Sexy Laowai blogger covers Expo!

Written by Julen Madariaga on March 19th, 2010

I just noticed this picture I took this morning in the little lane. The intention was to illustrate how the Olympic spirit is finally coming to the Shanghai local communities. The result is I unwittingly took a cool portrait of myself reflected in the announcement board glass cover.


This is the typical Chinese motivational message that can be seen everywhere, often in the form of rhyming Dos and Don’ts. For a while now many of them are appearing with the Expo as central theme. The Oriental Post had an article yesterday announcing new measures in some districts to have locals take responsibility for their street’s cleanliness.

Handwritten signs like this are very usual in the lanes. They are organized by the residents committee following directives from above. The task of writing the signs is often delegated to the local calligraphy hero, and then you get beautiful pieces of writing (but not in this case, IMO)

The translation of this one is:

The “Seven Builds” proposed by the City of Shanghai’s “Welcome the Expo Civilized Activities Plan”:

    • Maintain order - Build a lawful City
    • Keep Hygiene - Build a Healthy City
    • Protect Environment - Build a biological City
    • Be Polite - Build a Polite City
    • Have solid Credibility - Build a honest City
    • Love Science - Build a Study City
    • Give Kindness - Build a Friendly City

Any corrections welcome. As I usually say, Chinese slogans are very hard to translate because they rarely make any sense, so I didn’t bother to take out the dictionary. Use at your own risk.

Sharing is free, support my work:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Digg
  • Haohao
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • LinkedIn
  • Netvibes
  • Reddit
  • Posterous
  • Live
  • QQ书签
  • MSN Reporter
  • 豆瓣
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • MySpace
  • FriendFeed
  • Print

Comments so far ↓

  1. Mar

    Great Pic, Keep Hygiene – Build a Healthy City, don’t spit everywhere hihihi :)

    [Reply to this comment]

  2. Mar

    The fifth line is probably better translated as “having solid credibility”? Solid credit seems to refer to credit-worthiness in a financial sense. You did a great job translating. It’s so difficult to translate from scratch. It’s much easier to critique someone else’s translation :-)

    [Reply to this comment]

  3. Mar
    Julen Madariaga

    Thanks, I am changing that. I am looking forward to the day My old neighbour starts grumbling again, I will smugly point him to the sing and say: “remember to give kindness, build a friendly city” LOL!

    Also, I was tempted initially to translate cheng as Wall, as in 长城. The result would have been interesting, think of building “a wall of health” “a wall of lawfullness” “a wall of friendliness”. But then I guess it is pretty obvious from the context that they speaking of a city.

    [Reply to this comment]

  4. Mar
    Kai Ni

    That’s not sexy, thats just an overextended ego of your vanity. Its actually more exactly like you can see why we call you people Gweilo or Laowai because you look exactly like a White Ghost. If we print a picture like that in China we won’t do because it means our karma is fading and we will die soon. Within a few weeks or months you might die and be a ghost transparent image just like in the photo. Its very bad joss you printed that picture.

    [Reply to this comment]

  5. Mar
    Julen Madariaga

    @Kai Ni- 你别再讲这些封建迷信否则我只能派你去劳改页学习学习!

    反正我是个白鬼才怪!我的皮肤比中国人的还要黄了! :)

    [Reply to this comment]

Leave a Comment