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asked 12 Oct '11, 22:39

Vincent%20Buck's gravatar image

Vincent Buck

edited 12 Oct '11, 22:40

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Steel industry meeting:

Original: .... Warmbreitbandstrasse.... ( hot-rolled coil line; laminoir/train à large bande, laminoir pour coils à chaud)

Interprète: Les lamineurs qui bandent largement à chaud.

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answered 28 Oct '11, 00:52

Vincent%20Buck's gravatar image

Vincent Buck

Presentation about an Austrian company's logistics department:

Original: In dieser Halle werden die Packmittel gelagert. (gesprochen mit weichem P = B)

Dolmetscher: En esta nave almacenamos las levaduras. (missverstanden als Backmittel = Backtriebmittel)

Because of the Austrian accent, the interpreter (more used to German from Germany) mistook Packmittel (i.e. Verpackungsmaterial or packaging materials) for Backmittel (baking soda).

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answered 02 Nov '11, 10:35

Oliver's gravatar image


Context: Press Conference Lisbon 1993 Ytzak Rabin talking about DOPs.

Previous 3 days of preparation had not uncovered this specific acronym. But...eureka...I managed to crack it. I was so colleague kept bumping my elbow and the press was looking back to me looking very puzzled.

I shut the microphone and colleague said: "repeat after me: israelitas e palestinianos". I did. 3 times. I put the mike back on.
For several minutes I had twisted the words and had been saying "israelanos e palestinitas" which 1) do not exist, 2) sound wrong, 3)could be construed either as taking sides or insulting both. It was not picked up in the press. Ouf!

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answered 02 Nov '11, 11:34

potdecolle's gravatar image


This has happened to me, too: I have been caught saying "Bulgary and Hungaria" instead of "Hungary and Bulgaria"! ;)

(09 Nov '11, 16:01) Michelle

Original: We know that the austerity measures will hurt...

Said: Uns ist klar, dass diese Spaßmaßnahmen einschneidend sind...

Thank God it was only during practice.

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answered 27 Nov '11, 11:20

Matt's gravatar image


Didn't happen to me but to this colleague of mine who luckily gave me a warning before handing over. Context: Italian racing carmaker, lightweight construction, special material (carbon fibre reinforced plastic), brief guided tour of the factory

Speaker: And this is where we eat the plastic.
Interpreter: You eat the plastic?

Speaker: Yes - ere we eat the plastic in the HOVEN.
Interpreter deadpan: Und hier wird also der Kunststoff erhitzt.

Not exactly a blooper but still makes me smile.

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answered 03 Feb '12, 17:07

Tanja's gravatar image


edited 04 Feb '12, 04:02

Context: an EU Coucil of Ministers WP meeting, about ten years ago

Interpreter: senior staff colleague, not very computer literate

Original: Chairman, I think we can easily solve that with some cut & paste

Rendered as: Voorzitter, dat kunnen we makkelijk oplossen met wat katoenpasta

(= .. we can easily solve that with some cotton paste)

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answered 30 Mar '12, 06:16

modcommie's gravatar image


edited 30 Mar '12, 06:18


+1 You reminded me of another very senior colleagues over two decades ago who did not quite know what to make of "a (software) program running under DOS and Windows". French delegates listening to the translation did not quite know what to think of "un programme avec portes et fenêtres".

(30 Mar '12, 06:28) Vincent Buck

Bericht über einen Dialog mit einem Straftäter vor dessen gewaltsamer Ergreifung

Original: „… qu’il n’allait pas se rendre…“

Dolmetscher: “… dass er sich nicht übergeben wolle…”

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answered 05 Apr '12, 05:28

ycpelz's gravatar image


edited 05 Apr '12, 05:29

Context: day 5 of a tough IT conference,lightening-speed speaker.

Speaker: Well, I guess I'll show you ten more slides and then we'll take a break.

Interpreter: Bueno, entonces les cuento diez mentiras mas y luego tomamos una pausa.
("Well, I'll guess I'll tell you ten more lies....")

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answered 12 May '12, 07:19

Tezajovy's gravatar image


Original: In Österreich ist der Schwangerschaftsabbruch bis zur 12. Woche gesetzlich erlaubt.

Interprète: En Autriche, la loi autorise le viol(*) jusqu'à la 12ème semaine.

(*) Had been the subject of the previous session...

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answered 28 Oct '11, 00:44

Vincent%20Buck's gravatar image

Vincent Buck

Contexte: crédits à l'exportation en Afrique 10am.
Orateur français: "notre politique de crédits à l'exportation au Kontgut (c'est ce que j'ai entendu/visualisé) va se maintenir dans les dix prochaines années..."
Orateur belge:"notre politique de crédits à l'exportation au Kontgut (décidemment je suis nulle en géographie, je connais pas la contrée en question) va se maintenir dans les dix prochaines années..."
après la pause midi, la collègue m'écrit gentiment: compte-goutte. TATA!!!!

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answered 02 Nov '11, 11:05

potdecolle's gravatar image


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question asked: 12 Oct '11, 22:39

question was seen: 18,333 times

last updated: 12 May '12, 07:19 is a community-driven website open to anyone with questions and/or answers about interpreting, i.e. spoken language translation

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