Photo by Kyle Taylor on Flickr
Want to have some foreign fun this Friday? Below are ten devilishly diverse ways you can celebrate the International Federation of Translators’ 64th annual International Translation Day, September 30th. This year’s theme is Connecting Worlds, bringing together the world of translators and interpreters “…dedicated to one goal: Facilitating communication between people.” As the world becomes more globalized and integrated, the need to understand each other grows more critical every day.
Celebrate your international translation skills by getting massively multicultural and merrily multilingual on Friday!
1. Enroll your children in a foreign language immersion course or vow to raise your future children bilingually, even if you aren’t bilingual yourself. It’s been a trending topic for several weeks now that bilingual kids do better in life and are better prepared for a globalized world. And they may grow up smarter than monolingual kids, too. You want your daughter or son to grow up to be CEO of a global company, right???
2. Watch a foreign family-friendly bilingual movie (with subtitles, not dubbing.) Learn five phrases from it. Amaze your friends at cocktail parties by saying, “The pink unicorn from the Land Beyond The Clouds refuses to eat his sushi,” in Japanese.
3. Visit a strange land where English isn’t the first language. Fortunately, that’s often just a short drive across town.
4. Learn how to say “My hovercraft is full of eels” with Google Translate so you don’t embarrass yourself.
5. Learn idiomatic expressions in other languages that sound like grand translation snafus but really aren’t (like when English speakers say “It’s raining cats and dogs”. There hasn’t been an explosion at the Humane Society!)
6. Learn a song in another language.
(And dance like nobody’s watching!)
7. Translate My hovercraft is full of eels into another language and then back again. Or do it into several other languages and then back to English. Hilarity ensues.
8. Do a Google Images search on “bad translations” or “mistranslations” for more hilarity. Like, real, hardcore, LOL hilarity.
9. Think you’re a big-shot polyglot? Prove it by scoring high in The Great Language Game! (Side note: Wouldn’t Big-Shot Polyglot be a great name for a multilingual musical band?)
10. Learn Mandarin Chinese. Or maybe pick something a little simpler. Chinese is not a language for rank noobs!
Happy International Translation Day!
(We wanted to translate “Happy International Translation Day” into other languages but we got far worse Google Translate results than for “My Hovercraft is full of eels”)
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