Archive for 7 July 2008

Itanglish Korner

Ciao Bloggisti!

One of the things I love about this country is it’s reverence for the English language. It made life as a new immigrant a lot easier for me. I found a job as an English teacher almost immediately and I could have worked night and day had I wanted to. I’ve taught hundreds of people, from kids to police officers, from senior executives to actors. Yes, English lessons have become more fashionable than a pair of Louboutins. In spite of all the teaching that’s going on, somehow Italians don’t have the best grasp of the language. And the mistakes I see are always good for a cheap chuckle. Which is why I’ve decided to inaugurate a new feature: the Itanglish Korner, a sort of Engrish alla pizzaiola . Like the time last week when I went to El Brellin restaurant in the heart of Milan’s Navigli district. A beautiful, elegant place with traditional Milanese dishes like Osso Buco and Risotto. And lo and behold, the menu was in Italian and English. Perfect! Well, not exactly. I was more than a little perplexed the description of one dish, which boasted a delicious sauce of “anchovies straining”. It took a lot of wine to get the image of constipated fish out of my mind.

And just the other day while going for a walk in town, I came across this poster for a local fair, featuring a number of “international” artists, including everyone’s favourite grunge band:

Ha! I’m torn between Perl Giem and the musical stylings of Maury & Mary. Hmmm….

Anyway, the next time I see a terribly-translated menu or any other distortion of the English language, I’ll let you know. And if you have any Itanglish you’d like to share, send ’em in. The more the merrier!

7 July 2008 at 11:13 pm 4 comments


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