Books Read in 2007
14 August 2007
I think it will come as a surprise to no one that I am very good at finding ways to waste time. I don't really need any help with that little project. I do very well all by myself, but this morning I confess to having received much inspiration from San Francisco Chronicle columnist, Jon Carroll.
Carroll's column mentions a web site known simply as "apparel" where he found some marvelous descriptions for its sale items, specifically for sunglasses. I'll let you read the ones he found in his column. Here are a couple that I thought interesting. For "Valentino Sunglasses with rhinestones, the description reads:
I'm not exactly sure what sunglasses have to do with Christian ministry, unless these originally were ordered for Jim Jones.
Another brand of sunglasses (Chanel 6006) is described as:
Maybe they can help me figure out that math problem about the two trains.
Some Marc Jacobs brand sunglasses are described as:
Some socks bore the description:
At last someone who admits that some of the stuff is "unintelligible" and I really want to know what a men's leotard with a fly-front gap is. Sounds like something you'd wear at a gay bath house. (And what good are open toed socks anyway?)
I think we can state with some certainty that English is not the the native language of the writer of these descriptions!
However, that's not the big time waster. A person commented in Carroll's guestbook that it sounded like the original description had been run through a site called "Lost in Translation." It's a variation on the old game where you whisper something to someone and the comment makes it around the room and by the time it gets back to you it's hardly recognizable as the message you sent originally. In this case, you enter a phrase and it translates it into five languages and back into English after each translation. (They call it "Babelizing.")
I once heard that there was a big international incident because the phrase "out of sight, out of mind" got translated as "invisible idiot," so I thought I'd see what would happen if I "babelized" that phrase. I didn't get "invisible idiot," but after going through French, German, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish, what I ended up with was "of the Vista of the alcohol it is."
Well, you can just bet that I started thinking of all sorts of wonderful phrases to try to Babelize.
I thought I'd try some Bush phrases and see if I could make sense of them, but I'm afraid I broke the site. My monitor began whirling around and green gunk began pouring out of it.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
This is entry #2695