Sunday, November 01, 2009
A SWEET BILINGUAL ERROR
Go and ask Thomas what colour the biscuits should be, I told Pudge. He returned and proudly replied pinkish brown! Pinkish brown??? What the hell is pinkish brown, I wondered. I know Thomas never speaks to Léon in English so I translated in my head the words pink and brown into Danish and suddenly I understood. Danish for pink is lyserød, literally light red. I had expected Thomas's answer to be either light or dark brown. Of course Thomas must have said lysebrun (light brown) but when Pudge heard the lyse the only colour he knew beginning lyse was pink. He's obviously never analysed the meaning of the word lyserød and has simply taken it to mean pink, no more, no less. Sweet!