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Off topic: Where do you get your best ideas and inspiration?
Thread poster: Krokodil
Krokodil
Germany
Local time: 10:36
German to English
+ ...
Sep 27, 2004

Hi folks,

I'd be interested to know what environments or situations give you your best ideas and inspire you the most.

Doesn't necessarily have to be anything translation-related (though this would interest me most) - anything to do with life in general is fine!

In my case, it's usually while shaving in the morning!

- Croc


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Levan Namoradze  Identity Verified
Georgia
Local time: 12:36
Member (2005)
English to Georgian
+ ...
having cup of coffee... Sep 27, 2004

When having a cup of coffee in the morning. Or being paid for a job. Or when our national soccer team wins. The last one happens very seldom...

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RobinB  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:36
German to English
Under the shower... Sep 27, 2004

...after several cups of coffee and reading through that day's FT. Then it's a question of remembering all the brilliant ideas you've just had (memory starts going with age, you know).

Robin


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drmab
English to French
there and other places Sep 27, 2004

RobinB wrote:

Under the shower
...after several cups of coffee and reading through that day's FT. Then it's a question of remembering all the brilliant ideas you've just had (memory starts going with age, you know).

Robin


I seem to recall an article, a few years back (I think it was in "The Sciences"), on the influence of showers on sciences. Seems a lot of us get their ideas there. Something to do with the soothing effects and sound of water falling.

I also get them while walking (which is why I got myself a dictaphone when I was working on my thesis).

Marc


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Pablo Roufogalis
Colombia
Local time: 03:36
English to Spanish
Early Morning Sep 27, 2004

I get my best ideas early in the morning, that is, in bed before getting up to start the day.

I've found that pressure helps or at least lower my standards enough to find an acceptable solution.


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Rosa Maria Duenas Rios  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:36
Plants and dreams Sep 27, 2004

When I am working in my garden or, during those few minutes before falling asleep.

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Klaus Herrmann  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:36
Member (2002)
English to German
+ ...
..or taking a hot bath Sep 27, 2004

A long shower or a hot bath is where I get what I'd like to think of as good ideas. @RobinB: At least we agree 100% on ordentliche Schlauchführung:-)

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xxxSaifa
Local time: 10:36
German to French
+ ...
After taekwon-do.. Sep 27, 2004

After 1,5 hour taekwon-do or a long walk with the dog, I am then able to work surprisingly concentrated and well!

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Sarah Downing  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:36
German to English
+ ...
In bed or in the shower Sep 27, 2004

Hi Robin,

I sometimes get ideas for poems (I used to write a lot of poetry) while in bed - I guess the events of the day are whizzing through your head. I also tend to muse translation problems in the shower (God this makes me sound really sad! I guess it's because showers aren't particularly intellectually challenging so your mind is free to think about things like this:-)).

As for translation: I remember having a translation assignment for uni. In this particular assignment (which we had a week to deliver) the phrase "wie bei Hempels unterm Sofa" was used - I asked my then German boyfriend about this, he gave me an explanation and it was only at the end of the week that the translation just occurred to me ("a shambles") - The teacher even read it out in class, but it had taken me almost a whole week to figure it out. Unfortunately, these days I rarely have time for such perfection - to find the perfect translation - because most work has to have been done by yesterday if possible!!!

Take care!

Sarah


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mrippa  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 10:36
English to Italian
Usually by the seaside Sep 27, 2004

The sea usually give me the kind of calm necessary to take difficult decisions. I took some of my wisest decisions (including deciding of being a translator) by the sea. I would recommend a small island in the warm Mediterranean Sea with no tourist in sight, the better if you can find some dolphins swimming around. I can grant you a lot of benefits and plenties of wise decisions if you succeed to be in such a place for at least a few days (or at least you had a great idea in deciding of being there!). But also a terrace on the sea with some seafood and a glass of wine could fit perfectly.

As for translation issues, I remember that for some time I had to work for a big software house in USA where smoking was strictly prohibited. From time to time, very big localization issues arose, my reaction usually was of going out in the courtyard for a 5 minutes smoke, and usually in that 5 minutes, away from the computer screen, I succeeded to find the right solution. Thx to my tobacco addiction.

[Edited at 2004-09-27 18:07]


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Parrot  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 10:36
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Lateral thinking Sep 27, 2004

A change of activity. If you've been working with your mind, chances are you'll resolve your exhaustion and saturation by working with your body, and vice-versa. I learned this from a group dynamics psychiatrist I worked with.

In translation (I worked in-house in a convention centre by the sea, so all the "relax" elements were there) my boss was careful to enforce a mandatory coffee break for translators every two hours, as well as the interpreter cabin shifts. Otherwise, everyone had a tendency to overwork and get saturated (and then we wouldn't meet his numerical targets).

In addition, since we all lived in (the staff hotel was built into the centre) there was an hour's gap between quitting time and reporting back for programmed overtime. We were encouraged to run or do laps in the swimming pool.

This stuck to me, and I still get my best "frame of mind" from the swimming pool or a good aerobic workout.

These days, "breaks" may mean multitasking (including housecleaning, yuck) and the pool is a limited resource. So the tub and the shower have to serve as substitutes


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Patricia Baldwin
United States
Local time: 01:36
Spanish to English
+ ...
Parks..nature..walks..dogs.. Sep 28, 2004

Most inspiring environment is the park in the early morning...right after sunrise when silence still reigns and birds call one another..as I walk my dog..long walks..until we relax under a huge oak tree..sitting close together as we have a pear or an apple for breakfast..I then read a few Bible verses..and get strong and ready for life in the new day.

This sequence invigorates me and has proved to be the best medicine against anxiety and stress.

Do adopt pets..they'll make you happy, healthy and productive.

Cheers from Buenos Aires,
Patricia


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Krokodil
Germany
Local time: 10:36
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Good grief! Sep 28, 2004

[quote]Sarah Downing wrote:

Hi Robin,

..... I also tend to muse translation problems in the shower (God this makes me sound really sad! I guess it's because showers aren't particularly intellectually challenging so your mind is free to think about things like this:-)). ......



Oh no! That makes two of us ...


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RobinB  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:36
German to English
Good things, showers... Sep 28, 2004

"Oh no! That makes two of us ..."

Quite a lot of us, I think..

Can I also point out that under the shower is one of the few places where there are no phones, no e-mails, no faxes. Not even your mobile (well, only once). All you have to worry about is a surprise invasion of Tony Perkins lookalikes.

Robin


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Krokodil
Germany
Local time: 10:36
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Disturbances in the bathroom Sep 28, 2004

RobinB wrote:

"Oh no! That makes two of us ..."

Quite a lot of us, I think..

Can I also point out that under the shower is one of the few places where there are no phones, no e-mails, no faxes. Not even your mobile (well, only once). All you have to worry about is a surprise invasion of Tony Perkins lookalikes.

Robin


_____________

Well, I'll tell you one thing - I don't have a mobile phone, nor do I have a fax at home, so that deals with two of the three disturbing elements at one fell swoop. And as for the e-mail, it's usually only filled to the brim with spam in any case, so I can safely ignore that too ....

Robin (your namesake)


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