Tuesday, August 29, 2006
a toast to the japanese...
As many of you are aware, I spent quite a long time living in Japan.
Generally I like the Japanese a lot however last week I encountered the lowest form of their culture; the Japanese tour group.
I was staying at The Grand Hyatt in Singapore, which serves a spectacular buffet breakfast every morning, when the trouble began.
You see, the hotel had one of those fabulous conveyor-belt toasters. You load the bread onto the rack, then while it journeys through the machinery, you have time to toddle off to the 'egg-station' and get a couple of freshly-cooked sunny-side-ups and a kilo of bacon from the 'pig-tray' before wandering back to claim your toast.
That's the theory anyway.
However, when I returned to the Toastmaster 5000, my toast had vanished. I peered hopefully into the 'out-basket' for another thirty seconds however in my heart I knew it was hopeless.
I looked around and saw a Japanese chick from a tour group with what was undoubtedly my toast, about two metres away ladling some scrambled egg onto her ill-gotten goodies.
Devastated by the thought of my congealing eggs/bacon but realistic about the chances of recovering my stolen toast, I reloaded with fresh bread, then ventured off to the juice-bar for an orange/apple/pineapple smoothie, only to return and find my toast had been pilfered again.
I was now livid; a quick glance down the counter and I'd identified the thief as yet another Japanese chick from the tour group.
The problem is that the average Tour Jap is so used to having everything done for them; they automatically assume that either there is someone invisibly loading bread into the toaster on their behalf, or that the toaster is a bit magical.
Anyway, I wasn’t really quite up for a round of ‘Listen you dopey, four-foot, slanty-eyed dolphin-basher…you have to put the fucking bread IN the fucking toaster before you can take the fucking toast OUT !!!’.
So, instead I slammed my now hardened eggs/bacon down on a table and stormed off to the hotel pharmacy; where I purchased a small bottle of ‘Stop N Grow’.
You know the stuff; that rancid shit you put on your nails to stop nibbling them.
Returning to the breakfast room, I grabbed six slices of bread, took them over to my table and seasoned them liberally with ‘Stop N Grow’.
I then loaded all six into the magic toaster and sat back to see what happened.
Sure enough, every last piece was hoovered by one or more of the marauding tour Japs.
I hope they choked on it…