Monday, September 21, 2015

Delicious Cow / ういしい / 好吃牛

A sign from a local restaurant that specializes in beef dishes.  The crazy-looking cow has "Delicious" written in its eyes.

Actually, speaking of beef, it's kind of interesting that there is a not-insignificant number of people in Taiwan who don't eat beef.  In the US, I think most people associate not eating beef with Hinduism, but Taiwan is not exactly filled with Hindus.  The reason, as far as I understand it, is that many people who come from farming families used to feel that they were in debt to their cattle.  Cattle were working animals who helped you keep your family fed by making planting crops easier.  The idea of eating animals who put in such hard work for you was just unthinkable.

However, if you ask people why they don't eat beef, many of them will tell you simply "My family doesn't eat beef".  I think some people legitimately don't know what the reason is, but it's a family tradition.  I imagine the attitude is similar to the one that has resulted in many Americans being grossed out at the idea of eating horse meat, even though most Americans are not farmers--or in any contact with horses at all--in this day and age.  The idea that horses are not for eating has just been passed down in our culture from the days back when many people were in regular, symbiotic relationships with horses.








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