Friday, January 14, 2005

Tsunami Tsensitivity

I'd heard this was coming, and today's USA Today confirms it.

When the Wilderness Resort in Wisconsin Dells, Wis., launched its Great Tsunami outdoor wave pool in July, many patrons had to ask what the name meant. Now, the park's chagrined owners — along with operators of several other tsunami-themed water attractions — are changing the names after last month's South Asian disaster.

"Who could have guessed when we opened (the ride) that we'd be dealing with this worldwide catastrophe?" says Wilderness Resort spokeswoman Heidi Fendos. The resort decided Thursday to come up with a new name and will be donating a portion of January revenue to a UNICEF relief fund.

The sign on the attraction was scheduled to come down this morning. But that's not the only name change on the schedule.

The resort also will drop plans to name a three-story water slide to open this summer "The Hurricane." It has yet to decide new names for either attraction, [the resort's director of sales and marketing, Joe] Eck said.

On one hand, I fully understand and even support the decision to rename "The Great Tsunami" wave pool. And I suppose it beats the option of making "The Great Tsunami" more authentic by adding floating corpses. However, renaming "The Hurricane" seems less compelling somehow. There's got to be a limit. People die in blizzards, but Dairy Queen soldiers on. The convenience store near my home sells a fast-food item called a "tornado," but I've never considered that insensitive to people who live in trailer parks.

(Cross-posted to Badger Blog Alliance)


At 10:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree. Our "tsensitivity" becomes limiting when common words are deemed offensive. How shall we describe the next big wave or over-sized tropical storm without hurting someones feelings? -Sanna

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