Monday, August 9, 2010


As you probably know, there is something called Chinglish. This is when someone tries to translate a Chinese phrase or word into English and for some reason, whether it's just a typo or too literal of a translation, the end result is grammatically incorrect and sometimes just plain funny.

Sometimes I wonder, how can it be possible that someone has spent all that money on a sign for their store and has somehow turned something as common as "fruit" into "fult?" Isn't it easy to check a dictionary or ask someone? But then I realize how many mistakes there would be if for some reason we had to translate a lot of the English here into Chinese.

Anyways, I'm still glad for Chinglish - it really amuses me! Sometimes the phrase just sounds awkward, though it may not be incorrect, such as below. This was found at the World Expo in Shanghai. I think it's telling you not to cut in the lines.

Here are some other ones in which the meaning is slightly obscured by the awkward placement of words.

This next one was found in one of those pamphlets in the hotel room describing all the amenities. It was actually a five-star international hotel. Wow, they do actually think of everything...

This was the evening CCTV news. CCTV is the state-controlled media in China. I was surprised they don't have better editing.

National parks always have interesting signs...

This next sign, which says "Do not touch me, do not kiss me," is actually translated perfectly. I think it's great that the tree is standing up for itself and wants you to respect its comfort zone!

I'm not sure how they were trying to translate this next sign, found at the Southern Great Wall. It's meaning in Chinese is "Do not enter," but I have no idea how they translated that into this garble.

This next one takes a bit more concentration to find. It was located at the entrance of a fast food court. Do you see it?

"Entrance" was translated as "Import." Not in this photo was the exit, which was labeled "Export." I guess this place is a human-feeding factory, where you import hungry beings and hopefully export satisfied ones.

Oh Chinglish, you will never fail to amuse me.

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