Guest Blog: Whole Foods: Asians at the Sushi Stand (orig: wholefoodsのこと)
Kumasaki-san has written a small piece on the phenomenon of hiring only people of Asian decent to work at the sushi stand at Whole Foods. If they had a soul food stand, would they hire only black people? There are all kinds of people at the middle eastern stand, and the pizza appears to be made by American of northern European decent, but, for some reason, sushi has to be made by “real” Asians, who, of course, AREN’T EVEN JAPANESE.
The post is in Japanese, which is OK for my Japanese friends. The rest of you can get your dictionaries out.
In the mean time, here is a serious analysis of sushi bar etiquette.
About Pete LarsonResearcher at the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research. Lecturer in the University of Michigan School of Public Health and at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. I do epidemiology, public health, GIS, health disparities and environmental justice. I also do music and weird stuff.
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The instructional video was the best thing I’ve seen on Japanese etiquette since that Itami Juzo film about noodles — I’m so embarrassed that my hand has been at the wrong angle when pushing aside the 暖簾 all these years! I’m also embarrassed that my species is still so hung up on minor genotypic and cultural variation. I’m not sure whether that, or the ubiquitous practice of hiring “fake Japanese” (i.e. any Asian will do) is more disappointing. Ugh.
Where I live there is a restaurant that purports to be “New Orleans style” cuisine and which is owned and operated by a Taiwanese family. The menu is indistinguishable from that of your typical Chinese buffet, and yet each dish has some sort of New Orleans-esque name appended to it, such as “Bourbon Chicken,” and “Cajun Dumplings.” Perhaps not germane to the topic at hand, but then again, it may provide perspective.