Mitt Romney expressed his love of papaya in an interview with the host of a Cuban-American radio show in the up for grabs state of Florida, unaware that it is a Cuban slang word for vagina.
The slip-up unfolded after host Carlos Santana brought up the subject of fruit because Romney was headed to “El Palacio de los Jugos” (The Juice Palace).
“They’re waiting for you with a mamey and a guayaba — Cuban fruits — here in Miami, do you like those?” Santana said.
“I am a big fan of mango, papaya, and guava,” Romney replied, causing the host and translator to laugh.
“There are mangos there too.” Santana added, perhaps ribbing the former governor.
Romney could have avoided the mix up through a rudimentary Google search.
According to Frommers.com, which gives travel tips to tourists, the information is well-known.
“If you want to order papaya, remember to call it fruta bomba,” the site says.
“In Cuba, the word papaya is almost always used as pejorative slang referring to a woman’s most private part.”
Incidentally, “El Palacio de los Jugos,” which Romney headed to afterwards, is owned by Reinaldo Bermudez, who was convicted of conspiracy to distribute cocaine in 1999, and served three years in federal prison. So all in all, not the best outcomes of a series of events aimed at the influential Cuban community in Florida.