Several top sumo wrestlers, led by Hakuho, took part in a bean-throwing ceremony at Naritasan Shinshou-ji in Chiba prefecture (real close to Narita airport). Mamemaki is a part of the Setsubun celebration welcoming spring where one throws dried beans at a demon (oni) to cast out the evil spirits. While throwing the beans, participants yell “Oni wa soto, Fuku wa uchi”, telling the demons to get out and inviting luck to come in. You’re also supposed to eat some of the dried beans – one for each year of your age.
Hakuho is featured in the video above taking part in the event and getting beyond last week’s controversy. We shall oblige and move on from this non-controversy. Sports events all over the world have their officiating controversies and this one is probably the smallest controversy in that history. “The Tuck Rule” utterly ruined American football for me and this one is such small potatoes in comparison. The video below is a good history of that rule.
We did mamemaki for the first time since we moved into our new house and it was a lot of fun. We took turns being the demon and running around the house getting pelted with beans. It was less fun to pick up the beans afterward. We thought about doing it outside but it’s been real cold. For context here north of DC, we’re on the same parallel as Iwate prefecture, well north of Sendai. We’ve had a string of misfortune lately, from illness to home appliances blowing up and flooding so anything helps.