Cultural Differences : Ice Cream Edition

There will be challenges raising a bicultural baby: language, certainly, and location, and if she pays any attention to financial news at all she’ll be buffeted with battle-ready aphorisms about how the dollar is ‘struggling’ against the Euro or the Euro is ‘weakening’ against the dollar. Pick a side, kid! The thing I’ve been most worried about, though, is humor. It is difficult to grasp humor in your non-native language, and hard to pick up the cues in an unfamiliar culture. There have been times in Germany when I wondered if I was missing the joke, or if the joke just wasn’t there in the first place. Imagine my pleasure, then, in coming across this billboard:

Romeo and Julia Flavored Ice Cream!

Let’s Play

Where To Begin?

How to play: This billboard is funny in about nine different ways. Which is the funniest? Choose from the options below, or add your own.


  • Imagine what romance really tastes like. Smoldering looks, holding hands, kissing. The only taste in that group is the taste of someone else’s saliva. Romance tastes like spit.
  • Then why is this ice cream so Cremissimo? Creamy spit?
  • It claims to be the creamiest declaration of love of all time. I’m not kidding. It says that! ‘Die Cremigste Liebeserkl√§rung Aller Zeiten’. The Creamiest Declaration of Love of All Time.
  • In the German word Liebeserkl√§rung, meaning Declaration of Love, the word ‘berserk’ features prominently. Granted, they dropped an r, but I think beserk makes more sense than berserk anyway.
  • The ice cream as pictured looks pretty nasty, with rivers of berry sauce and plasticky-looking chocolate hearts
  • The graffiti to the left of the picture is part of the advert. It says ‘R+J 4eva’ or similar.
  • The ice cream brand is Langnese, which translates to Long Nose

Juliet, well done on your apparent escape from the clutches of a berserk defacer of public property.

Romeo, congrats on the ‘long nose’, but you’ve got to think of a way to declare your love that is less… creamy.

Julia, white-and-dark-chocolate-hearts or no white-and-dark-chocolate-hearts, this is not going to end well. Run. Run!


Update: I just did an internet search to confirm that this billboard was a prank, and it’s not! Being Germany, the first Google result was a page describing the minute specifications of the packaging. The second listing was an overview of the Romance Ice Cream Series Cremissimo from Langnese, now featuring Casablanca ice cream. Casablanca is white chocolate with creamy (of course) nougat-flavored ice cream, and the website describes the inclusion of chocolate sauce and almond pieces as bringing you to a Happy End.

I guess this is what comes of a country with no ready access to tubs of pre-made frosting. Rather than the romance-novel-friendly spoonful of Betty Crocker Cream Cheese Frosting, you get ice cream in the flavor of Doktor Shiwago.

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