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About Umebachi

  • Rank
    First Pancake

Personal Info

  • Country
  • Location
    Shuttling between Japan and Canada
  • Interests
    Dressage (equestrian), caring for horses, dogs, Kabuki, mathematics, philosophy and Social Mindfulness
  • Occupation
    Health Economist

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676 profile views
  1. Oh, Sota-kun, you did well, don't be too hard on yourself. He must have gotten a little tense/nervous for being in the first place, mentally challenging: his jumps didn't get the usual height. Just another learning experience, step by step!
  2. Roman has such a lyrical and graceful style. I hope he can stabilize his jumps and become one of the leading Canadian male skater. Canada needs a beautiful artistic skater on its team.
  3. Got back home just in time for the last group! Have been taking care of my very sick horse these last two weeks and haven't had the chance to watch much FS. My horse is getting a little better so I can start watching again, but have to rush back to give his second medication of the day when the Men's free skate ends. Good luck to Shoma-kun and Sota-kun! And to Voronov-kun!!
  4. Elvis Stojko refers to Yuzuru in discussing "Warrior vs Performer" in an interview with PJKwong, at 12'30". Thank you PJ and Elvis! "Hanyu has the perfect balance. He goes out there as the Warrior, and then performs. And does not have the Performer attitude first. If you have the Performer attitude first, you will get destroyed in competition, hands down. I've seen it all the time." - Elvis
  5. So it's costing me $300 plus for a round-trip flight from Victoria to Kelowna. This is within the same province. It's a big province - and a huge country (geographically speaking). And I was thinking, naively, about visiting friends who told me they live in the "interior" near Kelowna. Well, turns out their place is more than 4 hours drive from Kelowna. Next time I will fly to their place.
  6. This is getting a bit off topic, but I recall when YoI first came out, there was a discussion with the creator of YoI who mentioned that Yuri Katsuki has some characteristics reminiscent of Tatsuki Machida because she is a great fan of his. But even here there are only tangential similarities in their storyline (training in the US, etc.). Yuri Plisetsky is based on Lipnitskaya - with a gender difference. Ofc, Stephane plays Stephane. The YoI characters tend to make references to the generation of skaters before Yuzu. I am glad that YOI brought more people into FS world, but I don't see it making any specific reference to Yuzu, although many casual viewers may make that assumption. Perhaps YOI discussion could be continued on another thread?
  7. The article says Yuna came down with Strep infection in early August and she has been struggling with the other viral infections. At the US International it worsened again and she had to withdraw. When she returned to Japan she slept for 10 days continuously. She is finally feeling better but has not had much time to practice yet. Wishing her a strong recovery toward a successful season!
  8. Like others, I was trying to figure out why Daniel's movements were bothering me. His performance has improved significantly from last season and kudos to him for working so hard on his movements. Then someone pointed out to me that Daniel G kept his hands wide open almost constantly during his programme - like a lizard or a frog's feet - which is not quite natural for humans (whilst perhaps natural for the amphibians..?). Now that I notice his wide-open hands, I cannot unsee them... X0. Sorry, I don't mean any disrespect. I really like Daniel G and wish him all the best for a successful season - but please, dear coach, work on his hand movements!
  9. I suspect it's more than just one person that contributed to the moral harassment situation In the past year, there has been a large number of exposes in Japan of other major university sports clubs exercising power harrassment over coaches and athletes. There is an institutional culture in Japan that has allowed institutions to behave in a dictatorial fashion with little or no transparency and no avenue for complaints or whistleblowing. In such a context, the whole institution is complicit in undermining the voice one of one in order to protect/favor another. In the past, this culture was considered normal and condoned by the public. But today the Japanese public is showing strong aversion to these practices and the media is slowly becoming more willing to investigate into these allegations. Still quite timid though, and there may be some reluctance to confront major power houses like Kandai (short for Kansai Daigaku). BTW, it must really irk Kandai leadership that they have not been able to produce olympic champions despite their powerful position.
  10. No, don't feel sorry for me - I am one of the lucky ones who found a safe haven, and very grateful to Canada for giving me a lovely place to live. I want to give back to society by actively engaging in ways to bring light to such bullying behavior and creating a network of caring people across the world. This Planet is one important example of how we can start to heal this toxic world by spreading compassion and understanding. Yuzu is the guiding light. As you can see from this exchange, Team Japan faces many challenges but people like Yuzu and Nobu will be the hope and legacy to nurture the future generation of athletes.
  11. PM Abe appointed Hashimoto to the cabinet level position as Minister for the Olympics, so I consider him complicit in this. His administration does not pay attention to the mood of the people - they have tin-ears and assign positions based on the need to fill certain quota (satisfaying different factions within the Liberal Democratic Party). Under Team Japan there is a discussion on Nobu Oda's resignation from Kansai University - which is an extension of the toxic environment created by the JSF leadership. Back on topic, Yuzu is the one hope I have that he will be able to overcome this cabal of Japanese sports establishment that has for years fostered such a bullying culture. It's not only in Figure Skating - but perhaps someone with Yuzu's charisma as well as strategic intellect will be able to take over leadership position in the future. He will make an awesome Minister of Olympics, but more than that, he could lead our society towards a brighter future, with compassion and integrity as the foundation of our collective behavior.
  12. She was not disgraced. She remained president of JSF and now promoted to a cabinet level position. Sadly, it's one of the reasons why I have moved permanently to Canada. I know I should have stayed to keep up the fight, but I will have ended up a mental case or too angry to be helpful.
  13. I fully agree. We need to create an environment that will not condone such behavior. I was feeling encouraged that so many athletes in Japan were beginning to speak up, be heard and supported in their fight against bullying. At the same time the government remains totally tin-eared about the mood of the country: by appointing Hashimoto to head the Olympics, Abe admin shows that they are only thinking about increasing the number of women in the cabinet and not caring about the damage this would do in creating trust.
  14. As I noted earlier, Kansai University has powerful connections. The "Honorary Advisor" 名誉顧問 of the Kansai University Skating Club is no other than the recently appointed Minister of Olympics, Seiko Hashimoto. When I heard that she had been appointed to this important position, I felt a cold shiver run down my back. We have had a run of terrible appointments for the Olympics Minister - one of them was forced to resign because he made horrific comments about our top swimmer, Rikako Ike'e when she came down with leukemia. Hashimoto is a fan of Daisuke Takahashi (there are photos of her forcing a kiss on Takahashi - talk about harrassment!), and she also made cutting comments to Hanyu-senshu to his face when she was supposed to congratulating him for Sochi gold. I am deeply saddened. I was so looking forward to Tokyo 2020 events, but her appointment has already ruined the experience for me. I hope Nomura Mansai and Hanyu-senshu can find ways to exorcise the toxic spirits from the Olympics.
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