Yesterday, our pal Angry Asian Man reported that Bloomingdale's at South Coast Plaza welcomed Lunar New Year with mannequins wearing--wait for it--rice paddy hats. But of course, the hats were removed shortly after, which implies that the absurdity was acknowledged soon enough.
Stay classy, OC!
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While the rest of the store's Chinese New Year decorations are respectful (red lanterns and dragons, after all, are used in traditional celebrations), putting rice paddy hats normally worn by poor Asian farmers onto expensive Marc Jacobs and John Varvatos ensembles ain't exactly kosher. According to CEO Tony Spring, Bloomingdale's is "honoring Chinese culture" with all of this, for which I say: of course--by taking money out of some Asian people's new red envelopes, right?
I get it, Bloomie's: there are lots of Asian people here with money to throw at you, so why not take advantage with cultural shout-outs? Next time though, start by typing in "Stereotypical Tropes to Avoid" into Google and then consult your Asian-American retail assistants (which, I've observed, are not lacking at your South Coast location). At this point, I'm sure they wouldn't mind.