Friday, March 8, 2013

Wylog Fong Meets Cartoonist Fay King

The 1920 United States Federal Census recorded “Wy Lok Fong” in Portland, Oregon, at 67 1/2 North Fourth Street, where he lived with his father, “Jong Fong”, the head of the household. Also residing there was Wylog’s brother, “Wy Heo”, and his sister, “Emilie Lock”, her husband “Wy See Lock”, and their seven children.

Wylog Fong took cartoonist Fay King to a Portland, Oregon, Chinatown restaurant. In the article, his name was spelled “Wylong”.

Syracuse Evening Telegram
(New York)
December 16, 1922
Fay King Says Chop Sticks Should Have Hooks on Ends

Some Job for Amateur to Get Enough to Eat
If He Has to Depend on Chinese Golf Clubs—
Pop Corn Provides Good Practice at Start.

I don’t mind telling the world I’m a Babe Ruth with the chop sticks!

Wylong Fong, a clever young Chinese artist, took me to China Town to see a restaurant he had decorated and after admiring his paintings, I suggested it would be an opportune time for me to try my hand at chop sticks.

If you have ever dug around in a tall fruit lemonade and tried to hoist the cherries up with a coupla soda straws you have an idea of what eatin’ with chop sticks is. It ain’t no cinch.

You hold both of ’em in one hand, and it’s about as easy as if you held your shiftin’ gears and the brake with one mitt and tried with the other to change from high into low with three fingers and stop your car with the other two.

Some Swift Progress.

If it hadn’t been that I once had a friend who played drums and showed me how to rat-tat-tat with the drum sticks, and a Spanish dancer out in San Francisco showed me how to click the castanets, I don’t think I would have got out as well as I did. I made some pretty bad shots at first, but pretty soon I did better.

Chop sticks are built like wooden knittin’ needles, and you ain’t ever supposed to drop “stitches.” If they were built like crochet needles, with a hook on the end, it would be easy. Then you could fish up your food, but this day you have to grab it like tweezers.

When I got pretty good with ’em, the jolly old Chinese proprietor of the place turned cheer leader on the side lines, and he says:

“You doing fine, Miss Fay King!”

And, he gimme the chop sticks for a present.

Up to now the main trouble with the chop sticks was the chow. I ain’t very keen for Chinese dishes, being such a plain eater. So when I got home I had to figure out something that I could eat with chop sticks. I hit on pop corn. It was something I liked! I tackled a big panful, and it was great practice.

I can now prance up to the plate and bat five hundred!

Tip to Golfers.

Seems to me, country clubs ought to go in for chop sticks instead of silverware. They make great table golf. The members could tee their eats, every mouthful would be a hazard, and there’d be as much fun puttin’ at the table as on the green.

Young Fong tells me that some chop sticks cost as much as a hundred and fifty dollars, if they are real nifty. I’m still workin’ with a pair of woodens, and thinking what it would mean to a golf hound to have his sticks with him all the time. He could eat with a pair of cleeks, or his mid irons, swell brasales, or niblicks.

An’ if you had a hole pinched through your chop sticks you could keep your cigarette on one and not burn holes in the tablecloth while you’re eatin’.

Might make a combination chop stick and fountain pen, too.

Chop sticks oughta be a great cure for indigestion, cause you’ll never get gout from what you haul up with those things!

It’s too much like work to over eat!

(click image to enlarge)

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