双语:鸡年的“鸡”到底是公鸡还是母鸡?
爱语吧 2017-01-20 13:28 浏览1307次

  This year is the year of ji according to the Chinese zodiac that features 12 animals. Chinese words are made up of characters which function like root words in English. A single character is usually ambiguous in meaning. In the Year of the Ox, for instance, we were debating whether it should be the year of the bull, the cow, the heifer, or the steer. The choice has a lot to do with age, gender, as well as surgical procedures involving testicles. The word ji creates similar difficulties, although perhaps not the Year of the Cock, for obvious reasons, but how about chicken, hen, or rooster?

  按照中国的十二生肖来看,今年是鸡年。汉语由字组成,就好像英语的词根一样。单个的字通常意义模糊。举例来说,我们会争论牛年的“牛”到底是公牛、奶牛、小母牛、还是肉牛。我们的选择和牛的年龄、性别、以及是否阉割过都有关系。鸡年的“鸡”也遇到了同样的麻烦,虽然很明显不是男人的那个“鸡”,但是到底是小鸡、母鸡还是公鸡呢?

  My first choice would be rooster. These zodiac signs are all about symbolism if you ask me, though there are people who believe that, because you are born in a monkey year, you monkey around doing monkey business. I don’t believe it. Just as I don’t believe that dog-year people bite, bark or pee near a fire hydrant. Roosters fare better on my symbolism scale. In Chinese, "rising to the crow of the rooster" is a sign of a "gritty", hard-working person. According to recent psychological findings, such people are the salt of the earth. For this reason alone, I had hoped I could raise a rooster in my backyard, but homeowner association bylaws and city ordinances do not encourage it. I will download a cock-a-doodle-doo ringtone instead.

  我的第一选择是公鸡(rooster)。在我看来所有生肖形象都是具有象征意义的,但是有些人认为因为你属猴,所以你就会像猴子一样调皮捣蛋。我不这样认为,就像我不认为属狗的人会乱叫、咬人、或者在消防栓底下撒尿一样。从象征意义上来说,公鸡的形象更好。在汉语里,“闻鸡起舞”往往是“有毅力”、勤劳的人的表现。根据最近心理学方面的一些发现,这样的人是这个世界上不可或缺的。仅仅是这一个原因,我曾经就希望在后院里养一只大公鸡,但是业主委员会章程和城市管理条例却并不鼓励我这样做。相反我会下载一个公鸡打鸣的铃声。

  Calling 2017 the Year of the Chicken would also work. Chicken commonly refers to someone lacking courage in English, but I have found the image of chickens is being rehabilitated, and it can even mean courage to pursue a good life, as shown in the movie Chicken Run. As a translator, when asked what the novels I have translated have in common, I say most of them have a character who tries to raise chickens. Raising chickens brings us back to a simpler time when people grow their own food instead of depending on food whose price includes transportation and marketing costs along with executives’ salaries.

  说鸡年的“鸡”是小鸡(chicken)也讲得通。在英语里,小鸡通常指那些胆小的弱鸡,但是我发现小鸡的形象正在好转,甚至可以用来形容追求美好生活的勇气,例如电影《小鸡快跑(Chicken Run)》。作为一名译者,当被问及我所翻译的小说有什么共同之处时,我说大多数小说里都有一个养鸡的人。养鸡使我们回到了一个更简单一些的时代,人们种植自己的食物,而不是依赖于那些价格包括了运输费用、营销成本和高管工资的食物。

  In rural China, when a guest comes, the hosts will kill a rooster or hen to serve as a main dish. Farmers raise a limited number of roosters or hens, and chicken eggs are an important source of nutrition for the family; one should not take such hospitality for granted. When I first came to America as a poor graduate student, I found chicken to be a very cheap grocery buy. I often cooked a whole bunch of chicken wings or legs at one time which would last me several days. If we are what we eat, I should have grown feathers by now. When I went back home, my mom again had a hen killed for me. I told her I have had a lot of chicken already. My mom said: "But it is homegrown!" She was right. She always is. Chicken is the food for the ordinary men and women, whether they are the farmers in China who let their chickens roam wild, or an office worker who watches the Cowboys play the Packers on the TV, while nibbling salt and vinegar chicken wings.

  在中国农村,当有客人来的时候,主人家会杀一只公鸡或者母鸡来当做主菜。农民会养少量的公鸡或母鸡,而鸡蛋是家庭重要的营养来源;吃鸡肉的客人不应把这样的盛情款待当做理所当然。我第一次来美国的时候还是一个穷研究生,当时我发现可以在杂货店里很便宜地就买到鸡肉。我通常会一次煮一整串鸡翅或鸡腿,这样接下来好几天都会有肉吃。如果吃什么补什么的话,我现在估计应该已经长出鸡毛了吧。当我回国之后,我母亲又为我杀了一只母鸡。我告诉她我已经吃了够多鸡肉了。但是我妈说:“这是自家养的(国产的)。”她是对的,她总是对的。鸡肉是平民百姓的食物,无论他们是让鸡在野外潇洒的中国农民,还是一边看橄榄球比赛、一边啃着盐醋鸡翅的办公室职员。

  I would also call 2017 the Year of the Hen for the same reason. In addition to hens that become food, think of all the eggs we eat, boiled, poached or scrambled, in cakes, burritos, casseroles, egg drop soups, or even pasta with buttered egg sauce. We should show proper respect for all these hens and eggs. Their lives matter. If this article makes you so guilty that you want to convert to a vegan lifestyle, do it. It is honorable if you do, and may help to resuscitate your New Year resolution to become a better person with the coming of the Lunar New Year. However, for the rest of us who still relish some fried chicken, do these feathered friends a favor by not wasting any of your food-and, of course, eat less chicken. The environment will thank you, the chickens will too. Happy Year of the Rooster, Chicken, Hen, however you want to call it.

  同理,说鸡年的“鸡”是母鸡也说得过去。除了母鸡本身是一种食物外,想一想那些我们吃掉的煮鸡蛋、荷包蛋,想一想那些我们加在蛋糕、蛋卷、蛋花汤、甚至蛋黄酱意大利面里的鸡蛋吧。我们应该对所有这些母鸡和鸡蛋表示应有的尊敬。母鸡的命也是命!如果这篇文章让你很内疚,以至于你想改吃素的话,那就那样做吧!那样做是光荣的,可能会帮助你重拾新年决心,在来年成为一个更好的人。但是,对于剩下的我们这些仍然想来一口炸鸡的人,帮帮忙不要浪费食物!当然,也要少吃一点鸡肉。环境会感谢你的,鸡们也会!“鸡”年快乐,无论哪个鸡!

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