Today was a historical day for the Europeans and they probably don’t even realize it. Sumo has been dominated by Mongolian Asashoryu for years; you could say he is like Tiger Woods is to golf. But due to recent injuries and bad press for being caught playing soccer in his native Mongolia (totally against sumo rules, apparently), he hasn’t been up to par. This May tournament’s star has been Bulgarian Kotooshu.
Sumo legend Asashoryu performing ceremonial entrance
Kotooshu, whose real name is Kaloyan Mahlyanov, is like Beckham was to soccer. Girls swoon over this guy. He was doing so poorly the last tournaments that he was almost demoted in rank, but has since rebounded and won almost every bout this May (each sumo tournament lasts 3 weeks with each player doing one bout per day). Even though he is not Yokozuna, the highest ranked Makuuchi wrestler, he has done so well this year that he only needed to win either today or tomorrow’s match to win the whole tournament. That would make him the first European ever to win grand prize in a sumo tournament. And he did it just 15 minutes ago! Watch your TVs tomorrow for the ceremonies after the final bouts, should be interesting! He'll be given trophies and cash and a year's supply of meat or pickled plums or whatever the grand sponsors are awarding this time.
Sumo advertising and---oops, Kotooshu's white behind
I decided to surprise Ravioli and take him to sumo last Sunday. Tickets are freakin’ hard to get on Sundays and our seats were way back in never-never land, but we had a good time.
We had sumo lunches, each dedicated to a different champion wrestler. And of course we partook in plenty of beer and chu-hais (rice-alcohol cocktails) and plum wine in a can.
The most impressive thing about this tournament for me was found in the bathroom. The sumo toilets have the most technological control panels I have ever seen, look at this thing! If you didn’t read Japanese how would you flush!? I just had to take a picture.
The buttons read (from left to right) Stop, Butt powerful/Butt mild, Bidet, Fan (high, medium and low), Water Pressure Control. Then at the top you have buttons for positioning the water spray, a screen with water temperature and current settings, Massage on/off, and Turbo Stink Eradicator. Out of curiosity I tried the Turbo Stink Eradicator and air started blowing from inside the toilet bowl---EW!