Sayonara Amerika, Sayonara Nippon

This and That

Posted in baseball,Current Events,Music,Putting One Foot in Front of the Other by bourdaghs on the March 20th, 2010

The sumo tournament in Osaka has reached the midway point, and as expected sole yokozuna Hakuho (7-0) has dominated. But two promising rikishi have also stepped up to take advantage of the opening created by yokozuna Asashoryu’s sudden retirement last month: ozeki Harumafuji, the former Ama and a disappointment since his promotion to ozeki a couple of years back, is now 7-0, as is sekiwake Baruto, who could win promotion to ozeki with a championship in this tournament. Baruto in particular has been impressive: he just looks much more serious about things this time around, his goofy grin a thing of the past. Down in the maegashira ranks, Tokitenku is also 7-0, but that’s just a bunch of smoke and mirrors.

In the meanwhile, spring has arrived in Chicago (never mind those snowflakes falling outside the window as I write these words). I celebrate by listening to Minnesota Twins spring training games in the afternoon at my office. I’m pretty optimistic about the coming season, despite noises being made by local White Sox fans….

In the category, “It’s bloody well about time”: Universal betting on lower prices to boost CD sales.

Ray Davies continues to wow them on his current tour. reports that “Ray Davies rules on second night of SXSW.”

The coming week should be a hectic one for me. I’m in Philadelphia on Monday and Tuesday for the NCC 3D conference, then up to Princeton for the “Rethinking ‘Hihyo’: Postwar Literary Criticism and Beyond” workshop, then back down to Philadelphia on Thursday for the 2010 AAS Annual Meeting.

I leave you with the late Alex Chilton. I saw him play with the reunited Big Star seven or eight years ago at Royce Hall on the UCLA campus. It was a joyous occasion, especially when they covered The Kinks’ “‘Till the End of the Day.” Ray Davies dedicated that song to Chilton in his performance at SXSW this week (where Chilton had been scheduled to play) and spoke from the stage about how Chilton had visited him in the hospital after he was shot in New Orleans. A great songwriter and a wonderful voice: so long, Mr. Chilton.

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