Some things should be left to certain people. You don’t see me over here trying to open up an Irish pub called Seattle O’Leary’s do you? Wait, wait… I’m getting ahead of myself a little bit. Let me back up and set the story for y’all.
Slim and I were roaming around this past weekend, looking for food, depreciating the value of the neighborhood we were in with every step that we took. After scouring the block for a place with some decent grub, we stumbled upon a pizza place. A small Mom & Pop pizza joint where the ovens had more space than the customers. Now perhaps this is my prejudiced New York side coming out, but does anyone else expect a pizza place to be owned by Italians? Or at least managed by Italians? Well to my surprise it was owned and maintained by Eastern Europeans. Really son? You’re not even close to Italian. If I wanted some premium vodka I would’ve looked to Russia, right now I just I want some good pizza. Hence why I turned to my Mediterranean friends. And why I abruptly turned around and bounced. When I grew up, if you walked into a Chinese takeout spot everyone there was Chinese. To my knowledge anyway. Same thing with the local pizza shop or the bodega. Now when I stroll into joints, things are all messed up.
Well, this wasn’t just an isolated incident. Around the corner from where I used to live, there’s a bodega owned by some East Africans. In another neighborhood I used to reside, there was another pizza joint owned by Russians. I swear they just reheated some DiGiornio’s and threw it in a box… Think the best example of this type of culture confusion happened awhile ago after a crazy night at a local bar. Some friends and I busted into a Mexican Pizza place owned by Middle Eastern people. Yeah. Let me say that again for you. It was a spot that served both Mexican and Italian food and it was owned by Middle Eastern people. It was either the ninth wonder of the world or the seventh ring of hell depending on how you look at it. Or what you ordered. Like the pizza that tasted like cardboard with Spaghetti O’s on top.
Now, I still eat Qdoba and Domino’s every now again. When I feel like clogging my arteries. And I try my hand at making stir fry knowing damn well, I have no connection to Asian culture. America is all about appropriating food and other parts of other folks’ culture. I dig that. That’s why I can buy Goya and Lo Mein noodles all at the same grocery store. But the blatant deceiving, c’mon man? At least be honest. If I saw a sign that said “Russian Remixed Pizza” or even, “You’d Have to be Really Drunk to Enjoy This”, I’d appreciate the honesty. I’d keep it moving, but I appreciate the honesty. Don’t try and fake the funk and sell me some food that you and I know isn’t up to par.
All I’m saying is some things should be left to their owners. But if anyone wants to open an Irish pub that sells Jamaican beef patties and a mean chicken fried rice, holla at me. We can build.
Seattle – Sometimes They Call Me Marco Polo – Washington