"working on my faults and cracks..."


Tai-Bo: The "Re-Embiggening"

I hate Billy Blanks.

Why an internationally acclaimed karate master whose sole purpose in life was to chop throats, dragon-punch taints, and pimp slap old men in hospital beds, settled for making obnoxious and demeaning "tai-bo" training videos, is apparently beyond my comprehension. Also beyond my comprehension (and in no particular order) are: Spaghetti-O's, Docomo's keitai mail rates, hot women that work at post offices, donut holes, "Oh-no" Sensei's vampire white skin, and lastly, how in god's name Billy Blanks has recently gotten so riotously popular here in Japan. His videos are sold-out everywhere. His television appearances are record-breaking. His parodies and imitators are revolting. His pectoral muscles are up for voting on UNESCO World Heritage panels.
This is pure, unadulterated horseshit.

He is omnipresent.

When his videos aren't being hocked on the streets, and advertised in DVD store windows, his asshat grin is all over the television screen. Even when it's not Billy himself, other Japanese people are talking about him, imitating him, and basically worshipping the ground he pretends to "box" on.
I am often asked about "Billy." Usually, to what inane degree my devotion entails--as if we (myself, and the entire country of Japan) all share the same fevered obsession with sweaty black men. But today, I was asked if I could find the "Billy's Boot Camp" theme song to use for our sports day next week. Evidently to get the kids pumped up, and kicking and punching in ridiculous calorie burning synchronization. Instead, I gave her Black Eyed Peas, and told her it was the same message, just different brand of Ebonics.
That part was probably lost in translation. So I bowed and apologized in solemn recompense.

Speak of the devil. Gym teacher is watching the hated "boot camp" video behind me on his laptop at this very moment. Almost as though the malevolent forces of irony are throwing a wild rave--right here, in this sweaty Okayama teacher's room.

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