This is Nicholas A. Ferrell, editor and administrator of The New Leaf Journal, reporting on the week that was at our humble magazine in the 29th edition of our official newsletter, The Newsletter Leaf Journal. If you are receiving this newsletter in your inbox or RSS reader, we thank you for subscribing. If you found it through other means, we hope that you consider subscribing.
We published five articles since I last reported to you. Below, I will summarize our content from the past week with links.
All sumo wrestlers are members of sumo wrestling stables. These stables are run by a stablemaster. The stablemaster is something like a coach, but he is also responsible for directing the careers of his charges in a way that coaches in most other sports are not. All stablemasters are retired sumo wrestlers.
In order to be a sumo wrestler, one does not need to be a Japanese citizen. However, in order to become a stablemaster, the candidate must have Japanese citizenship.
Over the past several decades, a growing number of foreign-born sumo wrestlers have reached the top ranks of the sport. Since 1993, six of the nine sumo wrestlers to have reached the top rank of yokozuna are from Mongolia and the United States.
The stablemaster citizenship requirement creates a difficult situation for foreign-born sumo wrestlers who seek to become stablemasters after retirement. As I noted in a January article, Japan generally prohibits dual citizenship. Thus, if a non-Japanese citizen wants to become a stablemaster, he must renounce the citizenship of his or her country of nationality in order to become a Japanese citizen. This makes it difficult, if not impossible, for many top wrestlers who want to continue their careers in sumo after retirement to do so.
In my Sunday Around the Web post, I examine the background of the stablemaster citizenship requirement, the effect of foreign stablemasters on sumo over the past several decades, and the debate over whether the rule should remain.
I needed to find a picture for my sumo wrestling article. Due to the pandemic, I have not been able to fly over to Japan to see as many sumo wrestling tournaments as I usually do.
(I have never been to Japan.)
I performed a search for sumo wrestling pictures with Creative Commons Search. This tool searches for images that are marked as being available for reuse and allows for narrowing searches by license. To my surprise, I found a decent number of sumo pictures from a recent tournament in the public domain. The source? In 2019, former President Donald Trump attended the May Grand Sumo Championship as a guest of former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. The White House took many pictures of the event. All the pictures are in the public domain. You can see Mr. Trump and Mr. Abe in the background of the featured image I chose for the article. Below, you will find Mr. Trump handing the President’s Cup to Asanoyama, who won the tournament with a record of 12-3.
Cameras were made for moments like this.
Victor V. Gurbo returned with his newest Quarantine Session, this time covering Hank Williams’s You Win Again. In this cover, the usual duo of Victor and Mark Caserta are joined by fellow-NYC musician Kathryn Williams. Along with the music, you will find an interesting essay where Victor works to separate Hank Williams facts from friction.
Victor posted his sketch of Hank Williams to accompany the content.
I was surprised when I saw Victor’s drawing. Most of Victor’s drawings are somewhat terrifying. I am not sure I had ever seen him draw a person with only two eyes. But there, staring at you, is a realistic portrayal of Hank Williams with two eyes. The scales fell from my eyes, that’s for sure. All jokes aside - I think Victor’s drawing makes for one of our more aesthetic article thumbnails.
Some little things bother me. One of those things is when someone calls for the impeachment of a member of Congress. Even though the New York Post likely did so sarcastically, many people misuse “impeachment” seriously. What does that have to do with former NBA player Roy Hibbert? One would think nothing. But I somehow brought some very disparate topics together.
I was not feeling great in the middle of the week. For that reason, I needed some quick content to post for Thursday. Who else to turn to than my fictional dialogue duo, Justin and Justina? What could they do with my picture of a fallen truck route sign? Read on to find out.
Near the end of my dialogue, Justin tries to convince Justina to take the fallen truck route sign home because signs make for hip home decor. She almost falls for it. That idea derives from a visual novel series that I discussed once on site - Higurashi: When They Cry. There is a character in the Higurashi series named Rena Ryuugu. She spends hours going through a land fill and finding “cute” things to take home. Her tastes are a bit odd - she becomes obsessed with a discarded Colonel Sanders mascot. Unlike Rena, however, Justina did not ultimately succumb to temptation. Perhaps it was because she only considered it because Justin insisted that other people would think she was trendy.
Dogecoin is the trendy cryptocurrency of the hour. I do not have any Dogecoin. When a friend asked me if I had been buying any, I made what I thought was a witty joke. Now I normally would not have turned my joke into an article, but the stars aligned when Newegg, a popular online electronics retailer, announced that it was now accepting payments in Dogecoin.
While I do not have Dogecoin, I do have about $36 worth of crypto. Well on my way to becoming a crypto billionaire. Where does my phenomenal wealth come from? Minds, a social media platform that I use to share content from The New Leaf Journal, and LBRY/Odysee, a blockchain-based YouTube alternative. We used the laatter to embed Victor’s video of his original song Mondrian, in his article on his composition.
Tuesday will mark the one-year anniversary of The New Leaf Journal. You can expect to see a special post commemorating the occasion. On Friday, I will publish our usual month-in-review post to wrap up April.
In between, I have a number of ideas to fill the week. I will definitely post a photography special that I have been planning all April. The photo shoot is happening today. I cannot say any more on the subject for the time being, however.
I came across an interesting episode of a show I watch offering what I thought was an interesting picture of how one may turn into Socrates. Because I referenced Epictetus’s quote about becoming a Socrates in my article on productivity, I decided to cover this episode as well. I will likely post the article this week.
Beyond that, I will decide what to publish this week based on how much time I have between my one-year anniversary and month-in-review posts.
Finally, I will be working on my new category structure for the site throughout the week. I hope to have that completed by the next newsletter.
Thank you as always for reading The Newsletter Leaf Journal and following The New Leaf Journal. It has been a great first year at the Journal, and I look forward to an even better year two. I will report back to you with new news next Sunday.
Cura ut valeas.