Off topic: Ready to laugh? The freelance translator at home: instructions for use
Thread poster: Christine Ghafoor

Christine Ghafoor
United States
Local time: 18:26
English to French
Aug 17, 2013

Very funny article


564354352 (X)  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:26
Danish to English
+ ...
Too true Aug 18, 2013

Thanks for posting this.

Guilty as charged! icon_biggrin.gif


neilmac  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:26
Spanish to English
+ ...
Spot on! Aug 18, 2013

Some home truths there. Thanks for cheering up my Sunday morningicon_smile.gif)


Łukasz Gos-Furmankiewicz  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:26
English to Polish
+ ...
... Aug 18, 2013

Sometimes the translator will go so far as to leave a business card. You never know.

Never, not even when you crawl to the pub coupla hundred yards away, shall you leave your house without a stash of business cards in your pocket. I've learnt this lesson.

Yes, the freelance translator is extremely curious about others and is especially interested upon meeting someone in a technical profession. Full of new terms! (I told you, the translator is a geek.)

Not really. My days of memorising the vocabulary are over. I would cram six A4 pages full of Ancient Greek for example, but those days are over. They were over before I became a translator. I'm more after entire phrases and collocations, anyway. As far as terms go, I'm often happy to forget them the moment I close the job. They're just data.<

Sometimes, the translator cannot help but share his or her knowledge. If you’re about to spend a relaxing evening with friends, don’t take out the Trivial Pursuit! After the linguist makes five straight wins, no one wants to play with him or her again.

The above and a couple of other brilliance quirks are simply common to very intelligent, highly educated people. Translator is just a job that suits some of them.

The most awesome part is seeing how the translator lights up to explain the importance of the latest grammar rule reform

More like 'teh suck' thereof but anyway.

or to get you to see a Czech film subtitled in German.

No, I disagree. And translators are not necessarily interested in Moldavian verb tenses. Some work six pairs, all into their native language, so it can look like they speak at least most of the major languages, but... never mind. I'm just tired of seeing translators who work to or from one or two languages use 20 flags on their websites and 'hello' or some other basic phrase in 20 different languages. We're more specialised than that. We're likely to have picked up odds and ends of various languages and may speak or at least understand more than we work in, but come on, there are limits.

[Edited at 2013-08-18 14:12 GMT]


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Ready to laugh? The freelance translator at home: instructions for use

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