Sunday, August 29, 2010

The parade of unfortunately-named products

If it's Sunday and beautiful out and I'm stuck inside because I have a big project coming up this week and know I should get some work done before that happens so I can run on my merry way to the gym, and various lunch and coffee whatsises, then the least I can do is share some unfortunately-named products and companies with you.

First, there is ARSE. I took this photo in Parque de Los Reyes at a skateboard competition. Who wouldn't want to hire a company called ARSE? They rent security gates and such.

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Here below we have a can of coffee photographed at my mother's house. The word pico means, as you might guess, the peak of a mountain. But in Chile we use it to refer to something men have somewhere roughly south of the equator. How funny! man-part coffee! I know it's juvenile, but my sense of humor has become positively puerile since moving to Chile. I blame the Chileans. And am glad the illustration on the coffee depicts the former, not the later. Hey Long Islanders (and wherever else they sell this product), enjoy your coffee!

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And then we have my favorite, photographed in a supermarket in Seattle, where people do not tsk tsk at you for photographing things unlike in Chile (Santiago supermarket talk here, transparency alert, it's a link to NG, one of my gigs, and yes, I become fabulously rich and famous if you click). And what can I say about this? In Spanish, a masculine word becomes feminine by putting an -a at the end. And puta is the rude word for a woman who works mainly on street corners and the like. So if you put an o at the end, you theorectically make the word masculine, and get a man who works mainly on street corners and the like, also sometimes called a "taxiboy," especially here in Santiago, and apparently after the Gus Von Sant Movie "My Own Private Idaho" but though I saw that movie, I don't remember that part.

And so I give you, "puto." Classic. Steamed, even.

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And I'm kicking myself for not having a picture of the "barfy" brand hamburger patties I saw once, and many other products. What else you got? Travelers, I know you're out there laughing yourselves silly at what you've found.

And you can be as big of a jerk as you want, because I'm prepared. I've got my antimofo sitting right here beside me (photo taken in Sao Paulo at a Home Depot-type store). It's actually a dehumidifier in a can, an anti-mold product if you will. But I like my interpretation better.

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14 comments:

Annje said...

Well, who doesn't love a little pico and puto in the morning? I love the word puerile; it isn't used nearly enough... and you are right to blame the chilenos for that tee-hee! They love that kind of humor.

Heather said...

I'm going to send this link to my fellow Spanish teacher friends that I left behind. We are always snickering about funny things like this and they will get a huge kick out of the puto!

Abby said...

Fuchs bakery and Bimbo bread always make me giggle.

Eileen said...

Annje, I knew you'd enjoy that, fellow language lover and geek! (though probably many of you are).

Heather, please disseminate the puto far and wide!

Abby, I had forgotten about Bimbo (do we get that here, I think maybe not?). Of course, I'll never stop loving the sandwich As, and its various mispellings!

Kyle Crum said...

What happens when you combine the antimofo with the puto? Seems dangerous :)

Eileen said...

Kyle, I'm thinking you get something fierce. Way fierce. Maybe something you'd find in Chiang Mai? Please report back.

Anonymous said...

Hahaha!!! Thank you for brightening up my Monday! I'm passing this along for sure.

Margaret said...

Fun stuff!
Where was the Pico coffee from? Here in Chile it could only be served in cafes con piernas (hahaha).
I've also been collecting photos of products with odd names, although there's one I remember and just cannot find anymore--I SWEAR I once saw a brand of diapers called "Pupy" (for non-Spanish speakers, it's pronounced with a long u).
Abby- good call on Fuchs and Bimbo!

Eileen said...

I just realized that Bimbo is Ideal here, so we don't have it per se. There are so many good products, these were just some I happened to have on hand. There was a time when I also made fun of a product in the states, which is named for mange: http://bearshapedsphere.blogspot.com/2008/11/and-now-one-for-spanish-speakers.html

Fun in all languages!

Abby said...

Yeah I think I remember Bimbo from El Salvador, but you're right, it's the same brand, different name. Kind of like how that brand of ice cream (Savory, maybe?) changes names depending on what country you're in.

carerica said...

Bimbo is supposedly a kind of bread. In Viña I lived in between the two Bimbos. (They were bakeries) You couldn't get lost: "If you pass two Bimbos you've gone to far!"

The other day I was in the shampoo aisle at the supermarket here in Argentina where I joyfully found out that the local head lice treatment shampoo is called... wait for it.. "Assy."

I don't think there's any further comment needed about that. Ta!

Annje said...

I am wondering, following Margaret's comment if the guys that go to cafe piernas would drink "el pico"...
We have el pico here too, I believe it is from Costa Rica maybe...

Margaret said...

Annje-haha- you're right- El Pico is probably NOT the right name for coffee in a cafe con piernas! (is there a cafe con músculos around here?)

planetnomad said...

Love this sort of thing! I wish I'd done better at taking pics of the funnily-named products I've run into on my travels. The two that come to mind are "crust" toothpaste and, worn by a sweet little girl, the tshirt logo "sweat girl."

There were so many more! Oh well. THanks for the laugh.