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(Slate)   Having brought peace to the Middle East, democracy to Africa, and successfully negotiated an end to the nuclear aspirations of North Korea and Iran, the UN can finally turn its attention to more pressing matters, such as Japanese food   (slate.com) divider line 66
    More: Asinine, North Korea, Middle East, Iran, dried fish, cultural artifact, Sea of Japan, Michelin Guide, democracy  
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4493 clicks; posted to Main » on 28 Oct 2013 at 1:13 PM (39 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-10-28 12:33:07 PM
Oh, is time for the daily UN hate?

The UN is only as successful and influential as its powerful member states allow it to be.
 
2013-10-28 01:15:51 PM
It's almost like hard problems take exceptionally long periods of time, while trivial things are a matter of formality and probably took little to no effort from 99.9% of the UN to achieve.
 
2013-10-28 01:16:28 PM
It's almost as if the UN runs multiple organizations with different missions that are capable of operating independently from each other.
 
2013-10-28 01:18:34 PM

miss diminutive: Oh, is time for the daily UN hate?

The UN is only as successful and influential as its powerful member states allow it to be.


Well, then let's hope that it is well and truly hosed.
 
2013-10-28 01:21:21 PM
GODDAMN DAW-FEEEEEEENNN
 
2013-10-28 01:24:51 PM

Arkanaut: It's almost as if the UN runs multiple organizations with different missions that are capable of operating independently from each other.

 
2013-10-28 01:25:20 PM
Africa? Hell, they haven't even been able to bring democracy to New York City.
 
2013-10-28 01:26:05 PM
img.fark.net
 
2013-10-28 01:26:08 PM
An international body comprised mostly of dictatorial regimes has a hard time reining in dictators. Shocking.
 
2013-10-28 01:26:08 PM
Another Dennis Rodman thread?
 
2013-10-28 01:27:00 PM
Well, Slate "Cracked" the article.
SO they suck.

Now, every cuisine morphs as time passes. Cuisine is like language, it is a virus. It is a morphing part of humanity.
I don't really care of your grannies pickled squid eyes are endangered from your family's plate. You'll get over it. Go back to Heinz Fish Sauce and soda crackers.

You eat what you get and you like it.
 
2013-10-28 01:27:03 PM
It sounds like a worthy endeavor.  There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.  Taking the time to make sure that the details, rituals, processes, recipes, meanings, etc, are preserved is important.
 
2013-10-28 01:28:07 PM

TuteTibiImperes: It sounds like a worthy endeavor.  There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.  Taking the time to make sure that the details, rituals, processes, recipes, meanings, etc, are preserved is important.


Why?
 
2013-10-28 01:37:14 PM
"FARK YOU DOLPHINS!"


i1.ytimg.com
blogs.miaminewtimes.com
 
2013-10-28 01:45:53 PM

Ned Stark: TuteTibiImperes: It sounds like a worthy endeavor.  There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.  Taking the time to make sure that the details, rituals, processes, recipes, meanings, etc, are preserved is important.

Why?


Because our cultural heritage is valuable.  People like to know where they've come from, how their ancestors lived, and how their society has changed over the years.

Part of it is learning from the past to help set the course for the future, and part of it is just the intrinsic human interest element.  There are traditions that risk disappearing if they're not documented and shared before the remaining people who have actually lived them die.
 
2013-10-28 01:47:33 PM

Ned Stark: TuteTibiImperes: It sounds like a worthy endeavor.  There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.  Taking the time to make sure that the details, rituals, processes, recipes, meanings, etc, are preserved is important.

Why?


Knowing who we were helps guide where we are going.
 
2013-10-28 01:51:58 PM

miss diminutive: Oh, is time for the daily UN hate?

The UN is only as successful and influential as its powerful member states allow it to be.


That is the point. China and Russia have a say in human rights.
 
2013-10-28 01:52:30 PM
There's this thing called 'The Internet'. I hear some people put information there to share it with others and preserve it for probably the rest of human existence.
 
2013-10-28 01:52:53 PM

TuteTibiImperes: There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.


Some cultural traditions should be allowed to die off, if not forced.
 
2013-10-28 01:54:09 PM

wildsnowllama: Ned Stark: TuteTibiImperes: It sounds like a worthy endeavor.  There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.  Taking the time to make sure that the details, rituals, processes, recipes, meanings, etc, are preserved is important.

Why?

Knowing who we were helps guide where we are going.


Examples?
 
2013-10-28 01:55:12 PM
Um...  the UN has more than one department, and is capable of multitasking.

I hate when people act like an organization can only work on one thing at a time and must ignore everything else.
 
2013-10-28 01:55:37 PM
The link to the Star Wars blooper reel is mildly more interesting.
 
2013-10-28 01:56:40 PM

Ned Stark: TuteTibiImperes: It sounds like a worthy endeavor.  There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.  Taking the time to make sure that the details, rituals, processes, recipes, meanings, etc, are preserved is important.

Why?


personalexcellence.co
 
2013-10-28 01:57:20 PM
I love the subtle racism in the quote "Western cuisines are based on fat".   What he really means is that modern Western (American) diets are based on fat.  Which is true to an extent, and I might add in that we eat way too many sugars and carbs.  But that's showing a total ignorance of some cooking traditions in the West that are very much not based on garbage.  The modern "western" diet is very new, and a product of food science more than any tradition.

But that being said, the whole article makes my brain hurt.  I don't hate the fact that the UN has an arm to help protect and preserve things.  Places like Ankor Wat, Notre Dame...  there are times when they could use a voice to speak up for them and a few bucks here and there to keep them from falling down.  But this "intangible" nonsense is bullcrap.  They even admit it, they want to 'maintain' but without "protecting" or "preserving" anything.  How do you do that?  It's like saying you should keep Notre Dame maintained, but allow the new jumbo-tron behind the altar.

Cultures change, it's a fact of human life.  I look at menus and cook-books from a hundred years ago and barely recognize had the dishes.  On the other hand, fifty years ago spaghetti was considered an ethnic food by most Americans (unless of course you were from an Italian family.)  A tradition has to survive by keeping itself important to the people.  Traditional Japanese sword making for example, is a dying art because no one in Japan buys swords anymore.  The whole feudal culture that was centered around is dead.

What we *can* do is keep the records.  That's what libraries and archives are for.  I know what people in Tudor England ate because there are still cookbooks from that era in libraries.  I know what the rich and the poor ate because prices are mentioned in bills and legal documents all neatly filed in the Public Records Office.  But to "maintain" without "preserving" is the sort of silly diplomatic doublespeak that often gives UN projects a bad name.

This woman doesn't need to batch about things, she needs to publish her family cookbook.

/sorry for the mini-rant
 
2013-10-28 01:57:21 PM
Not more than a few blocks from Sugimoto's centuries-old home is a thicket of unwelcome invaders: Starbucks slinging monster soy lattes, a pizza delivery chain prepping seafood pies, a rainbow array of 24-hour convenience stores, portals of warmed-over carbohydrates and general gastronomic mischief. It's a familiar tale: waves of brutish Western culture crashing on the shores of foreign countries and encroaching upon their long-held traditions.

I hate this narrative.  Those Starbucks, pizza joints, convenience stores, and other restaurants are owned, overseen, and sought after by Japanese people.  Traditional foods such as the article mentions fail hard when you come upon the work culture of Japan.  Whether or not you like it happening, it is happening with the full consent and force of Japan.
 
2013-10-28 02:03:37 PM

GoldSpider: TuteTibiImperes: There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.

Some cultural traditions should be allowed to die off, if not forced.



I don't think that Japanese cuisine deserves that fate.
 
2013-10-28 02:03:38 PM
Came to add to the rage that people assume large organizations can only handle one thing at a time, from police departments all the way up to the UN.
 
2013-10-28 02:03:58 PM
Read the headline and thought the UN was going after Japan's whaling practices. Oh well.
 
2013-10-28 02:04:12 PM
the UN can finally turn its attention to more pressing matters, such as Japanese food

And biatching about Israel. Except they never stop, so you can't really say that they're "turning to" it.
 
2013-10-28 02:04:15 PM

GoldSpider: TuteTibiImperes: There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.

Some cultural traditions should be allowed to die off, if not forced.


Like what?  And why?

I'm not saying everything has to continue on in practice, but the knowledge of how things were done, why they were done, and why that was important should live on.

I'm just arguing for documenting and preserving the heritage.  There's no excuse today with our ability to store information that any recipe, book, piece of music, cultural myth or story, etc, getting lost in the sands of time.  We have the capability to store and preserve that information so that anyone who wants to see or use it in the future can do so, and we should be doing that.

Talawsohu: Not more than a few blocks from Sugimoto's centuries-old home is a thicket of unwelcome invaders: Starbucks slinging monster soy lattes, a pizza delivery chain prepping seafood pies, a rainbow array of 24-hour convenience stores, portals of warmed-over carbohydrates and general gastronomic mischief. It's a familiar tale: waves of brutish Western culture crashing on the shores of foreign countries and encroaching upon their long-held traditions.

I hate this narrative.  Those Starbucks, pizza joints, convenience stores, and other restaurants are owned, overseen, and sought after by Japanese people.  Traditional foods such as the article mentions fail hard when you come upon the work culture of Japan.  Whether or not you like it happening, it is happening with the full consent and force of Japan.


Society changes, but that doesn't mean that preserving the old ways aren't worthwhile.  No one is arguing that the Japanese should give up on convenience foods or the influence of western culture, just that they should take care so that their own traditions aren't completely pushed out by the outside influence and that time honored traditions aren't lost because no one remembers how to do them anymore.
 
2013-10-28 02:07:17 PM

TuteTibiImperes: Ned Stark: TuteTibiImperes: It sounds like a worthy endeavor.  There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.  Taking the time to make sure that the details, rituals, processes, recipes, meanings, etc, are preserved is important.

Why?

Because our cultural heritage is valuable.  People like to know where they've come from, how their ancestors lived, and how their society has changed over the years.

Part of it is learning from the past to help set the course for the future, and part of it is just the intrinsic human interest element.  There are traditions that risk disappearing if they're not documented and shared before the remaining people who have actually lived them die.


Oh, I'm all for documenting that stuff. Its history after all. But it seemed like what you were implying was that its important to preserve such practices "in the wild", so to speak. Which seems counterproductive.
 
2013-10-28 02:07:56 PM

Ned Stark: TuteTibiImperes: It sounds like a worthy endeavor.  There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.  Taking the time to make sure that the details, rituals, processes, recipes, meanings, etc, are preserved is important.

Why?


If you have to ask the question, you wouldn't understand the answer.
 
2013-10-28 02:12:59 PM

Ned Stark: TuteTibiImperes: Ned Stark: TuteTibiImperes: It sounds like a worthy endeavor.  There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.  Taking the time to make sure that the details, rituals, processes, recipes, meanings, etc, are preserved is important.

Why?

Because our cultural heritage is valuable.  People like to know where they've come from, how their ancestors lived, and how their society has changed over the years.

Part of it is learning from the past to help set the course for the future, and part of it is just the intrinsic human interest element.  There are traditions that risk disappearing if they're not documented and shared before the remaining people who have actually lived them die.

Oh, I'm all for documenting that stuff. Its history after all. But it seemed like what you were implying was that its important to preserve such practices "in the wild", so to speak. Which seems counterproductive.


Living history is preferable to just resources in a museum, but the latter is better than nothing.  I'm not saying that everyday Japanese people should feel obligated to cook the centuries-old recipes as part of their normal diet, but making them available for people to do so isn't a bad idea, and setting up 'living museums' where people can go to experience what life was like in previous eras, see the clothes, the tools, and the entertainment from the time, eat the food and see how it was prepared, etc, is worthwhile, and a fun thing to do for visitors.

It would also be good for Japanese tourism.  Maintaining a unique cultural identity helps draw in more visitors.  Why would I want to go somewhere else if it was the same as where I'm from due to cultural homogenization?
 
2013-10-28 02:15:16 PM

TuteTibiImperes: GoldSpider: TuteTibiImperes: There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.

Some cultural traditions should be allowed to die off, if not forced.

Like what?  And why?

I'm not saying everything has to continue on in practice, but the knowledge of how things were done, why they were done, and why that was important should live on.

I'm just arguing for documenting and preserving the heritage.  There's no excuse today with our ability to store information that any recipe, book, piece of music, cultural myth or story, etc, getting lost in the sands of time.  We have the capability to store and preserve that information so that anyone who wants to see or use it in the future can do so, and we should be doing that.

Talawsohu: Not more than a few blocks from Sugimoto's centuries-old home is a thicket of unwelcome invaders: Starbucks slinging monster soy lattes, a pizza delivery chain prepping seafood pies, a rainbow array of 24-hour convenience stores, portals of warmed-over carbohydrates and general gastronomic mischief. It's a familiar tale: waves of brutish Western culture crashing on the shores of foreign countries and encroaching upon their long-held traditions.

I hate this narrative.  Those Starbucks, pizza joints, convenience stores, and other restaurants are owned, overseen, and sought after by Japanese people.  Traditional foods such as the article mentions fail hard when you come upon the work culture of Japan.  Whether or not you like it happening, it is happening with the full consent and force of Japan.

Society changes, but that doesn't mean that preserving the old ways aren't worthwhile.  No one is arguing that the Japanese should give up on convenience foods or the influence of western culture, just that they should take care so that their own traditions aren't completely pushed out by the outside influence and that time honored traditions aren't lost because ...


And I would not argue against that.  I will be one of the first to celebrate if kimchi-making gets UNESCO recognition (although I doubt it needs it).  I just hate the narrative pushed by Western writers that Asia is some mystical ancient land that is sadly rotting away because of those evil Western businesses forcing themselves upon them.  It's demeaning and romantic and wholly detracts from the truth.  The traditions dying off are dying off BECAUSE the society changed.  There doesn't need to be a bad guy, outside of time.
 
2013-10-28 02:15:17 PM
America is like the Thunderdome of culinary styles and food. Many dishes enter, one dish leaves. Only the strongest foods survive in America and even then they can be changed beyond recognition by their experience. Most traditional cuisines vs generic American foodstuffs is like a porcelain doll trying to fight a cheesy and delicious elephant.

And lets face it. A lot of the time people were eating "traditional" foods because they didn't have access to something that tasted better, like pizza or tacos. Which is the reason they're abandoning it now.
 
2013-10-28 02:16:50 PM

Mike_1962: If you have to ask the question, you wouldn't understand the answer.


If you can't answer the question, you're going to have a hard time convincing people to go along with your suggested plan, even if there's no effort or cost.
 
Skr
2013-10-28 02:17:04 PM
Cool. Cultural things like Japanese cuisine deserve preservation if for nothing else to save the inevitable effort someone would go through in 100 years to rediscover it. Reminds me a bit of Damascus Steel and how the method to making it was lost for hundreds of years until being recently rediscovered after a lot of hard work.
 
2013-10-28 02:17:32 PM

TuteTibiImperes: Like what? And why?


i.ebayimg.com
 
2013-10-28 02:17:49 PM
TuteTibiImperes:  and setting up 'living museums' where people can go to experience what life was like in previous eras, see the clothes, the tools, and the entertainment from the time, eat the food and see how it was prepared, etc, is worthwhile, and a fun thing to do for visitors.

It would also be good for Japanese tourism.  Maintaining a unique cultural identity helps draw in more visitors.  Why would I want to go somewhere else if it was the same as where I'm from due to cultural homogenization?


I'm pretty sure these museums are pretty common.

/They are in Seoul.
 
2013-10-28 02:23:40 PM
Isn't all Pacific seafood precooked because of Fukushima?
 
2013-10-28 02:24:06 PM

GoldSpider: TuteTibiImperes: Like what? And why?

[i.ebayimg.com image 300x300]


I agree people shouldn't be flying it anymore, perhaps outside of civil war reenactments, but that doesn't mean that we should brush southern culture under the rug either.  While we shouldn't celebrate Jim Crow laws, the KKK, or segregation, we should never forget it.

Culturally speaking, groups like the Southern Foodways Alliance help to preserve elements of traditional southern food culture just like the UN is going to be doing with Japanese cuisine - it's about shared culture and history, nothing controversial there.
 
2013-10-28 02:24:09 PM

To The Escape Zeppelin!: America is like the Thunderdome of culinary styles and food. Many dishes enter, one dish leaves. Only the strongest foods survive in America and even then they can be changed beyond recognition by their experience. Most traditional cuisines vs generic American foodstuffs is like a porcelain doll trying to fight a cheesy and delicious elephant.

And lets face it. A lot of the time people were eating "traditional" foods because they didn't have access to something that tasted better, like pizza or tacos. Which is the reason they're abandoning it now.


"Traditional food" == "What the poor ate".

For example, I am amazed some Italian places can sell polenta for as much as they do.

I'm waiting to see grits gussied up and sold for top dollar very, very soon.

If they are doing it to grilled cheese and mac and cheese, grits cannot be far behind...
 
2013-10-28 02:28:24 PM

GoldSpider: TuteTibiImperes: Like what? And why?

[i.ebayimg.com image 300x300]


zing-o
 
2013-10-28 02:29:35 PM

TuteTibiImperes: GoldSpider: TuteTibiImperes: Like what? And why?

[i.ebayimg.com image 300x300]

I agree people shouldn't be flying it anymore, perhaps outside of civil war reenactments, but that doesn't mean that we should brush southern culture under the rug either.  While we shouldn't celebrate Jim Crow laws, the KKK, or segregation, we should never forget it.

Culturally speaking, groups like the Southern Foodways Alliance help to preserve elements of traditional southern food culture just like the UN is going to be doing with Japanese cuisine - it's about shared culture and history, nothing controversial there.


And just to sort of weave my discordant thoughts into something semi-coherent, what the SFA is doing is what I imagine an ideal 'living preservation' program would be through UNESCO.  They document the traditions, both old, new, and everything in between, highlight and celebrate those who are carrying them out, make the information freely available to everyone, hold events to keep the history alive, and provide resources to allow outsiders to get a glimpse into the world with the background information to help them understand it.

It's at the same time preservation, celebration, stimulation, promotion, and education.
 
2013-10-28 02:35:09 PM

TuteTibiImperes: Ned Stark: TuteTibiImperes: It sounds like a worthy endeavor.  There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.  Taking the time to make sure that the details, rituals, processes, recipes, meanings, etc, are preserved is important.

Why?

Because our cultural heritage is valuable.  People like to know where they've come from, how their ancestors lived, and how their society has changed over the years.


How could this possibly be true? If people actually liked to know where they came from cultural traditions wouldn't need to be protected.

More correctly, some people are obsessed with the past and think it was much better than the present.  This is demonstrably false, and like any nostalgia it falls victim to glossing over the bad parts of the past.
 
2013-10-28 02:44:45 PM

Egoy3k: TuteTibiImperes: Ned Stark: TuteTibiImperes: It sounds like a worthy endeavor.  There are a lot of cultural traditions that are at risk of dying off with older generations because they don't fit well in the modern world.  Taking the time to make sure that the details, rituals, processes, recipes, meanings, etc, are preserved is important.

Why?

Because our cultural heritage is valuable.  People like to know where they've come from, how their ancestors lived, and how their society has changed over the years.

How could this possibly be true? If people actually liked to know where they came from cultural traditions wouldn't need to be protected.

More correctly, some people are obsessed with the past and think it was much better than the present.  This is demonstrably false, and like any nostalgia it falls victim to glossing over the bad parts of the past.


Just because you can't make the time in your life to do things the old way consistently doesn't mean that you can't enjoy doing it that way occasionally, or at least learning about how it was done.

It's not about thinking the past was better, I certainly don't wish I'd been born 50, 100, or 200 years ago, but I appreciate that historians and anthropologists have preserved information about what life was like back then so that I can appreciate how society has evolved and see what it was like for  people back in those days.

It's a silly argument that things wouldn't need protection if people cared - people do care, they just have plenty of other pressing needs in their lives.  People care about having clean water to drink, maintained roads to drive on, and access to information about the world around them yet most people aren't building their own filtration plants, paving the street in front of their homes themselves, or spending time in the Senate chambers listening to debate.  Historians provide a necessary function in preserving our shared heritage so that everyone can appreciate it when they have the time.
 
2013-10-28 02:47:43 PM
So because murder and rape are so much worse than common assault, we should not bother trying to investigate or prosecute cases of common assault?
 
2013-10-28 02:51:47 PM

To The Escape Zeppelin!: America is like the Thunderdome of culinary styles and food. Many dishes enter, one dish leaves. Only the strongest foods survive in America and even then they can be changed beyond recognition by their experience. Most traditional cuisines vs generic American foodstuffs is like a porcelain doll trying to fight a cheesy and delicious elephant.

And lets face it. A lot of the time people were eating "traditional" foods because they didn't have access to something that tasted better, like pizza or tacos. Which is the reason they're abandoning it now.



Two great examples of American food.  You could have added other generic American foods like sushi, pho, and moo goo gai pan.
 
2013-10-28 02:53:32 PM

VonEvilstein: So because murder and rape are so much worse than common assault, we should not bother trying to investigate or prosecute cases of common assault?



Isn't it a bit early in the day to be drunk?
 
2013-10-28 03:04:07 PM

FloydA: To The Escape Zeppelin!: America is like the Thunderdome of culinary styles and food. Many dishes enter, one dish leaves. Only the strongest foods survive in America and even then they can be changed beyond recognition by their experience. Most traditional cuisines vs generic American foodstuffs is like a porcelain doll trying to fight a cheesy and delicious elephant.

And lets face it. A lot of the time people were eating "traditional" foods because they didn't have access to something that tasted better, like pizza or tacos. Which is the reason they're abandoning it now.


Two great examples of American food.  You could have added other generic American foods like sushi, pho, and moo goo gai pan.


You clearly didn't read my post. Neither pizza nor tacos in their current form are traditional Italian or Mexican dishes. They are monster foods descended from traditional cuisines but still very different. Or are you really suggesting that Pizza Hut makes traditional Italian food? American Chinese food is a better example. It has roots in China but it is so changed and altered to make it more appealing that it has little relation to its origin.
 
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