Friday, May 30, 2008

Capturing it from another angle

First of all, if you allow me a moment to be a little serious here, I in no way intend to make fun of the human tragedy that occurred with the earthquakes in the Sichuan area of China . My company has donated substantial dollar amounts of medical equipment as support and I know that my colleagues in China has been working round the clock to try and help as many people as possible with little thought to their own safety or comfort. That the Japanese government also reacted quickly in dispatching expert search teams and momentary help was a nice change since the Japanese government is not generally known for fast and decisive action.

That said, when I heard the news, my first reaction was “No! What about the food!” since I am no expert in Chinese geography but for me the Sichuan area is closely associated with the best Chinese food! The Sichuan region is famous for the spicy dishes, a bit different from the (in my opinion) slightly boring Cantonese or Peking Chinese food. With China being a significant presence in the region the disaster obviously got a lot of media attention from Japanese news.

Although there has been no lack of serious and detailed reporting about the human tragedy of this event, some other news has been exploring this event from other directions. In consulting we used to call this “capturing it from another angle” and my favorite so far is the TV news that very seriously reported on how this event might have an impact on the supply of spices used in making the delicious Mapo Dofu
dish that is very popular here in Japan (although in a slightly bland version compared with the spicy real deal). In the light of possibly 70,000 dead this important aspect of the tragedy really needs to be explored further and efforts should be put in to secure alternate routes to ensure that we, the inhabitants of the Japanese island, do not have to go without Mapo Dofu for any extended time! Surely this tragedy is bad enough as it is?

…the cynical part of me can’t help but thinking that this event came very timely for the Chinese regime, diverting attention from their questionable actions in Tibet and disregard for basic human rights that came into focus with the Olympic drawing closer…


tornadoes28 said...

I looove mapo dofu. It is one of my favorite dishes. My wife makes it spicy too.

lina said...

haven't ate one yet, but I was introduced to Mapo tofu by Iron Chef (hehe)

Chris said...

never heard of him!!

Pass the lemon Chicken and some of that moo goo gai pan!!!

Mr. Salaryman said...

It seems like we have some consencus around the fact that 麻婆豆腐 (Mapo Dofu) is a funky dish, especially when spicy!

Lina, for your next visit, be sure to try some! Best would probably to have it on location in China, but if Japan is the place you're going your best bet is Chinatown in Kobe or Yokohama!

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