Many years ago I was walking along the river on an evening constitutional with a Chinese friend the topic of differences in food came up.

I asked him whether or not he had eaten dog very often. 

He said, "yes", and we paced for a while.

It occurred to me that if different types of chickens or cows taste different, then perhaps different types of dogs would also.

"What is your favorite type of dog?", I queried.

He thought about that for a while and returned with "Yellow Dog."

I was instantly amused at the idea of eating certain Democrats, but I didn’t think that is what he meant.

In any event, our walk continued with my suspicion confirmed: yes, different dogs do have different flavors after all!

If you don’t like surprises, it would probably be a good idea when you go to China to learn the characters and words for companion animals.

With that as a preamble, I tip my biretta to Sancte Pater o{]:¬) without whom I might never have learned of this story in the Daily Mail.

China’s first man in space reveals astronauts ate dog meat to keep up their strength

By Allan Hall

China’s first man in space has revealed that the menu on his spacecraft included dog meat – to keep the astronaut’s strength up.

Yang Liwei, who commanded the Shenzhou Five mission in 2003, revealed canine menu samples that were on-board his craft along with chicken and fish.  [Yes, that "canine menu samples" must be food from dogs, not food for dogs.]

In his autobiography ‘The Nine Levels between Heaven and Earth’ he said: ‘Many of my friends are curious about what we eat in space and think that the astronauts must have some expensive delicacies, like shark’s fin or abalone. [That was not my guess, though I too am curious about space menus.  I am toying right now with facetious comments about the old Space Food Sticks and playing "fetch".]

‘Actually we ate quite normal food, there is no need to keep it a secret,’ he added, listing chicken, steamed fish and dog meat from Huajiang county in Guangdong. [New meanings for the term "doggy bag".]

Chinese nutritional experts recommend dog meat, especially in winter months.

Finding dog meat, bones and even skulls – they are boiled to make broth – in Chinese supermarkets, particularly in the north of the country, is by no means unusual.  [Yes, there is a breed of Chinese dog called the "Chow".]

Germans and Swiss were recently horrified to find that St. Bernard dogs – traditionally associated with rescuing avalanche victims in the Alpine regions of both countries – are now bred in China on special farms for their flesh[OH… THE CANINITY!  But, think about it.  If you are going to eat a lot of dog, and therefore breed them for meat, wouldn’t you opt for da gou rather than xia gou, big dog rather than little dog, for your source of  xiangrou;  I mean… it stands to reason, no?]

The dogmeat menu was still in use last year, when Chinese astronauts conducted their first ever spacewalk.

If China has its way, it will be served when the country accomplishes its goal of a man-on-the-moon in 2030[And now I am thinking about moondogs.  Come to think of it, the Moon’s Mare Crisium is sometimes thought to be the "man in the moon’s" little dog.  Mare Crisium is, of course, where the Picard Crater is, named after, yes, Jean Picard, but not Jean-Luc Picard.  If memory serves, there were no dogs on Star Trek.  Though, come to think of it, Data did have a cat…. hmmm…. named "Spot"…. And so we come full circle at last.]

Animal rights campaigners in China were horrified at the revelations.

They believe dog consumption is the preserve of peasants and should not be promoted by people who are in effect the national elite. [What a curiously Chinese argument.  Asking people not to eat dogs just isn’t going to, excuse me, cur-tail their consumption.  At least get famous people not to eat them in public!]

‘Yang Liwei is a role model for so many young people and he is one of China’s greatest heroes,’ said Jill Robinson, the founder of Animals Asia.

‘We hope that he might recognise dogs as the heroes they are too: they found survivors after the Sichuan earthquake and protected people from potential terrorists during the Olympic games. Surely they deserve more.’  [Sorry.  Dogs are not heroes.  Dogs are dogs.  Most people labeled as "heroes" these days aren’t heroes either.]

European astronauts do not have to resort to snacking on man‘s best friend.  [I should think not!]

One of Germany’s Michelin-star chefs now cooks for the crew of the International Space Station (ISS).  [Just think about that.]

Harald Wohlfahrt, [A fitting name for a chef cooking for people who are decidedly going traveling.  Lord.. you just can’t make this up!] fifty-two year old chef of the prestigious Schwarzwaldstube Restaurant in Germany’s Black Forest, was recruited to spice up what was a down-to-earth menu. [And dog on the menu wouldn’t do that?]

Chef Wohlfahrt began revamping the tubed and tinned paste food about 18 months ago when he first learned that the astronauts were eating healthy but less tasty meals because of the special requirements of space.

Salt accelerates bone loss, vitamin D must be added due to lack of sunlight, and sauces can’t be used for fear of spills, [Okay… I wanted to go into space before… but…. ] which, in a weightless environment, could damage electrical equipment with potentially disastrous results. [Yahhhhhh…. that whole Bearnaise Sauce and Oxygen Distribution Circuit combo… not such a good idea.]
Foods also need to be highly seasoned, because astronauts’ sense of taste is diminished in outer space. [On airplanes too, btw.]

Astronaut Frank De Winne gave Wohlfahrt’s new menu a taste test prior to his launch into space and gave the food an enthusiastic thumbs up.

Admittedly there was plenty of room for improvement[I should think Chineeese cuisine might help.]

Wohlfahrt tasted some standard astronaut fare before beginning his space food project. ‘I felt sorry for the astronauts,’ he told the Süddeutsche Zeitung. ‘It tasted like cat food.’  [I’m sorry… but how does he know what cat food tastes like?  And are we dealing once again with food for cat or food from cat.  Data and I both want answers!]

He now offers Swabian potato soup, braised veal cheeks [OH! The BOVINITY!] with wild mushrooms and plum compote.

I’m must now go grocery shopping.  For hot dogs.

"But Father! But Father!", you are surely saying in frustration.  "You gave us that story about ‘Yellow Dog’ at the top and just left it!  Did you never find out what ‘Yellow Dog’ meant?"

Indeed I did, and thanks for reminding me.

We walked along, sometimes in silence, sometimes speaking of this or that.

All of a sudden, he tugged my sleeve.

Here came someone woking … sorry walking his dog on that beautiful evening.  A beautiful, happy, – yes – Golden Retriever.

As they passed he pointed back over his shoulder and said – what a wag he was – and said very quietly….

"Yellow Dog."

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in "But Father! But Father!", Fr. Z's Kitchen, Lighter fare, SESSIUNCULA. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Ferde Rombola says:

    Are you stuck for something to do today, Father?

  2. wanda says:

    Father Z., I could have gone a whole lifetime without this information. You have a wide range of interests, I must say.

    Buy some non-dog hot dogs, o.k.? Promise?

  3. Sedgwick says:

    So uh, after Yang ate the dog meat, was he hungry an hour later? Should he have picked one dog from Column A and one from Column B?

  4. The Cobbler says:

    “Foods also need to be highly seasoned, because astronauts’ sense of taste is diminished in outer space. [On airplanes too, btw.]”
    You’d think if airlines wanted to cut down on complaints about their food and this claim were true they’d just let people bring their own lunches and see that even normal food tastes like airplane food on an airplane. Or are we being joking? With this topic I really can’t tell.

  5. Frank H says:

    Hmmm. This must explain why the Chinese restaurants are not too far from the pet stores in many strip malls.

  6. Rob Cartusciello says:

    In Vietnam there is a well known hierarchy of dogs that provide the best meat. I don’t recall the whole list, but yellow dog was at the top.

    I was stationed in Mexico with two Vietnamese-American Jesuits. Barking dogs were a constant annoyance at night. They used to threaten to find a few dogs and cook them for dinner one night.

    Maybe you had to be there….

    For the record, Icelandic horsemeat (foal) makes for excellent eating.

  7. bluesky74656 says:

    “Mare Crisium is, of course, where the Picard Crater is, named after, yes, Jean Picard, but not Jean-Luc Picard. If memory serves, there were no dogs on Star Trek. Though, come to think of it, Data did have a cat…. hmmm…. named “Spot”…. And so we come full circle at last.”

    Captain Archer from “Enterprise” had a dog named “Porthos.”

    Also, the Lionfish in Captain Picard’s ready-room was named Livingston.

  8. Wow… I read that article yesterday and had NO IDEA that I would get such a complete breakdown today… from … you.

    Is this because you aren’t eligible for the Cannonball Catholic Awards over at The Crescat?

    Many of us are FIGHTING for our lives today…

    Hmm… I wonder if DOGS can vote?

  9. Theodorus says:

    Frank H, what are you suggesting? How many Chinese restaurants have you seen have dog or cat meat in their menus? I was from China, and I don’t know anyone among my family and friends who has ever tasted or even had the interest in pet meat. Eating dogs or cats is disgusting enough, and your generalization is no less disgusting.

  10. Dr. Eric says:

    Gua yang tou mai gou rou

    “Hanging out a sheep’s head to sell dog meat” is an old Chinese proverb.

    Also, I have here before me a text on Medicinal Herbs from the Beijing College of Traditional Chinese Medicine. I wanted to see if there were any uses for dog in TCM. Well, there is only one entry for dog parts. It is, well, the -ahem- the “undercarriage,” to use a euphemism. According to the text, it is for older men, if you get what I mean.

  11. mitch_wa says:

    When I was in rome with a group from my college our group leader (a jesuit) asked a passerby why there are so many less cats than he remebered from he lived there before and she said something along the lines of “Father, we have quite a few more chinese restaurants now”… lol. At one Chinese restaurant we ate at near the Corso there was one soup on the menu called three suprise soup, one of my friends ordered it and he could identify two of the suprise meats but alas not the third…

  12. Frank H says:

    Theodorus –

    It was a joke! Relax!

  13. Theodorus says:

    OK, Frank, I shall depart in peace :-).

  14. irishgirl says:

    I could NEVER eat dog meat! I love dogs too much!

    I remember reading a story about Dr. Tom Dooley’s brother going to Vietnam and being served dog meat. The doctor hissed at him to eat it, or else the refusal would be taken as a insult to the hosts.

    If someone served me dog meat, and I ate it, I’d probably swear off all meat for good!

    ‘Veal cheeks’? Oooo, that’s gross….!

  15. ghp95134 says:

    Dog meat was removed from Beijing restaurants during the Olympics:

    That also happened during the Olympics in Korea, where it’s called keigogi (not to be confused with bulgogi — barbequed beef) and served with white rice. I asked for some while stationed in Korea in 1989-90, but they just laughed. However, after being assigned to Chejudo I witnessed a group of men on the beach chasing a dog; later as I walked back to my compound, I noticed the dead animal being cooked over a fire, having the hair burned off. Yup … it still happens.

    And, I’d like to try it just to see what it tastes like …. however, I draw the line at a Golden Retriever!!!! Oh! The caninity!

    –Guy Power

  16. Wayne NYC says:

    I also have to ask …slow day Fr.Z?
    These past two weeks saw the forced
    sterilization of 10,000 Chinese through
    coercion and force.Elderly parents and
    young children were held captive in prison
    camps run by the National Health service
    to be released after the people guilty
    of breaking the one child policy laws
    reported for their castrations. This too
    was reported in the UK Daily Mail.
    I find China a uniquely cruel culture…
    excuse my political incorrect attitude.
    One mans “joke” is another mans sorrow.

  17. JohnE says:

    Favorite takeaway: “OH… THE CANINITY!” I might start using this when they show the heart-tugging stories on the news.
    Wokking your dog — that was pretty good too.

    Seriously though, I’d rather not see any dog recipes on Fr. Z’s kitchen, even if they’re served with some fancy sauce and a glass of wine.

  18. Bill in Texas says:

    A few years ago, my dog was a large (150 lb), strikingly handsome Great Dane. One day on our walk, we passed two young Asian men who appeared to be brothers. Seeing Ajax (the Dane), the older punched his brother on the shoulder, pointed to my dog, licked his lips and said, “Oh, look! Dinner!”

    I didn’t even slow down as I replied, “You know, that’s exactly what the dog said when he saw you two.”

    Never heard another comment about dinner from either of them in all the times we encountered each other after that.

    I had a co-worker whose daughter was on the US 1988 Olympic Gymnastics Team. When he came back from Seoul, he told me about seeing crates of dogs in the market that were for sale as food. I said I thought that was terrible. Frank said that wasn’t the worst of it. I asked what could be worse. He said, “When you bought a dog for dinner, they gave you your change in Chihuahuas.”


  19. Daniel Latinus says:

    Sort of reminds me of a manual I once saw to help 4-H kids answer animal rights activists. A potential question given in the manual was, “how can you eat your friends?” If I were a 4-H kid and someone asked me that, it would take all my strength not to reply, “if you can’t eat your friends, who can you eat?”

    Recently, The Curt Jester had a posting about a church having a dog-friendly service. What is it about dog stories that they get people punning?

  20. LouiseA says:

    These comments have gone to the dogs.

  21. Jordanes says:

    Mmmmm . . . . dog . . . .

  22. PomeroyJohn says:

    When Lewis & Clark explored the west back in the early 1800s, they brought along dinner on the hoof or maybe paw in the form of their Newfoundlands. The dogs grow as large as 200 pounds and didn’t have to be packed in. On the return trip after spending winter and early spring on the coast east of Portland OR (Well where Portland is now of course), members of their party were sad that they had to eat so much salmon as most of their dogs had been finished off.

    John in Pomeroy on the Palouse

  23. lucy says:

    Oh, my goodness. What a topic. My gorgeous tri-color collie is sitting here as if to say, “they wouldn’t !) And thinking how blessed he is to live here in our home, safe from my kitchen implements.

  24. Father G says:

    Just remember that while some of us may find the idea of eating dog to be disgusting, there are other cultures that would find the idea of our eating beef equally disgusting.

  25. JohnE says:

    So when they say “That really hits the spot!”, they could very well mean “Spot really hits the spot!”.

  26. Dean says:

    Ehhh. Dog? No.
    I’ll stick to menudo (good for hangovers, too) or birria.

  27. Roland de Chanson says:

    Sign on house: CAVE CANEM.

    Sign on dog house: CAVE SINENSEM.

  28. chcrix says:

    Just remember: eating the redundant dogs as they exhausted their supplies and needed fewer for pulling sleds is what kept Amundsen and his expedition healthy while Scott’s men starved to death.

  29. pcstokell says:

    Microgravity does odd things to folks in orbit. I’m sure the dog meat keeps their senses as shar peis possible.

  30. J Kusske says:

    “Come to think of it, the Moon’s Mare Crisium is sometimes thought to be the ‘man in the moon’s’ little dog.” That might be true for us, but for East Asians they look up and see the rabbit on the moon, and what we might think of as the Man on the Moon’s dog would be a batch of rice dough he is pounding out to make mochi or sticky rice cakes (or in the original legend, pounding out the ingredients to make the elixir of immortality for Chang E, the woman who was taken up to the moon, and the namesake for China’s lunar probes). So for Chinese, eating rabbit would probably be more revolting to them when going to the moon than dog, but I’m only guessing…

  31. catholicmidwest says:

    The idea of eating dog is as repugnant as the idea of eating monkey, which is a practice in some African countries. Both of these are primitive practices and can lead to the spread of disease. YOu realize that humans and dogs, as well as humans and monkeys, can share a significant number of diseases, right?

  32. J Kusske says:

    Catholicmidwest: diseases can easily spread between humans and pigs too, but that doesn’t stop us from eating them. The Swine Flu is called that because it went from pigs to humans. I’m not saying that eating dog ought to be as everyday for us as eating pig or chicken, but it isn’t as huge a difference as Western people viscerally react, IMHO. It’s a cultural difference, and saying that one culture is inherently superior because it doesn’t eat a certain thing seems a bit silly to me. I’d probably not eat dog personally speaking, and I’d want to avoid it here in China as they are treated badly, but in theory I don’t see much wrong.

  33. catholicmidwest says:

    It stops some people. And if they don’t stop keeping all the animals together in Asia, it’s going to be a health disaster.

  34. J Kusske says:

    I agree–the vegetarian position is a very consistent one. True about the origin of various human diseases coming from close proximity to animals, in Western history too. We’ve developed to a high enough level that we’ve become separated enough from farm animals to prevent most of it. As China develops, they’ll come to that point too. I’m more concerned with Southern Chinese/Cantonese/SE Asian practice of eating raw monkey or chicken–that’s quite dangerous. Northern Chinese at least always cook their food!

  35. Margaret says:

    As they passed he pointed back over his shoulder and said – what a wag he was – and said very quietly….

    “Yellow Dog.”

    Maybe I’m just punchy, but that was the funniest thing I’ve read in a long time. Thanks, Fr. Z!

  36. TravelerWithChrist says:

    I noticed Fr. Z, that you put this story in the ‘Fr. Z’s Kitchen’ category.
    Thinking about asking for a dog from your readers?
    You frequently have asian food. I won’t ask the next logical question.

    The first ‘manned’ space flight was a dog, Laika, by the Russians… Perhaps the Chinese will be sending dogs into space next…

    Too bad for the yellow dogs, I was hoping for a different breed.

  37. eulogos says:

    For a while my brother in law was married to a woman who loved horses.
    So when she heard that my husband was a chef in a French restaurant, she asked him “You don’t serve horse, do you?”
    He said, “If one comes in I’ll be sure to refuse to serve him.”
    She hung up on him and wouldn’t speak to him for months.
    True story.
    In my opinion, it is a matter of convention which animals are appropriate to eat and which are not.
    Any of us who was truly hungry would eat any animal, including our own pets if we were hungry enough.
    Susan Peterson

  38. To a certain extent, it’s cultural convention and love of animals or taboo of them. But it also depends on how extraneous the animals are, versus how likely the people are to starve.

    If you’ve got a lot of wild dogs running around tearing things up, or some huge surplus of old plowhorses, you’re more likely to think of them as a food supply for other animals or yourself. If animals are scarce and valued, you’re less likely to think of “recycling” them.

    People don’t usually look at a sports car or favorite toy and think, “Mmmm, let’s disassemble that for parts.”

    There’s also a lot of animals which Western society vaguely associates with “don’t mess with that”, for various reasons. A lot of cultures think of weasels and seals as “clever” animals or “fairy” animals, and some seals even come into folklore as shapeshifters intermarried with the normal humans who live near them. So you gpt situations where everybody else eats seal, but Bob and his family don’t, as a traditional courtesy to their selkie relatives.

  39. bookworm says:

    “when she heard that my husband was a chef in a French restaurant, she asked him “You don’t serve horse, do you?”
    He said, “If one comes in I’ll be sure to refuse to serve him.”

    At one time there was a slaughterhouse in DeKalb, Illinois that processed horsemeat — it was one of the last in the U.S. that did. A couple of years ago the animal rights crowd got all indignant about it and launched a campaign to close it. The legislature introduced a bill to outlaw commercial horse slaughter and none other than Bo Derek (remember her?) showed up to testify in its favor. The bill was passed and the facility was closed, putting about 50 people out of work in the process.

    A year later the state rep from the DeKalb area tried (unsuccessfully) to get it reopened. He noted that ever since it closed, horse owners with old or sick horses that they used to sell to that slaughterhouse were now trucking them off to slaughterhouses in Mexico whose slaughter methods were far more inhumane (usually requiring multiple blows to kill the horse). Other horses were simply being abandoned to die of starvation or disease. So the horsemeat ban had done nothing to promote humane treatment of these horses while putting humans out of work.

    While I love animals (I’ve been a “cat person” all my life) and oppose gratuituous cruelty or neglect toward them, I think putting them on a par with humans is a dangerous idea.

    To say that “animals should be treated like humans” and take away man’s right to use animals for his benefit (as food, transportation, entertainment, etc.) sooner or later turns into “humans don’t deserve any better treatment than animals”. Is it really any coincidence that (as far as I can tell) most animal rights activists couldn’t care less about the slaughter of the unborn?

  40. Jemajo says:

    Reply to bookworm :
    “Is it really any coincidence that (as far as I can tell) most animal rights activists couldn’t care less about the slaughter of the unborn?”

    This is absolutely, and unreservedly the truest line I’ve read on the internet today!
    I remember reading about a judge in the UK who convicted someone for cruelty to a stick insect because someone put it in a glass jar without enough food or water! OK, I don’t approve of letting anything suffer, but how well does this judge sleep at night with the hundreds of abortions happening every day?
    I’ve had it to the teeth with people telling me the world is overpopulated with humans, but they fight for the endangered species and the protection of rainforests, but not giving a hoot about the people who will starve without the food or farm land.
    As for eating my dog? Well, if we were starving in the middle of a famine, then I might consider disguising the meat someway so my family might eat, but I don’t think I’d ever enjoy it! I don’t feel this way about the sheep, but I’ve yet to take one for a walk…

  41. catholicmidwest says:

    Chinese culture can be cruel and pagan. Buddhism can, and often does, contribute to a very selfish attitude and it says nothing to human rights. If you don’t like who you are, wait and come back as someone else, right? According to Buddhism, you deserve where you are and what you have. It’s all about you, after all. This attitude is predominant among Buddhists, but also predominant among casual Buddhists, ex-Buddhists and Asianists (radical Asian cultural partisans. And yes, Chinese are often very racist.) It’s ingrained in the culture. It makes them not fun to work with on a daily basis. I work with Chinese and have seen, and talked about this with them, first hand.

    So, if you bring up the dog thing, regardless of the fact that they supposedly believe in trans-species reincarnation, you’ll just get a laugh. It’s a big ribald bloody joke. Dogs deserve what they get, according to their view.

    Humane treatment has nothing to do with it. Humane treatment of anything or anyone out of altuism or justice is about as far from the usual Chinese view as the moon. You buy humane treatment or you don’t get it. It’s your lot in life if you can pay for it; it’s your lot in life if you can’t. [shoulder shrug]

    Currently in Taiwan at least, Indonesians are imported as medical aides and paid very, very poorly–far below the subsistence rate but kept in household. The money is often sent back to Indonesia to the family (read father) or other agent. These aides are virtual slaves. There are no benefits for them. They work 52/24/7. They sign multi-year contracts in order to work. But hey, they’re just Indonesians, right? Subhumans. It’s their lot in life. Karma.

    Moreover, people are things to be managed. This is the forced abortion country, remember? The one where they throw Catholics in jail for decades when they speak out because a) Christianity is a “western religion” and therefore irrelevant to them, as my Chinese acquaintances keep telling me, and b) Christians are inconvenient because they believe things they’ll stand up for.

    Cultural relativism is in fashion right now, particularly among Americans who don’t believe they have a culture. Americans lust after everything they think they don’t have enough of, whatever enough means to them at the time. But they don’t usually have the full story about those cultures and often don’t care to hear it if it’s presented to them in balance.

    A little Chinese food, sure. The Chinese have a genius with food. But there are other things that need to be discouraged. No culture is perfect but the Chinese culture is one of the most flawed.

    And PS, while we’re talking about food, be careful what you eat in a Chinese restaurant. Don’t wear shirts with chinese sayings either. I have it on good authority–a chinese co-worker–that those shirts are translatable all right, but many of them don’t say what people think they say. It’s not “kick me;” it’s usually worse. Big joke on the dumb westerner.

  42. catholicmidwest says:

    PS, I’m not an animal rights nut either. Animals are bred for various purposes and there’s nothing wrong with that, as long as they aren’t wasted, and as long as they’re treated humanely in life and in death. Christ himself ate lamb.

    But even though animals are useful creatures and they’re in our care, their lives are not cruel jokes. To treat them as cruel jokes makes us out to be even crueler jokes, parodies of what we’re supposed to be as human beings.

  43. J Kusske says:

    I actually agree with a fair amount of what you say, Catholicmidwest. The Buddhist mindset has certainly led to fatalism in Asia, and people have not been led to look after the poor and oppressed in consequence. Confucianism teaches against this, but in practice many Chinese didn’t apply it unless it was within the family group, or directly applicable to one’s job. This attitude is still quite prevalent and has to be fought against constantly. John C. H. Wu has written well on this in his _Beyond East and West_: when he converted, it was a sea change in his entire way of living. Highly recommended if you can find it… And as for random Chinese characters on shirts, of course it’s wise not to wear something you can’t read! There’s a pretty lot of shirts over here that say gibberish in English, at best (and sometimes off color messages that are highly embarrassing). I got a kick out of the NBA player who got a tatoo that he thought meant “relentless” but actually meant “indecisive”. Chinese who see him (and there are many, as the NBA is wildly popular here) laugh every time they see it!

  44. bookworm says:

    “Christ himself ate lamb.”

    It’s also worth noting that Old Testament Jewish law — if I remember correctly — required people to rest their animals on the Sabbath as well as themselves. Also, the slaughtering method used by kosher butchers (which requires a single clean stroke which kills the animal instantly; anything beyond that renders the meat “trayf” or not kosher) is actually more humane than what many slaughterhouses use. The Muslim dietary law (halal) requires a similar method of slaughter, plus a prayer of benediction over the animal before it is killed.

  45. catholicmidwest says:

    J Kusske,

    Certainly. Big joke on the dumb Westerner. From the Chinese point of view, he was so dumb he got a cultural jest, a mark of subjection, carved into his very flesh so that he could carry it around for other Chinese to see.

    I cannot understand why so many Westerners are as stupid about the ramifications of such idiocy as they are. They seem to have no sense of the importance of these things.

  46. J Kusske says:

    Well, I think it’s rather amusing too–one should know the meaning of something being tattooed, I think! But the point is, it works both ways. There are so many signs in horrendous English over here (in Japan equally to China, probably Korea too though I can’t vouch for it) that the balance is by no means weighed only in one direction. A sense of proportion and a bit of a sense of humor is very much a necessity in it all, as in the rest of life. That’s one of the positive points of Chinese civilization that shows through the writings of John C. H. Wu, Lin Yutang, and many others. Chinese civilization is not wholly nor even mainly negative, in my opinion–it has quite a number of excellent points. So did Greco-Roman civilization, before it was transformed and refined in Christianity. We can but imagine what China (and the rest of non-Christian East and South Asia) will become once it is; God’s kingdom come, amen!

  47. catholicmidwest says:

    Well, I hope you’re right, J Kusske.

    Pagan chinese culture is an abysmal thing. I hope they are able to bring some perfection to it by infusing Christianity into it. Some chinese are very resistant to Christianity because they see it as a Western influence.

  48. J Kusske says:

    In this 400th anniversary year of the great Italian Jesuit missionary in China Matteo Ricci’s death, I earnestly pray that God truly will baptize China, and East Asia as a whole, into Christendom. And I pray the Western world will be led to embrace its roots too, while He’s at it… The whole world is in need of conversion and continual re-conversion. May we all be pliant to His will, and open to His grace.

  49. chloesmom says:

    Eeeewwww … TMI, Father, TMI!

  50. Desertfalcon says:

    I had a wonderful Golden Retriever once….sniffle, sniffle … :(

  51. Desertfalcon says:

    Should I have said “owned” instead of “had”?

  52. VivaLaMezzo says:

    Meh. I would rather play with a dog than eat one. I’m not crazy about the idea of eating grubs. Horses seem too darn useful to eat. However, protein is protein and animals are animals. Be good stewards, be humane, but beyond that? Meh.

  53. Clinton says:

    China has a goal of a man on the moon by 2030? And we recently blew off a large chunk of NASA! Uh oh…
    We may have gone there first, but it looks like they might be the ones to go and stay.

  54. J Kusske says:

    They’re already there, if you believe the legend of Chang’E and the Jade Rabbit I mentioned up above! But don’t worry, if we ever needed to we could enlist the services of Hou Yi and shoot the moon down the way he did the nine suns that were scorching the earth.

  55. catholicmidwest says:

    Well, VivaLaMezzo,

    I hope you remain far away from me when you get hungry. Not all protein is just protein.

  56. Ed the Roman says:

    For a while my brother in law was married to a woman who loved horses.
    So when she heard that my husband was a chef in a French restaurant, she asked him “You don’t serve horse, do you?”
    He said, “If one comes in I’ll be sure to refuse to serve him.”

    He OUGHT to have said, “only if he’s wearing a tie.”

  57. We had horse in seminary fairly often. Pretty good.

  58. irishgirl says:

    What does ‘TMI” mean? Just curious….

    I still won’t eat dog….ewww….

    Father Z-is horse meat ‘gamey’?

  59. Konichiwa says:

    Dog. It’s kinda like beef or goat depending on how it’s done. I don’t prefer it, but if it’s all I got to work with, then what the heck. I know it’s a common delicacy in Vietnam, Korea, and China. I’ve heard that in some parts of Mexico people have them as part of a nutritious meal too. :)

  60. Bill in Texas says:

    irishgirl: “TMI” = “Too Much Information”

  61. AnAmericanMother says:

    bookworm –

    Actually, it’s worse than that.

    Many people don’t want to pay the freight to Mexico. They don’t even want to pay for feed and hay.

    They simply turn their old and worn-out and unwanted horses out on the road to starve. Literally. They die by the side of the road, or are hit by cars. The horse rescue shelters are full up and overflowing.

    Horse people used to worry that some day we’d come down to the pasture and find tire tracks and your horses gone.

    Now you come down to the pasture and find tire tracks and several horses that weren’t there before.

    Thankfully when my old Thoroughbred mare became unsound I was able to find her a berth with the Special Olympics.

    With that said, I used to feed my show cats horsemeat.

  62. AnAmericanMother says:

    And I have a Yellow Dog.

    I wouldn’t eat her – given the initial cost, the training, the expensive custom dog food, the entry fees, and the vet bills, I figure she would be worth around $500 a pound by now.

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