Taiwan was experiencing what’s dubbed “salmon chaos” by local media, after about 150 mostly young people officially changed their names to “salmon” (guiyu, 鮭魚) at government offices in recent days. The reason? Because a Japanese sushi restaurant chain called Akindo Sushiro promised free meals for anyone with the name.
The promo only ran for two days, and those with “salmon” in their names would get free meals for the entire table, and those with homophonic names could enjoy half price, while those with at least one homophonic character would get 10% off their bill.
The situation was so out of hand that a Taiwanese official had to plead with people to stop changing their names. To change their names on a new ID card and household registration certificate, an applicant must pay NT$80. But the price is a small one to pay, apparently.
According to Taipei Times, two diners managed to eat NT$13,000 worth of sushi in one sitting with their friends. Some participants have also decided to get creative with their new names – one set a new record for longest name at 36 characters to include seafood items like “abalone”, “crab” and “lobster”, according to United Daily News.
While it may seem rather reckless to change names simply for a two-day promo, many have confessed that they would change their names back to their original. According to the Ministry of Interior, people are legally allowed to change their name three times.
But for one man surnamed Hsu, he’s stuck with his new fishy name because didn’t know that his mother had changed his name twice when he was a child.
Would you change your name for a promo like this?