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This is just a fun translation exercise.
Thread poster: Kevin Yang

Kevin Yang  Identity Verified
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Aug 14, 2006

Hello, Friends

I like to take notes of the words or expressions that made me wonder how to say them in English or in Chinese. I would like to share with you my notes and the definitions based on my understanding. Please feel free to make your corrections if you have a different or better understanding of them. I do not have the perfect translations for them yet, and I challenge you to come up with something that can make the translations as colorful as the source texts. This is just a fun translation exercise. Please feel free to add on the words or expressions that interest you.

1. 支招 [Offer tactics or solutions]

2. 接招 [Respond to tactics or solutions]

3. 过招 [Exchange with counterpart the tactics and counter-tactics]

4. 忽悠 [Pump up someone with flattery remark and try to make the targeted person a true believer of it.]

5. 包二奶 [1. A mistress. This English word is too plain, not as colorful as the Chinese version. / 2. Now it is registered as a brand name of bra]

6. 中央一套 [1. Channel 1 of Chinese Central TV / 2. Now it is registered as a brand name of condom]

7. 草莓族 [Those young people who are so delicate like strawberries. They cannot tolerate any stress or handle any difficulties in life.]

8. 啃老族/食老族 [Those young adults (around 30 y/o) who cannot live an independent life but live with and on their parents. Their old mothers have to cook, wash, clean and pay for food for their old babies.]

9. 月光族 [These people work on jobs, but can spend all the salary before the end of each and every month.]

10. 生白族(生活白痴族) [These people have zero or very little knowledge which are considered as the common knowledge or the basic things that one should know in life.]

11. 烫手山芋 [Hand-burning potatoes. This is different from “hot potatoes”. It is referring to someone who is very valuable, but also causes the employer headaches or problems to have or to keep.]

12. 鸡肋 [Chicken ribs? Comparing with pork ribs or beef ribs, chicken ribs do not have much on the bones to eat, but it might be wasteful if just threw everything away.]

13. Stop doing this shit. [甭干这臭事了。I could not come up with something as colorful as the English version. Mr. Bush was heard telling UK Prime Minister Tony Blair privately that Syria should press the Lebanese militants to "stop doing this shit". The remarks were picked up by closed-circuit TV at the G8 summit which both leaders are attending.]

Kevin

[Edited at 2006-08-15 04:08]


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Last Hermit
Local time: 21:28
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These are close, but no cigar... Aug 14, 2006

1.

2.

3. pk

4. satirize

To be continued...

[quote]Kevin Yang wrote:

Hello, Friends

I like to take notes of the words or expressions that made me wonder how to say them in English or in Chinese. I would like to share with you my notes and the definitions based on my understanding. Please feel free to make your corrections if you have a different or better understanding of them. I do not have the perfect translations for them yet, and I challenge you to come up with something that can make the translations as colorful as the source texts. This is just a fun translation exercise. Please feel free to add on the words or expressions that interest you.

1. 支招 [Offer tactics or solutions]

2. 接招
d to tactics or solutions]

3. 过招 [Exchange with counterpart the tactics and counter-tactics]

4. 忽悠 [Pump up someone with flattery remark and try make the targeted person a true believer of it.]

5. 包二奶 [1. A mistress. This English word is too plain, not as colorful as the Chinese version. / 2. Now it is registered as a brand name of bra]

6. 中央一套 [1. Channel 1 of Chinese Central TV / 2. Now it is registered as a brand name of condom]

7. 草莓组 [Those young people who are so delicate like strawberries. They cannot tolerate any stress or handle any difficulties in life.]

8. 啃老族/食老族 [Those young adults (around 30 y/o) who cannot live an independent life but live with and on their parents. Their old mothers have to cook, wash, clean and pay for food for their old babies.]

9. 月光族 [These people work on jobs, but can spend all the salary before the end of each and every month.]

10. 生白族(生活白痴族) [These people have zero or very little knowledge which are considered as the common knowledge or the basic things that one should know in life.]

11. 烫手山芋 [Hand-burning potatoes. This is different from “hot potatoes”. It is referring to someone who is very valuable, but also causes the employer headaches or problems to have or keep him/her.]

12. 鸡肋 [Chicken ribs? Comparing with pork ribs or beef ribs, chicken ribs do not have much on the bones to eat, but it might be wasteful if just threw everything away.]

13. Stop doing this shit. [甭干这臭事了。I could not come up with something as colorful as the English version. Mr. Bush was heard telling UK Prime Minister Tony Blair privately that Syria should press the Lebanese militants to "stop doing this shit". The remarks were picked up by closed-circuit TV at the G8 summit which both leaders are attending.]

Kevin

[Edited at 2006-08-14 06:32]


[Edited at 2006-08-14 16:30]


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wherestip  Identity Verified
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4-letter words Aug 14, 2006

Kevin Yang wrote:

13. Stop doing this shit. [甭干这臭事了。I could not come up with something as colorful as the English version. Mr. Bush was heard telling UK Prime Minister Tony Blair privately that Syria should press the Lebanese militants to "stop doing this shit". The remarks were picked up by closed-circuit TV at the G8 summit which both leaders are attending.]



Kevin,

IMO "stop doing this shit" basically means 别乱/胡来了. I would suggest 别干这混账的事了 or 别干这见鬼的事了.

There are plenty of swear words in Chinese. The thing is to find an expression that's not obscene yet still considered faux pas in polite society.

As you know , "shit" is a mildly offensive four letter word in today's English language. Most people say it from time to time and don't really consider it that offensive.

Jay Leno joked about the incident on the Tonight Show. He quipped, "the media is making a mountain out of a molehill. Personally, I find the way the President snacking on chips while talking with company more offensive than uttering the word 'shit'". It was pretty funny if one saw the actual clip of George Bush talking to Tony Blair



[Edited at 2006-08-14 18:17]


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pkchan  Identity Verified
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狗屁事 Aug 15, 2006

網上及媒體多譯作﹕狗屁事=shit

『布希:你看,他們需要做的是讓敘利亞和真主黨停止做這些狗屁事(stop doing this shit),該結束了。

  7月17日,正在參加G8聖彼得堡峰會早間餐會的美國總統布希和英國首相布萊爾在不知道話筒開著的情況下,就商議敘利亞援助真主黨襲擊以色列等國際問題說了4分鐘的“悄悄話”。這段顯示兩人對國際事務複雜看法的對話讓峰會現場的所有參加者和媒體聽得清清楚楚。

  對話
  
  真主黨幹“狗屁事”一些領導人太囉嗦

  這段餐會上的對話主要關於以色列和黎巴嫩的衝突。在對話中,嘴裏塞著麵包的布希把真主黨在黎巴嫩所做的事稱為“狗屁事”,批評了聯合國秘書長安南,調侃了布萊爾送給他的Burberry上衣,還嘲笑了某些國際領導人的囉嗦。』


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David Shen  Identity Verified
Local time: 06:28
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a fun translation exercise Aug 15, 2006

Kevin Yang wrote:
Hello, Friends
...Please feel free to add on the words or expressions that interest you...


Let me try to add another version.

1. 支招
Excuse my ignorance but I have never hear of it. (Which makes me think that it is highly necessary for the exchange of local dialects among us Chinese translators because our language is so rich and diversed.)

2. 接招
to ward off attacks

3. 过招
to exchange hands

4. 忽悠
Must be some local dialect from the north, the only definition I know is: "as unstable as a flicking flame of a candle on a windy night"

5. 包二奶
beloved concubine (but not nearly as vivid as the Chinese version, I mean the pun referring to the breasts and the number "two" requires a rounded explanation plus loaded imagination. A word by word translation might also work such as "secured breasts," where in banking terms "secured" means you need to make a deposit to have it, but sounds derogatory.)

6. 中央一套
CCTV premium package

7. 草莓族
the sissy generation

8. 啃老族/食老族
parasites

9. 月光族
One who lives from pay-check to pay-check

10. 生白族(生活白痴族)
hopeless idoits

11. 烫手山芋
a sweet potato too hot to handle / an asset that can be a pain in the ass at the same time

12. 鸡肋
a rewardless undertaking / scrap meat

13. Stop doing this shit. [甭干这臭事了]
Perfect! better than anything else I can think of!


Hi Kevin,

Thanks for posting these interesting phrases. I mean dialects and new terms are the liveliest parts of a language. I only regret that I was not able to travel to as many parts in China as I would have liked to before I left.

I also strongly feel that we do not have to find a perfect English version to make it sound like a standard while there is no absolute equivalent in the English language, especially when the Chinese phrase is vivid and self-exlpanatory. Let the English speakers figure out by themselves what the Chinese term means, if they care enough to find out. And they will. The
phrase "paper tiger" is a good example that needs no further explanation.

Thanks for the fun and challenge your post brings. Waiting to read other versions to come.


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wherestip  Identity Verified
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IMHO 街是骂了, 但意思尚缺 Aug 15, 2006

pkchan wrote:

網上及媒體多譯作﹕狗屁事=shit

『布希:你看,他們需要做的是讓敘利亞和真主黨停止做這些狗屁事(stop doing this shit),該結束了。

  7月17日,正在參加G8聖彼得堡峰會早間餐會的美國總統布希和英國首相布萊爾在不知道話筒開著的情況下,就商議敘利亞援助真主黨襲擊以色列等國際問題說了4分鐘的“悄悄話”。這段顯示兩人對國際事務複雜看法的對話讓峰會現場的所有參加者和媒體聽得清清楚楚。

  對話
  
  真主黨幹“狗屁事”一些領導人太囉嗦

  這段餐會上的對話主要關於以色列和黎巴嫩的衝突。在對話中,嘴裏塞著麵包的布希把真主黨在黎巴嫩所做的事稱為“狗屁事”,批評了聯合國秘書長安南,調侃了布萊爾送給他的Burberry上衣,還嘲笑了某些國際領導人的囉嗦。』


pk,

这种译法骂人的语调表达得不错, 但我觉得"狗屁事"、 "屁事" 一般用来形容 something trifling and insignificant, which in this instance is not the case. (狗)屁事也要向上汇报 is a good example of referring to something trivial. Anyway, IMHO what's out there sometimes is not very accurate, such as the translation of "humbled" into "发抖".

Like any language, there are plenty of choices for expletives in Chinese. So in my opinion the translation of this phrase, number one is to get the President's meaning right, only then should one try to convey the colorfulness of the language used.

Actually, I agree with Jay Leno (although he was only joking). What Bush said was expressive and appropriate to the situation. It only goes to show that he is plain-spoken in private conversations.



[Edited at 2006-08-15 12:22]


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David Shen  Identity Verified
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Hello Aug 15, 2006

好久没见老傅上论坛了,他是否在忙本坛地化,要么在埋头译"Emperor Kangxi"?

相见亦无事,不来忽忆君。


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ysun  Identity Verified
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对布什而言这是小意思 Aug 15, 2006

wherestip wrote:
Actually, I agree with Jay Leno (although he was only joking). What Bush said was expressive and appropriate to the situation. It only goes to show that he is plain-spoken in private conversations.


布什还经常骂SOB,就像蒋中正喜欢骂“娘希匹”一样。不过“娘希匹”倒也蛮能体现当年蒋中正的性格和心情的。不知以前有关小说里是怎么翻译的?


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Kevin Yang  Identity Verified
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Thank you for having brain storms and coming up with wonderful suggestions! Aug 15, 2006

Hello, wherestip, David, Last Hermit and PK,

Thank you for having brain storms and coming up with wonderful suggestions! I believe such exercise can keep us sharp in translation. As you all can see here, it does take some thoughts to make the translations reflect well the style, color and strength of the source texts. The most challenging part, I think, is how to make our translation more natural to the native readers and get the point crossed well.

Yes, the first 4 entries are all from the northern dialect, but they got so popular nowadays, thank to TV, film and other news media. I think 忽悠 is used as a verb. I think it is from 忽忽悠悠. It depicts a state of mind or sensation of being drunk and feeling like stepping on the clouds. One can get that way, too, when other people keep throwing flattery remarks at him. Such remarks are quite possibly exaggerated, just for the sake of making the listener felt good.

I thought of “concubine” as a translation for 包二奶. I did not use it because I thought a concubine is mostly living under the same roof of the husband. I might be wrong about this. 包二奶 is different. She might wish to marry this married man eventually, but she is always being secretly placed in a house or apartment away from this married man’s home, and of course, all her housing and living expenses are paid by this married man, with the hope of getting her exclusive services. I heard from a Chinese lady here who just visited her hometown Wenzhou (Zhejiang). She noticed the 包二奶 in Wenzhou often have a couple of other men to rotate secretly during her master is not visiting. The lonesomeness must be the hardest thing to deal with for a 包二奶. I think the word 包 here has the same usage as in 包工, 包车, 包厢, 包月, 包银. I wonder if we can introduce a new word into English, by simply using Pinyin “Bao’ernai” for 包二奶.

Yes, several of our peers have been busy with the translation in Chinese localization project of ProZ.com. This project is moving along smoothly. We are trying to complete the draft translation by end of August. I will look for your input and revision suggestions in our testing run of this website.

Kevin


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Kevin Yang  Identity Verified
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何谓“娘希匹”? Aug 15, 2006

Yueyin Sun wrote:

布什还经常骂SOB,就像蒋中正喜欢骂“娘希匹”一样。不过“娘希匹”倒也蛮能体现当年蒋中正的性格和心情的。不知以前有关小说里是怎么翻译的?


Yueyin,

换“玉照”了!朦胧了点儿,隐约间还能看出俊朗。

请问,何谓“娘希匹”?如果太难听,就别翻译了,反正是骂人的。这可能是浙江的方言吧?

Kevin


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ysun  Identity Verified
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是浙江方言 Aug 15, 2006

Kevin Yang wrote:

Yueyin Sun wrote:

布什还经常骂SOB,就像蒋中正喜欢骂“娘希匹”一样。不过“娘希匹”倒也蛮能体现当年蒋中正的性格和心情的。不知以前有关小说里是怎么翻译的?


Yueyin,

换“玉照”了!朦胧了点儿,隐约间还能看出俊朗。

请问,何谓“娘希匹”?如果太难听,就别翻译了,反正是骂人的。这可能是浙江的方言吧?

Kevin


Kevin,

“玉照”跟你的明星照还是没法比。:D

“娘希匹”是浙江方言,是骂人的,大概是“该死的”的意思。江浙一带的人把“死”发成接近于“希”的音。蒋委员长心情不好,所以这“三字经”总挂在嘴边。不知翻译人翻译蒋委员长骂人的话时如何才能做到“信、达、雅”?

我想问你个问题,据说“胡同”二字是出自蒙古语,不知蒙古语里原意是指什么?


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Kevin Yang  Identity Verified
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词源是个很有趣的话题。 Aug 15, 2006

Yueyin Sun wrote:

“玉照”跟你的明星照还是没法比。:D

我想问你个问题,据说“胡同”二字是出自蒙古语,不知蒙古语里原意是指什么?


Yueyin,

你可别忽悠我了!“青春的鸟儿一去不回还”是对我的真实写照。;-)

我小的时候,也曾问过老爸关于“胡同”二字的由来。我记得他也没给出个准确的答案。我的蒙语水平整个一个不及格,只能靠“我还是蒙古高原的孩子”来安慰自己内心的缺憾。我父亲的解释是,胡同是汉化的发音,可能源于蒙语“hot”(浩特)。蒙语“浩特”的意思就是“定居点”,即英文的settlement。有人把"浩特"解释成“村庄”,我不太同意。因为村子一般是固定的,可以上百年不动地方,而浩特(settlement)是根据水草的情况而经常搬迁的。

词源是个很有趣的话题。我们可以多聊聊。来美国后,听美国人说“I was gongho about it”,一时是丈二和尚摸不着腰,不知所云。后来发现,这是把中国字”共和“二字给英文化了。我想一定有很多中国人不知道这个情况。我现在还不确定美国对此词的理解是否还和中文原意相同,可能美国人把此词用成了”全力支持;合心协力“之类的意思了。

Kevin


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chica nueva
Local time: 02:28
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关于'工合' ... gung ho (我的理解...) Aug 15, 2006

Kevin Yang wrote:

Yueyin,

你可别忽悠我了!“青春的鸟儿一去不回还”是对我的真实写照。;-)

我小的时候,也曾问过老爸关于“胡同”二字的由来。我记得他也没给出个准确的答案。我的蒙语水平整个一个不及格,只能靠“我还是蒙古高原的孩子”来安慰自己内心的缺憾。我父亲的解释是,胡同是汉化的发音,可能源于蒙语“hot”(浩特)。蒙语“浩特”的意思就是“定居点”,即英文的settlement。有人把"浩特"解释成“村庄”,我不太同意。因为村子一般是固定的,可以上百年不动地方,而浩特(settlement)是根据水草的情况而经常搬迁的。

词源是个很有趣的话题。我们可以多聊聊。来美国后,听美国人说“I was gongho about it”,一时是丈二和尚摸不着腰,不知所云。后来发现,这是把中国字”共和“二字给英文化了。我想一定有很多中国人不知道这个情况。我现在还不确定美国对此词的理解是否还和中文原意相同,可能美国人把此词用成了”全力支持;合心协力“之类的意思了。

Kevin


路易·艾黎- Wikipedia - [ Translate this page ]他的名字是由他没有孩子的姑母起的,他的姑母非常欣赏当地毛利人运动领袖路易玛尼阿波 托,他从小在一种艰苦劳动、遵守纪律、 ... 回国和访问欧洲、美国,当年返回中国后开始 组织“工业合作社”(工合组织),后来“工合“(Gung Ho)这个词已经被英语所吸收。 ...
zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/路易·艾黎 - 22k - Cached - Similar pages


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Kevin Yang  Identity Verified
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应该是”工合“。 Aug 15, 2006

Lesley McLachlan wrote:


路易·艾黎- Wikipedia - [ Translate this page ]他的名字是由他没有孩子的姑母起的,他的姑母非常欣赏当地毛利人运动领袖路易玛尼阿波 托,他从小在一种艰苦劳动、遵守纪律、 ... 回国和访问欧洲、美国,当年返回中国后开始 组织“工业合作社”(工合组织),后来“工合“(Gung Ho)这个词已经被英语所吸收。 ...
zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/路易·艾黎 - 22k - Cached - Similar pages


Lesley,

谢谢你的纠正。应该是”工合“。我上面出了笔误。

Kevin


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xxxlingua franc
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没错,宁波方言。老蒋原籍浙江奉化。 Aug 15, 2006

“娘希匹”是浙江方言

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