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Posts posted by Iwagakki

  1. I saw many gaijins on TV during matches.

    There were some blondies that were easy to spot towards the right side of the screen, a couple seats back.

    Three(?) gaijin guys at the very front on the left side. Got a very good view of Asashoryu's backside during the NHK interview.

    One Indian lady, in a sari?

    I didn't see Nishinoshima, or maybe I did and don't remember, but someone else did.


    Must be very nice. I will do it soon. Sumo is a very good thing, as a wise man says. To be there, close enough to feel the power of it, is quite nice. Dohyo Iri from directly in front of Asashoryu must be a very humbling experience.

    Nice you all were there.

  2. Wherethe heck is Adachi/Mark? I haven't seen much of him lately.

    Speaking of missing persons, I haven't seen much of Burainoan, Dejimasama, Hoshifransu, Kashunowaka or Yoavoshimaru, either? QTTP either. (perhaps to the benefit of some?)

    Not so long ago, these were quite active voices here on the forum, and now quiet.

    I wonder about Leela as well? Did she ever find out about boyfriend? And also, Kagami Ifumi. He was a sumo, and now we hear no more from him. Potentially interesting conversations, and insights are missed.

  3. something like this? Don't they come out every basho? There's a good pic of Bart with short hair in this, and a lot of b&w stuff. Nice poster, and some color stuff of the upper guys and gyoji's. I'll scan some of the pages and post them sometime.


  4. It's true, to some degree. Three of the Ozeki are chronic basket-cases, one is just accident prone, and one of them has the quality of something plastic at walmart. The rest of the batch are mediocre compared to Asashoryu.

    For a long time, I was not so hot on Asashoryu. I just thought he was the best of a bad crop. Which is, to a certain point, true. But nowadays, I think more of him. Sure there is a bad crop, and little to challenge him, but he really tries. I think it must really bother him to feel that he has no rival. Every time we turn around, he is saying so. He wants a rival, the more the better. He knows his legacy will suffer. Thus far in his career, there will be an * next to his name. The foot note will read, (*records established in a time when sumo was at it's lowest level ever), in a great many people's eyes.

    100 yusho would be the worst possible thing, legacy wise. Who wants that record. It's like dancing 100 dances at the prom with the ugliest girl in the county.

  5. You may only have one if you agree to accept it for free.

    I thought you didn't like "giving a man a fish". Perhaps you can teach me to draw instead? :-)

    Seriously thank you for your generous offer. I will indeed accept a free picture, but please allow me to send something sumo in return.

    Giving a sketch to a friend, even an imaginary "cyber-friend" just because it's nice, and will maybe add a smile, or a nice moment to his world, is a whole lot different than giving an imaginary person a welfare check, because "society owes it to them."

    Some day when I am in Tokyo, you can take me to meet Wakanoho, or Homasho, and after, we can share a nice argument about social issues over a Kirin Ichiban. That I will accept as payment.

  6. Will send salmiakki in return to Iwagakki. Kintamayama can tell you details about salmiakki.

    Sounds dangerous. :-)

    pm me the required info, and it's yours.

  7. If you can do a Wakanoho I will gladly buy it from you (providing it's not an outrageous price)

    Sorry, I don't do prices. You may only have one if you agree to accept it for free.

    Wakanoho is a very interesting face, and your story about him makes him even more interesting to study carefully.

  8. He's just going to be hitting his peak around 28-30, and should sustain at least 3-5 years after that.

    The first part says less than you probably think it does...28/29 pretty much is the average age for Makuuchi rikishi to reach their peak. If Homasho really is "young" in the physical sense, he should still have some room to improve even in his early 30s.

    At any rate, we're just starting to get a sense for how collegiate rikishi might age, now that the glut of mid-1990s tsukedashi rikishi is in their early to mid 30s...my early impression is that their peak isn't significantly later (maybe at most one year on average, as a semi-educated guess), but that the reduced wear on their bodies allows them to have a more drawn-out decline phase. Of course, assuming the amount of ex-college rikishi in Makuuchi remains as high as it is right now (and that's probably a good assumption to make), there won't be much of a comparative advantage in that for Homasho unless he really does manage to shift/extend his peak.

    BTW, I'm not sure that Takanowaka and Shimotori are particularly apt comparisons to make the point you're trying to make. Takanowaka isn't just "a couple of years older", but rather five (!), and Shimotori is a collegiate rikishi (his age at entry was just 9 months lower than Homasho's) so he's actually a perfect example of how it is possible to be washed up even if you're still on the right side of 30 and had a comparatively low amount of wear and tear.

    Maybe we are talking up Homasho a little bit, but it seems for good reason. He's got a lot of potential, and I was just saying that he is more of a "special case" than is often thought. He maybe isn't so young chronologically, but he is extremely young, Ozumo-wise, and he shows a lot of potential. That's all. Maybe he doesn't go to Ozeki in the next year, but he certainly has the physical tools to do it. Seems determined and committed as well.

    Bad examples, you are right.

    Homasho's story is sort of cool too. He was a college rikishi. Maybe was good? But he quit and now comes back. So, I guess he did not experience the full course of college sumo either, so he is not as refined as he might someday become.

    I think he will hang around at upper makuuchi for a while, and get experience. He didn't do so bad this basho. Takamisakari is unusually good this basho. Losing to Ama is not reason to dismiss him. Kotomitsuki is strong this basho. No disgrace there. The "boy wonder" Kisenosato lost to some of the same names Homasho did, and it doesn't go against him even though he looked worse in doing it. I know, I know. Bad comparison. But still. Maybe we should actually let Homasho turn into "the new Asasekiryu" before we pronounce him such.

    Besides, I like that he bows and is respectful.

  9. I hate the format and I hate the atmosphere
    (I am not worthy...)

    quoted from the SML, pretty harsh words from the cranky old luddite. While we are on the the word "hate" - I hate her dull boring commentary on NHK English broadcast.

    I sometimes feel there is certain snobbery at times held by some of the gaijin elders of Sumo, its pretty disappointing.

    I enjoy reading her contributions to KTO magazine in Japan and her few and far betweens offerings on the the SML but I feel its a real shame Doreens vast sumo knowledge wasnt possesed by someone more generous and affable like our own Jonosuke. What a waste.

    I "love" the Sumo forum and I "love" the format and as far as the atmosphere goes it mostly very good and while we have some clowns alright, we also have the ability to block them. I will be contributing here long after other sumo "fans" are gone.

    To each, his/her own, I suppose. I like sumoforum. I like that we have disagreements, and the we are all allowed our opinions, even if they are against the majority. Doreen is entitled to think as little, or as much, of me as she wants, right? It's all ok. I enjoy that our little sumoforum is a conversation that has lasted us several years, and it isn't just a one sided thing. Maybe it isn't all polite, and gentle, all the time, but that's ok by me. If it doesn't suit Doreen, then that's cool too. Her disapproval of our brand of enthusiasm toward sumo doesn't detract from my enjoyment in the least. In fact, it validates sumoforum if you ask me, that we are even worth mentioning.

    Anyway, don't go down that path...you don't need to respond in kind. Even if her commentary is not so great, you're better off without joining the hate fest.

  10. He did have a good match, actually. That wasn't such a bad loss. He just has poor balance, and, ummm...Light contact? on the doyho. Not much traction. Maybe he can learn it, or maybe not, but at least he fights. That's good, even if he doesn't go anywhere. I generally like the lowest ranked guys, because they are doing sumo without any reward, sort of, and often it is just a very personal thing. Not everyone will make it to any level in sumo, but it's cool to see a guy who is battling his own way through, and little else matters. At least he's trying.

    But Sugishita didn't even try. You guys were talking about how hard it is, and that "you should try it", and so on. Well, I think that it isn't so easy to generalize on the positive side either. I suspect that there are a whole lot of "disgruntled" guys in sumo, like Nishi said. And maybe a lot of them "break" and go away. Some of them break, and don't go away. Like Sugishita here, he really should consider his options, I think. I admire perseverance. In fact, I live by the principle. But when it goes beyond perserverance, into whatever, then it is time to rethink.

  11. Oh, honestly. >(Sign of approval...)

    Sugishita was falling down BEFORE the tachiai. Nobody is that pathetic. He's doing it on purpose. It's some kind of "attitude" thing.

    All he's going to to is get his name in the record books (if there is such a record) and then ditch sumo. That way he can tell his idiot friends at the Family Mart that he was a rikishi, and that he holds the record....blah blah.

    He's just a slacker with an attitude, and he's an insult to sumo.

  12. The last drawing I posted ended with a good result. Here's another one.

    I am not so sure it turned out to look so much like the person I was thinking of, but maybe I don't see right. Who is it?

    p.s. anyone want it? Free, of course. This is my senshuraku drawing this basho. I will do some again next time, I guess.


  13. I expect Homasho to fully heat the wall this basho. Let's wait and see how he comes back in Haru and make some more educated guesses then, shall we?

    He doesnt' seem to be heating the wall just yet. Honorable wins, so far. Only one spot of bad sumo manners, and he's just hanging in there.

    He may be 25, but in sumo years, he's just a baby. Quite a late bloomer, in fact. He only just started Ozumo in March of 2004, and has worked his way up rather quickly. His record is "only" 115-58, though not as impressive looking in makuuchi at 41-32. His body has just not taken the pounding of someone like Hokutoriki, Shimotori, or Takanowaka, even Miyabiyama(who are only a couple years older, but each have hundreds and hundreds of matches more in Ozumo) Asasekiryu is basically the same age, and has hundreds more matches in sumo, and signed up 4 years earlier.

    That's four years more wear and tear, that Homasho doesn't have, and he's already higher up the banzuke.

    I think he has no sumo sense yet, and is sitting at Maegashira #4 on natural ability alone. In the next couple of years, he will hone his skills, and become really a threat to make Ozeki. I think his skills are better than the newer ozeki already, but not as good as the older ones were, once upon a time. And at the moment, he is not "the second coming of Asashoryu" , for sure. But give him some time, and he should develop into a good match. He's just going to be hitting his peak around 28-30, and should sustain at least 3-5 years after that. Hakuho is hitting his stride early in his life, but already at his 21 has more than twice as many matches as Homasho. I think his peak will have come and gone before Homasho's begins.

    Age has less to do with it, for all sumo's probably, than cumulative injury effect, and wearing out mind and body.

  14. post-179-1168974058_thumb.jpg

    last night while I was watching sumo, I sketched this drawing of Asashoryu. I'm not much for drawing really.

    anyone want it? No charge. It's just a sketch on watercolor paper. If you'd like, you can donate something to the care and feeding of Sumoforum.

  15. It seems that unless Tochiozan and Kobo manage to win all their matches this week, we can expect a 10-5 yusho in Juryo. Or maybe an 11-4 is more likely, huh? but then again, a 12-way playoff at 9-6 isn't really such a stretch, is it?

  16. Hakurozan (3-4) over Iwakiyama by uwate-hineri, 28.1 seconds


    (Throwing Iwakiyama down and in a mood to praise himself)

    "You know a throw is not about strength or power. What can I say...it's like timing or possessing of masterful skill and techniques."

    did he really? Please tell me this is a "loose" translation....please? Ugghhh. It's like Dumb and Dumber, I swear. He's got the refinement and tact of a sledgehammer. Combine these types of "un-humble" remarks with his brother's behavior, and you have all sorts of fodder for anti-gaijin factions to work with.

    I don't side with the anti-gaijin forces, at all. But I can see where they get their ammunition. (Shaking head...) A little sensitivity to the situation, would be nice.

  17. Years ago, I lived in Herefordshire on the Welsh border for a while. While I was there, I drank a lot. A lot of wine mostly, but I went to the pub often. As often as I could, I guess, which was about 5 nights a week. Back then, the pubs closed early. I think at 11pm. I don't know if this is still the case.

    At the pub, they served "Flowers IPA" it think. I don't remember anymore, it was a long time ago. It was lovely ale. I recommend it to anyone. I remember the pint glass filled to the rim. Nothing more lovely than a fresh pint of your favorite ale.

    I also drank a lot of cider. Stowford Press, I think it was. A local company made it, and it was on tap at my little pub. The "publican" warned me always, about it. "Hooligan juice, my boy..." I never saw any hooligans, but I did spend many nights in a happy world, with cider in my glass and pretty English country girls on my mind.

    If I could spend my life in any way, anywhere, I would be a shepherd, in Herefordshire, or maybe in Hay-on-Wye, perhaps. A simple life, full of music, and cheer.

    Lately I have taken to Mead. I love mead. what is nicer than a glass of honeywine? It is unusual, and special, for someone to gather their own honey, and brew a magical drink with it. I adore my favorite meadmaker. He is a crabby old ornery man, who swears like a certain German girl, and has few other words for anyone. But his mead is wonderful, and it makes him happy and proud to know it is loved by many.

    I travel about "discovering" other meads and ciders. Not as far as I would like, because there are some great masters in Europe that I have not met yet. I love to meet the maker, so to speak. Especially craftsman, who make wines, and ales and ciders in small batches. Each batch is special and unique. Each is a kind of history. Like a single day in sumo, maybe. Special for what it is, not what we want it to be.

    Maybe not everyone thinks the same way.

    What are your favorite things? Do you like mead? Do you like Herefordshire? How about ales? Or goats? (Sign of approval...)

    Verena has me thinking today. She went to Japan, and she found a way, and a job, and a life. And she is there for sumo. She told her boss that Sumo is first, and work is second. I am in awe. She is right, and for such a young person, wise. I am so happy that she will experience her life on her terms. Even if just for a day, a week, or a month, or a year. It is an inspiration. The fact that she shares her moment with us, is nice, but it isn't as nice, (to me, anyway) as the very thought that she is there, living her moment, right now, in the Kokugikan.

    Any one else have any thoughts? I love mead, and sumo, and Herefordshire, and my goats, and art.

    I am in fact, drunk on mead. But I just wanted to tell you all, that I think it is about what you love, and maybe you can think about it for a while, and feel nice and good to know it.