This past weekend I attended the Taste of Cleveland. I had never gone to it before but I expected it to be along the same lines of the various rib burn-offs that seemingly every city/county host yearly. I went on Labor Day with the mindset that I would spend several hours fighting through crowds to try the plethora of foods from over 30 different restaurants. I got there and to my surprise there was not the huge crowd I was anticipating. Maybe it was just the time that I got there but it seemed dead. There was a large number of people but not the amount I had envisioned. It was as diverse a group as you could expect in the Cleveland area.
The hired help was as you would expect from our society. With the exclusion of the different restaurants, there were people hired to take tickets at the gate, take money to for customers to buy food tickets, and a maintenance crew. I realize there must have been others doing things I did not notice but these were the main non-food related jobs. Those working the front gate, ripping ticket stubs, were mostly African-American. The individuals taking the money for food tickets were almost 100% white, from what I saw while I was there. Lastly, the maintenance crew was mostly Hispanic or African-American. This shows that society still has some racist tendencies when it comes to hiring help. As much as everyone speaks up wants to believe that President Obama being elected shows us how far we’ve come, events like this are simple proof that little if anything has been accomplished in our society as a whole with this one victory.
Next, you come to the different food booths. I went for the mere fact that I could try several different foods and still spend the same amount of money that I would have normally spent at one restaurant for one meal. I was amazed to see that as diverse a crowd that was there, the majority of people didn’t try anything other than the food that would normally associated with their ethnicity. The Asians ate Asian food and African-Americans were mostly in line at the 2 or 3 stands selling ribs. It seemed that the only racial group willing to eat outside their “norm” was the white Americans. I don’t see why it was this way. The one thing each group had in common was that everyone was represented almost equally at the beer sales.
Maybe people didn’t have the same plan that I did going into this event. I saw it as a schmorgasboard of different foods, all for my eating pleasure.