One of my daughter’s friends was in Singapore for a month this summer on a study abroad scholarship. This is one of the pictures she took while there. It’s a food tray at a fast food place in Singapore.
First of all, if I am ever in Singapore and feel a compelling need to order a hot dog– well, I hope someone will go ahead and put me out of my misery. That is Just Wrong. But if, for some reason, you ever find yourself in Singapore and are unavoidably faced with having to eat a hot dog, be aware that they have discovered there are Rules.
Dos and Don’ts: Everyday guidance for eating America‘s sacred food
- Do. . . eat hotdogs on buns with your hands. Utensils should not touch hotdogs on buns.
- Don’t. . . use a cloth napkin to wipe your mouth when eating a hotdog. Paper is always preferable.
- Don’t. . . leave bits of bun on your plate. Eat it all. Fresh herbs on the same plate with hotdogs are a major “Don’t. . .” Mustard, relish, onions, cheese and chili are acceptable.
- Don’t. . . take more than five bites to finish a hotdog. For foot-long wiener, seven bites are acceptable.
- Do. . . Condiments remaining on the fingers after eating a hotdog should be licked away, not washed.
- Don’t. . . use ketchup on your hotdog after the age of 18.
- Don’t. . . think there is a wrong time to serve hotdogs.
Who knew? And way down at the bottom (I had to enlarge it to see this) it says: Source: National Hot Dog & Sausage Council, USA. So I did an internet search and, yes, there is such a thing and they have a website. They do indeed have these guidelines listed there, among others.
[Please note that in Spain, it is considered an appalling breach of etiquette to lick one’s fingers. No matter what food is being consumed.]
It might seem unimaginable, what with this surfeit of information, but I am left with two unanswered questions: Does the National Hot Dog & Sausage Council realize the effect they’re having on international relations? And what kind of fresh herbs, exactly, might one be tempted to serve with a hot dog?
Okay, three questions: Hot dogs are sacred?