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skylee

From Paris - 巴黎聖母院

I am currently at the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. I think it is kind and generous of the church to let tourists in and take pictures during mass. Many churches don't allow it. (But then at the same time the church is also selling souvenirs to and making money from tourists.)

Most signs are in multiple languages including Chinese. I have noted an interesting inconsistency. While most Chinese signs are in simplified Chinese, the sign asking for donations for the new bells is in traditional Chinese. Possible reasons: (1) general confusion over the two scripts in the "western" world; (2) the translations were done by different translators; (3) users of traditional Chinese are much more likely to donate money than users of simplified Chinese as the majority of the latter group are from mainland China where there are church problems (although the latter group is rich nowadays).

I think (3) is likely to be the reason.

Another interesting thing is the different names for the Treasury in Japanese, Korean and Chinese - 秘寶、 寶物、珍寶.

skylee

From Seoul

I am now in Seoul. The city is much more tourist-friendly than when I first visited it solo over 10 years ago. There is English on most signs in Seoul now. And there are Chinese characters too. But sometimes I can't help but wonder if the Chinese characters are supposed to be Chinese, or Japanese Kanji or their own Hanja. Sometimes the characters don't look quite right if they are meant to be Chinese.

Look at the first two picturs. There is something very wrong in the first one, at least it is not in line with the common understanding AFAIK. I am not sure if it is intentional. Is the term 正体字(not 正體字) used to refer to simplified characters at all?

The 昇 in the third picture is wrong AFAIK.

I was quite speechless when I saw the sign in the fourth picture. 乳母車?貸與? They can't be right, right?

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PS - additional picture added on 29.4.2014. This is relevant to the fifth reply below.

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skylee

From Nara - 咬人。踢人。頂人。衝撞人。

They are the inappropriate/ wild behaviours of the sacred deers in Nara. I found the notice very amusing and laughed out loud when I first saw it.

The other one was taken in Himeji. The pattern was on an advertising banner. I thought it was romantic.

skylee
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.
skylee
A friend, who is a professional translator (E->C, C->E) sent me this picture, which he had got from a friend of his. His brief remark reads, 傑作,甘拜下風。 This photo reminds me of one I took in Shanghai featuring some "west point" .
Enjoy.
PS - if you like, you can look up what 例 on the menu (as in ¥58/例) means.
skylee
I was at the Queen Mary Hospital (Hong Kong) a few days ago and I took these pictures because I was bored. The Chinese used in the pictures is all right I think, but the English is quite disappointing, especially the name of the teaching department (but most probably it was an editing error - the clerk's fault, I suspect). There is nothing special in the pictures, really. But if you like you can list the mistakes, and translate the one notice that is in Chinese only.
But what is uroflowmetry for?
skylee
I took these pictures in Taipei during the last weekend. Look at them from left to right.
The first sign was under a very tall tree. It caught my eyes because it seemed ridiculous. But then when I looked up and saw the tree it sort of made sense. Why do you think?
I took the second one at the Breeze's food court. It caught my attention because what it said seemed very strange. It seemed to me that besides the two cultures singled out all others were 異國. But this did not sound right (I mean, why is Japan not one of the 異國). I might just be over-interpreting it. Probably they take 異國 to mean all other foreign countries.
I took the third one at the cinema where I watched "Detachment" (excellent film IMHO). I found this notice, especially the part in quotation marks, difficult to understand. Do you know what it is about?

skylee
Two pictures taken yesterday near my home. They are very simple, but Mandarin speakers might not be able to underatand them immediately.
Then another one taken in Causeway Bay. It was a protest. See if you can read what is on the yellow banner.
skylee
I took this photo in Lyon a couple of days ago. If you are interested, you can try to find out the following -
1. What is written on the big character? How are the small characters arranged?
2. What characters (traditional / simplified) are used on the poster?
Side story about a scam - outside the Cathedral Notre Dame in Lyon, different young people asked me to sign on a form with a big UNICEF heading. They did not speak to me, but just held up that signature form to my face. It appeared that they were asking for support for the cause of UNICEF. But then I noticed that their fingers covered the last column of the form, which was for the signers to write down the amount of money they would give. If that was legitimate they would not need to play such a trick. I had been fooled by this trick once many years ago in Paris.
jbradfor
Easy question: if they had one of these in your hometown when you were growing up, how often would you have been there?
Hard question: since I'm sure you read and remember every one of my posts so you know where I went, and using your google / Chinese reading skills, in which city is this currently located? [Actually this might not be so hard, as the first google hit for 醒酒桩 currently gives the answer....]
skylee
I am not going to attach a picture to this post. The main reason is that I don't have one. But please keep reading.
This all happened in Hong Kong. Yesterday a friend wrote to me, telling me that he had seen a rubbish bin labelled 垃圾暨廢物回收箱. He then asked me jokingly what the difference between 垃圾 and 廢物 was.
Now don't use google / baidu yet. Try to (1) think of a difference between 垃圾 and 廢物, however unreasonable.
I managed to first come up with an imagined difference (it was racist so I am not going to repeat it here), and then find the real one.
Now you may use google and / or baidu and (2) find out what the real difference is.
Then another friend joined the discussion and she tried to find a better name for the rubbish bin. Why don't you also (3) suggest a better name for this poor laughing-stock-rubbish-bin?
When you explore this issue, you will come across an article titled "垃圾暨廢物" written by famous lyricist 林夕. Do take a look. It is quite funny. And then consider how you would handle the word "暨" (suggest you take care of this under item (3)).
By now you should have found a picture of this rubbish bin. If you have not, use the link below. Have fun.
skylee
I had not noticed these plaques until today. I think some of the translated names are great, especially 沈弼 (Sandberg), 唐信 (Thompson), 浦偉士 (Purves) and 費樂怡 (Farrell). Sandberg and Purves were Taipans.
PS - 尤德 (Youde) is also pretty good.
skylee
The giant rubber duck parked next to the Harbour City in Kowloon has been a sensation during the past few weeks. And its flattening and removal for maintenance was "heartbreaking". Some friends have sent me different jpegs on the duck, and I am posting two here. I find the ID card very amusing.
skylee
I said to the cashier, "兩個豬仔包". And this is what such small olive/round shaped bread rolls with hard. . skin are called here.
I wonder what it is called in Putonghua, English or in other languages. Anyone wants to share?
The bread is going to be my dinner tonight.
EDIT: New photo of a 豬仔包 sandwich with cava added on 19.1.2013. Some cava has already gone to my head.
skylee
I took this picture today at a supermarket. The first thing that came up in my mind was "Why is this called 沙士?" and it took only seconds for me to remember the reason. This soft drink has brought back some childhood memory.
No when I was little we didn't have soft drinks imported from Australia. But we had a root beer by Watson's called Sarsae, which is still available today. Its Chinese name is 沙示, which I think has to do with the ingredient Sarsaparilla. In Taiwan a similar drink is called 沙士. The wiki has more information. So this is why root beer is called 沙士/示.
Whenever I think of the Sarsae drink I remember the song George Lam (林子祥) sang for its ad. It was a cover version of
, and in place of "sunny" he sang "沙示". I can still sing the song today. Too bad I can't find that commercial online.
skylee
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
I am not sure what has prompted this. But tomorrow is an anniversary of the 1937 七七蘆溝橋事變.
skylee
I took this picture because I found the selling point / slogan 吃不過癮的美味 weird.
I mean I would use 吃(得)不過癮 on something negative, for example when the quantity of food is not enough, or if the food is too expensive, or if I am too full to eat the tasty food, or if there is not enough time to enjoy the food, or if the companions and/or environment are unpleasant. I don't have a positive interpretation for it.
So have I missed something? Like perhaps for trendy people it means that the food is really good? What do you think?
jbradfor
Available for purchase in one of our hotels during our recent trip. I think there's some useful vocabulary here
This is the first hotel I've stayed in for a long time that includes condoms for purchase -- and it wasn't a particularly cheap hotel! I assume it's not part of an anti-AIDS campaign or something like that?
I also appreciate the price being labeled in four languages.
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.
jbradfor
Yet Another Chinese Toilet Sign.
Easy question:
1) What is the Chinese name for the invention that would eliminate the need for this sign?
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