Since I have some very smart and thoughtful readers, I was wondering about your take on it. The parties are a restaurant owner, Joanne Chang-Myers, and a commenter on Yelp. Here's an excerpt:
"I get it, do over-priced Asian fusion food, but why do it in a way that’s offensive? Not only is the “ancient chinese secret” thing messed up, but I also heard about the messed up commercials/ads for this place saying junk like “Confucius say ‘When man go through turnstile sideways, Bangkok!’” or something to that effect. Dude, how is that cool to make a joke out of Asian cultures when you call yourself Asian fusion? Also, shame on the Boston media for calling this a Chinese joint. Messed up!”
“I’m really sorry to read that you were offended by us! As a Taiwainese-American chef, I made my goal at M+C to create a fun restaurant of the calibar I was used to working at (I am a pastry chef by training having worked at several 4 star restaurants in Boston and NYC) that offered Taiwanese, Southeast Asian, and other Asian foods. In Boston if you want Chinese or other Asian food you’re almost exclusively limited to Chinatown.(via Universal Hub)
The ads were meant to be tongue in cheek (and in fact my conservative parents find them hysterical) and the Ancient Chinese Secret mousse was our way of getting around calling it Chocolate Tofu Mousse (see? doesn’t really sound so good that way!)."
First, I know that I am biased towards Joanne Chang-Myers. I'm a huge fan of Flour Bakery + Cafe. I'm looking forward to her cookbook. And from what I've read about her in general and my interview with her, I think she's pretty cool.
However, I get that these four women were offended too. Each person deals with stereotypes about their own race or culture in a different way. These women may have been thinking, "Oh great. More perpetuation of the stereotype to deal with." But Joanne seems to have a different take and likes joking around more.
As an African-American woman, I've sometimes taken offense the way that other black women dealt with stereotypes about us. Some want to put it all out there all the time and joke around about it. Me? Well, not so much. For those who do,I guess we have to agree to disagree. This seems to happen a lot in life. Sometimes you just cannot agree with their postion, but you still have to try to respect them as a person.
I think that Joanne handled this situation well. She adressed it and explained her position. I don't think she can do much more than that. What do you think?
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