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I did not know this: Beijing has been home to one of three Chinese Hooters restaurants since 2008.
The LA Times ran a piece before the weekend describing the thriving franchise locations, and noting the significance of their success in a sexually confused China.
Author Lily Kuo wonders if the ladies in orange short-shorts might actually be ushering in a powerful new kind of sexuality for China’s micromanaged population, allowing them a “clean,” safe, “family” experience that emboldens young and enticing females:
On the scale of China’s sexual evolution, Hooters lands somewhere between a wink and a smile. Unthinkable two decades ago, the restaurant promotes a playful kind of sexuality different from the country’s seedy massage parlors and hostess bars, and yes, it serves the chain’s famous wings too.
The restaurant may be another example of globalization in China, but it’s also a snapshot of changing attitudes toward sex in a country full of contradictions. Gone are the days when public displays of affection were frowned upon, although selected things remain off-limits.
It’s possible, she writes, that the popular Chinese Hooters locations might actually reflect a shift towards what Kuo calls “hot-girl economics,” where female sex appeal is the bargaining chip (American readers, you may, uh, be familiar).
All I know is that any time I’m sitting at a restaurant table and a goofy-grinned girl kneels down too close to ask me if I’d like to add some fish to my wing order, while wearing slippery nylons under polyester shorts and shoving her cans in my face, I get sad. I don’t get hungry.
And I’m pretty sure that feeling applies to both Chinese and American goofy-grinned girls in polyester shorts.
Filed under: Beijing Hooters, Creepy Restaurants, Disgrestaurants, Evolution, Eww, Family Restaurants, Female Exploitasian, Hooters, Hooters China, Hot-Girl Economics, Ick, Kneeling, Oh boy HooterzzZZzzzZz!, Sexuality, Shanghai Hooters, Short Shorts, The Importance of Cleanliness, Wings
Nobu Matsuhisa has done some remarkable things in the culinary world. He somehow convinced Americans to not only eat raw fish but to pay a pretty penny for it. Then he went on to make sushi an international cuisine; today, there are 24 Nobu restaurants around the world. In an interview I once did with him, I learned that he single-handedly introduced jalapeno farming to Japan because one of his signature dishes, the yellowtail sashimi with jalapeno, had become such a hit there. He has, needless to say, had a staggering global impact.
Nobu has the chance to change the way we eat once again, this time by taking Northern bluefin tuna, a critically endangered species of fish whose breeding stock the World Wildlife Federation estimates will be extinct by 2012, off his menus. Britain, France, and Monaco recently announced that they’ll support an international ban on the sale of Northern bluefin tuna. Yet the Nobu restaurant group, despite pressure from celebrities and from environmental groups, refuses to do this. The only concession they’ve made in this matter is to label bluefin tuna “environmentally threatened” on the Nobu London menu; none of the other Nobu restaurant menus carry such a warning (which woefully undersells the problem, anyway).
We’ll be the first to admit that we love us some bluefin tuna, especially the toro, or fatty belly, cut. We could eat it until we became human thermometers. But this fish is facing extinction. As a culinary innovator, Nobu could set a powerful example by removing Northern bluefin off his menus. There are, as the saying goes, so many other fish in the sea. And Nobu doesn’t just cater to tastes, he creates them. Once upon a time, fine diners used to think that raw fish was disgusting and slimy, yellowtail coupled with jalapeno and cilantro incompatible, and uni, or sea urchin, about as appetizing as baby poo, and now, we’ll pay $20 a plate for that shit. People adapt. The overfished Northern bluefin cannot, however, unless people like Nobu help lead the way.
Miley Cyrus took her fat face and creepy model boyfriend to Koi last night for some mediocre pseudo-sushi, apparently keeping her Blackberry close all night to Twitter constantly for her fans.
From Gossip Girls:
During the meal, Miss Cyrus let all of her Twitter fans know exactly how she was feeling, tweeting, “Eating sushi! Omgosh California Rolls are from heaven!!! Praise GOD!”
Now, that’s a tweet that we–had we been following the tween on Twitter–would have had to respectfully disagreet with via replytweet @mileycyrus (sorry, this is confusing for me twoo, I mean twoot, I mean–). Here’s the deal: California rolls are baaaarely sushi, and–as I learned from Jen after she did months of research with a multitude of our fine city’s famed sushi chefs– borne from Los Angeles and not “heaven.”
Miss Miley followed up her food epiphony with another insider nugget of info:
“My waiter at Koi looks like dude from HGTV! Is it weird if I ask for an autograph?”
Maybe we would just…say something…
@mileycyrus you aren’t talking about vern yip, are you?
@mileycyrus maybe he’z not asian, maybe just has a goofy face
@mileycyrus oh u must mean the other dude on hgtv, eric stromer? hot! http://tinyurl.com/blargh345
@mileycyrus u can make your face look thinner if u tilt it slightly
KARATE LADY: Like this?
KEANU: Shake it like a polaroid picture!!
KARATE LADY: Where did you say you learned this again?
KEANU: Ibiza. No, on the set of Matrix: Reloaded.
KARATE LADY: I liked that film.
KEANU: Nobody liked that film, China.
KARATE LADY: I think your accountant did.
KEANU: You’re goddamned right he did.
KARATE LADY: I can’t believe I’m dating Keanu Reeves.
KEANU: Yeah you are! Did Marky Mark ever have pecs like these?
KARATE LADY: Well, I mean, he had pecs. What happened to you?
KEANU: What do you mean?
KARATE LADY: I mean…
KEANU: I’ll tell you what I mean: you’re so beautiful, of course I’ll go out with you. Look at you. You look like a little china doll, China.
KARATE LADY: Actually, powder pecs, if we’re assessing porcelain skin and bones, you’re the china doll here. I look tall and tan and young and lovely.
KEANU: (confused) That’s cool.
KARATE LADY: (confused) Okay.
KEANU: So when do we get to go eat together at Mr. Chow? I love his noodles.
KARATE LADY: Uh yeah, me too.
KEANU: Do you think I should call him “Dad?” or “Mr. Chow?” or “Mr. Dad?”
KARATE LADY: Um, I think I’d prefer a salad at La Scala.
KARATE LADY: Yes, always.
KEANU: Hunh. Okay. Wanna learn a different dance?
KARATE LADY: Sure… (sighs) Are you going to be filming a new Matrix sequel anytime soon?
KEANU: I dunno… Why is everybody always asking me that?
TMZ reports that Hollywood’s Geisha House, a Disgrestaurant with bad sushi fusion that Jen and I unfortunately have to drive by on a daily basis, is currently being sued by former employee Darnell Davis.
The story unfolds:
Darnell Davis says he hauled his cookies from Atlanta to LA after a manager from Geisha House offered him a gig. He says when he got to town and another manager saw he was black, he was told no jobs were available. It was only after he says he forced the issue that he was hired. During his employment, Davis claims GH management made numerous racial comments and jokes around him, then ultimately fired him because of the color of his skin.
Dolce Group has, of course, denied the accuasasians, dismissing Davis as a disgruntled employee. Y’know, like Scott McClellan!
We’ve got the perfect solution for everyone, and it’ll save plenty of time in court. Just level the place! At least we’ll be happy.
Celebitchy reports that Yoko “Ono I Don’t Love Money, I Love John” Ono’s attorneys have contacted metal singer/songwriter Lennon Murphy (which is the name on her birth certificate, though she goes just by the first), mandating that she stop using the name “Lennon” or face a legal attack.
Yikes. Does this happen to people named Porsche and Mercedes and McDonald’s and Frappuccino, too?
Lennon writes on her MySpace blog:
“Ono filed what is for the most part a law suit with the Trademark and Trial Board of the US Patent & Trademark office this past week… Yoko waited 8 years until 2 days before the statue of limitations ran out to file this complaint. 5 lawyers including 2 trademark experts we have spoken with agree that Yoko has no grounds for these claims and is just trying to push Lennon around and make her spend money she doesn’t have. Yoko seeks to gain the rights to the Trademark ‘LENNON’ which Lennon Murphy has owned since 2003.”
O-no! This situation looks so bad that even Julian “Forgotten” Lennon has jumped on board to show his support.
“In a blog entry titled “Sad but True & interesting ……….. I feel for her & know the situation well,” Julian Lennon posts a message from Lennon, the female rock singer, and says that the girl has his ‘full support.’ In an earlier version of the blog entry, which Julian has since edited, he prefaced Lennon’s statement by saying that he’s had his own legal run-ins with Yoko over the years and that if ‘she could have stopped me from working using my own legal name, she would have.’”
Yoko sure means business. Lennon business, that is. It sure does make me wonder what would happen if Ono paid this much attention to her own name?
Last Friday, we reported on the opening of Suzie Wong’s, a downtown NY restaurant where the servers were originally slated to dress like geishas until someone must’ve told them that that idea is fuckin’ lame. Looks like the Disgrestaurant is taking things in another direction with…
This particular Suzie Wong got all up in actor Djimon Hounsou’s grill during Friday night’s Baby Phat party at the restaurant:
Filed under: Baby Phat, Disgrestaurants, Djimon Hounsou is Goooooood Lookin' But Keeping Rather Poor Company, Drag Queens, Geishas Are Tired, Kimora Lee Likes to Fight, Plain Ol' Phat, Suzie Wong Must Die
A new Disgrestaurant/club opened last night on West 27th in New York called Suzie Wong’s, named, we presume, for the infamous Hong Kong hooker with a heart of gold.
Although earlier buzz on the 4,000 square foot, bottle-service club promised waitresses dressed as geishas, Suzie Wong’s has since scratched that idea. Those fretting that they might not get the full Ornamental experience here (e.g. fits of covered-mouth giggling, tiny women mincing about in feet-binding shoes, massage with release) sans geishas need not worry. According to New York magazine, Suzie Wong’s offers Geisha and Madame Butterfly cocktails, as well as a four dim sum-variety Love U Long Time platter! Now that’s what we call some pan-Asian conflasian!
And guess who’s throwing a party there tonight?
We wish we could say we’re surprised, but…sigh…we’re just not.
Anyone that knows me or Jen also knows of my our ridiculously deep and loyal devotion to the understated hole-in-the-strip-mall sushi mecca, Katsu-Ya (the original) of Studio City, CA. Because the room seats only about 6 and a half people, you typically spend about 45 minutes waiting in the crowded front area of the tiny room, killing a bottle of Sapporo on the indoor steps as if you were at a college apartment party, or shivering outside while eying the goods at the neighboring pet store and Domino’s Pizza. But after you finally take a seat, the superior gifts that arrive on your table make it all worth the wait, the dinky ambience, the hour in line, the fact that the waitress hit you with the Specials menu easel. Katsu-Ya is a bit like heaven. I was bummed when new, chic, Katsu-Yas started popping up all around town. Philippe Starck designed each to feel more like lounges than restaurants. Still, it meant that Jen and I could get salmon sashimi with caviar or baked crab rolls within 10 minutes regardless of where in Los Angeles we were, and even if that meant dining while surrounded by fish novices, that was a good thing.
Anyone that knows me or Jen also knows of my our ridiculously deep and loyal devotion to the understated hole-in-the-strip-mall sushi mecca, Katsu-Ya (the original) of Studio City, CA. Because the room seats only about 6 and a half people, you typically spend about 45 minutes waiting in the crowded front area of the tiny room, killing a bottle of Sapporo on the indoor steps as if you were at a college apartment party, or shivering outside while eying the goods at the neighboring pet store and Domino’s Pizza. But after you finally take a seat, the superior gifts that arrive on your table make it all worth the wait, the dinky ambience, the hour in line, the fact that the waitress hit you with the Specials menu easel. Katsu-Ya is a bit like heaven.
I was bummed when new, chic, Katsu-Yas started popping up all around town. Philippe Starck designed each to feel more like lounges than restaurants. Still, it meant that Jen and I could get salmon sashimi with caviar or baked crab rolls within 10 minutes regardless of where in Los Angeles we were, and even if that meant dining while surrounded by fish novices, that was a good thing.
Last night, because I couldn’t get the idea of a baked crab roll out of my head, I suggested Katsu-Ya in Hollywood for a post-debate nosh. Being the giving woman that I am, I skipped up ahead with one person in tow to get the party a table. I walked up to the doorman. (A doorman at Katsu-Ya? Only in Hollywood.) How long would the wait be for a table?
Nothing til’ 11pm, said the doorman.
Errrr-okay, I responded, and began making my way in to give the hostess my name.
Nope, said the doorman, don’t put your name down, just um, come back then.
(What? Guess Hollywood kicks ass but won’t take names.)
At this point, the rest of my friends walked up, the party total now at eight. One is an actor, and said to the doorman with a grin, can we get a table in there?
Of course sir, said the stupid fat ugly mean awful not-Asian doorman, right this way. He proceeded to lead the party in, setting us up for non-sake drinks in a room filled with candelabras before taking us to a private table loaded up with Omakase.
(I hate that doorman. I hate Hollywood.)
My pal R.J. leaned over to me as we were seated in the private room by a bunch of young, blonde waiters: “Hoooo boy. Katsuya didn’t know they were dealing with DISGRASIAN!”
He was right. I started to formulate the scathing words that I would share with my faithful readers in mere hours. How disgusted I was with this plastic city and its ability to ruin wonderful understated things, its willingness to bastardize perfection by getting Philippe Starck to mount oversized photos of smeared geisha lips and playing loud acid jazz until midnight. In what world does a sushi empire say no to a fun, cuddly Asian sushiphile and yes to some guy that happens to be in movies sometimes?
Then I took a bite of a pristine soy paper crab roll, followed by a glug of cold booze, and forgot every word.
(We all become hypocrites in Hollywood.)
Like many of you, DISGRASIAN made New Year’s Resolutions for ’08. Some of these resolutions are diet-related, about cutting back our consumption of certain things. Some are about getting rid of bad relationships. Some are focused on eliminating negative thoughts. They’re probably just like yours in one way or another, only we call them New Year’s Resolasians. Of course, resolasians, like resolutions, are meant to be broken, and ours are kinda contingent upon other people, but keep your fingers crossed for us, anyway, will ya?
No more Buddhist Prayer Hands.
No more Fisting.
No more Mutasians.
No more Bad Fuck Charms.
No more Disgrestaurants.
No more Chinysteria.
No more Engrish as “news”.
No more Gongbangin’.
No more Racial Drag.
No more Samurites.
No more White Hooker Boots.
No more Drive-Bis.
Have a great ’08 everyone!
A newer better DISGRASIAN
I don’t get shit fetishes. I really don’t. In fact, I’m not so into shit (go ahead, psychoanalyze away), period. I’m one of those people who NEVER checks mine out before I send it down cuz it’s brown. I don’t care if it floats. I don’t care if I’m getting enough fiber. I could, pardon the pun, give two shits if it has an interesting shape.
So that’s why I really don’t get this new restaurant in Taipei, called “Modern Toilet,” where the chairs are shaped like toilet seats and they serve up yummy piles of this stuff: