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Shameless Self-Promotion: Ramen Sandwich

posted Jun 25, 2016, 5:27 PM by Douglas Sun   [ updated Jun 25, 2016, 5:36 PM ]
For several years now, Kim and I have kicked around the idea of developing some of the ideas (mostly analog) that didn't quite fit into Bushi-go's main thrust and publishing them under a separate brand name. Now seems to be as good a time as any, and so we have consolidated all of our t-shirts on Merch by Amazon —this includes our "Beards and Generals" Civil War t-shirts and a shirt with the Martial Arts pip icon from Agiliste —under the seller name Ramen Sandwich.

To make it official, we have started selling another shirt, this one with the delightful Ramen Sandwich logo that illustrator Dax Schaffer designed for us. I cheerfully accepted the task of writing some catchy listing copy for it — and then prompt;y stumbled over the issue of what I could say about it. It's a shirt. With a picture of a ramen sandwich on it. We want people to buy it. Because we'll make money that way.

I didn't come back to the task until late at night, when I was exhausted and my conscious mind was packing up and ready to call it. But as sometimes happens, the frustration of trying to work when I'm miserably tired flipped a switch. A discursion starting with Magritte's influential painting The Treachery of Images started to flow and quickly became something that just might be crazy enough to work. Starting with Magritte felt like synchronicity; after all, he is usually lumped with the Surrealists, who believed that creativity could only begin once the censoring function of the conscious mind made like Eric Cartman and said, "Screw you guys, I'm going home!" And here I was, writing under the influence of being too tired to give a damn.

Alas, the Merch by Amazon listing form scotched my plan. The text box is small and difficult to manage, and it doesn't allow paragraph breaks, which are essential to cluing in your readers that you're using rambling insanity as a literary device and not actually rambling and insane. So what appears on the Amazon item page is a stripped-down version of what I had in mind.

Let the record show that this is the item description that I originally wanted:

"This is not a ramen sandwich. As the great artist Rene Magritte would say (if he was atill alive and cared enough to notice), "Ceci n'est pas un ramen sandwich." Or something like that. Because he was Belgian, after all.

"This is a representation of a ramen sandwich. It's our logo. The name of our shop is Ramen Sandwich. We think it makes sense — the part about using a depuction of a ramen sandwich as our logo and putting it on a shirt, that is. As to why we chose Ramen Sandwich as our name in the first place, like the Surrealists (with whom Magritte is usually grouped), we just reached into our bowler hats and went with whatever we pulled out, no questions asked.

"Unlike real ramen sandwiches, these shirts are guaranteed to stay fresh even if you don't refrigerate them. So buy one ‚ or, preferably, more than one. Show your love for Ramen Sandwich (and ramen sandwiches). Add some joy and whimsy to your lives. And make us some money. Oh yes — that last part is very important."

To get the joke just so, I checked Babelfish and Google Translator to get the French word for "sandwich." Rather to my surprise, both told that it is "sandwich." 

So let this mark the official christening of the Ramen Sandwich brand. I suppose we'll have to put up a Facebook page for it now. And do more of this social media stuff — a vortex into which I seem inexorably pulled in my grumpy middle age. More product announcements will follow soon; for now, I will just say that I look forward to adding to my Bibliography page after a too-long hiatus.

Ramen Sandwich logo 

Agiliste Martial Arts pip icon