Archive for 六月, 2009

27 2009

Daily Quote: floated away like a wisp

Published by under Daily Quote

Germaine Greer 在今天的《卫报》上的纪念文章:

His sudden death is a strange kind of victory. He had managed to prevent his ageing and even his growing up. There was no beard upon his chin; his voice was a childish treble. Instead of entering middle age and letting himself be chained to earth, he has floated away like a wisp, annihilated on the brink of a 50-date concert tour that I for one was dreading.

Germaine Greer: ‘Like Orpheus, Michael Jackson was destroyed by his fans’

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26 2009

英语阅读:Richard Williams on Michael Jackson

Published by under 英语阅读

2009-06-26 The Guardian

今天《卫报》凌晨第二版上的头版文章,作者 Richard Williams 的开头句子是这样的:

Michael Jackson may have spent his last years mutating into an ever more freakish version of himself, eventually becoming a prize exhibit in the celebrity zoo, but under the outlandish surface was a singer who had come by his fame not via mere eccentricity or a stroke of luck, but through a genuinely remarkable talent that deserved to conquer the world.

全文:For all his flaws he was the greatest entertainer of his age.

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19 2009

Buzzword: redact

Published by under Buzzword

从昨天起,redact 忽然成了一个时髦词汇。其实许多英国人在昨天以前,都不知道 redact/redaction 是什么意思,因为这是一个平时很少用的词,意思是为了出版的目的而编辑文字。昨天英国下议院终于公布了议员们的津贴保险单,但是用黑块屏蔽了报销单上的许多资料,其解释是为了议员的安全、议员联络人的安全、议员的个人隐私等等--这些资料被 redacted 了。但是在《每日电讯报》已经掌握所有未经屏蔽的资料之后,这些 redaction 成了 blackout,被看作是找借口掩盖议员滥用津贴的事实。

《每日电讯报》上 Emma Hartley 写了一段很有意思的博客:

Redaction: The meaning of that word in full.

同时《每日电讯报》在宣传它明天的揭露议员隐藏了什么的专刊时,用了这个标题:

So who redacted files

在《卫报》上,Zoe Williams 的评论是:

I’m outraged! Well, may be not – please redact that thought.

在《曼城晚报》(Manchester Evening News)文章标题是:

To redact, or not to redact?

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17 2009

Buzzword: top slicing and slush fund

Published by under BBC,Buzzword

昨天 Lord Carter 的 Digital Britain white paper 一出,BBC Trust 主席 Sir Michael Lyons 随即公开表示反对政府对 BBC 拥有的 TV licence 进行 top slicing。Top slicing 最近在讨论 BBC 前途时,出现很多,指的是政府打算从 TV licence 收入中扣除一部份用于其它用途,可以翻译成“切蛋糕”式的瓜分。与 top slicing 相对的是 salami slicing,在这个语境下,是指 TV licence 总数减少,但全部给 BBC,这样 BBC 就必须象“切香肠”那样处处节省一点。

Lyons, responding to the publication of Lord Carter’s Digital Britain report today, reiterated that he opposes any move to “top-slice” the licence for purposes beyond the BBC.

Michael Lyons 在他的采访中,还说政府不能把 BBC 手里的 TV licence fee 当作 slush fund 一样,说拿就拿。Slush fund 多翻译成“行贿基金”、“收买基金”,其实中文里有个很贴切的词,而且也符合这个语境:“小金库”。

Sir Michael Lyons, the chairman of the BBC Trust, has hit out at government plans to use part of the BBC licence fee as a “slush fund” to pay for the delivery of regional news by independent consortia.

Digital Britain: BBC Trust chairman attacks ‘top-slicing’ plans

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16 2009

Daily Quote: yoke on the shoulder

Published by under Daily Quote

这是在上周末《卫报》上的Simon Hoggart 形容工党议员如何无法下手把自己的领导人赶下台时,用了两个比喻:套惯了马轭的马不知道怎么独立行走;放出来的骗子不知道如何面对自由的生活,要再次作案为的是能重回监狱。

They have spent so many years bending to have the yoke slipped over their shoulders they don’t know to react to  the chance of independence, like ex-cons who can’t cope with freedom and offend again in order to be sent back to jail.

他还用 apparatchiks (来自俄语的“干部”一词)来形容工党议员,因为是用了把首相布朗比作斯大林的玩笑。

The Guardian: The yoke’s on Gordon’s apparatchiks

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13 2009

Daily Quote: William Hague on Peter Mandelson

Published by under Daily Quote

保守党影子内阁成员 William Hague 是有名的言辞犀利的政客,这个星期他在下议院辩论厅嘲笑布朗内阁改组之后的有着超长头衔的 Peter Mandelson:

And Lord Mandelson, denied the opportunity of becoming Foreign Secrectary, by the sad combination of a Prime Minister too weak to remove his Foreign Secrectary, being equally matched by Foregin Secrectary too weak to challenge the Prime Minister, has gone around instead collecting titles and even whole government department under his name. Now adding that the Right Honourable the Baron Mandelson of Foy in the County of Herefordshire and Hartpool in the County of Durham, First Secrectary of State, and Lord President of Privy Council, and Secrectary of State for Business, and Secrectary of State for Innovation and Skills. It would be no surprise to wake up in the morning and find him become an Archbishop.

这段话听录自BBC Radio 4 的 Week in Westminster 节目,不过如果一定要找文字记录的话,可以到议会网站找议会出版物 Hansard。

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06 2009

Daily Quote: As such

Published by under Daily Quote

《卫报》的Simon Hoggart今天在他的文章中议论新工党(New Labour)喜爱的拗口难懂的句子结构和用词,其中提到了前工党内阁大臣 James Purnell 的辞职信

I always thought that New Labour regarded the English language as an enemy – or at least an impertinent incovenience, to be bullied into submission. Hence all those terrible terms from management-speak, such as “stakeholder”, “pathway project” and “the patient journey”, sometimes leading to weird, unexpected images. For example, no minister could ever say “we are trying to find ways of improving children’s diets” when she could – and did – say “we are rolling out fresh fruit in primary schools.”

Worst of all, they don’t listen to themselves. Take James Purnell’s resignation letter: “I am therefore calling on you to stand aside to give our party a fighting chance of winning. As such, I am resigning from the government.”

“As such”? What on earth does that mean? Why not “for that reason”? Or “since that is how I feel”? Or just “so”? As I say, they never seem to pay any heed to what they are saying, still less writing.

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01 2009

Carrotmob

Published by under Word by Word

在6月8日出版的这期 Time 杂志上,看到这篇讨论 Carrotmob 的文章。所谓 Carrotmob,来自 carrot – mob,即用胡萝卜而不是大棒来说服他人的群众。这一运动,最早是由美国旧金山的环保活跃份子 Schulkin 发起,鼓励参与者以购物行动支持一些商家,商家则保证将部份额外的收入用于环保目的--比如改装店内照明,采用绿色灯源等。参与者叫做 carrotmobster,他们不需要捐款捐物,只要改变自己的购物习惯即可。在经济萧条的形势下,这一行动对参与商家也很有吸引力。

Carrotmob 这的词让我想起另一个新词 flashmob。这是在社会媒体(social media)兴起后出现的活动,参与者通过社会媒体网站、电子邮件、手机短信等转递消息,在事先约好的某时某地出现,一起做同一件事情,然后自行散去。Flashmobster 参与通常就是为了好玩,无伤大雅。不过今年手机网络 T-Mobile 已经瞄上 flashmob ,我已经看到至少两段 T-Mobile 的广告是以 flashmob 为主题的假记录片,广告标语是 Life’s for sharing,看似随机自发的 flashmob,其实都有广告公司在背后策划 (UTalkMarketing 网站上说这是由 Saatchi & Saatchi 和 Unruly Media 共同策划的)。不仅现场事先安排摄像机,而且还派了舞蹈演员装扮成旅客和路人随歌起舞。

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