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Charlie Hatton
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Howdy, friendly reading person!
I'm on a bit of a hiatus right now, but only to work on other projects -- one incredibly exciting example being the newly-released kids' science book series Things That Make You Go Yuck!
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Now You Sumo, Now You Don’t

I watched sumo wrestling on ESPN this afternooon.

Why? I’m not sure, really. Perhaps NFL lineman asses just aren’t enormous or bare enough for me any more. I sincelrely hope that’s not the reason, but now I’m having trouble replacing so disturbing a thought with anything else. I’m hoping alcohol will do the trick. Lots and lots of alcohol.

Meanwhile, I was watching sumo, which is cool. I’m always interested in tuning in to events that are on the fringes of the American sports collective radar screen — sumo wrestling, trick-shot billiards, curling, Cleveland Browns football, that sort of thing.

(Okay, not that last one. Even Drew Carey couldn’t stomach watching that.)

Sumo, though, is cool. And it’s one of the few places where I can watch overweight foreign men trotting around in thong underwear without feeling all dirty. Lord knows it doesn’t work at the YMCA.

The most interesting thing about this match, though — yes, more interesting than jumbo warriors in ass floss; let it go already — was the commentary. Or rather, the lack of commentary.

It seems the sumo booth was manned by two gentleman. The first was one of those more-or-less anonymous ESPN announcer clones. You know the ones, with the pretty hair and the shiny teeth that remind you of your uncle, maybe, or that old roommate of the guy your brother used to know, if he’d shaved his pornstache and gotten a decent haircut once in a while. Pretty harmless, these guys — they’re just there to describe what you’re seeing and fill in the obvious gaps. They leave the really interesting bits of chitchat to the ‘expert in the booth’.

And therein lay the problem. The second announcer was a sumo wrestler himself — apparently quite an accomplished one, at that. He was approximately the size of a largish SUV, or perhaps a smallish Victorian house. He was a foot taller and several hundred pounds heavier than his partner, and appeared in the initial introduction to be deliberating over whether to eat the entire camera crew. Seeing as how many sumo wrestlers come from non-English-speaking countries, I imagine he was selected to provide color commentary because we speaks English very well.

He did not, however, speak English very much. Which provided a sticky situation for his boothmate. Their ‘banter’ went something like this:

Skinny Commentator: Well, here we’ve got a wrestler who’s had a lot of success in the sport in the past few years. You must have faced this guy an awful lot!

Sumo Commentator: …

Skinny Commentator: You, um… did, right? Face him a lot?

Sumo Commentator: Yes.

Skinny Commentator: And how was that?

Sumo Commentator: What?

Skinny Commentator: Facing him, there. In the ring.

Sumo Commentator: Hard.

Skinny Commentator: It was hard?

Sumo Commentator: Yes. Hard.

Skinny Commentator: I see. Well, he’s got quite a weight advantage on this next competitor. You were one of the bigger wrestlers out there; how was it for you facing a much smaller man?

Sumo Commentator: Hard.

Skinny Commentator: ‘Hard’. Great. Any special strategies you employed? Anything you’d do differently in that situation?

Sumo Commentator: No.

Skinny Commentator: No. Of course not. How about a bigger man? Anyone significantly bigger that you competed against?

Sumo Commentator: No.

Skinny Commentator: No. Similar-sized then, most of them?

Sumo Commentator: Yes.

Skinny Commentator: And how was that? No, wait — let me guess. Was it hard?

Sumo Commentator: Yes. Hard.

Skinny Commentator: All right, then, that’s just peachy. Another sake over here, please! Domo.

I suppose I can’t blame the big guy, really. Stringing multiple words together takes a bit of energy, and when you weigh nine hundred and eleventy pounds, you’ve got to conserve your reserves, I imagine. He’d hate to be winded and all tuckered out from gabbing next time he needs to take a tinkle, right? I’m guessing that’s an entire process unto itself for a dude so hefty; perhaps one involving a periscope, a tire jack, and a pair of salad tongs. But that’s only a guess, of course.

Apart from that, the wrestling was fun to watch. Any sport where a viable strategy for winning involves throwing a man to thr ground by his own wedgie is going to have entertainment value. Figure skating, just as an example, could definitely tap into a larger market with rules like that on the books. Spelling bees, too, maybe. I’m just thinking out loud here.

In the end, the truly disturbing thing — even more than the near-mute mountain of an announcer or the G-stringed behemoths slap ‘n’ ticking each other in the ring — was that a few of the athletes weighed in within a few dozen pounds of my own wieght. Granted, those were the leaner and shorter wrestlers — and none came all that close to my current mass — but the message was pretty clear: there but for a couple of extra microwave burritos go I. Plus, now I have an idea of what I might look like as a stripper.

And that’s the most disturbing thought of all. I’d better start with the alcohol now. Can I get that double sake over here, please? Domo arigato.

Permalink  |  6 Comments

6 Responses to “Now You Sumo, Now You Don’t”

  1. RRaccoon says:

    “an idea of what I might look like as a stripper”

    Lord help us.

  2. #Debi says:

    “throwing a man to the ground by his own wedgie.” To paraphrase Slim Pickens, you use your keyboard purtier than a twenty dollar whore…

  3. Ditdah says:

    I think you have a sick obsession with microwave burritos. Seriously, is there a 12-step program for that?

    Heh – Burrito Addicts Annonymous – BAA!

  4. Ditdah says:

    I think you have a sick obsession with microwave burritos. Seriously, is there a 12-step program for that?

    Heh – Burrito Addicts Annonymous – BAA!

  5. ditdah says:

    Apparently, this is my first day using the Internet.

  6. The Red says:

    Stripper?? OMG! Hey, it takes all kinds, but even though I have gone from 195 to 155 there ain’t know way I am going to strip for anyone. I have one of those bodies that look waaaaayyyy much better with clothes on than off.

    At least my cats finally stopped laughing when they see me changing my clothes. I guess they got used to seeing me nude. Either that, or they finally resolved to stop laughing to insure the continuance of their kibble. :)

    (How’s that for Engrish?)

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