《我的儿子是奇葩》

(选自《英语世界》2014年第6期)

文/王逢鑫

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最近电视台热播的连续剧《我的儿子是奇葩》,不仅受到年轻观众的青睐,而且也受到中老年人的关注。“奇葩”这个网络热词,本来是80后常说的口头语,现在不少中老年人也理解了它的新义,对其不再陌生,甚至常把它挂在嘴边。

“奇葩”的第一个意思是指“奇特而美丽的花朵”。英语可以译为 exotic, enchanting flower,例如:

1.我在这个植物园里看到许多从未见过的奇葩异草。
In this botanic garden, I saw many exotic, enchanting flowers and rare grasses that I had never seen.

2.这个大型花卉市场里奇葩斗妍。
In this large-scale flower market, exotic, enchanting flowers vie with each other for beauty. 

“奇葩”的第二个意思是比喻“珍贵奇特的盛貌,或非常出众的事物”,多与文化艺术相关。英语可以译为 outstanding work, wonderful work, wonderful treasure,例如:

3.这部长篇小说堪称近年来文坛上出现的一朵奇葩。
This novel can be considered as an outstanding work that has appeared in the literary world in recent years.

4.中国民间剪纸艺术具有悠久的历史和丰富的文化内涵,被认为是我国民间艺苑中的一朵奇葩。
Chinese folk paper-cut art has a long history and rich cultural connotation, and is regarded as a wonderful work in the realm of folk art in our country.

5.人们公认贝多芬的作品是音乐史上的奇葩。
It is universally acknowledged that Beethoven’s works are wonderful treasures in the history of music.

“奇葩”的第三个意思是比喻“十分离奇,不落世俗,个性十足,世间罕至”,指怪异的人或事物,是近年来出现的网络用语。英语表示“古怪”的形容词有 strange, odd, eccentric, weird, bizarre, queer 等。“奇葩”可以译为 strange/odd/eccentric/weird/bizarre/queer person 或 strange/odd/eccentric/weird/bizarre/queer thing,例如:

6.她真是一个奇葩,她支持的想法几乎都是不可理解的,她的生活方式对别人来说也都是怪异的。
She is such a strange person that the ideas she espouses are almost incomprehensible and the way she lives is bizarre to others.

7.奇葩行为古怪,习惯或看法与大多数人不同。
An odd person behaves in a strange way, and has habits or opinions that are different from those of most people.

8.约翰是个奇葩,他甚至连双脚都刺上花纹。
John is an eccentric person. He even has tattoos on his feet.

9.我有个奇葩朋友,总跟我谈论大多数人听不懂的话题。
I have an eccentric friend. He always talks to me about topics that most people cannot understand.

10.你太荒唐了,让人无法理解,简直就是一朵奇葩。
You are so absurd and unintelligible that you are simply a weird person.

英语有些俚语,像 strange bird,odd bird,oddball,weirdo,意思是 a person who behaves in strange or unusual ways,相当于汉语的“奇葩”,例如:

11.A strange bird refers to someone who is somewhat unusual. His thinking and actions are different or difficult to understand.
“奇葩”指有点异常的人,想法和行为与众不同或难以理解。

12.Our neighbor is a real odd bird. He never talks to anyone.
我们的邻居真是个奇葩,从不跟任何人说话。

13.John is an oddball. He never shows interest in anyone.
约翰是个奇葩,从来不对任何人感兴趣。

在当今世界,有一群奇葩,他们努力想在怪异行动中创造或打破世界纪录,把自己的名字载入“吉尼斯世界纪录”。
西方历史上出现了不少奇葩人物,流传过关于他们的趣闻轶事。下面是英国著名女作家戴姆•艾迪斯•希特维尔的父亲乔治•希特维尔爵士的一个故事。

Sir George Sitwell (father of the famous writer Dame Edith Sitwell) was a very bizarre man in many ways. He was a keen gardener (he actually studied garden design) and, annoyed by the wasps in his garden, he invented a pistol for shooting them. After he moved to Italy to avoid taxes in Britain, he refused to pay his new wife’s debts which resulted in her spending three months in prison. He was such an avid reader and collector of books that he had seven libraries in his home. Other eccentricities included paying his son an allowance based on the amount paid by one of his forebears to his son during the Black Death, and trying to pay his son’s Eton school fees with produce from his garden. But perhaps most bizarrely, Sir George had the cows on his estate stenciled in a blue-and-white Chinese willow pattern in order to make them look better. This is the notice that Sir George hung on the gate of his manor in Derbyshire, England: “I must ask anyone entering the house never to contradict me or differ from me in any way, as it interferes with the functioning of my gastric juices and prevents my sleeping at night.”
乔治•希特维尔爵士(著名作家戴姆•艾迪斯•希特维尔的父亲)在许多方面是一个非常奇葩的人。他热衷园艺(他实际上学习过园艺设计),因为被花园里的黄蜂激怒,就发明了一种射击黄蜂的手枪。为逃避在英国纳税搬至意大利之后,他拒绝为新任妻子偿还债务,结果使她被判服刑三个月。他酷爱阅读和收藏书籍,家里有七间藏书房。他的其他奇葩行为还包括:付给儿子的生活费基于(14世纪欧洲)黑死病蔓延时期他的一个祖先付给自己儿子生活费的数额;试图用自己花园所产的农产品给儿子支付在伊顿公学的学费。也许最奇葩的事是,乔治爵士给自家奶牛身上印上中国青花柳图案,就为了让奶牛更好看。下面是乔治爵士在他位于英格兰德比郡的庄园大门上悬挂的告示内容:“我必须请求任何进入本府的人不要跟我顶嘴,或以任何方式与我意见相左,因为那样会干扰我的胃液功能,使我夜晚不能入眠。” □

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