I started accepting work from this agency (based in India) posting jobs on Translators Cafe back in July of this year. I really enjoyed the work though they were always rushing me at odd hours with ridiculous deadlines. But it was a very interesting project so I put up with it.
To-date, they haven’t paid me a single cent out of the USD150++ I billed them for. I am disappointed because fellow freelance writers/translators have warned me against anything that comes out of India but I thought there must be exceptions to the rule, right?
Apparently, I am thoroughly and sorely mistaken.
Recently I started working with audio translation and came across the following point with the client:
“…please take care of the following.
Alhammdo Lillaha should be translated as Praise be to God.
Assalahm alaikum = Peace be upon you.
Allaha = God.
Similarly any word spoken in any language other than English should be translated even if these are customary greetings.”
I had chosen to stick to the original words because I felt that they are already common enough in our daily language. While they are specifically used by Muslims and not as interchangeable as “Shalom” or “Namaste”, the idealist in me thought as the world gets smaller, the mind should get a little broader too.
I believe that at different points in our life, we are meant to serve one or more purposes. Sometimes we succeed, other times we don’t. While it is hard to lose gracefully, it still wins over apathy any day.
I came across this project pitched on KickStarter called Underage. Unfortunately I found out too late and the pledge was unsuccessful. I don’t know how much I can help. I don’t know if I can help. But I know if I don’t do anything at all, then I definitely cannot help.
It is heartbreaking to witness the stories of these boys. They seem to have come from a horrible place, only to be in their current worse state. I do not have the answers. I just want to try.
Take away what you wish from this.
Earlier in the year, I had written about about Jyoti Singh Pandey, the female student in India who was brutally gang-raped and subsequently died from the attack.
This week, the world is rocked again where this time, it involves a five-year old who sustained equal, if not worse injuries.
I had expressed my doubt of things ever improving in India, a country where women are not the fairer sex; but rather, the sub-human gender. But Indian women are not the only victims, as this poor Swiss tourist and her husband discovered. And how can the powers that be reason with culprits who are most likely witnesses to attacked, brutalized and abused women all their lives; where the perpetrator(s) never had to face any consequences? How to reverse millennium steeped in the practices of honor killing, sati, casteism and victim-shaming? It is a culture that has thrived on segregating its people.
The government promises to be resolute in convicting the guilty and righting the wrong. Yet stories of victims being coerced to recant their stories or paid to remain silent continue to leak. I for one, continue to see little hope.
Rashomon Audition Call (28th & 29th Mar)
If you’ve always wanted to try your luck at acting, specifically live performance – then this is for you!
KLPAC is auditioning tonight and tomorrow for the restaging of “Rashomon”. In summary, the story is intricate and intriguing about how there’s always more than one side to any tale. Just prepare a 3-5 minute dramatic monologue, work up some courage and you’re good to go!
Auditions by appointment-only so please call ahead. Good luck!
In the mood for second opinion(s) and/or if anyone else feels like sharing. I started translating subtitles recently and it’s actually quite fun!
The only drawback is that often I am doing one episode out of an entire series so I really have to figure things out just to make sure I know what I’m doing.
Below is the feedback I received from the client’s in-house editor.
Original: 二叔, 你該面對的也不是我
Translation: Uncle, I am not the one you need to make peace with.
Editor’s Version (Reasoning): Uncle, I am not the music you should face (It’s not about resolving something, but atonement).
Original: 要贖罪 祇能來這裡
Translation: Indeed, redemption can be found here.
Editor’s Version (Reasoning): You can only come here to atone (“redemption can be found here” suggests that one will be forgiven, but in this context, he is saying that this is the only place he can turn to).
Translation: We are now in charge of the household.
Editor’s Version: She handed the whole household to me, including you.