Boba Square

Wuttiporn Taksinvarajarn

An object can be viewed differently from different angles. Everyday activities might dictate different approaches in their meaning corresponding to different societies. Repeated experiences between urban residents and ordinary routines could reveal spatial, social, and aesthetic meaning of the society. Different strategies and tactics which are used to sell Bubble tea reflect the society’s characteristic. In Taiwan, most of bubble teashops are a stand-shop, open only through the window. This type of arrangement is to fit with the rushing society and the limited of space in Taiwan. In Thailand, popularity has decreased the form of bubble teashops from a hang out café to a street cart. This is because the bubble tea is very similar to Thai drinks and also the big bubble tea franchise companies could not compete with the local street sellers who offered a triple cheaper price for Thai drinks and bubble tea drinks. In Seattle’s University District, with four factors, Mee Sum Pastry and Bubble tea shops have become a public space for international students especially Taiwanese. The first factor is the abrupt changes of everyday activities such as an immigration issue. International students seek a place that is familiar to where they are from and create it as their own space. The second factor is the characteristic of the University District as a temporary space allowing the space to have different meaning depending on who is there. The third factor is the important role of commodity that develops the public space in the form of privatized space. Last, the acceptance and appreciation of Americans toward the taste of bubble tea allows bubble tea shops to survive in American society.

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