You may remember learning about Kristallnacht (translated literally as "night of crystal") in history class. It was one of the more blatantly evil actions of the German government in 1938 -- a night when Nazi thugs laid siege to Jewish homes, businesses, and synagogues. Obviously Germany has come a long way since then, and the German people are a bit sensitive to anything that looks like it may be backsliding into racism or anti-Semitism. So clearly it did not go well when a German company appeared to make a snide reference to Kristallnacht in remembrance of the tragedy.
via DerÂ Spiegel
Kristall Sauna-Wellness Park hotel stumbled into an entire tidal basin of shit when it offered spa visitors a "lange romantische Kristall Nacht," or "long romantic night of crystal" on November 9, 2013 -- also known as the 75th anniversary of the original Kristallnacht. We'd like to reiterate: Kristallnacht was not a romantic holiday. It is not now considered some kind of German Valentine's Day -- perhaps some horrible Nazis met and fell in love that first night over the flickering firelight of a burning synagogue, but that is not the kind of love you want to celebrate with a spa day.
Enraged Germans skewered the spa hotel with wordplay of their own, describing it as a "Heil Bad," referencing both the word for "spa" ("Heilbad") and the notorious Nazi salute -- plus, we guess the word "bad" was in there, too, just in case anybody missed the Nazi part. There are no winners in a pun war.
Two million died in Vietnam due to guerrilla-gorilla/Cong-Kong jokes.
The Kristall Sauna-Wellness Park was mortified by its blunder and the ensuing backlash. As an employee explained to the Jerusalem Post, they were all "ashamed of the mistake," which held no political agenda and apparently arose from a general inclination to use "Kristall" in reference to the company in advertisements. As to the oddly serendipitous timing that led them to use the phrase "Kristall Nacht" on the exact anniversary of the original Kristallnacht, well, perhaps we can all look to their event calendar manager, Judith Hitler.
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