Much thanks Hisashi for this new explanation. Although I first learned in this Forum that Japanese copyright was strict, it was your various examples like this which taught me better.Sewer King wrote:. . . Relatively few photos taken by soldiers themselves, and many are not widely published, or available outside Japan?hisashi wrote:Japaneses, including officers, were poor in European standard, so private photo was scarce from the outset. Unlike German PK, newspaper reporters took most of Japanese wartime pics. They know the copyright of them had expired, so they seldom publish them. They offer some of them only for private paper publication from their computer database, because the database is protected by copyright and by frequent maintenance it has endless copyright life. I once asked how much should I pay for a pic in my web site and they offered more than 30,000 JPY per a pic annually.
Some Japanese reporters themselves seem evident in a few photos we have seen in other threads, such as here at Beidaying Barracks in China. Is it safe to assume any man with a camera (in uniform or not) was a news reporter, as in this earlier photo of soldiers fishing? Then, it was they who took most of the pics we’ve seen of military cooking and messing. Apart from the Japanese love of good food, it seems natural for them to look for scenes of busy cooks and troops happily eating their meal. There seem to be more of genuine pics then posed ones, even if both show mostly ideal situations.
A few latter-day Japanese movies may have furthered this picture of the harsh Japanese NCO (i.e.,Ōshima Nagisa’s Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence (1983)). Although we know that even good movies are still only movies, I suppose this stereotype is commonly thought in Japan too.Sewer King wrote:. . . Some of those [kitchen pics with watchful NCOs like this one] may have been posed, but the Imperial Japanese gun-so is often portrayed as driving his men with fist, boot, or wooden staff.hisashi wrote:Standardly it was not correct. Typically it was senior sailors/soldiers who physically abused juniors. Gun-so scolded the juniors and later the seniors 'educated' juniors by their fist. NCOs using their own fist were said "You must learn to delegate jobs . . ."
- Until he died in 2007, I worked sometimes with a Korean construction chief named Choi who had fought in Vietnam with the ROK Marine Corps. He told me some of what sounds the same delegation of punishment there. Corporals might hit the lower ranks, who expected it so, for mistakes. Is it fair to say that today’s Korean military discipline started from that of the IJA?
My late mother was a teenager in occupied Philippines (Rizal Province). She was in scared awe to see IJA soldiers ordinarily struck hard blows to the face, with the fist as she emphasized it to me.
Another thread mentioned a gunner scrubbing the deck of battleship Yamato. He knew that any appearance of slowing work could get him a boot in the ribs from the petty officer. But he feared a worse punishment -– being taken off of the night’s bathing roster.
- In the old US Army, it was told not to use kitchen duty as punishment, since the result will show up in the food and no one would do a good job thereafter. Instead, it was recommended to give cooking some pride as a matter of skill.
Watering the alcohol drink is an ancient practice, of course. Everyone knows that sellers would do it to raise profit. But since I myself drink only little, I never fully understood why drinkers commonly accepted it. My only guess is that many ordinary taverns did the same thing, so buyers had no choice and sellers’ reputation had little risk. Richer taverns with richer drinkers might not dilute their drinks and have better reputations (but higher prices). If so in old Europe and America, maybe so in old Japan too?Sewer King wrote:. . . My limited understanding of saké drinking was that filling to top of wooden square masu (originally for rice measuring) was originally to show fair, exact measure of the drink you paid for. Perhaps this was the origin of pouring coffee to above top?hisashi wrote:Aha, maybe. Until various package became available, sake, miso, rice were all sold by measure. So shops could blend various sake (etc.), or even water, in exchange for the risk to their reputation.
I imagine the measuring of rationed foods as a serious matter for Japanese civilians at home in WW2. As in the other countries at war, I guess that there were aid associations or agencies that advised civilians how to cope with shortage and difficulties.
- As Hisashi hinted, routine food purchases by civilians needed arrangements we don’t think of today with our modern materials and packaging. Civilians on other countries’ homefronts brought their own containers for grocers to fill, as in this idealized pic of a well-stocked German grocer dispensing sauerkraut for a shopper.
- From Cwiertka’s Modern Japanese Cuisine, pages 128-129:
These jars would be glazed inside, and apparently used like the various glass jars for home canning around the world. However, the one in the picture does not show how it was closed or sealed, since it has no fastener or screw thread. Probably there were other types or sizes of these jars? Would they be brought back to distributors for refill with rationed foodstuffs?. . . [without canned foods,] the home front had to make do with the ceramic substitutes patented by the Great Japan Air Defense Provisions Co. They used the same principle of food conservation in metal cans -– sterilization by heat in a hermetically sealed container –- and could be safely stored in case of emergency.
author’s source: Shin shūzōhin ten, an exhibition at Edo Tokyo Museum, 16 Aug-21 Sep 2002
The date from the caption suggests the jars’ usefulness long after the war, during Japan’s hard times of postwar shortage. What is printed on this one?
If serving sake in masu was to avoid suspicion of cheated drinks, something similar could be seen in the US Navy’s own whiskey issue up to 1862. Sailors would line up orderly before one of their own who carefully poured the exact measure of liquor into a cup for each man to drink, one after the other. A petty officer wrote down each man’s serving for record.
On IJN ships, was bottled beer for the crew typically stored in the shubo? Even unchilled, one bottle once for each crewman would take a lot of space. One of our earliest tellings (post 10) had it that bottled beer was regular issue, but this seems unsustainable. Hisashi told that alcohol issue was for pre-battle morale toast, and we have seen one pic of a special-occasion spread on a ship’s deck with beer bottles at settings.
I imagined a few cases where a few sailors might not be drinkers, and so they didn’t take a bottle. In the old US Army (early 19th century), a soldier who did not drink his alcohol issue was paid it in cash instead. But there it was argued whether or not US soldiers and sailors should be issued any alcohol at all, an argument which would not even arise in European or Imperial Japanese forces.
Presumably the war didn’t change alcohol ration for the IJN at least? Earlier (in post 412), it was mentioned that saké brewing declined during the Pacific war, as would be expected. I suppose that most brewing reduced only to fill military, industrial, and medical needs.
Hisashi, thank you for this short ‘tour’. So it is not unusual as I first thought, for some military-associated places to continue serving today. I thought that very few might have survived the bombing. And moreover, I imagined that if any restaurant was associated with the IJN, it was brighter in memory than if it had been the IJA.Sewer King wrote:. . . If the IJN admirals had any such favorite restaurants, it would be interesting if any survived the war, or carried on their names though the Navy itself is gone . . .hisashi wrote:http://hitosara.com/0004002534/special.html
Yamamoto Isoroku was an executive officer of Kasumigaura naval air group, a training wing, 1924-1925. Then he personally became close to the master's family of a restaurant Kagetsuro. It is still there and serving. Charles Lindbergh had visited Kagetsuro when he visited Kasumigaura in 1931. (the 2nd pic from bottom)
Restaurant 'Komatsu' in Yokosuka is still calling themselves as 'Kaigun Ryotei Komatsu'.
Hotel/restaurant Banshoro in Sasebo was also famous among navy men.
During wartime shortages and rationing, the admiralty’s favorite restaurants might have found it difficult to keep up their good service. Unless, possibly, their naval popularity got them good supply connection? After the war I would guess the Navy association was not so much focused until more recent years, as was said earlier about the recent ‘Navy curry’ rivalry between former IJN port cities (in post 351). Probably only few customers there would be interested in a restaurant’s old naval history today?
Thanks again Hisashi. I remember some of your past explanation about military history publication in today’s Japan. Some of this same difference of interest can be found here in the US of course. But I always felt that enough of mechanic fans will “graduate” their interest to other mil-history areas like army doctrine, politics, logistics, biography, etc. Mechanical fandom is introductory for many.novices, especially when they are young.Sewer King wrote:. . . Unlike those of WW2, are there fewer memoirs and accounts about WW1 maybe even in Japanese?hisashi wrote:There are, not as many as for WWII, basically because so few Japanese soldiers engaged in WWI relative to WWII. But very few of military buff are historian; mostly mechanic fan. They do not buy them so nobody publish old memoirs.
Not only the fewer Japanese participants in WW1, but I thought it was also the remoteness of that war itself. The WW1 Mediterranean was among the farthest-away places Japanese forces have served. In the US this is similar to lesser common interest in the far-away Napoleonic Wars, something of a specialty interest. Especially, when compared to high interest in the American Civil War. Some buffs half-joke that the Civil War is still being fought here today!
I found one possible explanation of the dish’s name:hisashi wrote:. . . Japanese 'Hayashi Rice', hashed meats with brown sauce on rice, is also a cuisine appeared in Japanese civilian restaurants and more or less served in barracks . . .Sewer King wrote:My daughter found the following [recipe] for me, in a traveler’s guidebook, to go with Hisashi’s references . . . It looks as good a soldier’s dish as others we have seen. From this recipe we can also see that it should be easy to make in large amounts, like curry rice.
But, who was Hayashi?
If so, better to say it was just a Japanized pronouncing of the word “hashed” (or even French haché, from which ‘hash’ came as English term). And not after someone named Hayashi, as I first imagined.. . . there are some dishes which we foreigners think of as being completely Japanese since they occur nowhere else [but in Japan], for example chicken rice, curry rice, and Hayashi rice. Yet all are adaptations which have [undergone] a great change in Japan. Chicken rice is a ketchup-flavored cross between pilaf and fried rice; kare raisu (curry rice) was obviously once Indian; Hayashi rice was, despite its native name, perhaps once North American –- Hayashi is how the Japanese originally understood “hashed.”
White, Merry I. and Barnet, Sylvan. Comparing Cultures: Reading on Contemporary Japan for American Writers. (Bedford Books, St. Martin’s Press, 1995), page 68
Continued from earlier, about the change of foodways in a changing Japan:
In much of her culinary history Japan imported other countries’ cookery, rather than exported her own. Only in the past four decades did some of Japanese cuisine become well-known abroad. Naturally in both cases, each culture modified the other one’s dishes.hisashi wrote:. . . Especially, sushi in modern style has very short history, after refrigerator became common in reasonable restaurants. Americans added avocado (California) roll to its tradition, but many others have been added by us ourselves.
I remember a few news items from 2006, saying that there was an effort in Japan to set standards for sushi. My impression was that because it became so widespread in the world, and its styles gone ”out of control” -– maybe so in Japan too? And thus, some purists in its home country felt that this was not proper sushi, which needed to be better defined.
- Long ago in this thread’s starting post 1 I wondered about sea cucumber (namako), because it was mentioned among examples of IJA ration foodstuffs (only once, not typical). Long ago, Hisashi explained its normal modern eating (and as possible in the IJA too, although not eaten by many Japanese), in post 8.
Only recently I tasted sea cucumber for the first time, at a restaurant in New York. It was in sushi but I did not like it, finding it was just as told above. Surely, sea cucumber was not used in sushi before? If not, it would be of one of those more recent designs of sushi that Hisashi mentioned.
- In 1983 the air force sent me to the former Strategic Air Command (SAC) HQ base in Omaha, Nebraska. There in the heart of US beef country, I had a fine steak dinner with all courses that cost as little as $7 at the SAC dining hall. On the other hand a good seafood dinner in Omaha, so far from the coasts, could cost $18 and up (with few places serving them). Even allowing for cultural difference of beef vs. seafood there, modern refrigerated distribution was still expensive. To me, it seemed that seafood dinner in Nebraska was more for special occasion.
- There seems at least one military influence upon sushi –- the gūnkanmaki (軍艦巻, “warship roll"). It was said to have been invented at a restaurant in 1941, which suggests that it celebrated early Pacific victories. Or, maybe it celebrated the Navy in general? In any case, the name continues today simply for the shape. Apparently sushi was already opened to some “new designs” by that time?
This says how crowded it was indeed –- not including the other unpleasant conditions down in the bottom of that 30-year-old battleship. Soldiers comparing their shipboard bunking to sushi roll would be widely understood, even if they themselves seldom enjoyed sushi as food. I suppose their officers at least had some better accommodations.john whitman wrote:. . . men of the 36th Infantry squeezed themselves so tightly into temporary shelves built into battleship Kongo’s bottom, that the soldiers compared themselves to the stuffing in a sushi roll.
In many ways it seems that the IJA and IJN spread the new dishes and foodways, more than they actually created them. Author Katarzyna Cwiertka broadly made this point in her book, much quoted earlier. But I have not seen it told that the Imperial military was in the best position to do this -– the Navy especially. This is not so self-evident as it first sounds, because of:
- The military’s command of technology. Wasn’t the military the largest group in Imperial Japan to need refrigeration, food processing, shipping and railroad links, research, etc?
An army and navy also have steady demand, funding, and continuity. They must feed large numbers of their men regularly in many far places, every day of the year.