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《没有“中国制造”的一年》第六章:发明之母 (二)

(2011-06-03 09:19:24)
标签:

美国人

没有

中国

制造

英汉

第六章

连载二

杂谈

分类: 胡译赏析

《没有“中国制造”的一年》第六章:发明之母 <wbr>(二)

                                                A Year without Made in China

Sara Bongiorni

                                                    没有“中国制造”的一年

                                                                  (美)萨拉·邦乔妮

                                      胡宗锋  苦丁  (译)

                                                   Chapter Six       Mothers of Invention

                                                        第六章             发明之母(二)

        It’s a point I’ve been ruminating for months, ever since I kept the American lamp with the Chinese part in it.This week I was reminded again of the difficulty of avoiding China when I purchased earrings from a local artist. I was feeling pleased with myself until I got home and noticed the free gift box they came in was made in China.

      自从我留下有中国配件的美国台灯以来,这几个月我一直在仔细考虑这一点。这周我在当地一家饰品店买耳坠的时候,又一次感到到了避免中国制造是何等困难。我一直很开心,直到回家后发现免费的礼物盒是中国的。

   My boss continues his critique.

“You know what you are doing? You are delaying your dependence on China, not escaping it,”he says.“You’re also kidding yourself.”

    头儿继续着他的批判。

   “你知道你在干吗吗?你只是在推迟对中国的依赖,而不是逃避,”他说,“你这也是在糊弄自己。”

        This is my nice boss talking. His boss, a frequent grouch, didn’t slow down when I tried to stop him to suggest that I write a series of stories on the boycott for the business magazine where I work.

“Nobody gives a crap about that stuff but you,” he tossed over his shoulder.“Sounds like another one of your ploys to slam Wal-Mart.”

     这是我和善老板的话。而他的老板,一个碎碎念,在我试图打断他,告诉他我在为我效力的杂志写一系列有关抵制的文章时,依旧念叨着。

 “除了你,没人对那些玩意儿有想法,”他从肩头摔过一句说,“听上去就像你抵制沃尔玛的一个翻版。”

I suspect the nice boss has been spending too much time with the grouchy one, because they are starting to sound a lot alike.

“Maybe you can make it a year without Chinese products, but sooner or later you’ll be eating from China’s hand,” the nice boss says. “There’s no getting around it.”

I sneer at him as he turns to leave.

“Thanks for your support,” I say to his back.

我怀疑我和善的老板和碎碎念老板在一起呆得太久了,他们的话如出一辙。

“或许你可以坚持一年不用中国产品,但早晚你得依赖中国过活,”和善的老板说,“那就躲不过去。”

他转过身走的时候我对他冷笑了一下。

 “谢谢您的支持,”我对着他的背影说。

         He’s right, of course, which makes him all the more irritating. I’m not living normally without Chinese items. I’m coming up with stopgap measures to tide me over until I’ve got other options, presumably Chinese ones. Take the printer cartridge. After it ran dry I began asking Kevin to print pages for me on his office printer, which itself is quite possibly Chinese; I never dared to ask him to pull it from the wall and check the label on the back for me. He was grumpy enough about printing the pages and I didn’t want to push my luck.

       当然,他说的对,所以他令人更不爽。没有中国货,我的生活不正常,为了应付我总是得凑合,直到找到其他的替代品,而替代品极有可能是中国的。比如说打印机的墨粉。墨粉用完后,我让凯文帮我用他办公室的打印机打印,而他的打印机很可能是中国的;我从来不敢叫他为我把打印机卸下来查看后面的标签。对于打印东西他已经够生气了,我可不敢得寸进尺。

        Then Kevin left town—he’s off to Paris, to run a summer study-abroad program for the university—putting an end to that option. Since then I’ve been sending documents to myself at work by e-mail, then printing them out there. It’s only a few pages and a little ink but I bring American copy paper from home to ease my guilt over conducting personal business at work. I keep reminding myself to take a look at the back of the office printer, and also the cartridge inside it, to pin down where they were made, for the record, but I’m afraid one of my co-workers will see me and ask what I’m up to. I’d probably make a full confession, and then maybe they’d tell the grumpy boss, who might fire me for using company ink. Or worse—he would let me keep my job but tell me I couldn’t print at work any more. Then I’d really be in a jam. I’d have to drive to the public library, which lets you print 20 pages for free during each visit. I checked the other day, in

case it comes to that.

        后来凯文离开了镇子——为学校的一个夏季海外学习项目去了巴黎,——我的这个替代品就指望不上了。那之后,我把文件发到自己邮箱,上班时在公司打印出来。虽然只是几页纸和一点点墨粉,但是为了减轻上班时间干私事的罪恶感,我从家里带去美国复印纸。我一直提醒自己,要看看公司打印机后面的标签,还有它里面的墨粉,好知道它们是哪里制造以便做记录,但我害怕被同事看到并打破砂锅问到底。我有可能和盘托出, 他们就可能会告诉我那个乖戾的老板,老板可能因为我用公司的墨粉而炒我鱿鱼. 或者更糟——他会让我保住自己的工作,但再也不能在上班时间打印,那我可就真的遭殃了。我得开车去公共图书馆,那里每次可以免费打印20页。为了以防万一,我前两天就查询过了。

       Our inkless printer is one of a series of recent troubles in the area of electronics, where China is king. One day, lying on the sofa, I tick them off in my head.

One: The screen of our little television has started to go dark for minutes at a time, including at least twice during the climax of a public-television mystery when we were on the edge of our seats.

        没有墨粉的打印机只是我们家家用电器——中国主宰的领域——的系列问题之一。一天,躺在沙发上,我在脑海中一件件罗列。

1.我们小电视的屏幕开始几分钟一次黑屏,包括至少有两次我们正看到公共电台揭秘的紧要处,大家都紧张得快站起来了。

      Two:The CD player stopped working after Sofie stuck something inside the disc tray when I wasn’t looking. I don’t know what her weapon is, but it’s small and deadly, at least to the CD player, which now makes endless clicks every time I turn it on, but no music. Every day or two, I press the power button to see if the problem has resolved itself, but so far no dice. I’m not the only one who misses listening to music, either. On torrid afternoons, when it’s too hot to venture outside, I let the children pull the cushions off the sofa and blast a Muppets version of “Jingle Bell Rock” over and over while they jump on the springs of the sofa. These days they bounce in silence. Without music their bouncing has a joylessness that reminds me of the overweight ladies I’ve seen dutifully executing movements in water-aerobics class at the YMCA near our house.Nobody looks like they are having much fun.

        2.一次我没注意,苏菲不知把什么东西塞进了影碟机,那之后它就完全不运转了。我不知道她的武器是什么,但至少对影碟机来说是小又致命的,所以现在每次打开只能听到没完没了的咔哒声,就是没有音乐。每隔一两天,我就摁下开关,看看那个问题自己解决了没有,但是到现在还没好。我也不是唯一想念音乐的人。酷热的下午,外面太热都不敢出去的时候,我就让孩子们拿掉沙发垫,伴着童声版的《铃儿响叮当》在沙发上跳着玩。这几天他们静悄悄的跳起落下,没有音乐他们的弹跳显得毫无趣味,这让我想起我在附近基督教青年会水下有氧运动班见过的超重妇女们的机械运动,似乎没有一个人玩得高兴。

        Three: Adult fun is likewise in jeopardy these days. The blade on our blender broke the other day, and when I called the manufacturer they told me the replacement blades they sell are made in China.

“So you’re telling me we can’t make margaritas this summer?” Kevin asks me during a call home from France. Paris is supposed to make people feel romantic. I can hear something in his voice but it doesn’t sound like love.

        3.大人的乐趣最近也有了危险。前几天我们搅拌机上的叶片坏了,我打电话给制造商,结果被告知他们卖的替换叶片都是中国的。

 “你是说我们这个夏天都不能做玛格丽特(鸡尾酒)了?”凯文从法国给家里打电话时问道。大家都觉得巴黎会让人浪漫,从他的声音里我能听出一些东西,但却不是爱。

       Four: The vacuum has stopped sucking, despite my vigorously cleaning its ghastly insides. I suspect whatever is blocking it has something to do with China. Perhaps I suctioned up an old toy.

In short, when I look around the house these days I see a series of problems, almost all of them with Chinese solutions.

         4. 吸尘器不吸尘了,不管我多么卖力的清理它恐怖的内部器件。我怀疑不管是什么东西造成了堵塞,一定和中国有关,很可能是吸进了一件旧玩具。简而言之,最近几天我环视屋子里的一系列问题,几乎只有中国可以解决。

         I should be really worked up about all of this, but malaise has taken over, a function of humid days in the 90s.There on the sofa, I stare at the ceiling and consider the worst-case scenario. If I can’t find anything but Chinese replacements for the jammed stereo, the erratic television, the bladeless blender, and the powerless vacuum cleaner, I can live with that. I can live without all of those things, at least for now, maybe forever. In some ways it will be a relief to get rid of them; as always, the house seems overly full of things that need to be dusted and arranged and repaired. I like to think that I am secretly a minimalist when it comes to material possessions.This could be my chance to find out if I mean it.

        我真的早该解决所有的问题了,但潜在的不满意识在作怪,这是湿热的90年代的症状。躺在沙发上盯着天花板,我考虑着最坏的情况。如果除了中国配件找不到别的,用被卡住的音响,不稳定的电视机,没有叶片的搅拌机,不吸尘的吸尘器,我还是可以过日子的。即便是没有这些东西我也是能活下去的,至少现在可以,也许永远如此。在某种程度上,没有这些东西倒是一种宽慰。一直以来,家里满满当当,要人打扫、要人收拾、要人修理。涉及到物质的东西时,我暗自认为自己是个极简抽象派艺术家。这可是一个机会,看我是否果真如此。

                                           汉语文字版请阅读《美文》2011年第六期

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