Saturday, January 26, 2008


Our edition of the International Herald Tribune includes the English edition of The Asahi Shimbun, the second most popular newspaper in Japan after the Yomiuri. So it's been all sumo, all the time, at least in the Sports section (Giants, what?) these past couple of weeks, as there is a tournament going on right now in Tokyo (there are only six a year, three of them here).

Attending a sumo match, where ringside floor cushions are pricey and sell out fast, is only one way for fans to get their fix. Some of the stables where the wrestlers live and train let you come and watch the early morning training sessions for free (some start as early as 5 am!), as long as you keep the noise and numbers down and bring along someone who speaks Japanese. Some say it pays to bring the stable master a bottle of sake too.

Sumo smackdown:

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