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Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Yankees analyst David Cone refers to Ichiro Suzuki’s bat as ‘chopstick’

A Glitcher’s Story: Just Another Inning With David Cone.

David Cone might have some explaining to do after a comment he made during Tuesday night’s broadcast of the New York Yankees-Boston Red Sox game.

Cone referred to the bat used by Yankees outfielder Ichiro Suzuki as a “chopstick” on the YES Network’s broadcast of the game. Ichiro is a native of Japan.

The remark caused an outcry from fans on social media.

Repoz Posted: October 03, 2012 at 04:53 AM | 145 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: yankees

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   1. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: October 03, 2012 at 07:19 AM (#4252118)
Oh, David.
   2. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: October 03, 2012 at 07:19 AM (#4252119)
If this results in the best analyst on YES being fired, it would be a pity. What an asshat.
   3. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: October 03, 2012 at 07:45 AM (#4252128)
Cone referred to the bat used by Yankees outfielder Ichiro Suzuki as a “chopstick” on the YES Network

Shouldn't that comment have been on MSG?
   4. Greg Schuler Posted: October 03, 2012 at 07:53 AM (#4252132)
Cone's likely response - me so sorry...

Ah racism.
   5. DKDC Posted: October 03, 2012 at 07:55 AM (#4252134)
Cone is the best analyst on YES? I thought he was pretty bad when I tuned in to watch the Red Sox implosion last night. And I definitely cringed at the chopstick remark.

I expected Ichiro's next at bat to be a can of miniature corn.
   6. Adward Posted: October 03, 2012 at 07:58 AM (#4252138)
Daniel Cone: Wouldn't a Louisville be easier?

Sensei Ichiro: Man who hit ball with chopstick, hit for power if he want to.
   7. flournoy Posted: October 03, 2012 at 08:07 AM (#4252142)
Somebody please articulate why this is objectionable. (Beyond "lame humor.")
   8. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: October 03, 2012 at 08:09 AM (#4252144)

Cone is the best analyst on YES? I thought he was pretty bad when I tuned in to watch the Red Sox implosion last night. And I definitely cringed at the chopstick remark


Unless they have another analyst citing WAR and fielding metrics that I don't know about. Plus he has fascinating things to say about pitching.
   9. bunyon Posted: October 03, 2012 at 08:16 AM (#4252148)
I'm with Flournoy; it isn't that funny, but I'm not sure why it is objectionable. Is "chopstick" offensive in some way? Should I not eat with chopsticks when I got to a Japanese restaurant, lest I offend?

Ichiro is, obviously, Japanese. The Japanese use chopsticks. It seems to me that is just a colorful way to say "bat".

I'm willing to leave it with Ichiro. Ask him if he's offended.
   10. Lassus Posted: October 03, 2012 at 08:23 AM (#4252150)
Is "chopstick" offensive in some way? Should I not eat with chopsticks when I got to a Japanese restaurant, lest I offend?

Whether or not one agrees with the concept, the idea is that it lets more people feel okay when they see someone asian to primarily think CHOPSTICK or when they want to make a joke about someone asian to use CHOPSTICK or that the sole identity of anyone asian is something like CHOPSTICK or other asian stereotypes.

Again, you may not agree, and that's fine. I knew plenty of asians in school who, if born on Long Island, had to answer "what do they eat where you're from?" questions. It's pretty annoying for them, and other less friendly circumstances, far more than annoying. This kind of thing just reinforces the clueless, and makes certain lives more difficult.

And yes, plenty of Asians don't give twoshits, at all. This doesn't make the concerns of those who do invalid or unimportant.
   11. bunyon Posted: October 03, 2012 at 08:28 AM (#4252154)
Okay, but Ichiro is actually Japanese and everyone knows this. I've had Japanese friends have me to dinner and we ate with chopsticks. You want offensive, serve a stubby fingered Oklahoman rice and only give him a chopstick to eat it with.

It's impossible to know what will offend but, sheesh, referring to a wooden stick in the hands of a Japanese player, especially a light hitting one, as a chopstick seems innocuous. I usually come down on the side of "be sensitive" but this really does seem, to me, to be a sign that any reference of any kind to another culture that doesn't bend over backward to kiss that culture's ass is offensive.
   12. Nasty Nate Posted: October 03, 2012 at 08:59 AM (#4252165)
to paraphrase Seinfeld: "You know they've seen the fork. They're staying with the sticks. I don't know how they missed it. Chinese farmer gets up, works in the field with a shovel all day. Shovel. Spoon. Come on. You're not plowing 40 acres with a couple of pool cues!"
   13. BDC Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:11 AM (#4252172)
Speaking as a lifelong amateur cook specializing in Chinese dishes, chopsticks are a hell of a useful kitchen item, as well as a cromulent means of eating dinner. It's all in the eye of the beholder, but chopsticks to me signify precision, elegance, and dexterity, which actually fits Ichiro's batting style to a T. I would be interested in knowing whether he's pleased by the comparison, or wants to kill David Cone with a chopstick.
   14. Benji Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:12 AM (#4252174)
It was cringeworthy, but it followed a hell of a lot of praise for Ichiro from Cone and Singleton. It would be a shame if Coney gets fired for it, but I'd love to see him replace Hernandez in the Met booth. The "you kids out there" and "I love his stuff" (for every pitcher on both teams) is as played out as Healy and McCarver were.
   15. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:14 AM (#4252179)
I heard it, but didn't think it was consciously referencing Ichiro's race. I thought he was talking about the way that Ichiro reached down and scooped a ball that was nearly in the dirt.

But I'm a guy who watched the Superbowl halftime show and didn't realize a nip had slipped out, so whaddoiknow.
   16. bunyon Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:16 AM (#4252181)
I should add, I've learned to use them and do enjoy it. But, man, my first few goes with it...not pretty.
   17. Belfry Bob Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:22 AM (#4252184)
Awkward yes...offensive? Sheesh.

Have we gotten to a point where we are supposed to filter everything to be as white bread (oops, I guess that's offensive to someone)...as neutral as possible?

How...uninteresting.
   18. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:24 AM (#4252186)
Whether or not one agrees with the concept, the idea is that it lets more people feel okay when they see someone asian to primarily think CHOPSTICK or when they want to make a joke about someone asian to use CHOPSTICK or that the sole identity of anyone asian is something like CHOPSTICK or other asian stereotypes.

Has the copious public dissemination of the "n-word" in recent years let more people feel okay when they see someone black to think, "n-word"? Do you advocate the word being censored when it can be heard by white crackers who might not get the nuances of meaning or may otherwise use it to stereotype?

This idea that words can't be put into public discourse because others will misuse them isn't borne out by the way society actually operates.

And, yes, plenty of people are actually offended by the relentless use of the n-word on the public airwaves -- and rightfully so. (I happen not to be one of them, but I see the point.)
   19. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:25 AM (#4252188)
With the right foods chopsticks are not much more difficult than a fork or a spoon. The biggest difference I find is that I get less food per mouthful but as someone who battles his weight that's not necessarily the worst result in the world.
   20. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:28 AM (#4252190)
I like eating with chopsticks.

I guess I don't see much to get aggrieved about here. Ichiro's Japanese-Japanese, not Japanese-American and he has an unusual swing that makes it seem like he's swinging something less substantial that a Louisville Slugger. To borrow a buzzword from 4 years ago, why can't this just be a "teaching moment" for Cone instead of an opportunity to get the torches and pitchforks? I also agree that Cone's a good analyst and seems to take the job more seriously than his non-jock cohorts on the Yankee broadcasting team.
   21. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:31 AM (#4252194)
To borrow a buzzword from 4 years ago, why can't this just be a "teaching moment" for Cone instead of an opportunity to get the torches and pitchforks? I

There's nothing to teach him, and it's antisocial and anti-pluralist to suggest that there is or to believe that any "offense" somenone might feel warrants action taken by or against Cone.(*) He's doing nothing that isn't frequently done in the culture.

(*) People can certainly feel "offense," if they choose, but they have no basis to insist on any remedial action for such offense. Any such insistence violates the spirit of pluralism -- badly.
   22. Lassus Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:31 AM (#4252195)
As usual, Shooty and I are of the same mind here.
   23. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:35 AM (#4252199)
1. Watched last night's game and didn't notice it.

2. Don't see what is offensive about it.
   24. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:35 AM (#4252200)
It's a little offensive because he's specifically referencing Ichiro's ethnicity when discussing his hitting, something that has nothing to do with his identity. He wouldn't use the same approach for 99% of other major leaguers.

What if he'd said "Kinsler has a pretty weak arm. It looks like he's throwing a matzo ball"? Or "boy, it looks like Bryce Harper has been possessed by the Angel Moroni"? Or "Gonzalez cradled the ball in his glove like he was eating a taco"?

That said, it's not a big deal. Just a stupid thing to say.
   25. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:39 AM (#4252206)
There's nothing to teach him, and it's antisocial and anti-pluralist to suggest that there is or to believe that any "offense" somenone might feel warrants action taken by or against Cone.(*) He's doing nothing that isn't frequently done in the culture.

I mean for the people who are aggrieved and want to get him fired.

edit: Ah screw it. Couldn't get my link to work.
   26. Rants Mulliniks Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:40 AM (#4252207)
If anyone is offended by this I really feel sorry for them.
   27. McCoy Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:41 AM (#4252209)
re 24 I see no big deal in any of them though I would scratch my head at cradling a taco thing. Who cradles a taco?

Is "Donora Express" taboo now as well?
   28. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:42 AM (#4252210)
[24] Serious question, can you think of an example referencing blacks? That might help me better understand.
   29. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:43 AM (#4252212)
re 24 I see no big deal in any of them though I would scratch my head at cradling a taco thing. Who cradles a taco?

I don't know...I was struggling to come up with examples. I need more coffee.

Like I said, it's not a big deal, just a silly thing for Cone to say.
   30. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:43 AM (#4252213)
Who cradles a taco?

The perfect set up for a fat ballplayer joke from which I will refrain.
   31. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:44 AM (#4252214)
Cone referred to the bat used by Yankees outfielder Ichiro Suzuki as a “chopstick” on the YES Network’s broadcast of the game.

Every network eventually has a nip slip.
   32. McCoy Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:45 AM (#4252216)
[24] Serious question, can you think of an example referencing blacks? That might help me better understand.

That pitch looked like a watermelon to him.
   33. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:46 AM (#4252217)
[28] That's tricky because watermelon and fried chicken are such obvious racist stereotypes. Maybe something like "Rollins plays short likes he's break dancing."
   34. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:46 AM (#4252219)
I mean for the people who are aggrieved and want to get him fired.

Yes, they're in serious need of teaching.
   35. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:50 AM (#4252223)
[32, 33] Got it. The watermelon/fried chicken examples would just strike me as more obviously offensive and I suppose I'm not sure the extent to which that is affected by my background. Perhaps if I was Japanese I would find the reference to a chopstick offensive, but as an outsider I don't see it.
   36. The Long Arm of Rudy Law Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:52 AM (#4252230)
Ichiro has done the math and, while he's a bad driver-in of runs, he really earns his rice by getting on base, saying "Hello Kitty" to the pitcher and politely rattling him like a dolphin caught in a tuna net.
   37. pthomas Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:56 AM (#4252233)
So, if a player is from Transylvania, he cannot use a "bat". Ok, got it.
   38. bobm Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:57 AM (#4252234)
I guess I don't see much to get aggrieved about here. Ichiro's Japanese-Japanese, not Japanese-American and he has an unusual swing that makes it seem like he's swinging something less substantial that a Louisville Slugger.

"Baltimore Chop" stick?
   39. spike Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:57 AM (#4252235)
The biggest difference I find is that I get less food per mouthful

You can get even more noodles per try with sticks.

   40. Rants Mulliniks Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:57 AM (#4252236)
like a dolphin caught in a tuna net.


They don't even go through the pretense of saying dolphins are bycatch, they herd them into bays and slaughter them with spears and harpoons. But I suppose a predilection for eating cetaceans has nothing to do with them being Japanese.
   41. bjhanke Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:57 AM (#4252237)
RE: #28 -

I'm pretty sure that most black people I know would not appreciate something like, "He's got so much eyeblack on he looks like a coon."
   42. SG Posted: October 03, 2012 at 09:58 AM (#4252239)
While watching last night I didn't really think much about the comment until the somewhat awkward silence that followed it. Then it really hit me that it could be construed as it apparently is being in some quarters. I don't think there was any maliciousness in Cone's comment, but I do think he wishes he hadn't said it now.
   43. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 10:00 AM (#4252241)
[41] The underlying comparison is blatantly offensive in your example so I don't see how that compares unless there is something innately offensive about referencing Japanese people's use of chopsticks.

EDIT: If Cone had said something along the lines of [36] or some sort of math/science/computer programming/insert stereotype here reference, I would get the offense.
   44. winnipegwhip Posted: October 03, 2012 at 10:01 AM (#4252242)
But it is okay for Ichiro to bad mouth David Cone's hometown????

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GtImIqR5neU
   45. danup Posted: October 03, 2012 at 10:19 AM (#4252259)
Japanese people from Japan—who do use chopsticks, and who constantly ask me when I'm there whether I can handle them—in America are in such a different social situation from African Americans in America that the watermelons etc. comparison seems like a spurious one to make. Watermelon and fried chicken are referencing a politically and historically charged stereotype of African Americans that still has power both to offend and inflame; "chopstick" is referencing that East Asian people, and people eating East Asian food... often eat with chopsticks. Ichiro is from Japan, will return there after he retires, and swings in a way that's peculiar to Japanese baseball players (and, to be honest, with his stats does suggest precision and selectiveness in a way that allows for a pretty easy analogy to eating with chopsticks, where on the other end Adam Dunn is eating with his hands and a giant bib.)

I'd probably cringe if I heard this, but only because it sounds like a bad joke. The idea that this is bad—both in general and especially relative to the other jokes and allusions and analogies that are and have been made re: foreign-born baseball players in the majors—kind of mystifies me, to be honest. I'd rather we reserve our supply of moral indignation for, say, those "Horry Kow" Fukudome souvenirs.
   46. Harmon "Thread Killer" Microbrew Posted: October 03, 2012 at 10:22 AM (#4252264)
David Cone, on Matt Stairs' excessive use of pine tar:

He just loads that bat up with maple syrup, doesn't he?


David Cone, on Dave Nilsson's arm:

Look at that cannon -- he threw another shrimp on the barbie!
   47. ??'s Biggest Fan! Posted: October 03, 2012 at 10:32 AM (#4252274)
I heard Cone on a broadcast with Singleton in KC in the middle of the summer. Cone was saying some really funny and cutting stuff that most other analyst probably wouldn't have said. Singleton was rendered speechless for about 3-4 seconds. I don't recall the specifics, but I do remembering thinking, "I don't find this objectionable, but I think it might tick some people off if they weren't in the male, 18-40 demo." Having listened to him this past season, I honestly don't think he meant any offense. He's just trying a little too hard.
   48. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: October 03, 2012 at 10:39 AM (#4252286)
Cone relates to the 18-40 demo? Pretty good for an old guy!
   49. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 10:40 AM (#4252287)
Whether or not one agrees with the concept, the idea is that it lets more people feel okay when they see someone asian to primarily think CHOPSTICK or when they want to make a joke about someone asian to use CHOPSTICK or that the sole identity of anyone asian is something like CHOPSTICK or other asian stereotypes.

Again, you may not agree, and that's fine. I knew plenty of asians in school who, if born on Long Island, had to answer "what do they eat where you're from?" questions. It's pretty annoying for them, and other less friendly circumstances, far more than annoying. This kind of thing just reinforces the clueless, and makes certain lives more difficult.

And yes, plenty of Asians don't give twoshits, at all. This doesn't make the concerns of those who do invalid or unimportant.


Yawn.
   50. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 10:41 AM (#4252290)

[28] That's tricky because watermelon and fried chicken are such obvious racist stereotypes. Maybe something like "Rollins plays short likes he's break dancing."


Last night on the news there was a piece about some Chiefs players going to some chicken restaurant to raise money for charity. The news anchor laughs and says, "and I bet those guys can really put away some chicken!" as the picture is of all four black players. She kinda looked horrified for a split second before they went to commercial.

To be honest, I'm Asian and I don't see a big problem with this. I'd have more of a problem I guess if Ichiro was Japanese-American, but he's Japanese, and almost certainly does use chopsticks. We shouldn't be PC to the point where we lose the ability to use colorful, fairly racially-benign language.
   51. Bruce Markusen Posted: October 03, 2012 at 10:46 AM (#4252298)
I really don't see why this is offensive at all. (And it's not at all comparable to what Yunel Escobar did; he deserved the criticism he received.)

Since when did the word "chopsticks" become offensive? To call "chopsticks" some kind of racist or ethnic stereotype is really a stretch. I'd be curious to hear what Ichiro himself thinks of this. Would he consider this offensive?
   52. bunyon Posted: October 03, 2012 at 10:48 AM (#4252300)
Last night on the news there was a piece about some Chiefs players going to some chicken restaurant to raise money for charity. The news anchor laughs and says, "and I bet those guys can really put away some chicken!" as the picture is of all four black players. She kinda looked horrified for a split second before they went to commercial.


And that is too bad. Because four big football players can almost certainly put away some chicken. To me, it should all be the context. What that announcer said, following that story, with the tone* I would imagine she had, should in no way be offensive. Otherwise, white people shouldn't ever talk about black people, Americans should never talk about Asians, etc. If, in that moment, where we share something - a laugh over a messy meal, a nuance of human interaction, whatever, we're always looking over our shoulder to see if we offended, we'll never truly interact as equals.

   53. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 10:50 AM (#4252303)
Since when did the word "chopsticks" become offensive? To call "chopsticks" some kind of racist or ethnic stereotype is really a stretch.


He's Japanese! But don't ever associate him with being Japanese!

I mean, at least the Steve Lyons thing, as blown out of proportion as it was, was a situation where Lyons was associating hispanics with being thieves in an attempt to be funny. Nothing like that exists here, and people really need to get lives.
   54. Spectral Posted: October 03, 2012 at 10:50 AM (#4252304)
I don't really see this as comparable to typically pejorative stereotypes. It sounds like something that someone shouldn't really say on air for a reason that I can't quite put my finger on, but it doesn't actually constitute sufficient offense to warrant doing anything at all about it. Referencing ethnicity in the context of baseball is just kind of materially awkward, but I don't think it's automatically offensive.
   55. Every Inge Counts Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:03 AM (#4252318)
I think the one comment I heard in the past few years that made me immediately go "oh he is in trouble" was when Bob Griese said that Juan Pablo Montoya was "out having a taco."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/10/27/bob-griese-suspended-for-_n_335070.html
   56. winnipegwhip Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:03 AM (#4252319)
Word of advice for the MASN crew today. Do not paraphrase Keith Moon when commenting on German born Edwin Jackson's start by saying "it went down like a lead balloon."
   57. Rennie's Tenet Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:06 AM (#4252324)
David Cone, on Matt Stairs' excessive use of pine tar:

He just loads that bat up with maple syrup, doesn't he?

David Cone, on Dave Nilsson's arm:

Look at that cannon -- he threw another shrimp on the barbie!


On Sam McDowell:

He sure can propel the pierogi!
   58. ugen64 Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:10 AM (#4252332)
51 - If you were in Asia, and someone made a joke related to using a fork, would you be offended? I think most people wouldn't even consider that as offensive. I'm not Japanese, but I am Asian-American, and I think this joke is kinda awkward/lame, but I definitely didn't take even the smallest hint of offense to it.
   59. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:13 AM (#4252340)
If, in that moment, where we share something - a laugh over a messy meal, a nuance of human interaction, whatever, we're always looking over our shoulder to see if we offended, we'll never truly interact as equals.

This is the biggest problem with the whole kerfluffle -- the belief that Ichiro and people of other races/nationalities similarly situated to Ichiro are in need of special protection and dispensation. That's denigrating to them and indicates a lack of dedication to their actual equality.

The four black KC Chiefs can handle other people thinking they can eat a lot of chicken. Ichiro can handle having his bat referred to as a chopstick. They aren't in need of whitey's guilt and noblesse oblige.
   60. McCoy Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:18 AM (#4252344)
I mean, at least the Steve Lyons thing, as blown out of proportion as it was, was a situation where Lyons was associating hispanics with being thieves in an attempt to be funny. Nothing like that exists here, and people really need to get lives.

No he wasn't. Lyons wasn't saying Lou stole his wallet. He was talking about how smart Lou was and here he was so stupid that he didn't even know where his wallet was.
   61. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:20 AM (#4252346)
He's Japanese! But don't ever associate him with being Japanese!

The fact of the matter is that most of us, including me, note the fact that Ichiro is Japanese and think it's quite cool. Ichiro's a cool guy and the way he goes about his baseball business is cool. His ethnicity is inevitably intertwined in all of that and all of us are conscious of it.
   62. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:20 AM (#4252348)
A chopstick actually is a pretty good metaphor for Ichiro's batting style.
   63. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:22 AM (#4252353)
No he wasn't. Lyons wasn't saying Lou stole his wallet. He was talking about how smart Lou was and here he was so stupid that he didn't even know where his wallet was.


Hmm. I'll have to re-review the incident.
   64. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:22 AM (#4252354)
As in many of these discussions, the pro free speech (for lack of a better description) people are more outraged than the people who think Cone said something stupid. Is anyone actually deeply offended or calling for Cone to be fired or disciplined? It's a lot of sound and fury over nothing.
   65. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:22 AM (#4252355)
It reminds me of this scene in The Office, back when it was funny:

Oscar: My parents were Mexican.
Michael: Wow. That is... That is a great story. That's the American Dream right there, right?
Oscar Martinez: Thank... Yeah...
Michael Scott: Um, let me ask you, is there a term besides Mexican that you prefer? Something less offensive?
Oscar Martinez: Mexican isn't offensive.
Michael Scott: Well, it has certain connotations.
Oscar Martinez: Like what?
   66. McCoy Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:27 AM (#4252359)
   67. Poster Nutbag Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:33 AM (#4252362)
I am with # 62. He's a slap-hitter, or he "chops" at the ball....with his "stick".
I think it's fairly easy to see where Cone went with trying to be funny/cool/whatever by saying "chopstick".
   68. Gaelan Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:40 AM (#4252375)
There is nothing even remotely offensive about this. If you are offended by this, you are wrong. I'm just calling a spade a spade.
   69. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:41 AM (#4252377)
Oscar: My parents were Mexican.
Michael: Wow. That is... That is a great story. That's the American Dream right there, right?
Oscar Martinez: Thank... Yeah...
Michael Scott: Um, let me ask you, is there a term besides Mexican that you prefer? Something less offensive?
Oscar Martinez: Mexican isn't offensive.
Michael Scott: Well, it has certain connotations.
Oscar Martinez: Like what?


So my mom and I get a flat last year in an SUV. While I've changed plenty of tires in simple four-door cars like a Toyota Camry, I'm having a hell of a time reading the manual and figuring out how in the hell to change this tire. Or even how to release the spare from its locked and chained position underneath the car. A hispanic kid in his 20s comes over, jumps underneath the car, and begins to quickly and effortlessly go through the various steps without bothering with the manual. My mom is impressed and asks, "Wow! Are you a mechanic?" Without breaking stride he replies, "No, ma'am, just Mexican."
   70. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:41 AM (#4252379)
Referencing ethnicity in the context of baseball is just kind of materially awkward, but I don't think it's automatically offensive.

European soccer announcers do it constantly, though! (In club play, not international where it would be more expected).

"Not sure what the German had in mind there with that ball..."

"Brilliant cross there by the young Tunisian!"

etc.
   71. bunyon Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:42 AM (#4252381)
A chopstick actually is a pretty good metaphor for Ichiro's batting style.

The real question is: if it were conclusively proved that Ichiro had 4000 something professional hits using a chopstick for a bat, would Ray vote for him for the HOF?
   72. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:43 AM (#4252382)
European soccer announcers do it constantly, though!

"Not sure what the German had in mind there with that ball..."

"Brilliant cross there by the young Mexican!"

etc.


Same thing with American tennis announcers who probably do it even more often.
   73. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:45 AM (#4252383)
There is nothing even remotely offensive about this. If you are offended by this, you are wrong. I'm just calling a spade a spade.


Yeah, the whole "most people aren't offended, but SOME people are, and their reaction is valid" is silly.
   74. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: October 03, 2012 at 11:46 AM (#4252388)
Yes, I changed Mexican to Tunisian, because I couldn't off the top of my head think of any Mexicans in the Premier League. Surely there are some, though....right?
   75. Rennie's Tenet Posted: October 03, 2012 at 12:11 PM (#4252423)
I guess what Cone should have done here is mention abour 20 times how Rod Carew used to swing the ole' chopstick before applying it to Ichiro?
   76. The Chronicles of Reddick Posted: October 03, 2012 at 12:26 PM (#4252439)
My feeling is that unless there is some malicious intent behind what he said then there shouldn't even been an issue. Its not like he is one of those Spanish soccer players that called the opposing black soccer players "monkeys" to their face.
   77. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: October 03, 2012 at 12:31 PM (#4252443)
I'm just calling a spade a spade.

I think you mean, you're calling a shovel a shovel. It's less offensive.
   78. Greg Schuler Posted: October 03, 2012 at 12:50 PM (#4252462)
Yes, I changed Mexican to Tunisian, because I couldn't off the top of my head think of any Mexicans in the Premier League. Surely there are some, though....right?


Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez at Man Utd, for one.
   79. Greg Schuler Posted: October 03, 2012 at 12:51 PM (#4252464)
Korean chopsticks are much harder to use. Flattened and metal makes it tougher to keep the grip.
   80. phredbird Posted: October 03, 2012 at 12:52 PM (#4252465)
its an unfortunate reference with ethnic overtones. but its not so offensive that he needs to be disciplined, let alone fired. has there been an outcry from japanese organizations?

if i had let it slip, i'd be embarassed; i'd even apologize if i felt like i needed to after talking to some asian acquaintances or somebody smarter than me about this sort of thing.

it doesn't make cone a bad person.

the usual absurd reductionist pseudo-logic and phony outrage-at-the-outrage in these threads is getting boring.

my bad, i should have just skipped this thread, really.
   81. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 03, 2012 at 01:10 PM (#4252491)

My feeling is that unless there is some malicious intent behind what he said then there shouldn't even been an issue


I don't think ignorance should get a pass. That said, I don't think this even rises to ignorance.
   82. Spectral Posted: October 03, 2012 at 01:15 PM (#4252499)
#70 - Good point, that hadn't occurred to me. I hear that all the time, and I don't think anything of it. In fact, it just seems colorful. Maybe it's because soccer has so much international flavor associated with it, but that doesn't seem like it's a very good explanation. After all, baseball's quite international too.

#79 - Absolutely. They're remarkably precise if you're skilled enough with them, but they sure are hard to learn with.
   83. Gaelan Posted: October 03, 2012 at 01:21 PM (#4252505)
Oh, and eating with chopsticks is civilized. You eat slower and enjoy your food more.
   84. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: October 03, 2012 at 01:28 PM (#4252515)
Okay, but Ichiro is actually Japanese and everyone knows this. I've had Japanese friends have me to dinner and we ate with chopsticks. You want offensive, serve a stubby fingered Oklahoman rice and only give him a chopstick to eat it with.


See, there's your problem right there. You're supposed to use two chopsticks.
   85. Srul Itza Posted: October 03, 2012 at 01:39 PM (#4252524)
Again, you may not agree, and that's fine. I knew plenty of asians in school who, if born on Long Island, had to answer "what do they eat where you're from?" questions.


Out here, some families use chopsticks for dinner regardless of the nature of the meal. My Nisei father-in-law and my wife use chopsticks for everything at home, including eggs, pie, cake and other items that would seem to call out for a fork.

   86. PreservedFish Posted: October 03, 2012 at 01:43 PM (#4252530)
I went to college with a white hippy girl that ate everything with chopsticks. She brought her own chopsticks to the dining hall. It was ####### annoying.
   87. PreservedFish Posted: October 03, 2012 at 01:47 PM (#4252535)
I think my favorite utensil arrangement is what they do in Thailand: fork in left hand, spoon in right hand.

edit > Although I also like the Ethiopian sourdough bread shovel.
   88. phredbird Posted: October 03, 2012 at 01:53 PM (#4252544)
Oh, and eating with chopsticks is civilized. You eat slower and enjoy your food more.


you've never eaten at lee hou on clement st.
   89. Depressoteric feels Royally blue these days Posted: October 03, 2012 at 01:54 PM (#4252545)
I went to college with a white hippy girl that ate everything with chopsticks. She brought her own chopsticks to the dining hall. It was ####### annoying.
I know exactly the type you're thinking of and yes dear lord those people are insufferable.
   90. SandyRiver Posted: October 03, 2012 at 01:58 PM (#4252549)
I'm pretty sure that most black people I know would not appreciate something like, "He's got so much eyeblack on he looks like a coon."

Appropo of nothing...
Maine Coon (a very large semi-longhair) is a recognized breed at cat shows. Were I to be carrying such a feline toward a show and an African American asked the breed, could I tell him/her the truth?
   91. Depressoteric feels Royally blue these days Posted: October 03, 2012 at 02:00 PM (#4252551)
I do want to shout out in agreement with those who say that chopsticks can be frustrating as all hell to eat with (especially non-sticky rice!) if you're unfamiliar with the instrument, but that the learning curve isn't actually too terribly difficult. I just sort of blundered my way into acceptable proficiency by trying over and over again at various sushi restaurants, and now while I wouldn't call myself an expert (slippery noodles in particular can be a disaster) I can definitely hack it at public events without embarrassing myself.

Also, I completely agree with those who point out that one advantage of chopsticks -- for the non-native users, at least -- is that they force you to eat slower, which is just a good thing in every possible way (from the health benefits of filling up before you can stuff your gullet full, to the simple fact that you'll enjoy your food and your dinner conversation more if you have time to talk and not relentless cram yourself full).

However, none of that applies to native (or exceptionally proficient) users of chopsticks: it's AMAZING, absolutely break-the-laws-of-space-time amazing, how quickly some of my Korean and Japanese friends are able to use chopsticks to eat. It's actually visually impressive, really: they wield those suckers like a samurai wields katanas.
   92. Depressoteric feels Royally blue these days Posted: October 03, 2012 at 02:04 PM (#4252552)
Maine Coon (a very large semi-longhair) is a recognized breed at cat shows. Were I to be carrying such a feline toward a show and an African American asked the breed, could I tell him/her the truth?
Hilariously, something almost EXACTLY LIKE THIS happened to me (not to me, actually, but in my presence). Nice middle-aged white lady who I know was carrying her Maine Coon with her when a sweet old black grandmotherly type stopped to googly-eye over it. They got to chatting about the kitty-cat. She asked the breed. The proud owner didn't even pause before cheerily announcing it, very loud.

Hugely awkward pause for a few seconds.

Then I actually interjected "no really, that's actually the technical name of the breed!" just to make sure the poor old grandma wasn't going to take it the wrong way.

As it turned out, it wasn't a problem. But ennnhhh....definite "oh man this is not good" moment there.
   93. Gaelan Posted: October 03, 2012 at 02:05 PM (#4252557)
What's amazing is how well a five year old child can eat with chopsticks. Meanwhile my five year old can barely hold a pencil.
   94. Dale Sams Posted: October 03, 2012 at 02:07 PM (#4252561)
"That's a hell of a peace pipe Ellsbury is carrying there Michael"

"Well, he'll make big wampum in 2014 David."
   95. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: October 03, 2012 at 02:08 PM (#4252563)
What's amazing is how well a five year old child can eat with chopsticks. Meanwhile my five year old can barely hold a pencil.

Hunger is a great motivator!
   96. smileyy Posted: October 03, 2012 at 02:14 PM (#4252574)
[4] C'mon...that's pronounced "Me so solly!"
   97. smileyy Posted: October 03, 2012 at 02:18 PM (#4252579)
Also, he does kind of swing the bat like a chopstick, at least metaphorically. In the same ways that sluggers are metaphorically depicted swinging tree trunks. So I can understand how an idea in his head went so wrong in coming out of his mouth.

Reminds me a little of the opening bit in Louis CK's Chewed Up. Which probably makes me a little bit racist. But everyone's a little bit racist, sometimes.
   98. bjhanke Posted: October 03, 2012 at 02:29 PM (#4252592)
"Maine Coon (a very large semi-longhair) is a recognized breed at cat shows. Were I to be carrying such a feline toward a show and an African American asked the breed, could I tell him/her the truth?"

Of course. You haven't called the person anything. You haven't made any allusions to their race in describing what they do. It's not the same situation at all. BTW, David Cone's indiscretion or whatever wasn't anywhere near calling a black person a "coon." It might have been stereotyping, but it was a really really mild version. OTH, my response is not the one anyone cares about. If I wanted to know whether what Cone said was a problem, I'd ask someone with a Japanese heritage. I'm mostly German and Scots-Irish. I would object strongly to someone making a Nazi joke at the expense of my German last name. But Cone didn't get anywhere near anything as offensive as "Nazi." - Brock Hanke (Brock is an old Anglo-Saxon word for badger. Hanke is German for haunch. So my name actually means "Badger Butt.")
   99. JJ1986 Posted: October 03, 2012 at 02:34 PM (#4252596)
David Cone's indiscretion


This phrase usually refers to something else.
   100. The Yankee Clapper Posted: October 03, 2012 at 02:39 PM (#4252601)
I suppose the professional outrage industry can make something of this, but I'm not seeing it. Ichiro is a wizard with the bat - hitting the ball while actually leaving the batters box. That's not unlike the wizardry of an adept chopstick user who can do things that the untrained, or inept, user, such as myself, can't come close to doing.
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