Tochi-From-Kochi


Kochi is Tochiozan’s “shusshin” (出身). This was a post that I wrote a couple of years ago to commemorate a win Tochiozan had over Terunofuji. I thought I’d repost it since I have actually been to Kochi.

Tachiai (立合い)

Walking Along Shimanto-gawa Walking Along Shimanto-gawa

In light of Tochiozan’s upset of Terunofuji, I thought I would put in a quick plug for Kochi, his home prefecture. I have not been to his actual home town but I visited Kochi city with my family and a friend and we took the Anpanman train to Shimanto-gawa (Shimanto river). It’s an amazing place. The people we met were really friendly. Kochi is the source for a lot of yuzu and is famous for a particular fish dish called katsuo no tataki. We ate it at a really good restaurant, and we were invited to the house of a friend of a friend for dinner so we had it there, too. I’m no connoisseur of fish but it was good – I can tell salmon from tuna (raw or cooked) but when it comes to white fish, I’m lost. Aji might as well be catfish…

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Tokyo’s Tinseltown: Kinshicho (錦糸町)


16577578035_881deb5ea3If you read this blog and have never been to Japan, one day you will hopefully make it to Tokyo and to Ryogoku Kokugikan (両国国技館) – the main sumo venue. The next train station is literally Tokyo’s Tinsel Town, Kinshicho (錦糸町). You will recognize the first character as nishiki. I’ve written before about the meaning of nishiki. Together with the kanji for thread, it means tinsel.

Now, the city itself is not really all that much of a tourist attraction. There are a couple of big malls that service the neighboring communities, including Ryogoku and Kameido (亀戸); the train station is also a local hub with an express train of the Sobu Line. Off the main streets, there’s also a bit of the rather unseemly side of Tokyo with the hostess clubs, massage parlors, and love hotels. Don’t worry, as a foreigner you won’t be hassled too much because most of the fuuzoku (風俗) places are off-limits (NG) places so not many touts will bug you. But as I mentioned, the area is really best known locally as a shopping district for the neighborhoods.

Tochi-From-Kochi


Walking Along Shimanto-gawa
Walking Along Shimanto-gawa

In light of Tochiozan’s upset of Terunofuji, I thought I would put in a quick plug for Kochi, his home prefecture. I have not been to his actual home town but I visited Kochi city with my family and a friend and we took the Anpanman train to Shimanto-gawa (Shimanto river). It’s an amazing place. The people we met were really friendly. Kochi is the source for a lot of yuzu and is famous for a particular fish dish called katsuo no tataki. We ate it at a really good restaurant, and we were invited to the house of a friend of a friend for dinner so we had it there, too. I’m no connoisseur of fish but it was good – I can tell salmon from tuna (raw or cooked) but when it comes to white fish, I’m lost. Aji might as well be catfish. It’s all good, whether baked or fried. When it comes to yuzu, though, that is about as distinctive of a flavor as you can get. It’s a citrus but it’s not an orange, lemon, lime, or grapefruit. It’s just different.

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Prince William is a fan of Harumafuji


In the past, I’ve written about how a member of Rock ‘n Roll royalty, Sir Paul McCartney is a fan of sumo. Apparently, a member of actual British royalty is a fan of sumo as well. Several Japanese media outlets have reported that during his recent tour of Japan, William expressed his fondness for sumo and made a special request to meet Harumafuji. According to Nikkan Sports, “日馬富士の大ファンというウィリアム王子が「会いたい」とリクエスト…” (Prince William, a big fan of Harumafuji, requested to meet). If you don’t believe me:

Harumafuji meets Prince William

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Ichinojo New Kesho Mawashi


Ichinojo has appeared in Baby Star commercials and a cartoon version of him is used on their packaging. Now Baby Star features on his new Kesho Mawashi. At the last tournament, he was sponsored by NiBank, the National Bank of Mongolia.

The Oyatsu Company makes these Baby Star brand ramen chips that are popular among kids in Japan. Oyatsu actually means snack in Japanese. The baby star mascot features on one version of the new Mawashi while Mt. Fuji features on the other with the Oyatsu Company’s name written out in Japanese below the picture.

I’m actually not sure why they haven’t made it to the US, yet, since legit ramen is finally becoming “a thing”. My son loves the chips but I’ve never had them. I will try to remember to have some next time we travel back to Japan.

Spring Tour Schedule Released


I’m really just on pins and needles to see the next Banzuke. I think they’ll be releasing that in the next week so I’ve been checking the Sumo Kyokai website. Today they released the Spring Tour schedule.

Two events popped out at me for those hoping to visit Japan. The first is an event at Himeji on March 31. The second event is the free Honozumo exhibition bouts at the Yasukuni shrine in Tokyo on April 3.

For those who hope to travel to Japan but don’t get a chance to make it to one of the main tournaments, these events are a way to at least see some of the famous wrestlers. At Himeji, you’ll be able to see the famous castle (though my favorite is still the one in Kochi). The Yasukuni event you’ll be able to see some bouts, too.

Himeji Castle
Himeji Castle