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If we find matches from your Facebook friends, we'll connect you to them right away. Tell my friends about Myspace? We based it off your Twitter details. After the customer used gestures to convey his desire, the tobacconist looks in the phrasebook to find a Hungarian translation for "six and six"  i.
A policeman Graham Chapman , hearing the punch from a considerable distance, runs to the shop. In the film version, he steals a bicycle from an innocent rider. The Hungarian angrily points out the shopkeeper to the constable, saying "Drop your panties Sir William, I cannot wait till lunchtime.
The publisher of the phrasebook, Alexander Yalt Michael Palin , is taken to court, where he pleads not guilty to a charge of intent to cause a breach of the peace. After the prosecutor reads some samples from the book a mistranslation for "Can you direct me to the station? When the judge Jones denies the request, the policeman lets off a loud fart he has been trying to suppress.
Aperture Science would surely approve. Seems like the Brazillians use "aerodeslizador", literally aero-slider. The German and ironically? Hungarian translations both use "air-pillow" for the hovering part, though in German they translated it as "vehicle" and in Hungarian as "boat.
The old french word "cuissin", meaning "cushion for the hip" comes from "coxa" which is "hip" in Latin. If you look at the other Germanic languages, most use either "vehicle" or "boat". As a native speaker born far away from any body of water, I would have said that you could use "Luftkissenboot" and "Luftkissenfahrzeug" interchangeably but the German Wikipedia article disagrees.
V-2 on May 9, Yeah, same in Polish - it's "poduszkowiec" pillow - "poduszka". Fins on May 9, Same in Russian as well, "vessel on an air-pillow". Your remark somehow caused me to fall down an internet rabbit hole. First I remembered reading a story on the internet that in Bislama, one of the official languages of the island nation of Vanuatu, the word for Helicopter is "mixmaster blong Jesus Christ".
The explanation being that blades of a helicopter are like a blender, and Jesus Christ went to heaven, so "the blender that rises up to heaven". Then, before replying with that, I wondered if there actually was any proper source for that. Now, the official bislama. Also, surely a quirk like this would be mentioned on the Wikipedia page for the language, and it is not.
So where did the story come from? The only primary source that I have found for this claim is a story from the s by Richard Shears, a journalist for the London Daily Mail. The original inhabitants adopted Bislama, a type of pidgin English. Technically, it might be the case that this was a Bislama way of describing a helicopter forty years ago. But until we get some native speakers to confirm or deny this, it sounds a bit unlikely. While this is not really evidence, the writing style also makes it sound more like made up a "haha look at the primitive natives" -story.
First we get the "basket blong titty" example. Because natives don't wear bras of course, they're nudes, so they don't have a word for it. But they have baskets, and a brassiere is something to hold breasts. Hence, basket blong titty. Similarly: "haha, they do not make a distinction between brooms and brushes because they are simple, so they call a toothbrush a "broom blong tut".
Note: bismata. Brassiere is not in their on-line dictionary yet. And then, once you follow that logic and accept that those two things might be true, 'mixmaster blong Jesus Christ' seems both outlandish and believable at once because it is both funny and conveniently fits preconceived notions of simple, primitive island natives.
But why would the Vanatu people know what a blender is, but instead of saying blender make up a simple word "mixmaster"? Why would the first association be a blender, but not a boat propeller, which seems a lot more likely for an island nation?
Why would they know about the story of Jesus Christ and his ascension, and make that the first association? It's a brand name. Like "hoover" for "vacuum cleaner". His friend Milan Kundera , a Czech expatriate writer living in France, invited him to a fancy Parisian restaurant.
Their waiter, also friends with Kundera, thought that he treated him with polite expressions in Czech like "How do you do? He told the poor waiter what had been going on. There is a story or joke about a Dutch horsebreeder conversing with an Englishman where she uses the Dutch word for breeding fokken and then mistakes the Englishman's "pardon" for the Dutch word for horses "paarden".
Both fokken and fucking have the same Germanic stem in both meaning and grammar see ficken in German. In some versions of the joke, it's the Prime Minister of the Netherlands on a state visit to the United States. Englishman : So what is it you do? Engrish is pretty much the epitome of this trope. Many of the problems stem from the fact that, in Japan, English looks cool and interesting, so fashion designers tend to use random English words for the sake of fashion.
In those cases, it's common to use curse words and other dirty phrases. Some clothing tends to be plastered with the word "fuck" and it's seen as nothing, and one infamous t-shirt had the phrase "Spread Beaver, exposing the vaginal area.
In China, this is common on public buildings, though normally these are close translations that just have different connotations here. This is part of the problem with Backstroke of the West and its infamous "Do Not Want" — while it's a "Blind Idiot" Translation to be sure, many of the errors can be traced back to this trope.
The English signage on the Taipei subway currently warn that in the event of a mechanical problem with the train, you should "defend yourself with what you can find. A great example from a Japanese rent a car driving instructions book: "When passenger of foot heave in sight, tootle the horn. Trumpet him melodiously at first but if he still obstacles your passage, then tootle him with vigour.
Because of a combination of this and Funetik Aksent , one park named in honor of China's ethnic minorities got the ironic name of "Park of the Racists. See The Other Wiki. It's worth expanding on how "English As She Is Spoke" apparently came to be: One of the authors wrote a perfectly competent and serviceable French-to-Portuguese phrase book.
The other author, who didn't speak English, and without the permission of the first, took that phrase book, and using a French-to-English dictionary, produced a book that offers such English phrases as "He know ride horse," "Take out the live coals with the hand of the cat," "The walls have hearsay," "That pond it seems me many multiplied of fishes," and "It want to beat the iron during it is hot.
According to historian Warren Carroll, Madame Nhu overheard American journalists using the word "barbecue" to describe the incidents, and, not being familiar with English and therefore, not realizing that the word was an Unusual Dysphemism , used it in a national broadcast, provoking worldwide outrage.
Although one must question the veracity of this explanation, given the other offensive things Madame Nhu had said, before and since. A student at the University of Pennsylvania had gone to a Hebrew-speaking high school.
Apparently, the Hebrew word for water buffalo, behema , is slang for a thoughtless, rowdy person. And the sorority girls outside his dorm were being thoughtless and rowdy.
So he poked his window out of his room and yelled, "Shut up, you water buffalo! Thus began one of the great tempests in teapots of the s. During World War 2 , an American airman was captured and placed in a prison camp with other captured airmen, many of whom were British.
Trying to be friendly, they kept telling him to remain hopeful and "keep his pecker up. George Carlin had a routine about "Let the daredevils ride on the plane, I'm riding in the plane". When a native English speaker tries in good faith to do a word-for-word translation into any of several other languages it's fairly common for them to accidentally imply that something is on top of the vehicle instead of the intended meaning of inside it.
Another source of preposition trouble is that the English preposition "on" can mean both "atop" as in "the spoon was on the table" and "affixed to" as in "the picture was on the wall" , where some other languages use distinct pronouns for these concepts. This probably serves as a meta example. This leads to a confusing reading of the example until the mistake is realized.
It resulted in gems such as "Squirrel institute," "President of wounds," "Arm-medical institute," and so on. Swedish music producer and songwriter Max Martin is responsible for many, many chart-topping pop hits. However, English is not his first language, and he has made some notorious mistakes: The Britney Spears song " There was a version that made more sense, but they decided that the nonsensical version sounded better and recorded and released it anyway.
In the Soviet and post-Soviet era, this town is well-known in Estonia for its prison. There are numerous examples of Estonian words which may sound funny or rude in Russian. Kindergarten "Mudila" "Asshole" in Russian , for instance. A bit of an outdated example since it no longer exists is the Estonian University of Experimental Biology located at ebi.
In some Tagalog dialects, "kiki" is slang for "young woman's vagina" Unfortunately it is also a Japanese name, adding new, terrible meaning to things such as Kiki's Delivery Service Conversely "puki" pronounced pookie , is used a common English pet name, but is slang for "old woman's vagina.
One Canadian working abroad in France was flustered one day when she was trying to introduce a guest around her workplace, using the word "introduire" repeatedly as she made the introductions, which on the surface sounds correct.
Unfortunately, the correct way to introduce someone is to "presenter" them, as in "may I present so-and-so. The French words poisson fish and poison a toxic substance are close enough to be confused. Fish without drink — it's poison! The French noun baiser means "a kiss. This has tripped up quite a few enthusiastic non-native speakers. In a quite hilarious case of Have a Gay Old Time , some older books have repeatedly translated "to kiss" as baiser rather than the modern embrasser.
The French word meaning "preservative" is conservateur. Hence, English speakers often seeing nothing wrong with ordering "the peas" at a restaurant, only to confuse a French waiter by ordering all the peas in the world.
A more common example is to ask for "le sel" the salt or "le poivre" the pepper , with similar results. Properly, you ask for "du sel" and "du poivre. The correct word is massicot or massicotier after its inventor. Plein or pleine means "full" when applied to objects, so a novice French speaker who has had enough to eat might say "Je suis pleine," accidentally announcing their pregnancy. French dialects from different parts of the world frequently give different meanings to the same word.
Thus, a phrase like "I give a kiss to my kids every night before going to bed" has a whole new meaning Kennedy to express solidarity with the people of Berlin during the Cold War.
A common urban legend states that the real phrase should be "Ich bin Berliner," but with the indefinite article ein added, it became "I am a jelly donut" Berliner being a type of donut originating in Berlin. The supposed error is similar to the English phrases, "I am Danish" vs. In either case, video recordings of the speech exist and the crowd clearly understands the phrase and takes it as it was meant. Saying "Ich bin Berliner" could not.
For more detail, see this page on the Other Wiki. In what may be an urban legend, a cautionary tale is told to GIs learning German. A young serviceman is in a German bar trying to pick up a lovely young lady.
Note that the "ch" sound in "ich" is not the same sound as in "Nacht. If a German speaker wanted to explain what crops their farmer father grew, they might say they grew 'mice' if they didn't know that Mais translates as corn though maize would be correct, the listener was evidently not familiar with this crop.
English speakers learning German often have trouble with the sounds spelled "ie" and "ei. Similarly, "Liebchen" is a term of endearment like "sweetheart," while "Leibchen" refers to an old-fashioned undershirt. The problem arises from the different spelling conventions of English and German: In German "ie" is always pronounced like English "ee" and "ei" like English "eye," while in English whether "ie" and "ei" are pronounced as "ee" or "eye" depends on the context e.
For instance, it is not uncommon to see the spelling "weiner" for "wiener" — in German "Wiener" pronounced "veener" means "Viennese," while "Weiner" pronounced "viner" looks like "cryer," which is actually quite close to its English near-homophone, "whiner.
In the s the British manufacturer of Coventry-Climax engines discovered the hard way that "Climax" in German has only one of its several English meanings German school books tend to have fun with this.
As an example given, an English man orders a dry martini in a bar. The bartender gives him three martinis, because "dry" which in German is "trocken" sounds like the German number "drei" i. Southern Slavs often have fun with the German word "kurz" which means short. However, this is just one letter away in spelling and phonetically from the word "kurac" which means cock and is often used the way fuck is used in English, with the same level of offensiveness.
This is especially hilarious to young school goers as German is a often a mandatory subject in primary schools. During both world wars, when the Germans were questioning possible English and American Spies, they would often ask a series of rapid fire questions and listen for the wrong answers.
This worked for detecting German spies on the Allied side as well. A native German speaker would be more likely to answer "Where are you? During the Six-Day War , an Egyptian propaganda broadcaster made a small mistake in the plural form of "front" "Hazitot" , and ended up announcing that "Our forces are advancing on all bras" "Haziot". He was considered a ripe source of amusement by the civilian population.Apr 25, · John Cleese On How They Sold Monty Python To The BBC - Duration: The Late Show with Stephen Colbert 3,, views.