The other night, I saw in my fine local night market* something that bothered me. Actually, I’d seen it before but not in action. I’m talking about “the claw.”
You know those plexiglass booths filled with stuffed toys? The coin-operated booths that have a claw drop down to grab a toy when you push a button? If you get lucky, the claw hoists up the toy and then drops it into an area you can retrieve it from.
Well, there were several of these booths. But they didn’t contain the usual assortment of Hello Kitty and her pals. They had water and live lobsters inside. It would be a drop of several feet onto a hard surface for any lobster that was successfully grabbed.
I realize that compared to lots of other things that happen to animals here, this is extremely minor. It’s the way that this is turned into an amusement that bothers me. But I always felt bad for the animals used to scare the pop singers on those variety shows of a few years ago. (I didn’t feel bad for the pop singers, though.)
I’m guessing this is at other night markets as well. How long has this been going on? Do you think it will disappear soon, or is this here to stay?
*I’m not being sarcastic. I really do love Banqiao’s night market. But I hate to think what the WTO is going to do to the price of maiyou ji at my favorite stand.