Take out, For Here

Pictured above is a sign I saw hanging outside of a restaurant in downtown Tokushima. There are three things I find amusing about it:

1) Even though it’s written in pretty good English (no spelling mistakes, word order is okay, etc.) I’m still not exactly sure what they’re trying to say. Because it sounds like a paradox: the only way to get food “to go” is if you’re eating at the restaurant. Or maybe they’re trying to say that you can only get take out food as a doggie bag, after you’ve eaten some of it in the restaurant? I dunno…

2) Either way, I don’t get the need for the policy in the first place. They apparently have the means to accommodate “to go” orders, so why even bother making the sit down customer stipulation? They want people’s money, people want their food, so who cares where they eat it? Actually, it seems to me that a take out customer would be preferable to a sit down customer, since the former isn’t taking up a seat in your restaurant that could go to someone else.

3) And finally, I find it amusing (and unlikely) that an English language sign like this is even necessary in the first place. Tokushima isn’t Tokyo or Osaka; even downtown, I hardly ever see any other foreigners. This is the only time I can think of that I’ve seen an English sign for the benefit of non-Japanese readers (outside of airports and train stations). Were there really that many foreigners demanding take out food from this one restaurant that they needed this sign? I wonder if they just had one crazy Australian asshole that made a big ruckus about not being able to get food to go, and they thought, “Never again! We need a sign!”

  • Hi,

    I’m just getting started with my new blog. Would you want to exchange links on our blog-rolls?

    BTW – I’m up to about 100 visitors per day.

  • Just wanted to say HI. I found your blog a few days ago on Technorati and have been reading it over the past few days.

  • My money’s on the lone asshole theory.

  • Lars Martinson

    Hey Dan: Thanks for the interest, but I actually don’t even have a blogroll on my site…

    Vogdoid: Yup, that’s what I think too.

  • Kara

    Is take-out very common in Japan? I remember seeing a program about McDonald’s and how the drive-through concept took a while to catch on in China. Most people would get their food from the drive-through, then park and take it inside the restaurant to eat it. Maybe these owners just don’t get the idea of “to go.”

  • Lars Martinson

    No, take-out is about as common as it is in the US, I think. In addtion to American style fast food, they also have take-out bento places, pizza delivery, all that stuff…