Ever since an enterprising restaurateur realized that they had too much bland cookie dough and vague advice and not enough money, fortune cookies have accompanied checks at restaurants around the world. It’s strange, then, that they attract little attention, with most people choosing restaurants based on things like their “ambiance,” “price” or “quality of food.” With that in mind, I’ve decided to review four of the most accessible Asian restaurants around TU with regards to the accuracy of the fortunes inside their cookies.
“Rudeness is merely the expression of fear.”
Yokozuna is the kind of place that a think piece from five years ago would have made fun of. It has exposed brick, black and white photos of old-timey sumo wrestlers, and a blackboard with punny daily specials posted on it. The food is good, but relatively pricey.
The fortune, on the other hand, was garbage. I expect to be told how to live my life, but instead, I just get some advice that gives me a better perspective on how other people feel? Personally, I only get rude when I’m angry or dealing with anxiety, so this fortune cookie has been disproven with a sample size of one person. I’ve also heard that some Yokozuna fortunes are coupons for free food or shots, so I was frustrated that getting drunk for free wasn’t in my future. Disappointing.
New Hong Kong
“Calamity and prosperity are the touchstone of integrity.”
When I walked into New Hong Kong, my first thought was that I had stepped into a Bruce Lee movie, thanks to the wood panelling, 70s decor and the sense that a gang of neighborhood toughs might walk in and start charging protection fees. It’s only a few blocks off campus, it serves good food with generous portions, and it’s the cheapest restaurant I’ve ever been to, in the best way. The only caveat is that they only take cash, though, so come prepared.
I went to New Hong Kong when I definitely should have been studying for a test, so my fortune was actually very apt. Whether I passed or failed, I would still grow as a person, and learn integrity, which is allegedly more important than anything I can learn in a classroom. The only reason I’m not giving this a 5/5 is because I would have really preferred a fortune that told me to prepare for more questions on conceptual models, which would have actually been helpful.
“A great adventure is just around the corner.”
I went to the Star Ginger on campus, so, in the words of the great T.I., you know what it is. One thing to note is that, though the rice bowls are aggressively mediocre, their pho is actually pretty decent. If you haven’t tried it, then you’re missing out.
This fortune is vague, as befits a cookie fortune. Unfortunately, it’s so vague that I can’t use it to guide all of my life decisions, which is what I really want from my cookies. There’s also the question of whose definition of “great adventure” it’s using, because I consider staying in to read more a “grand adventure.” Also, if you’re wondering whether it was talking about a literal corner, I checked, and there were no adventures near where I opened the cookie. This fortune was optimistic, but unusable.
Guang Zhou Dim Sum
“Listen attentively. You will come out ahead in the coming week.”
I was excited to go to Guang Zhou Dim Sum, because I’ve never had Dim Sum, but it turns out that they only serve it from 11-3 on weekends, operating as a standard Chinese restaurant the rest of the time. The restaurant is located in a refurbished McDonald’s, which you can tell because of the style of the building, the remaining drive-through windows and the fact that the doors still say “McDonald’s,” despite Guang Zhou having been in that location for at least five years. In any case, the food was hit-or-miss, with great dumplings but soapy tofu, and it was more expensive than I’d prefer.
The fortune, on the other hand, was something else. First of all, it actually told me to listen to it, which seems like a bold move for a cookie. It also gave me a very specific timeframe for how long it would take to come true, which would be strange, unless you take into account that this article will already be in print by the time the week is up.
All in all, this is the first time I’ve ever been outsmarted by a cookie. The cookie knew that I would have to judge it before the fortune’s timeline expired, and so wouldn’t be able to give a good evaluation. To make matters worse, I’m scared to say that the cookie was inaccurate, just in case it has some way to stop me from coming out ahead. While I can’t say that the fortunes at Guang Zhou Dim Sum are accurate, I do know that they’re always one step ahead of me, like a chessmaster or a dance teacher. You win this round, Guang Zhou.