoid legal trouble and to really make a very MOE uniform based on To Heart.
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Old 2007-06-20, 22:44   Link #1974
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We have a number of international schools (or immersion schools) on the West Coast... but they're private for the most part.
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Old 2007-06-20, 22:56   Link #1975
AVPlaya
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We have a number of international schools (or immersion schools) on the West Coast... but they're private for the most part.
u know if a Japanese-specific one? please do tell since I'm very interested in the topic. I guess they are all private but the point is anyone can apply for it... the Keio Academy has their policy clearly posted. I wonder if there are any non-Japanese national students in that school? Such a school is just fascinating to me. I'm quite sure the West Coat must have more such schools.
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Old 2007-06-20, 23:00   Link #1976
Risaa
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I guess they are all private but the point is anyone can apply for it...
[*chokes*] A school like that? If you've got money and lots of brainz you can...

I'll check for Las Vegas, but Cali would take days...

Update-Edit: There is an independent international school in which the same foreign language must be taken for 6 consecutive semesters... that's all I could find. Sorry... LV really lacks in the education department. -__-;

Last edited by Risaa; 2007-06-20 at 23:14.
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Old 2007-06-20, 23:06   Link #1977
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The International School in Portland, Oregon is Japanese-specific (immersion style, they also do Spanish and Chinese). http://www.intlschool.org/index.asp

There's also a small public elementary in Oregon that focuses on japanese. They have several cultural festivals every year. Can't recall the name but I'll update the post if I do.

There are a few usually advertising in the Shimbun or Asian Reporter (newspapers) .... I'm going shopping tomorrow at Uwajamiya so I'll try to pick up some newspapers for other examples.
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Old 2007-06-21, 01:00   Link #1978
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Wow great posts people. Learned a lot about Japanese culture.

1) Super aces in HS baseball do indeed exist. I thought the likes of Tatsuya (from Touch), Hiro (from H2), Goro (from Major), and others who can almost single-handedly bring their team to victory by pitching consecutive games all but existed in the realm of fiction.

2) Kyoei indeed ranks as A as a HS. I mean, a strong baseball and swim team plus strong enough academics that they actually put people in the prestigious Todai? Jeez, it must be one heck of an admission test they have; now I REALLY do wonder how the heck Tsukasa got into that school.

3) Their real uniforms look like nothing like the anime version. Now I understand the price, as supply and demand would suggest considering Otaku obsession of wanting to 'collect them all'. XD
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Old 2007-06-21, 02:05   Link #1979
AVPlaya
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Baseball Update 2

Just a short one. This is the actual match chart for the Saitama Regional. The 16 best team in the Spring Baseball Invitational turnament (there are two tournaments, a smaller one in Spring and a much larger one in Summer) are seeded and they get a bye on the first round. The 2 divisions are broken down to 4 sections and each section has 4 seeded teams who gets the bye. Our Katsukabe Kyoei team is a "B" seed, and that means that they'll only have to win 6 games instead of 7 to get to Koshien.

It's easy to find KK in this chart - they are the school on the very bottom left of the chart, with "B" next to their name. Just look at how massive this chart is; I've hidden it to avoid a long post.

Spoiler for Click Show to view Chart:


This is only one Regional out of 49. Now you can see the difficulty of winning the Koshien Championship. I was wrong about the # of fields... the semis and the final will be on one field, the rest of the play-offs are on 11 different baseball fields. Things start 7/11 and we will have a Saitama Koshien Rep on 7/29/07. Best of luck to Kona-chan's schoolmates...

@
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Super aces in HS baseball do indeed exist.
Yes they do, and believe it not, they are often better than the manga heroes. The kid Saito Yuki was like a super-human. He threw over 1,000 pitches in 3 days and his last pitch of the tournament was over 149 km/h. I was watching the last game with my mouth open. Fact is sometimes much more awesome than fiction.

Last edited by AVPlaya; 2007-06-21 at 02:16. Reason: replying DragoonKain3
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Old 2007-06-22, 14:16   Link #1980
Claies
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Somebody please remind me...how is the school name in Lucky Star written? I know it sounds the same but is probably written differently.
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