I sure as heck didn’t realize that the MLB season started yesterday, did you?  Well it did…for two teams at least. To my surprise, yesterday, when I was clicking around the interwebs, I saw a box score showing that Seattle beat Oakland, 3-1, and now is the only team in baseball with a win because that game was a regular season game. Like a full on regular season win. In March.


Oh, see, Bud Selig, in all his genius,  thought that this year would be the fourth time in history that the Major League Baseball season should open up in Japan. They call the series the “Season Opener” (not exactly the same ring as Opening Day but who am I to complain, huh?) and the first game wasn’t even nationally televised, unless you count MLB’s own cable network MLBN if you happened to be lucky enough to have it and to be able to skip work and tune in at 9am on Wednesday. To be honest, i’m not even sure if they advertised this game anywhere because I sure as heck didn’t see anything for it.

I mean, I am all for spreading the game of baseball around the world and yes, the Mariners are owned by a Japanese company (Nintendo) but c’mon, shouldn’t the first game of the 2012 season have a little bit of fanfare  and especially be in its country of origin? ESPN’s own website still has a countdown to MLB’s Opening Day for crying out loud.  How can we have Opening Day now that the season is already WIDE FRIGGIN OPEN? No other American sport starts its season out this way and I would venture to say there is a BIG reason for that…because it is stupid.

Oh and what else makes little sense about this series? The games are considered home games for Oakland, aka “The team not owned by a Japanese corporation“, aka “The team  no one in the crowd is rooting for because they are not owned by a Japanese corporation and are without a national hero in Ichiro that the entire crowd loves and reveres“,  meaning they lose two home games in Oakland this season.

Yeah that is fair, huh? Couldn’t make this imaginary home series for Oakland an imaginary home and away series for both teams? Just to even things out a little? Just a little?  No, no of course not, that would make WAY too much sense.

Then again, I don’t often expect MLB to make much sense anymore…I mean home field advantage is still tied to a stupid All-Star game.  Ugh.  Now, there is a whole other rant…



Who wants to ride a giant penis?

Its almost time for the Hodare Festival peoples! That’s right, this is the sacred time of the year, every year, where people in Japan hold festivals that are all about  touching and riding a giant wooden penis.  By doing so you’re supposed to get good luck or marital bliss.  Sounds reasonable huh? America needs more festivals that are all about fertility and stuff, at least more than the AVN Awards (NSFW).

Why are we posting it here?  Really its just a reason for us to post this picture of a giant wooden phallus.  HOORAY AMERICA!


In Japan, Baseball News Travels Incredibly Slowly

The Red Sox-Yankees rivalry is sooo 2004. The teams haven’t faced each other in the playoffs since that fateful ALCS with each winning a World Series since then. The main protagonists in the rivalry are all gone: Curt Schilling, Jason Varitek, Alex Rodriguez, Pedro Martinez, and Jorge Posada are now retired or overpaid non-factors (Hi, Alex!). Theo Epstein, Tito Francona, and Joe Torre have all moved on. The last few seasons have cemented the Texas Rangers and Tampa Bay Rays as highly-successful franchises who can knock-off either team. Yet, this is news to Bobby Valentine. Evidently, they don’t air “Baseball Tonight” in Japan: Read the rest of this entry

Whamp! Whamp! The U.S. women’s soccer team shit the bed against Japan in penalty kicks at the conclusion of the Fifa Women’s World Cup finals in Frankfurt, Germany, surely easing some of the hurt for the nation after the horrific Fukushima daichi nuclear disaster on March 11. Despite this loss, your humble correspondent is not upset by the result. After all, Japan is a terrific nation, with weird, Japanese animation porn, and samurai swords, not to mention sake, and I think robots. They need our support. What? Yes, of course I’ve been to Japan before! I don’t just write about things I know nothing about, you know!

I guess what I’m saying is, it’s just soccer, not a real sport. Women’s soccer at that.

New Sport: Bo-Taoshi

Super awesome cool, boss! Another day, another bizarre sport from Japan. Unfortunately this one doesn’t involve weird porn fetishes. Just large groups of military cadets beating each other up over a pole. Hmmm this is exactly what those conservatives are worried about with the demise of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”.

Bo-Taoshi (Pole pull-down) is played by cadets at Japan’s National Defense Academy. The game itself, which consists of 150 people and a pole, is quite simple. 75 men have to defend their team’s pole while the other 75 try to take it down by any means necessary. This much is clear. The rest of our information comes from Google translations of Japanese pages so don’t blame us if we don’t have it down.

The game seems to have been first played in 1954-55. The pole doesn’t have to hit the ground completely. It only had to go down 45 degrees until 1973 when the rules were changed to force teams to drop it to a 30 degree angle. One can only assume the losing team has to commit seppuku in front of the spectators. There is no honor in losing. Forgiveness please!