Friday, June 22, 2012

Baby's got Back

Sumo is a demanding sport requiring strength, flexibility, short bursts of power and a lack of shame in wearing brightly coloured fabrics which accentuate your massive dimpled hind quarters.
Sumo wrestlers wear wooden sandals to improve their height to weight ratio.Most of the match involves ceremony and various poses. Barry hates it when his belly overhangs his belt, but here it is encouraged.
The goal is to push your oponent out of the rope ring, or onto the ground.Let us pause for more ceremony, this time throwing salt into the ring.
The referees wear fantastic robes and hats to indicate supreme authority. Here you can see him ruling on a clear win.
When there is a difficult call, there is no replay, instead the judge calls upon 4 wise men. When not judging, the wise men sit ringside, with attendants who cover them in blankets, presumably to avoid getting sand up their robes. Wise men don't like that.The stadium provides ample seating, with a notable lack of big TV screens and advertising.
We calculated that you get about 15 seconds of wrestling for every 4 minutes of ceremony. Here is some which led to a front row man being crushed flat. Note the expressions of astonishment.The famous bow ceremony performed by the current champion.
Sumo wrestlers intimidate each other through the following leg lifting maneuver. No really, imagine seeing this in a dark alley - scary, right?
The stars gather in a sumo circle to allow for comparison of heights, weights, and colourful aprons.
The 22 cheeks ceremony is also important.
Ok, how about another action shot.
On the street, sumo wrestlers are harder to spot, but if you look carefully, you can tell by their hairdos.
Finally, this is what losing looks like.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Japanesely Japanesish

Some times in your life that are more Japanese than others.During these times, it's best to stay in a traditional Ryokan hotel.
Here is what it looks like in the hotel room. Barry tried relaxing with green tea.
I wore appropriate attire and contemplated the tree in the tree contemplation nook.Then Barry, too, got more Japanese.With the contemplation complete, it was time for some Ryokan eating. You get so many pretty and small dishes that afterwards your stomach is as sore as your legs under the short table.After this experience, things around us started to get more zen.The next day, we upped the ante and moved to a Ryokan with a private hot spring bath called a Rotenburo.With a view of the misty mountains.Filled with even more Japanesely relax, it was time for more eating. Here is Barry and cuttlefish.This one is Barry after delicious melty special beef.
And here I am stopped to smell the sakura.

Fake it and make it

In Japan, they love their plastic food.And so do we, as it saves us from accidentally ordering the pink pickled jellyfish guts again.Barry decided to show his appreciation through learning the art.
As you can see, he took his cabbage-making very seriously.and was a proud wax crafter.Perhaps you are wondering what's next?Tempura shrimp looks real, but it's a tad less useful.Afterwards we had an appetite for the real thing, this is not Barry eating wax.Long noodles, according to Chinese folklore, will give you a long life. So, apparently, do mole hairs, which are grown to similar lengths. I have saved you the picture so as to not affect your love of udon. After our endeavours, we moved onto other mature adult hobbies.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Tokyo Walker

In an effort to carve out my niche on the web, this post is about footwear worn when strolling in Tokyo on a Saturday afternoon. Above is Laura in Singapore's Height of Fashion winner. Below, a demonstration that zebra pants go best with flats boots.Should you combine shoulder-less, short shorts, polka-dot socks and running wedges? In Tokyo, yes.The women below demonstrate that Saturday is one of seven days of the week for painful heels. No need to give your feet a break on the weekend.
A tribute to spaceman fashion.
Tribute to Holland.Winner of the matching accessories award, with hat matching shoes, and pants matching booted boyfriend, is below. Pull-up sock twins add to the contrast. Do you have an orange dress covered in birds? Here is the shoe solution to create the outfit of your dreams.Are you large, with an unusual hairdo and a robe? Then perhaps wooden flip-flops are best.