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November 13, 2014 - Image 8

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The Michigan Daily, 2014-11-13

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2B - Thursday, November 13, 2014

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com A

2B -Thusda, Noembr13 201 Th Mihiga Daly micigadaiyco

Finally, a series of
very fortunate events

CHEFS ANN ARBOR

By GRACE PROSNIEWSKI
Daily Literary Columnist
Tamagotchis. SkiFree. Almost
every single Disney Channel
Original Movie. Unfortunately,
some beloved media from child-
hood doesn't hold up to the
harsh light of the present day.
However, I still respect and
look fondly upon many of my
favorite books from childhood.
These works laid the founda-
tion for my love of reading that
continues to this day, and helped
steer me away from the vampire-
infested abyss that was young
adult literature at the time.
I had a veritable holy trin-
ity of children's fantasy series,
which included J.K. Rowling's
Harry Potter, Eoin Colfer's
Artemis Fowl and Daniel Han-
dler's, alk.a. Lemony Snicket's
A Series of Unfortunate Events.
I even received a signed copy of
the final book from "Snicket"
reading, "with admiration and
dread." Needless to say, I'm still
fangirling over it.
So I was of course excited
and highly intrigued when news
broke last week that Netflix
would be adaptingA Series of
Unfortunate Events into an origi-
nal series, with Handler serv-
ing as executive producer. This
isn't the first time the series has
jumped mediums. The first three
books were combined into the
2004 film, which though criti-
cally successful, featuring such
stars as Meryl Streep, Jude Law
and Jim Carrey, failed to inspire
future movies.
Handler's unique blend of
dark humor with accessibility
for children is a testament to
his abilities. One of the greatest
aspects of the series is its highly
stylistic, seemingly timeless

world, which lends a great deal
of license and unpredictability
to the plot. It's in this ominous
and yet strangely enjoyable set-
ting that the Baudelaire orphans'
narrative unfolds, in what may
be best described as a blend of
suburban gothic and absurdist
fiction. It's a wonderful, if not
sometimes depressing, world for
a reader to get lost in.
But my appreciation for the
series is tempered by a fair
amount of frustration and disap-
pointment over the last install-
ment. After reading the 13th and
final book, I was left to puzzle
out a plethora of unanswered
questions, ambiguous character
fates and important plot lines
that seemed to go nowhere.
What's particularly madden-
ing is the fact that I do believe
Handler had the answers; he
just didn't give them out. The
companion books to the series
alone prove that he has awell-
thought out and complex world
of characters and backstories at
his disposal.
So is there a greater meaning
to his omissions? Perhaps. Do I
care about that? No way. Give me
closure or give me death.
It's because of these loose
ends that I'm particularly excit-
ed about a potential television
series, especially with Handler
as an executive producer. In
adapting and reworking the
series for television, perhaps
he'll shed more light, advertently
or not, on some of the unan-
swered questions that have both-
ered me and other readers since
the release of the final book.
I don't have any nostalgia-
fueled misgivings abouta
potential series. Plenty of tele-
vision shows have proven that
they can hold up to, and even in

some ways, improve upon, the
original source material. Game
of Thrones, Outlander, Justified,
Boardwalk Empire, Friday Night
Lights, the list of popular and
critically acclaimed shows based
on books stretches on and on.
And there's no reason to think
that this trend will be changing
anytime soon. With an increas-
ingly volatile television land-
scape, networks will continue
to gravitate toward works with
established fan bases.
Though I suspect there
will always be talk among the
snootiest - and insufferable - of
bibliophiles on the possible phi-
listine nature of turning books
into television shows, I for one,
see no cause for alarm. While
some elements are no doubt lost
in translation, the transforma-
tion from one media form to
another often results in a differ-
ent understanding of and deeper
appreciation for, the original
work. Also, we should not under-
sell the ability of media forms
like television to bringnew
readers to the literary source
material. There are benefits for
creators in both mediums when
television looks to literature for
inspiration.
And maybe one day this
literary influence will result
in a television series in which
Edgar Allan Poe and Nathaniel
Hawthorne, in an odd couple/
bromance vein, travel around
solving mysteries, some super-
natural in kind, all the while
throwing massive shade at tran-
scendentalists. We can only hope
that day comes sooner rather
than later.
Prosniewski is watching
'Smart House.' To join, e-mail
gprosniewski@umich.edu.

2
i
I

Takashi Yagihashi won the "Best Chef in the Midwest" award in 2003, given by the James Beard Foundation.

Slurping Turtle chef
brings authentic
Japanese to A2
By GRACE HAMILTON
Daily Arts Writer
Takashi Yagihashi grew up in
Mito, Japan, about 45 minutes
outside of Tokyo, playing
baseball, watching American
movies, reading popular novels
and immersing himself in his
schoolwork. He imagined the
Hollywood-built wonders of
American life in his future,
although none of these dreams
included a kitchen.
However, with high school
came the pressure of earning
some pocket money, and so
Takashi took the dirty jobs of
dishwasher and kitchen helper at
a local restaurant.
"I never wanted to be a chef
when I was a kid, but I realized
once I started doing things in a
kitchen, I was pretty good at it,"
Takashi said.
After receiving adegree in,
interior design from the Tokyo
Design School, he was offered
a job to work in Chicago with
his former employer. Working
his way up through the kitchen
hierarchy, Takashi opened his
own first Chicago restaurant,
Tribute, in 1993, followed by
Takashi in 2007 and Slurping
Turtle in 2011. Slurping Turtle
proved to be an instant success,
and in April 2014 Takashi opened
a second branch in Ann Arbor, on
East Liberty.
Slurping Turtle is inspired by

Japanese street-food and home
cooking, providing a unique and
varied menu, pleasing to anyr
patron's taste buds.
"Iloved ramen, Iloved noodles.
So that's one of the reasons we
opened Slurping Turtle. When
I was young, I ate noodles every
day. One day ramen, one day
udon, one day soba," he said.
"It's authentic Japanese, but
with a contemporary, modern
twist. It has a unique spice. It's a
different take on usual Japanese
food and traditional noodles,"
Takashi said of Slurping Turtle's
menu.
Indeed, the range of dishes
on the menu is impressive: A
selection of ramen meals for
lunch, ceviche with octopus,
scallops, shrimp, squid and yuzu
dressing or yellowtail tacos with
truffle soy and taro root shell
as tapas. A list of sushi rolls is
available, listed above the sides,
which include Kani cream
croquettes. For dessert, try a
raspberry wasabi macaron or a
slice of cheesecake.
The restaurant's menu will
change with every season. Each
of Takashi's establishments has
a different executive chef who
oversees these changes, working
closely with Takashi as well.
"We try to use fresh
ingredients, which is especially
easy in the summer, when there
are lots of local markets. As
winter comes, a lot of things are
coming from California across
the country, but we do the best
we can," Takashi says of ensuring
the quality of ingredients.
Fresh noodles are rolled and
made daily in the basement of

Slurping Turtle, where the action
happens. When I asked about his
career highlights, or proudest
moments, Takashi had too many
to name. What started as an
afterschool job has proved to be
as smooth sailing and marvelous
as the Hollywood stories the
future chef was once so intrigued
by.
In 2003, he received the "Best
Chef in the Midwest" award from
the James Beard Foundation. In
fact, just two hours before our
interview, Takashi received his
fifth Michelin star, a coveted
award given by the French
company, Michelin, for more
than one hundred years.
"I know that college students
have a lot of study to do and not
much time, you need cooking
to be easy. But when you have a
day off, instead of going for fast
food, find a local market. Get
some fresh ingredients and make
a simple salad," Takashi says to
college students struggling with
the challenge of eating well.
"Ithas been amazing," Takashi
says of his career, walkingup the
stairs of, his Chicago Slurping
Turtle in order to better hear me
on our telephone call.
His love and dedication to his
work, which he treats as an art,
shines through in his words, and
evidently, in his food.
This is a man you can count on
totake the extrastep: "If you stop
by the restaurant, please be sure
to give me a call on this number
and I'll make sure to give you
something extra. We'd love to
have you."
Chances are, they would love
to have you too.

WE'VE SEEN YOU
BOOKWORMS OUT THERE.
SO CRAWL ON OVER
TO DAILY ARTS AND WRITE A BOOK
REVIEW
E-MAIL AKSE@UMICH.EDU FOR AN APPLICATION

Moment of Opportunity:
Reducing Health Disparities
and Advancing Health Equity

TV TRAILER REVIEW

J. Nadine Gracia, M.D., M.S.C.E.
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Minority Health
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

"Girls"has officially set the
date (Jan.11, 9p.m.)givingus just
over two months to obsess over
the recently
released trailer
for season
four. Hannah 'GirIs'
is back inthe
Midwest at Returns
the presti- Jan.11
gious Iowa
City Writer's
Workshop,
and strug-
gling to maintain any fictive
distance ("The main character is
agirl with a lot of tattoos named
Anna"), but she's always had
boundary issues so what would
we expect?And where Hannah
goes, Eli follows in well-tailored
shorts, includingto what looks
like a frat version of season two's
"I Love It" night out, except with
paint wrestling instead of iPad
DJ's (this is Iowa).
Shoshannahas a cute new bob
(actually I counted atleast five

1

Reservations required: http://chear.org/meister-lecture
Sponsored by
The Child Health Evaluation and Research (CHEAR) Unit, a collaboration of the Schools of Business,
Dentistry, Information, Law, Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Public Health, Public Policy and Social Work

in the trailer, clearly "Girls"is
gettingwiththe Lobtrend post-
mortem) but post-grad corporate
life is cramping her style. This
is ridiculous because if there is a
character made forthe peplum-
friendly world of office fashion
and all things jewel-toned, it's
her (love ya, Shosh).
Adamis taking the reverse
Charlie trajectory and becoming
less attractive in relationto his
increasing douchiness and also
doing some much needed soul
searching.
The most importantaya-

huascalifestyle muse/trust fund
boheme/stick-and-pokehobbyist
of ourtime isthe same, by which
I mean Jessa's absent from most
of the trailer,notably showing
up to slap Hannah while wear-
ing another cool lingerie romper
thing that Free People will prob-
ably sell now.
Marnie is Marnie, blah, and
still doing the indie-folkthing,
but she does givethe bestline of
the trailer ("Just so you know this
is not one of your mostconvinc-
ing fake showers").
- CATHERINE SULPIZIO

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