A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from March 18, 2016
“What did the sushi say to the bee?"/"Wasabi.”

A popular pun involving the word “wasabi” is:

Q: What did the sushi say to be bee?
A: Wasabi (What’s up, bee).


The joke has been cited in print since at least 2007.


Wikipedia: Wasabi
Wasabi (わさび(山葵)?, earlier 和佐比; Eutrema japonicum/"Wasabia japonica") is a plant of the Brassicaceae family, which includes cabbages, horseradish, and mustard. It is also called Japanese horseradish, although horseradish is a different plant (which is generally used as a substitute for wasabi, due to the scarcity of the wasabi plant). Its stem is used as a condiment and has an extremely strong pungency more akin to hot mustard than the capsaicin in a chili pepper, producing vapours that stimulate the nasal passages more than the tongue. The plant grows naturally along stream beds in mountain river valleys in Japan. The two main cultivars in the marketplace are E. japonicum ‘Daruma’ and ‘Mazuma’, but there are many others. The origin of Wasabi cuisine has been clarified from the oldest historical records; it takes its rise in Nara prefecture.

Ask MetaFilter
What did the sushi say to the bee?
Wasa...bi?
(all in the delivery)
(...)
posted by allkindsoftime at 7:01 AM on February 8, 2007

Sacramento (CA) Bee
September 17, 2007
High Notes from the High Sierra
(...)
Sacramento sushi chef Chris Jackson of the Mikuni family of Japanese restaurants deserves some kind of award for keeping his composure while giving a session on making sushi rolls. The demonstration was outside, in the middle of the Village at Northstar just outside Truckee, on a day so sunny and balmy hordes of bees decided to pay the festival a visit. Jackson, filling in for an ailing Kotaro “Taro” Arai, Mikuni’s executive sushi chef, gave a high-energy lesson with authority, intelligence and wit, and without losing his sense of humor, even after being stung twice by bees. “This reminds me of a joke,” said Jackson after getting stung. “What did the sushi say to the bee: ‘Wasabi!’” OK, so maybe you had to be there.

Google Books
February 2008, Boys’ Life, “Think & Grin,” pg. 52, col. 3:
Andrew: What did the sushi say to the bee?
DongHyeok: What?
Andrew: “Wasabi!”
DongHyeok Kim, Walnut, Calif.

Twitter
Kiyonna Clothing
‏@Kiyonna
producprincess: what did the sushi say to the bee? wasabi!
4:36 PM - 11 Mar 2009

Twitter
Brooke Ryan
‏@ItsBrookeRyan
@PerezHilton What did the sushi say to the bee? WA-SAA-BII?? (like What’s up bee?) hahahahhahaa
6:35 AM - 29 Apr 2009

Inland Valley Daily Bulletin (Rancho Cucamonga CA)
More groaners from joke-telling sushi man in Upland
By David Allen
POSTED: 08/26/14, 9:25 PM PDT | UPDATED: ON 08/26/2014
The corny jokes by Kishi owner Peter Uno in Sunday’s column were said by one reader to be hysterical. (No, it wasn’t Gary Ovitt.)
(...)
. “What does sushi say to the bee? ‘Wassuh, bee?’” (Wasabi, referring to the condiment.)

reddit
What did the sushi say to the bee? (self.Jokes)
submitted October 12, 2014 by FelineRefine
WASABI.
Ah, best lame joke ever.

Facebook
Dad Jokes
January 9, 2015 ·
What did the sushi say to the bee? Wasabi
(thanks Joel)

Twitter
ApronsandBonnets
‏@ApronandBonnet
What did the sushi say to the bee? Wassabee!
#BringBackTheBees, #yummy, #shushi #bento, #maidcafe, #food
12:52 PM - 14 Mar 2016

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityFood/Drink • Friday, March 18, 2016 • Permalink