Thursday, December 21, 2006

Ivan’s Site of the Week

This week’s winner is Hong Kong Subtitles, a list of (allegedly) real English subtitles to movies shown in Hong Kong.

Greetings, large black person. Let us not forget to form a team up together and go into the country to inflict the pain of our karate feets on some ass of the giant lizard person.
The bullets inside are very hot. Why do I feel so cold?
I am damn unsatisfied to be killed in this way.
Fatty, you with your thick face have hurt my instep.
I got knife scars more than the number of your leg's hair!
Yah-hah, evil spider woman! I have captured you by the short rabbits and can now deliver you violently to your gynecologist for a thorough examination.

Anyone know what the short rabbits are? Do guys have them too? Perhaps we should be getting these films on cable over here, on the Discovery Channel if nowhere else…

A Hong Kong movie star, yesterday. Short rabbits a speciality.


Desargues said...

The German Department at mys chool offers a course on "Feminist and Queer Theory." It supposedly addresses, among other neglected groups, the experiences of translingual lesbian Chicanas, whatever the hell they are (I think I get the lesbian part, though). But this translingual sub-population sounds like someone who may be able to enlighten us on women's short rabbits.

On a different note, fatty faces have often hurt my instep, too. My neighborhood seems to be strewn all over with them.

Desargues said...

Sorry, Ivan, I tried real hard, but I can't really keep a straight face. I am currently dark red in the face with laughter. "...inflict the pain of our karate feets on some ass of the giant lizard person"? I mean, WTF, dude?

SnoopyTheGoon said...

In case you all missed it in this fast-changing blog, here's the address of a site that has made an entertaining study of the portrayal of circumcision in the U.S media:

Thomas Pauli said...

... and I make me menothing younothing out of the powder! (In Germen, I swear to you, this has an actual meaning, but nothing lika women's short rabbits!)

Cantemir said...

Translingual, eh? Hey, Des, are you translingual? I know I am! We should form a support group.

Cantemir said...

Oh, and speaking of 'fatty faces...'

HA HA HA said...

rabits = hares = hairs?

Desargues said...

Damn, 3H, you're good. That must be it.

So it was a woman with short hair. A lesbian. I told you so.

Unless, of course, he meant those other hairs.

R. Sherman said...

Cantemir is correct.

Out here, we also use the phrase, "get one by the short and curlies, i.e. pubic hair."


Desargues said...

I thought Arlington's astute remark sheds definitive light on those rabbits, but it only confounds the issue, like the horizontal, merciless light in mid-December that reveals everyone's blackheads, wrinkles, and baggy eyes.

Now, how would one get from 'hairs' to 'rabbits'? If you've a decent grasp of English (but not a perfect one, mind you), you could mistake 'hairs' for 'hares' -- but not for 'rabbits.' They're not homophones. If you're a Taiwanese who thinks all there is to English is in a dictionary, you could look up whatever word they have in Chinese for 'hairs', but ignorantly end up with something like 'chevelure', or some other synonym. This has been known to happen in other languages quite frequently. Exempli gratia:

Je travaille dans une rive (I work on a waterfront) might be an Englishman's unfortunate rendering of 'I work in a bank,' if his command of French is insecure. Bank, banque, rive. But I can't conceive of any foreigner who'd look up 'hairs' in a Chinese-English dictionary and end up with 'rabbits.'

Care to shed some light on this thorny issue, Mr Hynes?

Colin Campbell said...

I used to enjoy the English mangling in my 10 years of working and travelling in and around Asia. These are just extreme manifestations of a challenging language. I imagine that our attempts at Cantonese Mandarin, would be downright sad, compared to the humour of these examples. Amusing all the same. I mean some of these translations assume a higher level of English than those of the current generation, who apparently will struggle to translate karaoke.