A particular Chinese New Year shirt available at FairPrice Xtra stores has caused some commotion recently.
Here’s the one in question:
The bright red shirt, which cost S$12.90, had a single Chinese word “寿” (read as “Shou”) printed on it.
Two other designs, “福” (read as “Fu”) and “禄” (read as “Lu”), were also available.
Together, the three words represent three deities in traditional Chinese culture, embodying qualities of prosperity, status, and longevity.
But the well-meaning idea, unfortunately, would not translate when taken out of context.
Taken in isolation, the shirt with the word “Shou” could be interpreted as burial clothes. Which can be rather “inauspicious” and distasteful to wear for the new year.
Here are some responses to the photo that was uploaded to Facebook:
Taken off the shelves
In response to public reactions, a FairPrice spokesperson expressed appreciation towards public feedback and acknowledged that the series of products might have been inappropriate to some, according to Shinmin Daily News.
They clarified that the shirt design actually means “Longevity” and apologised for any misunderstanding caused.
The shirts have also been removed from all the FairPrice Xtra stores.
Top photo by Ming Bok/Facebook
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