Archives for June 2022

Bachan’s: A special sauce that’s generations in the making

  You’ve probably seen Bachan’s Japanese Barbecue Sauce on the shelves at your local supermarket, packaged in a familiar looking chef’s squeeze bottle and labeled with a cheery hachimaki-wearing octopus. For the uninitiated, Bachan’s Japanese Barbecue Sauce (Original flavor) has a savory-sweet flavor, full of umami. With notes of ginger, garlic and green onion, the […]

San Jose JA political icon remembered in hometown memorial

SAN JOSE, Calif. — Stuart Mineta recounted as a child becoming frustrated with his attempt to draw a model airplane, so he asked his father to draw it for him. As he often did, Norman Mineta took the time to focus his attention on the task at hand. Family and political leaders shared memories and […]

Japanese house and gardens vandalized in Philadelphia

The Shofuso Japanese House and Garden in Philadelphia was vandalized the evening of June 15, Rob Buscher, the Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia’s associate director of organizational culture, told the Nichi Bei Weekly. A mural by artist Hiroshi Senju that is valued at just under $2 million is among the items that were damaged. […]

Supervising ministers feel burden from shortage

Nationwide, more than 60 churches and temples affiliated with the Buddhist Churches of America serve thousands of adherents to the Jodo Shinshu sect of Buddhism, but with many of its clergy members at retirement age, the network of churches is encountering a shortage of ministers further exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic. “Even before the pandemic, […]

THE GREAT UNKNOWN AND THE UNKNOWN GREAT: Prewar attitudes toward queer sexuality in Japanese-language press

This is the 16th year that I have had the pleasure of presenting my annual queer history column. I want to start today’s installment by acknowledging the 2020 online J-Sei exhibit “Seen & Unseen: Queering Japanese American History Before 1945,” co-curated by Nichi Bei Weekly columnist Amy Sueyoshi and Stan Yogi. It was a landmark […]

Court says ban on same-sex marriage constitutional

TOKYO — A Japanese court ruled June 20 that the country’s ban on same-sex marriage does not violate the constitution, and rejected demands for compensation by three couples who said their right to free union and equality has been violated. The Osaka District Court ruling is the second decision on the issue, and disagrees with […]

FINDING YOUR NIKKEI ROOTS: Where was your family in 1950?

The 1950 U.S. Census was publicly released on April 1, 2022, 72 years after it was enumerated. The U.S. government began to count the population in 1790 and continued to do so every 10 years. Each decennial census asked slightly different questions and the data is invaluable for family historians. Enumerators were given specific instructions […]

THE GOCHISO GOURMET: Me so in love with everything soy

As we’re approaching that time of year when the Nichi Bei Foundation hosts the annual Northern California Soy & Tofu Festival — this year it’s an in-person event at the San Francisco Japantown Peace Plaza, July 2 from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. — it’s time to discuss all things soy. Well, over the past […]

THE HEART OF KANJI: Love is like rain from a cloud in the sky

愛 (Ai) means “love.” The top of this character is a person rowing a boat, the middle portion is a heart and the bottom portion is a footstep. All together, this symbolizes the feeling that a boat cannot go fast enough when someone is looking forward to meeting with their loved one. 空 (Sora) means […]

Detroit honors Vincent Chin, Asian American killed in 1982

DETROIT — Decades before Chinese immigrant Yao Pan Ma was attacked while collecting cans in New York and Thai American Vicha Ratanapakdee was fatally assaulted in San Francisco, Vincent Chin was beaten to death with a baseball bat in Detroit by two white men who never served jail time. Forty years later — and amid […]