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in Destinations, Life, Musings, Nicaragua

Lost in Translation

  • March 21, 2015
  • By Cynthia
  • 0 Comments
Lost in Translation

Living in another country and using another language on the daily is exciting and fun and difficult and rewarding and so much more.
But you wanna know something that, until you’ve done it, never occurs to you?
Your jokes will not translate. Your general hilarity will be lost on everyone.
I mean, what kind of life is that!?!
For starters, if you are someone like me who relies heavily on puns for her general hilarity, then expect to be disappointed when planning to be hilarious in another language. For you see at the heart of every good pun is, as you know, a play on words. And it can be extremely hard to learn how to make those plays on words when the words DO NOT TRANSLATE the same.
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Take, for example, my all time favorite party joke – I stole it from my brother years ago and I’ve never given it back. It goes a little something like this:
What did the raspberry say to the strawberry?
…If we hadn’t been so fresh last night, we wouldn’t be in this jam!
(I am a child, apparently, because this joke still makes me cackle out loud with glee five years later)
Now try to translate that into ooohhh, I don’t know…SPANISH, for example.
You’ll find that it’s all good until you get to that last word. Because guess what? Spanish does not have a word that doubly signifies a difficult situation AND a delicious spread for toast.
Do you see the problem here? All of this is a roundabout way to tell you guys that, fer realz, my hilarity is lost in this language. And if for no other reason than this, I am doubly – nay, triply! – invested in getting fluent.
After all, a girl’s gotta have her jokes! Otherwise how will all the Spanish speakers of the world know how hilarious I am? 😉

By Cynthia, March 21, 2015
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HELLO
Hey there, I'm Cynthia
Adventure seeking, travel obsessed, style loving, feminist, pug mother. Lover of language and the tales we weave. Badass in my own mind. Over-user of puns. Will sing for coffee.
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