Fragrant & Hot Marxism

If that phrase doesn’t get your mouth watering then I don’t know what will.  Recently, this restaurant in Shanghai has been made “famous” for this slogan by the New York Times, when the paper ran a story about the hilarity (and awkwardness) of Chinglish signs in Shanghai as part of its Expo.

Marxism makes a great appetizer. Picture from NY Times.

Given my past posts on translated English signs in China, I’m going take partial credit for giving them the lead.  Still I have to give them props for bringing the story to the next level and for some great pictures, some of which I will repost here .

Normally there's nothing funny about drunken driving. Picture from NY Times.

Another article in the New York Times discusses how the Chinese are making a concerted push to rid the streets of such awkwardly translated signs.  On the one hand, especially when it involves basic procedures and food, I fully support that effort.  On the other hand, there are all kinds of instances where the real meaning can be discerned from context without a proper translation.  And changing all of the signs in this category would result in the loss of something that I find incredibly charming and endearing about China.

Seriously, won't we miss signs like this when they're gone? Picture from NY Times.

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