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Stereotype of the Month Entry

Another Stereotype of the Month entry:

A correspondent brought this restaurant to my attention.

"Indian": an authentic Taiwanese beer hall in Los Angeles. I hate to even rat this one out, because the food is so damn good (see the reviews linked below) and they seem to have take on this stereotype w/ a certain amount of kitschy hutzpah, or perhaps wanton obliviousness (maybe along the lines of "Engrish"—see http://www.engrish.com).

Their sign is the typical generic chief's head w/ headdress, and the word "Indian" (maybe also "Restaurant"? I can't remember) in English—the rest is in Chinese. It's on San Gabriel Ave. (a new area for lots of Chinese restaurants in particular, I'm told), in a strip mall, but its facade is this log cabin western facade, w/ real logs and stones (it appeared to me) but lacquered to a glossy shine. The inside decor is the same, ultra-faux western. The kicker is the wait staff: all Taiwanese/American young women dressed in cutoff jeans and red string tops, wearing a single feather headband. (One reviewer joked that this was traditional Hopi....)

The funny thing is that no one seems to have an explanation for this, nor does anyone really seem to think much of it other than as a kitschy thing. My Taiwanese cousin-in-law said they had even just recently re-done the place (I had assumed maybe it was an old BBQ place or something, but no, this theme was new and quite intentional). It just seems like part of the slightly surreal atmosphere of drinking European beer (really European beers, not the Chinese copies) to really really good, authentic Taiwanese beer-hall food. A very strange experience, indeed.



Rob's comment
Let's hope the reviewer was joking. I wouldn't bet my life on it. That's the problem with stereotyping: People start believing the most outlandish things about Indians.

Related links
Indian women as sex objects

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