Tuesday, August 11, 2020

I read the news today, oh boy . . .


I am indebted to my father in law, Noel, for bringing the following story to my attention: 

Canada brewery apologises for beer named 'pubic hair' in Maori 

A Canadian brewery has apologised for unwittingly naming one of its beers after a Maori word that is commonly used to mean pubic hair. Hell's Basement Brewery in Alberta said it released its Huruhuru pale ale two years ago, thinking it meant "feather". But Maori TV personality Te Hamua Nikora pointed out the common interpretation of the word in a Facebook video. 

The brewery's founder said the product would now be rebranded. "We acknowledge that we did not consider the commonplace use of the term huruhuru as a reference to pubic hair, and that consultation with a Maori representative would have been a better reference than online dictionaries," Mike Patriquin told Canadian network CBC. "We wish to make especially clear that it was not our intent to infringe upon, appropriate, or offend the Maori culture or people in any way; to those who feel disrespected, we apologise." 

Mr Nikora also criticised a leather store in New Zealand for using the name Huruhuru and said he had contacted both the store and brewery over their use of the word. "Some people call it appreciation, I call it appropriation," he said. "It's that entitlement disease they've got. Stop it. Use your own language." 

BBC News 


The above reminds me of the Mitsubishi Pajero, a famous car and name sold around the world. The name means nothing in English but in Spanish, pronounced pa-hair-oh, it means “wanker”. In most Spanish speaking countries, the Mitsubishi Pajero is rebadged as the ‘Montiero’ (which is roughly translated as ‘Mountain Warrior’). 

Whilst on the topic of unfortunate car names by Mazda, let’s add the Mazda LaPuta to the pile. It comes from Jonathon Swift’s 1726 book Gulliver’s Travels, where it is the name of a flying island. Unfortunately is also Spanish for “The Whore”. Some Spanish editions of "Gulliver's Travels" use "Lapuntu", "Laput", "Lapuda" and "Lupata" as alternative names but the joke is Swift’s. Given Swift's education and satirical style, and that Gulliver claimed Spanish among the many languages in which he was fluent, it likely that Swift knew the Spanish meaning of the word. 


Jack And The Beanstalk is all about male sexual awakening according to leading academic 

Yep, you read that right. I read the article and kept anticipating that it would say that it was tongue in cheek, a bit of satire, but not so. So I guess that it’s the real thing. More of that in a moment. 

The basis of the Jack and the Beanstalk story is believed to hark back to between 4500-2500 BC. The modern version was first published in 1734 as The Story of Jack Spriggins and the Enchanted Bean". 

Fast forward to the present day. 

According to creative writing lecturer and author Claire Corbett, an academic at the University of Technology, Sydney: 

- Child psychologist Bruno Bettelheim first pointed out that the beanstalk was symbolic of a phallus in the 1970s. 

- In trying to prove Bettelheim wrong, she came to the realization that he was actually right. 

- “If the beanstalk is maturing male sexuality then Jack And The Beanstalk is a story about male individuation and growing up.” 

- Jack lives with his mother. The fact that the cow no longer gives milk and is to be sold is symbolic of his mother going through menopause. 

- Instead of selling the cow he trades it for some magic beans, This represents defiance of his mother and his standing on his own feet. 

- The beanstalk growing and rising to the heavens . . . . well, use your imagination. 

- So what does the cutting down of the beanstalk at the end symbolise? According to Corbett: “But if the beanstalk is the phallus, why does he cut it down?” The answer is simple; he doesn’t really cut it down. I don’t think that powerful beanstalk is destroyed. “It’s fulfilled its function of propelling him … into manhood and now it’s part of him, part of himself, not external anymore. Perhaps a bit more under his control.” 


Has that made it clearer for you, readers? 


Nursing Home Residents Recreate Iconic Album Covers During Lockdown 

Seniors quarantined at Sydmar Lodge Care Home in Middlesex, IUK, are using lockdown to recreate an array of iconic album covers . . . 

Smithsonian Magazine 

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