05 March 2011

Chinglish

We might not live in China, but since we live in a poor country that borders China, we see lots and lots of cheap Chinese imports.  The kinds of things that make what you see at the dollar store look like high-quality items that will last a lifetime. So we also get interesting English translations.  We have some house slippers with some leaping "puams" and "big stomach pot" that apparently should be impressive in its ability to hold a lot of water, but actually doesn't manage to hold more than the little pitcher that fits nicely in the door of the fridge. 

The best one so far was a grater I saw in the bazaar yesterday.  I almost bought it just for the packaging.  The grater was described as "stingy" and it "cuts the flower" and "scratches the silk," but even better, it "scratches garrulously."  Honestly, anyone who thinks "garrulously" should be in any Chinese-English dictionary should be fired. 

I sincerely hope there are websites in China poking fun at the way non-natives word things in Chinese.  Wish I could read those.

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