First request to this site from a hitherto purchaser of dodgy translation

"Year1a", by mail:

Dear ladies and gentleman,
  We are Fisheries Ltd. Company in kunming Yunnan China. We need import some fishmeal. If you have this products, please you contact with us.We expect that cooperation with you. Thanks!
  Telephone ,13759557137

Oh, George:

Why would China need to import fishmeal? Is West African fish waste sourced through Spanish producers?


The Venerable Bede said that whoever talks in church talks not with his own voice but with that of the devil within him, says Jerónimo de Alcalá in Alonso, mozo de muchos amos (1624).

Judging by David Jackson's tale (taxes wasted on the signs alone: €37,752), and on past experience, ragamoffyn has a rich furrow of kissarsers in Almería.

Tunbridge Wells, on the other hand, is impeccably governed, and it's a wonder we don't all live there.

David takes what I think is the party line on descriptive toponyms, and it's perfectly sensible:

[T]he main church, the Iglesia de la Virgen del Mar, has been signposted as the “Church of the Virgin of the Sea”. Try finding that in your guidebook,
... or by asking the locals.

But maybe another class of guidebook is needed: for virtual visitors, who, without learning the lingo, wish to relish provincial absurdities. I feel that those unfamiliar with the dialects employed in intergalactic Marianism would definitely like to know what this Virgin is up to:

And Our Lady of Overactive Letdown should never be issued without her Vatican-approved user's manual.

All of this via Lenox - sadly I long ago ceased to read the entire internet every morning before breakfast - who reports that Murcia is now sometimes Múrcia, as if they hadn't got financial problems enough.


Jordi Pujol Ferrusola's Active Translation SL is a real estate business allegedly used for money laundering, but that's OK, idiot

Although the Pujol clan's little problems are being leaked via the those parts of the Spanish-language media not on its payroll, you all finally have reason to learn Catalan: follow the consternation of some of the Plain People as they realise that when CiU told them to look up at the flag, it was merely in order to steal their wallet; observe the madness of others, still unable to acknowledge that the photographer's birdie was a ruse, not a flyer; place bets on who's going to get hurt when it all goes wrong this autumn. You won't have had so much fun since the day your dog Rover got run over.

I feel pretty sure now that either everyone will go to jail - including zombies like Felipe González and José María Aznar (the Pujols were paying off the FAES, right?) - or no one will. But while that great and predictable drama plays out, there's a wealth of great micro-scripting to keep even people like us interested and entertained.

The nerds seem to have established that both Pasqual Maragall (3%) and Josep Carod Rovira (5%) were correct, but check the linguistic meat: one of the devices of Jordi Pujol and Marta Ferrusola's eldest is a holding called Active Translation SL, whose business is said to be:

Operaciones Sobre Inmuebles en General. Compraventa; Administracion y Explotacion de Valores Mobiliarios Con o Sin Contizacion en Mercados Secundarios Oficiales. Realizacion de Estudios y Prospecciones de Mercado
Now, you and I'll be thinking that rich dimwit Jordi's got hold of a false friend of trasllat/translat/traslat in Catalan, but not at all. Translation can mean (OED):
A transfer of property; spec. alteration of a bequest by transferring the legacy to another person

Now we'll complain that that may well be so, but that he's deliberately pulling the wool over our eyes. The natural assumption from its name is that the agency will have been engaged in rendering the dreary meanderings of Ausiàs March into Macedonian, because that meaning emerged in the 14th century (along with the use of the word to describe removals of live bishops and dead saints), and is dominant, while his meaning first appears in the late 16th and is unknown even to fucking galactic genii like ourselves.

But that's just us envying his superior intelligence and education. And envy, according to Rome, is still a deadly sin, whereas I think monstrous embezzlement may be excused if it is found to serve noble human ends, such as the purchase of flags, and birdies, thus maintaining Chinese manufacturing's grasp on the Yankee throat.

Sometimes I wonder about the commission assigned to devise the post-Francoist constitution. Simply from its composition it was evident that its proposals would favour a state dominated by regional barons, but as well as discussing the division of turf, did they also discuss who was to get how much?