March 27th - Not a great photo, but the light was terrible as I headed home. This curious matt-brown box with a bright white light on top puzzles many folk heading east towards Chuckery on the New Ring Road in Walsall, just by Queen Mary’s School. It’s an environmental monitoring pod which takes climatic and and air quality measurements, and logs them. It features a host of sensors - the white light is a particulate analyser, shining light through the air and measuring the floating contaminants. There will be wind, temperature, humidity, and various chemical sensors humming away in what is actually a vehicle trailer. The triangular cowl on the front is covering the towing hitch.

This is a fairly expensive piece of kit, being used to tell us what anyone in Walsall already knows; the air quality here is terrible - particularly next to a badly designed junction where traffic is often static.

No shit, Sherlock.

February 13th - I see the new offices for Walsall Housing Group - the hived-off housing association that owns almost all of Walsall Council’s former social housing stock - are nearly finished. This inelegant, six and a half million pound edifice has undergone a protracted construction; the glass units forming the frontage were faulty and fogged up soon after placement, the manufacture being faulty. It’s notable that some panels are still cloudy. This ill conceived building seems to be fully lit at night, presumably at no small expense, and is completely devoid of public transport support. This could be considered an oversight considering WHG’s tenant profile.

That money would have built a lot of decent homes.

Road To The New Beginning Day 1 - 1/29/2016: Tanahashi In, Tonga Out; ROH 14th Anniversary Updates

Strong Style Story Podcast Episode 3 Now LIVE!

The Road to The New Beginning tour has begun, today coming from Saitama Tokorozawa Civic Gymnasium Sub-arena. Hiroshi Tanahashi did in fact wrestle today in the main event, an 8-man prelude before tomorrow’s 6-man send-off to Shinsuke Nakamura, despite reports of shoulder dislocation. Results:

  • Teruaki Kanemitsu TLD Hirai Kawato (10:00)
  • Yuji Nagata, Manabu Nakanishi, Tiger Mask IV & Jay White d. Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Satoshi Kojima, Jushin Thunder Liger & David Finlay Jr. (Nagata > Finlay, backdrop hold, 9:07)
  • Bad Luck Fale & Yujiro Takahashi [Bullet Club] d. Toru Yano & YOSHI-HASHI [CHAOS] (Fale > YOSHI-HASHI, Grenade, 8:57) 
  • Tetsuya Naito, EVIL & BUSHI [Los Ingobernables] d. Michael Elgin [ROH], Juice Robinson & KUSHIDA (EVIL > Robinson, EVIL STO, 11:29) 
  • Kenny Omega, “Machine Gun” Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows [Bullet Club] d. Togi Makabe, Tomoaki Honma & Captain New Japan (Omega > Captain, Running Knee, 11:05) 
  • Hiroshi Tanahashi, Hirooki Goto, Katsuyori Shibata & Ryusuke Taguchi d. Shinsuke Nakamura, Kazuchika Okada, Tomohiro Ishii & Gedo [CHAOS] (Goto > Gedo, Shoryu Kekkai, 18:59)

I did rather predict in the podcast (above and below!) that Kanemitsu and Kawato would probably be a 10-minute time-limit draw. Wonder if the match was worth anything? This is Kanemitsu and Kawato’s debut tour, having been given their first matches at the Grand Puroresu Festival on 1/3/2016.

The event card is somewhat different than what was advertised as well, with Tama Tonga being off the show. Perhaps due to injury, or difficulties traveling due to the winter storms that hit North America last weekend, or even contract status? He is off tomorrow’s show now, too, but is listed for 2/2/2016 moving forward. We’ll find out I’m sure.

Ring of Honor has now officially removed Shinsuke Nakamura from the line-up of the 14th Anniversary Weekend shows in Las Vegas, 2/26 and 2/27/2016. Like, where you guys been? We knew that weeks ago. ROH is stating there will be a replacement NJPW talent at the shows in Nakamura’s place, but have not said whom. Also, while it was known for a while from the tapings on 1/8/2016 in Charlotte NC, ROH have now made the Briscoe Brothers v. Michael Elgin & Hiroshi Tanahashi tag team match official as well. Elgin and Tanahashi first teamed during November’s World Tag League, and nearly won Block A from it too. Elgin is on this current tour too. ROH has caveated that Tanahashi’s status may change with the shoulder injury reports.

NJPW on AXS returns tonight, however I already blogged about that. 9pm EST/8pm CST on AXS TV.

Tomorrow’s show from Tokyo Korakuen Hall is pretty significant, as it’s the NJPW farewell to Shinsuke Nakamura, who will next appear in a ring on 4/1/2016 in Dallas at the WWE NXT TakeOver event that night. It will be shown live on NJPWWorld. Below is the updated card (to reflect Tama Tonga’s absence):

  • David Finlay Jr. v. Hirai Kawato
  • Jay White v. Teruaki Kanemitsu
  • Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Satoshi Kojima & Jushin Thunder Liger v. Yuji Nagata, Manabu Nakanishi & Tiger Mask IV
  • Toru Yano & Kazushi Sakuraba [CHAOS] v. Bad Luck Fale & Yujiro Takahashi [Bullet Club]
  • KUSHIDA, Ryusuke Taguchi & Captain New Japan v. Tetsuya Naito, EVIL & BUSHI [Los Ingobernables]
  • Togi Makabe, Tomoaki Honma, Michael Elgin [ROH] & Juice Robinson vs. Kenny Omega, “Machine Gun” Karl Anderson, Doc Gallows & Cody Hall [Bullet Club]
  • Shinsuke Nakamura Send-Off Match: Hiroshi Tanahashi, Hirooki Goto & Katsuyori Shibata vs. Shinsuke Nakamura, Kazuchika Okada & Tomohiro Ishii [CHAOS]