Wandering Dago to keep name despite criticism

August 7, 2013
Updated 8:41 p.m.
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Wandering Dago co-owners, Brandon Snooks and his girlfriend Andrea Loguidice, move a new $2,000 smoker that cooks 200 pounds of meat into position in the driveway of their Keyes Avenue home after the popular Capital Region food truck was removed from Saratoga Race Course in July.
Photographer: Marc Schultz
Wandering Dago co-owners, Brandon Snooks and his girlfriend Andrea Loguidice, move a new $2,000 smoker that cooks 200 pounds of meat into position in the driveway of their Keyes Avenue home after the popular Capital Region food truck was removed from Saratoga Race Course in July.

— After countless debates and an influx of commentary from critics and supporters alike, the operators of a Schenectady food truck have decided to keep the word “dago” in its name.

The term has long been considered a derogatory slur for Italians, originating from the days when Italian immigrants asked to be paid “as the day goes.”

In the 18 days since the Wandering Dago food truck was kicked out of Saratoga Race Course for its name, owners Brandon Snooks and Andrea Loguidice have made national news, defended themselves on social media and conducted a poll on their Facebook page asking whether people think their name should be changed.

On Tuesday, they posted the following message on their Facebook page: “We think it is time — The name of our truck is not changing. Go take down Cracker Barrel or Guido’s Desserts perhaps. They have no problem with people hassling them. I was the Little Dago growing up and if people don’t like the name, they don’t have to do business with us. Make no mistake, we are not calling anyone a ‘Dago’ — that is a self-reference. If you are curious about a self-reference, listen to a rap song. We are Italian and Proud.”

The post received more than 160 “likes” as of 2 p.m. Tuesday, with most commenters applauding the decision. Some commenters who identified themselves as having Italian heritage, however, said they were disappointed by the decision.

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August 7, 2013
4 p.m.
jimbo7149 says...

This is crazy. I will look for them and give them my business.

August 7, 2013
4:17 p.m.
Sparkys_Dad says...

So, I heard a guy say that this is a fine example of disgraceful, ignorant millenial-types whom have no regard for anything because they just plumb don't know. He said; "I bet they own Toyotas, too."
That made me laugh because my dad used to say: They bombed Pearl Harbor ya know? Yeah, I know. Problem is...nobody else knows these days and nobody cares. Detroit declared bankruptcy and we blame GE. Maybe if GM made better cars? Can you truly blame the Japanese Car Owners Association?
This Wandering Dago controversy is just another fine example of idiocracy incarnate. What if their name was the Wandering Jew? (Pass the pastrami and my G-d that's a big knish!) Or the Wandering Pollock? How about the Wandering Kraut or Dike Cart? (No hot dogs and veggie-burger buns have 2 top sides only!)
My friend told me that when he was in NYC he saw a Japanese restaurant called the JAP DOG. What fun! Some think Jap is a derogatory word for Japanese-Americans. Maybe so, but those folks can eat somewhere else. Hey, this used to be a free country.
But here is the rub: Just because a black African American can use the 'N' word (as our proud Little Dago said in the article) does not make it right. This might help explain why America is in it's current state and condition.
Hey! But the Liittle Dago's food cart sounds so cute!
The simple problem is this: The name and reference obviously offends older, Italian Americans brought up in a time when political correctness was not the norm... being hit over the head with a 2 by 4 wielded by some bulldog 'mickies' back in the day WAS the norm. (My older friend knows, he's from Brooklyn.)
Think about it. And the Little Dago says he is Italian and proud? Ya think he stopped for a moment, reflected on this simple thought (just for a moment). What if his loving mommy was goofing on his calling their proud little bundle of Italian joy 'the little grease ball' growing up, eh?
Nah, she gave birth to her own little Dago! The son loved his mother so much he failed to see the bigotry in disguise. Live and learn. Love and forgive.
As my friend says: If you set up a spin-off business called Wandering Jew don't forget the knish! He who's lived and loved has lived and loved knish!
Machen a laben Little Dago!

August 7, 2013
4:32 p.m.
ejbrooksby says...

Their food is awesome. It is worth a trip to wherever they are parked.

August 7, 2013
4:38 p.m.
justapto says...

They go every where; they go here-they go there.
But; They no-a-go to Saratoga.
Good! Schenectady is a part Italian city after all.

August 7, 2013
4:59 p.m.
Will1960 says...

Kudos to the truck owners for standing by their convictions and not caving into the pressure of those believe they have a constitutional right not to be offended.

August 7, 2013
6:04 p.m.
ChuckD says...

Excellent! I get it, no problem, and if I see them, I'll buy.
Now go and sue NYRA, they deserve it.

August 7, 2013
6:34 p.m.
wmarincic says...

Good for them. I will give them my business.

August 7, 2013
7:01 p.m.
cpills says...

I am Italian and I do not have a problem with this individual referring to himself as a "Wondering Dago", not a term I would use , but that is his choice. People have become too politically correct today, it seems they look for reasons to be "offended". If you do not like the term he chose to call his business, don't do business with him, money speaks louder than words.

August 7, 2013
10:27 p.m.
corckmh says...

How could they give up all this free publicity?

August 7, 2013
11:10 p.m.
jathwil says...

Great! Glad to hear this, about time someone stood up for their rights, instead of backing down to these people who think they are so perfect that they can be so critical of others. For heavens sake, just enjoy life. We aren't here for that long. And enjoy their food.

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