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Hard-spell advertising.

Even in this age of Internet pop-ups and text-message marketing, many small businesses still, advertise with low-tech, hand-lettered signs. And these often come with fractured grammar and creative spelling that provide insights into new immigrant communities taking root in U.S. cities. Elyse B. Rudolph, director of the Literacy Assistance Center, which helps newcomers learn English, says that many immigrants, though smart and ambitious, are not Literate in English or their native Language. Overlapping of nationalities often compounds the language problem: With Mexicans working in pizzerias and Afghans running hot-dog stands, even ethnic words get misspelled. One New York pizzeria offers "spaguetti" and the sign on a lunch cart lists an Eastern European potato pie as a "kanish" instead of a knish. Even when stores change hands and signs are repainted, some messages linger. A "Convinient Store" in Brooklyn still bears a sign from the days when pagers were all the rage: "Beerpers."
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Title Annotation:English literacy
Publication:New York Times Upfront
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 5, 2005
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