Kelea, of whom in the past the bards of Oahu and Maui loved to sing, was the beautiful but capricious sister of Kawao, king of Maui, who in about A.D. 1445, at the age of twenty-five, succeeded to the sovereignty of that island.
No sport was to her so enticing as a battle with the waves, and when her brother spoke to her of marriage she gaily answered that the surf-board was her husband, and she would never embrace any other.
King David Kalakaua, The Legends and Myths of Hawaii (Tuttle edition), pages 229 and 231.
The renowned Cresta Run in St Moritz is one of the few sledding tracks in the world devoted solely to the perilous and terrifying sport of sledding head-first, or as it's appropriately named, skeleton. Women have been banned from the track since the 1920s, though some still manage to get in a run.
Japanese director Yuya Ishii has made a film about the Vancouver Asahi, the championship baseball team drawn from Vancouver's Japanese-Canadian community between the wars. It stars Satoshi Tsumabuki, and was filmed in Japan, with Ashikaga doubling as 1930s Vancouver.
This robust woodcut can be found opposite page 204 in volume 1 of A.B. Mitford, Tales of Old Japan published in 1871. Mitford writes in his Preface:
For the illustrations, at least, I feel that I need make no apology. Drawn, in the first instance, by one Ôdaké, an artist in my employ, they were cut on wood by a famous wood-engraver at Yedo, and are therefore genuine specimens of Japanese art.
I wish he had named the famous engraver. As for Ôdaké, there were a couple of well-known artists, Odake Kokkan and Odake Chikuha, in the following generation. Is Mitford's one their father?
Today is Vasaloppet, the annual 90 kg cross-country ski race between Sälen and Mora in Dalarna, Sweden. It commemorates a legendary escape made on skis by the future King Gustav I in 1520. When you win the Vasaloppet a local young person in folk costume chases you down the home stretch and plays ring toss with a large wreath and your head. Or tries!