What to do at a Hapa Party?
April 19, 2010 9:09 AM   Subscribe

What should we do at our 'Hapa party?'

My roommate and I are both Hapas, and we are planning on having a 'Hapa party.' But we don't know what that means. Dressing half one way or half another, serving mixed drinks, and playing Japanese pop half the time are all ideas we've decided against. We'd like to do something more interesting and more substantive. Most of the guests will not be Hapa, and probably not be familiar with the term. Any ideas?
posted by tulseluper to Society & Culture (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
When I think Hapa & party, I think of the awesome 'fusion' foods we kama'āina grew up with: li hung muoy, mochi crunch, poki, shrimp chips, and all the various and sundry [acquired taste] Japanese candies. Have a grill? Make some huli-huli chicken. Or serve Lumpia. It's easy to make a party about Hawai'i into a luau, but the food we know and love tells a story of its own.
posted by wowbobwow at 9:17 AM on April 19, 2010


My definition of "hapa" is not Hawaii-specific, so I'd say have fun with the word "half": Have half-and-half available for coffee (cafe au lait? misto?) and white Russians. (I suppose "a black Russian" could also fit in the category of 'hapa', depending on your definition). An Arnold Palmer is sometimes called a half-and-half. I call black & white cookies "half-moon" cookies. Creole food! And fondue is a form of a melting pot...

If you're not concerned about people getting too up-in-arms about terms, Oreos & Twinkies are delicious foods, but some people find the words derogatory when applied to people.

Serve drinks in half-pint vessels.

Listen to music by Hapa or Sean Lennon and put out a copy of this book (which I own and guests find it neat to flip through).

I'm pretty sure this has used up all my good ideas for the day. Let us know how it turns out!
posted by knile at 11:04 AM on April 19, 2010


I think the difficulty with presenting the more substantive aspects of being Hapa (in my case, feeling like I'm straddling two cultures and often not fully accepted in either) don't really fit themselves into a party mood.

That said, Calpico makes for an awesome cocktail mixer.
posted by jamaro at 1:08 PM on April 19, 2010


I think the difficulty with presenting the more substantive aspects of being Hapa (in my case, feeling like I'm straddling two cultures and often not fully accepted in either) don't really fit themselves into a party mood.

I agree. It's difficult for me to convey this and related sentiments -- that I'm just Filipina enough to be different and mildly "other" to some, but am otherwise not Filipina enough (whatever that means) to others -- and the conversation doesn't exactly lend itself to getting down while raiding the chip n' dip.

Not sure about activities. I like knile's Sean Lennon idea. How about a playlist of mixed musicians? The Yeah Yeah Yeahs (Karen O), Van Halen (Eddie Van Halen), Lenny Kravitz, Amerie....

Fusion foods, definitely! And while not a fusion food itself, I'd really dig some 50-50 bars for dessert. Otherwise, serve up some halo-halo, because it's all about the mix-mix ;)
posted by vespertine at 2:12 PM on April 19, 2010


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