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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Kogi Truck Culture


Food trucks have become a large phenomenon in many parts of Southern California. In fact, the University of California, Los Angeles had begun permitting several food trucks to park on campus for hungry students, in response to the closure of the Bombshelter, a major campus food court. These trucks’ budding popularity has been spurred by the notable Kogi Trucks, which began its business serving those in Los Angeles. To explore the heart of this Kogi hype, I took two trips to the intersection of Gayley and Charles E. Young Drive in Westwood, Los Angeles. Two themes had emerged during my observations: gatekeepers, as well as a shift in conversation focus corresponding with time and position in line. I adopted the Metoyer-Duran gatekeeper model to illustrate the various personalities I encountered. In addition, I propose an information-seeking model to portray a general scheme of what happens in a Kogi waiting line. Possible considerations for future, more extensive studies are also noted.

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