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February 27, 2006 12:03 AM

Broken: "Fortune" store mall sign

FartKevin Jones sends in this picture taken at a shopping mall in Belarus:

I recently went on a trip to the country of Belarus with my girlfriend. We were walking around a shopping mall and discovered this sign.

The store is suppose to be a "hip" clothing store, so the sign is made to be in English. The name of the store is actually "fortune."

In Russian, (the native language in Belarus) they abbreviate the word fortune. The abbreviation translates to "fart."

The store clerk is aware and just said they didn't know what it meant at the time. Oh well, it has probably tripled their sales.



Broken. Making customers think about things that smell bad isn't good business practice. It's like naming a shoe store "Rotten Eggs."

Posted by: Jello at February 27, 2006 12:07 AM

Anybody with a remote sense of 'goofyness' who sees that sign will cruise right in there. That's a great sales booster!

Posted by: BlastYoBoots at February 27, 2006 12:27 AM

ugh enough with the engrish

Posted by: gmangw at February 27, 2006 12:38 AM

the abbreviation doesn't translate to "fart", it happens to spell "fart" in english. You said yourself that it translates to 'fortune'.

Posted by: sir_flexalot at February 27, 2006 08:23 AM

'It's like naming a shoe store "Rotten Eggs."'

Or, say, 'Painful Rectal Itch Jam'.

Posted by: DaveC426913 at February 27, 2006 10:02 AM

If the folks that live there understand it then I don't see a problem.

Amusing maybe but not broken

Posted by: : at February 27, 2006 10:29 AM

As much as these "engrish" posts amuse me, there are *millions* of examples of them out there.. This is a specific class of "broken" that we might be able to live without here.

There's a difference between a design flaw and someone writing in a language they're not familiar with.

Posted by: David at February 27, 2006 11:28 AM

The store sign says exactly what it means "Fortune".

It's in russian. You can't understand russian, can you? Then, why ask them to understand english...

just my 2cents

Posted by: D at February 27, 2006 11:35 AM

I think D is right, this isnt broken, whats broken is we think english is the center of the world. There are many words in English that I bet look stupid in other languages.

Posted by: Mike Robinson at February 27, 2006 01:28 PM

Is this a command or just a suggestion?

Posted by: aynne at February 27, 2006 03:21 PM

I love this page :)

Cant play Quake 3

Posted by: Sarah at February 27, 2006 04:07 PM

Regardless if it's broken or not (and likely not), it's always interesting how other cultures pronounce or spell their words, acronyms or slang. Of course this grouping of letters may indeed be completely normal for them and has nothing to do with English flatulence. But it's still funny and makes for good entertainment.

This post reminds me of the recent similar TIB entry for BARF Dishwashing Liquid. :-)

Posted by: Z at February 27, 2006 04:08 PM

You guys are so immature.

Posted by: FLCL at February 27, 2006 05:17 PM

You guys are so immature.

omg ur ghei

Posted by: Jello B. at February 27, 2006 06:37 PM

Sorry...if it's probably tripled their sales, then it's not broken...danged funny, though...

Is this a command or just a suggestion?

Aynne, that's still the best comment on this page.

Posted by: =David at February 27, 2006 07:44 PM

You who say that it is not broken would be correct, IF it was written in Cyrillic. Like the sender said, they transliterated it into the English (Latin) alphabet, and transliterated, it becomes "fart." That's what's broken. If they were writing signs in Cyrillic, they shouldn't care, but they're writing it with the English alphabet, so they should first check to see if it is meaningful in English/French/German/etc. Any computer translation engine could tell them what a "fart" is to an English-speaker.

Posted by: Brian at February 27, 2006 08:16 PM

It's as broken as naming a car NOVA and selling it in the US. If you sold the car in a spanish speaking country, it would probably flop. Here, it's like celestial.... But hey... why worry about the whole broken/non-broken thing when we can just make jokes about going to FART in Belarus?

Posted by: errata at February 27, 2006 09:11 PM

Ok. First of all, I have to agree with Mike Robinson, I bet a lot of our english words look stupid, but then, I disagree with him. Have you ever written a russian word in Latin writing? I have. Maybe it comes out to something different, but maybe they just tried to make more people understand.

PS: "Fart" is slang, and therefore not in most online dictionarys.

Posted by: James Bond at February 27, 2006 10:01 PM

FART is an anagram for FRAT. Maybe they should just try to rearrange the two letters in the middle. It would work if they are trying to appeal to twenty-somethings.

Posted by: Capt. Wafer at February 28, 2006 02:53 PM

It looks Photoshopped.

Posted by: will at March 1, 2006 02:57 PM

It looked superimposed before I even looked at everyone's comments. First off if every other article in the photograph has tarnished look to it why is the sign so defined and brighter? Second would you really see shadows of the lettering on a window if there is light coming from both sides? If a "shadow" or reflection of the back of the sign was produced on the glass would each "shadow" extend the same length from it's source? In otherwords why do the "shadows" from the lettering look like there is only one light source shining on them from the outside of the store? Just my two cents, what do all of you think now? Does my intuition deceive me?

Posted by: Chizzla at March 8, 2006 11:03 AM

The mirror with "FA" on it may have originally had a Mirror next to it that had "RT" on it.

Posted by: Timm at March 8, 2006 10:45 PM

I meant that the "FA" could be written on the mirror and is not a reflection.

Posted by: Timm at March 8, 2006 10:53 PM

I was going to mention something about that as well but it's hard to tell if that area of the photograph is supposed to be another sign within the store or a reflection of the original. That "FA" has the same superimposed look of the original, but I left it out of my original post because the "sign" in front of the store seemed to have enough errors with it that I didn't feel the need to criticize the rest of this "artist's" work to make my point.

Posted by: Chizzla at March 10, 2006 02:09 PM

Chizzla - The "shadow" is painted on. It's part of the artwork, and not caused by the lighting. Shadows on glass would be pretty hard to see anyway, doncha think?

Posted by: Brian at March 10, 2006 02:41 PM

> In Russian, (the native language in Belarus)

this comment is broken

the native language of Belarus is NOT Russian!

the answer is in the question!

the Belarussian language has all but been eliminated by the Moscow aresly-bum-lick who is their dictator (who recentlyl _won_ a third term in office by the same democratic means that Bush did in the USA)

Posted by: jzaw at March 27, 2006 10:32 PM

jzaw: by "won" do you mean by using that green stuff that folds?

Posted by: at April 30, 2006 02:59 AM

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