Posted by Doug on December 5, 2008
The research did not go well: Googling real historical ninja gave me over nine thousand results, most of which were links to articles on video games, or forum discussions where extremely illiterate people who claim to have taken classes in ninjutsu (or alternatively, know someone who knew someone else who learned ninjutsu) talk about how über-cool ninja are, or otherwise less-than-scholarly treatments of the subject, where the level of discourse seems to be summed up by the ultimate argument for the existence of ninja: “ninjas were suposed 2 b stealthy and not be seen so of course their wood be know proof! The fact there is know proof proofs there existins!!!!!1!oneeleven!” (all tpyos as in original).
This led me to the inevitable conclusion: Who cares? Ninja are cool, end of story. It doesn’t matter if ninja are a complete fabrication, invented by a drunk salaryman in mid-1970s Bolivia for the purpose of convincing his soon-to-be-ex-wife he wasn’t completely sloshed—they would still be cool. Of course, ninja aren’t a complete fabrication, but I think it’s safe to say that no real-life ninja ever had a demon of any given number of tails sealed inside his or her body. Again, it doesn’t matter. The Rule of Cool dictates that things that are cool are inherently better than things that are real.
So, real historical ninja be damned, this is Ninja Day! I’ve got my all-black outfit neatly pressed, my ninjato is nice and sharp, and my collection of pointy objects suitable for throwing is all together. I’m going to go out on the town and try jumping from rooftop to rooftop. I’m hoping I can do so in true ninja style and not be seen, because otherwise I’m going to be spending some time in jail, like this guy (link no good, sorry).
Or in a hospital. That wouldn’t be good, either.