Dear Jennifer 8 Lee; what?

Do you know what TED is? It’s this thing where important but obscure people come and talk about subjects that are important and obscure so that other people can chime into random arguments and say, “actually, contrary to popular belief, the popular belief is wrong.”

Actually, to be perfectly honest, I really want to dislike TED, but I have a hard time finding real reasons to dislike them… except there’s this one video:

Jennifer 8 Lee is a journalist that is also interested in food and has written a book about it. Find it on Amazon or at your local book store’s bargain section (I’m not joking).

In her TED video, Jennifer refers to what she calls “Spontaneous Self-Organization” where Chinese restaurants all over the country have serve the dish General Tso’s Chicken without needing a some sort of franchise system.

At first, I was blown away… until I realized how stupid that analogy was. General Tso’s chicken never actually tastes any more alike in any two independently owned restaurants than burgers will at two independently owned burger joints unless they’re from franchises. Am I completely missing her point? Does she have a point? Is it just that the history of Chinese food is interesting? Great thx, I’m sure the people that like TED will love delving into the potential profundity of that.

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3 thoughts on “Dear Jennifer 8 Lee; what?

  1. Mike L says:

    Her middle name is the number 8? I’m curious about the video (provided it’s less than 5 minutes long) but the link is broked.

  2. alhwang says:

    Argh. That was a result of copying and pasting TED’s “paste this to embed” markup. You can probably just search Jennifer 8 Lee TED. I think it’s actually closer to 15 minutes though. And yeah her middle name is the number 8.

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