Okay, so remember that girl you knew in college who got the word “love” tattooed on her hip in Chinese? Except what it really said is “I’m a neutered goat”? I know you knew at least one. I knew three. Maybe you even were that girl.
So Cameron Diaz goes hiking around Machu Picchu this week with a super-cute bag with a pretty red star and some fabulous Chinese writing that I’m sure she thought said “faith and love for all.” Except the Chinese writing actually said “Serve the People,” and, combined with the red star, she may as well have stuck Mao Zedong’s face on her T-shirt.
The ringing endorsement of Red China didn’t go over so hot in Peru, where the Maoist insurgency in the 1980s and early 1990s resulted in 70,000 rather brutal deaths.
Of course Cameron didn’t do this on purpose, but it seems to have offended a fair number of Peruvians.
Seriously, people, if you need another reason not to wear any words written in a language you don’t speak, look no further than Engrish.com’s clothing section. Any of you English speakers who have lived in Asia can appreciate how ridiculous it is to see an eight-year-old boy wandering around with an ice-cream cone and a T-shirt that says “Kill me now I want to die.” I’m still kicking myself for not taking a picture of that shit …