Magic grinds the wound, bringing invalidity

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Nora Castle sent in four photographs of Chinglish signs that she took while on a trip to China in 2009. I have previously covered two of the signs (contributed by other readers) in earlier Language Log posts, but am happy to examine the two new ones, which are actually quite delectable.

Here's Nora's first photograph:

Xī'ān Táng fēng móshù yánchuàng shètuán 西安唐风魔术研创社团
("Xi'an Society for Research and Innovation on Tang Style Magic")

And here's the second:

Qǐng nǐ zhǔdòng wèi lǎo yòu bìng cán yùn ràngzuò 请你主动为老幼病残孕让座
("Please voluntarily offer a seat to the young, old, invalid, and pregnant")

[Thanks to Zhou Yunong and Cheng Fangyi]


  1. Daniel von Brighoff said,

    October 17, 2013 @ 10:03 am

    I'm still wishing someone would produce a photograph of the "No Lion Pressing Drive" stencil on the highway to the Qin Royal Tombs. It flashed by so quickly I wasn't able to jot down the characters (and this was several years ago now, so there's a good chance it's been repaved in the interim).

  2. JS said,

    October 17, 2013 @ 11:31 am

    @Daniel von Brighoff
    It must say 禁止压线行驶 (lit. forbid press-line drive) or something similar — "pressing the line" meaning driving out of one's lane, with "lion" a mistake for "line"?

  3. Daniel von Brighoff said,

    October 17, 2013 @ 12:04 pm

    I've always assumed as much, but it would be nice to have confirmation.

  4. Neil Dolinger said,

    October 17, 2013 @ 12:29 pm

    OK, I guess "corporation" is a not-so-bad translation for 社团. I'm surprised they didn't make this the "wind magic grinds the wound corporation". Seriously though, although 研创 has an implied meaning of "research and innovation", that combination of zi doesn't show up in my dictionary*, though the long forms 研究 and 创新, 创业, 创造, etc. do.

    * I use the dictionary included with the NJStar Chinese word processing program.

  5. Victor Mair said,

    October 17, 2013 @ 2:12 pm

    @Neil Dolinger

    I view 研创 as an abbreviated form of 研究创新.

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