Thursday, January 29, 2009


I mentioned before that I was going to eventually do a post on Engrish, and here it is.

To refresh your memory (we'll pretend you've read everything I've ever written religiously, of course), it is rather cool here, Japan, and probably other Asian countries to have things written in English. Think of the prevelence of kanji tattoos that people have in the US - same kind of thing. However, being that a vast majority of the population can't read what it says, it tends to not make much sense. This is known as Engrish.

(As an aside I read an article once on how a Japanese tattoo artist in the US was tattooing the wrong thing on people. On a girl's stomach he tattooed "Insert General Tso's chicken here" and on a big burly guy that wanted strength or some other macho man thing on his arm, he tattooed I like to wear women's underwear or something like that. Kind of funny, if you think about it. Internet people, internet. If you must follow this trend, find what you want it to say on several different sites, then take it to someone who knows the language and ask them what it says without telling them to make sure you've got it right. Geez.)

So I bring you my Engrish collection thus far. Some are better than others, and they're not all strictly Engrish - I added ones of signs and stuff that I thought were just written interestingly which could be Engrish or could be cultural. Oh, and the best Engrish of all time is at the end, so keep reading. I've retyped what things say in case it's not easy to tell from the smaller pictures - all quotes are, of course, exactly what the original says. ;)

First, we have a full wall sign outside a bar:

Can one ever remember love..It's like trying to summom up the smell of rose in acellar. tou might see arose, but never the perfume.

Love does not consist in gazing at each other, but look together in the same direction.

In the alley by my apartments:

After Childbirth & Fatness Clinic
I don't know if it's Engrish, or if they're just blunt like that.

On a shirt:

Celebrate Space will have opportunity talk with international
Yes, talk with international badly though. :)

The trashcan in my bathroom:

I was so happy when I knew that friend is very valuable mean.
Yes, and it makes me feel better everyday to throw my garbage into it.

Not really Engrish at all:

The n just wore off...but I thought the fact that something said "ew heaven" funny.

A pencil sharpener/eraser combo (that refused to take a decent picture):

I'm a good Magicion! I Can Make Happy Everyone~!! Like That~!!

In my subway station:

Warning: Steps Ahead
Not Engrish per se, but notice the location of the sign...I think at that point I'm well aware that there are steps ahead.

On a hoodie (taken with my camera phone. Must remember to always have camera when I go shopping here):

naughty Beagle
That naughty boy will be punished because he keeps camping about to people
Is there a beagle camping version of Mario I don't know about? Did I ever mention how copyright infringement really doesn't seem to exist here?

On a store window (also taken with my camera phone, which really doesn't help trying to read it):

BANC is producted in the early 2000. It is a fruit, which was made by the home playlists and from United states of Kingdom. and guarenteed by huge numbers of mania. and entertain cutter sense and a lovely colorful logo.

On the subway:

Seats for the handicapped, old, weak, pregnant woman, or accompanied with baby
Another probably not Engrish, but I like how they say those seats are reserved for the weak. Also, notice the really deformed shape of the pregnant woman's stomach. She should get an ultrasound.

And the best Engrish of all time, on a t-shirt someone bought (I would have bought one myself):

call-to-arms for all chunkily-penised boys to do her right and do her good - still mattered.
I think the pink ballet slippers really help to get that message across as well.

So that's what I have so far. Hope you have enjoyed. :)


Amy said...

I lived for a year in China, so I've had my share of Engrish, too! (BTW, I just read your Smart Bitch entry, and you had me LOLing at "shredded like the nightgown that was ripped off you last night"

Suzi said...

my brother-in-law was in China for the special olympics 2 years ago (he works for them) and the last night there were there they were thrown a Farewell Party. Unfortunately when they got the HUGE banner made for the party it got made to say "Canadian Welfare Party" instead of Canadian Farewell Party! I guess they through it was halarious!

Suzi said...

and you also won one of the song downloads over on my blog but I don't want to post the pin# here for everyone to see (just in the off chance some unkind person is lurking around waiting to steal it) so if you wanna e-mail me I'll reply with the details (