On my weekly trip to Sunrise Japanese supermarket in East Village, I found a new blend of tea: Suntory's Oolong Tea Oriental Blend. Yes, oriental blend. If I recall my post-colonialism studies days in college, since Edward Said's Orientalism, the word "oriental" is considered as an expression of prejudice. However, not so in Japan. There is a popular comedy duo called "Oriental Radio," and Tokyo Disney Land is run by "Oriental Land Group." In fact I had no idea that this was taboo until one day in high school in Florida when I was actually called Oriental. "Wow, I can't believe you let him call you that," I would hear. And I was called that word many times in a small town in Florida by soda drinkers.
After moving to NYC 10 years ago, I was called Oriental just once, and I recall the entire table freezing up in prolonged awkward silence. Now I look at this very smooth, refreshing tasting Suntory Oolong Tea Oriental Blend, this to me tastes like sweet irony.