Saturday, September 8, 2012

Had to post this -- a note on a hotel I may stay at in Tokyo, Ryumeikan.  I can never get enough of these rather adorable Japanese attempts at precise translation...

The customer combines the dish and the plate respectively with the dish that is appropriate for the material of in season that centers on the vegetable, the U.S., and the fish according to feelings and the physical condition based on the Japanese food assumed to be good for sokenbi and it is possible to eat."


  1. For some reason, this reminds me of Aunt Shirley saving the Chinese to English instructions of something like a timer or whatever that she had saved and showed to us. These kinds of translation errors always strike me funny. It isn't because I think the people are silly--obviously they are far smarter than I am if they can translate anything. No, it's the funny aspect of language that tickles me.

    I had completely forgotten about your immersion studies trip. How exciting! If you were David Sedaris, you would be trying to give up cigarettes right about now. Too bad you don't smoke.

  2. Yes, and about a year ago I thought I would have done so much Yoga by now that I could actually sit on my knees in any given restaurant and eat dinner. Too bad they will have to sit me in the old western lady chair! Oh it stands now, I will be approximately 29 years older than most of my fellow students, so I might as well be considered an elder!

    Another thing I read last night in a completely unrelated article was in a magazine about sake. The translation from the master brewer was almost completely perfect, but the last line said, "Our sake will sweep your feet off." You're right, trying to sprinkle in idioms in another language takes skill and bravery and I certainly would never even attempt it, so hats off!