Black Buddha Bless

Whats the good news?
Its that time of the month again, which is the end of one leading into the beginning of the next, so I felt it best to continue in the tradition of ending on a positive note.

This is actually a test of my story telling abilities, and the one that I will share today is an actual true life story from my own archive of borderline paranormal personal experiences, so on with the show.

In the early part of the decade, I was employed with a technology company that was owned and operated by individuals of Taiwanese decent. Over the years, I was fortunate enough to become acquainted with the heads of the company, and was taken under their wing to learn about certain elements of life and business from a Far East Asian perspective through direct experience and contact.

The full proceedings of all the events would require a full book volume, so we will save that for a later date, and keep this entry brief, to the point, and on task.

After years of acquaintance, I had the opportunity to visit a restaurant in the Chinatown section of Los Angeles. I have visited the area many times prior, yet on this occasion, it just so happened that I needed to catch a train at Union Station in Los Angeles, and the head of the company had some business to tend to in the area, so he decided to bless me by giving me a lift.

Before we got to the train station, we circled into Chinatown to check on a few things, and wound up at a traditional Chinese restaurant. Of course, I already knew about the fact that what most consider to be Chinese food in America, is actually food that people of Chinese descent market and sell as Chinese food, but is really American Style food sold to Americans under the moniker of being Chinese, with popular dishes such as Orange Chicken and Stir Fried Rice with a fortune cookie as a desert treat.

I mentioned this piece of trivia to the humor of the person that I was with, and was soon shown the more accurate version of Chinese food that people in China, and of Chinese descent traditionally consume without thought of what Americans may find enjoyable.

We entered the restaurant, and within a few minutes female server arrived at our table with a menu full of items on a cart that were ready to serve, all of them colorful and full of aromas that I was not familiar with.

The person who brought me there uttered a few harsh toned words in Chinese to the server, and she quickly proceeded to put a few items from the cart on his plate, then asked what I wanted, which at that time was nothing from the cart.

When I asked what the cause of the harsh tone was, I soon learned that my American way of thinking had misled me, in the sense that what I considered harsh is what they consider normal and appropriate.

He then bagan to chow down on a dish using chop sticks that was juicy with a bright red and orange color, mentioning to me that I just did not know what I was missing, and since the only way to know is to ask, the answer showed that he was correct as he proceeded to tell me that what I was looking at on his plate was a good old fashioned helping of

Chinese Chicken Feet !

It really is a case of different strokes in my life, and he chuckled at my facial expression after learning what I was considering giving a try actually was.

We talked for a few more minutes as he finished his meal as I observed the scenery which showed that not only was I the only African American in the establishment, but the only non Chinese speaking person as well, yet no one seemed to really notice my presence as a stand out, as the food in the establishment was a more important matter of focus for the patrons.

There was still another 2.5 hours left before my train was scheduled to depart which left enough time tp pass by a nearby popular diner and cultural landmark in Los Angeles known as

Phillipe’s, which is actually as close to the definition of a traditional American dining establishment, as this establishment was traditional Chinese, yet Phillipe’s is the place where the French Dip Sandwich was actually invented.

Only in America is the most accurate way to describe it all, and it is shown through what I soon discovered, which may have been the more accurate explanation of why no one paid me any mind as a standout in a traditional Chinese restaurant that was in no way, shape, or form  inviting to tourist and hobbyists.

When exiting the building, I had the chance to observe something more closely that I saw when entering the place earlier that I thought was a figment of my imagination at first.

When I stopped and observed with curiosity, my escort asked what I was tripping on. As you enter into the establishment, there is a small square hole inside of the wall, with a small statue of a Black Buddha.

When I said I actually have seen this before, he responded by saying

“yeah, who hasnt” “?

I saw this particular chubby build Buddha statue in a lighter shade first on a record imprint as a child from Buddah Records which may explain why I for many years thought that Buddha was a term that was related to funk, disco, and “herbal remedies” before I became more enlightened, or so I thought.

Buddha Record Imprint

When I asked if the people in the restaurant and traditional Chinese culture believed that Buddha was black, I did recall that there are different aspects for Buddha,which represent different divine attributes, and my escort explained that this particular Black Buddha statue represents what their culture believes is The Buddha of Entertainment and Good Times, and is present in many establishments for dining and social events in Chinese culture to provide blessings.


To be continued.