When you’re working with English as a second language, things can get a little tricky because of all the nuances that may literally get lost in translation.
Something that may sound innocent enough in your native language may take on a whole new meaning if you use the literal translation in English.
For some reason, Japan has made it an art form to come up with ridiculously weird but catchy English names for its various products, services, and anime/manga titles.
As it turns out, even big multinational corporations in Japan are not immune to some translation gaffes, the latest of which is McDonald’s Japan which recently announced the launch of some limited-time treats that they called “Adult Cream Pies.”
Anyone who knows anything about what those terms mean in English will certainly get red-faced at this rather thought-provoking term (either from embarrassment or hilarity).
If you’re clueless about the seedier meaning of “cream pie” at least make sure no one else is watching when you search for it on Google. It’s definitely NSFW.
Japanese customers will have two choices of cream pie.
The first one will set diners back ¥150 ($1.35) and is made of “crispy pie dough kneaded with cocoa powder” and “is packed with chocolate cream using Belgian chocolate.”
The site adds: “A cream pie that fills the hearts of adults with a balance of chocolate sweetness and bitterness.”
Fair enough. But the second product lends itself to more, ahem, creative imagination. It tastes saltier and is stuffed full of cheese cream.
The description reads: “Crispy puff pastry kneaded with Parmesan cheese is packed with sweet cheese cream using cream cheese. A cream pie that fills the hearts of adults with a balance between the sweetness and saltiness of cheese cream.”
It’s not clear if the McDonald’s people in Japan were unaware of the potential double-meaning of their chosen product name but people have been urging the company to take a second look at it.
One Twitter user said: “Gotta love Japan, where they censor porn and have creative products names like this.”
One even offered their translation services to the company, commenting: “If you pay me a few hundred dollars a month I’ll be your English speaking consultant on naming. This literally is a sex term in English.”
A third wrote: “English speaking users please raise your hands up… you know what I mean.”
While another added: “Uh oh… Adult Cream Pie? Learn English Meaning.”