“Their gazes had locked the entire time, Masao’s hand around the knife moving as if on its own, out of animal instinct and a surgeon’s habitual precision.” – Cyril Wong, Sushi
Like most foods, the first thing that will strike you will be its appearance. “Sushi” is a C4-broadsheet-styled publication, with a black rectangle centered on its spine on the left. In essence, the publication itself looks like onigiri.
And like sushi, the stories come bite-sized, flavourful, and in many varieties. From full-flavoured to subtle, the menu presented a kick for every kind of palate. Therefore, let us dive into the mix of fresh slices and fantasy sprinkles, shall we?
Alex Mitchell’s “kaiten” portrays sushi as a reminder of an old friend whom the narrator will never see again, much like the perfect maguro you will probably never experience again since that taste in Japan.
Ann Ang’s “sushi” and Gwyneth Teo’s “a slice of Singapore” merges the subtle impacts of sushi in the Singaporean kiasu culture – try one, try all, and try it on offer.
Moving over to the aesthetics, Jon Gresham’s “sushi girl” and Yong Shu Hoong’s “dionysus” question the lines which we may be willing to cross for the sake of a higher level of culinary art. Much like our boundaries we face in achieving our dreams.
Conversely, Yeow Kai Chai’s “landing in gale crater” speaks of sushi as the narrator’s comfort for dreams that could have been.
And Shazlynn May’s “the companion” and Ian Chung’s “kaiten-zushi” speak of the fish-and-vinegar-rice companionship we crave, with sushi almost always being the wasabi that holds the two together. Probably.
Despite all the wonderful dishes presented in this conveyor belt of stories, my personal favourite probably has to be Cyril Wong’s “sushi” – a subtle piece on the perfect combination and a glimpse behind the dark mind of the one who had his lover over for dinner.
Also, I’m not one to spoil things, but I’m convinced Cyril Wong has either heard of, or has watched Hannibal.
To get “Sushi”, click here.