Friday, June 20, 2008

I Really Respect The English In Japan

I have always made it clear that going to the English lessons as one of the subjects here is something I loathe so much that I would prefer to be assigned with a Bahasa Indonesia class instead. Just as it seems that I have to endure another year of English lesson this year, I got exempted from attending English classes, all because I have passed the TOIEC exam - the English test that is used by the Japanese to measure you level of proficiency in the language. I am not trying to boast myself, but everybody knows very well on how low the standard of the test is. The full mark is 990 and an average Japanese student will score around 400 marks. That is why when they are told that our scores are over 900, they will give us that "OMG!-YOU-ARE-A-GOD-FOR-GOODNESS-SAKE!!" expression. Well, just pure Japanese style for having the tendency of over-doing in their attitude most of the time.
To be truthful, that has little to do with this entry because the main thing I will be highlighting here are a few encounters with how creative the Japanese can be when it comes to translating something into English from their mother tongue. Unfortunately as it seemed to be, they just screwed everything up in the end. What you would see from this point onwards is a compilation of powderful Engrish I got to witness during my last spring vacation.
As a starter, take this signboard that I saw in Toshogu Shrine in Nikko. They are trying to deter people from smoking within that area, but they didn't get it that correctly.
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What is "smokig"? Some Finnish language maybe.
Since it is just a starter, I will be nice here. I will take that as a spelling error but still, they should have at least taken the initiative to correct it instead of confusing the Japanese kids on the English version.
Soon, it slowly got worse.

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This is ambiguous because it could be either a spelling error, or the person who was responsible to put up this notice was sleeping all the way during his English grammar lesson. My bet would be for the latter, and I think he likes the letter "E" very much.
However, I reserved the best for the last.
Earlier of my trip, when I was walking around Shibuya looking for the Indian buffet restaurant, I came across one restaurant, although this one doesn't offer buffet service. The signboard looked just as appealing as how the name suggests itself.
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Spicy curry, but I can bet that it will never go any near to our real spicy curry.
Unfortunately, Indeira Curry House had yet to open business when I was there. So I decided to only take a look at the menu pasted on the glass of the door. That was the very moment that I burst out laughing out of a sudden. But luckily enough for me, nobody was looking at me thinking that this dude is better off to be admitted to a psychiatric ward immediately.
How can I not laugh when they show you a menu like this?
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Dei, use the spelling checker next time lah!
I understand if they wish to emphasise on how nice their food is, which explains why they came out with a new adjective to describe their "deliciouse" curry. I reckon that new word is waiting to be added into Bombay Dictionary (Revised Edition). One more thing is that I could not make out is what they meant by "stile". Certainly, it is surely not to be the sets of steps that help people climb over fences and gates, which I can't relate with Japanese curry at all. I suppose it should be spelled as "style".
I find their new words are far more interesting than the grammar errors on the menu. If there is an award for the most hilarious new word on that menu, it will surely go to this one.
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Bejitable nowadays are so damn expensive - ¥950
I think this restaurant must be using some high-biotech manufactured vegetables that have to be spelled that way. It is highly unlikely even for a standard one primary student to make such a bizarre error. I would just like to offer my full respect to the boss of this restaurant. You are a real bejitable lor.
Scroll a little bit down the menu and the nightmare continued.
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They have coleslow, but don't have mess poteto =\
Here, we have two different salads - one that will turn cold slowly, while the other will pose while saying "cheez" to you when you are to put them into your mouth. Sounds not bad, isn't it? That aside, they modified the usual tandori chicken using chickens that are served with its beak still intact. I just have to try this restaurant one day and see if I will transform into a Donald Duck.
In the end of the day, I laughed so hard at the menu that it made my stomach felt full without even stepping my foot into the restaurant.


Kae Vin said...

I wanna eat veji-table! or beji-table?

lol :D

Anonymous said...

TOEIC I think is for whole world.
just depends on countries if they think it's important..

Seizhin said...

The one I've seen on my trip to China are similar to this.
Maybe we all have the same problem.

Anonymous said...

see... thats the reason why jap people are so afraid of foreign people... you la... go laugh at their english... at least they had the guts to speak...

but anyway... sigh.. its a sad story behind all these errors la... so... be neutral la...

Wee Kien said...

i cn understand why their eng is so lousy.If see from history aspect, japan is not like malaysia which used to be the one of the colony of British.Then from education part, they only study english starting from secondary school.English also is not compulsory for them to study.Then is like they can choose to study other foreign language like French etc.Not like malaysia only study english. So can't blame them for lousy english coz i think other countries like France..etc, their english is also not that gud coz they dun hv the history background like us.So feel lucky to be a malaysian.

pinksterz said...

yew sho bed. teesink deh japanis laik deez.

Anonymous said...

i founf this 1 very funny,how come they all got 2 version of spelling for curry=cuurry and cuury
weird enuf,may be pass the exam by memorizing kakkoumon kana??

calvin said...

@ specialhuman:
it's fuji-chair xD

calvin said...

@ ns29:
yes, you got that right ;)
although the japanese are making their students sit for this test, i don't see them taking the language seriously.

calvin said...

@ seizhin:
i guess the chinese make these funny mistakes as much as the japanese as well xD

calvin said...

@ kok hong:
that is just an excuse. even if i don't laugh at them, other foreigners (like you) will do the same thing too. so, it makes no difference.

okay, i'm a neither a red or a blue litmus paper already now ^^

calvin said...

@ `chwk87:
i get what you are trying to imply here. this entry is not meant to show how poor their level of english because we all know the facts regarding that matter. i was just picking them out from a lighter side of view ;)

calvin said...

@ pinksterz:
did the egyptians make your english become this bad? =P

calvin said...

@ lyk:
maybe they love their 'R' and 'U' very much. even if they passed their exams by memorising the past-year papers, i think they'd memorised the wrong paper. haha =P

rojakrojak said...


i should remind myself to read things like this at appropriate times.

calvin said...

@ rojakrojak:
haha, paiseh lor if i'd made you laughed at the wrong time.
but i guess it you need that one right time, it would be when you are having constipation. one time laugh, sure everything will come out at once!

haha xD