From Amateur to Professional, to Ninja

Tomonari Ishiguro: The Only Ninja That Matters


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The term “Ninja” has become a necessary addition to elite American job titles requiring a much higher degree of professionalism and performance than ordinarily required. Front End Web Developer (PHP Ninja), Sales Ninja, Information Security Ninja, CRM Ninja, Social Media Ninja, AV Software Specialist & IT Ninja, Javascript Ninja. Curiously, we even have Entry Level Ninja. And some aren't amused.

We could go on all day. But when you scratch the surface, whether the term seemingly being abused includes Gurus, Wizards, Ninjas, Rockstars, or Evangelists, it is abundantly clear what is in demand. These organizations, be they startups or MNCs simply want sensationally good performers/problem-solvers. Because perennially amateurish mindset doesn't scale.

Enter BLACK.

You just saw the entrance; the long, slow, very low customary Japanese bow. The lower the bow, the greater the deference intended.

President Obama was criticized for a similar gesture by culturally incompetent perennial critics when he met Japan's Emperor Akihito (infra). But that's neither here nor there. And then for those familiar with movies like The Last Samurai (a must-see), you hear for the next 3 minutes or so, that familiar Japanese-English accent as he prepares the audience.And what follows, suffice it to say, is a masterclass performance worthy of a true Ninja.

David Cooper once said something that seemed abstract. “The pro is the person who has all the hassles, obstacles, and disappointing frustrations that everyone else has. Yet continues to persist, does the job, and makes it look easy.” Watching BLACK without actually knowing his story, you'd think this is all easy. But the truth of the matter is behind the sensational performance you just witnessed is a long journey from nothing (not just low self-esteem) to thousands and tens of thousands of practice and dedication to his craft, Yo-yo.

To me, he is an influencer who “has invented countless tricks. His most well known trick is probably 'Black Hops' which is now used in compulsory 1A category at the World Yo-Yo Contest as well as many other contests throughout the yo-yo world. His tricks have a very noticeable and unique feel to them, with great flow and rhythm but still incorporating subtle and difficult moves. But BLACK has not just pushed his yo-yo technique, his performance style and ideas continue to push the boundaries in yo-yo competition.”

I don't know about you. But, precision, dexterity, passion, consistency of effort, impeccable work ethic, commitment to only the highest standards — something both observed and portrayed as a historical fact in The Last Samurai and witnessed by my own eyes every time I've visited Japan — as well as the ability to transcend professionalism and exceed expectations, offering a virtuoso performance with poise when it matters most.

That's my kind of Ninja.

That's what I want to use as inspiration this Winter as I work on difficult challenges. Sideshows? No time. So good luck to you. Let's get to work, if you share the same ideals.

○ ○ ○Highly Recommended(Follow the Dove)


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