We’re having loads of fun at the San Diego Comic-Con here in always-sunny San Diego, selling tons of Tentacle Grape and J-List T-shirts and copies of English-translated visual novels, and are saying hi to the many fans who come by the booth to shake hands. Please note that this year we’re in a new location, in booth 4929, rather than our normal spot in the dark recesses of the 100 aisle. Hope to see you during the show!Japan is probably the only country where eating too quietly will get comments from people around you. The correct way of eating Japanese and Chinese noodles like ramen, udon and soba is to slurp them while holding your face near the bowl, sucking in the soup along with the noodles to make both taste delicious. There’s no upper ceiling to how loud you’re allowed to slurp, and making these noises is one way of letting whoever prepared the noodles for you know that you think they’re good. When foreigners come to Japan, they usually eat their noodles without making these noises, prompting Japanese to say 静かですね shizuka desu ne (you eat very quietly, don’t you?). There are some other areas where table manners differ between the Japan and the West. In Japan, it’s perfectly okay to pick up your ramen bowl and drink the soup from it directly, although drinking out of a bowl might get a child smacked in the U.S. It’s okay to slurp Asian noodles, but spaghetti is another matter, and the image of an old Japanese man loudly vacuuming his pasta off the plate is very unsophisticated.
When eating noodles, it’s okay to slurp.