My greatest frustration as a translation project manager is not correcting mistakes or polishing style. It’s dealing with “pinhead” translators. “Pinhead” is the worst recommendation an Israeli employer can give his worker. It means a person focusing narrowly on his responsibilities, never taking the time to take a step back and look at the big picture of the project.
The other day, a translator returned a document full of tables as plain text. When I called his attention to formatting, he had this to say:
“Re formatting, your initial posting does not explicitly mention formatting as part of the deliverables.”
Sigh! Read more... (490 words, estimated 1:58 mins reading time)
The other day, a UK translator responded to my inquiry for cooperation with a flat refusal, motivated by her “support of the BDS movement and the moral stance against atrocities committed by Israel against the Palestinian people.”
Forget about the dubious logic of stereotyping all 7 million Israelis as willing collaborators with government policies (reality check: Israel is a democracy with an extremely robust political debate). Apparently, this British BDS supporter has greater moral compunctions than the Arabic translators from places as far-flung as Gaza, Bethlehem, Egypt, and Jordan, with whom we cooperate on mutually profitable projects.
After the initial shock of coming face-to-face with this Jew-hatred and ignorance, I felt grateful and fortunate! Nothing helps us count our blessings like a little bump on the path. Read more... (296 words, estimated 1:11 mins reading time)
Tagged with: Arabic
Posted in Blog
This winter was especially rainy here in Israel. The skies were overcast for days on end, and drizzle gave way to showers, that turned into a downpour, only to go back to drizzle a few hours later.
Israelis were ecstatic! Despite the cold, the wind, and the inconvenience of walking through lake-like puddles, we counted every drop. In a country where the amount of rainfall directly affects the price of water in the tap and the cost of vegetables at the grocery, rain is a cause for celebration.
Since biblical times, rain has served as a gauge of the Jews’ relationship with G-d. The divine promise of “but the land, which you go over to possess …. drinks water as the rain of heaven comes down; “ (Deuteronomy 11:11) and the curse of ”and the anger of the L-rd will be kindled against you, and He shall shut up the heaven, so that there shall be no rain” (Deuteronomy 11:17) are deeply ingrained into our national psyche. Read more... (434 words, 1 image, estimated 1:44 mins reading time)
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