Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Just for a real hoot

The text below is the English translation of a Dutch email I sent to someone at the Administration office here in our harbour. I've left out the names for obvious reasons, but I felt I had to publish it. The translation was done through Google and is absolutely hysterical. I haven't laughed so much in weeks.

Hope you find it amusing too! The email it was in response to was already in English and mentioned that the Board of the Museum had not received enough information from Maryssa's restoration plan to determine whether she could get a place in the harbour. I should explain that the words fireplace and chimney that keep cropping up have to do with the Schouw Comissie, (real meaning = inspection committee) who are the people responsible for evaluating the ships coming into the harbour. However schouw does also mean fireplace and apparently chimney too, leading to these very strange and highly amusing suggestions that I had a rapport with my chimney.. Read on....!

My daughter, Maryssa, the email below from mnr XXX received. Rxxx I do not know who wrote this email or who is responsible but I find it surprising for the following reasons:

1. Maryssa has a very detailed restoration plan in September of service with answers to most of the questions below. Regarding the questions about "swords" and the cockpit has she sought advice from the Commission uses Schouw so these questions are very confusing.

2. When the fireplace chimney committee did, they had not seen any records of her ship and last week Martin had no hair restoration plan is to fish. How is that possible if Maryssa these documents has been in service in September? Mnr XXXXX in September confirmed that everything he "in good order" and has received documents that were "impressive". Why now, after more than two months, the fireplace committee not see everything? This is clear from the questions below. Still a very confusing time.

3. When my ship put into the Old Port, I had a real rapport with advice for my chimney restoration plan. I paid nothing. Maryssa has paid € 150 but she has no report received and chimney should seek advice from other people? I find this more confusing Rxxx and very unprofessional. She said in the original application that she is serious about the restoration of the ship with a reference year of 1932 but she has also said that she needed advice from the chimney committee. Why are they getting these questions but gets no opinion?

It was not my intention for me to Rxxx in this case, but I find it strange that after all her work and after almost three months, it is clear that no one proposal has Maryssa good read and that the chimney commission so little information had received (as before and after the chimney). Also report that they had no fireplace.

It seems to me that the handling of this matter your personal attention, Rxxx. If the Port Museum to be more professional and people have to pay € 150 for an application, they expect more than this kind of treatment. Maryssa deserves the same opportunities as other people but I hope that not all the other applicants have had this experience.

Sorry for my Dutch, Rxxx. Chose (what it made of Koos) is not here as a translator so I hope you can understand.

Best regards



  1. As terms of reference:
    The Schouw Comissie = the Fireplace Chimney
    Hair = her
    Chose = Koos

    Added to this Google has lost half the verbs and in many places got the word order so mixed up you can almost feel the translation machine going aaaaagh!

    In the email she received, they spoke about a Ruther which we think is meant to be Rudder, just to add to the confusion!

  2. "the chimney commission so little information had received (as before and after the chimney). Also report that they had no fireplace." My favorite line!

  3. LOL Val!
    I LOVE it!

    I am in dire need of a fireplace chimney committe right now - my chimneys need cleaning and my chimney sweep won't return my calls...

    Now, I also believe Bobby might be able to deliver an answer regarding the swords, but alas, he is not that familiar with cockpits...

    I should also let Gene in on the little trick about fishing being a hair restorer...
    Does Chose know about this interesting tidbit?

    I am in stitches, too!


  4. Yeah, Google translations rulez! :)
    When we want to have som good fun at home, Ingela runs her blogs through Google translations from Swedish to Finnish and then sometimes further on to English and we end up rolling on the floor laughing!
    Cheap fun that is, no need for beer &c... :)

  5. Yes Mo, that line's my favourite too. I still laugh my socks off each time I read it.

    Dale, Chose is way past being interested in fish as a hair resotrer..lol..especially as he knows I can't stand the smell. As for cockpits, well I guess they are wheelhouses of sorts and the swords (should have mentioned) were what Google made of 'zwaarden' meaning leeboards. It still has me in stitches! The best fun I've had all week.

    Hans, you are so right. Entertainment for free! The other great thing to do is to look up rude words and common insults in an old fashioned dictionary. Also hilarious fun for nothing ;-)

  6. I forgot to mention too that the fish being suggested as a hair restorer is the surname, Vis. I have x'd out all the other names, but Google in its wisdom made this one to entertaining to delete.

    What I wonder is why it left some names untouched - names that could also have been translated - and not others. I'd love to know how the translation programme works.

  7. Don't you just love it when something simple sends you over the top with side-splitting giggles and laughter?

    Cheap entertainment - absolutely!


  8. The fireplace chimney committee sounds like something out of Harry Potter :p

  9. Oll is busy with rod and line as I write!
    We didn't need Google for a laugh last month. Took 'Wandering Snail' through a Dutch lock where she became 'Wonder Snake' on their computer.

  10. Actually Google Translate is surprisingly good for an auto-translator. :-) But: I wonder if someone has come up with a new form of poetry or storytelling, one that utilizes randomly picked bits of randomly picked languages and feeds them into Google Translate. There is a form of poetry called FLARF, which uses Google search results.


Apologies for switching on comment moderation, but this is to make sure everyone can comment without jumping through captcha hoops! However, anonymous comments will not be published, so please would you sign your name.