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Long gone are the good old days when a cat's biggest worries were mean dogs or a bath. Modern cats must confront satanists, online predators, the possibility of needing to survive in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, and countless other threats to their nine lives.
Many of you probably don't know where the name EXXON came from. It used to be "Esso" and some others. Well, the company used such computer resources as were available at the time to find a word that meant nothing at all in any language. This can actually be important.
The Chevrolet Nova was a poor seller in Spanish speaking countries as No va means "No Go" in Spanish.
When in grad school, we had a visiting professor from Brazil - when hysterical, laughing, when Pay Day came around and everyone spoke about it: in (Brazilian) Portuguese it means "Fart Day"
Within the last few days I posted about the problems of giving and receiving "Gift"'s from Germans
and the misunderstandings that could invoke.
Many Asians, such as Chinese, use red for celebrations (like weddings) and white for sad ones (like funerals). So, what does it mean (aside from supposed virginity) when a bride wears white? The imminent death of her husband's freedom, I suppose.
The point being, then, you are highly likely (without the Exxon example) to do anything or say anything that doesn't have a different implication in some other culture. Unless done deliberately to offend, it's impossible to not find cultural conflicts that simply have to be endured.
I'm glad Bob's kept his green hat on - because (at least in North America, well away from Eire), said green hats are part of an annual party ritual that has no intent to upset Chinese.
A certain company, that shall remain nameless, picked "Amadeus" as a name that would not offend anyone or be insulting or degrading in any language around the world. Apparently they paid a consulting firm over DM 200,000 to find this out for them.
All well and good except when I typed the name into a Word document, the spell checker's first suggestion for a correction was "Amateurs"!
- I would love to change the world, but they won’t give me the source code.
Chevy Nova isn't the worst example either.
A few that comes to mind are Mazda Laputa and Mitsubishi Pajero, both for their meaning in Spanish.
And I should also mention that Honda Fit/Jazz was originally supposed to be named Honda Fitta, until someone told them what Fitta means in Swedish