It's been a while since I've done a grab bag-ish post, but here we are: I have several things I have a little bit to say about, and no fic to say a lot about. Click down below the break for an amalgam of stuff!
First, let's talk about that episode. Okay, I lied, let's post pictures of Carrot Top from that episode:
wiki list of earth ponies informed me that she's "S05E21 Unnamed Earth Mare #1"
It is a super-cute costume, though.
Then again, if 1 season = 1 year, she easily could have worn different costumes in the S3 and S4 years. I think a three-year rotation is fair enough.
Other random thoughts about the episode: I'm disappointed that Fluttershy fell back into passive doormat mode for the day (would the Fluttershy from the first half of the season have let Spike guilt her into doing something she knew she was going to hate? I tend to think not), and the Flutterbat costume made everything worse because Bats is the worst episode and you can't make me like it lalalalala I can't hear you. Also, while Fluttershy learned a good lesson at the end (you don't have to make yourself accompany your crew to do something you don't like; you can skip out on one activity and still be friends), but I kind of wish her friends had learned the same lesson too, or at least that it had been more explicit: that not every group activity needs to include every one of your friends. Your D&D group and your Ultimate Frisbee group are allowed to have an overlap of less than 100%, you know? Likewise, maybe the lesson here could've included "if Fluttershy doesn't want to bob for apples, we can still do it, because not every activity has to include all six of us equally."
Still, some nice jokes, the tea party was hilarious (even if I didn't know any of the anime characters, and, after being told what they were, still don't know 60% of them), and I find myself unaccountably okay with the idea that Fluttershy tried to trick AJ into thinking her grandma was dead. The girl just doesn't get this "frighten" stuff; how would she know when she went too far? All in all, not bad.
In non-pony news, I was very disappointed to find on Friday that Grantland had been shut down by ESPN. If you didn't follow it, Grantland was a sports and culture site that focused on long-form, in-depth explorations of... basically whatever its writers wanted to dig into. That's what made the site great; it had an incredible stable of writers who were given the latitude to follow their interests, and that passion showed. If you want to see what I think was one of the best examples of where that philosophy could lead, check out Brian Philips's Sea of Crises, a wide-ranging look at Sumo wrestling, Japan's sense of its own history, Yukio Mishima's farcical, tragic attempted rebellion/suicide in 1970, and 20th century Japanese literature. It's a brilliant article, but also one that few sites would pay a writer to produce. Grantland, you'll be missed.
On a much more upbeat note, my sister introduced me to Myths Retold, which is basically Drunk History but in text form and for mythology (including some invented myths! Seriously though, The Tale of Turin Turambar is the most concentrated pile of tragedy I've ever read, and I've read a lot). I highly recommend paging through and finding a couple that tickle your fancy if you like irreverent humor and classic tales from modern and ancient folklore.