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《没有“中国制造”的一年》第六章:发明之母 (五)

(2011-06-23 08:56:58)
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美国人

没有

中国

制造

英汉

第六章

连载五

文化

分类: 胡译赏析

《没有“中国制造”的一年》第六章:发明之母 <wbr>(五)

                                                          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(五)

      The television apparently heals itself.The screen hasn’t gone dark in a couple of weeks. I consider the matter closed. Over the phone, Kevin tells me he will take the DVD player to a repair shop near our house when he gets back from France.

       电视机显然是不修自好了。有几个礼拜了,都没有黑屏。我想这件事就算解决了。电话里,凯文告诉我他从法国回来后会带影碟机去我们附近的维修店。

     “The guy there is some kind of genius when it comes to fixing stuff,”he says.“He’ll figure it out,no problem.”

I come up short in finding a fix only for the blender. I move it onto a shelf in the laundry room for the time being—careful to make sure the coast is clear, mouse-wise, when I open the cupboard—in the hope that Kevin won’t ask about it upon his return.

     “关于修东西,那伙计还挺有天分的,”他说,“他会修好的,没问题。”

现在唯一要解决的是搅拌器。我暂且把它放到了洗衣房的架子上——确定没什么危险——打开橱柜时被老鼠发现的危险——希望凯文不会一回来就问起。

       No sooner have I cleared up my electronics problems than I run into new sunglasses trouble. The delicate metal filigree on my old Italian sunglasses is coming apart.A lens pops out of the thin plastic wire that holds it in place. I retrieve one of the flimsy Chinese pairs that came from Kevin’s department secretary, but a day or two later I drop it on the concrete floor of the bathroom during a field trip to the zoo with Wes’s preschool class. The glasses break decisively into two pieces on the floor. I recover the pieces and drop them in the overflowing trash can, a fitting exit to their brief, unsatisfactory appearance in our lives.

       刚解决好我的家用电器问题,就又有了太阳镜的麻烦。我原来的意大利太阳镜上的精致银丝裂开了,一个镜片从细细的塑料镜框里突出来了。我又找到凯文的部门主任送的劣质的中国眼镜戴上,但是一两天后,我陪维斯和他的学前班同学去动物园实地考察,把它掉在洗手间的混凝土地板上,眼镜齐齐的摔成了两半。我捡起碎片,扔进了已经满得不行的垃圾桶,这是它在我们生活中令人不满的短暂寿命的合理归宿。

      I find a low-tech solution to the lack of sunglasses: squinting.

To stay positive, I try not to think of three things: the useless printer, the broken drawer in the kitchen, and the fact that we’ve just run out of Chinese staples.

“It’s considered a rude question,” Kevin tells me over the phone.

“Then how do people in Europe know where the things they buy come from?” I ask him.

“Apparently, for the most part, they don’t,” he says.“Unless they ask, and, like I said, that’s generally considered impolite. I get a lot of funny looks when I ask that.”

      没有太阳镜,我便想了个没有技术含量的解决之道:眯着眼睛。

为了一个好心情,我努力不去想三件事情:用不成的打印机,厨房里的坏抽屉,还有我们用完了中国订书针。

 “这是个粗鲁的问题,”电话里凯文告诉我。

 “那欧洲人怎么知道他们买的东西是哪里的?”我问他。

 “非常明显,大部分人不知道,”他说,“除非他们问起,就像我说的,这被认为很不礼貌。一问这,别人看我的眼神就怪怪的。”

       In the days before Kevin left for France I realized that his time abroad might serve a handy purpose. He could load up on toys and trinkets made in France to give us a leg up on the looming Christmas holiday.This is sneaky and seems to run counter to the spirit of the boycott, but I’m really worried about Christmas and, technically, there is nothing in the boycott rules to prevent it. It turns out my sneaky idea is a loser. Kevin has been striking out as he visits the shops and markets of Paris in search of goods made in France.

      凯文要去法国的前几天,我意识到他在国外的时间可以对我们很有用。他可以买成堆的法国玩具和小装饰品,这有助于我们的圣诞假期。这有点鬼鬼祟祟,有点违背我们的抵制精神,可是我真的很担心圣诞节,还有准确来说,抵制规则中也没有不允许这样做。事实证明我鬼祟的主意很失败。凯文造访在巴黎的各个商店和市场,找法国制造却空手而归。

      He recounts his efforts so far. One day he is about to pay for three Eiffel Tower key chains from a man at a street market when he remembers to ask the man where they were made.

“En Chine,” the man replies. In China.

Kevin dutifully holds them out to the man to return them.

       他到现在都还能细数那段经历。一天他在街道的市场上买了三个埃菲尔铁塔的钥匙挂件,要付钱时想起来问问它们是哪里制造的。

“中国,”那男子回答。中国。

凯文老实地把挂件拿出来还给老板。

        “When I explained to the guy why I couldn’t buy them, he was really understanding,” he tells me. “He asked me where I was from and then told me it’s because of Chinese imports and thirty years of bad French government that the only way he can make a living is selling things on the black market.”

      “我向人家解释为什么我不能买时,他真的非常理解,”他说,“他问我是哪儿的人,然后告诉我因为中国的进口产品和法国三十年的差劲政府,他谋生的唯一办法就是在黑市上卖东西。”

       Kevin encounters other kindred spirits among the French.When he goes to a menswear shop to order a suit and asks where they are made, the girl tells him more and more customers are asking the same question. She tells Kevin about the customer who tried on a pair of pants but then decided against buying them because they were made in China.

       凯文在法国人中还遇到了同志。他去了一家男子服装店看中了一套衣服,问这是哪里制造的,那女孩告诉他越来越多的人问这样的问题,还说有一个顾客都试了一条裤子了,却因为那是中国制造的就没有买。

Mostly he gets blank, even hostile, looks.

“The clerk at the grocery store walked away from me without answering when I asked where a T-shirt was made,” he says. “I think he considered it harassment.”

大多数情况下,他得到的是不解甚至敌意的表情。

“在一家杂货店,我问一件T恤衫是哪里制造的,店员什么都没说就走开了,”他说,“我想他觉得这就是骚扰。”

He assures me he will continue to scout for French gifts, despite hostile clerks.

“I’ll be honest with you,” he cautions.“France is pretty Chinese, too.”

Meanwhile, the mouse lays low before resurfacing, bolder than before.

尽管有充满敌意的店员,凯文还是保证他会继续寻找法国礼物。

 “我会非常忠诚的,”他细心地说,“法国也处处是中国制造。”

同时,老鼠一直很低调,直到再次出现,比以前任何时候更明目张胆。

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

                

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