[sumo] Chairman and Oyakata/Chiyo!
artist at aloha.net
Fri Sep 12 09:56:32 EDT 2008
> "... (Masurao) didn't have the heart of an assassin" in Lynn's memorable
Yes, Doreen, all these stories you mention and more went thru my mind as I
wrote to the list last night, but I left out the 'dirt', both figurative
and actual, as these stories are known within the sumo word, but in some
cases exagerrated or not provable. And as one of the 'greatest; I believe
he has the right to KNOW he is great and act that way sometimes- it is
more often with an impish grin, a poke of humor- he knows when he is being
obnoxious, and if ya can't takes it- ya gets out of the pool.
In my career I have worked with very famous boxers and baseball players,
actors... some of whom are incredibly humble and 'plain' face to face, but
some are full of themselves, with that same knowing 'look', as if to say-
hey I can get away with this- and I have to agree. In the sumo world,
sophistication and understanding are severely lacking, and jealousy is
rampant. Chiyo is above that! But his cross to bear is that he has to live
with it, and does the best he can. He is getting the short end of things
too often because of it,and to the decided detriment of the Kyokai, that
is not smart and open minded enough to avail itself of this bright and
It is true that all the Oyakata attached to Kokonoe beya left to join
Hakaku beya, leaving Chiyo to man a huge and newly build ship alone- a
daunting project. He is disliked by many, but not only/always for his
personality traits, but out of rampant jealousy. I would not have
personally been able to asses that years ago, but learned it from the
gyoji, yobidashi, and long time trusted sumo reporters from whom I gained
valuable on-going insight.
During my 20 years sitting in the dressing room, the last 13 next to
Chiyo, I well remember after the 'hazing' atrocity of Hokutenyu's younger
brother. The ozeki, assigned his place in the dressing room next to
Yokozuna Chiyonofuji, sat every day, basho after basho with his back
squarely facing the Yokozuna , the height of disrespect. In fact, I did a
painting of that.
But the jury is terminally out on whether Chiyo was there or not during
the - they say he was not- said that at that time, and I believe it.
Many, many years ago (before Chiyo was out of the no-face ranks) I was
witness to such horrendous rikishi bashing that I had to look down at
the tatami- I could not watch. I was very young then and was afraid to
leave, as I felt it would be a comment that I was not in a position to
make. But is was excrutiating. Thus, there has been an element there
that does this- not new when Hokutenyu's bro was done, not mny years
later. Both episodes( and how many more?) when Kitanofuji was Kokonoe.
SUMO artist, commentator and staunch supporter
> But Chiyonofuji did, and, regardless of how nice he may be socially,
> it was his razor-sharp reputation in the sumo world, rather than the envy
> of others, that hindered his
> progress. When his junior, yokozuna Hokutoumi, hived off to set up
> Hakkaku-beya, it was remarked that
> everybody in Kokonoe-beya who was free to move, moved out with him.
> If I recall correctly, it was when Hokutoumi was on the brink of juryo
> promotion that Chiyo 'encouraged' him
> at the end of a keiko session by rubbing a fistful of salt into his face.
> The hapless junior just stood there and
> took it, making no attempt to remove the salt from his mouth, nose and
> ears till his sempai had turned his attention elsewhere.
> needless to say he got his promotion, which put him above the level of
> physical abuse. There was also the case of Hokutenyu's
> younger brother who joined Kokonoe and who was hazed so badly that he was
> hospitalized. To protect Chiyo,
> who was already a valuable property,it was stressed that he had been out
> at the time -- though it was whispered by those closer to the event
> that he had in fact directed the beating. The youth quit sumo soon after
> coming out of hospital, and his brother, the Mihogaseki ozeki,
> declined to comment; but ever after, when Hokutenyu was matched against
> Chiyo, even in an unofficial event, we knew it would be a _really_ good
> Doreen Simmons
> jz8d-smmn at asahi-net.or.jp
> Sumo mailing list
> Sumo at webtrek.com
Lynn Matsuoka , described in the Japan press the "Degas of Japanese Sumo
and Kabuki", has also won awards for her hula reportage paintings in
Hawaii. Her Sumo artwork is in corporate and private collections around
the world, in of the Morikami Museum of Art and has recently been
requested by the Sumo Museum in Tokyo and Sapporo.
Visit our booth at the Hampton Classic Horse Show from August 24~ 31, 2008.
Web sites : http:// www.traditions.jp & www.hamptonsartist.com
Tel USA 808-479-5966 / NY studio 631-537-5237
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