While it’s a novel — albeit slightly bizarre idea — to let good looking people eat for free at a Chinese eatery in Zhengzhou City, China, people only actually enjoy a “free lunch” if they are among the five best looking patrons of the day.
Without going into the moral issue of whatever ‘ist” one would be called for judging people solely on their looks, the restaurant has seen some significant success with its new promotion.
The restaurant, named Jeju Island, which serves a type of Korean-Chinese fusion food, displays a prominent sign outside its front door with the words, “Free Meal for Goodlooking.”
Just to make the whole thing even more weird, you’ll never guess who the judges are; Five plastic surgeons who work locally! Any prospective candidates for the free meal are approached by restaurant staff and taken into a “beauty identification area,” where they are photographed.
The photos are then analysed by the team of doctor-judges, who rate the diners based on the “beauty” of their faces, eyes, noses, and mouths.
Apparently, protruding foreheads are considered a sign of beauty in the region, and the marks received are displayed prominently on the restaurant’s second floor.
News of the new free meal promotion made its way quickly around Chinese social media, with people weighing in with their jokes about it. One Weibo user, for example, wrote, “I reckon I can get a one percent discount with my face,” while another wondered, “Do the ugly have to pay twice?”
For their part, Zhengzhou authorities weren’t amused by the restaurant’s new promotion, accusing them of damaging the city’s image, while never even receiving permission to hang such a sign promoting the “free lunch.”
On Tuesday in fact, the offending sign was taken down after teams of security guards and demolition workers descended on the restaurant and demanded its removal.
The restaurant’s manager Xue Hexin, however, said that the removal of the sign did not mean that the promotion has ceased. As she said to reporters, “We will be more prudent with our advertising in future. But the promotion will continue despite the demolition of our sign.”