Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Award for Best Chinglish

We interrupt these touristy blog posts to present… The Award for Best Chinglish!

The internet is littered with hilarious examples of the English language gone awry overseas – mainly in Asian countries.  With respect to China, this phenomenon is called “Chinglish”.  Per Wikipedia, “Chinglish is commonly applied to ungrammatical or nonsensical English in Chinese contexts”.  We were told that this stems from the Chinese simply entering Chinese language into an online translation engine and putting down the first thing that pops out – not taking into account some basic grammar, vocabulary, and other differences between the two languages that online engines just aren’t sophisticated enough to pick up and which completely throw the translation out of whack.

As an avid checker of the Chinglish-filled website engrishfunny.failblog.org, I was super stoked to get a first hand look at some of the Chinglish in China.  And what I found was… ungrammatical, nonsensical, and not at all disappointing!  I’ve collected some of the best Chinglish from the trip and included them here for your viewing pleasure.  So, which one wins the Award for Best Chinglish?  I’ll let you decide… and remember:  you can click the pictures to open them up actual size.

When I think of the Great Wall of China, I always think of two things:

1.  Civilized Sightseeing
2.  Safe driving

Personally, I prefer my sightseeing to be uncivilized.  And driving unsafely only adds to the thrill if you ask me.

Beijing was fairly void of Chinglish thanks to a major dechinglishization prior to the Olympics.  But we did pass by this:

Glory mall

And all of the straight people reading this have no idea why this is funny, but that’s fine as long as all the gays (and fag hags) have a snicker.

So, Beijing was disappointing, but once we hit Xi’an, the Chinglish came at us from right and left.  Our hotel was a Chinglish gold mine – just one find after another!

Warm notice
The drinking water needs to heat by the cold water then drinks.


Warm notice
“Careful skid prevention” In order to assure your safety, please draw in the bath curtain when you shower and use the skid resistant turban or skid resistant pad, thanks!

So, moral of the story, ask one of your Middle Eastern friends if you can borrow their turban when you shower, but make sure they have one of those fancy skid resistant turbans!  If not, ask your girlfriend if you can borrow her pad.  Again, inquire about its skid resistance.

Warm notice:
In order to raise the elevator operating efficiency, asks you to choose the pressed key reasonably, thanks!

First of all, I always choose the pressed key reasonably.  Second of all, who is asking me?  Third of all, why are all of the notices warm???  Oh yes… warm = warning!

And then, after choosing the pressed key reasonably – very reasonably – you enter the elevator to find pictures of a bunch of Chinese people (as you would in China) with the following caption beneath:

They are the best waiter in the Guanzhong Hotel. Did you see them before? Are you really happy with theirs service? You could recommend the housekeeping whom you satisfied to us. And also you could fill in opinion book with your opinion and the suggestion. So that we could improve unceasingly. Thanks for monitoring.

Firstly, they aren’t waiters – they are housekeeping staff.  Secondly, while their service was fine, I guarantee that I did not satisfy them as your text is suggesting.  And looking at the pictures of those employees, I can guarantee that I never would satisfy them.  Ever.  But I’ll keep “monitoring” just in case you ever hire a hot one.

Next up:  Hangzhou!  And once again our hotel was full of Chinglish!  This hotel was a strange hotel, however, as it did not have any actual hotel rooms or guest rooms.

- Please don’t panic if a fire is occurring. The advanced dispersing facilities of the fire control system will help you transfer safely.
- Please follow the green direction route to the safety corridors and there safeguards will take you out to the safety region.  The red solid line is the best circuit.
- The red point shows your excellency seat.

That’s right:  no hotel rooms, no guest rooms, no rooms of any sort really.  Just excellency seats!  I’ve always wanted an excellency seat!  Yippee!  Unfortunately, it does not appear that my excellency seat is in the safety region.  Crap.  Well, at least they have those advanced dispersing facilities…

What the hell was I just talking about?  Anyway.  Moving on.

Dear Guest:
When you ente into the washroom. Please take care of the ground if you have a bath. Please use a shower mats or vobe.

Because the ground is fragile and it really needs you to take care of it.  But if you’re not having a bath, you don’t have to take care of the ground.  In fact, if you’re not bathing, you can tell the ground to go fuck itself and that’d be fine.  Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to head to Bed Bath & Beyond.  I’m in dire need of a new vobe.  I hope they have some in stock!

Chinese restaurant

Because, you know, in the small canal town of Wuzhen, I was totally expecting to find a Mexican restaurant.  I’m so glad they clarified.

Now, despite being a cosmopolitan city with many expats from the western world, Shanghai had its fair share of Chinglish too – more than you would expect.  And once again, it was our hotel that was the main culprit.

Joy diffuses the magnificent hall and fragrance swims across chrysanthemun hall, where dclicious daintics, tender feeling, drink to your heart’s content and family ger-together are satisfied fully.

I honestly have not a clue.

Luxurious suite: You may enjoy unusual metropolitan feelings of relaxation and sketch utmost sentiment in the comfortable and elegant suite full of tender feelings and equipped well and arranged reasonably.

Meeting room: It is equipped well and provided with complete functions, where information or messages may be sent or received freely and conveniently, and unlimited business opportunities are revenled to the tullest.

Deluxe double room: You may nourish your spirit and store up vigor for getaway in the next day or several friends have a chat and chat and enjoy romantic fancy by the light of a candle in simple & bright, silent & fragrant room.

Now, I’m usually a sucker for unusual metropolitan feelings and you know that I love a hotel room full of tender feelings – especially if that room is arranged reasonably – but I may have to go with the deluxe double room this time around.  The romantic fancy is just too good to pass up!

And after that romantic fancy, if you have any… remnants… to dispose of, well, I know just where you can stick them:


Two quick questions:  why do you consider it litter and why on earth are you collecting it for recycling???

(Ok, yes.  I understand what this actually means.  But they really ought to have someone less than 35 years of age checking these things.  Do you not understand why this is funny?  If you don't get it, that means you’re likely over 35… or just a very sheltered person… or far more mature than me…)

So, back to my original question:  which one wins the Award for Best Chinglish?  Personally, I think the one with the romantic fancy was the funniest, but you’re entitled to your own opinion even if it’s wrong…  Feel free to comment.  Or not.  There’s isn’t actually an award.  It’s figurative.

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