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Meaning of a cartoon

Achim Steigert

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I found this cartoon, but I can't figure out the meaning. It seems to have to do with the jingasa being used as a cooking pot, I think...
 

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Toritoribe

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Yes, he says you can eat dried boiled rice as it is, or boil it in jingasa using it as a cooking pan. It's best if you have zuiki (taro stem).
 
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Yes, he says you can eat dried boiled rice as it is, or boil it in jingasa using it as a cooking pan. It's best if you have zuiki (taro stem).
Is ズイキ meant to be a pun? I noticed it has other meanings that could be a pun here.

Otherwise I just don't get it. Taken at face value it just seems stupid .. A jingasa would burn up if you used it as a pan and taro stem seems like a pretty terrible addition umeboshi and dried rice. (Granted I've only ever had taro root, not taro stem, so maybe i don't know what I'm missing... )

I feel like there must be some pun or something else at play to make this actually humorous rather than just stupid... ?
 

Toritoribe

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taro stem seems like a pretty terrible addition
芋茎 - Wikipedia

As for jingasa's use as a pan, it described in a book 雑兵物語 written in Edo Period. However, a researcher tried it and found that the lacquer of jingasa (urushi) was dissolved in the water and couldn't eat it. Actually, it seems ashigaru usually brought a pan and cooked using it.
 
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芋茎 - Wikipedia

As for jingasa's use as a pan, it described in a book 雑兵物語 written in Edo Period. However, a researcher tried it and found that the lacquer of jingasa (urushi) was dissolved in the water and couldn't eat it. Actually, it seems ashigaru usually brought a pan and cooked using it.
Ahh... interesting. Up until now, I thought taro's only use was as a rather flavorless starchy root mostly good for thickening asian stews and sauces. Maybe can find some of this 芋茎 in a local market and see, though it rather sounds like it's pretty flavorless too and you need to add a lot to make it edible...

As for the ashigaru cooking in pans rather than in their jingasa, I'm not surprised. I didn't realized that it was a story told about them though, I guess that makes some kind of sense then.

So it's not meant to be particularly humorous at least not in a joking way, just kind of a caricature of a historical character?
 

Mike Cash

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it rather sounds like it's pretty flavorless too and you need to add a lot to make it edible
In the days before modern supply lines soldiers probably ate a whole lot of things without being terribly choosy about how they got their nourishment.

The use of helmets as cookpots, buckets, wash basins, etc no doubt goes back to the very first ones devised. On a slight tangent, I recently learned the story of Wheeler Lipes. It is a splendid example of ingenuity and the ability to repurpose the materials at hand to meet an emergency situation. Makes Apollo 13 look mundane in comparison. (More detail)
 
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In the days before modern supply lines soldiers probably ate a whole lot of things without being terribly choosy about how they got their nourishment.

The use of helmets as cookpots, buckets, wash basins, etc no doubt goes back to the very first ones devised. On a slight tangent, I recently learned the story of Wheeler Lipes. It is a splendid example of ingenuity and the ability to repurpose the materials at hand to meet an emergency situation. Makes Apollo 13 look mundane in comparison. (More detail)
Using a metal helmet as a pot I'm sure happened many times in many cultures... it's using laquered straw (or is it laquered wood? Either way...) as a cooking pot that struck me as implausible, and I'm not surprised that trying to replicate it showed that it didn't work. I guess if the term 陣笠 includes hats made of metal it could be a pot in that case, but you just can't use laquered plant material of any kind over an open fire and expect any good result.

But about the 芋茎、 the page Toritoribeさん linked describes it as a food point blank, not as an item historically used as food. The description seems to me to say that it has a 'thin' flavor and that people currently eat it stewed with mustard, ginger, and soy sauce (although I didn't spend a lot of time with the page and it's full of unfamiliar terms so maybe I misread). There are plenty of Asian markets in Massachusetts so I should be able to get a hold of it if it's actually a contemporary food... whether it's worth getting a hold of is another question!

PS: The Wheeler Lipes story is pretty awesome in it's outline. I'll try to remember to look up the details later on.
 

Mike Cash

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you just can't use laquered plant material of any kind over an open fire and expect any good result.
I suppose the key with any material is going to be the same as with the paper cup placed directly on a fire example (which I have done myself)....it will depend entirely on the ability of the material to conduct heat to the water fast enough for the boiling water (which doesn't get over 100 degrees) to serve to cool the material. And for the material not to ignite at under 100 degrees, of course.

I always thought those guys way back then in a pinch cooked their rice in sections of bamboo. (Knock a small hole in the cross-section membrane, insert rice and water, plug hole, place in fire, and wait).
 

Toritoribe

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I moved our posts.

Using a metal helmet as a pot I'm sure happened many times in many cultures... it's using laquered straw (or is it laquered wood? Either way...) as a cooking pot that struck me as implausible, and I'm not surprised that trying to replicate it showed that it didn't work. I guess if the term 陣笠 includes hats made of metal it could be a pot in that case, but you just can't use laquered plant material of any kind over an open fire and expect any good result.
The researcher tried it with a steel jingasa.

The description seems to me to say that it has a 'thin' flavor and that people currently eat it stewed with mustard, ginger, and soy sauce
Zuiki was already seasoned.
芋がら縄 - Wikipedia
 
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