After a day of praising dictators and calling potential opponents “low IQ”, our large adult president concluded his evening by getting into a sumo wrestling ring and awarding an imposing man wearing very little clothing an extremely large trophy. Trump absolutely loved it.
That’s right: as part of his four-day trip to Japan, Trump watched sumo wrestling alongside Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at Ryogoku Kokugikan stadium in Tokyo and awarded the “President’s Cup” to sumo champion Asanoyama. The trophy was four and a half feet tall and weighed 60 pounds, according to the Washington Post.
“In honor of your outstanding achievement as sumo grand champion, I hereby award you the President’s Cup,” Trump said on stage, according to the Post.
“That was an incredible evening at sumo,” Trump said later. He concluded, simply: “Sumo wrestling.”
Other than his brief Twitter tantrum, Trump is loving his trip to Japan. He’s played golf with Abe, eaten cheeseburgers, and tried Japanese barbecue, or robatayaki.
This wasn’t Trump’s first time in a wrestling ring. Before he became our president he used to work for WWE, where in 2007 he “clotheslined WWE Chairman Vince McMahon and faux-pounded him, ringside, before shaving him bald in a viral pay-per-view moment,” the Post writes.
Trump apparently tried to give this almost certainly made up award the solemnity it deserved, a Mexican tourist who was at the match told the Post.
“He didn’t smile at all; he didn’t do any gestures,” Jaime Tiktin told the Post. “It was kind of strange to see him not moving his lips at all.”
“I think he was being respectful,” Tiktin, who doesn’t approve of Trump’s policies towards Mexico, said. “I hate to say that, but I think he was respectful.”
Trump’s appearance at the ring was created some problems for the stadium, which follows strict protocols. Those who are ringside traditionally sit on Japanese cushions called zabutons, but Trump was allowed to sit in a chair. Attendees sometimes throw their zabutons in joy or anger, which apparently concerned Trump’s security. One Japanese newspaper ran a story with the headline “Mr. Trump to watch the final day matches. Fear of zabuton.”
Some were offended that Trump got special treatment at the sumo ring. Tokyo resident Ryugo Kato told the Post that Trump should have had to sit on a cushion like everyone else.
“That’s the way this place is set up,” Kato told the Post. “He should respect the custom. It’s the culture.”
“If he wants to come, fine,” Kato continued. “There’s nothing wrong with watching the sport and paying some respect to Japan’s national sport.”
The sumo guy who got the big trophy seemed curious about Trump.
“I am going to check Wikipedia for Trump-san,” Asanoyama said before meeting him.
Afterwards, Asanoyama was probably almost as happy as Trump himself was to be giving someone a giant shiny prize in front of thousands of people, which is the only part he likes about being president, if we’re being honest.
“I was overjoyed,” Asanoyama told the Post. “It was almost too much to say in words.”