East Meets Midwest

Filed under bigtime celebrity, living in new york is neat

How kind of all of you–or, you know, two of you–to ask to see the Time Out New York submission that’s going to grant me all the fame I can handle. Because you know I was dying to share it.

Dear TONY,

Have you ever found yourself–a corn-fed farmgirl from smalltown Ohio living in the midwestern enclave that is Williamsburg–avoiding all of the hip joints your white friends recommend because you think Asian culture is where the action is? I have, and that’s why I’m calling my “How long can you go?” entry East Meets Midwest.


We’d start out the day at Jing Fong, naturally, and you’d be happy to share pork and vegetable dumplings with me, because you don’t like shrimp in your dim sum, either. We’d talk about how cuttlefish sound totally cute, and you’d spend the rest of the day calling me that as a term of endearment.

Next would be Sakura Matsuri at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden, where we’d take a ridiculous number of pictures of ourselves looking innocent–no, coy–beneath the cherry blossoms. We’d stick around for a photo-op with the sushi pillow, and if I’m lucky, you’ll buy us matching ones to take home and remember each other by.

Lunch would be at Sakae Sushi in the Chrysler Building, because not only is fish from a conveyor belt an awesome novelty that I’m not ashamed to love, but they have tempura ice cream and chicken dishes covered in cheese, forgod’ssake.

In the afternoon, we’d make our way to Union Square for the 2 p.m. showing of Jump, and every single person in the audience would be white and midwestern, so I’d feel right at home.

Because you’re too cheap to buy me souvenirs there, we’d head to Pearl River for erasers shaped like fast food, tiny Buddhas in pervy poses, and bags of whole dried fish that you’d happily chow down on while I made squeamish faces.

Dinner would be at Yakitori Torys, where you would eat skewers and skewers of soft knee bone, while I’d take advantage of your cash and fill up on kobe beef tongue. We’d share the steamed vegetables and be amazed at what wasabi mayonnaise can do for carrots.

We’d follow dinner with dessert at Kyotofu, because we’re way above the Pinkberry post-hype. I’d have the Frozen Maple Soy Parfait, and you’d allow me the suggested sake pairing, because we’re close that way.

Next would be drinks underground at Decibel, and I wouldn’t be afraid to keep up with you, because I know you’d never take advantage of me.

Since we’d be inhibition-free at that point, we’d rent out a private room at Sing-Sing (the one on Ave. A, obviously), and I would karaoke more Heart and Pat Benetar than you thought possible. AND YOU WOULD LIKE IT.

We’d go to The Park for a little dancing by the bamboo, if you insisted, but I’m serious about that karaoking, and I could do it alllllllll night long.

Although I’d be willing to stop if you wanted some okonomiyaki from Oh! Taisho, and I’d use my camera to videotape the dried fish skin topping as it contracts in the heat.


Oh, TONY, we’d have so much fun together. And we wouldn’t even have to speak with offensive faux-Chinese accents all night if you didn’t want to. I’m all about compromise and making this relationship work.


Thank you to Sonya for pointing me to the contest and believing in me, and thank you to JTS for introducing me to the idea of Williamsburg as a midwestern enclave. ‘Cause it totally is. But it’s still hip, so shut up.