We keep hearing about a collapse in tourist numbers, an economic slowdown and falling rents. But no-one seems to have told the commercial landlords in my neighbourhood, where the closure of tacky bars and restaurants – and the opening of even nastier ones – continues.
The latest outlet to go is a place called Yorkshire Pudding. It offered British food and televised sports, a combination that sounds like an especially loathsome circle of Hell, but the overweight-white-males-with-shaved-heads demographic seemed to like it. To give an idea of what worse could take its place: just a couple of streets away, a Hooters is going to open.
Although the Soho restaurant investors go to cynical/desperate lengths in devising new themes and concepts with a chance of surviving in this ultra-high-rent environment, you can at least laugh. The Thai tapas with a Scandinavian twist, artisanal hamburgers and Peruvian-ceviche-with-kimchi ideas border on self-parody. Hooters, however, is simply not funny, just gross.
The South China Morning Post goes into almost-investigative and crusading mode in its nicely unsympathetic story on this newest and, surely, ultimate excrescence on Central’s dining scene. Even in 1980s US, the waitresses-with-big-boobs thing was infantile. Now, well into the 21st Century, it turns up in the trashy Lan Kwai Fong extension that is upper Wyndham Street – with a 10-year-lease, somehow.
The SCMP reports that a headhunting company with a female client base is fleeing the premises upstairs because, understandably, it can’t bear to have ‘above Hooters’ as its location. And we learn that these low-lifes are even planning to blight poor old Phnom Penh with a branch. To emphasize the sordid/sleaze/icky angle, the paper also extracts a quote from the investor behind Hooters denying that his Thai branch employs ladyboys.
Some demented malevolence opened a Krispy Kreme up the hill a few years ago. When it started offering free samples of the vile donuts to schoolkids, some angry vigilante feng-shui experts went round and put a spell on it. It closed soon after. Rare but glorious proof that HL Mencken was wrong when he said that no-one ever lost money by underestimating the public’s taste. I foresee Hooters cursed and collapsing in a similar fashion.
Meanwhile, at the other end of the wholesomeness scale, there’s a place called Nood, on Peel Street…
Don’t worry – you’re not supposed to drink it. This is their special extra-strength colonic-irrigation solvent. But why is only the cucumber ‘organic’? And why Pink H. Salt, rather than the regular white no-middle-initial stuff? (Actually, if you dropped the spinach/broccoli and added onion and tomato, you’ve got a great tabbouleh recipe.)
And on the Escalator that caused all this horrifying gentrification, a man wearing those foot-less tights beneath shorts, like women do…
Not being judgmental – just bemused at the sartorial symbolism or functionality, if any. (I’m guessing horrible scars on legs.)
Hooters will end up with a dozen cheerful, busty Filipinas, just like every other gwai-lo pub in LKF, Soho and Wanchai. Well, that’s quite a novelty then.
The Nood thing is run by Al Semen’s daughter, I think. The one who looks like Chelsea Clinton, but less pretty.
These are running tights by the company Under Armor. Excellent for keeping muscles warm in sub zero environments, such as mid-winter fell runs, or HK shopping malls.
By coincidence, I saw a man wearing tights yesterday for the first time, and didn’t know what to make of it. It was a sturdy, middle-aged Chinese man, heavily loaded with fishing equipment, as if he took the hobby very seriously. The tights were white.
Zika wear? but fatal to leave the ankles exposed.
If its so fuvking gross DON’T go you self opinionated prick.
It looks like one of those tattooed, obese, bald-headed..errr…things from the Yorkshire Pudding just woke up -just in time for happy hour- to give us a piece of its mind.
Rick … chillax man, Helmsman Hemlock is one of the last bastions of anti-philistinism in these ‘ere parts (no reference to Palestine), fighting the good fight… against incredible, overwhelming forces of cartelistic Hong Kong-stylee ‘capitalism’.
I suspect Rick may be Hooters’ version of Information Coordinator extraordinaire, Andrew Fung Wai-kwong…
Brexit is much ado about nothing, but a Hooters eight blocks from Firehouse is the End of Civilization…