Saturday, November 22, 2008
USA VS. JAPAN
For the past month or so I have been planning an organizing a ASIJ ELC RUGBY NIGHT for my school and parents. It started out as just a notice to see who was interested and it turned into this great big community function. I decided that since so many people were interested I could make it a step better. So, I designed a Japan, USA Rugby Jersey just for the special night. While living here I have met some quality people but by far the best has been a good friend named Eijero or AJ and his manager Ai (pronounced I ). They have shown me some finer sides of Tokyo that I could never have seen without them. But, that is another blog. Anyway, AJ has a printing company that happens to make Rugby Tops. So, with Ai and I's design we came up with the design and it turned out great.
Heading into the match we had a little over 90 people all together and the response from everyone was "this was a great night". It truly was. The US team jumped out to a quick lead with in the first 2 minutes of the game and looked to be the dominating team on the field. It would last too long. Japan answered with a try of their own and the score was tied at 5. Japan kept putting on the pressure as well as US. Lots of quick kicks and fast players cutting through the lines and next thing you know, Japan is up two tries. The Japanese team is not that big but they are fast. Japan went on to win completing the sweep of the American team on tour to Japan. Tough loss but still a good match to be apart of.
After the match was over we searched for a close bar but ended up going back to Roppongi to Legends for some beers. We had about 12 people all together and sat down for a good time. So here I was in a bar with a bunch of my parents from my class. Now, this does not happen in the US. I remember avoiding them but now I enjoy hanging out with them and having a good time. After a few rounds of drinks and them buying me beers in walks the USA Rugby team. Leading the pack was Todd Clever and man this guy is big. Check out this big hit he puts on this guy. I would not want be taking this one.
There were quite a few of the other players out too Chad Erskine, Mike MacDonald, Shawn Pittman, Gavin DeBartolo and several others. We kicked back grabbed some beers and watched Australia and England play. Being around the world class athletes was pretty amazing. This is one of those times when you realize that living over seas is a great thing and teaching in Japan has allowed me to meet some pretty amazing people. After a couple rounds of drinks and hearing a couple of stories about their travels I remembered I had a jersey that was made special for this match. I pulled it out and had them sign it. It was a nice reward for me to have after planning this social function for the past month.
They were so impressed with the jersey that they asked to have some made and sent to them. So looks like I will have to get on that. I don't mind giving them away either.
Hopefully it will build some kind of friendship and get a chance to see them again. Good group of guys and definitely a fun bunch to be around. I wish I could have went to the next place with them. I must say that yesterday was the best day I have had in Tokyo. Good rugby, good beer and good times. Hard to beat that with a bat. Farewell and talk soon.