Archive for Language and tourism

Quiet thirst

Mark Swofford, who is visiting the Jiaobanshan (Jiaoban Mountain) Park in Fuxing District of Taoyuan City, sent me this photograph of a sign introducing the area:

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AntC sent in this snippet of Taiwan history overlaying today's native culture rights movement:  Taiwan News (in English); Liberty Times Net (in Mandarin).  The articles tell a tale of vast amounts of gold stashed away by Japanese colonialists and treasure seekers trying to find it now three quarters of a century later.  The photograph of the excavation site in the latter article looks pretty hit or miss.

Allegedly, the fleeing Japanese occupiers buried gold somewhere near Taitung (city; county) in the  Jhihben Hot Springs (Zhīběn wēnquán 知本溫泉) area. This is a steep gorge running into the mountains southwest of Taitung. There are plentiful thermal springs in the gorge, with huge resort-hotels that (before Covid) were a magnet for Japanese tourists.

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"Carefully Fall Into The Cliff"

It's been a while since we have posted on this sub-genre of Chinglish:

My parents are touring China and spotted this very thoughtful sign…
byu/yumzau infunny


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Sharing joys with birds

Vito Acosta sent in this photograph of a sign at Tianmu Lake ( Tiānmù hú 天目湖) in Jiangsu:

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Diglossia: "The shabby Big Wild Goose Pagoda"

For a natural demonstration of what diglossia is in the Chinese-speaking context, watch this 0:53 video.  The speaker begins in local Xi'anese (also called Guānzhōng huà 关中话 / 關中話), but at 0:20, when he suddenly realizes that he is talking to a television reporter, after hilariously sprucing himself up a bit, he abruptly switches to Modern Standard Mandarin (MSM):

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Green box deep male shrine

Photograph taken by Yuanfei Wang in Baihou Town 百侯镇, Tai Po 大埔, Guangdong Province:

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"I have come from Rome, and all I brought you was this stylus"

So, kurzgesagt, reads the text that runs along all four sides of this two-millennia-old iron writing instrument excavated from an archeological site in London six years ago:

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A quantum leap in the Chinese toilet revolution

A friend was visiting in Lijiang, Yunnan Province (southwestern China) earlier this week.  She stayed in Yuhu 玉湖 village where Joseph Rock (1884-1962; the famous Austrian-American explorer, geographer, linguist, and botanist) lived nearly a century ago at the foot of Yulong 玉龙 Mountain.  The area around Lijiang has become a famous tourist destination, not only for the beauty of its natural scenery, but for the richness of its local culture (more about that below).  While in Lijiang, my friend was surprised to come upon signs for unisex toilets:

Here is some signage for such toilets in China:

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New Year's massacre

Boris Kootzenko spotted this truly bizarre banner at a service area on the highway leading west from Shanghai in Anhui Province:

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Gibberish Tibetan

Sign on an inn in Shangri-La, Yunnan, China:

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Chinese Chelsea

Janet Williams sent in this language selection panel from the official Sri Lanka Tourism website:

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Darling train tickets

In celebration of Valentine's Day, special commemorative train tickets for a trip between Dàlín (大林) and Guīlái (歸來) were a big hit in Taiwan this morning.

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Despicable human scum

For those wondering why on earth an official announcement about the solemn business of executing a traitor would use wildly overheated language like "despicable human scum" and "worse than a dog" (especially about the uncle of the reigning monarch), the BBC has published a short article on the language of North Korean posthumous character assassination.

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