2012年11月14日 星期三

讀者文摘專輯第十二集(22則)




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O Study after study has documented that when women have the opportunity to start business, own land, and receive credit ... entire economies expand.    Hillary Clinton    (RD2014, March., p.97)
許多文獻都有記載說,根據一再的研究結果顯示,如果給予女性們創業的機會,讓她們也可擁有田產,銀行也肯給予信用授信,等等,那麼我們整個經濟一定會繁榮起來。
【譯註】這句話是美國前總統克林頓的夫人希拉蕊說的。可見在美國社會上女性還是受到許多不合理限制。
 
O Gym flunkie
Joining the gym is amazing - such an invigorating way to start the day! Waking up at 7 am and deciding not to go is such a great feeling.    Nat Luurtsema     (RD2014, March., p.53)
報名參加健身房實在有夠棒--可以讓一天有個活力充沛的開始。你只要在7點起床,然後決定不去健身房,這感覺就有夠棒了。
 
O Back to the drawing board
I've just finished my new time machine. Still got a few teething problems, though. So far I can only go forwards in time, and only very slowly.    (RD2014, March., p.52)
我剛完成一部新的時光機;但是有一點小問題,就是它只能往未來而去,而且速度奇慢。
【譯註】這種時光機誰也會做--其實甚麼都不用做,你自然而然就會隨著時間的流逝往未來而去。
 
O Internet security
My wife was checking her emails and told me that her password was  "mickeyminniebatmanrobintomjerryLondon". I asked her why it needed to be so long.
"Because," she replied, "I was told it had to have at least six characters and one capital."     (RD2014, March., p.53)
我太太在查看電子郵件時告訴我說,她設定的密碼是「米奇 米妮 蝙蝠俠 羅賓 湯姆 傑利 倫敦」。我問她為甚麼要用這麼長的密碼。她回答說:「因為電腦要求說必須至少用六個人物(characters)及一個首都(capital)啊。」
【譯註】其實電腦要求的是六個「字母(characters)」,其中一個字母要「大寫(capital)」。
 
O Post posture
I got a letter in the post the other day. It said, "Do not bend."
So I thought, How am I supposed to pick it up?    Lee Mack    (RD2014, March., p.53)
前幾天我從信箱取出一封信,信封上寫著:「請勿折彎(bend)。」
我在想:我不彎腰(bend)怎麼拿得到信啊?
 
O Smart shopper
A man approaches a very beautiful woman in a large supermarket and says, "I've lost my wife in the aisles. Would you mind talking to me for a couple of minutes?"
"Why?" the woman replies.
"Because every time I speak to a pretty lady, my wife appears out of nowhere."    (RD2014, March., p.52)
在大賣場裡,有一個男人走近一個非常漂亮的女人說:「我跟我太太在走道之間走失了,妳可不可以跟我講幾分鐘的話?」
那女人說:「幹嘛?
「因為每次我跟漂亮女士講話,我太太就會馬上憑空出現。」


O When the Washington Post challenged its readers to supply alternate meanings for any word in the dictionary, entries included:
Coffee (n): A person who is coughed upon.
Flabbergasted (adj): to be appalled over how much weight you have gained.
Balderdash (n): A rapidly receding hairline.
Esplanade (v): To attempt an explanation while drunk.     (RD2014, March., p.51)
 
O The most dangerous phrase in the English language is, "We've always done it this way."    Grace Hopper     (RD2014, Feb., p.97) 
英語中最危險的一句話就是:「我們一向就是這麼幹的。
 
O Historically speaking, cats unlike dogs, have not been domesticated to obey humans' orders. Rather, they seem to take the initiative in human-cat interaction.    University of Tokyo researchers     (RD2014, Feb., p.97)
從歷史上來說,貓和狗不同在於:貓從未被馴養到完全服從人類的指令。相反地,在人貓互動關係上,貓似乎常扮演主動的角色。
 
 
 


O How can it be that it is not news when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses two points?     Pope Francis      (RD2014, Feb., p.97)
為甚麼一個流浪老人凍死街頭不是新聞,而股票指數下降兩點就是新聞?


O Rent realities
Let's face it: Paying rent is a hassle. "It's your fault," a tenant scolded one landlord when the tenant's cheque bounced. "Why didn't you tell me you were going to run to the bank the very same day?" Enjoy more real excuses from renters.       (RD2014, Feb., p.107)
談錢傷感情,交房租也一樣傷感情。有一個房客繳房租的支票被退票,他竟然去罵房東,說:「你怎麼沒告訴我當天就要把支票軋進去?」下面是房客們不繳房租的各樣藉口。
 
" You're only talking to me because the rent's not paid? Is that all I am to you? A tenant?"
 「你只有催收房租的時候才會跟我說話?你把我當甚麼?只是個房客?」
 
"We knew we wouldn't be able to pay next month's rent, so we decided to not pay this month's rent either."
「我們估計無法付下個月的房租,所以決定這個月的房租也不付了。」
 
"I'm getting really tired of paying this rent every damn month!"
「我實在煩透了每個月要繳這個鬼房租!」
 
"We'll pay you when we can. We're having a big party for my daughter's sweet 16 with her friends and had to buy a lot of beer."
「等我有錢的時候再說吧。最近我們要替我那十六歲的可愛女兒辦一個盛大的派對,邀請許多朋友,因此我們必須買一大堆的啤酒。」
 
"My dealer raised his prices again. You know how it goes."
「我的理專收費又漲了,你知道我的意思。」
 
"We're getting a refund on my wife's tattoo. This artist messed it up, and we're getting back most of the bucks!"
「最近我會拿到一筆退費,因為我老婆去紋身被紋得一團糟,我們要求退回大半的錢。」
 
"I won't be paying the rent for July. I can't give you any details, but we are going into the witness protection program."
「七月份的房租我沒辦法付。我不能告訴你細節,因為我們受到證人保護法的約束。」
 
O The myth of Icarus
The Greek island Icarus, also spelled Icaria, is said to be named after the mythological Icarus.
According to Greek legend, when Daedalus, a respected artisan, angered King Minos of Crete, he and his son, Icarus, were imprisoned in a labyrinth. In order for them to escape, Daedalus built wings from feathers and wax. He warned his son not to fly too close to the sun, in case the wax melted. Young Icarus disobeyed his father, his wings melted and he fell to the sea where the currents carried his body to an unnamed island. Hercules found it, recognized Icarus and buried him, naming the island after him.     (RD2014, Feb., p.103)
希臘小島伊卡魯,又稱伊卡利亞,據稱係因神話中的人物伊卡魯而得名。
根據希臘神話,戴達祿是一位手藝精巧的工匠,因為得罪了克里特島的國王邁諾斯,於是他跟兒子伊卡魯被囚禁在一處迷宮裡。為了脫逃,戴達祿用羽毛和蠟製造了兩對翅膀。他警告兒子不可以飛太高,以免太靠近太陽而使蠟熔化。伊卡魯沒聽父親的話,結果翅膀的蠟果然熔化,掉到海裡淹死,他的屍體被海流帶到一個無名島上。神話中的大力神赫虯力士發現了,認出那是伊卡魯的屍體,他將屍體埋了,並且將該島命名為伊卡魯


O Insoles don't help knee pain
Wedge-shaped insoles are a popular treatment for knee osteoarthritis. But in 12 studies involving 885 people with the condition, the inexpensive treatment, which transfers weight to a different part of the joint, didn't have much benefit. People felt better when they added any insole to their shoes, but it may have been a placebo.
"If you give one group nothing and one group something, then you see an effect," according to study auther Matthew Parkes of the University of Manchester in the UK.    (RD2014, Feb., p.20)
在鞋子裡墊一個楔形的鞋墊是處理膝關節炎最常用的方法。但12項研究的結果(包含885名患者)發現這種廉價的治療方法──利用鞋墊將體重負荷轉移到關節的其他部位──並沒有多少效果。有些裝了鞋墊的患者也許會感覺有效,但那可能只是心理作用罷了。研究人員說:「如果你給一組患者某些東西,而不給另一組患者任何東西,你將看到兩者總會有不同之處。」
 
O Fruits linked to lowered diabetes risk
Whole fruits, especially grapes, apples and blueberries, greatly lowered a person's risk of type 2 diabetes, but fruit juice is associated with an increased risk, according to dietary data from more than 180,000 Americans in three long-term health studies.
Why? Juices are digested more quickly than actual fruits. Also, juice's higher glycaemic load - a measure of the way a food or drink increases blood sugar- combined with a decrease in nutritients lost through the juicing process could be to blame, researchers said.     (RD2014, Feb., p.20)
根據三項長期的健康研究,搜集分析超過十八萬個美國人的飲食數據顯示,吃整粒的水果,尤其是葡萄、蘋果、和藍莓,可以大大降低罹患第二型糖尿病的機率;但只喝果汁卻適得其反。
為甚麼會這樣?研究人員指出,果汁比整粒水果消化迅速;其次,果汁的「升糖負荷」──這是食物或飲料升高血糖的一項指標──很高,而且,在果汁的製造過程當中,會流失許多營養素;這些都是喝果汁容易升高罹患第二型糖尿病風險的禍首。
 


O Bumbling employees
On a job-searching website, an employer wrote that a male employee phoned him to say he would be late because "his cervix was hurting." Here are more reasons for missing work that were test-driven by various (possibly former) employees who tried skipping the office.     (RD2014, Feb., p.108)
在一個求才的網站上,有一位老闆曾經寫說,他有個男性員工曾經打電話給他,說他上班會遲到,因為他「頸子(cervix)在痛」【譯註】。下面是更多的曠職或翹班的藉口--許多員工(或離職員工)都樂此不疲的藉口。
【譯註】Cervix這個字意思是「頸子」沒錯,但ㄧ般都是指「子宮頸」;這位男性員工顯然鬧笑話了。
 
"I forgot to come back to work after lunch."
「我吃完午餐後就忘了要回來上班。」
 
"A hit man was looking for me."
「有一個殺手在追殺我。」
 
"I am hellucinating."
「我正在嗑藥。」
 
"I've had a hair-dye disaster."
「我染髮染壞了,無臉見人。」
 
"My toe is trapped in the bathtub."
「我的腳趾頭卡在浴缸排水孔裡了。」
 
"My dog had a big fright,and I don't want to leave him."
「我的狗狗受到很大的驚嚇,我必須陪陪牠。」
 
"I drank too much and fell asleep on someone's floor. I don't know where I am."
「我喝得爛醉之後,躺在某人家的地板上睡著了,不知身處何處。」
 
"My fish is sick."
「我的魚病了。」
 
"My hamster died."
「我的天竺鼠死了。」
 
"My brain went to sleep, and I couldn't wake it up." 
「我的大腦睡著了,我叫不醒它。」


O If you retain nothing else, always remember the most important rule of beauty, which is: who cares?      Tina Fey    (RD2014, Feb., p.96) 
如果你留不住青春美麗,請永遠記住美的首要規則,就是:「美又怎樣?」
 
O Comic relief
My wife is a part-time barmaid and was having trouble with a rowdy male customer.
When he asked her the way to the toilets, she told him, "Go down that hallway and you'll see a door marked 'Gentlemen'. But don't let that deter you."      (RD2014, Feb., p.89) 
我太太在一間酒吧兼差,遇到一個鬧場的男性奧客。當他問她廁所在哪裡時,她說:「從那個走廊下去,你會看到一個門,上面標示著Gentlemen』(男廁)就是了;但你恐怕不能進去。
【譯註】Gentlemen原來是「紳士」的意思;而「奧客」不是紳士。


O Customer disservice
A co-worker at our car dealership was juggling a dozen different tasks when a customer phoned.
"Parts department," he said, "can you hold please?" 
The person on the other end obviously couldn't, because the next thing I heard was, "Then could you call back when you can hold?"    (RD2014, Feb., p.88)
我們汽車商行的一位同事正在忙得不可開交時,有個客戶打電話進來。
他說:「這裡是零件部,你能在線上等一等嗎?」
對方顯然不願意等,因為接下來我聽到的是:「那麼,你願意在線上等的時候,再打過來好嗎?」


O Verbatim dictation
As I hurried through the airport, I dictated a text message to my phone while wheeling my suitcase behind me. The phone got the dictation fine, but appended "kdkdkdkdkdkd" to the message - that being its interpretation of the sound of my suitcase wheels on the tiles.    (RD2014, Feb., p.88)
我在機場裡一邊拖著行李箱趕路,一邊用語音在我的電話輸入一則簡訊。電話很正確地解譯出我的語音,但夾雜著「喀噠喀噠喀噠」的字眼--原來那是我的行李箱在磁磚地板上拖行發出的聲音。


O Punography
What does a clock do when it's hungry? It goes back four seconds.
This girl said she recognised me from the vegetarian club, but I'd never met herbivore.
I tried to catch some fog. I mist.      (RD2014, Feb., p.64)
雙關語
一個時鐘肚子餓了會做甚麼?答:它會倒退四秒鐘。
【譯註】另外一種解讀:一個時鐘肚子餓了會做甚麼?它會回去拿第二盤食物。seconds意思是秒,也作第二盤食物解。
 
 
這個女孩說,她是在素食者俱樂部認識我的,但我從來沒見過這個草食動物。
【譯註】另外一種解讀:這女孩說,她是在素食俱樂部認識我的,但我從來沒看過她。met herbivore意思是見過這個草食動物,也可唸做met her before(見過她)。
 
我想要抓ㄧ些霧;結果我霧煞煞了。
【譯註】另外一種解讀:我想要抓ㄧ些霧,結果沒抓到。mist意思是霧煞煞,也與missed(漏失)同音。


O Safe Flying
Long-haul flights (four hours or more) can trigger the formation of blood clots, known as deep vein thrombosis, the condition that precedes a pulmonary embolism. Here's how to avoid them.
* While on the plane, a few minutes of low-intensity activity every two hours will boost circulation. Consider a quick walk up and down the aisle, or a simple flex-and-point excercise with your toes.
* Taking aspirin a half-hour before boarding can help thin the blood. Check with your doctor first.
* Stay hydrated. Drink fluids regularly during your flight and go easy on the booze.
* Watch your calves in the months following the trip. Any swelling could be the telltale sign of a clot.   (RD2014, Jan., p.94)
長途飛行(四小時以上)有可能引發血液凝塊的形成,就是所謂的「靜脈血栓症」,這是肺部栓塞症的前兆。下面告訴你如何避免此事發生。
* 坐飛機時,每兩小時作幾分鐘輕鬆的活動,將有助於血液循環。你可以在走道上來回快步走,或者讓腳趾頭來回活動一下。
* 登機前半小時服用阿斯匹靈可以降低你的血液濃度;但請事先請教醫師。
* 隨時補充水分。飛行途中要經常喝流體物質,或喝點小酒。
* 旅行之後幾個月內要注意觀察你的小腿肚;任何的腫脹現象都是血塊形成的徵兆。
 


O I'm not the easiest guy to get along with. So when our anniversary rolled around, I wanted my wife to know how much I appreciated her tolerating me for the past 20 years. I ordered flowers and told the florist to enclose a card that read, "Thanks for putting up with me so long."
When my wife got the delivery, she called me at work. "Where are you going?" she asked.
"What do you mean?" I said.
She read the card aloud as the florist had written it: "Thanks for putting up with me. So long."    (RD2014, Jan., p.107)
我不是一個好相處的人,所以我們結婚紀念日快到的時候,我決定要讓老婆知道,我多麼感謝她這二十年來對我的容忍。我訂了一束鮮花,並且要求花店的人附上一張卡片,上面寫道:「謝謝妳長久以來對我的容忍。」
當我老婆收到送來的花時,打電話給正在上班的我,問道:「你要去哪裡?」
我一頭霧水:「妳說甚麼?」
她大聲地唸花店送來的卡片上寫的:「謝謝妳對我的容忍。別了!」
【譯注】英文so long可解釋為「再見」。
 
 
 

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