Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Least populous U.N. member / most populous island

This is a two part post.

Nothing important, purely a matter of mild interest. Last night escaping from politics I opened an old crossword puzzle. The clue for a Mike Nothangel puzzle published in NYT back in 2007 is "Least populous U.N. member. "The answer was not a gimmie for me, in fact I never heard of the place. "Tuvalu." Turns out to be an island half way between Hawaii and Australia.

That's all for that.

The second item is a curiosity that turns out to be published all over the place.

It was seen in the sidebar of a little known website The website is one of some twenty-five or so that I noticed in the comment section to the new Guccifer DNC hack and bookmarked to look at more closely later. It is an insignificant item under Travel teased with the description "The most populous island in the world" (A debatable claim) and this odd photograph.

Good Lord, is that weird or what? 

Stranger still is the bizarre article at the site. The article was written in some other language and translated through Google, it seems. It's just awful. So awful it's funny.

I'll c/p some so you can be amused too. First paragraph, you know you're in for a challenge.
Island Mgingo area of 1.8 thousand sq. M. m is located in Africa, on Lake Victoria. Here in the huts lives of 131 people. Residents of the island organized the so-called ‘senatorial republic “, ply fishing, and their society is closed to foreigners. Rights Mgingo territory dispute between Uganda and Kenya is.
Ha ha ha. Who can stop reading? It doesn't just show how different languages are organized, it actually shows how different cultures think. How their thoughts are organized and expressed. It's like Dolphin to English, or Elephant to English.
This region began to settle in 1991.... after having carried out a special ritual expulsion of the evil spirit Calella. The ritual, held the old shaman to men cost 300 kg of fish.
Ha ha ha. It keeps getting better.
Then, in order to create a kind of self-government to the two fishermen were joined by 60 Africans from Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania.  
Catching in the coastal waters of the Nile perch, the family income is $ 200-250 per week. For comparison, in neighboring countries Africans earning the same amount for 2-3 months. 
It all makes sense. There is no problem understanding. There's a bit more at the link.

That is all. This concludes the two item post.

Unrelated: I loved this so much. It lifted a burden that makes me feel a bit guilty. Especially in Sign I feel guilty for the changes I make to the original. It really does take interpretation and not mere straight translation, not transliteration, and certainly not transcription. It doesn't go straight English to Sign. Each sentence must be processed to full comprehension then processed by "now how do I show that same idea using available signs?" sans all the Shakespearian locution with all its fancy serif curlicues that makes English moods and tenses just so? I find that process a bit mentally taxing. A stripped version comes out, rearranged, enhanced with facial expressions. The best interpretations deviate widely from precise English. Mostly because English is rather goofy and exceedingly redundant.

Take "I live my life" for example. Come on! Live and life are the exact same concept.

An example yesterday had me laughing outright. Straight language is actually quite funny. At this point I pretty much know all of the signs by pouring over all the available dictionaries repeatedly. This situation never came up in real life, but I was reading an article in English and thinking the whole thing in Sign when the word "Jerusalem" came up. I don't know that sign. Loath to spell it, I opened the dictionary apps on the phone to add it to my own vocabulary. Turns out one dictionary shows it "Jew town" while two other dictionaries show it expressed, "J town."

And that begs a rather serious question.

Now, how would you know that "J town" refers to Jerusalem and not to, say, Johnstown or Jacksonville, Joilet, or to Johannesburg, Jodhpur, Jersey City, Juneau, Julesburg, or the like? Purely by context. And if there is no context, for example, in answering "Where did you go for vacation?" Then you'd need to spell it. I still think "Jew, center, temple" would be a lot better for "Jerusalem" than the hilarious (to me) "Jew town." Seeing it come up on the screen and shown so flatly as that cracked me up.


ricpic said...

Slum Island!

edutcher said...

Jumping off point for the Gilberts campaign in WWII.

Big mistake.

Sixty Grit said...

Those of us who know refer to Johannesburg as "Jo-burg". Yeah, that's how we roll. But when we stop, we stop in Cape Town.

ndspinelli said...

Looks like an island off of Martha's Vineyard where the help live.

john said...

Except it's in the Caribbean. Belongs to Columbia.

Amartel said...

There's a fallen log in the creek near my house where the raccoons hang out that looks more liveable.

ampersand said...

Nauru island. Once one of the highest per capita income in the world,due to easily mined phosphates ,pissed away over one billion in bad investments.