Saturday, May 26, 2018

Names (and Signs) that Are Bad for Business

I can't get over this brand name for fresh fruit, which I saw adorning a pile of cardboard trays at a supermarket:

Gesex? GESEX? Genetically engineered sex? What?

I was afraid to Google it to find out, but persevered. It's a Chilean company, so maybe there's a translation problem here, kind of like Chevrolet and its Nova model ("nova" means "doesn't go" in Spanish). But really... GESEX?

Then there's this sign for a chiropractor in Highland Park, St. Paul. The name is fine, but look at that sign. You have to spend a lot of money for a lit box sign: maybe you should reserve a tiny amount of cash for designing what the sign looks like.

This shop, which sells vaping products in Northern Virginia, is as unconscious of its odd terminology as the owners of Endwell Animal Hospital. This sign may not be bad for business (the intended audience may be happy to breathe the vapors of liberty), but it's bad for the English language.

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