This was taken in a supermarket in Utrecht, a city swarming with students and conference-goers where I imagine tons of people speak some English. This wonderful sign is of course tough to understand. You get to imagine a Chinese tourist trying to sort this out instead of a Brit. They could have simply left it in Dutch.
‘Borrelshop’ means absolutely nothing unless the person has some rudiments of Dutch. Liquour shop, booze corner, drinks & stuff, please give us something with a clue. That was sarcasm.
‘These is usual opened’ deserves an entire paragraph of explaining, but do I have to?
‘Report this’, report what? It sounds like a police station. I’ll pass.
Being a fan of shameless plugs and all, allow me to point you to a serious article I wrote in Dutch (don’t get too excited it was corrected by a real pro) about small Dutch businesses communicating in English.
Tags: alcohol, supermarket, Utrecht
September 16th, 2008 at 7:48 pm
Even the Dutch is a little wonky. Wat moet ik nu precies bij de servicebalie melden zodat men voor mij klaar staat?
September 17th, 2008 at 10:42 am
Ik ben het met Larry eens. ‘Deze is gewoon geopend’ ?
Hoezo deze? Kan het ook ongewoon geopend zijn? Bedoeld men niet ‘We zijn gewoon open’.
De Englese vertaling lijkt rÃ¼cksichtlos uit Babelfish te komen.
September 22nd, 2008 at 10:02 am
*sigh* Sounds all too much like something my students would write in English.