Characterplay with Buttons
Spotted in Shanghai:
The word is 扣子, meaning “button” (the kind you sew onto clothing). In Chinese, the kind of button you press is a totally different word, and even has the verb for “to press” as the first character: 按钮. (When you think about it, it seems kind of dumb that we use “button” for both of those things in English. Sure, you can say “push-button” in English, but it still feels to me like whoever decided to use the word “button” for the new kind that you press wasn’t super bright…)
Here’s the larger context:
It’s not *totally* different, since 鈕扣 (a slightly more formal synonym of 扣子) and 按鈕 do share a character.