他们的省份到底有完没完?——卡尔文·特里林

浮生书斋

来自: 浮生书斋(愿美好的文字温暖你我... ...) 2016-11-10 11:52:15

  • 浮生书斋

    浮生书斋 (愿美好的文字温暖你我... ...) 2016-11-10 11:53:09

    英文原文:
    Have they run out of provinces yet?

    Have they run out of provinces yet?
    If they haven’t, we’ve reason to fret.
    Long ago, there was just Cantonese.
    (Long ago, we were easy to please.)
    But then food from Szechuan came our way,
    Making Cantonese strictly passé.
    Szechuanese was the song that we sung,
    Though the ma po could burn through your tongue.
    Then when Shanghainese got in the loop
    We slurped dumplings whose insides were soup.
    Then Hunan, the birth province of Mao,
    Came along with its own style of chow.
    So we thought we were finished, and then
    A new province arrived: Fukien.
    Then respect was a fraction of meagre
    For those eaters who’d not eaten Uighur.
    And then Xi’an from Shaanxi gained fame,
    Plus some others—too many to name.

    Now, as each brand-new province appears,
    It brings tension, increasing our fears:
    Could a place we extolled as a find
    Be revealed as one province behind?
    So we sometimes do miss, I confess,
    Simple days of chow mein but no stress,
    When we never were faced with the threat
    Of more provinces we hadn’t met.
    Is there one tucked away near Tibet?
    Have they run out of provinces yet?

    Calvin Trillin

  • 浮生书斋

    浮生书斋 (愿美好的文字温暖你我... ...) 2016-11-10 11:54:57

    80岁的卡尔文·特里林是《纽约客》杂志饮食专栏作家和诗人,酷爱中餐,经常骑着自行车在唐人街附近转悠。今年4月,他在《纽约客》发表了这首打油诗,铺陈中餐菜系太多,几十年来不断入侵西方饮食界,连他这样一个资深吃货都要大喊救命。

    中国人最大的自信来源,非饮食莫属。《舌尖上的中国》之所以风靡神州,除了迎合了我们的胃,也满足了国人对“中华文明源远流长博大精深”的民族想象。特里林这首诗发表后,激起美国华裔作家群体强烈不满,后者抨击该诗种族歧视,白人至上。在各种口诛笔伐下,特里林不得不在《卫报》上通过答记者问进行辩护,称他只是在调侃今日西方的“吃货文化”,以前也以法国饮食等为题写过类似打油诗(潜台词:法国人就没你们这么玻璃心!)。

    我倒不觉得这首诗有很明显或故意的种族歧视,虽然从标题就开始的“他们”高调摆出了“自我”与“他者”的二元对立。但我想其中更突出的是另外两种二元关系:现在(的复杂)与过去(的简单)、已知(的安全)和未知(的紧张)。“那些只有炒面的简单日子,不必心烦意乱/那时我们从不用直面这样的危险/遭遇如此多的省份,见所未见 ”。

    其实,为举不胜举的中式菜系紧张的不仅是站在大洋彼岸习惯了相对简单饮食的西方人,我们在看《舌尖上的中国》时,不也为目不暇接的各地风味惊愕赞叹——原来还有这么多美味没有尝过。人生路上从不缺未知与惊奇,如果这未知与惊奇仅藏在明天要打开的一盒盒料理中,又何尝不是吃货们的福气。

    荐诗 / 唐晓丽
    2016/11/08

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