literally lost in translation

Yongkong Byulkong getting their ice cream on during their weekend date

little all too well things
  • the first line is ‘i walked through the door with you’ which to me is so interesting because this image of crossing the threshold suggests them both bravely entering something new together
  • ‘the air was cold but something ‘bout it felt like home somehow’ is kind of sad don’t you think??? i have always wondered if the cold air feels like home because she’s been treated so coldly in the past??
  • and if we take it that way then the fact that she left her ‘scarf there at your sister’s house’ is like taylor giving up her defenses against the cold way the world has treated her in order to trust him
  • and he still has it in his drawer even now??? she gave away her defenses against the coldness of the world and she never got them back!!! he left her vulnerable.
  • like i mentioned in a previous post taylor uses cars and travelling as a metaphor for relationships of different kinds so them ‘singing in the car getting lost upstate’ suggests how comfortable they felt in their relationship and how long term they thought it was going to be 
  • autumn leaves falling down like pieces into place is like a punch in the face every single time because to me it means ‘when i saw all of nature dying and coming to an end it reminded me of us’ what a thing to say wow their relationship was blossoming but now is decaying and they are spiraling uncontrollably???? what a powerful image!!!
  • again with the car metaphors ‘you almost ran the red ‘cause you were looking over at me’ seems to suggest how they almost ignored all the warnings signs that they needed to end their relationship because they were so caught up in each other
  • i feel like the phrase ‘i was there’ is so important in this song because it shows the distance that taylor feels from the relationship now like it’s not ‘wind in my hair, i am there’ because it’s impossible to revisit those moments and live in them again
  • alternatively i feel like maybe it’s ‘i was there’ because it was her ‘old self’ that she mentions later who had all those beautiful lovely memories and she is not that girl anymore she ‘was’ but not now
  • i always thought that the description of ‘a little kid in glasses in a twin size bed’ is so sweet because it emphasises how big and lonely everything seemed when he was younger and how much growing he had to do
  • ‘you taught me ‘bout your past thinking your future was me’ is also so cute because he is teaching her so she can take over and write his future in the best possible way??? he is literally trusting her with his entire future???
  • ‘lost in translation’ is a beautiful way of saying that they could not communicate with each other but to me it has always meant that they could not adapt to each other’s worlds without losing an essential part of themselves much like when a book is adapted for film for example 
  • now for my favourite line of the whole song okay ‘but maybe this thing was a masterpiece before you tore it all up’ is so interesting because it brings into question beauty and value and whether something is only beautiful for as long as you can own it and it is tangible, like an old famous painting, for example, or whether it remains valuable and precious long after it is destroyed because it is the thoughts and people it inspired that had true value. this idea is revisited in sad beautiful tragic when taylor seems to decide that something can be beautiful and ruined simultaneously and that things do not cease to be beautiful when they are over (just like those autumn leaves falling earlier in the song)
  •  this song is just full of powerful images and ‘a crumpled up piece of paper lying there’ is so interesting because a piece of blank paper holds so many possibilities it is literally a symbol of untapped potential so the idea of her being a crumpled up piece of paper suggests all that potential between them being discarded all those pages of their love story that will now forever remain unwritten
  • this is a tiny thing but the repetition in the line that follows of ‘but i remember it all, all, all… too well’ just to me feels like taylor being trapped in the moment unable to move forwards to the next word and mirrors her being trapped in her grief about this relationship

robspanther  asked:

I read your blog every day, thank you! In the original Japanese, is there a nuance that the English translation might have missed? "I too have never encountered someone like yourself". Thanks in advance.


“I too have never encountered someone like yourself” is a perfect (& literal) translation, there’s no nuance that got lost in it! :)

This line indeed caused a little confusion in the JP fandom, too, since Sebastian did encounter Bizarre Dolls at least twice in the past, but I personally think you can interpret this line in two different ways:

1) real Ciel is indeed not a “Bizarre Doll” but something different

2) real Ciel is a “Bizarre Doll” and what Sebastian actually meant is that he never encountered someone like real Ciel who managed to come back after his soul was eaten and even complained to Sebastian like “Bitch, how dare you do that to me that day”.

Personally, I still stand by my theory that real Ciel is an advanved model of Undertaker’s BDs (the “ultimate BD” he was talking about in ch84), so my interpretation of Sebastian’s line is the latter one! :D

Also another thing I want to point out is that in Weston arc Sebastian noticed that something was “off” with Agares,

but he wasn’t sure if he’s a BD or not until Agares’s true nature was revealed.

So I very much doubt that Sebastian is able to right away recognise a BD as such and that’s why I personally regard the former interpretation rather unlikely (I mean, how can Sebastian state that real Ciel is not a BD when he can’t even tell living humans and advanced BDs like Agares apart??).

EDIT: @midnight-in-town

Sorry for the confusion, by “ultimate BD” I meant this “reanimated corpse infinitely approaching a living human” UT was talking about in ch84! xD

Alright, who’s ready for an effortpost?

So, latest LWA episode.  Very cute.  Lots of little nods like the boot-hat the Headmistress was showing off being her father’s missing boot, etc.  But what’s bothering me is that people are dismissing this as a pointless filler episode when, in reality, it pretty much spelled out the core message of the series.

Little Witch Academia is, at its core, Trigger’s defense of their own art.  A lot of people complain how absurd it is that magic in this setting is both looked at with such disdain and seems so arbitrarily confined -for example, requiring batteries or not being able to use magic off school grounds- but its worth remembering that magic is analogous to 2d animation.

Let’s look at the way outsiders view magic– as a pointless diversion, something kids are enamored with, something showy and with no real substance.  Look at the way people, even outside the elitism of Luna Nova, shrug off Akko’s idolization of Chariot.  Think about how Fafnir, who is pretty blatantly a financial sector bigwig, no longer sees magic as something economically feasible, and has instead turned his attention to pursuits like the stock market or trying to be a loan shark.

There’s also a lot to be said about how stagnant and conservative the world of magic (animation) is, and how Akko ultimately is playing the role of an enthusiastic reformer.  It should be pretty overt that the elitist and xenophobic magical community is based in the West, with almost every named character being white, whereas Akko is an enthusiastic Japanese kid, with no family legacy in the art form discipline.

Hell, we can even see Trigger validating their own habit of going off-model, in contrast to the static and rigid styles that other studios tend to lean towards.  Consider Luna Nova’s attempt to woo the Earl of Hambridge, showing him that magic was still a worthwhile endeavor to bankroll, and how absurd and silly their ‘traditional’ display looked to an outsider, whether it was the Earl or the audience.

Hell, try showing your parents some contemporary anime.

I arbitrarily picked this one off the first page of /a/.  Look at the blush, the tiny mouth, the speck nose, the shading and use of color.  Try to explain to someone outside the subculture that’s evolved around anime and manga why every show that’s produced has a similar artistic style.  If you can come up with a persuasive argument beyond ‘that’s the way things are done in the artistic community’, let me know.

Compare and contrast to the frequently off-model nature of LWA, or of another great show from the past year, Mob Psycho 100.  A good analysis of MP100′s use of off-model animation can be found here.

But consider the contrast between the ‘traditional’ show of magic, of 2d animation, to an outside force, to prove that its worthwhile, and Trigger’s showing, or Akko’s display to Andrew.

Its spirited,

Untraditional, it has an almost Disney vibe to it.

Similarly, Akko and her idol, Shiny Chariot take a similar approach to magic.  Showy, enthusiastic, bright, and colorful.  You could argue that Chariot’s magic performance, either the one shown in the initial OVA or in the first episode of the TV series, has little actual substance, much in the same way that LWA as a series doesn’t have much of an overarching plot so far, but to do so really misses the point.

There’s a lot of negativity stewing around Andrew as a character, and its not all completely unfounded.  In a lot of ways, he feels out of place.  He’s the only young, attractive male character in a predominately female series, he serves as a weird sort of ship bait, he seems cool and collected and smug, and Luna Nova’s witches trip over themselves trying to appease him.

Worth keeping in mind that Little Witch Academia started as an entry into Anime Mirai 2013, where animation studios were competing for talent and grants from major financial government institutions.  The symbolism is pretty overt.

But returning to episode 9, there’s the question of why this is important.  Why is the shaggy dog story of the Headmistress and her inane pseudo-pirate father so important?  The dominant question is, in a world of technological advancement, where animation is falling by the wayside and being replaced by things like, say, CGI, why does it still matter?  What still makes magic, what still makes animation, worth studying?

Akko’s answer has always been ‘inspiration’.  We can see this both in Diana and Akko’s character– they’re inspired by Shiny Chariot.  They want to go into magic because they’re so wowed.  But that’s a very slim answer.  If the only reason animation is worthwhile is because other people might get interested in animation, that’s a pretty circular argument.

So, episode 9 introduces us to another rationale why animation is worth studying– it brings the dead back to life and gives us a chance to right wrongs, to explain mistakes, and find peace.  Or, more accurately, like other forms of art, it grants us the chance to renegotiate and reanalyze the things of the past we never got closure with.  Consider James Merrill’s poem, Lost in Translation, where as a child he literally tries piecing together the puzzle of what’s going on around him, to be caught with a missing piece that he spends the rest of his life trying to find again, returning to that puzzle, to that memory, and trying to fit the pieces back together.

More pertinently, consider another Japanese animated film, Cat Soup.  The creator of the manga committed suicide in 1998, and her husband made the film.  Its a stupendous piece of art, both from a technical and thematic standpoint, but we see a similar situation here that we do in Merrill’s work or in Miranda’s reunion with her dead father.

Art can bring us closure.  It can help us write a eulogy for those who’ve left us, or sooth our worries.  It doesn’t just inspire, but it heals, too.

And that’s why episode 9 is good and I’m tired and this post sucks, okay.

Depth of Cloud’s Grief


kanojo no shi ga amarini mo kanashikute , sono imi o shiroto shinakatta .

“Her death was too sad, and [ I ] couldn’t understand.”

(Dismantled,  p.175)

Cloud says this after learning the meaning of Aerith’s death. I know it’s pretty obvious that Aerith’s death was heartbreaking for Cloud, but I find it really sweet and incredibly sad that Cloud admits that he couldn’t understand the meaning of Aerith’s actions because her death was so sad it was all he could really focus on. 

[ Note: Also, the above translation is my own and translated very literally. To me, it sounds childish to phrase the sentence “her death was too sad”, while that’s the literal translation, I would rather translate the connotation of the sentence, which is along the lines of “I was so sad after losing Aerith that I couldn’t understand the meaning of her sacrifice”. To me, that’s the more accurate translation because it sounds less childish. Shippers might get angry if you don’t use literal translations, but IMO you can use either. ]

We see this repeated in the original game as well as Maiden of the Planet.

Cloud: …Shut up.
The cycle of nature and your stupid plan don’t mean a thing.
Aerith is gone.

Cloud tells Sephiroth that his plan to destroy the entire planet didn’t matter anymore simply because Aerith was now dead. To me, this has always indicated that Aerith was what Cloud loved most and now that she was taken from him, he saw no point in continuing on with the battle to save the planet.

There’s also this quote that shows Cloud started to close himself off from the others after losing Aerith:

[ ティファ:ガスト博士の家で]

Tifa: “From that point on [from Aerith’s death], Cloud became reticent. He wasn’t very talkative before, but now during the trip north, he only talks if it’s absolutely necessary. I can’t [seem to] console Cloud.* He didn’t just lose Aerith, a piece of him also seems lost…..”

(Dismantled,  p.167)

[* My own translation again—literally, she has no words for him, but the meaning of Tifa’s words is that she can’t console him so that’s what I went with so it sounds better.]

Then in Maiden of the Planet, we see Aerith consumed by Cloud’s heartbreak.

But a cry came through to her.

It wasn’t the sound of her cry. If it was then she would have felt the blood gushing up through her throat and the fury that forced its way out from the depths of her soul - It was the sound of Cloud’s heart cracking. It was the cry of his heart that could never be healed of the grief he had towards Aerith’s death, the blame towards himself and the hatred he had for Sephiroth.

She was surprised at the great sorrow he had for her. She was a little happy that he thought so much of her but she also felt the pain that was many times greater. There was nothing she could do about Cloud’s suffering and the pain ached in her heart.

The pain continued even though she was in the Lifestream.

At the moment that Aerith died, it wasn’t her own pain of losing her life that she felt most, it wasn’t the pain from any of the other millions of people on the planet—it was Cloud’s pain that was so strong that it was all she could feel, even during her own death.

To me, that has always been so telling. For Cloud’s pain to be the only thing she could feel at that moment means that no other feeling from humanity was nearly as strong. And then to make it even more sad, even though she was in the Lifestream, because of Cloud’s suffering, Aerith’s heart ached in pain.

Anyway, Cloud’s heartbreak over losing Aerith is really sad and I hope we get to see this and so much more executed in the remake.

So this post by mswyrr asked me about this scene of The Handmaiden, in which the English translates Lady Hideko’s line to, “Sookhee, are you worried about me? // I’m worried about you.”

The Korean line here was, going off memory, “숙희야, 넌 내가 걱정돼? // 난 네가 걱정돼.”

Although the translation isn’t wrong, per se, it’s definitely missing its mark a little. More below the read more:

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If you’re going to translate fic into another language, you need to do so with the explicit permission from the original author. End of story. 

It doesn’t matter if you give them credit. A no is a no, and you should go ahead and take a non-answer as a no as well. We work really hard –for free– to write these fics, and even though this is the internet and nothing is safe, just take a second and have some respect for the wishes of those who create the stories that you love. I know it’s probably frustrating and people want to read in other languages, but you’re not doing anyone any “favors” if you don’t have permission. It’s not a favor at that point, it’s just taking our words and remolding them. 

Some things get lost or misunderstood in translation –literally. And for writers, our words are carefully chosen and arranged in a certain order. These words are a part of us, little pieces of us. What you’re doing is taking our words that we’ve agonized over, breaking them down, and making them your own. Some writers are okay with this, and some are not. And I guess you don’t “have” to respect that, no one can force you to respect that, but I ask you to please stop translating without explicit permission.

Honestly. The first time I heard the ‘up dog’ thingy, I fell for it since I was so lost in translation. I had literally never heard that term before but the guys I lived with in England found it really fun to ask me about ‘up dog’ and I just ??????
Until our kind Polish friend decided to tell me what the heck was going on.

gsnk 76 (according to my sleep-deprived non-Japanese brain)

  • So. Mikorin gets invited to a group date of some sorts, right. And Mikorin can’t escape (he wants to escape, lol). But they need one more guy, so Mikorin goes “LET ME INVITE A PERSON” because this is his chance. He can get Nozaki and he won’t be so awkward around girls.
  • Except Chiyo explains why it’s a Bad Idea.

“THAT’S WHY!!! You can’t bring Nozaki-kun so bring Mayu-kun instead!”

“EH?! He was here this whole time?!”

  • Mikorin thinks Mayu is a good choice too.
  • “Do you want to have a meal with your Mikoshiba’nii-san?”
  • I literally lost my energy to understand everything else wow MIKOSHIBA NII-SAN WOW

someone translate this for me pls

Pegasus rubbing salt in the wound

So @magicinflames and I have been rewatching YGO, mostly just having it on the background. We just got to Seto vs Pegasus and realised that Pegasus is even more of an asshole than I ever gave him credit for. So of course we went and checked the manga as the line this is copied from isn’t in the DM anime.

So first I checked the English scanlations online… which of course the two lines are nothing alike - which I can understand as they’re some 50+ chapters apart and Viz probably had more than one translator? - although the intention wasn’t entirely right but that’s a rant for another time… (-looks at Viz’s translation of Seth)

Right at the end of Seto vs Pegasus’ duel, Seto just having lost, we get this: (highlighted is the important part!)

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Official Pikkuri Sticker Information 

 Kouen Ren: 

 "While he is the first imperial prince of the Kou Empire, he also serves as the western invasion commander-in-chief. He is the master of three djinns, and he turns into a red lion that pushes through the battlefield, following the path of a king, governing with authority and might (覇道). Whenever he’s not fighting wars, he spends his time idling away. He thinks his goatee suits him.“ 

Note: I was lost how to translate the sentence in italic. The literal translation that I came up with is: ‘he transforms into a red lion, running through the path of one uniting the country and governing it with authority and might’. After doing some research on (覇道=military rule), I found that it’s a traditional concept in Chinese regions and in Japan that’s often mentioned along with ‘王道=royal road’. According to a dictionary on a Japanese site: 

 覇道 (Hadou)=the path of one uniting the country and trying to govern it by authority and might (path of might) 

 王道 (Oudou)=the path of one governing the country by morals (path of right)

It seems many countries in the world of Magi represent the concept of ‘覇道=rule of might’. Along with Kou, there’s Sasan, Reim, Parthevia and Heliohapt. On a cover of Sunday-S, young Sinbad was described that he was following the path of might (should’ve guessed from his moniker ‘七海の覇王=as the high king of the seven seas’) The only countries that could be examples of ‘王道=rule of right’ are Imuchakk and Qishan after Jamil. Probably Reim will follow this path as well with the help of Titus. 

From what I understood, though the rule of right is widely preferred among the Japanese, the rule of might isn’t necessarily considered evil, some could argue it has its merits and is necessary sometimes. I’m not really a history expert, so a better explanation or translation is welcome. 

As for Kouen himself, I did some research and found posts from the time before the battle with the Medium when his sticker came out. There were speculations that one of his djinn equips resembles a lion. He also earned the nickname ‘赤獅子=red lion’. There are also some funny fanart based on that sentence from his sticker profile.

I’d recognize you anywhere:
Cognizant city. How I loved your
Brass jazz heartbeat. Like the
Finality of a grandfather clock.
Greek myth. Touched by the Gods;
How I loved your Ancient Ruin
Like the thought I could rebuild you.
Sun-kissed monument. Cathexis of
Divine. How I loved your holiness
Like the promise of ascension.
The travel-list in my journal
The pictures in my postcards.
There you are.

At the street-side coffee shop,
Leaving your ink fingerprints like
A signature on espresso cups.
Under the corner lamp post
Sharp gasoline and crisp cold,
Words like secondhand smoke.
I found you in the old brass key to
the forgotten rib cage inside me
In the map on the table between us
The pinpoints of places you’ve visited
In the lavender sprigs and twine
These weary gilded bones of mine
In the tea leaves burned at Midnight,
The pages of a book I stayed up to read
The parts lost in translation
Kohl’d eyelids and bloody brows
Saltwater tears and vintage globes
Scissors over cradles, scrap of red string,
Magnifying glasses in old drawers,
Wilted bouquet on the windowsill
Empty wineglass, bird in flight
Pearls. Abalone. Kitchen knife.
Smile, smirk, rictus. Burnt matches.
Candle smoke, polaroids, silver rings
Outdated stamps. Dead letters.
Honey jar and mint leaves. Sing.
Whistle. Hum. The bottom of my lungs
My heart in your throat
I recognize you everywhere.
—  KelleyAnn Elyse, La Douleur Exquise: (French expression)Literally, exquisite sadness; meaning denotes the terrible pain of wanting someone or something you can’t have.

So Gackt has changed his Instagram bio again, and it now contains the Japanese sentence, “人生花の如く、だな。” (jinsei hana no gotoku, da na.)

Which is a nice little example of how even a short sentence can get lost in translation. Literally, it’s something like “Life is like a flower, y'know?” Which, if you said to someone with not much experience with Japanese culture, they’d probably interpret as “Life is pretty and colorful and to be celebrated”. Or something.

Looking at it a little closer, the first half of the sentence is in Classical Japanese, as we can tell by the use of ~no gotoku instead of ~no you ni. For comparison, a proverb that uses almost the same grammatical structure is 光陰矢の如し (kouin ya no gotoshi)- literally “Light and shadow (i.e. day and night) are like an arrow”, but figuratively “Time flies like an arrow”.

Which means we should also be interpreting 花 (flower) in the same way that it was in Classical Japanese literature. Rule #1 of Japanese poetry, unless otherwise specified, “flowers” are cherry blossoms. And cherry blossoms signify transience and things that cannot last.

So a literal translation is “Life is like a flower,” but a translation that actually conveys his intended meaning would be more like “Life’s short (so go do stuff)”.

(Except more poetic.)

On Victuuri’s airport scene and the words they exchanged

I’ve always thought of the Japanese language as the language of the heart. Every word spoken carries the speaker’s thoughts, representing their soul. One of the things that made Victuuri’s airport scene so special, apart from their longing gaze for each other and their heart-warming hug despite everyone watching, was the few words they said at the end, when Yuuri asked Victor to be his coach until he retires.

I don’t think that’s all there is to it though.

Here, what Yuuri said was 「引退まで、僕のことお願いします!」. He used the phrase ‘onegaishimasu’, and how much should I emphasize this - it’s a phrase that more often than not gets lost in translation. ‘Onegaishimasu’ literally means ‘[I beg of you,] please do this for me’, and is very commonly used in daily conversations. You say this when you’ve just met someone and hope to get along well with them. You say this when you need someone to help you out with work. Lovers also use this phrase; simply put, it’s like ‘Please continue to love me.’

‘Please continue to love me until I retire.’

Which, I think, explains Victor’s reply.

(!!!!! Yuuri looks at Victor tenderly, then pulling him into a hug once again)

Before Victor’s reply, Yuuri’s look might have meant that he was content with having Victor by his side, even if things will end with his retirement. But with Victor wishing Yuuri would never retire, it was like…

It was like he wished they could stay in love forever.

And I believe that was what put Yuuri in tears. That Victor would stay close to him no matter what.

I’m not good at writing these kinda thing so I’ll just sum up what I’ve been trying to convey through this post:

  1. Yuuri hopes that Victor would love him until he retires.
  2. Victor wants to love him forever.
  3. Yuuri cries because he secretly wants to be with VIctor too.
It’s literally “I feel melancholy,” but in France it means “My soul is in the waves.” I’ve been learning French a bit through my work with Longchamp and I’ve been in France quite a lot. And I really love how they express themselves. I especially love when something is untranslatable. That’s what someone said about “J’ai du vague à l’âme.” I asked, “How do you say it in English?” And they said, “You don’t really have it, it’s unexplainable.” It’s often emotional things, so I was just really drawn to that idea that there’s this chasm that exists between countries where there are some things that are literally lost in translation. Like, does that mean we don’t feel the same way? Because we’ve never had a need to make a phrase around that in the same way that they did? I really like that. Also, if you’re looking at it the wrong way, it just looks like you’re wearing a sweatshirt that says “vague” and “lame.
—  Alexa Chung speaking about a sweatshirt and somehow all of my interests

ANASTASIAOFRP makes a Masterlist - Words that have no English Translation - requested by anon

↳ As a native English speaker who speaks other languages, I find it difficult translating other languages to English, often finding that the word they use doesn’t quite exist in the English language.

Here is a list of (40) words in other languages that have no English Translation - but are explained to the best of an English speaker’s ability.

Labeled 1-40, includes the word, the native language of the word, and a description or translation of the word.

Enjoy under the cut.

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