Shiai ’09

…or, Pat wears a suit.

We held our annu­al judo tour­na­ment (or shi­ai, pro­nounced “shee-eye”) on Sat­ur­day. We had about 60 com­peti­tors show up, in divi­sions from kids’ all the way to seniors (senior being any­one old­er than 16). There were only nine ref­er­ees, which meant that if you came to ref, you were work­ing all day.

This is because judo has three offi­cials on the mat for each match: the ref­er­ee and two cor­ner judges. We had two fight­ing areas run­ning, each one need­ing a min­i­mum of three peo­ple to offi­ci­ate. We wound up with a team of five peo­ple on Mat I and four on Mat II (my mat). What this essen­tial­ly meant, for me, was that I was on the mats for three out of every four bouts.

It was a suc­cess­ful day: the club made some mon­ey, we had a min­i­mum of injured com­peti­tors (the worst injury, by far, was a bro­ken arm), and after­wards we all went out for all-you-can-eat sushi.

Brandon Open shiai
I told you I wore a suit.