In Bruges (lost In Translation)

February 13, 2013 4:18pm Published by Jules Smith in The Art Philosopher 28 Comments

After being cursed by the troll maker I felt it was time for a stiff drink. As it happens, there was a famous little pub at the bottom of a very thin alleyway.  Famous for having 365 beers, one for every day of the year.  Now how cool is that.  Needless to say it was packed solid with people wishing to sample the fineries of Belgium.  We eventually got a seat and I put my troll delicately on the table.  The bartender noticed and rushed over…yeah, he’d seen this kind of trouble brewing before no doubt and asked what we wanted. 
“Please” I said “You choose for me because I will not have the ability to choose from 365 since I often find it impossible to choose between two.  What I’d like is something reminiscent of a fine traditional ale, maybe sweetish or fruity and with the after effect of a class A drug” 
He clearly took this seriously as after a few sips of my Christmas ale I felt wondrously dizzy and giggly.  As did my Mother.  On the table there was a booklet with a story about this famous little inn but only in Belgian.  Since I am a lazy Brit who relies on everyone speaking English I was at a loss.  Whilst I am able to speak a modicum of French/Italian and German I tend to get them all mixed up and end up speaking, what I fondly refer to, as “Splinglish’  It tends to work well for me as long as I use a lot of hand gestures.  Anyway, the bartender was way too busy to translate and the European couple opposite didn’t look very friendly.  I don’t think they liked the way my troll was looking at them.  So, my Mother and I took it upon ourselves to translate it as best we could.  (If you are a Belgian reading this and can translate it properly, PLEASE DON’T as I think my version will attract more trade to this fine pub)

Reads: Bruges is very romantic. In the middle of the town there are plenty of streets.  Camels on streets….streets that never end….Branded streets and the God forgotten street of goals where you’ll find…. “De Garre”
De Garre (this pub) is 600 years old – zippetydoodaa! We’ve stood here for ages in our zingy fabric (s).  Even though we are Brugian we have our own official ‘street talk’ and we have called it ‘“De Garre’ speak.

Reads: On the streets in 1860, a Frenchman called Zekere Cornielle came over and said “Bruges has had its best now, it’s out on it’s heel. Operation ‘Slag” will bring Bruges back and we will open a “Garre on the corner”

Reads: From March 21st – April 1984, 17 hours a day we are open for drinking
Sin is then the topic of the hour if you’re still bloody standing…

De Garre is only for those with a typical type of stamina and no fear. We don’t want those that are rusty. On sluts day, we do not tolerate toe rags.

Reads:Weekdays we open at 12 (on saturdays at 11) and get ditched around midnight. (Friday and Saturday we can make it ‘til 1am) Monday is only for sluts day.
It tends to get very active when dudes like the whore bar and we dance the Bolero and latin in a blustery way. We find ourselves so friendly that each moment we get better (staying “on the wagon” is a great problem)

Reads: It may cost you a good amount but you will get through it with a local, a table, a stool, a map, some material (a glass, a messy board, a fork, salt and pepper a serviette and a nap) and BY THE WAY., in the beginning you’ll get gas so being near electricity and water is at your own personal cost.(bowels get brutal as the nectar takes it grip and premium beer jars, filled with gold, brings about solidarity and putting the world to rights- but avoid talking politics) We are fond of our standing brigade and them spending their pension fund ( = mandatory for getting in) And that’s all.  What we do oversee is winnings, where we hog a small 50% of whatever you bastards bet on.  Isn’t that good?

We thank you for meddling on site.

I think I shall have Belgian as my second language.


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Haha, Jules, you should have been with Basil Fawlty when the Germans arrived! The bit I’m most sure you got right was the last sentence (Isn’t that good). The bit I’m most sure you got wrong was “zippetydoodaa!” – even I know “zuid” means “south”!

Don’t be ridiculous Mr GB. I absolutely know, in my heart of hearts that word means ” zippetydoodaa”

LOL LOL! Seriously, you are so funny! But since I speak fluent Afrikaans (imagine Dutch and German had a child – yeah that) I can understand most of it and I must say, you’re pretty spot on! Minus one or two things here and there – ensuing hilarity! 😉

Well Azra you should know with your multi lingual excellence and beautiful hair. Good to know I’m on the right track! 😉

Love your translation. A bar with 365 kinds of beer! That is cool.

It’s beyond cool Belle.

Spoken like a true Belgian. Is Bruges worth a trip? I’ve fancied since I watched In Bruges and a bar with 350 types of beer sounds tempting.

Yes definitely worth a visit. I could quite happily live there and make that pub my local.

Fortunately for you, I speak fluent Belgian – in several dialects – and can happily state that your translation has hit the nail on the nose.

Eddy Merckx

Well thank you Eddy, now “On yer bike!”

365 kinds of beer?? Yes please! I hope you have a good Friday. P.S. I added you through your FB link if that’s ok!

Exactly. Belgium is just an endless taste sensation. Yes of course that’s ok – welcome.

I’m glad someone else has perfected the art of Spinglish – I thought it was just me. Like you try that broken French on some guy at a stall and know it’s a massive fail when he responds in English.

HAHAHAHA! EXACTLY. This is why I don’t bother.

Ha. I felt like I had downed a few Christmas Ales after reading that.

I tell you what, a few of those and you’d know about it. One nearly knocked me out!

Very nice adventures you have. I picture England as having nook and cranny places of business everywhere. Ripe for exploration.
Toe rags?

Hello goatman. Well England does have many nooks and crannys where all SORTS of business goes on let me tell you. We do have some wide open spaces but not by American standards!
A toe rag is a term of endearment we use for those that are degenerates, scoundrels, rapscallions and other. You may now use it on people you don’t like.

I like your translation! Nice to find your here!

Hello Katherine! Nice to find you here too.

Translating hoorbaar into whorebar… it’s the best translation ever. I’m so proud of you. Or could it be the magic troll that keeps staring at everyone? 😉

Hello Blue Grumpster! I’m so proud that you’re proud. Nobody’s ever been proud of me before. It might be the magic troll… hmmm… however he’s now stashed away in a dusty Christmas box in the attic. He’ll probably bite me when I take him out next year and say to myself “What the hell did I buy this for? Oh yeah….”

Hello Juliette! My leg is moving so I’m pretty sure someone on the other side of the waters is pulling it, which is fine for I know it is you. Poor ugle little repulsive troll, though. Don’t you know they’re afraid of dark attics? They get lonely and before you know it, your troll ends up on your telly talking to Dr Phil and blaming you for their misery.

Doctor Phil? He’s that American guru doc right? PFFT! We don’t have Doctor Phil ( ok he’s maybe on some of our many, getting a bit too much like AmeRRRRRica, channels) We have Jeremy Kyle. Oh yes! Now if I EVER and I mean EVER see my troll airing his dirty washing in public on that show I will send him right back to the troll maker and have his…his…hair cut off! Yeah.

HAH I loved this so much. I think you read Belgian fluently 🙂 Whore bar. HILARIOUS.

Thank you Deirdre. I think so too. I think I should be part of European Parliament.!

You know “billions” is a lot, right?
He says kiddingly . . .

Ha ha! Well, actually as it happens I’ve only just finished counting them and I’ve since found that I underestimated my original figure and am currently at 1 billion and 41. The annoying thing was that I lost count somewhere around one million and twenty seven and suddenly thought to myself ” Have I counted that red one twice?” and had to start ALL OVER AGAIN. Plus, since I was doing it by candlelight and it took so long, guess how many candles I have left now? NONE. I’m burnt out. 😉

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