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Signese

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Contributors to this blog

  • roddy 143
  • anonymoose 85
  • skylee 61
  • abcdefg 10
  • Publius 8
  • mungouk 8
  • StChris 8
  • Tomsima 6
  • jbradfor 5
  • xiaocai 4
  • somethingfunny 4
  • ChTTay 3
  • DrWatson 2
  • Flying Pigeon 2
  • stapler 2
  • js6426 1
  • murrayjames 1

About this blog

Entries in this blog

skylee

The Hairdresser

I took this picture a couple of weeks ago in Milan. The business of the salon, which was next to an exit of the Porta Romana subway station, was really good. And you know why I took the picture, don't you?

skylee

Tram

You know where this place is, don't you?

When I first saw this tram I was quite surprised as the Chinese name was right on the first car. It took me a few attempts to take this picture, as I guess there is only one like this and I am not the kind who has a camera in hand ready to take pictures all the time. As far as I know there are different Chinese versions of the city's name. But if this name is good enough for the city it is good enough for me. (But I can't explain why I feel differently about Seoul's Chinese name.)

An irrelevant question - why do Asian (Japanese, Hong Kong, Taiwan) young people (or younger people) like to take pictures of the food they order with sophisticated big cameras in restaurants? Is it just to show off their cameras?

skylee

The point is?

I am staying in a cheap hotel in Hongkou, Shanghai as a friend is staying here. The hotel works hard to be a good hotel and it is quite nice really. I took this picture at the breakfast yesterday morning. I think this is a bit sad, but of course it is funny too.

skylee

Immortality

I walked past the City Hall in Central (Hong Kong) today and saw this inscription again. The picture was taken years ago. See if you can figure out what it means.

I wrote about this (twice!) in my own blog (in Chinese). If you are interested, take a look at this and this.

PS - Pictures of the English version and the bronze gates added on 9 April 2011.

skylee

Two random pictures ...

and they are in Cantonese.

The one with the apple is actually part of the poster of the movie "Bad Teacher". The other one was taken amongst the wine racks of a Hong Kong supermarket.

Enjoy.

skylee

Cents

I took this picture at the cashier of a small restaurant tonight.

If you like, you can -

i) explain what it is;

ii) consider why the shop does this;

iii) comment on the quality of the picture. :mrgreen:

roddy

Picture this: Paris. A library. 2011

Everyone's favourite Sound of Music song Edelweis has come across these signs in a library. Maybe in Paris, I can't remember. But that's not the point.

1) Can you translate the two signs?

2) Does the grammar seem ok to you?

3) And more difficultly - what's that scrawled note say?

4) And getting silly now - what is the significance of the number 19.25?

skylee

I just want to show the photos about Roosevelt the metro station and the sign about Zhou close to Place d'Italie.

As to Lafayette (edit - the department store, not the general), please find out how the Traditional Chinese version of its store guide is different from the other versions.

skylee

佔領匯豐

I didn't even know this was happening.

I took these pictures today at the street level of the HSBC headquarters building in Central, Hong Kong. If you like you can read the Chinese characters in the pictures.

Follow-up - The occupation has been cleared. A photo of HSBC's notice (the last photo) is attached.

skylee

Counter

I took this photo at the HK Central Library this afternoon. If you like, you can try to identify what is wrong with the words used.

roddy

Signese Revival 11

One fairly random photo of Chinese characters in action, per week, until sometime in 2018. And perhaps longer if I'm encouraged. Those who want to contribute their own random photos of Chinese characters are welcome, just get in touch and I'll add you to the contributor list so you can post directly, from computer or phone.

 

Now is it just me, or is that a nicely written sign?

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roddy

Kiroran

A submission from @DrWatson from his friendly neighbourhood restaurant. Hands up if you think we should send him back to get a photo of the rest of the menu. 

 

Quiz: The Chinese name doesn't match up with the English one. Who or what was it named after? Where does Kiroran come into it?

 

And if you already know the answer, don't post ;-)

 

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roddy

Restaurant sign

Here's a contribution from @stapler - a bright and happy sign outside a local restaurant in... not sure where, maybe stapler will tell us. Or maybe he's busy trying to figure out what 菜饭 and 常米 are.

 

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js6426

What does it REALLY mean to love China?

I had to pop to the international student center at uni to sort some visa stuff, and couldn't resist getting some snaps of this sign. I haven't even attempted to decipher anything that's on there, but there's plenty on there to keep one busy, especially if you are looking to perfect your 'reading handwriting' skills! I'd love to hear feedback on what people have written (there's not a lot on there I can read, other than the middle hah)!

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Tomsima

In a teahouse in Dali

I like my tea, and went on a bit of a tea hunting expedition a few months back. Here's a photo from a small teahouse in Dali, Yunnan, which I thought was interesting. the manager was a really interesting guy, and it was definitely my favorite teahouse we visited in Yunnan.

 

Naturally, as an Englishman in a Chinese tea shop, the topic of the opium wars eventually came around, which is always slightly awkward and seems to often result in my somewhat forced comical apology for what happened with 圓明園 . this time was different however: after my voluntary push into the opium wars topic (thinking i was avoiding the elephant in the room), the manager smiled, and silently pointed at the sign behind me. We both laughed, and went back to our tea. There was a certain affinity in that moment that I have found quite rare while living in middle of nowhere China, where you are reminded every day you are an 'outsider'.

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StChris

Anyone who has spent any time in China will have noticed the often nonsensical, and sometimes funny, things written in English on young peoples' clothes. To be fair, at least Chinese people have the sense to just have it printed on their clothes, rather than permanently tattooed on their bodies, as many westerners do with Chinese characters. After 2 years in China, I thought I could no longer be shocked by any crazy English T-shirts or jackets, but then I saw this:

 

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There was just something about the choice of words and the big, red lettering that stunned me for a moment. I personally would be down with 1.5 of the 3 things the club stands for, and was tempted to ask for more info but, well, you know the rules...

roddy

Best and cheap

The main menu is entirely English and standard cafe burgers and breakfasts. Not been in yet, but maybe next time I'm passing. 

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roddy

Water Rules

Another user-contributed photo this time, from Dean A. Swanson.

This was snapped from the 919 bus on the outskirts of Beijing suburb Shunyi. Dean has helpfully provided a few questions for you to consider, thus saving me the bother.

If anyone else has anything they want to contribute, attach it to a private message or email ([email protected]) and hopefully we'll be able to use it. Regular contributors can, if they want, be set up to post directly to the blog.

With no further ado:

  1. Why is this river important?
  2. What are the three activities listed?
  3. Are you allowed to do them?

roddy

Domestic Help

This is a poster advertising a range of 家政 or 'home management' services - cleaners, cooks, carers and so on. I've attached a couple of extra larger images of it as I think the chunky text and somewhat blurry photo could present problems for anyone needing to look anything up by stroke order.

It's interesting to see which services are offered and how much they cost. Bear in mind that this is not what the actual worker gets paid, the agency will be taking a cut.

Today's questions, in more or less what I think is order of difficulty.

1) Who costs more to look after, the elderly or the ill?

2) You have 1000Y. Can you afford to have your cat looked after for a week and employ a cook for a month?

3) For a non-leap year February you want to have your kids taken to and from school, your chihuahua washed weekly, and someone to come in for two hours a day Monday to Friday to help around the house. How much will it cost?

4) Which, if any, of these services are for pregnant women?

5) How much would you want paid to offer the 挤肛门线 service?

You can use spoiler tags

[spoiler] text here [/spoiler]

to hide your answers, and if you don't want to read the discussion before answering, close your eyes and scroll down . . .

roddy

Yongan Lu Scene

Another user-contributed photo today, from edelweis, bring us an idyllic scene from Yong'an Lu in Changping, Beijing (I'm assuming that's the 永安路 it is, correct me if incorrect.)

If you'd like a couple of questions to engage with . .

a) What are your dining options on this particular stretch of thoroughfare, and what will you personally be choosing?

B) You need to get your mobile phone fixed, book a train ticket, and buy a pair of shoes. Can you do this all here?

roddy

Fishy Business

Another contribution from our aquatic correspondent, Dean A Swanson, who earlier provided us with this contribution and has now brought us more riverside rules.

So your questions, again provided by Dean, are:

1) There's something fishy going on here. Actually, a couple of things. What are they?

2) Which of the two things is considered "good"; which is considered "bad"? Why?

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roddy

Souvenir What?

From a local shop.

1) What World Cup memorabilia is on sale?

2) Which character did I misread as 罩 when first walking past and what did I think was for sale as a consequence?

3) For extra credit, figure out what a 米米卡 is. I have no idea.

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