Sunday, July 4, 2010

Five Faces of Four.

"You're open today?"

Yeah, why not? The good stuff doesn't happen until it gets dark enough for fireworks. The hot dogs are in the fridge for when I get home. But I think the guy who asked me that will have a possibly better evening, though I neglected to ask him what condiments he'd be putting on his dogs to go with this bottle. You're right, probably not his menu.

Neither of us could read the artist's name, though, not even with glasses. It was, in 1979, Domoto Hisao. Never heard of him, but not for want of his achievements. Japanese born, lived in Paris awhile, well shown and well awarded for his work.

Also in the news today: Takeru Kobayashi was arrested at the annual Coney Island Fourth of July hot dog eating contest. Also from Japan, "The Tsunami" perfected the form that kept him unchallenged for years, until Joey "Jaws" Chestnut mimicked him and then defeated him three years in a row. This year Kobayashi didn't compete. He refused to sign a contract with Major League Eating because he wanted to remain a free-agent, compete in independent eating contests. With a last minute change of heart, though, he went to Coney Island, hung in the crowd during the contest (won by Chestnut), and then was arrested trying to crash the gate and get onto the stage after. Serious hot dog drama, who'da thunk?

What makes America great? Hebrew Nationals, Japanese art, Kabuki at Coney Island, French wine and a spectacular show courtesy of China.