Why Do Jewish People Eat Chinese Food On Christmas?

Why Do Jewish People Eat Chinese Food On Christmas
Throughout the 20th century, there was a rise in the number of Jewish Americans dining at Chinese restaurants, particularly within the Jewish community of New York. It has gained attention as a paradoxical type of assimilation by adopting a foreign cuisine that made it easier to consume non-kosher meals.

This has garnered a lot of attention recently. The relative lack of dairy products in comparison to European cuisines, the fear of antisemitic governments in Germany and Italy throughout the 1930s, and the close proximity of Jewish and Chinese immigrants to one other in New York City are all factors that contributed to this phenomenon.

The practice of American Jews to celebrate Christmas or Christmas Eve by going to Chinese restaurants is a common stereotype that is often depicted in film and television. However, this stereotype does have a factual basis, as the tradition may have originated due to the dearth of other restaurants that were open on Christmas Day.

Do Jewish people eat Chinese food for Christmas?

Why Do Jewish People Eat Chinese Food On Christmas More than a century ago, American Jews began celebrating Christmas with a meal consisting of American Chinese cuisine. Even though COVID-19 is taking place over the holiday season, it is anticipated that the annual feast will be held as normal this year, even though it will most likely be taken in the form of delivery or takeaway food.

This activity has become so ingrained in culture that it has been lampooned on Saturday Night Live, discussed in scholarly articles, and reaffirmed by Elena Kagan, a justice on the United States Supreme Court. Rabbi Joshua Eli Plaut, PhD, is the executive director of American Friends of Rabin Medical Center, the rabbi of Metropolitan Synagogue in New York City, and the author of A Kosher Christmas, the leading (and possibly only) comprehensive study on what Jews do during the holiday season.

Rabbi Plaut is considered to be the foremost expert on the practice. Plaut and I had a conversation about having Chinese cuisine for Christmas as well as the reason he used to sit on Santa Claus’s knee. Jews and the holiday of Christmas have been around for quite some time.

  1. When did Jews first begin to wonder, “What should we do on Christmas?” The question has been asked for as long as Christmas has been celebrated, since Jews have always had the perception that they are on the outside looking in.
  2. However, the particular emotions that people experienced were mostly determined by their position in the society.

For example, there was a low level of assimilation among Jews living in Eastern Europe. As a result of the large number of celebrants, many of whom were inebriated, wandering from home to house on Christmas Eve, there was a possibility of violence and pogroms.

Jews did not attend services in the synagogue in order to learn. They remained inside due to concerns over their own safety. If they did anything at all, it was probably games of chess or cards. After the French Revolution, there was a trend toward greater assimilation of Jews in Western Europe. There, people had greater leeway to consider questions such as, “Should I bring a Christmas tree into my home? Should I have a holiday meal? Should I present gifts?” The early Zionist Theodor Herzl was a secular Jew, and he decorated his salon with a Christmas tree.

After the Chief Rabbi of Vienna paid him a visit, he wrote in his journal something along the lines of, “I hope the Rabbi doesn’t think less of me because of this. Then again, what do I care what he thinks?” Is that a custom that’s common among Jewish Americans? Yes.

  • It all starts at the tail end of the 19th century on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, when Jewish and Chinese immigrants lived in close quarters with one another.
  • The American Hebrew publication condemned Jews for eating at non-kosher restaurants in 1899, which is when the very first time that dining in a Chinese restaurant was mentioned in relation to Jews living in the United States.

By the year 1936, a journal known as the East Side Chamber News had claimed that there were at least 18 Chinese tea gardens and chop suey cafes in densely populated Jewish areas. All of these locations were within a short distance of walking to Ratner’s, which at the time was considered to be the most well-known Jewish dairy restaurant in Manhattan.

  1. On Sundays, when they felt excluded from the church lunch, Jews would instead eat out at Chinese restaurants.
  2. It was a slow shift from the traditional diet of Eastern Europe to eating food from China in the United States, and then to eating food from other pan-Asian cuisines, such as Indian food.
  3. I like to claim that within a hundred years of the typical Jew’s arrival in New York, they were more familiar with sushi than gefilte fish.

This is something I like to say. Over the course of the past 35 years, Christmas dinner at a Chinese restaurant in the United States has evolved into a kind of makeshift community where Jews may go to celebrate the holiday with their friends and family.

It is a moment to shut off Christmas and reveal your Jewish identity in a secure atmosphere, but it is also a secular way to enjoy Christmas. Aside from its accessibility, was there any factor that led to the Jewish population’s preference for Chinese cuisine over that of other immigrant cuisines? When it comes to keeping kosher laws, eating at a Chinese restaurant is far less risky than eating at an Italian restaurant.

Meat and dairy products are frequently combined in Italian cuisine. Because dairy products are rarely used in Chinese cuisine, a Chinese restaurant will not combine meat and dairy products in their dishes. When it comes to Chinese-American cuisine, pork is frequently hidden inside other ingredients, such as wontons, in order to maintain its authenticity.

  • Many Jews, both back then and even now, observe kosher laws strictly within their homes but are more lax with regard to the items they consume in dining establishments.
  • Gaye Tuchman, a sociologist, has written extensively on this topic.
  • She identified herself as a trustworthy person.
  • Because it was hidden from their view, many Jews regarded the pig that was used in Chinese cuisine to be acceptable treyf.

That made it simpler to chew and swallow. During the course of your research for this book, did you come across anything that was published from the perspective of a Chinese-American regarding Chinese cuisine and Christmas? I was able to locate a citation from the year 1935 that was published in the New York Times regarding a man by the name of Eng Shee Chuck who owned a restaurant and donated chow mein to the Jewish Children’s Home on Christmas Day.

  • If you were to conduct an interview with the proprietors of Chinese restaurants, they would tell you that Christmas is their busiest day of the year, with the exception of perhaps the New Year’s holiday.
  • However, if you want a more in-depth comprehension, you should certainly visit Chinatown and chat to some of the proprietors of the restaurants there.

On Christmas Day, my family and I almost usually go to the movies, but we do occasionally order Chinese cuisine. When did that begin to be done as a Jewish Christmas tradition in the first place? When Jews first started moving to the Lower East Side of Manhattan, between the years 1880 and 1920, they were destitute immigrants who had just arrived in the United States.

  • They were forced to labor in unsanitary conditions and lived in overcrowded tenements.
  • They would spend their free time going to the recently opened nickelodeons in the area.
  • They were able to see a very early version of a movie for a price ranging from one cent up to five cents.
  • By the year 1909, there were 42 nickelodeons in the area around the Lower East Side, and 10 of them were located uptown in Jewish Harlem.
See also:  What Is Tje Potato Like Vegetable In Chinese Food?

Christmas was treated like any other day off back then, which is why early movies were able to draw in such large crowds. According to reports that appeared in the Yiddish press, the premiere of a new Yiddish theatrical show frequently took place on Christmas Day.

  1. It was a day off from work, so the question now is: what do you do with your time? You have the option of remaining at home, as well as visiting local nickelodeons or Yiddish theaters.
  2. After many years had passed, you would finally be able to visit a Chinese restaurant for a lunch.
  3. What kinds of traditions do you often observe on Christmas? This book was the subject of my studies for many years.

This year, I’ll be spending the holidays with my family in a more rural area, and there won’t be any decent restaurants open. We will probably either watch something on Netflix or play a board game. When you were younger, how did you spend Christmas? Never once did you find me at a Chinese eatery.

What religion eats Chinese on Christmas?

When and why did Jews begin celebrating Christmas with cuisine from Chinese restaurants? NPR’s Robert Siegel talks to Rabbi Joshua Plaut about this holiday custom, so get your chopsticks ready and dig in while you listen to their conversation. ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: What is the thing that a Jew can do on Christmas that is the most American thing they can do? To answer your question, the answer is work for me.

  • Allow one extra person who celebrates Christmas to have the day off.
  • On the other hand, when it comes time to order lunch on Christmas Day, I follow the example of a large number of people who share my religious beliefs and order Chinese food.
  • The consumption of Chinese food on Christmas has become as traditional for American Jews as the baking of apple pies.

In addition, as part of our investigation into the customs surrounding the holidays, we have welcomed Rabbi Joshua Plaut into our studios. Welcome to the show and thank you for having him on it. He is the author of “A Kosher Christmas: ‘Tis the Season to Be Jewish.” JOSHUA PLAUT: Delighted to be in attendance.

Thank you. SIEGEL: In the book, there’s a chapter that’s titled “We Eat Chinese Food on Christmas.” How long has this tradition been going on for? PLAUT: At the very least, since 1935, according to The New York Times, which claims that a guy by the name of Eng Shee Chuck delivered chow mein on Christmas Day to the Jewish Children’s Home in Newark, New Jersey.

That is the earliest published mention of Jews eating Chinese food on Christmas. PLAUT: SIEGEL: Depending on how you choose to look at it, it’s either the discovery of Chinese food by Jews on Christmas or the finding of Jewish consumers by a Chinese restaurant on Christmas.

PLAUT: Probably a little bit of both. SIEGEL: Probably a little bit of both. And this is how it has progressed. Over the course of the years, this has evolved into a rather standard practice. PLAUT: Yes. Actually, the relationship between Jews and Chinese restaurants dates back to 1899, when a publication called the American Jewish Journal criticized Jews for eating at non-kosher restaurants and singled out, in particular, Jews who flocked to Chinese restaurants.

The criticism was directed toward Jews who ate at Chinese restaurants. Therefore, the union of Jewish culture and Chinese cuisine can be traced all the way back to the time when both Jewish people and Chinese people were newcomers to the United States.

  • SIEGEL: This brings up an interesting point about a phrase that is occasionally used to describe Chinese cuisine: “safe trayf.” This phrase uses the Hebrew word for food that is not kosher, which is trayf.
  • What exactly is going on here? Jews dining in Chinese restaurants are unknowingly consuming a variety of non-kosher culinary items, such as shellfish and pig products, which are masked as wontons or eggrolls.

As a result, you are free to indulge in this exquisite dish without having to worry about unknowingly consuming a food item that is not kosher. In addition, milk is never used at dishes served in Chinese restaurants. Therefore, here is a location where you may go to consume food that appears to be acceptable and kosher but is not in fact, and you can do so with a grin on your face and take pleasure in it without feeling bad about it.

SIEGEL: (Laughter) As you record in this chapter of your book, by the 1950s, the draw of Chinese cuisine on Christmas Day – when we should say the Chinese restaurants were open, which is no minor thing that – the fascination became into the stuff of, to use the technical phrase, schtick. SIEGEL: (Laughter) It was fuel for the body as well as for the body’s sense of humor, right? Yes, Mr.

PLAUT. It was brought up in sketches on television with Alan King and Buddy Hackett, respectively. On the Caesar Comedy Hour, Sid Caesar made a joke about it, making fun of or making a caricature out of Jews sitting in Chinese restaurants and being unable to order food or interact with the wait staff.

  • It is highly amusing that Philip Roth mentions in “Portnoy’s Complaint” how Chinese restaurant proprietors believed that Jews and English with a Yiddish accent were speaking the King’s English.
  • Roth’s discussion is very humorous.
  • SIEGEL: So if one were to go there, they would get the impression that they were quite well established in the Chinese restaurant? In all candor, PLAUT: On Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, the local Chinese restaurant served as a sanctuary of refuge for American Jews who experienced feelings of being on the outside.

When you eat at a Chinese restaurant, you instantly become part of the in-crowd. Since it is possible to celebrate someone else’s birthday while still being surrounded by friends, family, and other members of the tribe, an outsider can become an insider over the Christmas holiday.

  • SIEGEL: So, do you have any traditions associated with Christmas Day that include eating Chinese food? PUT: No, I don’t think so.
  • As the son of a rabbi, when I was a kid growing up in Great Neck I often went to visit Santa Claus and sit on his knee.
  • When I was a kid, my family and I would get dressed up and walk around our neighborhood in Great Neck to see the pretty lights that had been strung up on the trees.

After that, we’d head over to Rockefeller Center for some ice skating fun. And I questioned my mother afterwards, while I was working on this book, how she could have taken me out to sit on Santa Claus’s knee when I was the son of a major rabbi and civil rights leader? And she responded with a why not? Everyone in America did that, and you didn’t feel any different about being Jewish because of it.

  • Therefore, there is no reason not to enjoy the Christmas season.
  • SIEGEL: (Laughter) I see. I see.
  • And to continue your mother’s vision and wisdom forward, there is absolutely nothing wrong with non-Jewish American Christian families enjoying some Chinese food on Christmas as well.
  • This is something that your mother would have approved of.
See also:  How Popular Is Chinese Food In America?

PLAUT: I believe that we have become a screaming tradition similar to that of “Fiddler on the Roof.” It’s become somewhat of a holiday custom in the United States to celebrate Christmas with Chinese food. And it’s simply something that’s evolved into a tradition that’s associated with the Christmas season.

  • And it’s part of the joyous season that – it’s one of our modest contributions as Jews living in America to the way of life here in the United States.
  • SIEGEL: Well, Rabbi Joshua Plaut, a very sincere thank you and best wishes for the holiday season.
  • I want to take this opportunity to wish everyone a very happy holiday season, a prosperous new year, and a merry Christmas.

Copyright is owned by NPR as of 2017. We reserve all of our rights. For further information, please see the permissions and conditions of use pages on our website, which may be found at www.npr.org. An NPR contractor works under intense time pressure to provide transcripts for the broadcaster.

What do Jews eat at Christmas?

On Christmas Day, many Jewish families in Canada and the United States will gather with their friends and family to enjoy traditional Chinese restaurant dishes like spring rolls, hot and sour soup, fried rice, and ginger chicken. These are just some of the dishes that can be found at Chinese restaurants.

  • On the 25th of December, Jewish families in the United States and Canada are expected to observe a long-standing custom of going out to eat Chinese food.
  • At the very least, the practice has been documented as far back as 1935, when an article published in the New York Times described an owner of a Chinese restaurant delivering chow mein to a Jewish children’s home in New Jersey on Christmas Day.

The practice is so commonplace at this point that it has been researched, lampooned, and even mentioned by the United States government at one point. During her nomination hearing in 2010, Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan was in attendance. The origins of the tradition are examined in further detail in the following paragraphs.

  1. Because it was inconvenient for them to do so, Jewish and Chinese immigrants who first arrived in Canada and the United States did not recognize December 25 as a holiday at the time of their arrival.
  2. According to Lara Rabinovitch, a historian and culinary writer, this meant that Jewish families were often free on the holiday of Christmas Day, and this also meant that Chinese eateries were open.

“It’s not a new trend, of Jewish immigrants and later their children, and then their children’s children eating at Chinese restaurants on Christmas Day,” Rabinovitch told CTVNews.ca in a FaceTime interview from Toronto. “It’s not a new trend, of Jewish immigrants and later their children, and then their children’s children eating at Chinese restaurants on Christmas Day.” Rose Reisman, a famous Canadian chef and author of several cookbooks, recalls that her parents would take her to dine in Toronto’s Chinatown on Sundays and on significant Christian festivals while she was growing up.

“When these Christian holidays arrived, stores weren’t open, and (my parents) didn’t want to cook at home,” she explained, “so Chinese food restaurants were the only ones open at this time.” As a result, “Chinese food restaurants became the norm.” According to Rabinovitch, the parallel migratory patterns that existed between the Chinese and Jewish populations in North America certainly played a role in the development of this ritual.

During the late 19th century and the early 20th century, massive waves of Jewish and Chinese immigrants began arriving in both Canada and the United States. Many of these immigrants settled in major urban centers, such as New York City and Toronto. According to Rabinovitch, because they were newcomers to these burgeoning cities, they frequently found themselves living in close proximity to one another.

  • When Reisman’s parents first moved to Canada from Eastern Europe, she remembers them telling her about the prejudice they encountered, most of it was hostile in character.
  • According to what Reisman said, “When they got to this nation, they were strangers.
  • There was a Christian ideology and culture in this country, and they did not feel like they fit in.” Rabinovitch believes that the proximity of these two immigrant groups is what ultimately led to interaction between the two groups.

(Map: Public Domain, Jesse Tahirali) (Map: Public Domain, Jesse Tahirali) Rabinovitch believes that this physical closeness ultimately led to interaction between these two immigrant groups. “Where Chinese restaurants flourished and prospered, Jewish communities likewise developed and thrived,” she added.

  • Where Chinese restaurants developed and thrived, so did Jewish communities.” According to Rabinovitch, eating at a Chinese restaurant may have been one of the first ways that Chinese and Jewish immigrants came into intimate touch with one another.
  • There was thus an almost natural fusion, you might say, of the two groups in a social type of sense.” “These immigrant groups were really living and breathing on top of each other in locations like downtown Toronto,” she added, referring to the location of modern-day Spadina Avenue and Kensington Market.

“These immigrant groups were really living and breathing on top of each other.” In New York City in the early 20th century, Jewish and Chinese immigrants also lived in neighboring communities, primarily inhabiting Manhattan’s Lower East Side and Chinatown.

  1. These were also neighborhoods where some of the earliest Chinese restaurants were, and where early factories where Jewish workers worked as well.
  2. So this is maybe where the tradition was born.” Chinatown in New York City, around the year 1930.
  3. Getty Images) The Anshei Minsk Synagogue, which can be found in the Kensington Market area of Toronto, just a few steps from from Chinatown.

(Marlene Leung / CTVNews.ca) Comparable but distinct Rabinovitch argues that not everyone agrees with that approach. She stated, “There’s an opposing end to this notion, that maybe it’s that opposites attract,” which is an alternative interpretation of the theory.

So maybe it’s not so much the commonalities that bring Chinese and Jews together, but maybe it’s the contrasts.” Rabinovitch says that the respective cuisines are likewise characterized by a conflict between the “familiar” and the “strange.” Garlic and onions are frequently used as seasonings in both Ashkenazi Jewish and Chinese cuisine, which is one illustration of the similarities between the two cuisines’ culinary traditions.

In addition, most Chinese cuisine does not contain dairy, and according to Rabinovitch, Jews who follow kosher are required to keep the meat and dairy items separate. There are additional meals that are just superficially similar to one another, such as dumplings (wontons and kreplach) and root pancakes (turnip and latkes).

  • However, the cuisines are very diverse from one another.
  • To provide just one example, traditional Chinese cuisine typically contains a significant amount of pork and shrimp, both of which are forbidden for Jews who follow kosher.
  • Anthony Rose, a chef and restaurateur based in Toronto, notes that for many Jewish-Canadians, a Chinese restaurant was one of the few locations where dietary requirements could be eased.

He remembers that his family had a kosher home, but that “once you were at a Chinese restaurant, that all simply went straight out the window.” “All of a sudden you are eating BBQ pork slices, pork fried rice it was like there were no rules all of a sudden,” Reisman said.

  1. She believes that her parents may have overlooked the restrictions in these instances because pork and shellfish are frequently disguised in Chinese cooking; for example, they may have been chopped up in a sauce or hidden inside a dumpling.
  2. As long as it was hidden away in rice, you could pretend it was chicken or beef, and that was OK,” she added.
See also:  How Long Can Chinese Food Stay Out Of The Fridge?

“As long as it was buried away in rice.” As he was growing up, Reisman remembers being awestruck by the robust flavors that can be found in Chinese cuisine. “I mean, the only thing you couldn’t do at a Chinese-food restaurant was have the (roast) pig served with the apple in its mouth,” he says.

“The sweet and sour, the spices,” says Rose, “my mother would not approve of me saying this, but I have always found it to be way more exciting than Jewish food.” “A party” This culinary custom has become so common that it wasn’t unusual to run into other Jewish families you knew at your favorite Chinese restaurant, says Rose.

When you walked in, it was like a bar mitzvah or a Jewish wedding, he recalls of the now-defunct Lichee Garden in Toronto. “You would come in there, and it was like a Jewish wedding.” It wasn’t just friends and relatives that were there; there were a ton of people around, and you knew every single one of them.

Why do Americans eat Chinese food on New Years Eve?

During the Chinese New Year, there are certain meals that are eaten because of the symbolism behind them. During the 16-day festival season, lucky food is provided, particularly during the Chinese New Year supper on New Year’s Eve. This is because it is thought that eating such cuisine will bring the diner good fortune in the year to come.

The traditional Chinese New Year dishes all have fortunate meanings that are derived from either their pronunciations or their appearances. Not only are the foods themselves important, but also the preparation, as well as the methods in which they are served and eaten, are very significant. Dumplings, seafood, spring rolls, and niangao are among the most typical dishes served during the Chinese New Year holiday.

We have compiled a list of the seven most important foods that are traditionally eaten during the Chinese New Year, also known as the Lunar New Year.

Can Jews eat Chinese food?

The incorporation of non-kosher foods into Jewish diets was made possible by the consumption of Chinese food, which enabled Jews to migrate away from a rigorous adherence to kosher rules. While the majority of first-generation Jews living in America strictly observed kashrut at all times, many second-generation Jews living in America remained strict in their home observance but became more flexible in the foods they ate outside the home.

Chinese cuisine is “unusually well suited to Jewish tastes because, unlike virtually any other cuisine available in America, traditional Chinese cooking rarely uses milk products.” The nature of Chinese food made it possible for them to rationalize this decision because it is “disguised through a process of cutting, chopping, and mincing.

Pork, shrimp, lobster, and other so-called dietary abominations are no longer viewed in their more natural states.” This process of cutting, chopping, and mincing, which was referred to as ko p’eng (to cut and cook) in ancient Chinese texts, rendered the ingredients invisible and therefore safe tre For example, pig was concealed and wrapped in wontons that resembled Jewish kreplach but were actually filled with pork (dumplings).

In the end, this led to many Jews born in the United States abandoning kashrut entirely on the grounds that it was “impractical and antiquated.” The younger generation was able to demonstrate their independence and further build a “cosmopolitan spirit” by disobeying the norms of kashrut by consuming Chinese food.

It is possible to find Orthodox Jewish communities in the United States that have Chinese restaurants that strictly adhere to kashrut standards and are overseen by rabbis. These establishments serve only kosher food.

What does it mean if food is kosher?

The word “kosher” literally translates to “fit” in Hebrew. Any food that is suitable for ingestion by Jewish people is said to as kosher. The regulations of kosher govern not only which foods a person may consume but also how they should make and manage particular foods, including which foods they are allowed to eat and which they are not.

Can Jews eat Chinese food?

The incorporation of non-kosher foods into Jewish diets was made possible by the consumption of Chinese food, which enabled Jews to migrate away from a rigorous adherence to kosher rules. While the majority of first-generation Jews living in America strictly observed kashrut at all times, many second-generation Jews living in America remained strict in their home observance but became more flexible in the foods they ate outside the home.

Chinese cuisine is “unusually well suited to Jewish tastes because, unlike virtually any other cuisine available in America, traditional Chinese cooking rarely uses milk products.” The nature of Chinese food made it possible for them to rationalize this decision because it is “disguised through a process of cutting, chopping, and mincing.

Pork, shrimp, lobster, and other so-called dietary abominations are no longer viewed in their more natural states.” This process of cutting, chopping, and mincing, which was referred to as ko p’eng (to cut and cook) in ancient Chinese texts, rendered the ingredients invisible and therefore safe tre For example, pig was concealed and wrapped in wontons that resembled Jewish kreplach but were actually filled with pork (dumplings).

In the end, this led to many Jews born in the United States abandoning kashrut entirely on the grounds that it was “impractical and antiquated.” The younger generation was able to demonstrate their independence and further build a “cosmopolitan spirit” by disobeying the norms of kashrut by consuming Chinese food.

It is possible to find Orthodox Jewish communities in the United States that have Chinese restaurants that strictly adhere to kashrut standards and are overseen by rabbis. These establishments serve only kosher food.

Why do Americans eat Chinese food on Christmas Eve?

A Brief History Of Chinese Food Served On Christmas Day Chinese cuisine established itself as a Christmas Day staple within immigrant communities that were not mostly Christian. It is believed that the custom began in New York City somewhere in the latter half of the nineteenth century.

Immigrants who came from countries that did not traditionally celebrate Christmas discovered that although they had time off to spend with their families, they did not have any of their own Christmas customs. On Christmas Day, Chinese restaurants remained open and provided patrons with an atmosphere that was friendly of all people.

So began a love affair that would last for a hundred years! At the beginning of the 20th century, the urban, cosmopolitan lifestyle was epitomized by Chinese food. Many immigrants who came to the United States in the 20th century saw eating Chinese food as a way to honor the cultural mosaic that is America.

Take a look at Christine L. ‘s review of Chili House on Yelp Because the pricing at Chinese restaurants can vary widely, it is an excellent option for families that are trying to stick to a strict financial plan. A great number of Chinese dining establishments serve meals in the form of a family gathering, which encourages interaction among diners.

Some residents of San Francisco who observe Christmas choose to have Chinese food for dinner on Christmas Eve or even on Christmas day itself. They choose the low-stress and soothing experience over anything else.