The Noodlemaker's Tale: happiness, craftsmanship and the transformative power of recognition.
by Toby Barazzuol on Friday Aug 22, 2014
Hidden within this beautiful short film (5 minutes) is a wonderful tale of recognition and how it can actually transform and shape our lives. The film is about Tetsuo Shimizu, a farmer living near Tokyo who has been growing wheat and buckwheat and making udon noodles for most of his life. We love this story because it so gracefully touches on creating value, handcrafted quality and artistry, community, making people happy, the desire for excellence, caring deeply for your land and place - all things that we too value at Eclipse Awards.
Yet if you look closely, you’ll also find a powerful substory about the transformative power of recognition:
Tetsuo says: One day I made Udon for my mother...
"You made it well, you are excellent!" she told me.
“And I let it go to my head...I thought I was the best Udon maker. It has been 45 years now and I hope every day that I will cook perfect Udon noodles.”
Recognized at an early age by his mother as an excellent noodle maker, Tetsuo would devote the next 45 years and beyond to improving and mastering his craft. The recognition his mother gave, helped him to define himself and his role, and also empowered him to step into that role with confidence and energy, ultimately setting him on the path of becoming a master craftsman.
Tetsuo’s story highlights how recognition can be used to empower, bestow confidence, and help people define themselves and their role within a community. Imagine then, the potential of using recognition with intention.
So the next time you wonder if recognizing and appreciating someone will have an impact, even with something as simple as noodle making, we hope you’ll think of Tetsuo’s delicious Udon noodles and how they came to be.