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Everything posted by Shio-kago

  1. Shio-kago

    Goeido to Retire

    Goeido has been my favorite rikishi for a while now. The same faults that drew so much scorn from his critics are the very things that made me fond of him. His obvious psychological weaknesses: his lack of confidence and of focus, his apparent despondency and fatalism when things went badly-- are not the fierce warrior attributes that a champion would seem to require, and clearly limited the success that his skills and athletic abilities might otherwise have achieved. Yet consider-- for all those times he was kadoban, for which he was fairly criticized, those were the very times, back to the wall, in danger of demotion, that you would have expected his mental failings and vulnerabilities to have asserted themselves most strongly. But instead, he pulled through; over and over. That's why he was a bit of a hero to me. As a person who has often failed to be all they could be, an underachiever, and someone who has struggled with anxiety, depression, and self-esteem issues since childhood-- Goeido's little triumphs in "holding on by his fingernails" made me feel that I might also find it in me to rise to the occasion when it mattered; to stand and deliver when it was most urgent. Watching this supposedly weak man stubbornly defending his prestigious Ozeki rank for five years has meant so much to me. For the same man to display this sort of serene dignity in letting it go and moving on the way he has is just one more of those "little triumphs" in my eyes. When a man like Goeido can walk away satisfied that, whatever his failings may have been, what he accomplished was enough-- he has won. He competed against himself as much as his rivals and I am grateful that I got to watch it all and cheer for him. I wish him all success and happiness.
  2. Shio-kago

    Ridiculous Predictions for Kyushu 2019

    The Yokozunas enter the arena for their respective dohyo iri accompanied by walls of pyrotechnics, and shitty Pantera inspired metal, WWE style. The Fukuoka fans seem to dig it.
  3. Shio-kago

    2019 Aki Basho Discussion (spoiler alert!)

    The thing that caught my attention watching Takakeisho's match was that he pulled himself out of his stumble with the right leg. 169 kilos, about to eat dirt like that, must have put a lot of pressure on that knee. It seems to me, if he managed it without a lot of pain, that it could be a big confidence builder. The man needs to fight with total commitment almost as much as he needs his muscle tone back.
  4. Shio-kago

    Ridiculous Predictions for Aki 2019

    Daieisho and Daishoho reveal that they switched places months ago and nobody noticed. Daieisho announces that he is very relieved to tell the truth, because he didn't feel right getting the credit for Daishoho's recent strong performances.
  5. Shio-kago

    Nagoya 2019 Discussion (here be spoilers)

    As a Kakuryu partisan, I'm biased in his favor. However, I think it's fair to say that Kakuryu's matches can be broadly divided into three categories-- 1)Textbook, technical domination. 2)Screws up badly, but manages to escape with a win by not panicking in the scramble. 3)Screws up badly and is embarrassingly defeated. Looks crappy doing it, too. I guess once in a while he'll lose a major mawashi war to one of the handful of guys who are on his level working the inside(The match vs. Hakuho in March being a good example), but those are pretty rare. It's one of my fondest wishes to see a few more #1's from him each tournament, and a couple fewer #2's and #3's. I don't see it happening, though.
  6. Shio-kago

    Natsu basho 2019 discussions [SPOILERS]

    Endo was both an amateur champion, and a guy who shot up the pro ranks really fast. Those two things earn you a lot of fans. Japanese fans are very loyal, so once you've got 'em, you keep 'em. That accounts for most of it. For myself-- I appreciate how Endo can be really smooth on the belt. Like-- Sanyaku mainstay kind of smooth. But he also looks like a total dog when backpedaling, which he does all the time, reminding me why every time he ranks up, he ranks right back down.
  7. Shio-kago

    Ridiculous Predictions for Natsu 2019

    A cameraman in the hallway is shooting video of a Rikishi heading backstage. In frame, through an open doorway, Inosuke can be clearly seen licking his gumbai like a lollypop.
  8. Shio-kago

    New Ozeki Takakeisho

    By the time Douglas beat Tyson(And I don't wanna take anything away from Buster Douglas here! Douglas fought a hell of a fight that night!)Mike's years of training with Cus D'amato and Kevin Rooney were far behind him. It was D'amato's training that turned Tyson into a human buzzsaw, and after Cus' death and his seperation from Rooney, Tyson became complacent, arrogant, and just a little sloppy. The Tyson of 1990 just wasn't the finely tuned killing-machine that he had been in 1987. After his stint in prison he was diminished still further. I don't think It was that people figured Mike out, since his style was pretty straightforward anyway*, it was that he just wasn't trying as hard anymore either in the gym or in the ring. It's the difference between a young man who didn't think he could be anybody until someone convinced him that he could be, and a man who'd achieved his dream and just wanted to enjoy being somebody. Besides brutal punching power, discipline was what helped Mike become champ, and it was lack of discipline that cost him the title. *Very much like Floyd Patterson's had been, except that Mike was stockier and way more powerful. Not surprising, considering Patterson was also a Cus D'amato fighter.
  9. Shio-kago

    Haru Basho 2019 Discussion [SPOILERS]

    Listening to greybeards* discussing newbies, for better and for worse, puts me in mind of my new years resolution, which was to talk less and listen more. I'm tempted to say that loving sumo comes first and the rest follows with time. But I think that it's more accurate to say that for those who love learning and sumo both the rest follows with time. Even that doesn't seem quite right, though-- I've been following sumo for over a decade now(Still early in the life-cycle of a sumo fan, but not quite fresh off the turnip-truck.), and simply lack the ambition to acquire the depth of knowledge and expertise displayed by the old-guard on this forum. I love sumo, and I do want to keep on learning more as the years go by, but I'm content to take little bites. In the meantime, I get a lot of satisfaction listening to wiser heads converse and occasionally raise my voice to share my feelings about the occasional thing that really moves me. I'm grateful that the folks on this forum are so willing to inform and guide people. It's the most attractive quality of the community. You've been posting at a feverish pace these last few months though, Eikokurai. If you ignored any of the other really frequent posters, the forum would no doubt seem to be standing still. *Speaking figuratively.
  10. Shio-kago

    Have a go at a Haiku!

    Travelling swiftly. Though frosty mornings linger, He touches Summer
  11. Shio-kago

    Haru Basho 2019 Discussion [SPOILERS]

    When I say that Ichinojo looked bored, I'm usually criticizing him. Tonight, I'm saying I'm deeply impressed. Aoiyama's thrusts are strong enough to bowl a lot of top division guys right off the dohyo; To Ichinojo, they were barely an inconvenience.
  12. Shio-kago

    Haru Basho 2019 Discussion [SPOILERS]

    For what it's worth, I think that valour and gallantry are breathtakingly beautiful even in defeat; Maybe especially in defeat. Likewise truth, fortitude, and other admirable qualities. I'll admit to being a little less in tune with the poetry part. I might be inclined to use the word poetry metaphorically to describe a brilliant display of strategy or refined technique; it could be that something like that was what Jabbamaru had in mind. It would also be possible to compare Nishkigi's noble resistance to similar deeds you can read about in narrative poetry like in an epic poem, though that's more of a stretch.
  13. Shio-kago

    Haru Basho 2019 Discussion [SPOILERS]

    When Kakuryu sets up a good yorikiri, it really is a thing of beauty. Nevermind power-- establish a position so advantageous that resistance is next to impossible. I really hope he doesn't end up struggling with injuries all year; He's such a pleasure to watch when he's healthy and not pulling.
  14. Shio-kago

    Ridiculous Predictions for Haru 2019

    Hokutofuji pulls a slick henka on Kotoshogiku who fashionably takes out three rows of spectators including four geisha. Kotoshogiku bows deeply with respect after the bout. The next morning, questioned by the press about his conduct, Hokutofuji explains-- " 'Giku is a punk."
  15. Shio-kago

    TORCHBEARER 2019: the picks, torch match notices, results

    If I may explain(I apologize if I'm speaking out of turn.)-- It only seems complicated because you haven't recognized that the only really important thing is where The Torch ends up at the end of the year. The Torch is gradually going to work it's way up the ranks over the course of the next few tournaments and it's going to end the year in the hands of one guy. That's all your guessing: One wrestler, one rank. Get either thing right=big points. Get both right=Jackpot Even if you get neither thing right, you can still score some points if the wrestler you guess ever holds The Torch, plus some points for every match he wins while holding it. But playing the game only requires you to make two choices: Who will end the year holding The Torch, and what will be the rank of the rikishi holding The Torch at the end, whoever that might be. I hope this helps to clarify things for you, Fujisan.
  16. Shio-kago

    Hatsu Basho 2019 Discussion [SPOILERS]

    I've been quiet almost this whole basho because I've had nothing nice to say. I do wanna salute Tamawashi, though; he really got the job done!
  17. Shio-kago

    Hatsu Basho Day 7 and Rikishi's underwear

    So, a typical Friday night then?
  18. Shio-kago

    Acceptable Ozeki Record?

    I think you must mean this one--ōzeki/ And an excellent discussion it was, too. Good analysis in there.
  19. Shio-kago

    Acceptable Ozeki Record?

    Everyone will inevitably decide for themselves what they think is acceptable. For the Sumo Association the answer is quite clear and long established: Kachikoshi. If you personally judge 8-7 to be unacceptable-- you have no shortage of company. I will say though, that Ozekis who can average 10 wins but don't go on to become Yokozuna are vanishingly rare. An Ozeki that strong is just passing through on his way to the top of the sport. If we eliminate Ozekis who can't meet that standard, the Ozeki rank would be a ghost-town most of the time.
  20. Shio-kago

    Hatsu Basho 2019 Discussion [SPOILERS]

    Even speaking as one of those odd fellows who insists on supporting Goeido, I can only be happy for Nishikigi. His growth has been so gradual that it's gone mostly unnoticed, but he's become a really good wrestler. I love it when hard work and persistence pay off. Keep going and teach people to take you seriously, Nishikigi!
  21. Shio-kago

    Have a go at a Haiku!

    Morning of fresh starts Don't take things so much to heart! My resolution.
  22. Shio-kago

    Takanoiwa hits his tsukebito

    To relate this to my own experience-- I served in the army, once upon a time, and violence was my profession. The days when it was an accepted part of that culture for superiors to abuse or assault their subordinates are shrinking in the rearview mirror. It doesn't make anyone a better soldier. The whole military community is better because of this. I despise a bully. People who take advantage of vulnerable people, who do injury to those who are at a disadvantage because of their inferior social position, are despicable. I value the preservation of sumo culture and traditions, exactly as they are today, less than I do protection for people who are at the mercy of thugs. I recognize that Sumo doesn't belong to me, and none of this is up to me. I joined this community to share my enthusiasm for sumo, to learn from more experienced fans, to express my views, and maybe make a few friends along the way. So far, so good. I'm powerless to effect the behavior of anyone in sumo, anyway. I'm not uncomfortable to be judged a sanctimonious, western, Johnny-come-lately. However, Sumo itself is visibly struggling to change it's own standards and norms. The wider Japanese culture, of which Sumo is only a sub-culture and to which the sumo community belongs, has begun to reject Sumo as it has been. The Sumo Association is trying to steer the sumo community into line with the expectations of the broader society, and I'm just on a guy on the sidelines, cheering. In short, I have picked a side. Some of the posters here seem to think that things are better off the way they are; whatever their reasons may be-- I disagree. Others say that they're bothered by the violence and abuse; but not, apparently, as much as they are by people voicing their objections. I've seen that before many times. I'll applaud the sumo association when it deals sternly with brutes who take advantage of their subordinate's vulnerability. I think that Japanese law-enforcement treating a talented rikishi the same way they would some hooting dickhole who beat up his girlfriend would be a very healthy thing. If we could get similarly reliable intervention for football and basketball players here in the States, that would be much appreciated as well.
  23. Shio-kago

    Takanoiwa hits his tsukebito

    You're not the only one who has been misunderstood in this thread...
  24. Shio-kago

    Takanoiwa hits his tsukebito

    Not even to that extent, huh? Oh dear. Anyway-- Thanks for making that known to me, Kintamayama.
  25. Shio-kago

    Takanoiwa hits his tsukebito

    Why on earth isn't assaulting people outside of the context of competition or physical training treated as a crime? I'm unfamiliar with Japanese courts and law enforcement-- In the US, the District Attorney has discretion to press charges, even if the victim is unwilling to do so on their own behalf. Does Japan afford it's legal authorities no such powers? It would put a stop to most(though I'm sure, not all.) of this horseshit. Grown-ass men should not be hitting and hurting each other. This shouldn't be so hard. Edit: To be clear, I recognize that being under house arrest means the authorities are involved. What I'm looking for is, like-- Courts and jail time and such. Jail time would seem to be in order for violent offenders instead of business-as-usual, "Let the Sumo Association handle it's own business, in house." garbage.