NEWCASTLE lacks a Chinatown or little Italy (unless you count Beaumont Street), but we have the makings of a Tokyotown – in Carrington.
Yes – sleepy Carro. Bowlos, silos, domo arigato.
Carro acquired a taste for Japanese with the arrival of Cafe Inu, housed in a former warehouse on Denison Street and offering wares as wacky and tasty as a crocodile hotdog. They’ve applied for a liquor licence, and hope to add Japanese beers to the menu.
Head further across The Island towards the silos, turn left on Young Street and you might spot the soon-to-open Kitami Japanese grocery store.
Manager Nobu Aoki, who hails from Osaka, is quietly confident he’s found a market for goods like sushi, frozen edamame and assorted lunchboxes.
‘‘We would like to go into Japanese catering as well,’’ he told Topics.
‘‘But first, it will be only groceries.’’
There’s even talk of stocking ramen, a Japanese noodle soup and possibly the best thing ever. Topics can’t handle this much good news.
It’s been suggested on Twitter that Carro be renamed ‘‘Carrojuku’’ and its female residents ‘‘Carrojuku Girls’’. Anyone for Carraoke?
INTERESTING business this week with the owner of the LA Clippers.
If you missed it, the basketball team’s billionaire owner Donald Sterling told a female friend not to associate with ‘‘black people’’, or bring them to Clippers games, in a secretly recorded rant.
You’re finished, mate, decided National Basketball Association boss Adam Silver. He banned Sterling for life, fined him $US2.5million and vowed to do ‘‘everything in my power’’ to force him to sell the team. Sterling has owned the Clippers since 1981.
Note that Sterling didn’t break any laws. They’re big on free speech in the States. Remember, this is the country where the Ku Klux Klan can have a pay-TV channel.
No. The NBA simply decided that here was an owner who was undesirable. Whose behaviour was odious. Who, it turned out, had acted in ways the public wasn’t willing to cop.
Topics wonders if the bosses of other sports – in other countries, with other private owners – are watching.
THIS week Topics got to hear Vince Gilligan, creator of Breaking Bad, talk about the show. Here’s a couple of things we didn’t know.
1. Saul Goodman, the lawyer and fan favourite played by Bob Odenkirk, doesn’t appear until mid-season two.
Gilligan was a fan of Odenkirk’s sketch comedy work and wanted to cast him. But Odenkirk hadn’t heard of Breaking Bad. After reading a script, he was convinced his character would be killed off within a season.
2. Aaron Paul, who plays Jesse Pinkman, stuffed up his lines in his audition. He brought it up years later with the show’s creator, who didn’t remember.
‘‘All I remember is that as soon as he walked in the room, I thought ‘this is the guy’,’’ recalled Gilligan.
3. Things nearly got even darker. In one idea that never made it to the show, Jesse took revenge on Walter (Bryan Cranston) by getting Walter Junior (RJ Mitte) hooked on meth.
‘‘When Jesse was very much on the out with Walt, we wanted him to get revenge by seeking Walter Junior and getting him hooked on meth,’’ Gilligan said.
WE’LL leave you with this heart-warming shot of farmer Ben Crow, and a mate. Both want you to check out Tocal Field Days this weekend.
Email Tim on firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet @TimConnell or phone 4979 5944