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Dog off the menu at Olympic restaurants

Sorry, sir, we're right out of Pekingese

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The Beijing Catering Trade Association has ordered 112 official Olympic restaurants to pull dog from their menus, in order to avoid outraging the delicate sensibilities of pet-loving foreign devils.

The ban is, the BBC explains, designed to "respect the habits of many countries and nationalities", and joins spitting on the pavement, queuing in a disorderly fashion and not smiling cheerfully at foreigners on the list of no-nos for the forthcoming games.

If someone does demand "fragrant meat", as the locals call it, restaurant staff should "patiently suggest another entree", according to Xiong Yumei, deputy director of the Beijing Tourism Bureau.

BBC's James Reynolds notes that the dog clampdown is "one of several steps taken by China to avoid foreign visitors being amused or offended by local customs". Strange then, that China has not rethought its Segway-mounted anti-terror squad or its habit of jailing dissident bloggers - likely to cause amusement and offence, respectively. ®

Bootnote

Actually, we're right behind hard jail time for bloggers. Breaking rocks for a couple of years will cure 'em of the urge to discuss at great length what their cat did last night.

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