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A Sandwich Short Of A Picnic? Week 1 Translation Theory Exercise

picnic

Translation Theory Week 1 01/10/14 Exercise – Wesley Gerrard   Translate the following text into the language of your choice. Would it make sense if you translated it word for word?   Mary pulled his leg and he believed it all. He was clearly a sandwich short of a picnic. He didn’t like it when he realized she was laughing at him but as they were thick as thieves he didn’t take it personally.   From initially looking at the text, it is full of colloquialisms which will not translate directly word-for-word.   Mary pulled his leg and he believed it all. He was clearly a sandwich short of a picnic. He didn’t like it when he realized she was laughing at him but as they were thick as thieves he didn’t take it personally.   I have highlighted in bold the three main colloquialisms which I can foresee producing errors. When I translate, I very often like to throw the text into Google translate to see how a rudimentary metaphrase of the text appears. One cannot think of it as cheating. Machine translation exists and is in the modern world of translation. It should therefore be used. At the very least some of the unknown vocabulary can be discovered and it will be possible to identity some of the issues that have already been noted regarding the colloquialisms.   Here is the English – Spanish Google translate of the text:   María sacó su pierna y creía todo. Él era claramente un corto sándwich de un picnic. No le gustaba que cuando se dio cuenta que se estaba riendo de él, pero como eran uña y carne no lo tome como algo personal.   Automatically I can see that Maria has an accent – which I might not have realized. I next notice that there could be problems with the ‘sandwich short of a picnic’. I want to really find a Spanish phrase for being ‘a bit crazy’. I can’t think off the top of my head what that could be at present and will need to research. ‘poco loco’ is maybe a bit too general and vague. I think that Google translate could have possibly done a sense-for-sense paraphrase for ‘thick as thieves’ – ‘uña y carne’ seems to be what is produced. It literally means ‘flesh and bone’. Google translate will look at a database of previous…

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