Back right now yesterday


I’m back from having been away, as the Dutch say. While waiting for my luggage yesterday, I had this Dunglish bit staring at me in the face repeatedly. Call it my last vacation picture or my “Welcome back at Holland” picture. (Yes, that mistake was deliberate.)

I don’t have a picture, but a story of some reverse Dunglish. In Montréal where I was on vacation, I visited a T-shirt shop that sold country logos. The one for the Netherlands was an odd version of the Dutch football team lion (a cross between the KNVB and the Postbank lion) and instead of “Nederland” (the country) it read “Nederlands” (the language). It was the only country with a mistake, and I left without pointing it out.

What’s really wrong with this picture? The bad use of the present tense. The use of “right now” commands the present continuous (or progressive) and not the simple present. A very basic mistake. “His” should be in capitals as well and I would have written this bit differently, but then that would be work.

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6 Responses to “Back right now yesterday”

  1. Joris Amsterdam says:

    “Terug van weggeweest” is the Dutch expression (not: terug van wegzijn) = back from having been away (not: back from being away) 🙂

  2. Joris Amsterdam says:

    No, a better translation is: back from been away 🙂 We’d better be precise here.

  3. Natashka says:

    Then I’ll change it, thanks!

  4. Chris says:

    De bebording is expres in twee kleuren gedaan, zodat ‘shops’ en ‘right now’ onbewust extra opvallen, zodat je getriggerd wordt nu te gaan shoppen. Zo van, de winkels zijn nu open, ga nu shoppen!

  5. Natashka says:

    Maar ik word niet echt geprikkeld door spelfouten 🙂

  6. John says:

    That store was Bang-On, and I know that shirt! I was working in the art department designing shirts when we made that one. It is meant to be football-inspired because the World Cup was on then. But believe me, it’s not the only country shirt with a mistake. We had a hell of a time with the Czech Republic, because the spelling changes depending on where it’s used in a sentence. I think we finally got that one corrected when a Czech customer complained. But I’m sure there were plenty of other mistakes, because we never got them checked by people from those countries.

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