you should eat something before coming over

Charcuter 1 Tao1

Cha siu fan 叉燒飯 is a Cantonese boxed meal consisting of sliced barbeque pork, boiled greens, and a fried egg over steamed white rice. Cha siu fan is both famously inexpensive and readily available in the streets of Hong Kong and North American Cantones enclaves, making the meal popular among the urban working class. The meal can be ordered in restaurants but is more commonly purchased at siu mei 燒味 establishments, barbeque counters that sell a variety of roasted meats for takeaway. In Vancouver’s Chinatown, barbeque counters have historically been targeted for closure by city health inspectors. Today, the mass displacement of grocery stores and siu mei establishments in the neighbourhood due to rising rents has severely limited the subsistence retail for Chinatown’s remaining working class Chinese residents, mst of whom are seniors living in isolation.

Vincent Tao is the librarian at Pollyanna Library, where he is responsible for the collection and associated programs. His independent research and organizing work concerns urban displacement and the right to the city. Prior to moving to Vancouver, he studied at McGill University in Montreal where he was a outreach coordinator for a worker-run community kitchen.

Editors Note:

We participate in a social economy where we are assigned many or all of the following roles: of assembling, arranging, presenting, hosting, being hosted, socializing, and at the end of the night, maybe we’re a little peckish, a little traumatized, possibly imbued with opinion. 1. The trouble with introductions is the consequence of expectation and accidental making of promises. Treat this not as an introduction, but as a late night gathering, a weathered, but ebullient, aftermath of some sort. 2. Some sentiments thrown around after galvanizing at the closest apartment. We have assembled writing for casual consumption and social stimulation. Our purpose is not to sate or enlighten, if that is the meaning of your presence, you should eat something before coming over. A guiding principle of this modest publication comes from a cursory definition of our namesake: The art of preparing various meats...in order to present them in the most diverse ways. The three texts assembled here, in their own method, on a scale of subtle to overt polemics, all thoroughly questioned the bureaucratic, professional and dogmatic hurdles we are beholden to as practitioners of art, poetry, and criticism. Perhaps in the guise of complaint or confusion at the status quo, these texts share instances of the battles we chose (an expression often meaning those we chose not to choose), when we show our teeth, and where we find solace from the decorum of dismissal. We have asked ourselves and our contributors to leash our professional performances at the door, to see if beyond that, there is any exhausted and messily expressed truth left to share around a cutting board or a bowl of chips.

Your editors,

Bopha Chhay
Steffanie Ling

Colophon:

Editors: Bopha Chhay and Steffanie Ling
Authors: Jacquelyn Ross, Jacobo Zambrano, and Eli Zibin
Inside Cover: Vincent Tao
Design: Victoria Lum
Publisher: Charcuterie, Vancouver, British Columbia
Printed by: Maranda Digital
Cover printed by: Or Gallery
Edition of 150
Typefaces: SimSun, Larish Neue

SimSun
Designed by Microsoft Windows to display Chinese characters associated with the Song Dynasty when a distinctive printed style of script was developed.

Larish Neue Designed by Radim Pesko

Charcuterie strives to provide a forum for experimental writing and informed polemics without pedantry. It assembles a polyphony of inquiry and documents the messy landscape of opinion and critique that unravels in close proximity to where we work, live and make art in Vancouver.

Ⓒ 2017 All rights reserved.

ISSN 2371-4786

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