(Jen Chung) If you like jokes in chop suey font, then you'll love this NJ smoke shop's sign! The Fu King Smoke Shop is drawing snickers and sighs in Hackensack, NJ, as city officials try and figure out how to stop it.
According to the Bergen Record, "Fu King is the kind of novelty smoke shop one might find in a quirky college town, Manhattan's West Village and nowadays Colorado, which just legalized marijuana sales for recreational use, fueling a new aboveground pot industry there." There are "posters for the rapper Biggie Smalls, the ska-punk group Sublime, Chinese lanterns, a statue of the Buddha, a lava lamp and a mannequin in a "blunt master" costume that looks like, well, a big blunt — sort of a marijuana cigar. The store's phone number is 201-420-YEAH. The exchange 420 happens to be a popular slang code for marijuana use."
However, owner Robert Reichert denies that he's promoting marijuana use and insists that his store's name is full of meaning: The sound "fu" means wealth in Chinese, and he said, "There is a meaning behind it. It's not just words thrown up on the canvas. If they're offended by reading it, then it's the way their mind is looking at it." Yes, and there's some bamboo at the store!
A town spokesperson told the Daily News that Reichert "did not file for a sign permit. It was an existing awning that he had painted."
The store is also a block from an elementary school, and the PTA president is pretty miffed: "It's almost like it's an insult to the intelligence of our community. Do you really think we don't know what that is supposed to mean? That our children don't know what that means?"
Photo Credit: Getty Images/Sean Gallup