Sumo is nowhere near as popular as it once was. It presumably never will be either. But when there’s the very real possibility of a Japanese wrestler winning a tournament for the first time in 10 years, it can still garner a good deal of attention.
Photographs from a small group of islands
I like his shirt. I would like to wear that to work.
Yes. Great shirt, and a great name for a bar too.
d. minnis says
and I hear the winner IS from Fukuoka.
Yes. Wasn’t sure if he’d manage it or not, as he had the weight of a nation on his shoulders. But fair play to him. Won’t do the sport any harm at all either.
I see all those signs and wish I could figure out what foods (and drinks?) are on the menu! ;S
When we were in there, my mate and I were talking about how difficult such a place would be for tourists. Be a great place to experience a regular, local bar/eatery, but trying to order something would be a nightmare.
If you can read some of it, you can easily work out what it is or ask about it, but if you can’t read anything you have no chance…
The Google Translate app has a photo translation feature. Point, scan, rub your finger over the kanji and voila. Not perfect but it will give you a fighting chance.
Ah, ok. Didn’t know that. That would definitely help. A rough idea of what’s available and some pointing would result in food on the table. Plus there’d be the added excitement of wondering what dishes some of the weirder translations would deliver.
When I’m in Japan, I can go to specialist eateries (e.g., yakitori-ya, sushi-ya, etc.) that don’t have English menus because, worst comes to worst, I can ask for an “moriawase” or “omakase” selection. Thank goodness they do exist! 🙂
‘osusume’ is also a good option. That way you’ll probably get a choice. Providing you understand what the choices are of course!
Hans ter Horst says
It looks like sumo is back again, never seen so much sumo coverage as the last few days! 🙂
Great shot, looks like nobody had time to order 🙂
Cheers. You’ll be happy to know the drinking only stopped for a very brief moment!
I know. A Japanese winner makes all the difference…
Hi Lee, sorry I won’t comment on your picture today but on the arranged winner of this basho. Ozeki Kotoshogiku did finish first indeed but he was given the basho win with the hope to revive the interest for the sport. I’m guessing this is the mandatory basho win that an ozeki usually has. Reference from recent years: ozeki Baruto – 1 yusho; ozeki Kotooshu – 1 yusho; ozeki Kotomituski finished his career with one yusho; yokozuna Kakuryu – 1 yusho before his promotion to yokozuna; ozeki Kisenosato was given the opportunity to win numerous times but he “refused” to do it…
No need to apologise at all. Quite the opposite. Very interesting to hear your thoughts.
For many years, I was a huge sumo fan. Watching religiously on tv, and making the trip to see it live on numerous occasions. But all that changed when there was the huge match rigging scandal, along with what seemed to be the forced retirement of asashoryu, and also the dreadful details of the young wrestler who died from bullying.
All that said, I went again to the Ryogkoku Kokugikan this time last year when a mate’s brother was in town. Needless to say I had a cracking time, and it rekindled my love of the sport. But what happened in this tournament has made me question the whole sport again. Hakuho’s surrender on the 14th day in particular was anything but a competitive match, which, as you say, effectively gave the win to Kotoshogiku.
I’d desperately like to be proven wrong, but it’s all terribly suspect to say the very least…
A bit of a late response, but the win in September, 2016 by Goeido was another example that you (and I, and many other sumo fans that had turned their backs to sumo) are right. The yusho was the expected present to Goeido. Out of 15 bashos as an ozeki so far, Goeido had met the ozeki standards only in two. And how about Kisenosato! My grin is even bigger now. Finally, he got his win as an ozeki too… (I admit he is better than Kotoshogiku, Goedo, Baruto, Kotooshu). And we’ll have the first Japanese yokozuna in many years. The prestige of the game is restored. Kampai!
Yes, he’s been so near so many times, it was great to see him finally get what he deserves — especially after getting the most wins last year but having nothing to show for it.
Big pressure to come no doubt being that long-hoped for Japanese Yokozuna, but with Haramafuji and Kakuryu often struggling, and Hakuho possibly starting to fade, it could be a very good time to step up. Plus finally getting a yusho should boost his confidence enormously.
That’s a lot of food on offer! 🙂
There was. What we had was very good as well. A good chunk of the men is drinks too though.
J. Izumi says
I agree that Hakuho’s performance was a little suspect. Having said that, I’m still very happy for the Fukuoka native to win this long awaited Emperor’s cup for the Japanese. I really regret Asashoryu’s retirement and so miss seeing him compete. I’m still loyal though and never miss a tournament on TV and live whenever possible.
It was, wasn’t it? Very unlike him…
But yeah, it was nice to see someone else winning. Certainly won’t do the sport any harm either. Obviously Asashoryu was deemed to be doing the sport harm, but for me, a bad boy is always a plus. Adds to the excitement, and people go to hopefully see them lose. Certainly when I saw him live, the excitement before his bouts was way more than for any of the others.
I just had to laugh at the content. Every man in the bar is watching the sports event. The only woman is looking into her purse.
Yes, I was very happy to capture that. Amused me too.
That’s a very well lit bar. I like the moment captured so clearly on the TV too.
I loved watching Sumo on Channel 4 in the UK when they aired several years’ series in the 80’s; the era of Akebono and the Dump Truck. In recent years I’ve looked for coverage her but to no avail. To see it live is an experience I’d love to have the chance of.
It is. A bit too bright to be honest, but that’s the case with many Japanese places.
I never got into it when it was on the TV back home. Didn’t really get it when I first came here either. But after being here a year or so, I went to see it live, and that was me hooked. A very different experience.
Are those all menus on the wall? It really makes it look cozy (I don’t know any japanese).
They do, don’t they? And yes, all menus. Both for food and drinks. Pretty much impossible not to find something you fancy!