LINGUIST List 4.706

Tue 14 Sep 1993

Disc: Last posting: cross-cultural fun

Editor for this issue: <>


Directory

  1. Bas van Bakel, Re: 4.683 More cross-cultural fun
  2. Dawn K Darnell, Creative English
  3. , Re: 4.682 Cross-cultural fun
  4. "don l. f. nilsen", Re: 4.682 Cross-cultural fun
  5. , Fun
  6. Jane A. Edwards, Re: 4.682 Cross-cultural fun
  7. , 4.684 Still more cross-cultural fun
  8. MARC PICARD, WANCO
  9. BEN PETRE, Re: 4.684 Still more cross-cultural fun
  10. , MORE CROSS-CULTURAL FUN
  11. , Re: 4.666 More fun: inappropriate English
  12. "Anne M Loring-1", Re: 4.684 Still more cross-cultural fun

Message 1: Re: 4.683 More cross-cultural fun

Date: Fri, 10 Sep 93 11:23:43 MERe: 4.683 More cross-cultural fun
From: Bas van Bakel <U250004HNYKUN11.bitnet>
Subject: Re: 4.683 More cross-cultural fun

Here's an example of another cross-cultural joke. I read this one in
an old joke-book: Two German tourists went to Paris, France, and they
decided to speak English because their French wasn't good enough and
talking German in France would not make them very popular. So they
went to a bar and called the waiter. "Two martinis, please", said
the first in perfect English. "Certainly sir," the waiter replied,
"Would you like dry martinis?". And then the other bellowed:
"Nein, zwei!" ("dry" sounds like German "drei" (3). "zwei" is German
for 2).

Bas
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Message 2: Creative English

Date: Fri, 10 Sep 93 9:47:10 EDTCreative English
From: Dawn K Darnell <kdarnellmagnus.acs.ohio-state.edu>
Subject: Creative English

 While living in rural Japan several years ago, I came across all sorts of
wonderful "Japlish" phrases which still tickle me today (although some are a
bit crass). A sweatshirt on prominent display in a gift shop on a Gifu side
street proudly proclaimed: EAT YOUR PEANUTS OUT OF MY SHIT . Somewhat less
direct is one from my "hometown" of Takayama which bore the slogan: Happy
Heart Studio Wood Song (a direct translation of some kanji compound, I
wonder?). But the very best (which I did not personally see, but read
about in a book on "Japanese English") involves a banner hung outside a small
town outside of Tokyo after WWII during the U.S. presidential primary. It
said: WE PLAY FOR MACARTHUR'S ERECTION.
 Hope I didn't offend... ;-)

Kim Darnell, THE Ohio State University (can anyone explain this THE?)
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Message 3: Re: 4.682 Cross-cultural fun

Date: 10 Sep 1993 12:08:52GMT
From: <lynam90ollamh.ucd.ie>
Subject: Re: 4.682 Cross-cultural fun

On a visit to Ghent, Belgium, a few years ago, I was surprised to
find that the locals play?/carry out?/perform? "Brushing of
Watergolf" in hairdressing salons!!

Clodagh Lynam
Dublin
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Message 4: Re: 4.682 Cross-cultural fun

Date: Fri, 10 Sep 1993 13:58:08 Re: 4.682 Cross-cultural fun
From: "don l. f. nilsen" <ATDFNasuvm.inre.asu.edu>
Subject: Re: 4.682 Cross-cultural fun

 The Cafeteria at the University of Colorado in Boulder is called
the "Alfred E. Packer" cafeteria. Packer was a cannibal who had
eaten a number of his comrades one winter trying to survive a harsh
winter in Donner's Pass. The University of Colorado bookstore sells
T-shirts saying "Keep your eyes on your thighs." There used to be
a sign in the cafeteria with the name "Alfred E. Packer Cafeteria,"
but it was removed because it was felt to be "in bad taste."
 Oooooops. In order to make this message cross-cultural, consider
Jack Kennedy's gaffe when he was in Berlin. What he meant to say was
"Ich bin Berliner." What he said was "Ich bin ein Berliner." With
the indefinite article, "Berliner" means "jelly donut."

{^_^}
Don L. F. Nilsen |\/\/\/||
<ATDFNASUACAD.BITNET>, (602) 965-7592 | |
Executive Secretary | |
International Society for Humor Studies | (o)(o)
English Department | _)
Arizona State University | ,____|
Tempe, AZ 85287-0302 | /
 |_____\
 | Anon \
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Message 5: Fun

Date: Fri, 10 Sep 1993 17:09:02 Fun
From: <JAYMERICHGUVAX.bitnet>
Subject: Fun

(For non-speakers of Peninsular Spanish, "rape" = angler -- the fish).

In a bilingual menu in Spain:

 RAPE A LA MARINERA : RAPE, SAILOR STYLE.

I wonder how many English speakers actually ordered the dish, and what
exactly they were expecting!
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Message 6: Re: 4.682 Cross-cultural fun

Date: Fri, 10 Sep 93 21:40:02 -0Re: 4.682 Cross-cultural fun
From: Jane A. Edwards <edwardscogsci.Berkeley.EDU>
Subject: Re: 4.682 Cross-cultural fun

In the Alps I noticed an English borrowing that didn't turn out quite
as planned: On the menu board in front of the restaurant it announced
the daily special as "Tageshit," or "hit of the day."
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Message 7: 4.684 Still more cross-cultural fun

Date: Fri, 10 Sep 1993 13:09 -054.684 Still more cross-cultural fun
From: <mike.maxwellSIL.ORG>
Subject: 4.684 Still more cross-cultural fun

 After seeing Don Nilson's comment about the backwards spelling of
 English in Afghanistan, I have to put in my two dollars. When our ship
 was anchored out in Hong Kong, I used to see an interesting name on the
 bow of a ship tied up to the pier that we came in next to in our
 liberty boat: "1*N DRAPOEL" (the "*" is a raised "o", which I took for
 a degree mark). One day as we were walking back to the pier, I noticed
 the ship's name on the opposite bow: "LEOPARD No 1".
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Message 8: WANCO

Date: Fri, 10 Sep 1993 09:45:44 WANCO
From: MARC PICARD <PICARDVax2.Concordia.CA>
Subject: WANCO

 My impression is that Harry Bego's joke about WANCO and DOE HET ZELF
went over the head of most North Americans since TO WANK is simply not used
here. Maybe they'll get it after they've heard about the Chinese couple who
split up: she went back to Peking, and he went back to Wanking.
M. Picard
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Message 9: Re: 4.684 Still more cross-cultural fun

Date: Fri, 10 Sep 1993 22:32:23 Re: 4.684 Still more cross-cultural fun
From: BEN PETRE <HOBPETREhalls1.cc.monash.edu.au>
Subject: Re: 4.684 Still more cross-cultural fun

Below is an accurate transcription of the label on the back of a pair
of jeans I bought in Greece last year:

 __________
 JEAN'S
 ----------
 FINE GOODS
 WE MAKE NEW EVER STINGLY
 QUALITY FEANE AUTHENTIC JEANS
 FOR ALL MODERN *(LOGO)* GET IMPORTANS
 PROFFESSION HENPOSITION FIT
 AND OFFERING AUTHENTIC LOOK
 BASIC GOOD TAPER FROM
 LOOKING HIGH TO ANKLE
 HAVE FUN
 __________________
 WILD WEST (R)
 ------------------
 The *logo* features what I can only describe as a Modern Greek
Chimera - a cross between a calf, a dog and an elephant!
Any ideas as to what some of the more incongruous "English" words
mean?

Ben Petre <hobpetrehalls1.cc.monash.edu.au>
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Message 10: MORE CROSS-CULTURAL FUN

Date: Fri, 10 Sep 93 16:24:23 EDMORE CROSS-CULTURAL FUN
From: <ADMSRdgbt.banyan.doc.ca>
Subject: MORE CROSS-CULTURAL FUN

Read on a sign in a small in Ontario (Canada) town:

 NO TRESPASSING - TREPAS INTERDIT

Literally translated, the French reads: Death Prohibited !
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Message 11: Re: 4.666 More fun: inappropriate English

Date: Sat, 11 Sep 1993 12:42:27 Re: 4.666 More fun: inappropriate English
From: <MMEYERSMSUS1.MSUS.EDU>
Subject: Re: 4.666 More fun: inappropriate English

Sign in a San Francisco Chinatown window a few years ago: Bilingual helps
wanted.
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Message 12: Re: 4.684 Still more cross-cultural fun

Date: Thu, 9 Sep 1993 22:13:38 -Re: 4.684 Still more cross-cultural fun
From: "Anne M Loring-1" <loringmaroon.tc.umn.edu>
Subject: Re: 4.684 Still more cross-cultural fun

On the subject of weird English appearing on clothing, etc., from Japan,
etc., I find myself wondering about the decorative or scene-enhancing
writing found, say, in movies like "Aladdin" (the recent Disney version).
 Does the stuff that looks like Arabic script really say anything? Is
there someone out there who reads Arabic, Japanese, Chinese, other
languages written in a variety of writing systems, who's noticed this
writing used decoratively? Does it say anything?
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