Vilde Frang Plays Sinfonia Concertante

Never been the biggest Mozart fan, but the Sinfonia Concertante has always been a favorite.  The Allegro is a non-stop geyser of coruscating musical invention that will make your heart race. And what a performance by Vilde Frang and Nils Mönkemeyer and the Basel Chamber Orchestra.

Upcycled New Yorker Cartoon

I don’t have much time to create new content these days, so I’ll fob off some old stuff on you.

For a while now, when boredom strikes, I have been idly re-purposing a random New Yorker cartoon with a new caption. Always the same cartoon, the typical cocktail-party scene. The captions are pretty random, but most of them are in questionable taste, and you’re not going to read anything like them in the actual New Yorker.

(I don’t own the rights to the original artwork, and my captions have nothing to do with the original drawing. I hope this is fair use. Please don’t sue me.)

I call the result #UpcycledNewYorkerCartoon. Enjoy!

[envira-gallery id=”8693″]

German Word of the Week: Stutenbissigkeit

Bildergebnis für horse biting

Stutenbissigkeit comes from Stute (mare) and bissig (bitey). So, it’s a word for female horses biting each other, a form of female intrasexual conflict, a behavior we English-speakers associate with cats. In fact, if you type in the word ‘catfight’ into Google image search, you get nothing but pictures — sexy, sexy pictures — of women threatening or attacking each other. This is my favorite:

Sweden v. The Netherlands

Apparently, there’s also an Internet subculture of computer-generated girl-on-girl fight porn, which I didn’t know until just now.

The German Wikipedia entry for Stutenbissigkeit shows severe damage from repeated raids by sociologists and gender-studies grad students. We are informed in the very first sentence that this word is a “medieval sex-role stereotype”, and the authors point out, po-faced, that there’s no biological basis for it, since all horses bite, not just mares.

It only goes downhill from there (g, my translation):

The term ‘Stutenbissigkeit’ has become more and more prevalent since the mid-1990s. Borrowing from the conflict behavior of mares, the concept is meant to disparage competitive behavior or rivalry between women, by tacitly assuming the the conflict behavior of men as the standard of measure — that is, the behavior of men is seen as the social norm. This disparagement is accompanied by a subconscious association with socially undesirable, non-manly behaviors including jealousy or envy…. The background to animal metaphors is the continuing social taboos against and delegitimization of girls and women as actors who take part in open conflict an competition, and the resulting disparagement of their competitive behavior.


I hope you were taking notes, because this will be on the mid-term.

The article reluctantly mentions that there’s another related term: Zickenkrieg.

Which means ‘Bitch-War’.

And is not only a website but also, improbably enough, a conflict within the Soviet labor camp system!

This Blog is No Longer Dormant

Welcome to German Joys reloaded. There was a surprising and touching outpouring of anguish (well, mild dismay) when I shut down the old site. So I decided to relaunch German Joys, but with a new look and a new URL. This is now a WordPress blog.

I have moved most of the old archives to this new blog, which took a fair bit of doing. Some of the links and media didn’t make it, which is par for the course, but a surprising number did.

I deleted some posts which I thought were dated or just shite. This means any comments you may have posted on them were nuked. Sorry about that — if there was something genuinely awesome in there, I have a backup of the old site which I can send you.

I’m allowing comments, since most of my commenters were well-informed and thoughtful. Let’s be dignified, shall we?

There’s going to be quite a bit less posting about day-to-day politics this time around. More culture and, believe it or not, local Düsseldorf history. Yeah!

In any case, I hope you like the relaunch.