Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Tom Matsuoka Interview
Narrator: Tom Matsuoka
Interviewer: Alice Ito
Location: Ridgefield, Washington
Date: May 7, 1998
Densho ID: denshovh-mtom-01-0010

<Begin Segment 10>

AI: When did you first -- you know, by then you were in, you had been here... by that time you were in the U.S. a couple of years, but when did you first realize about the haiseki? When did you first find out about that?

TM: What now?

AI: When did you first experience haiseki?

TM: First I went?

AI: Yeah, first time you had.

TM: Well, anyway, first it was pretty good, though. Never feared haiseki or anything.

AI: At first.

TM: No. But around 1922, I think that's when me and Nakashima-san come out. Gee, no job. We quit Port Angeles and come out. Well, he said his friend is doing market in Pike Market. So Nakashima-san said, "I'm going to rent some permit from some farmer and go to start in the market." Well, in order to get that permit, you have to be with the farmer's recommendation. I think he must get permission from Bryn Mawr someplace. I think town must be gone, place called Bryn Mawr. That's just this side of Renton.

AI: Bryn Mawr?

TM: Bryn Mawr, that's what it was. You go Rainier Avenue to the Renton and just before you hit Renton, there is a small place and that's where Mrs. Shiraishi was there. And one called Yokote, he was there, too -- and both Kumamoto-ken -- Yokote. I think Mr. Nakashima must get the permit from there then he started. So I said, "Oh, that case, why I can go to the market, too, because I can get the permit from my dad." I took permit from Dad, then I went to market. Then him and me both started tachinbo. That's what we used to call. Start in the market, but you should see those day. Holy smoke, lots of people in the Pike Place. About six feet table, that is your table. Every day draw the number and some, some table was really expensive because they have a big business. Those table usually is a corner table, the street will come, and Pike Place is one road and that corner market. Of course, you can sell a lot of stuff in a six feet table. But, anyway, I, off and on I worked in that market quite a bit. Then the meantime you have a chance to play ball, too, in the summertime. [Laughs]

Well, then I don't know how I arrange it, but I work afternoon in market and I was going YMCA school before noon. I don't know how I arrange that one. Anyway, I was work in the market. I know afternoon was I was working in the market, and before noon I was going to YMCA school. I remember school there was no low grade. Start from seventh, seventh and eighth or something like that I think start. Anyway, half day I went to school and half day I was working in the, in the market. Well, then again... let me see. Yeah. Yeah.

<End Segment 10> - Copyright © 1998 Densho. All Rights Reserved.