Boycott Wha?

I don't eat anything that lives in water. I'm not trying to be a lifelong hater -I've attempted since I was little to like anything of the sea in any and all disguises imaginable, but all I've come to be able to gnaw down is deep-fried shrimp... but anything fried more or less tastes the same (delicious!). like..._Because the strong seafood aversion, I've only been to [Wa][1] a handful of times in the four or so years the place has been open, despite having several friends working various jobs in the place at some point in that time. I want so badly to love California rolls and Philly rolls, but even the seaweed is too fishy for me. It's just gross. I've ordered different things there though, and overall I don't have really strong feelings one way or another about the place - but I do know a lot of people who crave that sushi regularly. So I bet by now a lot of people have noticed the signs and flyers to boycott Wa, most prominently posted in the window of the old Children's bookstore next door and in the condos above. On minimal digging, it seems the main fella behind the campaign against the restaurant is Jeremy Claeys, a resident of the 742 Massachusetts condominiums. I'm assuming (correct me if anyone knows better) he is the one who has put together the surprisigly detailed [Boycott Wa website][2] and the (eyes widen and try not to roll backwards) [ Boycott Wa Myspace page][3]. The website offers free t-shirts and/or flyers, and to it's credit backs up its claims with records of the city permits and complaints made to the police. The MySpace is more or less the same (yet I wonder if the buxom Carmel of Hyannis Port, MA is actually a friend to the cause). According to the sites, the owners of Wa purchased the space and began construction before they had a permit, resulting in approximately $20,000 damage to the building. The website also claims that the building's fire alarm has been removed, a resident's plumbing has been broken and left unfixed, residents' cars have been dented as acts of intimidation (are the owners 18-year old boys?) and that the owners have falsified information when obtaining permits. If true, Wa's owners make for some pretty awful neighbors - if not, someone's put a lot of work into their personal campaign to stop the sushi. Either way, Wa's staff doesn't seem scared. [1]: [2]: [3]:


Jill Ensley 15 years, 5 months ago

I JUST saw that tonight.
Hell, the food isn't even that my opinion.

OtherJoel 15 years, 5 months ago

Hmm.. I just briefly skimmed the site. If the claims are true, then it would seem that a boycott isn't really appropriate for this problem. It seems like several ordinances were violated -- why not take this up with the appropriate city agencies? Get the residents involved, make some noise, and maybe they will be forced to repair the damages by someone who actually has some authority. Talk to a lawyer. Ladylaw -- wouldn't you think there would be a civil suit in there somewhere?

I don't know... Again, it just seems like an odd reason for a boycott, which I doubt would really have much of an impact anyway.

theemotleycrude 15 years, 5 months ago

The Boycott Wa roll is delicious and only $6!

Did anyone else notice that Mr. Boycott has placed patio furniture in front of his apartment entrance? I believe that's a violation as well.

April Fleming 15 years, 5 months ago

True, but it's not quite as serious as removing fireproofing and alarms, which if the claims are true would freak me out too.

It seems Claeys is implying that the staff is doing some of this stuff. If I were still waitressing, I for one would not give a shit about some dude the owners were dealing with, at least not enough to dent a car or do the boombox thing.

onceinawhile 15 years, 5 months ago


It seems like they have been reported by the way they include case numbers, no? But I agree.

Also, if that city of Lawrence sign is correct, then they already seem to have been in trouble for construction before obtaining a permit.

How long has this place been open? What construction were they doing if it seems like they've been open for a while?

thetomdotdot 15 years, 5 months ago


If I didn't like my fish dead, I'd almost be tempted to stop by this place. Seems they are getting a lot of free press. Unfounded allegations published on the internet give me the creeps.

April Fleming 15 years, 5 months ago

onceinawhile is right about the stuff being documented seemingly well with the case #s.

Does anyone know if this stuff is unsubstantiated?

billy 15 years, 5 months ago

I have nothing intelligent to say about the boycott.

But, I do like WA's veggie tempura maki / sweet potato maki. I would be very very sad if they went away.

Perhaps a compromise could be worked out, WA follows law and people get their maki!?

Dominic_Sova 15 years, 4 months ago

I can't wait to get my shirt.

I plan on eating a Boycott Wa Roll while wearing a Boycott Wa shirt.

PatrickJoseph 15 years, 4 months ago

Now that would be fantastic. I would make a poster out of that and post it in my windows.

Dominic_Sova 15 years, 4 months ago

I'll give you a call when I'm on my way so you can grab your camera.

p.s. it's been two days, and still no shirt! Can't boycott without the shirt.

thetomdotdot 15 years, 4 months ago

"The permit for Wa Restaurant was denied by the City of Lawrence, so we have ended the boycott. Thank you for your support!"

What permit? I want to know what this means.

Remy 15 years, 4 months ago

Actually, if you read the city code (Chapter 16, Article 8), the little table and chairs is allowed on the sidewalk since it is provided by an "abutting property owner."

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