No Push, No Pull, Yes Chinglish…!?

OK, then get me out of here! I’m stuck… in a place where I can neither pull nor push a — freakin’ door!

This bit of classical Chinglish finds itself on a folding door. It’s unique in that it can’t be “operated” like a regular door. You’ve got to pull a little handle or “fold” the thing.

Worst still is where they decided to stick the thing. In the toilets. Just when your butt’s about to explode, you have to get through these first. The result is a huge stink and the stuff that I can’t blog here about — on the floor.

I’d favour the ones on the train where you push a button to open the door, then push another one to close it and then let go of your lobster that your stomach had a kernel panic on…

Taken May 2011 in Beijing

Self-Servicing Yourself to Some Italian Chinglish Tickets…

Un po’ d’italiano here in the city of the West Lake, Hangzhou — the Self-servico Ticket Office

Trouble is, for the average expat without a second-generation PRC ID card, these machines in that office laden with Chinglish are — well, just there to be seen. And not used. Somewhat skanky rules in effect as of 1 June 2011 dictate that only PRC ID card holders are allowed the luxury of buying train tickets from anyone other than a live human being (as in: a ticket machine).

And nope, counter to what the icon says, the machine doesn’t really like you sticking in all these coins to get your deluxe HSR ticket.

Too bad that these machines have “died” for us expats.

Too bad still for the Chinglish…

What It Should Read: Self-Service Ticket Office
Taken June 2011 in Hangzhou

Yes-sir-ee… It’s THE Toilet. THE Chinglish Toilet…

There can only be one Presidential Palace in the whole of China — even if it belongs to a former regime on the mainland.

And in that vein, there can only be one toilet in that very same palace.


See what I mean? The extra “the” makes it look a little… well, don’t you think that extra “the” is a the a tad too the “superfluous”? Doesn’t it make itself appear a little too… well, self-important?

“Well, folks, you will now be headed to the toilet. The toilet. Remember, it’s The toilet…”

What It Should Read: Toilet
Taken June 2011 in Nanjing, Jiangsu

Tlatform? Flatform? Railway Station Chinglish Fall Flat on Its Face…

This fair bit of Chinglish is from Yuquan, just southeast of Harbin, in a part of Heilongjiang where I am sure there is no living expat.

And yet they insist on sticking some English at the train station.

OK, that kind of works, but I’d hope it was good or stuff. Ah well — Chinglish as usual…

Funnier still: they seem to have modified the Chinglish. Probably what they had there first was ENTRY OF FLATFORM NO. 2. Seeing their English attempt fell flat on the head, they then proceeded to mod it as the entry to TLATFORM 2.

Still Chinglish.

Ah well. They’re making an effort…

What It Should Read: ENTRY TO PLATFORM 2
Taken July 2011 in Yuquan, Heilongjiang

Heilongjiang’s Model of Civilized Chinglish Windows…?

To Heilongjiang, an uncivilized window would be one where it’d be dirty, rotten, smashed, and full of obnoxious Chinglish.

Either that, or…

At times, the Chinglish here can just be amazing. If all you are reduced to doing in the “provincial tourist profession” is the creation of “models of civilized windows”… then…

Hey, here’s one thing I hope Heilongjiang and in particular, Harbin, can make a little better: “rail things”. Such as a get a proper HSR in order and connect the city with the Metro.

Makes far more sense than doing your models of civilized windows…

Taken July 2011 in Harbin, Heilongjiang

Carrefour Chinglish: What A Laughathon!

My wife and I had a field day during our first Carrefour adventure. The Chinglish was just awesome. Let’s just go through a few…

  • Check Points: Null problemo…
  • Good condition of the window: OK, like no scratches or stuff…
  • Trolley in anti-device kept: Here’s where it looks a tad odd… What on earth is, say, an anti-device? An anti-tank device?… And how the heck you do stick a trolley in that thing?
  • No trouble maker outside: No traitors, no cheaters, no con men, no members of banned “evil royal fetish” cults, and definitely no roaches. Am I right? Or just how do you define a “troublemaker”?
  • Patrol Equipment Don’s touch! Hey, get Patrol Don here. He’s supposed to give his touch of blessing on the thing!…

What It Should Read: Check Points
1. Window in good condition
2. Trolley safely stowed; anti-theft devices in working order
3. Proper order outside the store
Patrol Equipment – Do Not Touch!

Taken August 2011 in Beijing

Ramping Slowly to the Tune of… Chinglish

To do Chinglish right in a car park, not only do you have to roll up the ramp slowly, but you also have to — ramp slowly.

As in — make the ramp thingy a verb…

Either that, or it probably means that it is a slow ramp. Aaargh… Too bad if you’re in a rush. You’re being told to ramp slowly!

What It Should Read: Slow Down on Ramp
Taken August 2011 in Beijing

Vaguelish: “Vegetable”… OK, Which Kind?

Uhh, yeah… and while I might have sympathies for those who unfortunately are vision impaired, at least I can fully well see that this thing that the label’s clinging onto is a vegetable.

It doesn’t look like anything else. Like, say — oh well, this being a David Feng blog — a train ticket.

The thing is, what kind of a vegetable is this? There are loads of them. I’m picking a few off my favourites list: broccoli, cauliflower… carrot? (My wife’s always in the kitchen. I’m no cook!)

Rather than being vague (and making the expats store Jenny Lou’s look odd), the label might grow a little extra brains and tell folks what the heck the thing is — oh wait. That looks like spinach…

So say it’s spinach! On the label…

What It Should Read: Vegetable
Taken summer 2011 in Beijing

Beijing Chinglish for an Audience of “Foreignets”…

The cartoon police has dictated that the three things in blue type are prohibited!

The language police has also decreed that the presence of obnoxious Chinglish ought to be prohibited!

When the cops mix the expatriates with magnets — foreignets — they either think of the drug dealers off Sanlitun coming in as a magnet for weirdness and criminal acts — or they might have just pulled this one wrong as a typo.

I’m pleased to be a law-abiding foreign magnet (“foreignet”), though. And I hope every last “foreignet” can be one as well. Including the drug traffickers. Even Enimem said it pretty well… short ‘n’ snappy: DON’T DO DRUGS.

What It Should Read: Foreigners
Taken June 2011 in Beijing