Durian, how sad I feel you. Although you're always the the most pompous, charming and sleazy one among a stack of ubiquitous fruits, you're always misunderstood.
But then again, so were Alexander the Great and Caesar. You see, interpretation of greatness is a way of life albeit the very fundamental appeal of supremacy is the lack of equals.
I know you better Durian. I know you! Although people always says mangosteen is the queen of fruits and you're the king. Ahem, truth be told, I've yet to hear any confession from a fan of mangosteen.
Durian, I know you. You're the Dugu Qiubai of fruits. Like Sherlock Holmes and Professor Moriarty, Hector Berlioz and Richard Wagner and, Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier, I'm the only worthy opponent who can save you from the solitude of invincibility.
"The appetite for globefish among Zhejiang people starts at the dawn of the Lantern Festival. It's always Jiangyin of Changzhou that gets the first catch. The premium grade are usually consumed by the riches and nobles as prime globefish is sold at a thousand coins. However, the price drops to merely a hundred coins a piece when captures increase significantly after February." ~ Shelin Sihua by Ye Mengde, Song Dynasty
I'll be blunt: having tried both globefish in China (braised) and fugu in Japan (sashimi), I really don't see what's the buzz. Maybe it's a bad day for the chef or maybe it's because I'm too thick to understand a myth that has been there since literally the Song Dynasty. But anyway, I think the article is very accurate when it says 95% of the globefish consumed these days are bred so eating it ain't no a risky business as it used to be. [via Chinadaily. Photo courtesy of Chinadaily]
In probably one of the most ambitious culinary projects ever,Kikunoi, Tankuma Kitamise and Uosaburo, the three kaiseki ryori stalwarts of Kyoto, are working together to create menu for the Murasaki restaurant at the Japan Industry Pavilion during the Expo 2010 Shanghai China.
But before you make that RSVP call, there are two things you need to bear in mind. First thing first, the pop-up restaurant is so popular that you'll need to book it two months prior despite a RMB3,000 (USD440) per head price tag. Second, make sure you with an Iron Man armor kit with you when you go. Because things can get nasty, really really nasty. [Photo courtesy of www.ifeng.com ]
For the very first time, this blog is writing an open letter to a restaurant. The honor goes to boss Wang of a Small Sea Big Teahouse in the Nanning city of Guangxi province, China.
Dear Boss Wang,
First of all allow me to express my sincerest congratulations to you and your team for putting off such a classy act of promotion stunt strategy. I mean, sweet Confucius, who would have thought this up but you, a man of the distinctive sophistication and vision? Giving discount to half-naked dudes and chicks in miniskirts?! Pure genius. 100% marketing gold.
I know that someone out must be sniffing at what you're doing. But man, please ignore them.
This dress less and pay less methodology is anything but a sign of decadence and moral deterioration. Quite the contrary, I take it a sign of advancement. It's totally the way it ought to be -- that's what dress code is for, right? More than anything, it shows to the world that we, as a nation, has come of age and that we have nothing to hide.
And you know what, I bet you're a patriotic Communist. Just when our faith to the Party is squandering because not a sane man in China can afford to buy house, you single-handedly managed to bring the faith back by telling us what is it all about socialism with Chinese characteristics other than a yellow ox leaving a dump of dang by the storefront of the Starbucks somewhere in Anhui. One step at a time, you show the world our true colors. You show us what is nudism with Chinese characteristics (富有中國特色的裸露主義). You're absolutely right. Is there anything in the world that's easier to understand than our own bodies?
Gosh, the scheme is all coming together:
Strangers and friends gathering to eat on a round table, classic scene for any, I mean any Chinese film.
Half-naked instead of full monty, it's a bit wishy-washy at first glance but in essence totally in line with the teachings from the Doctrine of the Mean (中庸之道). Either upper or lower but can't have it all. Just like Chairman Mao once said, "Either the east wind prevails over the west
the west wind prevails the east wind." Wow is the only word I can put for such Chineseque.
And then to say no materialism and to dress low? Man, that's a bull eye shot for the spirit of typical Chinese frugality.
Speaking of good spirit, we all know how pragmatic Chinese are. Eating in a sleep-like outfit really saves time for all of us -- we're going to get laidbed after dinner whatsoever, why not undress beforehand so that no one needs to second guess what everyone else is up to? Hello everyone, the first date with your lover at the restaurant please? Just imagine how much faster the night could wrap up if you were eating face to face in undies...
Boss Wang, you ARE such a brainiac!
But there's more, way more. You see what matters most among what matters most (重中之重) and you make it look so easy.
You not only show us how far far ahead of the game you are, you also let the world knows how much you care about our environment, which is a scarcity in China that's holy enough to get you beatification. The maths is simple: we dress less so that no one needs any air-con; go half-naked and have our hairless arms reflecting moonlight in the dark so that we don't need any illumination. What have we got here?
Zero CO2 emission, tada! Global warming is ended and world is saved in your hand. Boss Wang, I swear Noble prize is just around the corner waiting for you.
Boss Wang, there's so many more compliments I wanna say to you out of my chest but I think I'd better stop my gibberish here because you must be really busy with your operation. Anyways, keep up the good work!
p.s. If I were you, I would cut the table clothes back as well. Otherwise, there's no telling who's eating naked, right?