relief translating

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the call went out to the bullpen yesterday.  it was still early in the game but the starter was having some difficulties right from the get go.  a relief translator was needed.  one who could go the rest of the game.  i hadn’t even know i was in the bullpen until i was informed by g/f that i was needed to bail out her brother.  he was on the mound and laboring.  no, not giving birth.  well, yeah, sorta but not really.

g/f’s brother’s late wife’s brother is apparently a semi sorta big deal painter/artist in china and japan.  i say apparently because i’ve never seen any of his work.  he got started back in mao’s day doing stuff the red guard enjoyed so i’m probably pretty safe in saying that work has or had a limited audience.  somewhere along the line he got to go to japan where he ventured into other artistic avenues for his oil painting.  the japanese love his stuff and he has become famous and rich by them doing so.  good for him.

so he’s a big deal now in both china and japan.  doing some teaching in one of china’s more impressive universities and advocating art exchange between china and japan.  very nice.  there’s even going to be a book published containing his work.  cool.  now maybe i can see some of his work and see what all the hoopla is about.

ok. so the artist wants the forward in the book to be in english and chinese.  probably japanese as well.  but that’s not germane to this epistle.  so he asked his brother-in-law if he would translate the chinese forward into english.  he said sure.  so the painter guy sends him an email file with the stuff in it. the problem is the chinese has already been translated into machine translation english.  ooofa.  i’ve run into that stuff before.

any the ways g/f’s now poor brother is sorry he opened his mouth.  he was only able to get through the first two paragraphs.  he hasn’t a clue as to what to do with the rest of the deal.    

yeah, enter the relief translator.  g/f says, brother needs help.  will you help?  ok, sure.  another big mouth is heard from.   so i get the file which has what he has already done and the rest of the stuff in it.  of course, i have to redo what he’s already done because it’s written in chinese english which tends to be no where near the real deal.  like any of my stuff is anywhere near the real deal.  but that’s for another time.

i spent a bit over an hour yesterday fixing his stuff.  it sorta works now.  or i hope so.  i looked at the rest of the machine translation shit and no wonder he can’t figure it out.  i can’t either.  it’s just an amazing display of gobblygoop.  i looked and looked at it yesterday till i thought my head would explode.  it almost did.  honest.

told g/f at dinner last night i’d fixed her brother’s stuff and it took a while.  that bad, huh?  yeah.  i can’t do anything else with the rest of it.  i think we need to look at it together friday or saturday and see what is what.  ok.

in all fairness i think it’s the machine english translation of sorta technical oil painting stuff that is the problem.  like using primates for primary, as in colors.  i’m just guessing but i don’t think it could be monkeys.  though i may be wrong.  maybe the guy paints monkeys now or he taught them how to paint.  i really don’t know. 

i looked at the remaining 3 or 4 paragraphs again this morning.  a nice nights sleep and a sorta clear mind made no difference.  i might as well have been trying to figure out the dead sea scrolls. 

over the years i’ve read some bad and/or weird chinese english stuff in ads or menus or just about anywhere else.  i’ve commented to g/f and other relatives that they should run that stuff by me or someone before they stick it out in public for all to see and giggle at.  yeah, you’ve heard it before and you are gonna hear it again.  just be damn careful what you wish for.         

jmh

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