Home > Humorous > An Unfortunate Choice Of Words…

An Unfortunate Choice Of Words…

Whilst paying for some goods the other day at my local drug store, my eyes came to rest on an item displayed at the till. 

 

immodium

 

Casually scanning the caption: ‘Can stop diarrhoea melts in the mouth,’ I wondered if someone in the design department of McNeil Healthcare* was having a laugh.   

Upon sharing this image with The Other Half, he immediately broke into a goofy improvisation of a doctor and his patient:

Patient: Doctor, I have terrible diarrhoea!

Doctor: I see, what kind of diarrhoea is it? The bum kind or the melt-in-your-mouth kind?   

Needless to say this had me writhing on the floor in fits of childish laughter, and to those (and there will be some) who do not share my crude sense of humour; many apologies as I continue literally talking shit :).    

The purpose of this post should have been to impart something constructive and insightful; like the importance of punctuation and word usage, or the significance of leading and kerning; so I considered this at length, and decided to make fun of shabby typography instead.

In regards to the above image, I would suggest making the following amendments:

 

immodiumedit

 

This way, consumers would be confident in what the product is used for.  In an age where our children (and many adults) struggle with day-to-day tasks like…reading and writing, it is important that manufacturers provide a clear and direct message, particularly on medication.

Certainly I have never experienced or even encountered a case of diarrhoea melting in the mouth, but then again it was only recent that I found out there exists such a parasite called a lung fluke, which once in our lungs, will burrow through the soft tissues as they grow, eventually causing violent coughing and thereby projecting themselves into our mouths (through saliva and blood) and re-entering our systems via the oesophagus when we swallow, just so they can be expelled through our bowel movements to begin their cycle once again.  So with that stupendous feat in mind, perhaps it is not so impossible to sustain a case of melt-in-the-mouth diarrhoea.

Whilst scrutinising these melty-poo caplets, I was reminded of some signs and labels I’ve come across in the past.  As most of the products I deal with at my workplace are manufactured in China or Thailand, bad English inevitably makes an appearance at every turn (and no, I am not trying to ridicule the standard of English in China or Thailand; their products do that.)  Sometimes though, it is more an unfortunate choice in translation. 

Take ‘Ching Kee Cookie Rolls’ for example; if you were Chinese, you would instantly realise that these cookie rolls are the brain-child of Mr. Ching Kee.  However, take the ‘being Chinese’ part out of the equation and you get a seemingly scrumptious, hollow snack with a politically incorrect name.  Where it is sold in Asia, people are unlikely to even notice this – but something tells me that the person responsible for UK distribution took one look at the label, giggled his butt off and sent them away to the sales department with a stupid grin on his face.

 

ckcookie

 

Another one that comes to mind is ‘Huatuo Da Poo Tonic Wine’.  Don’t know what to think?  Me neither; and they wonder why westerners find the east such a mystical conundrum.  They eat fried lice and drink poo wine; that’s what I hear, anyway.  And the most amusing thing about this particular wine?  Is that nowhere in any part of its name does it sound like ‘da poo’ in any Chinese dialect.

 

dapoo

 

And the Pièce de Résistance: somewhere amidst these horribly translated names and confounding words, emerges a victor; the mess to top all messes.  ‘KYH Vegetarian Yam Kidneys.’  I mean, really – what is that?  Some kind of edible oxymoron?  Vegetarian yam on its own is a perplexing concept; considering yam is already a vegetable, do the two somehow cancel each other out and make it a meat? Maths was never my forte in school but Vegetarian Yams evoke a vivid memory of my dear friend, Haggis saying to me, “two negatives make a positive”…

 

yamequation

 

Or maybe they are suggesting that I can use terms like, ‘vegetarian carrot’ and ‘vegetarian celery’ to emphasise their vegetarian…ness?  Whilst considering this riddle, I then notice how someone has added an irrefutably meat item into the mix, just for the hell of it.  Vegetarian Yam Kidneys; do these ‘kidneys’ that they refer to belong to the Yams? Or have they created some perverse, kidney-shaped objects with this dubiously named, vegetarian vegetable and put it into a tacky-looking packet in the hope that someone illiterate will buy it? On further inspection of the contents I came to the temporary conclusion that it is, in fact, for the visually impaired; as anyone with any reasonable sight is unlikely to willingly eat it.

 

vegyam

 

I guess we will never know until someone is brazen enough to try; volunteers please apply via comments.

 

___________________________________________________________________________

* The statements and opinions expressed herein are the author’s and not those of McNeil Healthcare or any companies relating to the aforementioned products.  Imodium also does not really stop diarrhoea from melting in the mouth.  

 

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  1. January 23, 2010 at 11:41 pm

    wow…what ARE those kidney things? have we eaten them before?
    LOL i sure do hope i never get melty squits in MY mouth. ew.

    lol another blog entry that successfully brightened up my day!

  2. January 24, 2010 at 12:05 am

    Haha I’m glad! And nope – we have not eaten those Yam Kidneys before… X_X

  3. January 24, 2010 at 11:39 am

    Mmmmmm, pooey melt in the mouth goodness….tastes just like chocolate…honest.

    ….ok ok, LOOKS just like chocolate….DON’T sniff it!!

    I TOLD you not to sniff it!!

    Noone ever listens to me.

    • January 24, 2010 at 2:10 pm

      LMAO. Lucky those yam kidneys aren’t brown. Although bleached white is not really a very appealing food colour, is it?

  4. Paddy
    January 25, 2010 at 9:41 am

    Yet again darling you have made a grumpy old bastard smile 1st thing in the morning! that is a task and a half please believe!!!! Keep up the writing you truly do have a gift!!!!! peace!

    • January 25, 2010 at 11:05 am

      I’m so glad you liked it 🙂 Thank you for the kind words they really mean a lot to me. Xxx Hope the smile will help to carry you through some of the day.

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