Talking About Drinking on Television

Today Japan welcomed a new sumo champion, Goeido. It’s most interesting as in this tournament had he not done well he was going to be demoted. Well, he rose to the challenge and went 15 days undefeated. Bravo!

The television cameras were on Goeido just before the awards ceremony and the announcers filled in with some banter. Following is the conversation (that I could catch) between a former sumo wrestler, Mainoumi, and an announcer. I love that in Japan talking about drinking is normal and not shunned upon.

Announcer (A): 舞の海さん、Mainoumi-san…

Mainoumi (M):はい、Yes…

A: 豪栄道は酒飲むの? Does Goeido drink sake?

M: あ、飲みます。Yes, he drinks.

A: 飲むの? He drinks?

M: え、Yes.

A: あ、そう。。。Oh, really?

M:  気合が入ると良く飲みますよ。When he gets into it, he can drink a lot.

A: 今日は美味い酒は飲めます。。。I bet he’s going to drink really good sake tonight.

M: そうですね。Yes…

A: 遊びに行きたい。(it sounded like the announcer said that he wants to go over to Goeido’s celebration party this evening.)

I had to laugh when I heard this. Such a great commentary on how we approach drinking in Japan.

Congratulations to Goeido. The first time a sumo wrestler from Osaka has won in 86 years. Omedetou gozaimasu! I hope you are drinking very good sake tonight.

*** FYI, sake can refer to Japanese nihonshu (the fermented and brewed rice drink) or to any alcoholic beverage. However, as this is sumo, which is a very traditional sport, when the announcer asked if Mainoumi if Goeido drinks sake, I assume it means nihonshu.


6 Comments Add yours

  1. Helen says:

    He was brilliant. It seemed he was near to nears when he was being interviewed after the tournament yesterday. Very moving. Thanks for the sake story translation! We went earlier in the week; I do love sumo!

    1. Was it your first time to see sumo? I hope you went down and had a bowl of chankonabe. If not, be sure to do it next time you go!

  2. Janice says:

    Awesome! Thanks for sharing the story on Goeido’s perseverance. To the new champion, and to sumo, salud!

  3. Yes, great tournament!

  4. I just read this!
    Cringingly (is that a word) enough, Australian TV sports coverage goes completely the other way, with braggadocio about HOW much will be drunk by the Winning Team/Player and how “pissed” they may or may not get.
    Kind of embarrassing to be honest.

    1. Love it! Sounds very Australian to me. 🙂

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